Thursday, December 23, 2010

Favorite Cookies

chomp chomp chomp

Since it's the holidays I wanted to compile some my favorite cookie recipes that I've blogged about into one post. Here are some, in no particular order:

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies - This is a favorite. A great combo of chocolate and mint!

Peanut Butter Cup Cookies - Ooooh these are delicious. I love peanut butter and chocolate.

Maple Sugar Cookies - A yummy Martha Stewart recipe.

My Mom's Sugar Cookies - The BEST sugar cookies in the world!

Almond Balls - A new favorite!

So when I started writing this post I really felt as though I've blogged about a lot of different cookies. Well apparently not because the 5 cookie recipes above are the only ones I've ever blogged about! So my New Year's resolution is to: Bake more cookies and blog about all of them.

No go make some cookies. :)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Almond Balls

Rob has dubbed these cookies "Angel Balls". I'm not really sure why but I think it's funny and I laugh to myself every time I think about it. I tend to laugh to myself rather frequently but that's beside the point. I recently made something similar at a friend's house but her recipe was secret (shhhhhh) so I got this recipe from my mom. I think they're great for the holidays.

Printable Recipe


1 cup butter (softened)
1/3 cup white sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup ground almonds - blanched (finely chopped)
2/3 cup oats (chopped)
2 cups flour
1 cup powdered sugar for coating


In a large bowl cream butter, sugar, salt and vanilla with mixer until well combined. Finely chop almonds in a food processor until they reach a consistency similar to flour. Beat into the butter mixture. Roughly chop oatmeal in a food processor and add to the mixture and stir. Add the flour, one cup at a time and stir by hand until all ingredients are well combined.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Take about a teaspoon of dough and roll into a tight ball. The ball should be just a little smaller than a quarter. Space the cookies one inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Since there is no leavening in these cookies they do not rise, therefore they can be placed close together. Bake for about 10 minutes or until the bottom of the cookies are light brown.

Remove cookie sheet from the oven and let cool for at least 5 minutes before taking the cookies off and moving them to a cooling rack. If you try to remove them from the cookie sheet right away they will fall apart....I know this because I tried.

Once cooled, toss the cookies in powdered sugar and eat. Yum!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Let it Snow!

It’s hard to believe Christmas is in five days. I am now finally feeling festive and inspired to bake (and eat!) lots of Holiday cookies. I am not a fan of snow or cold and there is snow in the forecast almost every day this week…and I’m actually looking forward to it. This is surprising even to me. I love being in my kitchen and watching the snow fall and smelling deliciously delicious cookies baking in the oven. Mmmm yum! I guarantee though once Christmas is over I will be cursing it every chance I get. But for now I shall not be a scrooge and I will enjoy it!

Let it snow!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Candle Addiction

So as some of you may know from previous posts here and here that I love candles. Specifically Illuminations candles but sadly, they are no longer in business. I took a picture last time I reorganized my candle cupboard (see below). I was making room for a new candle love. Yes, I said it...I have a new love. It's hard to let go of Illuminations but I must since I have no choice. Queue the overly dramatic music. Ha! Really, I have moved on. So my new favorite is Slatkin & Co candles. So many great smells. They also burn really evenly (probably because they have three wicks) but burn up rather quickly. I'm just happy to have found candles almost comparable to Illuminations. I think I need another cupboard....

 So many candles!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Apple Cranberry-Orange Pie

Apples, apples, many apples. I decided to make more pie. I adapted this recipe from the great Martha Stewart and changed it a bit. She calls it Apple Cranberry Pie but I decided it was necessary to throw in the word 'orange' because the orange flavor is quite prominent. In fact, next time I make this recipe I will only use half the zest and juice that this recipe calls for. I suggest doing the same unless you really don’t mind the strong orange flavor.

Just like with the apple turnovers, I used a pre-made pie crust. Martha would probably “poo-poo” me for not making homemade but, c’mon…it’s so easy to buy pre-made!

Apple Cranberry-Orange Pie
Printable Recipe


5 medium-sized apples, peeled cored and sliced
The zest of 1 orange
The juice of 1 orange
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup fresh cranberries roughly chopped
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg


1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 rounded tablespoons of oats
3 tablespoons of melted butter
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon


1 pre-made pie crust
Aluminum foil


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Mix together all the ingredients for the filling in a large bowl. Be sure to stir well and mix evenly. Pour filling into uncooked pre-made pie crust.

