Friday, August 29, 2008

If you liked the Blueberry Muffins...

...give this a try. This is the exact same recipe but you bake it as a loaf instead of muffins. When I make it next time I am going to add more sugar and add more than one cup of whatever fruit I use. Oh, yes - and bake it less. 40 minutes of baking was too much for these loaves. But overall, it was a yummy dessert. Perfect for an early afternoon snack.

"Moist Streusel Bread"
3 cups flour
1 cup sugar
3 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cup milk
2 eggs
1 cup melted butter (or 1 cup of oil)
1 cup diced mangoes

Streusel Topping:
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
Preheat oven to 400F. Grease & flour loaf pans. In large bowl, sift flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Stir in milk, eggs, and butter. Mix until flour is just incorporated. Do not overbeat. Gently stir in mangoes. Pour half the batter into each pan.
For topping, combine sugar and flour. Cut in butter until mixture resembles course crumbs; sprinkle half over each loaf. Bake for 40 minutes.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Peanutty Bars

Sorry for not posting in a-while. I haven't been baking that much as of lately. Anyway, today I made these. They are definetly for peanut butter lovers. With a graham cracker crust, a peanut butter filling, and a chocolate frosting - what isn't to like?? Have a great week and I'll see you next with some mouth - watering treats! School starts next week for me...

"Peanut Butter Graham Bars"
11 whole graham crackers
1 - 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup unsalted butter ( I used salted)
2 - 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
3/4 cup smooth or chunky peanut butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
1 - 1/4 cups chocolate chips
Line a 9x13 inch pan with the graham crackers. In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, butter, sugar, peanut butter, vanilla, and salt, stirring until smooth. Spread the mixture evenly over the graham crackers and chill for 1 hour.
When the mixture is chilled, melt the chocolate chips over low heat, stirring until smooth. Pour the chocolate over the penaut butter filling, spreading it evenly over the top. Allow the chocolate to cool until set. Cut into bars to serve.
The way Lewis sleeps. His lastest thing is taking food out of the lazy susan and carrying it around. Wierdo.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

The Winner!

Thanks so much everyone for entering my contest - it was so much fun reading all your entries. Swimming and womens gymnastics were by far the most popular, but those are my favorites too.
The winner of the Taste Of Home 2008 Annual Recipes is.....Stephanie! Her comment was: I was about to say figure skating - my all-time favorite event to watch - but then noticed that you said summer event. That would have to be swimming (I'm right up there with Brooke, from a previous comment. It's all about Micheal Phelps this year!)
What was really fun for me was getting so many is always nice when "all" my readers comment.:) Please e-mail me Stephanie at for your address.
Can't wait for the next giveaway!
"Deluxe Marshmallow Bars" (thanks so much Jaime for this G-R-E-A-T recipe)!
3/4 cup butter
1-1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1-1/3 cups all purpose flour
3 tbsp baking cocoa
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional (I omitted these)
4 cups miniature marshmallows
1-1/3 cup chocolate chips
1 cup peanut butter
3 tbsp butter
2 cups crisp rice cereal
In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla; beat until fluffy. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture. Stir in nuts if desired. Spread in a greased 15 x 10 x 1" pan. (I used a 13x9" pan)Bake at 350F for 15-18 minutes. Sprinkle marshmallows evenly over cake; return to oven for 2-3 minutes. Using a knife dipped in water, spread the melted marshmallows evenly over cake. Cool. (I did not have to spread the marshmallow layer because I used a 13x9" pan, so the 4 cups of marshmallows amounted to an even, single layer of marshmallows)For topping, combine chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter in a small saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until melted and well blended. Remove from heat; stir in cereal. Immediately spread over bars. Chill.Yield: 3 dozen

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Cute Little Desserts & A Giveaway!

