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Friday, September 14, 2012

Plate-Size Cookies, Resized

Plate-Size Cookies, Resized

Hi everybody :)

I woke up this morning with a serious sweet-tooth attack. This led me to my cookbooks. In a time like this the only cure is COOKIES. I love baking cookies more than anything else. My favorite cookie is Oatmeal.
So I started out looking for the BIGGEST oatmeal cookies I can find. One that's full of craisins, walnuts, coconut, and chocolate, all my favorite ingredients in an oatmeal cookie.

And I thought I might had succeeded.... 
Plate-Sized Cookie

until I had to reevaluate my choice....  (see What I Did and/or Think below)

Plate-Size Cookies adapted  The Fannie Farmer Baking Book

1 cup vegetable shortening (I used Butter-Flavored Crisco)
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
3 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 cup chopped nuts (I used walnuts)
1 cup raisins (I used dried cranberries or craisins)
1 cup grated coconut
1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate morsels (I used Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chips)
3 cups uncooked oatmeal (not instant) (I used old fashioned oatmeal)


Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease your biggest cookie sheets.
Combine the shortening and sugar in a very large mixing bowl, and beat until thoroughly blended.
Beating Shortening and Sugar

Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then add the vanilla and water, and beat well. Stir and toss together the flour, salt, and baking soda.
Dough after adding the Flour

Add them to the first mixture and beat until completely mixed Add the nuts, raisins, coconut, chocolate morsels, and oatmeal, and stir until blended.
Cookie Dough

Using a 1/3-cup measure, scoop up pieces of dough and scrape them onto the prepared cookie sheets about 4 inches apart.
4 Cookies on a Sheet Pan

With your moistened fingertips, flatten each blob of dough into an even round about 4 1/2 inches across and 1/4 inch thick Bake for 15 to 20 minutes (watch them carefully), until the cookies have spread and are golden brown all over. Remove from the oven and let cool on the sheet for a minute, then using a wide spatula transfer them to rack to cool completely.

What I Did and/or Think:
I started off following the directions in the recipe using a 1/3 cup measure to scoop out the cookies, doing that I only cook 4 cookies at a time.  For a golden brown color I let my cookies cook for 9-10 minutes. I also use my Silpat Baking Mat. Cooking the cookies for 15 minutes as stated in the recipe cause them to be over-cooked. The cookies were great but they was thin, and being so big cause them to be difficult to move without coming apart.

They had to be resized. So I use my medium OXO Good Grips Cookie Scoop to scoop the dough out between chilling it. Bake at 350 degree for about 8 minutes and PERFECT-O! I had nice chewy cookies although not plate-sized, but totally worthy of a REPEAT!
Regular-Sized Cookies

ENJOY! Come again....

Linking to
Not Your Ordinary Recipes: Foodtastic Friday
Whipper Berry: Friday Flair Link Party 
The Better Baker Weekend Potluck
Sweets for Saturday @ Sweet As Sugar Cookies
Show Your Stuff
Foodie Friday @ Simple Living 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Wheat Germ Crackers: The 3 S (Salty, Sweet, or Savory)

Wheat Germ Crackers: The 3 S (Salty, Sweet, or Savory)

Hi everybody :)

This is a first for me, in all the years I been baking, I never made crackers before! I don't know what took me so long to start, but now that I did; this wouldn't be the last time. I love baking cookies but it didn't occur to me to bake my own crackers until now. I seen some interesting crackers recipes on Pinterest too and even pinned some of them, so it still hard to believe.

This recipe comes from my collection of cookbooks. I thought it would be a great heart-healthy recipe to share because it contain wheat germ and oatmeal. I may be wrong....but I'm giving it a try anyway. So here we go...  

Wheat Germ Crackers adapted  Pure & Simple: Beta Sigma Phi

3 cups oatmeal (I used old-fashioned oatmeal)  
1 cup wheat germ (I used toasted wheat germ)
2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup water
Salt to taste

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix first 5 ingredients in bowl.
Dry Ingredients

Mix in mixture of oil and water.
Water & Oil

Water Added to Dry Ingredients

Divide dough into 3 balls.
Dough into 3 Balls

Roll out each ball on cookie sheet. Cut into cracker size. Sprinkle with salt.

Bake for 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Yield: 48 crackers.

What I Did  and/or Think:
I downsized the recipe to make half. I wanted to have a little fun with the recipe. I divided the dough into 3 balls as stated above. With the first ball; I sprinkled coarse salt on top of the crackers as stated.

The second ball I sprinkled the top of the crackers with cinnamon/sugar mixture and

for the third ball the top with Mrs. Dash Onion & Garlic Seasoning and Salad Supreme.

I used my heart-shape cookie cutter and bake them on my Silpat Baking Mat.

