Saturday, November 28, 2009

Imported recipes

Just to let you know...

I've imported some recipe posts that I had on my personal blog, All Things Clarinda.

Importing recipes is really neat, because they keep their original posting dates.  Makes this blog seem like it's 3 years old already. :-)

Hope you enjoy the *new* recipes.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Christmas Goodies Recipe Exchange


Jeanette, over at Sweet Jeanette, is hosting a recipe exchange on December 15th. Blog your favorite Christmas goodies recipes, and then hop over to her website and link your recipe to her site.

I'm excited to share my recipes...and hopefully find some new favorites.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Spicy Surprise Chocolate Chip Cookies

I got this recipe from the back of Ziploc(R) box. It has intrigued me for more than a year. Cayenne pepper in chocolate chip cookies?? I cut out the recipe, knowing someday I'd give it a try. Well, someday finally came. These have a very unique flavor that I feel really complements the chocolate chips. I did make a couple of changes to the recipe, which I'll note in parentheses in the recipe below. You can choose which to make.
Tale of Two Sisters and Their Kitchens | Spicy Surprise Chocolate Chip Cookies
Click here for Printable Recipe

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened (I used 1 cup shortening)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsps vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour (I used 2 1/2 cups of flour blend which consists of 2 parts white flour, 2 parts wheat flour, 1 part wheat germ, and 1 part ground flaxseed in place of the flours in this recipe)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375F.
Combine butter, brown sugar, sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Beat until smooth and light.
In a separate bowl, stir together flour baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cayenne pepper.
Gradually mix into butter mixture. Beat just until combined and smooth.
Fold in chocolate chips until combined. Scoop cookies into 2-inch balls and place on cookie sheets.
Spicy Surprise Chocolate Chip Cookies
Bake until lightly golden, about 10 minutes.
Tale of Two Sisters and Their Kitchens | Spicy Surprise Chocolate Chip Cookies
Let cool slightly, then remove from cookie sheets and transfer to a wire rack to cool further.

I found it relatively easy to overbake these cookies. They may not look done, but if the edges are golden brown they are. They will flatten as they cool.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Super Simple Chili

Last night I actually planned ahead and got dinner ready in the Crock Pot before heading to class. I made the simplest chili ever, and it was so tasty. Jeff especially loved it.

Click here for Printable Recipe

  • 2 cans Turkey Chili, plus 3 cans of water
  • 2 cups black beans, not drained
  • 1/2 can diced tomatoes, slightly pureed
  • 1/4 cup minced onions
  • scant 1/4 Wahoo Chili
  • scant 2 T Garlic Garlic
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Not pictured:
  • cayenne pepper, to taste
  • onion powder, to taste

Mix all ingredients together in a Crock Pot, or slow cooker.
Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours.
Tale of Two Sisters and Their Kitchens | Super Simple Chili
My husband loves soupy chili, so this is really thin. Adjust the amount of water to satisfy your family's tastes.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Denise's Holiday Cookies

I LOVED these cookies when I was growing up. My older sister would make them during the holidays, and they were so tasty. I had some leftover Halloween plain M&Ms, and these cookies sounded so yummy that I thought it would be a perfect way to use up the plain M&Ms plaguing my cupboards. I wasn't sure that Jeff would like them, so I was surprised to find them on the coffee table this morning when I woke up. Husband approved!

Click here for Printable Recipe.

  • 3/4 c Shortening
  • 3/4 c Sugar
  • 3/4 c Brown Sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 3/4 c Flour
  • 1 tsp soda
  • 3/4 tsp Salt
  • 2 c Coconut
  • 1/2 bag of Holiday M & M's (I used Halloween)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Cream shortening, sugar and brown sugar.
Add eggs and vanilla.
Sift dry ingredients together and add. (I just added the dry ingredients directly to the mixture, to save on washing yet another bowl). Add coconut and M&Ms.
Spoon dough on to baking sheets. You can use two regular teaspoons, or I prefer using a scoop like the one shown in the picture below.
Bake at 350°F  for 10-12 min. The recipe I got from my sister didn't have a temperature on it, so I guess at 350°F. Her recipe indicated a baking time of 15-25 minutes, but my cookies were quite done in 10.
Tale of Two Sisters and Their Kitchens | Denise's Holiday Cookies

Friday, November 13, 2009

Cinnamon-Blueberry Muffins

I love muffins for breakfast! Or lunch or a snack... I was really in a mood for some yesterday, so I found a recipe for some blueberry muffins in my KitchenAid cookbook. I didn't have the specific ingredients, so here is my slightly altered recipe. I thought these muffins were super tasty, but Jeff didn't much care for them. I think it was the cinnamon-sugar sprinkled on top. Too messy. I think next time I try these, I'll just add cinnamon to the batter and bake it in rather than sprinkle it on top.

