Happy Saturday

Saturdays are usually crazy and I am running around chauffeuring the kids back-and-forth to their sports or their friends or some other activity. This was the first weekend in a long time where I did not have to do any of that or at least not all of it. I decided to bake a little and cook a little and put some stuff away for the week that would make the week a little easier to get through. I consistently try to make banana bread once a week as I buy bananas and refuse to waste food, so they end up being homemade bread. I also decided since the weather was cool and the flu seems to be going around that I would make some homemade chicken noodle soup. Then I got an itch for some chocolate and decided to make fudgy chocolate brownies because they’re not something that I make all of the time or hardly ever. The kitchen smells lovely. The front door is open for cool air and a breeze and a bottle of rose made its way to the counter and I had a glass (or two) for once and enjoyed the day. Cheers to quiet Saturdays – I like this.

Move Over Rover

The holidays are finally over.  Thank God.  We can put our houses and lives back together.  Return to cooking normal meals and desserts.  Peace and tranquility have been restored.

I love cleaning supplies.  Products, vacuums, brooms etc.  I have two vacuums for my OCD.  One is a Dyson the other an Oreck.  I love them both.  However, the Dyson is on its last leg.  Some 10 years later, it’s finally like No I’m good use the other guy.

I recently took it apart because there has been this heinous squeaking sound coming from it that causes my little dogs to howl and my little Fred the bunny cringes every time I turn it on, LOL.

I am going to replace it with another Dyson.  My Oreck is wonderful but it doesn’t have a hose or any tools so it doesn’t do the little things I need it to do.

I have been scouring Amazon for new Dysons for weeks now.  I will make a decision in the next coming weeks and I am sure I will be absolutely elated when it finally arrives.

At my age it’s the little things in life.  Vacuums!!!!!

Christmas Swap

I participated in the Food52 Holiday Swap for 2018.  I participated last year too.  This year was extra special for two reasons.  I kept my swappee from last year and we decided to swap with each other this year.  Nadia and I stayed in touch and decided to swap with each other.  Last year I got her and she got someone else to send to.

My swappee this year was Suzanne the VP of Content for Food52.  I was delighted with what she sent.  Yummy homemade goods and cute kitchen items.

Nadia loved the box I sent to her and I am waiting to receive hers.

It really is a joyous thing, when you can get foodies to set aside some time and create these wonderful boxes for you to receive filled with the homemade delicacies and thoughtful holiday items.

Surprise Me

What could be better than a cupcake, but a cupcake with a surprise in the center.  I recently had a Christmas party and I had a candy table.  Needless to say, I had a ton of candy leftover thanks to every other flat surface in my house being covered with food or drink.

I don’t like wasting food or drink, so I always find something to do with the leftovers.

Homemade yellow cupcakes with a little piece of chocolate in the center of each one!

So easy, so yummy and it creates so many smiles and buckets of happiness.

Italian Fried Fritters

I have been recipe testing to prepare for Christmas.  Every year I make the kiddos doughnuts.  Fried and covered in powdered sugar goodness.

Frittelle:

  • 2 cups flour, all-purpose
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 3/4 tsp dried yeast
  • 8 oz water, lukewarm temperature
  • 1 tbsp orange or lemon juice
  • 1 tsp orange or lemon peel
  • rum soaked raisins (optional)
  • oil for deep frying
  • powdered sugar for coating

Special equipment: deep fryer (or wok or pot), tongs

Put the yeast in the water and set aside for 5 minutes.

Place the flour, salt and sugar in a bowl and mix together. After the yeast is ready, pour the water and yeast mixture into the bowl along with the juice and peel, and mix by hand until a very sticky dough forms (if using rum-soaked raisins, add them at this time).  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until at least doubled.

Place the oil in a pan and turn to medium.  Drop a small of dough into the hot oil to make sure it’s ready.  The dough will be sticky so don’t be alarmed.  Pull out about 2 tablespoons worth and put a hole in the ball and drop into the oil.

They’ll float to the top when they’re done and turn golden brown.  Place on top of paper towels and sprinkle with a generous amount of powdered sugar.

Homemade Christmas Goodies

Since I love to make cookies during the holidays it becomes super fun to gift them as well.  Keeping in mind that not everyone loves chocolate I do quite an assortment of non chocolate and chocolate cookies and bars.

Today happened to be the chocolate day.  Magic bars, peanut butter blossoms and chocolate crinkles.  Tomorrow is meringues and slice and bakes.  The other day it was molasses and salted caramel.

The Dollar Tree sells cookie tins and they’re super cute and affordable and make great packaging!

So bake away and ship them off to the near and dear ones in your life!

Salted Caramel Cookies

These are so yummy.  I have a lot of friends who don’t like chocolate so this cookie is a great alternative for sure and it makes a ton!!!  Enjoy!!!

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Cream together the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Dissolve baking soda in hot water. Add to batter along with salt. Stir in flour, caramel chips. Drop by large spoonfuls onto ungreased pans.
  3. Bake for about 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until edges are nicely browned.