Mix together all the ingredients for the topping until the consistency becomes crumb-like. Sprinkle evenly over the pie.

Before going into the oven

Bake for 1/2 hour then remove from oven. Loosely cover with aluminum foil and bake for another 1/2 hour.

Depending how thick you cut your apples will affect how long it will take to bake your pie. Obviously, the thicker the apples, the longer it will take. To test, I take a sharp knife and stick it into the pie. If the apples are tough, I bake it until they become soft and I can easily stick a knife in the pie.

Once the pie is thoroughly baked, remove from the oven and place on a wire cooling rack and allow to cool.

Once cooled, eat and enjoy!

Fresh cranberries, chopped

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Caramel Apple Pie...ooh and a New Cutting Board!

About two weeks ago Rob and I went to Michigan. It was a perfect fall weekend. We went to wine tastings, toured Fenn Valley Winery and vineyards, ate lots of yummy food and went leaf peeping. I'll post pictures soon. On the way back to Chicago we stopped at Big Dan's U-Pick Farm to pick more apples. Yes, more apples! I've been doing so much baking with apples that I think I need an extended vacation from them. One of my favorite recipes is my caramel apple pie. I'm really selfish when it comes to this recipe. There are a lot of recipes I make up and I post them on this blog. But there are some I keep to myself, like this one. Call me selfish but I just don't want to release my baby to the world. Here she is before being put into the oven:

I love you, little pie

Of course, I forgot to take a picture after I baked it. Here's a pic from an older post. Yum...

I'm also really excited about my new cutting board. I get ridiculously excited about new kitchen items/utensils. I've been eyeing some here and there but couldn't bring myself to spend a lot of money. I wanted a really big cutting board. The biggest one I had (pictured above with my delicious apple pie) still wasn't big enough and it was starting to crack. So I went to Ikea (I love Ikea) and got this one:

Hello new cutting board!

Only $12.99! What a deal! whooohooo....

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins

This autumn has been amazing. I have truly been enjoying all the things it has to offer. Taking walks, enjoying the changing foliage, baking, traveling to Michigan with Rob, touring wineries, sampling wine (yum!), apple picking, apple cider, more apple picking (I have apples coming out of my ears), pumpkin carving….I could go on and on! And it’s not even over.

Since I have so many apples I’ve been making a variety of apple-related baked goods. I adapted this recipe from

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins
Printable Recipe


1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 cup unsalted butter - room temperature
1/2 white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar - packed (1/4 cup is for the topping)
1 egg lightly beaten
2/3 cup skim milk
1/3 cup pumpkin spice creamer *
2 large apples - peeled, cored and chopped


Fill 12 muffin tins with muffin cups and set aside. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

Mix together the whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Set aside.

With a mixer in a large bowl, cream the butter, white sugar and 1/4 cup brown sugar until it’s fluffy. Add the egg, milk and creamer. Mix well. At this point my butter/milk mixture looked odd. There was separation with the milk and butter but once I finished the next step it combined well and everything was fine.

Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and beat until combined. Fold in the apple pieces and evenly distribute.

Pour batter evenly into 12 muffin tins and top evenly with remaining brown sugar. Bake for 15 minutes. Insert a toothpick into the center of a muffin and if the toothpick comes out clean remove from the oven and cool. If not, bake an additional 5 minutes then check again. Repeat if necessary.

Eat and enjoy! :)

* The original recipe called for 1 cup of buttermilk which I didn’t have. So I used the 2/3 skim milk and 1/3 pumpkin spice creamer. It tasted yummy but if you have a cup of buttermilk you can use that.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Pumpkin Carving and Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

I'm really enjoying fall this year. This is the first time in a long time that I carved a pumpkin early. Normally I do it right before Halloween. I picked a pumpkin a few weeks back when I went apple picking. It was only $3 for a big pumpkin. If you go to the grocery store you pay over two times as much for a half rotten one. So $3 is a great deal. I'll be traveling up to Michigan soon so I hope to grab one or two more pumpkins to carve right before Halloween.

