A few weeks ago, some of my coworkers from Costa Rica were here on a work trip. I remember that when I had traveled there for work, the hotel I stayed at greeted me with a chocolate chip cookie and I thought that was such a nice touch.
I was pretty sure the hotel they were staying at here wouldn't be doing that....so I baked a whole batch of chocolate chip cookies to greet them with!
And then, just before my buddies headed back home, I whipped up another batch of the cookies for them to bring back with them. My baking has finally gone international..hahaha. Everyone sent me thanks and said they really enjoyed the cookies.
Here's the recipe in case you feel like making some soft, yummy chocolate chip cookies.
Soft & Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
2½ cups all-purpose flour
1tsp baking soda
¼ teaspoon baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
½ cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
The a/c is blowing and it's so hot outside that I don't want to turn on the stove or oven and heat up the inside too. It's time for some summer salads.
Today I made a tuna pasta salad and a broccoli and cauliflower salad.
Tuna Pasta Salad
This can be prepared a day in advance, but don't mix in the Miracle Whip until an hour or two before serving.
1 box tricolored pasta
4 hard boiled eggs (peeled and mashed or chopped)
2 sticks of celery finely diced
1/2 small onion finely diced (you can use green onion if you want a milder onion flavor)
1 1/2 to 2 cans of flaked light tuna
1 cup of Miracle Whip with a squirt of mustard mixed in (just enough to give the MW a yellowy color)
Salt and pepper to taste
Broccoli Cauliflower Salad with Creamy Honey Lemon Dressing
This can be prepared a day in advance as long as it's stored in the fridge.
1 medium head of broccoli
1 medium head of cauliflower
3/4 cup dried cranberries craisins
1/2 cup pine nuts or almond slices toasted on a dry skillet until golden
2 Tbsp honey
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice from 1/2 lemon
1/2 cup real mayonnaise (not Miracle Whip)
Tea Biscuits....what can I say about "tea biscuits". Well, I can start with the fact that I have always struggled with making tea biscuits. They always, always turned out like "hockey pucks". My grandmother made amazing tea biscuits but unfortunately, that was one skill she didn't pass along to me. I tried different recipes over the years but never found one that worked for me. I totally wrote myself off as a tea biscuit maker. My go to "recipe" became opening a tube of Pilsbury biscuits and popping them in the oven. They served the purpose, but they weren't the "real thing"......
And then last week, I asked one of my Facebook recipe/cooking groups for some ideas for a breakfast potluck. I was given a recipe for tea biscuits. I decided to try it just one more time. I followed the recipe, cut out the biscuits, gently added them to the cookie sheet and slowly slid them into the hot oven. I said a little prayer to the cooking gods....and set my timer. I wanted to peek in the oven halfway through the cooking time, but didn't want to jinx it. I draped a tea towel over the handle so I couldn't see in. Finally...the buzzer went off. I grabbed my oven mitts, opened that door and pulled out the tray...
Wow, they looked like my Grandmother's tea biscuits and they smelled amazing...but what were they going to taste like? It was killing me to wait for them to cool enough to test, but I did....well...mostly....
I picked up that biscuit and broke it in two. It looked soft and flaky, smelled good enough to eat, so I did. I ate it...then I ate another one! Oh my goodness, warm from the oven tea biscuits like my Grandmother used to make. I did it, I finally did it!
Now you can too! Give it a try!
2 cups flour
2 tbsp white sugar
4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter (chilled)
1 cup 2% milk
Note: if you want to use these as a base for strawberry shortcake or other berry dessert items, increase the sugar to taste.
***Recipe credit goes to Jil Evans. Thanks Jil for sharing this with me!***
We are having a breakfast meeting at work tomorrow via Webex. My team members are spread across the world yet we can all sit in individual rooms and enjoy a breakfast together as we have our meeting. OK, alright...I may be exaggerating a slight bit. We've got some team members in Minnesota, Texas, Australia and then there are three of us here in Toronto. So, technically...not ALL over the world, but spread far and wide.
Since I don't usually eat much of a breakfast, just some yogurt and fruit, or cereal maybe, I wasn't sure what to bring for this meeting. I was thinking scrambled eggs or omelets, but I wasn't sure if they would reheat well. Staying with the egg theme, I finally decided to try a quiche. I had all the ingredients except the pie shell. I guess I could have tried to make pie crust from scratch, but that seemed like a whole lot of work to me...hahaha. I made a quick trip to the grocery store on my lunch break and grabbed a frozen pie shell.
So....I mixed up all the ingredients, poured them in the pie shell and slid it into a hot oven to bake.
And then there was quiche!
Easy Ham & Cheese Quiche
I needed one sweet potato, just one...but of course I bought a whole bag. It was on sale! Who can resist a sale? Not me, that's for sure. AND...I got PC Points for it! BONUS!!
