December 19, 2012

Soft Ginger Cookies

So I have been on the hunt for a copy cat recipe of Paradise Bakery's Ginger Molasses Cookies. I think I finally found it!

Soft Ginger Molasses Cookies

1 1/4 C Butter
1 C Brown Sugar
1 1/2 C Molasses
1 Egg
2 tsp. Ginger
1 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp All Spice (ground)
1 C Bread Flour
4 C Flour (NOT PACKED, as loose as you can get it without sifting)
1/2 C Boiling Water
3 tsp. Baking Soda
1/2 tsp. Salt
2 C Flour-Yes, you add more.


Add ingredients in that order!
If you're using an electric mixer, Kitchen Aide, Bosche, etc., make sure you treat the dough as though you were mixing by had, stirring until all ingredients are just mixed together.
The consistency of the dough will feel a lot like sugar cookie dough: thick, easy to shape.

When adding the flour, add 5 C straight and mix together.  
Then add the remaining 2 cups
AFTER YOU ADD THE BOILING WATER, and mix well--almost kneading dough.

Separate into 2 in. balls, roll into sugar and press a little flat with spoon or fingers.  The cookies need to be bigger or they will be too dry when you bake them.  You can fit about 8 balls on each cookie sheet.  No need to use non-stick spray, the butter will take care of that!

Bake 375ºF for 7-8 minutes.  Let cool on the cookie sheet.  Re-flatten them with a spoon, if needed. The cookie will look doughy at first, but will settle hours after cooling completely.  Sprinkle with Powdered Sugar.

These cookies are even better the next day, as they will not lose their softness.  ENJOY!!!

November 10, 2012

Pumpkin Better Than You Know What Cake

Pumpkin Better Than You Know What almost is. HAHAHA But seriously, this is really yummy and you can never have too many pumpkin recipes!!

-1 Box Yellow Cake Mix
-1 Small Can Pumpkin
-1 4 oz. Can Sweetened Condensed Milk
-1 8 oz. Tub Cool Whip
-1/2 Bag Heath Bits
-Caramel Sauce

-In a large bowl mix cake and pumpkin. You do not make the cake according to box instructions. Just mix the powder and pumpkin. Mix until smooth.
-Pour into a well-greased 9x13 pan. It will be thick!
-Bake at 350* according to box (28ish minutes?)
-Let cool 5-10 minutes then using the bottom of a wooden spoon, poke holes about 3/4-1 inch apart throughout the entire cake.
-Pour the Sweetened Condensed milk over the cake. Make sure you get some into each hole.
-Refrigerate for at least 45 minutes.
-Spread Cool Whip like frosting, drizzle caramel and sprinkle Heath Bits.
-Refrigerate for 3-4 hours but it tastes better when you let it sit over night. I did not add the whip cream, caramel and Heath Bits until I was ready to serve it.

Alterations. I made my own caramel and whip cream.

Caramel Sauce:
 4 TBSP Butter
1/2 C Brown Sugar
1/4 C Heavy Cream

Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.
Add brown sugar and mix well.
Add cream and bring to a simmer.
Remove from heat. Let cool for 10 minutes.
Transfer to a drizzle-type bottle. (I got mine from Walmart for .97)
Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until cool but not set or it will be too hard to drizzle.

I added my Cool Whip and placed tinfoil over the cake to keep in the fridge. It was too warm and made condensation on the foil so the Cool Whip sort of melted. So with the remaining Heavy Whipping Cream I made Whip Cream.

Whip Cream:
1/2 Cup Heavy Cream
2 TBSP Brown Sugar
Dash of Pumpkin Spice
Dash of Cinnamon
(the sugar and spices are to taste, I didn't exactly measure but that's about what it was)

Mix on High for several minutes until stiff peaks form. Remove and spread over COOL cake.

Then I drizzled the caramel and sprinkled the Heath Bits. I used the chocolate covered ones but you can use the plain instead. Even though I made my own whip cream I think I would still use a Cool Whip and add it when the recipe says to.Then before serving, make the whip cream. I think the melted-ish Cool Whip just enhanced the flavor. You could also add warm caramel to the holes with the condensed milk! That would be yummy! MMMMMMM

October 27, 2012

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting (from Sprinkles Cupcakes)

Probably the best buttercream frosting I've had.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
1 cup butter, softened
3 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt (if using salted butter only add a pinch)

1. In a bowl combine butter, sugar and salt. Beat till blended.
2. Add the milk and vanilla and beat for an additional 3 to 5 minutes or until smooth and creamy.

