Friday, October 30, 2009

Mini Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
1 cup LIBBY'S® 100% Pure Pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cream Cheese Filling
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
6 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar


PREHEAT oven to 350° F. Lightly grease or line four baking sheets with parchment paper.

COMBINE flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt in medium bowl. Beat butter and sugar in large mixer bowl on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add pumpkin and vanilla extract; beat until smooth. Stir in flour mixture until combined. Drop by heaping measuring teaspoons onto prepared baking sheets. (A total of 72 cookies are needed for the recipe.)

BAKE for 10 to 13 minutes or until springy to the touch. Cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

BEAT cream cheese, butter and vanilla extract in small mixer bowl on medium speed until fluffy. Gradually beat in powdered sugar until light and fluffy.

SPREAD a heaping teaspoon of filling onto flat side of one cookie; top with flat side of second cookie to make a sandwich. Repeat with remaining cookies and filling. Store in covered container in refrigerator.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Pound Cake

From Cake Keeper Cakes by Lauren Chattman

Makes 8 servings

1 3⁄4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1⁄4 teaspoon ground cloves
pinch nutmeg
1⁄2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 1⁄4 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin purée
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1⁄3 cup milk
1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Coat the inside of a 9-inch by 5-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray and dust it with flour.

2. Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, cloves and nutmeg in a medium mixing bowl.

3. Combine the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and cream with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl once or twice as necessary.

4. With the mixer on medium-low speed, add the eggs, one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Stir in the pumpkin purée and vanilla. Stir in the milk.

5.Turn the mixer to low speed and add the flour mixture, 1⁄2 cup at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Stir in the chocolate chips and walnuts.

6. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Bake the cake until it is firm to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 55 minutes to 1 hour. Let the cake cool in the pan for 5 minutes, invert it onto a wire rack, and then turn it right side up on a rack to cool completely.


Store uneaten cake in a cake keeper at room temperature for up to three days or in the refrigerator, wrapped in plastic, for up to one week.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Slow Cooker Monday - Chicken Curry

1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 each red and green pepper, sliced
1 Tbsp water
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 Tbsp curry powder
3/4 cup chicken stock

Place all ingredients into slow cooker in order listed. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Tennessee Caviar

Tennessee Caviar is a great dip to bring to tailgating, Care Group, picnics, or cookouts! I made it last night for Care Group, and it seemed to be a big hit. Warning, this dip makes a TON, so you want to be sure to have a large group to feed. I don't believe you can half the recipe, but hey, I guess it would be worth a shot!

Tennessee Caviar


2 (15oz) cans of black-eyed peas
1 (15oz) can of black beans
1 (13oz) can yellow niblet corn
1 (13oz) can white shoe peg corn
2 cans of Rotel tomatoes
1 can of chopped black olives
1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 bunch of green onions, thinly slice, include whites and greens
1 (16oz) bottle of Zesty Italian salad dressing

Drain all vegetables very well. In a bowl, combine chopped onions and pepper and all vegetables. Pour Zesty Italian dressing over all of the vegetables and marinate over night. Serve with Fritos.

Candy Corn Sugar Cookies

My family is really into candy corn right now. Who isn't!? So, I thought they would enjoy a twist on the classic candy corn. I got this recipe at "Little Birdie Secrets." Click here to see really great pictures for each step at their site.

Candy Corn Cookies

1 package (18oz.) refrigerated sugar cookie dough
1/2 c. flour
1 tsp. grated lemon zest (optional)
1 1/2 tsp grated orange zest (optional)
yellow and orange food coloring
1/2 c. white chocolate chips
decorating sugar

Step 1. Preheat oven to 350°. Using an electric mixer on low, beat cookie dough and flour until combined. Divide dough into three equal portions.

Step 2. Add lemon zest and yellow food coloring to one portion of the dough. With the mixer on low, beat until blended; set aside. Add orange zest and orange food coloring to another portion of the dough; beat until blended. Leave remaining portion plain.

Step 3. Divide each dough section in half. Roll 1 piece of each color into 12-inch long rope. Transfer dough ropes to a lightly floured surface, side by side, with the orange rope in the middle.

Step 4. Place parchment paper or wax paper over dough; gently roll into a 15x4-inch rectangle. Remove parchment paper. Using a knife, cut dough into 12 equal triangles.

Step 5. Transfer triangles to an ungreased baking sheet, about 1 inch apart. Push a ruler against sides of triangles to straighten edges (I skipped this step as you can see). Bake until lightly browned, 9-11 minutes; let cool for one minute then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Step 6. In a small microwave-safe bowl, microwave white chocolate on high until melted, about 1 minute. Stir. Dip wide end of cookies into chocolate then into decorating sugar. Let stand until set. (I was out of white chocolate when I made these, so I just dipped them in white frosting--it was still yummy!)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pumpkin Waffles

My friend, Julie, posted this recipe on Facebook. It maked me want to run and buy a waffle iron!

