Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Crispy hashbrowns

With all of the celebrating that is going to be going on tomorrow night, I figured we might need a hangover helper (I'm not going to claim that this is a cure!) for the morning after.  Hashbrowns are very easy to make, have a really nice crunch, and are simply perfect with a hot cup of coffee, a fried egg, and lots of ketchup.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Nutella Truffles

I really enjoy making candies and little confections, but there are a couple of times per year where this love really shines - Valentine's Day, and the Holidays.  I love to play in the kitchen, and give homemade gifts, so I try to make something really special if I'm going to give it as a gift.  As much as I enjoy doing this, though, there are just some times where your pantry is running low, you don't want to break out the candy thermometer, or you just don't feel like destroying your kitchen trying to put together something impressive.  Believe me, I've been there.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014


For years and years, I have wanted to try to make a croquembouche (a fancy, French term for a cream puff tower), but I always talked myself out of it, saying that they were just too big to make, and no reason special enough to go through the effort of making one.
Well, this year, I decided that I wasn't going to talk myself out of it anymore!  I was, however, going to scale it way back, and do a very small tower, so that I wouldn't be wasting anything.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Easy peasy broccoli and cheese soup

I love broccoli and cheese soup.  And I mean llloovvveeee broccoli and cheese soup!  I love broccoli, I love cheese, and I love soup!  What's not to love??  I love to curl up on the couch with a big bowl, grab some oyster crackers and dig in!
The problem that I have, is that I'm the only one in my house that likes it.  The easy solution I have, is that since my husband travels often, I get to eat this a few times every winter!  The best part, is that this takes less than an hour to put together, and I get to eat off of it for days!
This one is going to go by pretty quick, so let's get started!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Hot chocolate with homemade marshmallows

Hello everyone!  I don't know what the weather is like where you are, but the cold weather has officially come to stay here, and I couldn't love it more!  I love the whole snuggle under a blanket on the couch with a dog (or two...or three...or, in our case, five...), with a hot cup of either tea or hot chocolate.  While there's nothing wrong with the powder mix, they tend to be a little bit grainy and gritty, and just a little bit flat.  Which can be disappointing, especially when you are wanting hot chocolate for a special occasion, like Christmas morning, a winter party, maybe a kids sleepover or something along those lines.  

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Pressure cooker beef stroganoff

Like I was saying on Tuesday, I love stick to your ribs meals during winter, and it is hard to find a meal that fits into that category more  than this one!  I love beef stroganoff, but my husband doesn't care for it (he doesn't like mushrooms or sour cream), so I usually make it when he's out of town.  Just so happens, he's out of town!
That being said, with trying to keep up with a 3 year old, and putting her to bed while getting supper together for myself...well, if it weren't for my pressure cooker, beef stroganoff would just not happen.
However, I do have a pressure cooker, therefore, I do have beef stroganoff!  

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Chicken pot pie

Hello, everyone!  Happy Tuesday!  I'm a big time seasonal cooker, and I don't just mean cooking with foods that are "in season" (although I do that, too); I mean, I cook certain foods more during certain seasons.  For me, winters are filled with soups and stews, and some heavier comfort food!  Chicken pot pie certainly fits that bill!  This hearty, rustic dish is flavorful and stick to your ribs comfort food!  This pot pie comes together very quickly (not including the time it takes to cook the chicken), feeds an army, and is very impressive looking, making it great for entertaining!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Chocolate Peppermint Pinwheel Cookies

Baking cookies during the holidays are a common family tradition, and that certainly held true in my house, while I was growing up.  We usually baked chocolate chip cookies, my chocolate chip oatmeal cookies, and these, just to name a few.  These may seem a little bit more involved, but, once you have made them, they really aren't that difficult.
My Dad and I saw Alton Brown make this recipe on his show, "Good Eats" many, many years ago, and we decided to make these together, and they have been a staple ever since!  

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Turkey and kale soup

I love soups in the winter!  They're a great way to stretch your protein, and a wonderful way to clean out your fridge of veggies that need to be used.  If I'm rummaging around the fridge, and notice that I have some veggies that need to be used up, I just toss 'em into a pot with some chicken stock, and simmer until done.  Boom!  Healthy, easy, and yummy!