So I made a rough sketch of what I wanted my pumpkin to look like:


He's a little creepy huh? Well I unfortunately didn't have an erasable marker so I couldn't sketch onto the pumpkin itself so I decided to free-hand cut the entire thing (after a glass of wine). So...It didn't exactly turn out the way I wanted it to because I made a few mistakes but it's kinda close:

I put it in the window to scare people away:


It must have worked because no one rang my doorbell all night!'s rare that anyone ever rings my doorbell but still...

This little pumpkin has so many seeds. So of course I had to roast them. I posted this recipe last year. This year I used real butter. They turned out really tasty so I recommend using butter.

Look, I made a scary face in the uncooked seeds:


So, as always the seeds turned out delicious. Next time you roast pumpkin seeds use this recipe!


Tuesday, October 12, 2010


It always seems like I run out of multiple things at the exact same time. Like toothpaste, shaving cream and contact lens solution. All gone, at the same time! It's the way of the universe I suppose. Well that happened with my spices last week. I needed peppercorns, garlic powder, rosemary, crushed red pepper, celery salt and Italian seasoning. So I went to my favorite spice buying place, The Spice House. LOVE this place. I could spend hours and hours just smelling and tasting their spices. The thing I like about The Spice House is that I can buy small amounts of spices at a time. Since spices typically don't have a long shelf life it's best to buy them in small quantities and replenish when needed. I got all those spices for $18.50. A great deal for guaranteed fresh spices!  And I love that they hand write your order. You don't see that very often.

No, thank you Eric

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Apple Turnovers

Since I have so many apples I'm (of course) doing lots of baking with apples. This recipe is easy, mostly because I used pre-made pie crust. All you crust snobs listen up. When you're in a pinch these do the trick! Pre-made obviously isn't as good as homemade but Pillsbury makes a really tasty pre-made crust. The same day I made these I made my caramel apple pie. So I doubled this recipe and made about 16 turnovers and froze them (uncooked) for future eating. Follow this recipe for 8 turnovers. Double if you want 16.

Apple Turnovers
Printable Recipe


4 apples, peeled cored and sliced (I used Golden Delicious)
3 tablespoons butter
1 cup of packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon water
2 flat pre-made circular pie crusts

Cinnamon sugar for sprinkling


1. Melt butter in a large skillet. I used a large cast iron skillet but you can use a non-stick if you don't have it. Place the sliced apples in the skillet and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently.

2. Add brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla. Cook for another couple minutes, stirring frequently.

3. In a small bowl combine the cornstarch and water. Stir well then add to the apple mixture.

4. Cook the apples for another 5 minutes until the sauce thickens up. If you use apples that are juicy you may have to cook for a few extra minutes.

5. Remove skillet from heat and allow to cool about 20 minutes.

6. Unroll the pie crust then cut the crust in half, then in half again like the diagram below:

7. Brush a little water around the outside edges of the cut pieces. The water will help seal the dough together when you fold it over. 

8. Add about 2 tablespoons (you might need a little more) of the apple mixture to one side of the piece of dough. See diagram below (pretend the black blob is 2 tablespoons of apples...ha ha): 

9. Fold in half, where the dotted line is. Press down the edges of the unsealed sides with a fork. Poke a couple little holes in the top of the turnover.

At this point you can wrap them individually in plastic wrap and freeze for future use or you can bake them right away and eat them.

10. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper and place turnovers about 1 inch apart.

11. Bake for 20 minutes then remove from the oven. Brush with melted butter then sprinkle cinnamon sugar over the top. Put back in the oven and bake another 5-10 minutes.

12. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 20 minutes before eating.

This recipe is great! Go make some turnovers!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Apple Picking

Rob and I went apple picking this past Saturday. It was a perfect fall day. Cloudy, cold and windy with the subtle smell of Autumn in the air. We drove up to the Illinois/Wisconsin border to a place called Oriole Springs Orchard. It's a 'no frills' kind of place. There aren't hay rides, corn mazes, thousands of kids running around screaming or any fun-filled family activities. It's just an orchard, with apples. I've already decided that this is going to be a yearly tradition. They had three different types of apples; Golden Delicious, Red Delicious and Jonathan. We chose to only pick the Golden and Jonathan. The Red was our least favorite of the three. We took our time picking and managed to get half a bushel which cost us $18. Not a bad price in my opinion. After our apple picking we drove down the road to Harvest Time Orchard to try their famous apple cider shakes. It was one of the best shakes I have ever had. It's worth it to drive the hour and a half up there just for these shakes. They also make apple cider and you can watch the process. So we sipped our shakes and watched them make apple cider. A perfect day! Now I have apples coming out of my ears so there is a lot of baking in my future. I've already made apple turnovers and my caramel apple pie and I still have more apples than I know what to do with. :)

