Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Chocolate Mint Polka Dot Cookies

I first saw this recipe from Baked Perfection and went on a MASSIVE hunt for Guittard Green Mint Chips. I went to every World Market around me (about 4) I finally found them and it made my day. What didn't make my day was a few months later I walked into Safeway and in the holiday baking section there they sat. SIGH.

These cookies were very, very good. Matt described it as a combination York peppermint patty and a Thin Mint.  Sounds good to me!!

2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips ( I used milk chocolate because it was what I had)
1/2 c. butter
1 1/2 c. flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
3 eggs
1/2 c. sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups Guittard Green Mint Chips

Preheat oven 350
Melt chocolate chips and butter - set aside to cool.

Combine flour, baking soda and salt.
In mixer beat eggs, sugar and vanilla until light.

Blend in melted chocolate then the dry ingredients.

Stir in green chips and chill for 15 mins
Scoop onto cookie sheets

Bake 8-10 mins.

I doubled this batch and made TONS.

I was a little disapointed that a lot of the green chips didn't show up as much as I thought they would, but the cookies were still great. I am sad I didn't get to share these at the cookie exchange - they would have been a huge hit!

I am linking this up with Bake at 350's Flavor of the Month - which happens to be COOKIES :-D

Monday, December 28, 2009

Peanut Butter Kisses Cookie

This pic the cookies were rolled in sugar in the raw - I didn't take one of the in regular sugar :(

This recipe comes from Matt's mom by way of his grandma. This is also the one cookie that I can't not eat. All the other cookies I can ignore and walk right by, but these are so good I have to really try hard not to have 4 or 5 a day! :-D At least I am running 12-13 miles a week and can run off those extra cookies.

These cookies are super easy, and very good. I recommend you try them. They would be great if you have little helpers who can stick the Hershey kiss in the middle.

1 c. butter
1 c. crunchy peanut butter ( we only had creamy this time - no difference in my opinion)
1 c. sugar
1 c. brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 c. flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
Hershey Kisses

Unwrap a bunch of Hershey Kisses(or have your assistant take a break from playing hockey and do it :-D )

With mixer on medium speed beat first 6 (RED) ingredents until fluffy.


On low speed add last 4 (GREEN)
Shape into balls and roll in sugar.

Place 2 inches apart and bake at 350 for 12 mins.

Immediately add kisses

This recipe makes a lot - about 40 depending on how big you make your cookies. I also experimented with rolling one batch in sugar in the raw, but I didn't like it. It made them harder, regular sugar you don't even notice is on the cookie.

You have to try these! I promise they will be great!!!

Also - Don't forget to vote for the recipe you want to see - I am taking it to a New Years Eve party!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Fun Stuff!

A while ago I signed my blog up on MyBlogSpark. It allows companies to contact you if they want you to review their products on your blog. You aren't required to do them, and if you do it and don't like it you don't have to write about it either. Basically it can be as much or as little as you want! 

So, a little bit ago, Pillsbury® contacted me asking if I wanted to review their Pillsbury® Refrigerated Crescent Rolls or Pillsbury Crescent Recipe Creations® refrigerated seamless dough sheet. I said sure! I got the coupons in the mail today! So I want your input on this. 

It was suggested that I post 3 recipes and let my readers vote on which one I make with my own little twist. These are holiday recipes and since I just got it today, I am certain I won't get to making anything with the dough until after Christmas. So I will post the recipes anyway and you can vote. Then I will make them and report back to you with my thoughts on the recipe and pictures of course!

Vote for one of these recipes on the side poll.

Voting will go until the beginning of next week - then I will make a creation to share with everyone! And, announce details for a giveaway! FUN!

If you have suggestions for ways I should change these leave them in the comments - I promise to give credit to you if I use your idea! 

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Big Snow of 2009

19 Inches + a little more. It was so pretty, and I am very glad it happened on a weekend so I could spend the day inside baking. That is exactly what I did!! It may take me a little bit to get everything blogged but I made a lot of yummies - most of which are being given away as gifts, what is leftover is going to the grandparents house for Christmas day snacking!!

