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Category Archives: Pie’s Recipes

Yum-Yum Time!

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Happy Friday All!  It is Memorial Day Weekend for all of us hard working Americans and this is the time we fire up the grills and dust off the patio furniture to kick off the summer and remember those who paid the ultimate price for the reason we can wave our flags high  from our homes.

With any holiday in this house, food is just a given.  I love to cook as much as I love to craft and I think I love to eat more than both combined! So I will share one of my new favorite summer desserts . . . Very Berry Trifle  made with Cream Cheese Pound Cake.

  1. I found the pound cake recipe via Pinterst of course! Once baked, I separate in half and freeze one half for another trifle.  I slice the half I am using in about inch slices and set aside.
  2. To make the fruit base I prep and slice full container of  fresh strawberries and toss in a sauce with about 1/4 cup of sugar and a vanilla bean I split open.  I cook on simmer until the berries are mushy and all the sugar is disolved, fish out the vanilla bean and then puree it using a stick blender.  Set aside to cool.  I also slice another full container of strawberries and wash a small container of raspberries and set aside
  3. Using an instant vanilla pudding I make the pudding per instruction and add the guts of a vanilla bean (I think you are getting I love vanilla . . . I feel this takes a big place for flavor of the usual Brandy or Cognac that is called in most traditional trifle recipes).  I set in fridge to set up.
  4. As the puree and pudding are processing, I take a half pint of whipping cream and add 1/4 cup of powder sugar and whip together using my stand mixer (hand mixers would work fine as well) until it has nice semi firm peaks.
  5. Using  a trifle bowl (any bowl would work) I begin the layering of the  fresh berries, pudding, puree, pound cake, puree, whipped cream, berries, and (very light layer) white chocolate chips in that order.   Let sit in the fridge for about 2 hours before serving and you got yourself a fresh and very yummy dessert that will be a showstopper!

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Ingredients:

  • For pound cake see recipe HERE
  • 1 half pint whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup powder sugar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 package of instant pudding (make as directed)
  • 2 Vanilla Beans
  • 2 containers of fresh strawberries
  • 1 container of raspberries
  • 1 cup of white chocolate chips (use a good quality brand for best results)

Thanks for sharing a piece of “yum-yum” pie with me!

Linking up to:

Gotta Create – Wildly Original Linking Party

The Real Thing – Real Family Fun #15

Happy Geek Week!

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So late last night I randomly found out that this week has been National Engineers Week!   Being married to a Mechanical Engineer, I had to have fun with this even though it is now Friday and the week is almost over. I tossed together some cupcake batter and popped them in the oven and grabbed some heavy cream, powder sugar and some gel food coloring and made a quick frosting.

While the cupcakes were baking, I whipped out some fun cupcake toppers totally on the fly using my Silhouette Cameo.  I found the Pi image online and imported, printed, and cut them in less than 10 minutes. Then I made the argyle sentiment toppers using the tools and color patterns that came stock on my Silhouette software in about 10 minutes as well.  I  have to say I L-O-V-E my Silhouette!  The cupcake toppers were done just as the cupcakes were ready to come out of the oven! PicMonkey CollageThe hubs is pretty happy to have a fun little treat to bring to the rest of the “Nerd Herd”.  I am super happy I could throw this together so quickly to close out a week that honors their genius innovation and brilliance and total logical approach they bring to the world.   The funny thing is, I don’t think any of them have any idea that this week exists nor do they really care, but they will love the fact it is a reason to get cupcakes! 🙂

Thanks for sharing a piece of “honoring the Nerd Herd” pie with me.

Linking Up To:

Sarah Hamer Designs – Link Up Tuesdays

Everyday is an Occasion – Sunday Fundays

Gotta Create – Wildly Original Linking Party

Craft -O-Maniac

Sassy Little Lady Show and Tell Saturdays

Angels Homestead – Saturday Spotlight

Blackberry Vine – Tuesday To Do Party

Chicken Broccoli Alfredo Subs!

