Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Cranberry-Apple Sauce

*If you haven't liked my page on facebook, go do it! There are mini-posts more often than full blog posts on here!*

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving! SUPER excited! I've already started my prep to make things easier tomorrow. Prep numero uno? Tossed some ingredients into my bread machine for a white bread with ground sage and thyme in it for the dressing. It was so wonderful already having that done by the time I got home from the office. Prep numero dos? Cranberry! I've got a can of jellied cranberry for hubs, since he just INSISTS that Thanksgiving isn't the same without it, but I have to have something real. Hence, this recipe. I love cranberries! Plus, this is just so pretty.

1 cup fresh cranberries
3/4 cup granny smith apple, peeled and diced small
2-4 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon juice

Are you ready for this? Super difficult sauce.. Throw everything into a small-ish sauce pan. Turn it on medium/medium-low. Put a lid on it. Walk away from it for about 5 minutes. 

Come back, stir gently, repeat walking away and stirring occasionally until desired consistency is achieved. Taste the sauce (carefully, it's hot!) for sweet, add some sugar if you would like it sweeter. Keep in mind that less is more! Now, breathe. You did it! I'm so proud. 

Next, focus on enjoying the rest of your dinner! 

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Snickerdoodle Cookies

I love my sister dearly, but she can not cook. Period. As in, she's set the oven on fire before. Generally she's not allowed near one. Somehow though, a couple of years ago, she managed to get a batch of snickerdoodle bars in the oven, and they came out HEAVENLY. My husband, who is lover of all things snickerdoodle, declared them the best he's had. Snickerdoodles have always been one of my weak spots. I have no idea why, I just can't get them right. Well. I have finally succeeded tonight (whether he concedes or not!)! These are light, fluffy, and literally melt in your mouth. Oh, these are dangerous cookies indeed. 

1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cups sugar
3/4 cups brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp lemon extract
2 eggs
2 3/4 cups flour
2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
Additional sugar and cinnamon for rolling

Preheat oven to 400º.

Cream butter and sugars. Add extracts and eggs, mix well. Add in remaining ingredients (except for sugar/cinnamon for rolling) and mix until everything is combined. Chill for 15 or so minutes. Once chilled, form 1-2tbsp balls (I use my 1.5 tbsp scoop for uniformity) and roll in cinnamon/sugar. I use 1/4 cup sugar + 1-2tsp cinnamon. You can most definitely change this to your preferences though! Sometimes I like to get festive and use colored sugar even. Place balls onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes, until edges are just BARELY beginning to get golden. Remove to a cooling rack or piece of parchment/wax paper on your counter top. Enjoy! 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Double Chocolate Coconut Cookies

I have failed you all. Miserably. I've been baking like crazy over the last couple of months, but there hasn't been much posted. With little E here now, I just haven't had more than 5 minutes (which is about how long it takes to whip up a batch of dough!) to do anything when I'm at home. I've been making small batches of almost everything I make. Except gingerbread.. But that's another post. Don't worry. That will come. Anyway. I had a hankering for chocolate last night. Cookie form is the best way to get some down my throat usually, or brownies. Cookies won this battle though. And I happened to have to move some coconut to get to my chocolate chips. Why not? These are chocolatey and fudgey and delicious. Not that I'm saying I've done it or anything, but these just might make a mighty tasty (albeit not-so-healthy) breakfast.

1/4c vegetable shortening (Crisco)
1/4c + 2tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 egg
2 tbsp cocoa powder
1/2c flour
pinch of salt
1/4tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp corn starch
1/4c chocolate chips
2 tbsp shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 350º.

Cream shortening, sugar and vanilla together, add egg and whip until fluffy. Add remaining ingredients and mix until well combined. Drop by spoonfuls onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 10-13 minutes, until the top is barely wet still. Let cool on baking sheet, and transfer to a cooling rack or a piece of parchment on the counter.