Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Pumpkin Bars


4 eggs
1 2/3 cup sugar
1 cup canola oil
1 15-oz. can pumpkin
2 cups all-purpose
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda

Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract


1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.

2. Using an electric mixer at medium speed, combine the eggs, sugar, oil and pumpkin until light and fluffy. Stir together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. Add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture and mix at low speed until thoroughly combined and the batter is smooth.

3. Spread the batter into a greased 9x13 baking pan. Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool completely before frosting.

4. To make the frosting, combine the cream cheese and butter in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Add the sugar and mix at low speed until combined. Stir in the vanilla and mix again. Spread on cooled pumpkin bars.

Makes a 9x13 pan of bars.

Note: Eat these with a glass of milk. :)

Recipe found here

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Mini Cheesecake


3/4 c crumbled chocolate-wafer cookies (about 18 cookies)
1/2 c sugar plus 1 tablespoon sugar plus 1 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 ounces (3 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
1 pound cream cheese, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 c sour cream
pinch of salt
1/2 c apricot jam


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin tins with paper liners. Mix cookies and 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sugar in a bowl. Stir in butter. Press 1 tablespoon of mixture in bottom of each cup. Bake until set, about 7 min. Cool.
Reduce oven temperature to 275 degrees. Beat cream cheese until smooth. Add 1/2 c sugar, then vanilla. While mixer is running add eggs slowly. Add sour cream and salt. Pour batter into muffin tins.
Bake until centers are wobbly about 20 min. Cool. Wrap tins tightly. Refrigerate 4 hrs.
Warm jam in saucepan until it forms a liquid. Strain though a sieve. Spoon 1 teaspoon jam on each cake. Then eat up!

I made these for a baby shower. I used vanilla wafers instead of chocolate wafers. The paper liners were of animals, because the shower was safari themed.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Sugar Cookies


6 c flour
3 tsp. baking powder
2 c room temp. butter
2 c white sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. salt

3/4 c warm water
5 tablespoons meringue powder
1 teaspoon cream of tarter
2.25 lbs powder sugar (usually a full bag)


Mix sugar and butter for four min. Add eggs and vanilla and mix again. Mix small amounts of dry ingredients at a time. I usually add 1/3 c at a time. After completely mixed, chill for one hour. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll out dough to desired thickness after it has been chilled. Use your cute cookie cutters. This is the fun part of making cookies! I gave the pumpkins and ghosts faces. Cook 8-10 min. on an ungreased cookie sheet. My sunbeams loved the ghosts!

I found the dough recipe here.


Whisk warm water and meringue powder in a bowl by hand. Stop whisking when it becomes frothy and thickened (around 30 sec.). Add the cream of tarter and mix 30 sec. Pour in all powdered sugar and mix with kitchen aid on lowest speed for 10 min. The icing will become creamy. Add food coloring and decorate. I found the frosting recipe at Sweetopia. If you are feeling ambitious around Christmastime, you could make these cute polar bears.

Or these Christmas trees. I love the little bunny.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Blackberry Jam

Blackberry cooked jam


4 cups crushed berries
7 cups sugar
1 pouch CERTO pectin
1/2 tsp butter


1. Bring boiling-water pot, half-full with water, place jars mini 8 or large 4 in boiling water with lids.
2. Crush berries.
3. Sieve 1/2 of the berries to remove some seeds place together with unsieved berries in a pot.
4. Add 7 cups of sugar and stir
5. Add 1/2 tsp butter stir
6. Place pot on stove bring to a rolling boil on high heat. (a boil that doesn't stop bubbling when stirred)
7. Stir in pectin quickly. Return to full rolling boil and boil exactly 1 min. stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Remove any foam from top.
8. Remove hot boiling jars and lids with a metal tongs.
9. Funnel quickly into hot jars place lids on top.
10. Flip upside down for 10 min. After jars cool, check seals by pressing middle of lid with finger. (If lid springs back, lid is not sealed and refrigeration is necessary.) Unopened jam can be stored in a cool, dry, dark place up to 1 year. Refrigerate opened jams and jellies up to 3 weeks.

potato masher works great to crush berries

The sugar is what makes the jam taste so good!