Jonathan Apples

The Golden Delicious Orchard

Golden Delicious

Golden Delicious

I love a cloudy fall sky


Fallen fruit

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Martha Stewart’s Pumpkin Swirl Brownies

Martha never lets me down. I signed up for her ‘Cookie of the Day’ emails ages ago. I look forward each day to what Martha has in store. I haven’t made a lot of her recipes but when I do, they always come out well. One of my favorite recipes of hers is the Lime Squares with Graham Cracker Crust which I make frequently. There’s also the Maple Sugar Cookies that are perfect for fall. I can never get enough maple and pumpkin flavored baked goods in the fall. A couple weeks ago her cookie of the day was a pumpkin swirl brownie. I knew right away I had to make it! Since it’s Martha’s recipe I’ll just post a link to it here. I omitted the cayenne pepper since I didn’t have any. I also put chopped almonds on the top instead of the hazelnuts. I have a severe allergy to walnuts, pecans and hazelnuts so obviously I couldn’t put those on top. I thought the almonds added a great crunch to the brownies and the chocolate and pumpkin tastes great together. I recommend this to anyone who likes chocolate and pumpkin.

Before going into the oven


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Cast Iron Skillet Macaroni and Cheese

I love cooking in cast iron skillets. They can last a lifetime and I find that food just tastes better cooked in a cast iron skillet. I wanted to make a baked macaroni and cheese that was lower in fat. I pretty much just made up this recipe and it turned out surprisingly well.


13.25 ounce box of whole wheat pasta spirals, shells or elbow noodles
2/3 cup fat free sour cream
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup Italian bread crumbs
12 ounce can of evaporated skim milk
1/2 cup fresh skim milk
4 ounces shredded low fat Cheddar cheese plus 1/2 cup for topping
4 ounces shredded low fat Monterrey Jack cheese
1 tablespoon of mustard
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 teaspoon salt


1. Cook pasta per the directions on the box but cook one minute less. Drain, then mix with sour cream in a large bowl then set aside.

2. In a non stick pan on medium heat combine Parmesan cheese and bread crumbs. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat then set aside.

3. In a medium sized pan combine evaporated and skim milk and heat on medium until the milk begins to bubble. Add 4 ounces of Cheddar, 4 ounces of Monterrey, mustard, black pepper and salt. Stir constantly until the cheese has melted. Remove from heat and immediately pour into the pasta and sour cream mixture. Stir to combine then pour into a 10 inch seasoned cast iron skillet.

4. Evenly sprinkle 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese and Parmesan cheese and bread crumb mixture on top. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F then bake uncovered for 15 minutes. You want to top to be a little crispy and bubbly.

5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 15 minutes before serving. Remember, cast iron skillets stay hot for quite a long time so be careful when handling the skillet.

Crunchy, cheesy goodness...mmm

I made bruschetta with this and it was a great combo. Enjoy!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


I made some yummy low(er) fat baked macaroni and cheese this past a cast iron skillet. It was deelish! I'll post the recipe tomorrow.

Say "cheese!"

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Post it Note 'How-to'

Some people have asked me about the drawings on my blog and whether or not I do them myself. Yes, I do. Aside from baking I do love to draw. I'm drawn towards whimsical things and I like to give life to inanimate objects. I used to scare my friend Miranda with Blizzards from Dairy Queen. I would scoop out faces in the ice cream and then talk in a funny voice as the Blizzard. It would really scare her. One time I took it a little too far and made a really scary face with a big gaping mouth. I was talking in an evil growling tone. She freaked. She literally got out of the car and went running towards the woods. I laughed and ate my scary Blizzard.

I've been enjoying making fruits and veggies come to life. How can you not crack a smile when you see a pumpkin or an eggplant smiling?