October 4, 2012

Homemade Pizza Dough

America's Test Kitchen Pizza Dough

-16.5 oz BREAD flour (if you don't have a food scale, it's just a tiny bit under 3 3/4 converts to about 3.7 cups vs 3.75 cups if that helps any)
-2 tsp sugar
-1 1/2 tsp yeast

-Blend these 3 ingredients together in food processor or kitchen aid.

-Slowly pour 1 1/3 cup ICE water into mixer until there are no dry patches of flour mixture.

-Let this mixture sit for 10 minutes to REST.

-Then, add 1 1/2 tsp salt and 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (I do olive oil too, just whatever I feel like). Blend for about 30-60sec. *it will be sticky but have a satin texture.

-Put oil on the counter and knead the dough for 1-5 minutes, until it's all nice and smooth.

-Shape into a ball and put in a lightly greased bowl for a minimum of 24hrs and can sit for up to 3 days (the reason it needs to rest for this long is because it becomes more flavorful over time and less elastic)

-After it has rested in the fridge, divide the dough into 2 balls and place on greased cookie sheet and cover w/ greased saran wrap. Let it sit for 1hr

-Then, flour both sides of the ball and shape into a 12inch sized pizza. *make sure that the center is thinner, so after rolling it out, use your fingers to press down on the center.

-It's best with 1/2cup of sauce ( I use Prego Original & Lauren uses a different kind.) and 1-1 1/4 cup of cheese. This is a thinner crust so I wouldn't pile on the ingredients. It'll just make your slice fall in your lap.  

-Place in preheated oven at 475*-500* (if you have a pizza stone, set the stone 4-5 inches from the top and leave it in the oven as it preheats). Cook for 10-12 minutes and rotate 1/2 way through. I like to cook it on the low rack then half way move it to the top.

-My favorite kind is BBQ Chicken. I use KC Masterpiece sauce, cooked chicken, a little garlic mixed in the sauce and onions, tomatoes or olives on top. SO GOOD!!!

August 29, 2012

Mimi's Cafe Carrot Bread...oh my!

Dark, moist carrot bread is a Mimi's Cafe specialty. Now the tastiest carrot bread ever can be yours to create at home with a couple of grated carrots, molasses, raisins and chopped walnuts.

  • 1 1/2 C. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. saltb
  • 1 C. vegetable oil
  • 1 C. plus 2 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 C. molasses
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 C. shredded carrot
  • 1 C. raisins
  • 3/4 C. chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large mixing bowl. In another bowl, combine oil, sugar, eggs, molasses, and vanilla with an electric mixer. Add shredded carrot and mix. Add raisins and walnuts and mix well by hand. Pour flour mixture into the other ingredients and stir until combined. Pour batter into two ungreased 8-inch loaf pans. Bake for 60 minutes, or until done. Makes 2 loaves.

Crock Pot Au Gratin Potatoes

I got this recipe from here. So good and SO simple!!

Crock Pot Au Gratin Potatoes

6 medium potatoes
8 oz cheese, shredded
3 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk (skim is fine)
chopped garlic (optional, but recommended)
salt (not optional)

1. Wash, peel, and slice your potatoes. You want them about a medium thickness. (I ran them through my food processor.)

2. Grease your slow cooker. I used 2 Tbsp of extra butter, but pan spray would work just fine as long as you really coat the pot.
3. Add one layer of potatoes and salt them. You can use regular table salt, Kosher salt, or even garlic salt, but do not skimp on the salt or your potatoes will be bland, bland, bland.
4. Continue layering and salting until you have used all the potato slices. (You could also add chopped onions to each layer, but my kids don’t like them. Don’t add too many, though, because they can overpower the potato flavor.)
5. When all the potatoes are in the pot, melt the 3 Tbsp of butter in a large saucepan.
6. Add the flour and whisk.
7. Cook over medium heat until mixture starts to bubble up, then cook for 2 minutes whisking constantly.
8. Slowly pour in the milk and whisk until thickened. (Add 2 Tbsp chopped garlic now if you like. It’s good!!)
9. Add the cheese and stir until melted.
10. Pour over the top of the potatoes. Don’t stir the potatoes, but give them a jiggle to get some of the sauce down into the bottom of the pot.
11. Place 2 paper towels across the top of the slow cooker and put on the top.
12. Turn the pot on high and leave it for an hour. You can leave it on high for two more hours or turn it to low for 3-4 hours.

