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Saturday, November 26, 2016


When I was a kid my mother had many flowers, bushes and trees. She loved them all but one that I remember very clearly is her Geraniums. Why you may ask?? Well, in the summer time these flowers looked great on the patio but when the weather turned colder the plants were moved inside to my room. If you are not familiar with Geraniums they have an odor that to some (including me) is not a wonderful scent. 

Geranium plants love sunlight so if you are growing your plants indoors then you will want to find a place they will gain lots of sunlight and be in a place where the temperature is between 65 and 70. Geraniums demand basic care Water should be done deeply and when ever the soil feels dry. Once the plant out grows the pot they will need re-potting.

Winter Citrus Cake

3/4 cup butter, room temperature

1 cup sugar
2 eggs
juice and zest from 2 Meyer lemons
juice and zest from 2 clementines or mandarins
1 cup flour
1/2 cup almond flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
large pinch salt
2/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
powdered sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a springform pan with cooking spray and a circle of parchment paper in the bottom.
In a mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes.
Add eggs one at a time, mixing very well after each egg.
Add citrus juice and zest and mix again. (At this point it may look lumpy, but don’t worry.)
In a bowl, whisk together flour, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add half of the flour mixture to the butter and eggs and mix gently just to combine. Add yogurt and mix again. Add remaining dry ingredients and mix just to combine. (Don’t overmix or the cake will be tough.)
Pour into prepared pan and spread out evenly. You can also slam the pan on the counter to even it out.
Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes, until a toothpick or knife comes out cleanly.
Let cool, then unmold and dust with powdered sugar.

Happy Birthday to Charles

Celebrating birthdays is so super fun, especially if your best friend would be a black and white beagle known as Snoopy. Yes, Charles Monroe Schulz the creator of the "Peanuts" comic strip and characters would have celebrated his birthday today November 26. Schulz was born in Minneapolis Minnesota and worked as an illustrator and comic writer for 50 years. 

In those 50 years Schulz drew over 18,000 comic strips and Schulz earnings was in the millions each year. The main character of Schulz that drew so much attention was a funny looking kid named Charlie Brown. Charlie Brown first appeared in comics in 1948 in an early comic strip line by Schulz known as Lil Folks October of 1950 Charlie appeared in his own strip Peanuts.

A Bit About Charles Schulz

Schulz enrolled in an art school by mail after seeing an ad in 1930s. The school helped Charles learn important skills through course work. He would later be hired to instruct this same sort of class

Schulz served the United States Army during World War II. He believes that is what helped him gain his confidence

so happy Birthday Charles Schulz thank you for leaving us with a handful of characters that if you had not created we would have never met

Friday, November 25, 2016

Don't Forget To Floss Your Teeth

One question that people often dread to answer during their annual or semi-annual visit to their dentist is "did you floss". It is important to brush twice a day and floss at least once a day. Not brushing or flossing can lead to serious dental health. 

What teeth do you need to floss?? Well only the ones you want to keep. 

Flossing is important because just like brushing removes plaque and food from the teeth Flossing helps to go between the teeth and below the gum line where food and plaque builds up. Some do not floss because they do not think that the food gets stuck in their teeth. However, flossing also gets rid of plaque and everyone gets rid of plaque every day. Plaque needs removed to prevent gum disease and tooth loss. 

The American Dental Association states it is best to floss before bed each night. The floss should be up to 18 inches long allowing easy flow between all teeth. Wrap around one finger on one hand and one on the other hand and using your thumb and forefinger use a rubbing motion to guide between teeth. Using both curved and up and down motion floss your teeth.

Not flossing for a while will leave a slight bit of blood in your mouth. Inflamed gums where plaque has built up is the problem. Flossing should help take care of this and lessen the bleeding. The back teeth is the place where most tooth decay and gum disease takes place so be sure to clean area properly.

Leftover Turkey is Great in Corn Chowder

This leftover turkey corn chowder comes together in about 30 minutes and is a meal that will please the entire family. While it is made with leftovers you will never know it

2 cups shredded leftover fully cooked turkey (may sub shredded leftover fully cooked chicken)
2 15-ounce cans cream style corn
1 15-ounce can sweet yellow whole kernel corn
3 cups low sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth
1 celery rib, chopped
1 red bell pepper, diced
2 cups cubed golden or red potatoes
1½ teaspoons Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt and pepper to taste

In a large stock pot combine cream style corn, whole kernel corn, broth, celery, bell peppers, potatoes, Italian seasoning, and garlic powder.
Cover and simmer over medium heat for 20-25 minutes until potatoes are tender and easily pierced with a fork.
Stir in turkey and season with salt and pepper. When turkey is heated through, serve and garnish with fresh parsley or thyme as desired.