I wanted to do a post about my process of making them. I call them Post it Notes because I sometimes draw them on actual Post it Notes. Hopefully the Post it Note people will not sue me. I'll change the name if I have to. Or offer them baked goods.

So I start out by physically drawing something. I know I could just draw it in Photoshop but I like to draw on paper.

This one had a little more detail than normal so I drew it on a large piece of paper and not a Post it Note since I needed more room. Once drawn, I scan the image and it looks like this:

It's impossible to scan it and not get little specs and imperfections so I open it up in Photoshop and clean it up, fill in gaps and fix any imperfections. Then it looks like this:

So much better! Then I start filling in colors. I always do the background in yellow because of the whole Post it Note theme. Maybe one day I will be daring and switch things up. But not today:

Oh look...he's almost finished. This part is the most fun because I can play with lots of different colors. Once I'm happy with the colors I touch up any final imperfections and then I have this:

A happy apple! Now c'mon and smile. :)

Do drop in at the Dew Drop Inn

Fourteen years ago today I saw my first Tori Amos concert in Akron Ohio, The Dew Drop Inn Tour. I cannot believe it has been fourteen years. It seems like just yesterday. I was totally mesmerized by her and I was a fan before that show but that sealed the deal. I’ve been devoted ever since. Here’s the set list for that show:

Beauty Queen/Horses
Ohio/One Tin Soldier
Blood Roses
Cornflake Girl
Space Dog
Little Earthquakes
Happy Phantom
Lucky Ducky
Precious Things
Caught a Lite Sneeze
Me and a Gun

Encore 1

This Old Man/Putting the Damage On

Encore 2

Tear in Your Hand

So many good songs. Space Dog has always been one of my favorites, especially back then. I heard it and cried. I was so happy she did it. Butterfly and Alamo were beautiful. Talula was amazing. Everything was amazing. I’ve replayed that show over and over again in my head. I don’t ever want to forget.

"She's brand new now to you"

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Illuminations Part II

Everyone that knows me knows that I love candles. I've blogged about Illuminations before. I'm still upset that they closed all their stores. A while back I was feeling sentimental and missing the simple fact that I could drive out to the suburbs and go to Illuminations. I decided to create a group on Facebook dedicated to Illuminations. I think I was really bored that day. As of this post it has 18 members. Whoohoo. The thing is, I cannot find any other brand of candles that smell as good as theirs did or another brand with as many unique scents. I go to Yankee Candle and granted, they have a few that smell good but literally just a few. And don't get me started on they way the Yankee jars look. No offense to any Yankee Candle lovers out there. It's just not my style. I know there are a lot of candle sites but I need to smell before I buy. I loved just being in an Illuminations store. It was dimly lit with candles and tea lights illuminating the store. Maybe I have a strong sentimental connection because I worked there. I associate scents with memories as many people do I'm sure. This is the time of year that I first moved to Chicago and started working at Illuminations. I see things and I can almost smell what I associate with that memory and vice versa.

So my mom just called me as I am sitting here typing. She's on her way to the Yankee Candle outlet store. Yankee bought out Illuminations a couple years before they closed. Some of the outlet stores still have a few Illuminations candles here and there. The last time I was visiting my parents we went to the outlet store and I stocked up on Mulled Wine candles. I think I have 7 of them stored away...shhhh. But I didn't get all they had. So mom and dad are on their way and she wanted to know how many I wanted. All of them pleeeeeeease.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


I have to say I’m not a fan of eggplant. Yack! Honestly though, I haven’t had it many times so I don’t have much to compare. The last time I had it was at one of me and Rob’s favorite (and convenient) Thai places called Noodle Zone. Noodle Zone is BYOB. I love BYOB places. I wish every restaurant in Chicago was BYOB. It saves mucho dinero and you don’t ever have to worry about a restaurant not having your favorite drink. Anyway, they have a dish called basil eggplant. I finally tried it recently and was not a fan. No, no, no. I’m going to stick to the basil chicken or the green curry with chicken...Mmmmmm. If anyone out there in the blog reading world has any recipes that involve eggplant that do not taste disgusting (ha ha) please share. I’m willing to try new things and give it more of a chance. Meanwhile, isn't this the happiest eggplant you've ever seen?

