Thursday, September 29, 2011

Iced Pumpkin Cookies

I really love Fall.  Fall makes me wish I lived in a picturesque suburb or something, where I have leaves all over my backyard.  Fall makes me count down to every holiday till New Year's.  Fall makes me want to be with family or lets me think of when I'm old enough to have my own. Fall makes want a Hallmark card style life.  Fall makes me bake with cinnamon and pumpkin...

Iced Pumpkin Cookies adapted from

makes about 3 dozen Perfect Puffy Pumpkin Pillows


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I used half AP and half whole wheat AP, no one notices that way)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin 
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Glaze:
  • I used about three cups of confectioner's sugar and 3 tablespoons of milk 

Do this: 
Preheat the over to 350 degrees
Combine all the dry stuff, so ingredients 1-6
Then cream together the butter and sugar, add pumpkin&egg&vanilla and beat until creamy
Slowly add the dry stuff 
Drop of cookie sheet in tablespoon fulls, the batter/dough is quite sticky and the amount of flour in this recipe lets these goodies be really cake-y and still very moist 
Bake for 15 minutes. 
Let cool then drizzle glaze on top.
then find lots of friends to come over and eat them because they are very addictive! (though not too bad for you, at 2 WW points each). 

These cookies were made in a last minute plan not to leave my house and to make my friends come to me instead - can't leave when the oven is on! 

I was never expecting them to be so darn delicious. 

My mother is the only one who takes it seriously when I ask for criticism on my cooking, I believe these are her new favorite cookies. 
My sister is ten years old, the next morning I just woke up and was coming down the stairs and I see her with two of these cookies on her place, microwaving them till they were warm for her morning snack.  I thought it was the funniest thing, girl has good taste. 

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Shepard's Pie

I wanted to just cook last weekend, I wanted to make something I've never made before, I wanted to make something yummy, I wanted to make something comforting.

I need to work on my chit chatty commentary before I show you the food - maybe next time.

Shepard's Pie adapted from Alton Brown



  • 1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes
  • 1 egg yolk
  • milk, butter, salt, pepper 

Boil the 1/2 diced potatoes until cooked, drain and return to pot adding the milk, butter, salt, and pepper to desired tasted and consistency; then add the egg yolk

Well, while the potatoes boil away, make the meat filling


  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 3 carrots, peeled and diced small
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons freshly chopped rosemary leaves
  • 1 teaspoon freshly chopped thyme leaves
  • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
  • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen peas
  • Salt & Peppa
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
Heat the oil in a large skillet, add the onion and carrots till slightly browned (3 minutes) then add garlic and cook for another minute.
Add the ground beef, salt and pepper, break up and cook until actually cooked through 
Add the tomato paste, chiken brother, Worcestershire, rosemary, thyme, and stir to combine.  Bring to a boil then reduce the heat, cover and simmer about 10 minutes or until the sauce is slightly thickened.
Add corn and peas
Put the mixture into oven safe baking dish that is large enough for this goodness.
Top with the mashed potatoes - like this (I decided to add more potatoes than what Alton says, which means my meat to potato ratio was way off - good thing mashed potatoes have always been one of my most favorite foods in the world).

Put baking dish on a cookie sheet and into the oven for about 25 minutes or until the potatoes are brown
Let cool for a minute then eat


Pumpkin Chip Bread with a Strudel Topping and Spiced Glaze

I made this bread a week ago, I needed to get a start on Fall baking.  I had some competition in the kitchen with this Yankee Candle Spice Cake candle, you probably didn't even notice the delicious smell from the oven over the delicious smell on the window sill.  Well, this Pumpkin bread was yummy (though I think I baked it a bit too long and it could have been sweeter according to my Mother).

Pumpkin Chip Bread with a Strudel Topping and Spiced Glaze
Makes 1 8x4 loaf 

Pumpkin Bread adapted from Brown Eyed Baker

1 1/2 + 1/6 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 + 1/3 cups granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 cup (15 ounces) canned pumpkin
1/3 cup water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Strudel Topping adapted from

  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • Pretty much combine all the ingredients in a small bowl

Spiced Glaze adapted from Brown Eyed Baker

1 heaping cup of powdered sugar
3 tablespoons of milk
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice

Pretty much whisk all these together in another bowl

Bake the bread!

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease the loaf pan
Combine the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg)
Meanwhile beat together the wet
First beat together the sugar and oil, then add eggs, water, and vanilla
Slowly add the dry mixture to the wet until completely combined
then fold in the chocolate chips
Pour into loaf pan and top with the strudel mixture 
Bake for about an hour

Let cool and top with Spiced Glaze

p.s. have I ever mentioned that I HATE nutmeg, I got over it and used it here though.
p.p.s. I have the worst lighting ever in my kitchen, the food never looks as good in the picture. 

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Clearly, I'm all caught up.

I didn't want to post 3 posts in a day but, it just had to be done. 

Coconut Chocolate Chunk Cookies

These cookies are an adaptation from the m&m Cookies but are more mature,
I added about a cup of toasted sweetened coconut and some chocolate chunks instead of the m&m's (which I much prefer), but still have the best cookie dough base.

very delicious

M&M Cookies

I made some cookies, I made some "adult" cookies and I made some "kid" cookies.  These are filled with m&m's in the best cookie dough I've ever had. 

adapted from How Sweet it is and Brown Eyed Baker and therefore CooksIllustrated

2 cups + 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) of salted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup m&m’s (or whatever else)
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Mix together the dry ingredients in one bowl 
Mix together the sugars and butter in another then add vanilla and egg + egg yolk
Mix dry in (I don't know why this isn't letting me type correctly)
I really love this dough because the mix-ins are like mixed in and falling out and its just so I don't know, sweet.
Bake for like 10 minutes 

7 Layer Dip

I finally got some pictures of recipes from earlier this month.  This dip was made for Labor day and was a huge hit, its pretty healthy too - except when you eat it all like I did or when you eat a half a bag of chips with it, then it stops being healthy. 

1. beans - I sauteed onion and mashed them with a can of red beans
2. corn - three fresh ears of boiled corn
3. red peppers - 1 diced pepper
4. sour cream
5. salsa - I used fresh Roma tomatoes, onion, green onions, lime juice - this is not how I usually make salsa but make sure you drain out all of the juices
6. guacamole - I used one store bought package 

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


So, I made lots of cookies and a terrific 7-layer dip for Labor day but I forgot my camera on my trip to home from college (living in two places at once is inconvenient) - so I had to take pictures of the nom nom's on my Mommy's camera.

So, now, I won't be able to post them till I get that camera and upload them.  I'm such a terrible blogger.

For now, have some pictures of an incompletely frosted Red Velvet Cake.