May 19, 2012

Maple Syrup

In making your own maple syrup, you realize just how unhealthy it is, but it's so good! So I try to not remember all the sugar and butter that goes into it as I eat this yummy syrup! :)


2 cups water
1-2 dashes of cinnamon
4 cups white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup Karo light syrup
1/2 cube butter
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1 tablespoon maple flavor


Bring water to a boil. Stir sugars and cinnamon together before adding to the water. Add sugar and all other ingredients to the water. Bring to a boil again. Reduce heat to medium/low and simmer for 1-2 minutes.

*I usually let the leftover syrup cool and then store it in a container (i.e. the ones that you usually put salad dressings in). Not sure how long it's supposed to last in the refrigerator, but we keep ours for months and it tastes fine warmed up again in the microwave!

Pancakes from scratch!

A few years back I ran out of pancake batter mix and as my 18mo old demanded pancakes for breakfast, I frantically searched for pancake recipes on the internet. Over time, I have tried a few recipes, but I settled on this one and made a few tweaks and haven't gone back to the box stuff since!

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tablespoon white sugar

1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cups milk
1 egg
3 tablespoons butter, melted

1. In large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Make a well in the center and pour in the milk, egg. After mixing, slowly add the melted butter and mix until it's all smooth.

2. Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour about 1/4 cups of the batter onto the griddle. Brown both sides and serve hot!

*Pour homemade syrup over the pancakes (recipe found above) to make it even tastier!!!

Lasagna Roll-Ups

Ever want homemade lasagna, but dread the process of making all of the layers! Well, lasagna roll-ups are super easy and taste just as good and are a fraction of the work! This is a family favorite right now and one we make often!

1 lb of ground turkey, chicken or Italian sausage (Jenny-O Italian seasoned ground turkey is best)
1 cup Ricotta cheese
1/2 cup grated (or fresh) Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup milk
Ground Black Pepper to taste
Salt to taste
8 lasagna noodles, cooked and drained
2 cups of your choice of spaghetti sauce
Mozzarella cheese (optional)

1. Combine the cooked chicken, cheeses, milk and pepper in a bowl.

2. Spread 1 cup of the spaghetti sauce in a 13x9 baking dish.

3. Lay the cooked lasagna noodle flat, then spread about 1/2 cup of the cheese/meat mixture on each noodle. Roll it up (like you do jelly-rolls)

4. Place all of the lasagna rolls, seam-side down in the sauce in the baking dish.

5. Top the lasagna rolls with the remaining spaghetti sauce AND sprinkle with additional parmesan cheese or mozzarella cheese if you so choose (it tastes better that way)!

6. Cover with foil

7. Bake at 375*F for 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly!

Lemon Zest Cookies

I do not like lemon flavored candy. Lemon baked goods, however, are some of my favorites! Here is a cookie recipe that sounds amazing.

Zesty Lemon Cookies

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Powdered sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper (or just grease them up)

In the bowl of a standing mixer on medium speed, cream the butter and sugar together until well blended. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the mixer on low speed, add eggs, one at a time, until blended. Add lemon juice and zest, mixing until blended.
Add salt, baking powder and flour and mix until blended.

Drop by rounded scoopfuls onto prepared baking sheets and bake until edges are firm with no color, 12 to 15 minutes.

Let cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer to cooling racks and let cool completely. Dust with powdered sugar. Servings » Makes 2 1/2 dozen (I used my cookie scoop and got 3 dozen cookies)

Paradise Bakery Sugar Cookies

Have you ever had a Paradise Bakery Sugar Cookie? Well, they are to die for!!

1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup powdered sugar
2 cups shortening
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg, beaten
41/3 cups cake flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Sugar for decorating

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix together the sugars and shortening using an electric mixer.

Mix on slow speed 30 seconds, then scrape down the bowl with a spatula. Increase speed to medium and mix for 3 minutes. Slowly add vanilla and beaten egg while mixing.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Gradually add the flour mixture to the mixing bowl, mixing on slow speed until just blended. Do not overmix.

Dough may be rolled out on a lightly floured board and cut with cookie cutters, or scooped with an ice-cream scoop and placed directly on cookie sheet. If scooped, flatten with palm of hand.

Bake at 375 degrees for 9 to 10 minutes. Cookies are done when small cracks appear. Ideally, the edges do not brown.

Sprinkle liberally with sugar after baking. Makes about 3 dozen small cookies.

May 18, 2012

BYU Mint Brownies

These sound amazing and I cannot wait to try them!