Its a cookie, brownie and cupcake with ganache all in one oh my so good

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough stuffed Brownie Cupcakes with Chocolate Ganache

Oh my something to please the sweet lover in all of us The rich and decadent treat is also very easy to make It is a recipe that everyone can help out with and taste test as well as the cookie dough does not call for eggs. 
makes approx. 16 cupcakes
printable version
For the Cookie Dough:
3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
3/4 cup white sugar
1 cup (8oz.) butter, melted
1 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips
6 tablespoons whole milk

For the Cupcakes:
8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar

3/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened Dutch process cocoa powder

For the Ganache:
8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped (chocolate chips are ok)
1cup heavy cream

First you'll need to prepare the cookie dough as it needs to harden up in the freezer for a few hours prior to baking the cupcakes.  In the bowl of a stand-up mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, stir together the flour, salt, brown sugar, and granulated sugar. Add butter and vanilla. Mix until a dry dough forms.

Add chocolate chips and mix on lowest speed. 

Once the chips are thoroughly mixed into the dough, add the milk 1 tablespoon at a time with the machine on the lowest speed. 

Roll the dough into balls, about 1 tablespoon each.  Continue rolling the dough until you have about 16 pieces.  Place balls onto a cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil and freeze for two hours, or until firm.

Our freezer is too narrow to fit a cookie sheet so I had to take the shelf out, line with aluminum foil and place the balls of dough directly on top.

To prepare the brownie batter, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.  Line a muffin tin with paper liners.  

thank you Kristin I LOVE these liners, so cute!

Place chocolate and butter into a heatproof bowl and set over a pan of simmering water.  Be sure to not let the boiling water touch the bottom of the bowl.  Stir occasionally until the chocolate and butter are melted, about 4 to 5 minutes.

Remove bowl from heat.  Whisk in sugar and salt until mixture is smooth.  Add eggs and whisk to combine.  Gently whisk in flour and cocoa until smooth.  Do not over mix.

Using a tablespoon (or cookie scoop) fill lined tins about 2/3 full with the brownie batter.  Take the cookie dough balls from freezer and place one ball in the middle of each cupcake, pushing down slightly, but no need to fully submerge. 


Bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the brownie portion of the cupcake comes out clean.  Do not test for doneness through the cookie dough.

Transfer muffin tins to a wire rack and let cool before removing the cupcakes from the pan.

To prepare the ganache, transfer chopped chocolate to a heat safe bowl.  Place heavy cream in a small saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer.  Remove from heat and pour cream on top of the chopped chocolate.

Do not stir at this point.  Let the chocolate and cream sit for 10 minutes.  Using a whisk, combine the cream and chocolate until smooth and shiny.

Take the cupcakes and flip up-side-down and swirl in the ganache to achieve an even coating.  Turn right side up and place on a cookie sheet until the ganache hardens, about two hours.  To speed up the process cupcakes can also be transferred to the fridge.

*I find these are much better served cold as the cookie dough can become quite soft if let out too long.


 Cookie dough recipe courtesy of Sprinkle Bakes

Brownie Cupcake recipe courtesy of Martha Stewart

Pumpkin Mousse and Spice Cake Parfait

Pumpkin Mousse & Spice Cake Parfait

That's right I know this recipe is a Thanksgiving recipe and yes it is the day After Thanksgiving.  Are you aware that today is Parfait day?? Well , it is so we decided to share this with you today. 

Pumpkin inspired recipes are perfect for Autumn. That seems a bit unfair when pumpkin recipes are delicious at other times as well. After all, chocolate is not only for Valentine's day so why should pumpkin only be seasonal. 

Canned pumpkin is used in this recipe and many other pumpkin dessert recipes as well. Pumpkin is available in the can year round. Many that bake also agree that canned pumpkin is much tastier as well, has a nice consistent texture and is easier to work with. 

Pumpkin Mousse & Spice Cake Parfait
makes 6-8 single serving parfaits, depending on your glass size

For the pumpkin mousse:
1 envelope (1/4 ounce) unflavored gelatin powder
1 (15 ounce.) canned pumpkin
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups well-chilled heavy cream

For the spice cake:
4 tbsp. (2 ounces or 1/2 stick) unsalted butter, plus extra for buttering the pan
3 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup cake flour
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

For the brandy syrup:
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup brandy or cognac (I used Cointreau which went beautifully with the pumpkin)

For the toasted pecans:
½ cup pecan pieces (I used slivered almonds since I wasn't able to find pecans.  They were just 'ok' would definitely recommend using pecans though)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

For the topping: (I topped with fresh, whipped cream.  However you can also top with ice cream, your preference)

whipped cream:
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


1 pint caramel ice cream


To prepare the mousse, put 1/4 cup cold water in a small heat-proof bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over the water.  Be sure to actually sprinkle the gelatin and not just dump it in to avoid clumps. Set aside for 10 minutes for the gelatin to soften. 