These are so good. I was wanting to bake something but not with a lot of ingredients, this was perfect. With two ingredients and really easy to make - what's not to like?? While I was waiting for them to cool for picture taking, my brothers and sister were asking non-stop..."can we have one"??!! As of now, they are almost all gone. If you need something quick and easy give these a shot!! Giveaway at the bottom...
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Brownie Cups(thanks Jenny)

1 box brownie mix 9 x 13 size
1 batch of your favorite cookie dough
Powdered sugar or frosting

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare brownies according to package directions. Pour batter into mini cupcake tins (about 36-40) that have been sprayed generously with cooking spray. Spoon 1 Tablespoon of cookie dough into the center of each filled cupcake tin, gently pressing down into the batter. Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until cooked through. Let cool for 10 minutes before removing brownies from tins. Sprinkle with powdered sugar or frost. Enjoy!
**Instead of using mini cupcake tins, I used the normal size.**
Now, for the giveaway! This is my first ever, so bear with me.:) To qualify, simply tell me your favorite summer olympic sport in the comment section. Deadline ends Friday at midnight and I will be announcing the winner of this "Taste Of Home Annual Recipes Cookbook 2008" with over 500 recipes Saturday. Don't forget to leave me a way to contact you!
No, you don't get my little brother too!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

A Golden Recipe

Blueberry muffins are some of my favorite type of dessert. But lately I haven't been able to get that "perfect" blueberry muffin that fitted my taste buds. That changed. I did a search for jumbo blueberry muffins in google and found this recipe. Wow, they are so good. I read that to have moist muffins you should leave lumps in the batter when mixing. I did that, underbaked these a little and they came out perfect! I had them when they were first warm and they were good but had another one when they were cooled off and they were ten times better. So, if you need a good blueberry muffin recipe, give this one a shot - I gurantee you - you won't be dissapointed.

"Bluelicious Blueberry Muffins"
3 cups flour
1 cup sugar
3 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup blueberries
1 3/4 cup milk
2 eggs
1 cup melted butter (room temp) or oil
Preheat oven to 400F. Grease JUMBO muffin pan. In large bowl, sift flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir in milk, eggs and oil. Mix until flour is not visible. Make sure there are lumps in the batter. Do not over beat. Add blueberries. Bake for 30 minutes or until top springs back and is golden brown. Yield: 2 dozen JUMBO muffins.
**I baked my jumbo muffins for about 20 minutes and they were perfect**

Swinging away at Palm Park in Whittier, California...

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Shakes, Brownies, Photography & More

I never thought I'd like a milkshake with honey, peanut butter, and banana. Whenever I hear a dessert has honey in it, that is usually it for me. I don't make it or I am hesitant to try it. But, when I tried this, my taste buds said get the recipe! And it has what, only 5 ingredients, how easy is that!?! So, thanks to my friend Joss for giving me the recipe. I haven't been able to make it quite as well as she did for me, but hopefully I will be able to with practice.
"Banana & Peanut Butter Milkshake"
1 to 1/4 banana
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon peanut butter
1 tablespoon honey
5 to 12 ice cubes
Put all ingredients in a blender, blend well. One serving.
Now this seriously is not healthy what-so-ever. These are the best looking brownies I have ever made. They were so tall and begging for pictures to be taken. I thought they were a little dry (the rest of the family didn't seem to notice), so will undercook them a little next time. Dry brownies I cannot eat. But, without furthur adoe, here is the recipe:
"Cakey Brownies"
1 cup unsalted butter ( I used salted butter)
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups Dutch process cocoa powder
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
5 large eggs
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional) *I didn't put nuts in my batch*
1 cup chocolate chips (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9x13 inch pan. In a medium sized microwave bowl, or in a medium saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter, then add the sugar and stir to combine. Stir in the cocoa, salt , baking powder, and vanilla, Whisk in the eggs one at a time and add the water, stirring until smooth. Add the flour and nuts and chips, again stirring until smooth. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Bake the brownies for 28 to 30 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. The brownies should feel set both on the edges and in the center. Remove them from the oven and cool on a rack before frosting, cutting, & serving.
"Chocolate Ganache Icing"
1/2 cup heavy cream or whipping cream
1 cup chocolate chips or chopped semisweet or bittersweet chocolate
In a microwave safe bowl, or in a small saucepan set over medium heat, heat the cream until it's very hot. You should see wisps of steam beginning to rise from it, and some very tiny bubbles around the edge. Add the chocolate chips to the cream and stir until smooth. Don't panic - at first, the mixture will look disarmingly soupy, but keep on stirring. Eventually it will become a rich brown, thick, shiny spreadable icing.
**I stirred my Ganache for about 15 minutes and it still wasn't thick enough to put on the brownies so I stuck it in the freezer for about 15 minutes. It was then perfect for spreading. Once I frosted them I then refrigerated then for a little while too.**

Me at the beach in Carlsbad hair flying and all - the beach is simply beautiful.
I really enjoy taking pictures of anything, mainly people and food. This is a picture I took of my friend and then used a program to make it like this:

Monday, August 11, 2008

Not Your Normal Brownie & Awards!