Big Snow Baking Day 2009 includes:
Chocolate Chip Cookies (in cookie form not cake form)

I guess I love peanut butter!! I also want to try and make Ms. Beth's peanut brittle - but when I was at the store I forgot to get corn syrup and with the snow coming it took me 2 hours to get a couple things - I wasn't going back. Maybe I will get it done before christmas - I hope. Check back for the recipes soon. There is also a very yummy dinner post to come. (probably after the new year)

* Peanut butter canes are typically called buckeyes but there is a reason for the name change - will explain in the post. :-D

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Simply Potato Latkes

[Printable Recipe]
This recipe is so super easy - and very good. I like a little garlic salt and sour cream with mine.

1 Simply Potatoes package
2 eggs
2t tbsp. flour or matzo meal (we always use flour for these)
1 tsp. salt
pepper to taste
1 small onion, grated
1/2 tsp. baking powder

Mix all ingredients together and fry. Drain on paper towels.

That is not my hairy arm for the record :-D

** these pictures I found on my camera from Hanukkah 2008 - I only have the cooking and the draining steps- no clue what happened to the others.

Latkes (potato pancakes)

Happy Hanukkah!!  

I love that I get to celebrate Hanukkah and Christmas! Since Matt and I started dating 3.5 years ago we have had a tradition of making latkes and Hanukkah cookies every year for Hanukkah. In the past we used a simple recipe that was very good, but not a true Latke. I will try to get that recipe posted for you as well, but I am not sure I will make both this year. If so I will add pictures to the recipe. This year Matt's mom sent me her latke recipe - and I hope I can make it as well as she does. Having never made them it was hard to know if I had the consistency right, Matt tried to help decide. In the end he said they turned out great so that is good!

[Printable Recipe]
2 eggs or more ( we used 2 in the blender and 1 more to make it thinner )
3 cups grated drained potatoes ( we used 4 potatoes - 3.25 lbs)
1 onion, grated
salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste
2-4 tbsp. matzo meal 

vegetable oil (we used canola oil)

Wash and cut the potatoes and grate the onion

 Place 1 egg in blender then add some of the cut up pieces of potatoes, onion.

After each addition, drain in colander or strainer. Don't strain out all of the liquid but strain a good bit.

Repeat each process always starting with egg first until all potatoes are done.
Add salt and pepper and matzo meal (we used 1.5 Tbsp of matzo meal).
May need to taste to determine amount of salt and pepper and check texture to determine amount of matzah meal. You want it to be thick. It is really hard to describe the texture. It is like a thick pancake batter, but with more texture, thinner than oatmeal. It reminded me a lot of the texture of the rice cereal I feed the twins. Since I had never made it before we did 1 first to see if we had the texture right.

Heat oil.
Drop potato mixture into hot oil by teaspoonfuls. Flatten them down a little

Fry until golden brown on both sides.

Drain on paper towels.

Serve with apple sauce or sour cream.

These were so good. I am glad they are only a tradition 1 time a year because they were SO greasy. But 100%  worth it. I will run it off tomorrow. :-D

I debated posting this recipe. It was difficult and very much a game of trial and error with a couple calls to Miami to ask Matt's mom for help. But in the spirit of the holidays I am posting it. Feel free to try it- if you want help email me and I will offer help. It was totally worth the work, so good! I am going to post the simply potatoes latke recipe too - it is much easier and faster.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Caramel Brownies

Is it Care-A-Mel, Car-Mul, or Care-A-Mul. Matt and I have a longstanding debate - I am a car-mul girl, he says care-a-mel. We also disagree on what my first car is called ( he is probably right - but I'll never call it a Tour-Us, it was a Tar-us)

This is super easy, and quick to make too! The longest part was unwrapping all those stinking caramels. This recipe was adapted from bake at 350

[Printable Recipe]

2/3 c. evaporated milk, divided
14 oz package of caramels
3/4 c. butter, melted
1 pkg German chocolate cake mix
1c. chocolate chips
1/2 c. chopped pecans ( I skipped this cuz I ran out from the pecan pie )


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Melt caramels with 1/3 c. evaporated milk over low heat.
Combine the melted butter, remaining 1/3 c. evap. milk and cake mix.

Spread 1/2 of the batter into an ungreased 9 x 13 pan.
Bake for 6 mins

Sprinkle with chocolate chips (and pecans if using)

Spread melted caramel over top of the chips.

Drop remaining batter onto the top

Bake for 15-20 mins (I baked for 18)

Don't over bake- you want them to be a little gooey!!