BYU Mint Brownies
submitted by Melanie~The Sisters Cafe

This recipe is straight from the BYU Magazine with her notes in brackets:)

1 c. margarine (I use butter)
1/2 c. cocoa
2 Tbsp. honey
4 eggs
2 c. sugar
1 3/4 c. flour
1/2 Tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. chopped walnuts (I leave these out–BYU offers them both ways)
12 oz. chocolate icing (They don’t give the recipe for their chocolate frosting–I just used the mint recipe–omit mint and food coloring add 1/3 cup cocoa or more depending on your tastes)

Mint Icing
5 Tbsp. margarine (I use butter)
dash of salt
3 Tbsp. milk
1 Tbsp. light corn syrup
2 1/3 c. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. mint extract
1-2 drops green food coloring

1. Melt margarine and mix in cocoa. Allow to cool. Add honey, eggs, sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix well. Add nuts. Pour batter into a greased 9-by-13 baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.

2. Prepare mint icing: Soften margarine. Add salt, corn syrup, and powdered sugar. Beat until smooth and fluffy. Add mint extract and food coloring. Mix. Add milk gradually until the consistency is a little thinner than cake frosting.
3. Spread mint icing over brownies. Place brownies in the freezer for a short time to stiffen the icing. Remove from the freezer and
carefully add a layer of chocolate icing.

April 21, 2012

Gooey Coconut Almond Chex Mix

I freaking love this stuff.

1 (14 oz-17 oz) box of Rice OR Corn Chex cereal
1 (7 oz) bag of Sweetened Coconut
1 (5 oz) bag of Almonds (about 1 1/3 cup)

1 1/2 C. Sugar
1 1/2 Sticks (3/4 cup) Margarine or Butter
1 1/4 C. Light Corn Syrup
Dash of Salt

Spray a LARGE bowl with non-stick cooking spray.
Pour in the entire box of Chex cereal, coconut, and almonds.
Gently mix together.

Mix together the sugar, butter, light corn syrup,
and dash of salt in a medium saucepan over high heat.
Bring to a full boil, turn heat down to medium, and cook for
three minutes, stirring constantly.
Pour over the cereal mixture in the big bowl and stir evenly.
Spread out onto wax paper to cool.


Lemon Squares

2 C. Flour
1/2 C. Powdered Sugar
1 C. Butter or Margarine  

4 Beaten Eggs
2 C. Sugar
1/2 C. Lemon Juice
1/4 C. Flour
1/2 tsp. Baking Powder

Sift together flour, powdered sugar and cut in butter.
Press lightly into 9x13 pan
Bake for 15 minutes at 350•

Mix eggs, sugar, lemon juice, flour and baking powder and pour over crust
Bake for 25 minutes at 350•
Let cool 15 minutes
Sift powdered sugar on top and cut into squares

April 11, 2012

Mom's BBQ Sauce

1 1/2 Cups Ketchup
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1 tsp. Mustard
1/4 tsp. Garlic Salt
1/2 tsp. Onion Salt
2 tsp. Chili Powder
4 Tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
1/4-1/2 Cup Water

Combine all ingredients an a saucepan.

Bring to a boil, stirring frequently,
simmer for 10 minutes.

Great over Chicken or Ribs!!

March 15, 2012

Fruit Dip

This is a no brainer but I couldn't remember if it was cream cheese or cool here it is online forever.

1 8 oz. Cream Cheese-softened
1 7 oz. Jar Marshmallow Cream

Blend together until fluffy. Serve chilled with fruit.
Especially good with strawberries!

March 7, 2012

Honey Sesame Chicken

I got this recipe from blog of 6 sisters who make recipes. Can you imagine only 6 piddly sisters??? Anyway, onto the recipe.This is their recipe and my tweeks after it. (I actually doubled the sauce the first time I made it and didn't have enough soy sauce but it definitely did NOT need it. So feel free to use less.)

4-5 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup honey
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup diced onions
1/3 cup ketchup
2 TBS vegetable or canola oil
2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

4 tsp cornstarch dissolved in
6 TBS water
Sesame Seeds

Lightly season chicken with salt and pepper and place in crock pot. In a bowl, mix all ingredients but cornstarch and sesame seeds. Pour over chicken. Cook on low for about 4 hours. (My chicken was frozen, so I cooked it on high for about 4 1/2 hours.) Once chicken is cooked all the way through, remove chicken and add dissolved cornstarch. Stir in with sauce. Replace lid and cook for about 10 minutes. Cut chicken into bite size pieces and put back into crock pot. Toss with sauce just before served. Serve with rice or noodles and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Don't be alarmed at the smell of the sauce at first. It does NOT smell good at all. I was worried about it not being sweet enough and threw in about 1/8 to 1/4 cup brown sugar. I don't know if it really needed it, but it turned out so good, I figured "Why the heck not??" I didn't have garlic cloves or onions, so I threw in some dried minced onion -about 1 tsp and about a 1 tsp of garlic salt. They say not to use Chili powder in place of the red pepper flakes, but I looked it up and you could use Red Cayenne Pepper - just use a pinch of it - like 1/8 tsp. (Mom has some if you want to borrow the pinch.) I didn't notice the sauce thicken that much with the cornstarch (if at all) so if you don't have it, don't sweat it.

