Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Thanksgiving Review...and My Birthday Cake

Did everyone have a nice Thanksgiving? We loaded up the car Wednesday night and headed to Indiana to spend the holiday with my family.  We had such a nice visit, ate way too much food, and even did some Black Friday shopping from 12am - 4am!

Just so happens that my birthday fell on Thanksgiving this year.  What a sweet surprise to find out that B made a birthday cake for me! Not just any birthday cake but a Kit Kat and Peppermint cake! And to top it off she baked it so that it was red and white checkerboard inside.  B is in the 6th grade and she's an amazing baker already! Thanks so much for my cake! It looked amazing and tasted even better!!!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

I would like to take a moment and wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving.  As I think back over the past year, I have so many things to be thankful for. I am looking forward to spending this Thanksgiving with my family and enjoying some good home-cooked food and laughter. May your Thanksgiving be filled with family, friends, and happy memories.

I'll leave you with some Thanksgiving goodies that I made in the bakery this past week...

Turkey Cupcakes:

Turkey Sugar Cookies:

Fall Tree Cookies:

and a pumpkin Turkey Cake!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Pay Day Bars

It's crazy that November is half way over already and Thanksgiving is next week!!! Where does the time go?

My sister made these yummy Pay Day bars a couple weeks ago but I held off on posting the recipe because I figured everyone was on candy overload from Halloween. Hopefully everyone's candy stash is depleted because you'll want to give this one a try!

Pay Day Bars
Source: S. Miller

16 oz. jar salted, dry roasted peanuts
3 T. butter
1 bag peanut butter chips
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 c. miniature marshmallows

Spray a 9x13 pan with non-stick spray.  Pour 1/2 of the peanuts on the bottom of the pan.  Melt butter, peanut butter chips and sweetened condensed milk.  Remove from heat and fold in the marshmallows.  Pour over the peanuts.  Put the rest of the peanuts on top and pat down lightly.  Chill and cut into bars.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Banana Jam

This great find came from Pinterest!  As many of you know, I make strawberry freezer jam every summer when the strawberries are fresh and the kids and I can go to a local u-pick farm.  I had never heard of banana jam before! The best part about banana jam is that bananas are available year-round. My kids and I gave this 6 thumbs up and we often times will eat it right on crackers during snack time!

Banana Jam
Source: Mom Foodie at blommi.com

5 c. Bananas, sliced
2 1/2 c. Sugar
1/2 c. Orange juice
2 T. Lime juice
Generous pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Put all ingredients in large pot over medium heat. Once the jam starts to bubble, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring regularly.

While the jam is cooking, place jars, lids and any equipment that will come in direct contact with the jam into the oven. Bake for 10 minutes, then shut off oven, but leave items in there until you are ready to use them.

Once jam is cooked, ladle it into the jars and place lids and screw tops on. As jam cools vacuum will be created and lids will seal (you will generally hear a pinging sound when the seal happens).

Yield: 4 standard jelly jars

Unopened jam can be stored in cupboard.  Refrigerate once opened.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

The Easiest Beef Short Ribs

In the need of a new crock pot recipe? Here's another good one for you! I love adding new recipes to my "Crock Pot Collection" because it's a great resource for those days when I know I'll be in a pinch to get dinner on the table.  This recipe did not disappoint.  It's the first time I've ever bought beef short ribs but they were easy to find in my local grocery store. The meat was so tender that it just fell off the bone! It's great served with rice or mashed potatoes and your favorite veggie.  

The Easiest Beef Short Ribs
Source: Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook

1 T. unsalted butter or olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
3/4 c. ketchup
1/4 c. soy sauce
3 T. cider vinegar
3 T. brown sugar
3 to 4 lb. beef short ribs

1. In a small skillet, heat the butter over medium heat until melted, then cook the onion, stirring, until softened and golden, about 5 minutes. Add the ketchup, soy sauce, vinegar, and brown sugar, stir until smooth, and heat for 5 minutes.

2. Place the short ribs on a broiler pan and broil until well browned. Arrange the ribs in the slow cooker. If you have a round cooker, stack them. Pour over the sauce, distributing the onions over all the ribs. Cover and cook on low until tender and the meat starts to separate from the bone, 7 to 8 hours.

3. Transfer the ribs to a platter. Let the sauce cool a bit, then spoon the liquid fat off the surface and discard. Pour the sauce over the ribs and serve immediately.