Sometimes you just need a quick meal, one you can make in no time flat that meets my three musts:

E. Easy = Exactly what it means.

A. Available = Ingredients you can access easily and are available anywhere

T.  Tasty  = Again, exactly what it means.

My kids love this meal and it is one of those quick meals that shakes up just opening up a box of Hamburger Helper!

This meal could be an easy pair with  leftover grilled or roasted chicken.

  1. All you do is grill up two chicken breasts with a little garlic seasoning and salt and pepper.  Slice it up into small pieces.
  2. Steam up about 2 -3 cups of fresh or frozen broccoli.
  3. Line a cookie sheet with foil or parchment paper and place hoggie rolls on cookie sheet.  Begin to fill sandwiches by adding a layer of chicken, then broccoli, spoon desired amount of pre-made Alfredo Sauce (I find the brand from Trader Joe’s, but your local grocery store will have several brands to choose from) and then layer the top with mozzarella or provolone.
  4. Bake at 350 for about 10-15 minutes (or until the cheese has melted and slightly browned and the alfredo sauce has heated through)

Easy as Pie Trifle

We had a busy day going to the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History ‘s Butterfly Alive exhibit and when we got home I was needing to get dinner started since our really good friend was coming over.  Since it has been so hot here, the house was million degrees so the thought of turning on the oven to make a dessert was just plain insanity.   So as I was rethinking what to serve for dessert I came up with this idea.  Let ‘s just call it the Heavenly Lemon Berry Trifle!

I sent the hubs up to the store to pick up a premade angel food cake and a box of instant pudding. I grabbed a large lemon off my tree and washed and prepped some raspberries and strawberries and pulled out some all natural cool whip (from Trader Joe’s) I had.  Once I had all the ingredients I pulled apart the angel food cake into hearty pieces, mixed up vanilla pudding with lemon juice from a whole lemon and zest of lemon.  I then pulled out the Trifle dish that has been in my family for three generations and began building the trifle one layer at a time and popped into the fridge for about an hour or so before serving.

It was YUMMO and so easy.  It tasted like I spent all day on that dessert and will be a good staple to have on the menu in our house.

For a little extra- here is one of my camera shots of the day at the Butterfly exhibit. I call it “Butterfly Kisses”.  I could not believe my luck on getting this moment of my oldest little one.

Thanks for sharing a piece of “dessert can be easy as pie” with me!

Funny Find Flashback Moment!

My 2 year anniversary with my Cricut Expressions is approaching fast and I happen to find a picture of my very first project I did with it!  I can remember how intimidated I was in using it.  I have to admit, I put it back in the closet for 5 months, because it intimidated me so much (these little boo’s were the best of the batch that were not stuck to the mat and ripped due to my lack of knowledge on pressure and speed settings).  I have come a long way since then, thanks to the help from My Pink Stamper Tutorials I found via “google”.

I make these cupcakes every year with the exception of last year since we threw a huge party and I went a different direction.   Usually, I would pipe “Boo or RIP” on the little chocolate grams tombstone, but in 2010, I decided to cut the sentiment and image and fasten it to the tombstone with the help of a candle-lighter to melt the edge of the chocolate enough to attach the images. They easily peeled off the chocolate goodness to be eaten.

Thanks for sharing a piece of “remembering meeting my bug for the first time” pie with me.

Recipe:

Cricut Cartridge: Simply Charmed (don’t know the size, but guessing around 2 inches.)

Boxed chocolate cupcakes (I used Devils Food Cake)

chocolate frosting

Keebler chocolate grams

Oreo Cookies (made into crumbs)

Halloween candy pumpkins

Mini Patriotic Cupcakes Powered By DIY Solar!