Hey, I know. I have a frozen pie crust. (Yes...I'm a cheater. I buy frozen pie crusts. They are quick and easy in a pinch...plus, I suck at making pie crust. There you have it.)
So, an excess of sweet potatoes + pie crust = sweet potato pie. Let's do it!!
Sweet Potato Pie
This sweet potato pie has a rich texture and delicate blend of spices. This southern delicacy is easy enough for beginners to make.
1 (9 inch) pie shell, baked
1 lb sweet potatoes, peeled and boiled til soft
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1 tsp grated orange rind (optional - I didn't have it, so didn't use it)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
Just recently, one of my favorite places to grab a bite to eat closed down. The FuzzBox, a great place to get a "down home" donair, has closed it's doors. The owner, Neil (a Nova Scotia native himself), says that he has plans to re-open once he finds a better location and some investors. I, personally, can't live without my donairs until then, so I decided to make my own.
Donairs with Sweet Sauce
1 lb of lean ground beef
1 tsp salt
1 tsp flour
1 tsp ground oregano
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp pepper (I use white)
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 can of evaporated milk
1 can of sweetened condensed milk
2 TBSP garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
4 TBSP white vinegar
4 to 6 thick pitas for wrapping
***serve topped with chopped onion & tomatoes****
Directions for Meat:
Directions for Sauce:
To serve: Warm a frying pan over medium heat. Lightly wet each pita and cook it in the pan, turning until warm and softened.(or microwave for 12 to 20 seconds) Lightly coat a pita on one side with donair sauce. Place some of the meat on the pita and pour more sauce over it. Add chopped onion & tomato before folding and serve.
There's nothing that says "fall has arrived" like the smell of apples and cinnamon baking in the oven. It's one of my favorite kitchen smells!
This year I've decided to step up my fall baking by going out and picking the fruits that I intend to use with my own two hands. Last week my sister and I went to Berryview Farm Apple Orchard.
After we finished picking, we hopped back on the hay wagon and paid for our apples. Then we headed across the street to Downey's Farm. They have a farmer's market, a fun area for kids, and last but certainly not least...Downey's Estate Winery. Of course, I had to buy a bottle of Apple wine. It was just that apple kind of day!
So now the apples are all clean and shiny and sitting there, just waiting to be turned into something delicious! The first thing I tried were these yummy apple muffins.
Recipe from: The Girl Who Ate Everything blog.
2 cups white sugar
1 cup canola or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon vanilla
3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
3 heaping cups peeled, cored and diced apples (I prepare apples once the wet and dry ingredients are ready to be combined)
1/2 cup brown sugar
These are also turn out good baked in mini loaf pans following same directions as above.
1 3/4 cups flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
2 lg eggs
1/2 cup canola oil
3/4 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cup blueberries
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3 TBSP melted butter
It's been a while since I last posted. There have been a lot of developments in my life over the last year and a half that really distracted me from trying new recipes; a major illness, family moving away, life in general...you know how it goes. But now I am well and ready to get back to one of my favorite hobbies. Yes, cooking and/or baking!
In about a month, my sister and I are walking in the "2016 Ovarian Cancer Walk of Hope" to help raise money for a great charity. You can click on my personal link, Jeanne's Personal Page, if you want to know more, or to donate to my walk.
To help raise money for this, my sister and I are putting on a huge "BAKE SALE PLUS" at our work place. The baked goods will be supplied by myself and some wonderful co-workers who have volunteered, and.my sister is making all sorts of fun things, like natural eye cream, little pots of jam, and some other crafty things. We also have some donated prizes and are selling raffle tickets for some lucky person to win. This will be happening in about two and a half weeks.
So, over the next couple of weeks, I will be baking (and freezing) things for the sale, such as cupcakes, cakes, cookies, squares, and so on....there will be a whole lot of baking going on in the day or two before the sale as well. Some things just don't freeze well and need to be baked just before.
Some of the things I am planning to bake are already posted here on my site, but I have plans to try some new recipes as well. Needless to say, if these new recipes turn out great, I will be posting them as well.
Stay tuned for recipes, recipes, and more recipes!
All day I was craving chocolate, but wasn't exactly sure what I wanted. I checked through my baking stock and determined that I had all the ingredients to make a basic chocolate cake.
I didn't want anything fancy, didn't want to have to come up with creative and decorative ideas to pretty it up. I just wanted something chocolaty and moist to satisfy my craving.
This is what I came up with.
Moist Chocolate Cake
2 cups white all purpose flour
2 cups white sugar
3/4 cup of cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup milk
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water
I was born in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia and spent the first half my life there. I became a mom just after I turned 20 and within a couple of years, decided to move from a small town to a bigger city to take advantage of better job opportunities. After a few great jobs, I finally settled in at a legal publishing company. 13 years later, I'm still there.
Cut brownies without the crumbs:
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