Don't forget to flip the jars upside down.

The final product. Now we can enjoy pb and j's, rolls, toast, and maybe saltine crackers with this jam. I would have to say that I'm so happy to be done with the no sugar diet. It was too hard to resist sweets at this holiday. Sugar cookies will be next. :)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


Razzmataz smoothie

2-3 cups frozen raspberries
1 vanilla light yoplait
around 3 cups 1% milk
1 tbsp honey

Mix all ingredients in blender. Pour in cup and spoon away or sip away whatever you prefer. This smoothie has a lot of raspberries which gives it a great flavor without sugar. I am on a no sugar spell for a month, half way there. This smoothie fills any sugar craving.

I got half way done and realized granola would be good in it. I would rather have the smoothie without. It is always fun to experiment. This granola is vanilla almond granola from whole foods. Its on sale for 2.99 lb.

*note: adjust raspberries and milk to consistency you like.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


(picture taken from my husbands new phone, EVO)


2 cups warm water (110 to 115 degrees)
2/3 cup nonfat dry milk
2 tablespoons active dry yeast
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1/3 cup butter, shortening, or margarine
1 egg
4½ to 5 cups all-purpose flour or bread flour
½ cup butter, melted

In a large bowl of an electric mixer, combine water and dry milk powder, stirring until milk dissolves. Add yeast, then sugar, salt, butter, egg and 2 cups of the flour. Mix on low speed until ingredients are wet. Increase mixer speed to medium and mix for 2 minutes. Add 2 cups flour; mix on low speed until ingredients are wet, then for 2 minutes at medium speed. (Dough will be getting stiff, and remaining flour may need to be mixed in by hand.) Add remaining flour, ½ cup at a time, and mix again until dough is soft, not overly sticky, and not stiff. (It is not necessary to use the entire amount of flour.)

Scrape dough off sides of bowl and pour about 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil all around sides of bowl. Turn dough over in bowl so it is covered with oil. (This helps prevent dough from drying out.) Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise in warm place until doubled in size, about 1½ hours. Sprinkle cutting board or counter with flour and place dough on floured surface. Roll out and shape as desired. Place on greased or parchment-lined baking pans. Cover lightly with plastic wrap. Let rise in warm place until rolls are doubled in size, about 1 to 1½ hours.
Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Brush with melted butter while hot. Serve with Honey Butter or Raspberry Honey Butter. Makes 1½ to 3 dozen rolls, depending on shape and size of rolls.

You can also freeze shaped rolls for later use: Simply double the amount of yeast used when making dough. After the first rise, shape the rolls but do not rise again. Instead, place rolls on a baking sheet and immediately place in freezer. When dough is frozen solid, remove rolls from pan and place in a plastic bag, squeeze excess air out of bag and seal. Rolls can be frozen for 3 weeks.
— "Lion House Bakery"

Thank you for this recipe. I am a huge fan of these rolls. They are way addicting, you can't just have one. We added the last bit of homemade rasberry jam on the rolls. When we ran out of jam we used honeybutter. I couldn't be happier with how they turned out. I will definitely be making these again. I'm so relieved to find a roll recipe that works!

sidenote - use a food thermometer for the water temperature. Also I used a muffin tin.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Cream Puffs


1 c heavy whipping cream
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
a pinch of sprinkles on top

1/2 c water
1/4 c butter
1/2 c flour
2 eggs


Boil water and butter together until butter is melted. Add flour all at once. Cook and stir with wooden spoon until mixture pulls away from sides of pan. The dough will form a ball/lump in middle of pan. Remove from heat. Add eggs and beat with mixer until smooth and velvety. Drop by tablespoon onto greased cookie sheet. Bake 10 min. at 450 degrees oven. Then turn oven down to 250 degrees and cook 30 min. more. Temperature varies with different ovens.
Cool then cut tops off with sharp knife (bread knife) fill with whipping cream. Then top it off with whipping cream and some colorful sugary sprinkles.

*Note-When making whipping cream make sure your bowl and mixer is pre-cooled.

At our wedding my husband suggested one thing and it was cream puffs. It is a family favorite.