Click here for Printable Recipe
I made a half batch of muffins, so only one egg is shown in picture
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) plus 1 T butter, melted, divided
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup plus 2 T sugar, divided
  • 2 T baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange peel
  • 2 cups blueberries (fresh or frozen), rinsed, drained
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 400°F. Generously grease 24 muffin tins.

Combine eggs, milk, and 1/2 cup melted butter in mixer bowl. Using flat beater, mix until well combined, about 30 seconds.
Combine flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder, and orange peel.
Add flour mixture to egg mixture. Mix just until combined, about 15 seconds.
Add blueberries and stir just until blueberries are incorporated, about 15 seconds.
Spoon batter into muffin tins. Bake at 400°F for 24 to 26 minutes or until wooden pick inserted near centers comes out clean.

Combine remaining 2 T sugar with cinnamon in small bowl; blend well. Brush tops of warm muffins with remaining 1 T melted butter, then sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture. Serve warm.

Yield: 24 muffins.
Tale of Two Sisters and Their Kitchens | Cinnamon-Blueberry Muffins

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Delicious Homemade Bread

The other day, I decided to bake some homemade bread. I have a lot of ground flaxseed that I need to use, and we needed bread, so it just seemed logical. I scoured the Internet for a recipe that seemed easy and appealing but found nothing. I did find a Q&A about whether or not ground flaxseed could be used in place of wheat germ. The answer was yes! I decided to modify a recipe I had for Whole Grain Wheat Bread from the KitchenAid cookbook that came with my mixer. This bread turned out so yummy! Even Jeff raved about it. :-)

Click here for Printable Recipe.

  • 1/3 cup plus 1T brown sugar, divided
  • 2 cups warm water (105°F to 115°F)
  • 2 packages active dry yeast
  • 5 to 6 cups flour blend (For 6 cups of blend, combine 2c all-purpose flour, 2c whole wheat flour, 1c wheat germ, 1c ground flaxseed)
  • 3/4 cup powdered milk
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup oil

Dissolve 1T brown sugar in warm water in small bowl. Add yeast and let mixture stand.

Place 4 cups flour blend, powdered milk, 1/3 cup brown sugar, and salt in mixer bowl.
Using bread hook, mix for 15 seconds on Speed 2. Continuing on Speed 2, gradually add yeast mixture and oil. Mix for an additional 1 1/2 minutes.

Continuing on Speed 2, add remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until dough clings to hook and cleans sides of bowl, about 2 minutes. Knead on Speed 2 for about 2 additional minutes. Dough may not form a ball on hook. However, as long as hook comes in contact with dough, kneading will be accomplished. Do not add more than the maximum amount of flour specified or a dry loaf will result.

Place dough in a greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover. Let rise in a warm place, free from draft, about 1 hour, or until doubled. I usually turn my oven on to the lowest setting for about 1 minute, then turn it off and let the bread rise in the oven. Bread is doubled when you put two fingers in the dough about 1/2" and the indentation remains.

Punch dough down and divide in half. On a lightly floured surface, roll each half into a rectangle, approximately 9x14 inches. A rolling pin will smooth the dough and remove gas bubbles. Starting at short end, roll the dough tightly. Pinch to seal the seam. Pinch the ends and turn them under. Place the dough, seam side down, in a greased loaf pan. Cover loaf pans. Let rise in warm place, free from draft, about 1 hour, or until doubled in bulk. This time, I just let them rise on the stovetop, not in the oven, so that I can preheat the oven after about 45 minutes of rising.

Bake at 400°F for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F and bake 30 minutes longer. Remove from pans immediately and cool on wire racks.
Tale of Two Sisters and Their Kitchens | Delicious Homemade Bread

Sorry for the lack of photos in this post. I haven't quite figured out how to take pictures while my hands are covered in sticky bread dough!


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