WARNING:  There is a lot of yadda, yadda, yadda, yadding going on in this post! 🙂

Hello!  We are sure busy this week, but I did make time to whip up a batch of mini cupcakes for the hub’s “3rd of July Nerd Herd” potluck at his work.  Why is it called that?  I call his gaggle of colleges “The Nerd Herd”since he is a Mechanical Engineer that works in a manufacturing setting alongside other ME’s Chemists, PhD’s and other nerdy influenced professions.  🙂

Actually, I love being married to a member of the ” nerd herd”, the man can fix and do anything! While the solar sales lady was giving us her pitch a month ago, she said,” Even though you have done your full remodel on this house, there is no way you could install solar panels.”  Well those words birthed a new challenge in him and cost her a sale.  He just installed our solar panels himself instead of handing over thousands of dollars to a 3rd party install company (we ended up paying more than 3/4 LESS than what it would have cost us to go through a solar company; making the pay off drastically shorter!). All he had to do is go pick up the panels, the plans, and get the permit from the city (which can be more of a nightmare than installing the 16 panels).  It took about two weekends of him playing with high voltage and balancing on top of the roof with a couple of friends, but they all faired well.  My job was to keep everyone well fed!  The hubs ceases to amaze me in his ability to take things on and figure it out. He is an amazing provider and partner. I feel bad for the suitors that want to date our daughters a DECADE or so from now… their daddy has raised the bar pretty high. 🙂

So back to the cupcakes as I watch my electric meter run backwards . . . These were super easy to make.  I just found a white cake recipe.  I did add lemon juice and zest from one full lemon to cut through the food coloring bite (it worked!) I then separated the cake batter into two bowls and then added the colors to it.  I also threw in white chocolate chips for a little crunch to the cake. I layered the cupcakes with both colors and baked.

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For the frosting I found a basic cream cheese based frosting and added two more teaspoons of vanilla to cut the food coloring I was using in the frosting.

Room Temp 8 oz Cream Cheese Block

1 lb of room temp butter

3 teaspoons (this is with the added vanilla)

3 cups of powdered sugar

Cream together until fluffy and smooth

I took a gallon sized Ziplock bag and prepped it with the frosting tip and then squeezed out a line of the food coloring down two sides of the bag and filled it with frosting.  I placed it in the freezer for about 15 minutes (since it was hot out) to firm up and then frosted

Thanks for coming and sharing a piece ” of getting a little bit patriotic” pie with me and HAPPY 4th!

It is Not a Piece of Pie, It is a Piece of Cupcake!

So. . . I have been working on a HUGE and I mean a HUGE project for all the moms in my daughter’s co-op preschool.  I am making scrapbooks for about 14 moms so all they have to do is slap pictures from the year in them and be done with it.It will have about 22 pages to each of them and then I will bind it with my Cinch It.   I am a bit worried that my Expressions is going to die on me mid-project since I have been giving it a work-out and I am really having fun learning how to use my Imagine to take some of the load off of my beloved Expressions.  So that is why I have been not competing in any challenges, or doing any special projects for myself.

Now, when I get a little overwhelmed, I find myself in the kitchen or outside doing something active.  Since I am out of commission right now on anything active due to a minor surgery and healing foot issues, I head to the kitchen.  I made these two cupcake recipes and they were soo much fun to make and eat.  It was mainly for “reasearch” for my daughter’s birthday party ideas for next year… Vintage Circus or County Fair theme…

Needless to say the Twinkie and Orange Creamsicle will be on the menu!  I found a cupcake corer at Williams Sonoma for around $5.  It totally worked amazingly well… I was actually surprised how well it worked for how cheap it was.  Just goes to show you, Williams Sonoma knows kitchen needs well!

Twinkie Cupcakes: Click here for the recipe:

Orange Creamsicle Cupcakes: Click here for the recipe:  PLEASE NOTE: I did not use the citrus olive oil and did not sub in anything.  I also used a 13 oz jar of fluff instead of 7 0z.  I found it too buttery for the filling with only 7 oz.

Thanks for sharing a piece of the “pie morphing into a cupcake” pie with me!

Hugs and Kisses Chocolate Chip Cookies

In the spirit of it almost being Valentine’s Day, I decided to start testing some recipe ideas for my little one’s school Valentine’s party.   Since her request was something pink, I thought about making pink chocolate chip cookies and I tried a recipe sponsored by Betty Crocker’s sugar cookie recipe and I did not like them.  I thought of shortbread cookies and that they may be a good option since the recipe did not need to be modified for not having eggs in them, which will compromise the color of the cookies due to the yoke.