The dough was shiny because of the oil and was easy to work with after refrigerating for about 30 minutes.
Because of the oatmeal and the wheat germ the dough is brown already so be careful when baking them to avoid over-browning.

The taste: The crackers overall have a nutty crunchy taste. The salted crackers remind me of wheat thins and would go great with cream cheese spreads or chicken salads  The cinnamon/sugar crackers had a lightly sweetened taste to it and would be great with peanut butter. The savory crackers had a nutty, onion, earthy taste and would be perfect for meat and cheese trays.

Although this goes without saying, but I'm going to say it anyway...y'all know what this recipe is....IT'S A REPEAT!

If you haven't made homemade crackers before, this is a easy recipe to try out. Don't put it off like I did :) Get in the kitchen NOW...HURRY and make some crackers! :D Have fun and experiment with the toppings, I would love to know what flavors you come up with.

ENJOY! Come again.....

Shared with: 
Lady Behind the Curtain: Cast Party Wednesday: Link Party #58
A Little Nosh: Tastetastic Thursday
Show Case Your Talent  @What's Cooking Love 
BYOB @ girlichef: BYOB - Bake Your Own Bread
Full Plate Thursday @ Miz Helen's Country Cottage
What's Cooking Wednesday

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Pork Chops in Sour Cream Sauce

Pork Chops in Sour Cream Sauce

Hi everybody :)

I'm a meat lover, once upon a time I thought about becoming a vegetarian because of health issues. I DO love my fruits and vegetables too, but I think everything in moderation will balance itself out in the end.  Now I'm making smarter choices about what I eat. Being a food blogger is helping me out with those choices by   giving me the chance to create and explore all the different varieties of foods and how it's prepared. I get to try new ideas and share them with you :)

The recipe I'm sharing today is from my collections of cookbooks. I picked this one because the sour cream sauce caught my attention and since I had all the ingredients already on hand, I thought it would be perfect for dinner tonight.

Pork Chops in Sour Cream Sauce adapted Pure & Simple: Beta Sigma Phi

6 loin pork chops
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
2 tablespoons catsup
1 clove of garlic, minced  (I used Freeze Dried Garlic)
1 beef bouillon cube (I used Better Than Bouillon Beef Base, reduced sodium)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup sour cream

Brown pork chops in large skillet.
Browning Pork Chops

Add next 6 ingredients.

Next 5 Ingredients

Reduce heat; simmer for 30 to 40 minutes or until tender.
Pork Chops with the 6 Ingredients Added

Remove pork chops to serving platter; keep warm. Combine flour with 1/4 cup water in small bowl. Add slowly to cooking liquid, stirring constantly. Cook until thickened.
Cooking Sauce until Thickened

Stir in sour cream. Heat through; do not boil.
Adding Sour Cream

Serve over pork chops. Yield: 6 servings.

What I Did and/or Think:
Please forgive my late post. I been really busy.

I only cook four pork chops, used Freeze Dried Garlic and Better Than Bouillon Beef Base instead of garlic clove and beef bouillon.

Now for the pork chop, I was very please with this dish. The cream had a nice slightly tangy taste to it, not overpowering the meat. The meat was tender and juicy. This made a GREAT dinner so it will be going into my REPEAT file

ENJOY! Come again....


Linked to  
Mandy's Recipe Box: Totally Tasty Tuesdays
Tuesday-Talent-Show:  Chef In Training
Kathe With an E You're Gonna Love It 
 33 Shades of Green-Tasty Tuesday
Trick or Treat Tuesday: Inside BruCrew Life
Tasty Confessional: Crafty Confessions

Monday, September 10, 2012

Fruity Applesauce: More than Just Apples

Fruity Applesauce: More than Just Apples

Hi everybody :)

Today recipe is a really super easy one, I can't believe I haven't already shared it. It's great for summer days and when you want a nice refreshing treat. The best part is you get to fix it any way you want. Kids will LOVE it too. If you're health-conscience, you don't have to miss out on the fun, because it can also be sugar-free.

Are you tired of buying the fruit-flavored applesauce in the store with the ONLY FRUIT in it is apple?
Your problem can easily be solve.
By making your own.... here we go...