The brownies look good, huh? I saw these on Jenny's blog and for sure knew I had to try them. First bite, I wasn't won over. But after I froze them to harden, they tasted better. At least my brothers like them. One of them was saying "I'll let you play my game on the X-Box if I can have one of your brownies now instead of waiting till they harden." Of course, he did get his brownie, barganing or not! I heard that my oldest brother was saying "these are terrible" but kept on eating them. I know they weren't that bad if he kept on eating them! (Awards are at the bottom of the page).
Crispy Caramel Brownie Treats

1 brownie mix of choice 9x13 size
¾ Cup caramel ice cream topping
3 Cups Mini Marshmallows
2 Tablespoons butter
3 ½ Cups rice crispy cereal
1 Cup semi sweet chocolate chips
2 Tablespoons coconut oil (you can also use heavy cream)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare brownie mix according to package directions. As soon as they are done baking, remove from oven and drizzle with caramel ice cream topping.
2. In a large microwave safe bowl, melt marshmallows and butter until puffed up. Stir in cereal until well combined. Quickly place over brownies and gently spread evenly over top. Place chocolate chips into a medium microwave safe bowl and microwave in 30 second intervals until melted and smooth. Stir in coconut oil or heavy cream until shiny and smooth. Pour and drizzle over top of brownies. Let cool then cut into squares.
12 large brownies
L to R: Anna, Julie, Joss, and me. We took our friends to Knotts Berry Farm and had a blast. We rode this about 6 times - a great big free fall.
Proof that Lewis is getting so much bigger.

Now, for the awards! Barbara over at Barbara Bakes & Theresa over at Baking and Beyond gave me this award! Thanks Barbara and Theresa, I was pleasantly surprised. Do check out their blogs, I always enjoy seeing what they have made lately! I will be passing this on to:

  1. Jessica at Turkey Cookies. Jessica blogs right now about how she spends her summers - at the farmer's market, summer schooling, taking walks, and even about the food she makes! I enjoy reading her blog.
  2. Jaime at Good Eats N' Sweet Treats. Jaime is in the group Tuesdays With Dorie and makes delicious looking food. Her posts every Tuesday are always fun to read.
  3. Rebekah over at Don't Call Me Becky. Rebekah blogs about quilting, sewing, crafts, baking, & cooking. I always enjoy reading her posts.

    Stephanie at Fun Foods On A Budget gave me the Yum Yum award. I didn't even know Stephanie read my blog until she gave me this award! Thanks for the award and I am glad you like my blog. I am passing it on to:
  • Lucy at Sweets, Savories, Etc. Lucy blogs from NY and has fun posts.
  • Brooke at Dessert First. I found Brooke's blog thru another blogger and she has some great recipes there.
  • OhioMom at Cooking In Cleveland. Linda has a neat blog going from Ohio, if you need a zucchini recipe - check her blog out!

    Enjoy guys! And...GO TEAM USA!!!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Sayonara California!

I'm back. I got back at 1 a.m. today. We spent the days with friends, family, eating, at the beach, an amusement park, and a water park. The time flew by "way" too fast, the weather was simply gorgeous, and I had a blast. But as all vacations come to a end, mine had to too. I was born in Whittier, California and got to see where I was born. Neat.
Now, back to baking. Before I left, like all "good" sisters do (right bros)??, I made the boys around 5 dozen cookies before I left. I made the white chocolate chip macadamia nut cookies and then the good ol' chocolate chip cookies. From what I could tell, they liked them.:)

With our friends the Millers: L to R: Anna, Julie, Lisa, Me, and Joss. (Anna and Lisa are my sisters.)
My favorite ride at a water park ever. We went to Raging Waters in San Dimas, CA. And no, I'm not crazy, and yes - it was a blast.
I want to thank everyone for all the comments I got while I was gone, I will be getting back to everyone! Have a great week!