I pulled up my favorite recipe by Ina Garten, Barefoot Contessa, and did some modifications.   I guess if you change three things to a orignial recipe, it can be called your own, according to the Culinary Art Institute.  So here it is!  They turned out WONDERFUL and super cute!  Exactly what I wanted!

Recipe: (I stared the items I changed from the original recipe)

Ingredients

  • 3/4 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 5 drops of Pink food coloring or 2-3 drops of red food coloring – depending on the color pink you want. *
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar *
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1-2 tablespoons of milk (to add a tad bit of moisture back into the batter once the flour has been added)*
  • 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips *

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together the butter, vanilla, and food coloring.  Mix until correct color is achieved.  Add 1 cup of sugar until they are just combined. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour and salt, then add them to the butter-and-sugar mixture. Mix on low-speed until the dough starts to come together then add chocolate chips just until they are mixed through.  Dump onto a surface dusted with flour and shape into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic and chill for at least 30 minutes.  This is also good to make ahead of time and pull out each disk at a time.

Roll the dough 1/2-inch thick and cut with any shape cookie cutter. Place the cookies on an ungreased baking sheet or use parchment paper. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the edges begin to brown. Allow to cool to room temperature.

Thanks for coming and sharing a piece of “think pink” pie with me!

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Quick and Easy Comfort Food: Ravioli Lasagna

 

While in the midst of doing a million Christmas crafty-craft projects I am going to take a moment to post a quick and easy comfort food family favorite I came up with this year.  Everyone loves lasagna and everyone loves ravioli, what do you get when you meld the concept of lasagna with ravioli?  A wonderful surprise twists two very classic dishes!   This dish literally takes about 15 minutes to throw together and about 40 minutes in the oven and it tastes like you cooked all day If you would like to freeze it, skip placing it in the oven and just freeze it.  Pop in the oven for about hour covered (pull cover off the last 15 minutes).  This is a great dish to make for a meal to bring for a new baby etc…

Ingredients:

  • Package of ground turkey, ground beef or Italian sausage
  • 3 9-10 oz packages of per-made ravioli (you usually can find them in the refrigerator section – Costco also carries them) I mix it up and add one cheese base ravioli and then a spinach based ravioli for the other two
  • 1 container of ricotta
  • 1 jar of your favorite marinara
  • 2.5 cups of mozzarella cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Spray olive oil

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 425.
  2. Brown meat and while browning meat, bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  3. Add salt and pepper to taste to browning meat.
  4. Once meat is browned and water has reached a boil, toss in the three packages of ravioli into the water and boil for about 3 to 4 minutes (if you toss in frozen boil for about 6 minutes) They don’t need to be fully cooked through, you want them to be very firm and they will finish cooking in the oven. 
  5. While the ravioli is boiling add jar of marinara and bring to a simmer.
  6. Once sauce is at a simmer (which should be within a minute or so) add the entire contents of the ricotta to the sauce and blend well.  Keep stove on low to medium and let simmer until ravioli is done
  7. Strain ravioli carefully so they don’t break and begin the layering process.
  8. Spray a deep baking dish with non-stick olive oil spray (Pam or veggie spray oil).
  9. Start layering with the first layer being the ravioli, then sauce, cheese and then ravioli.  Do this until all the ravioli and sauce is gone.  Top with cheese and place in the oven for about 35-40 minutes.

Serves about 8-10 servings.  Serve with a fresh salad and garlic bread.

Turkey Day Cupcakes!

Hello everyone! I had so much fun today making these with my kiddos.   We made the cupcakes and the toppers! 

Thanks for coming and sharing a piece of “early Turkey Day” pie with me.

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Recipe:

Cartridge: Mini Monograms for circle cut at 1 3/4, 2 3/4 and 2 1/4

Cuttlebug: Distressed Stripes

Paper: Die Cuts with a View – Harvest Gatherings, Recollections cardstock

Glossy Accents

Ink: chocolate – Close to my Heart

Stickles

Wilton lollipop sticks – 4 inches