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
4 large eggs, separated
2 cups well-shaken buttermilk
1 cup canned solid-pack pumpkin
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
Vegetable oil for brushing waffle iron or cooking spray

Preheat oven to 250°F and preheat waffle iron. Sift together flour, brown sugar, baking powder and soda, salt, and spices. Whisk egg yolks in a large bowl with buttermilk, pumpkin, and butter until smooth. Whisk in dry ingredients just until combined.

In a mixing bowl with a whisk attachment, whisk the egg whites until they hold soft peaks (as in, far softer than the over-beaten whites you’ll see in my picture above). Folk them gently into the waffle batter, until just combined.

Brush waffle iron lightly with oil and spoon batter (about 2 cups for four 4-inch Belgian waffles) into waffle iron, spreading quickly. Cook according to manufacturer’s instructions.

Transfer waffles to rack in oven to keep warm and crisp. Make more waffles in same manner.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Pumpkin Spice Cake

****I made a correction regarding the "gluten-free" label I put on this recipe earlier. It is NOT gluten-free, but is dairy-free. Sorry for the confusion!

My friend Carrie posted this recipe on her blog. Her one-year-old has recently been diagnosed with some food allergies, so Carrie is having to adjust to life with some new food regulations. Her daughter, Kendall, can't have milk or eggs, so dairy-free is a must for now!

I made this pumpkin-spice cake yesterday, and it is delicious! Try it sometime. Seriously, it couldn't be simpler.

Pumpkin Spice Cake


1 box of spice cake mix
1 can of pumpkin
1/2 can of water


Combine all three ingredients in a bowl and mix until smooth. Pour into your favorite cake pan. (I used a bundt!) Bake cake according to the directions on the box, let cool, and serve. For a beautiful display, sprinkle with powdered sugar.

This cake is so good, so moist, and just perfect for Fall. It's a great breakfast or dessert or mid-day snack! Oh, I love pumpkin!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Slow Cooker Mondays - Potato Soup

When I woke up this morning to frost, I thought that a nice warm soup would be a good recipe for today.

8 potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 sweet onion, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1/2 tsp. dried rosemary
1 can chicken broth
2 Tbs. fresh, minced parsley
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground pepper
1 C. 2% or skim milk
1/2 C. all-purpose flour

Toppings: sliced green onions, grated cheese, or crumbled bacon

Sauté the onion in a skillet with a little oil till tender. Add to the crockpot with the potatoes, carrots, rosemary, broth and parsley. Add water to about 2 inches from the top of the crock. Season with the salt and pepper. Cook on high for 8 hours. 1 hour before serving, put milk into a bowl. Add flour and whisk till combined. Add to the soup.

Sweet and Sour Chicken

Here is a yummy and easy supper to fix that I tried out last night! Jonathan and I really enjoyed it, and I will be adding it to my repertoire! I found the recipe on the $5 Dinners blog! This is a great website with lots of great money saving ideas and delicious dinner recipes.

Sweet and Sour Chicken

1 lb chicken breast, diced
2 Tbsp vegetable or canola oil
1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon corn starch
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 (8 ounce) can pineapple chunks, with juice
1 Tbsp vinegar
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground ginger

1. In large skillet over medium high heat, brown the diced chicken pieces in oil.
2. Add diced green bell pepper and garlic and stir-fry for 1 to 2 minutes.
3. In small bowl, whisk together corn starch and soy sauce, then pour the mixture into skillet along with the pineapple chunks, pineapple juice, vinegar, brown sugar, and ginger. Stir together and bring just to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 5-10 minutes, or until sauce reaches desired consistency/thickness.

Serve over brown or white rice.
***I used white rice and added just a few splashes of soy sauce to the water to add a hint of salt.
***This meal was wonderful, but I like lots of sauce, so I doubled the sauce portion, minus the pineapple and pineapple juice. I added some water to replace the liquid that the pineapple juice added.
***Jonathan mentioned that this recipe would probably be equally as tasty using shrimp instead of chicken. I think I may try that sometime soon as we love us some shrimp in this household. I'll let you know how it turns out!

Hope you enjoy!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Zucchini Nut Bread

Danielle posted this recipe on her blog, Dancing by the Light. It looks yummy!

2 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup chopped nuts or raisins
1 cup shredded zucchini
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking powder

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix everything and pour batter into a greased 8 1/2 x 2 1/1 inch bread pan or two 5 3/4 x 3 1/4 x 2 inch pans. Bake until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Bake 1 hour for large and 30 minutes for small.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Nestle Toll House Double Chocolate Chunk Cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup Cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 3/4 cups (11.5-oz. pkg.) Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chunks

Preheat oven to 350º F. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chunks. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.

Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until cookies are puffed and centers are set but still soft. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.
Remember to follow baking instructions before consuming.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing

When I saw this recipe on Domestic Life , I knew I had to share. It looks like a fun treat for kids. I might have to try this one for our next small group meeting at church.