Fruity Applesauce
1 cup  Applesauce (I used store-brought but I'm sure homemade can be used too)
1/4 -1/2 cup Fruits your choice;  Fresh, diced or sliced  Canned, drained or Frozen, partly thawed
One of the Followings:  (optional)
1 teaspoon Jello: any flavor or same as fruit
1 teaspoon powdered Kool-Aid: any flavor or same as fruit , sweetened or unsweetened
2 Tablespoons Fruit Juice: Fresh, Canned or Frozen; any flavor or same as fruit
Few drops Food Color: any color or same as fruit

Mix all the ingredient together and chill about 1 hour and serve. If you're using frozen fruits skip the chill part and enjoy :)

What I Think:
This is just a guideline recipe,so feel free to adjusted it to your liking. Have fun mixing and matching or choose a color or flavor theme. For a nice cool sensation, these are also great frozen. Here are some of my favorites:

For the Fruity Berry Applesauce
Frozen Mix Berries (Strawberries, Blueberries and Raspberry ( I get this from Sam's Club)
Raspberry Jello
Follow as directed above.
Fruity Berry Applesauce

For the Fruity Orange Applesauce:
Frozen orange juice concentrate or orange-flavored Kool-Aid
Canned mandarin oranges
Follow as directed above.
Fruity Orange Applesauce


For the Fruity Kiwi Applesauce:
Kiwi fruit
Lime Jello
Follow as directed above.
Fruity Kiwi Applesauce

ENJOY! Come again...

Linked to:
Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms: Melt-in-Your-Mouth Monday Recipe Blog Hop # 82 ,
Jam Hands: Recipe Sharing Monday #27  
Just Something I Whipped Up
This Week Cravings: Mom's Crazy Cooking
Flour Me With Love: Mix it up Monday!
Must Try Mondays: My Favorite Finds
Jaime @ Mom's Test Kitchen  
My Meatless Monday: My Sweet and Savory

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Apple Toffee-Banana Rum Bread: Breakfast Is Served

Apple Toffee-Banana Rum Bread: Breakfast Is Served

Hi everybody :)

Welcome to another Breakfast Is Served Sunday, last Sunday I didn't post one. If you're just tuning in to my blog every Sunday I post a Breakfast Is Served, today you're in for a treat. The last Breakfast Is Served is found here.

Today recipe comes from my collection of mini cookbooks, I occasional picked up while standing in the checkout line at the store, right next to the CANDY BARS. I think they cleverly put them there for people like me :) It's all part of a conspiracy people, to get us to spend more money, and I fall for it every time.... hook, line, and sinker :) oh well...

While looking through one of the mini book, I saw this interesting banana bread recipe. I knew I had to give it a try, so here we go...

Apple Toffee-Banana Rum Bread

Makes 2 loaves

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
3 2/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons rum or 2 teaspoons rum extract
1 egg
1 cup mashed ripe banana (about 3 medium bananas)( I used two bananas and 2 small Granny Smith apples; peeled and diced; 1 cup)
3/4 cup apple,  peeled, cored and diced
1 cup chopped nuts (I used walnuts)
1 1/3 cups (8-oz. pkg.) HEATH BITS 'O BRICKLE Toffee Bits, divided (I only used 1 cup)

Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 x 2 1/2 inch loaf pans.

Stir together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in large bowl.
Dry Mixture

Add milk, oil, rum, egg and banana; stir with spoon until well blended.
Wet Mixture

Stir in nuts. Spread 1 1/4 cups batter in bottom of each prepared pan. Top each batter with 1/2 cup toffee bits.
Batter with Toffee


Gently spread about 1 cup remaining batter into each pan. Sprinkle remaining bits over batter.

Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted into center comes out clean. (Bread will sink slightly in center.) Remove from oven to wire rack. With knife, loosen bread from sides of pan. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans. Cool completely.

Source: HERSHEY'S Holiday Favorites 2005 Edition

What I Did and/or Think:
The recipe didn't call for apple, but I thought it would be a nice addition, and it was, but I'm sure it would still be great without it. I bake this in a heart-shaped 10 cups bundt pan at 350 degrees for 50 minutes, instead of 2 loaf pans. I made a cream cheese glaze to drizzle on top.

Now for the taste, it was GREAT! I made this last night before I went to bed so the flavors can mellow overnight. It did just that! Banana bread is always better the next day; in fact the longer it sit the better it gets. This recipe is most definitely going in my REPEAT FILE!

For the Cream Cheese Glaze:
2 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon milk
1/4 cup powdered sugar, sifted
Whisk all together and add 1 teaspoon vanilla, if you like,  drizzle over bread.

ENJOY! Come again.....

Linked  to:

Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms: Melt-in-Your-Mouth Monday Recipe Blog Hop # 82
Jam Hands: Recipe Sharing Monday #27  
BYOB @ girlichef: BYOB - Bake Your Own Bread
Flour Me With Love: Mix it up Monday!
Jaime @ Mom's Test Kitchen
Sundae Scoop @ I Heart Naptime   
Scrumptious Sunday Recipe Link Party @ AddictedRecipes
This Week Cravings: Mom's Crazy Cooking 
Must Try Mondays: My Favorite Finds
Nifty Thrifty Sunday 
Everyday Moms Meals
Sundae Scoop @ I Heart Naptime  
Scrumptious Sunday Recipe Link Party @ AddictedRecipes 
Think Pink Sunday @ Flamingo Toes Get Your Party On