Meanwhile, set the bowl of softened gelatin over a pan of simmering water and cook until the gelatin is clear.

Immediately whisk the hot gelatin mixture into the pumpkin mixture.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream until soft peaks form.

Fold the whipped cream into the pumpkin/gelatin mixture. Chill for at least 3 hours or overnight.

To prepare the spice cake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and then line bottom of 9-by-13-inch rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang at each end. Grease the paper with butter.  I use a plastic baggie as a glove to make things easy.

Line a fine mesh sieve with cheesecloth (I used a coffee filter, also works great). In a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-low heat, melt 1/4 cup butter. Do not stir, but watch carefully. Eventually, solids will drop to bottom of pan. When they are dark brown, remove butter from heat.  

Strain through cheesecloth (or coffee filter) into a medium bowl. 

*If you're using a coffee filter you might notice the butter will s l o w l y make its way through the filter, this is normal. I gave the filter a gentle twist once it was almost empty to push the last of the butter through. 
Set aside and let cool until lukewarm.

In the metal bowl of a standing mixer, whisk together eggs and sugar to combine. Set bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water and whisk constantly until sugar has dissolved and mixture is warm to touch, about 3 minutes.

Return bowl to mixer base. Using whisk attachment, beat at high speed until mixture has tripled in volume and has consistency of softly whipped cream (about 5 to 10 minutes, depending on mixer).

While eggs are being beaten, sift cake flour, salt and spices into a bowl.

Whisk to combine, and set aside.
When eggs have tripled in volume, turn off mixer and remove bowl from stand. Sift one third of flour mixture over eggs and use a rubber spatula to fold in gently.
Sift and fold in remaining flour in two more additions. Stir 1 cup of batter into browned butter.  Quickly fold butter mixture into remaining batter until just combined.

Pour batter into prepared pan, spreading evenly with a rubber spatula.

Bake in middle of oven until top is browned and cake shrinks away from sides of pan, about 12 to 15 minutes. Invert onto rack, peel off parchment and cool. 

To make the brandy syrup, in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat, stir sugar with ¼ cup water until sugar has dissolved. Add brandy. Let cool and refrigerate, covered.

To prepare pecans, in a small skillet over medium heat, melt butter.

Add pecans and cook, stirring, until toasted, about 3 minutes.

To prepare the whipped cream topping (skip this step if you will top them with the caramel ice cream) pour whipped cream into a well-chilled metal bowl of a stand-up mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment.  Whisk on the highest speed until soft peaks form.  Turn off mixer, add sugar and vanilla.  Continue to beat until stiff peaks form.

To serve, trim 1/8 inch from around edges of cake. Cut cake into 16 squares. Put 1/4 cup mousse in bottom of each of 8 glasses and spread slightly. Sprinkle 1/2 tablespoon pecans over mousse and add a square of cake. Brush cake with brandy syrup. 

Repeat one more layer as before; mousse, pecans, cake, brush with brandy. Repeat for remaining glasses.  Top with either caramel ice cream or freshly whipped cream.


recipe source here

Black Friday did you go

Did you go?? Where you may ask?? Anywhere that black Friday deals can be found. I have went in the past but this year because I had to work I did not go to the stores but rather tried online. I got a few good deals was not as exciting but all in all I did find some great deals. If I am able to and choose to attend the Black Friday sales at the stores next year there are a few things that I will try to do and not do

First, have a plan of how much you will spend and just because the crowds will be full and the temptation is for real you can do it. You can stick to your plan of what to buy and mind you budget as well. Spending too much and going in debt because of this one shopping day is not worth it. I have heard stories of others paying off the debt over the next year.

Last year I had an issue with an employee and one of the sales. She was delibertly trying to tell me that I could not get what I wanted and was trying to limit the amount, There was no limit and I knew it so I went to ask the manager who quickly fixed this issue. While workers are understandably under stress and may not have the time to do all they normally do on most days stand up for yourself and if you have questions ask those in charge. NO need for debates or stress

While the shopping night may be a bit crazy and the crowds terrible you should still be respectful. Talk and say hi, the night will be more pleasant for you as well as those around you.

Remember to have fun, its a great day to find awesome deals. Such a great day to enjoy yourself and share with those you love and shopping for all those on your list

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving

From our Family to yours may you all have a Happy Thanksgiving. It does not matter where you are or what day it is for you we all have something to be thankful for