1 18.5-ounce box yellow cake mix (plus the ingredients called for in the package directions)
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree
2 8-ounce bars cream cheese, at room temperature
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
24 pieces candy corn

1. Heat oven to 350° F. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with paper liners. Prepare the cake mix as directed but with the following change: Add the pumpkin pie spice and substitute the can of pumpkin puree for the water called for in the package directions.
2. Divide the batter among the prepared muffin tins and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, 18 to 22 minutes. Let cool.
3. Meanwhile, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and sugar until creamy. Spread on the cupcakes and top each with a piece of candy corn.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Slow Cooker Monday - Stuffed Pasta Shells

18 jumbo pasta shells
1 lb. lean ground beef
1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1 tbsp. parsley flakes
1 egg, beaten
2 jars meatless spaghetti sauce (151/2 oz. each)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta shells according to directions, just until tender and drain. Meanwhile, brown beef, onion and garlic on stove top, drain. Add Mozzarella, bread crumbs, parsley and egg. Stuff shells, set aside. Pour 1 jar of sauce into slow cooker. Arrange stuffed shells in sauce. Top with other jar of sauce and Parmesan cheese. Cover and cook on low 5 to 7 hours.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Apple Dapple

3 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
3 cups self-rising flour
3 cups chopped and peeled apples
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat overn to 350 degrees. Cream sugar, eggs, oil and vanilla. Add sifted flour, nuts, and apples. Pour batter into 9x13 lightly greased glass pan. Bake for 45 minutes.

1 stick butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup evaporated milk

Boil ingredients, stirring constantly for 2 1/2 minutes. Pour over hot cake.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Tex-Mex Potato and Corn Chowder

I am a big fan of soup and Tex-Mex. When I saw this recipe, I knew I had to try it.

1 cup chopped celery
2 tablespoons butter
8 cups peeled and cubed potatoes
4.5 oz can chopped green chilies
1 can corn with red and green peppers
1 pkg no-fat country gravy mix
1 cup chopped onion
2 cans chicken broth
2 cups skim milk
4 oz processed Mexican cheese

In a large saucepan, cook celery and onions in butter over medium heat until tender. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add potatoes. Cook over low heat until potatoes are soft. Stir in corn and chilies and return boiling. Dissolve gravy in milk; stir into boiling mixture. Add cheese, cook and stir over low heat until cheese is melted.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Chicken and Green Bean Alfredo

I found this recipe on the back of can of Del Monte green beans. It looked very simple.

6 oz dried fettuccine
1 - 1 1/4 cups of alfredo sauce
2 cans of green beans
6 oz cooked chicken strips
2 tablespoons of grated parmesan cheese
Fresh basil or sage leaves

Cook pasta according to package directions; drain. Return to saucepan. Meanwhile, heat sauce, green beans and chicken in medium saucepan, stir occassionally. Toss well with hot pasta. Transfer to serving bowl and sprinkle with cheese. Garnish with basil or sage if desired.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Slow Cooker Monday - Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole

Here's another recipe from Slow Cooker Extraordinaire, Joelle.

Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole

Makes 4 to 6 serving / Prep time: 15 minutes / Cook time: Low 3 to 4 hours

2 slices bacon, chopped
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 pounds chicken thighs, trimmed or excess skin (breasts would work well also. Skin or skinless is fine too)
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced celery
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried sage (I used thyme - worked just as well)
1 cup converted long-grain white rice (I used brown rice worked just as well)
1 package (4 ounces) wild rice (I used Royal Blend Rice: Texmati White, Brown, Wild & Red. This really added great flavor and color)
6 ounces baby bella mushrooms, cleaned and chopped (chop fine if your husband and kids hate mushrooms. They never notice)
3 cups hot chicken broth, or enough to cover chicken
salt and black pepper to taste

Microwave bacon on High (100% power) 1 minute. Transfer to crock-pot. Add olive oil and spread evenly on bottom. Place chicken in Crock pot, skin side down. Add remaining ingredients in order given. Cover: cook on Low 3 to 4 hours, or until rice is tender. Uncover and let stand 15 minutes. Add salt and pepper, if desired. Remove skin before serving, if desired.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Tortellini Soup

Here's another yummy recipe from Danielle's blog . I just seem like the perfect Autumn soup!

Tortellini Soup
Sautee 1/2 cup chopped onion and 1 clove chopped garlic in oil in pot.
Cook until they are light brown and translucent.

2 cans of chicken stock
1 can water
1 can drained white beans.
Heat to simmer.

Then add:
1 can chopped tomatoes (undrained),
1 teaspoon vinegar,
1 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce,
1/2 cup chopped fresh spinach,
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian herb blend.
Cook for about 10-15 minutes.

Approx. 10 minutes before serving add:
1 bag frozen cheese tortellini and
2 Tablespoons fresh basil finely minced
1 tablespoons shredded parmesan. cheese.

Turn on low and cook 10 minutes.
Serves 6-8 hearty servings.