It was so easy to make and very delicious!!

Here is there blog with other recipes too.

March 5, 2012

Mom's Best Zucchini Bread EVER!

3 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
2 cups peeled, grated zucchini
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp salt
1 tsp soda
3 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp baking powder
3 cups flour
1/2 cups chopped nuts (optional)

Beats eggs together. Add sugar, oil zucchini and vanilla. Beat well. Add all dry ingredients and stir. Add nuts. Grease and sugar loaf pans. Bake 1 hour at 325 degrees. Or for about 40 minutes for the mini loaves.

February 29, 2012

Crock Pot Lasagna

1 lb hamburger, cooked and drained
1 large can/bottle spaghetti

Mix together

1 large cottage cheese (or Ricotta)
2 eggs

Mix together in another bowl

2 cups Mozzarella
(Also throw in some of the Cheddar/Monterey Jack blend)
About 9 raw lasagna noodles

Layer crock pot with meat sauce
Next, layer with noodles - just make them fit - break into smaller pieces if necessary
Layer with cottage cheese mixture
Layer with cheese

Repeat 2 times.

Cook on high 2 1/2 to 3 hours.

Joanie's Baked Beans

2-16 oz cans Pork & Beans
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp dry mustard
1/2 cup ketchup
6 slices bacon, cut into pieces
1/2 cup (approximately) chopped onion
Shot or 2 Worchestshire Sauce
Shot or 2 Balsamic Vinegar

Saute bacon and onions first. Add all other ingredients and mix together. Bake 2 1/2 hours at 325. Stir several times during baking.

January 30, 2012

Disneyland's Loaded Baked Potato Soup

Loaded Baked Potato Soup from Carnation Café at Disneyland Park

Nothing sounds better on a cold night than a bowl full of soup. And nothing sounds better than this soup recipe!!

Serves 6

1 pound bacon, roughly chopped
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
3/4 cup diced celery
4 large Russet potatoes, peeled and diced
4 medium red potatoes, diced
1/4 cup flour
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
Coarse salt, freshly ground pepper, to taste
4 cups heavy whipping cream
Optional garnishes: chopped chives, bacon bits, sour cream, shredded cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese

In a 6- to 8-quart stockpot over medium heat, fry bacon until crisp.
Remove bacon and drain on paper towels, reserving half for garnish. In bacon fat, cook onions, carrots, and celery until the onions are translucent. Add potatoes and cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Whisk in flour and stir constantly over low heat until the flour is cooked and the mixture has thickened slightly, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add chicken stock and half of the bacon. Season with salt and pepper.
Over medium-high heat, bring the soup to a simmer and cook for 25 minutes or until the potatoes are soft. Mash some of the potatoes for thicker, creamier texture. Add whipping cream and simmer for 5 minutes.
Adjust thickness by adding water or stock. Soup should have a creamy consistency.
Season to taste, and garnish with toppings.

Cooks’ notes: Soak diced potatoes in cold water until ready to use to keep them from turning brown. To make bacon easier to chop, lightly freeze.

January 26, 2012

Haystacks or No Bake Cookies

I LOVED these growing up. I had a hankerin' today for something with oats and this was perfect.

1 Cube Butter
1/2 Cup Milk
2 Cups Sugar
3 TBSP Cocoa
1 Tsp Vanilla
1/2 Tsp Salt

3 Cups Quick Oats
1 Cup Coconut or
2 TBPS Peanut Butter (depending on the flavor you want)

Mix first section of ingredients together in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and add oats and coconut. Mix well and spoon onto waxed paper and allow to set, 30 minutes.

If you want the peanut butter flavor add that before the oats and allow to melt.

January 23, 2012

Buttermilk Syrup

I had this at our Ward Christmas Party last year and couldn't get enough. Its the kind of syrup you could just drink it's that good!

1 Cube Butter
1 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Buttermilk

Combine all in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat.
Add 1/2 tsp Soda and
1 tsp Vanilla

Stir and serve warm over Pancakes, Waffles or French Toast