The happiest eggplant ever

Monday, September 13, 2010

Oatmeal Cranberry Almond Cookies

Not only have I been on a scone kick lately but I've also been doing a lot of baking with cranberries. I found the recipe for these cookies here. I followed the recipe exactly but I think next time I make them I will do some experimenting with whole wheat flour and maybe some other ingredients. If you're looking for a low fat cookie then these are not for you. There is a lot of butter but let me tell you, they are so good!


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup soft unsalted butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups oatmeal
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup roughly chopped almonds


1. In a bowl mix together flour, baking soda and salt.

2. In a large bowl with a mixer, mix the butter and sugars. Beat together until the mixture has doubled. Add eggs and vanilla and beat into the butter mixture.

3. Slowly beat the flour mixture in a little at a time until everything is combined. Add oatmeal, cranberries and chopped almonds then stir with a spoon.

4. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and drop rounded tablespoons of dough evenly on the baking sheet about 2 inches apart.

5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place one baking sheet on the top rack of the oven and one in the middle. Let the cookies bake for 8 minutes then switch the two baking sheets. Once switched, bake for an additional 8-9 minutes or until the cookies are lightly browned.

6. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a cooling rack.

Fun with chopped almonds :)

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Glazed Buttermilk Pumpkin Scones

I’ve really been on a scone kick lately. I recently made cranberry lemon scones that were really good and since fall is right around the corner I decided to make pumpkin scones. They came out pretty good but I think the recipe could be tweaked a bit to make them better. Here’s the recipe that I used. I’ll probably update it once I tweak it.

Printable Recipe


2 cups all purpose flour
8 tablespoons white sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
6 tablespoons cold butter (cut up in small chunks)
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
3 tablespoons buttermilk
1 large egg


1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with a layer of parchment paper. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger in a bowl and stir.

2. Throw in the chopped butter and mix together with a pastry blender until the consistency is ‘crumb-like’.

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, buttermilk and egg.

4. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients but do not over-stir.

5. Pour buttermilk mixture into flour mixture and stir only until it clumps together. Pour dough onto a lightly floured surface. Cover your hands with flour and knead the dough lightly-only once or twice. Re-flour surface if needed then flatten dough into a circle until it's about 1/2 inch thick. Cut dough into 8 equal pieces.

6. Brush the top of the scones with buttermilk then place on baking sheet with parchment paper.

7. Bake for 14-16 minutes until they are lightly browned. Remove from oven and place on cooling rack to cool.

Now my favorite part…the icing!


1 cup of powdered sugar (+ 1/2 additional cup if needed)
2 & 1/2 tablespoons buttermilk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


1. Combine all ingredients until you reach a smooth consistency. If the glaze is too watery add more powdered sugar little by little. I was really low on powdered sugar when I made these so my glaze was really thin, almost watery. Not a good thing so next time I make them I'll make sure I have enough powdered sugar on hand.

2. Once the scones have cooled completely, coat the tops of the scones with the glaze. Allow glaze to harden then eat up!

My glaze-deprived scone...still yummy though!

Goes perfect with a chai tea latte!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


In just a little over two weeks it will officially be Autumn. It's truly one of my most favorite times of the year. It can be very bittersweet for me. I love the warm weather of the summer and the transition into fall is really spectacular. Crisp air, the smell of changing leaves, maple and pumpkin flavored baked goods. That is sweet to me! But the bitter part is the fact that winter is just around the corner. Yuck! Maybe on Thanksgiving I can eat myself into hibernation then wake up around April? If bears can do it why can't I? I could use a few extra months of sleep....

This pumpkin loves Autumn

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Zucchini Lasagna

This is a great way to use up zucchini if you have a lot of it. As I mentioned in this post, I had a lot of zucchini that I needed to do something with. Unfortunately at the moment (or maybe at all) I can't find the recipe I used for this so I can't post measurements. Grrr! Basically though, if you are familiar with making lasagna you can make it the way you normally do except you use zucchini slices instead of noodles. All you have to do is thinly slice the zucchini then boil the slices for about 3 minutes before assembling the lasagna. I absolutely loved this! And it was easier than using those annoyingly long lasagna noodles that always seem to fall apart when you boil them. I will be doing this again in the future!