Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Apple Oatmeal Cookies with Brown Butter Frosting

Yum!  When I saw this recipe, I knew it was for me!  Apples, oatmeal, butter, cinnamon= yes please!  I love  soft cookies, and these are fantastic.  There's a really good picture-by-picture tutorial on the blog that I got the recipe from.  What a fun way to use apples in a cookie.  I hope you enjoy!

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 6 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour + 1 tablespoon
  • 1 cup quick cooking rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup peeled, diced apple {I used a fuji}

For the frosting:
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon milk {approximately}
  • cinnamon, for garnish if desired

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheet with silicone baking mat or parchment paper and set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars together until light and fluffy. Stir in egg and vanilla. Slowly incorporate all dry ingredients. Stir in oats and apples. Scoop onto prepared sheet and bake 8-10 minutes or until the edges are golden.
While cookies are baking, place 1/4 cup butter into small saucepan. With heat on medium, melt and brown the butter. Once the butter is a medium brown/amber color remove from heat and pour into a small bowl. Stir in powdered sugar and enough milk to get a spreadable consistency.
Frost warm cookies and sprinkle with more cinnamon, if desired. Serve.

Creamy Country Chicken with Vegetables

I hope I'm convincing you that slow cooker meals can be delicious, and are a perfect compliment to the busy lifestyle.  They also make great meals for having guests over, like I did last night.  I cut this recipe in half and it seemed to work out just fine (the full version is listed below).  It also made great leftovers tonight.  I hope you enjoy!

Makes 8 servings
  • 4 whole bone-in chicken breasts (about 2 1/4 pounds), halved
  • 3 cups cubed potatoes (about 1 pound)
  • 3 cups baby carrots (about 1 pound)
  • 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 packages McCormick (or similar) Chicken Gravy Mix
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp thyme leaves
  • 1/4 tsp poultry seasoning or ground sage
  • 1 cup sour cream
  1. Rinse chicken and pat dry.  Place potatoes, carrots, and onion in slow cooker.  
  2. Top with chicken, overlapping slightly.
  3. Mix gravy mixes, water, salt, thyme, and poultry seasoning in small bowl.  Pour over chicken and vegetables.  Cover.
  4. Cook eight hours on LOW or four hours on HIGH until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are tender.  Do not remove cover while cooking.
  5. Place chicken and vegetables in serving dish.  Stir sour cream into drippings in slow cooker with a wire whisk.  Pour over chicken and vegetables.

Found on Pinterest! 

Banana Cake

Instead of the traditional banana bread, I opted to use my leftover bananas for this delicious cake.  This recipe is from my sister's college roommate, and ever since I first had it, I've been craving that buttery, brown sugar crust.  (I'm a sucker for butter and brown sugar!).  I think I over baked mine by a minute or two, so make sure you're checking it with a toothpick.  But, my co-workers loved it!  I hope you enjoy.

Banana Cake
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cups Crisco (shortening)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 4 Tbsp. buttermilk or 4 Tbsp. milk and 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • 3 very ripe bananas
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup brown sugar packed
  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine (melted)
Mix sugar, shortening, egg, flour, vanilla, baking soda, buttermilk, smashed bananas, and salt in a large bowl until smooth. Spray a 9"x13" baking dish and pour in mixture.
Mix brown sugar and melted butter. Pour this on top of cake mixture. Don't worry if it is really thick and you have to spread it on top.
Bake at 325 for 40-45 minutes or until golden brown and the cake is still moist but not liquid. 

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Airplane Baby Shower

So, for my sister's baby shower, I went with an airplane theme since my sister is an aerospace engineer and flies airplanes, it was an obvious choice.  However, creating a baby girl themed baby shower was a little challenging.  All-in-all it turned out great with a little help from Pinterest and my favorite fabric store.  

I really loved how the airplane onesie craft turned out!  I traced the airplane design onto one side of Heat Bond n' Lite iron-on permanent bond paper.  I then cut out the airplanes (roughly) and ironed that onto the wrong side of the fabric.  I then trimmed out the airplane shape.  At the shower, the guests would peel off the paper backing, stick their design where they desired, and iron on the design for a permanent hold.  I also used printable onesie lablels (Free printable here) for the guests to iron on.

The mom-to-be and our goddaughter

I made my first diaper wreath using a wooden wreath frame found at Hobby Lobby.  I wrapped newborn baby diapers all the way around, tying them with alternating pink and baby pink ribbon.  I added the "Mommy's co-pilot" and "Future Pilot" tee and bib to continue with the theme.

We served spinach and artichoke dip (recipe on my blog), fruit salad, veggies and dip, chicken salad and ham salad sandwiches, Chex mix, airplane-shaped sugar cookies, and of course, cake!

It was a wonderful afternoon- now if only my niece would get here soon!

Maternity Hospital Gown

So, some of the reason for my lack of trying new recipes recently is my lack of a kitchen table which has been converted to my sewing table.  With my niece on her way, I decided to make a maternity gown for my sister for her stay in the hospital.  I followed the tutorial by Bella Bama, here, found through Pinterest.  It was really fun and easy to make with lots of room for creativity if you want to add ruffles, bows etc.  Sorry I didn't take step-by-step pictures, but if you have any questions feel free to contact me.

Pork Carnitas with Pico de Gallo

It's been awhile since I've cooked a new recipe.  But, no worries, I have been cooking a lot of my blog favorites.  I always crave Mexican food especially juicy, carnitas, yum!  Slow cooking the pork is so convenient, and the pico de gallo is really easy to throw together if you already some of the ingredients on hand.  I cut the recipe in half since it is just me and Tim, but feel free to make the whole recipe for a group.  I hope you enjoy!

  • 5-6 lb pork shoulder or butt roast
  • 3 cups of orange juice, or 3 large oranges, juiced
  • 2 limes, zest and juice
  • salt and pepper
Pico de gallo:
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, deseeded and chopped
  • 1/2 white onion, chopped
  • 1-3 jalapenos, unseeded and chopped, depending on your taste
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1/3 cup cilantro, chopped
  • lime juice
  • avocado, chopped (optional)
  • salt & pepper
For the pork, season with salt and pepper, then rub the lime zest all over.  Place in slow cooker and cover with orange juice and lime juice.  Cook on LOW for 8-10 hours or HIGH for 5-6.  Pull pork out of slow cooker and shred with two forks.  Serve warm with corn or flour tortillas and desired toppings.

Meanwhile, for pico de gallo, place tomatoes, onion, jalapenos  garlic and cilantro in food processor and pulse together, or chop all by hand and toss together.  Sprinkle with lime juice and season with salt and pepper to taste.  Add avocado last or serve on the side.