Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

posted in: Desserts, Food | 0 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Oatmeal raisin cookies, people love them or people hate them. The raisins can be a point of contention for cookie consumers. It has taken us many years to like these cookies but we think it all comes down to the recipe. Oatmeal raisin cookies have the tendency to be dry and crumbly after the first day and that is just sad.

This recipe though, generates moist cookies for a couple of days after baking, that is if you don’t eat them all on the first day 🤣. The reason they keep their moisture is the inclusion of molasses. Molasses adds moisture, but it also adds another layer of sweetness and flavor. You can use regular molasses, but recently we have switched to using robust molasses in our baked goods and have been very pleased with the flavor. Try it out for yourself and see if you like the robust flavor also!

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup (200 g) packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 T vanilla extract
  • 1 T molasses
  • 1 1/2 cups (190 g) all purpose flour
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 2 t ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 cup (140 g) raisins
  • 3 cups (240 g) old fashioned oats

Instructions

  1. Using a mixer, cream together butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar until completely incorporated.
  2. Add in eggs and vanilla. Mix. Add molasses. Mix. Scrape down sides as necessary to ensure all ingredients are combined. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Add to the wet ingredients and mix until combined, scraping down sides to combine.
  4. Stir in raisins and oatmeal by hand.
  5. Refrigerate 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  6. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment.
  7. Scoop about 1 1/2 tablespoons of dough and place 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets.
  8. Bake 10-12 minutes, until edges are lightly browned and center is just cooked.
  9. Cool and enjoy!
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An Untraditional Dead Bread

An Untraditional Dead Bread

posted in: Breakfast, Desserts, Food, Snacks | 0 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Growing up in the southwest we learned Spanish in school and at the start of every November we would celebrate Día de los Muertos with our class. Día de los Muertos is a three day celebration in Mexico, during which families celebrate their relatives that have passed. It is believed that during these three days, family members return to the living world to visit, therefore offerings are made to help them celebrate. You can read more about Día de los Muertos here. One of the most common food offerings is Pan de Muerto, or Dead Bread.

During school we would make and eat this bread at our Spanish class festivities. Traditional Dead Bread is an enriched yeast bread, made wth milk and eggs and flavored with anise seeds. However today we wanted to present an alternative to the traditional Dead Bread.

Our first variance from the tradition is the omission of anise seeds. Al is not a fan of anything licorice tasting at all, therefore we left them out.

Our next variance was born purely out of an accident. Our original recipe included sweetened condensed milk instead of whole milk. While perusing the options at the grocery store, we picked out a couple of cans of our go to brand, Eagle Brand but then we also decided to try a different brand, La Lechera. The La Lechera brand also had some other interesting options including Dulce de Leche Caramel. Very pleased with our purchases of all the different options, we waltzed home to make our Dead Bread. We decided to try the La Lechera sweetened condensed milk but with all the cans looking similar, instead of opening the correct can, we opened the Dulce de Leche Caramel. This is probably the best baking mistake we have ever made! The bread turned out extra moist with a deeper yellow color than other versions we have made with whole milk or sweetened condensed milk.

Another switch we made from tradition is the finishing of the bread with granulated sugar, which is usually sprinkled on right right after the loaf comes out of the oven. We love cinnamon so we decided to substitute cinnamon sugar and then we helped it adhere better by brushing melted butter on the top then sprinkling the cinnamon sugar onto the loaf.

Forming the shape of the Dead Bread is probably the most challenging step of this whole process. Traditionally the loaf is topped with a skull and crossbones. How elaborate this decoration is, is up to the baker. We kept it pretty simple. We took 8 ounces of the dough after the first rise and separated it into 5 pieces. With the remaining dough, we formed it into a round loaf and then made a golf ball sized indentation in the middle. Next, we formed the skull and crossbones. We rolled four of the pieces into cylinders, lightly brushed one side with water and placed them on the main loaf, meeting in the middle. The fifth piece we rolled into a ball and then flattened it slightly. We also brushed a little bit of water on the underside of this piece and placed it in the center, covering the mesh points of the crossbones, to be the skull.

One last tip before we share our recipe. While baking, leave the loaf uncovered for the first half of the baking time to allow the loaf to brown, then tent the loaf with a piece of aluminum foil to protect it from over browning and drying out.

An Untraditional Pan de Muerto

An Untraditional Pan de Muerto

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup warm water (110-115°F)
  • 1 packet (7 grams) active dry yeast
  • pinch of sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup La Lechera Dulce de Leche Caramel
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 to 5 cups all purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 scant tablespoon cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Pour the warm water into the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, add yeast and pinch of sugar. Mix to wet the yeast. Let sit for 10 minutes.
  2. In a small sauce pan, heat butter on low until just melted. Add Dulce de Leche Caramel. Whisk to combine. Make sure not to heat over 115°F.
  3. Crack the eggs into a medium bowl, whisk in salt and the warm butter and caramel mixture.
  4. Carefully add the egg mixture to the yeast mixing bowl.
  5. With dough hook attachment, mix to combine all of the liquid ingredients.
  6. While mixing, slowly add the flour a cup at a time. Once you have added 4 cups, keep adding a little until the dough comes away from the side of the bowl.
  7. Let the dough knead fro 5 minutes in the stand mixer.
  8. Spray a large mixing bowl with oil. Add the dough and cover with an oiled piece of plastic wrap. Let rise for an hour, until doubled.
  9. Cover a sheet pan with a piece of parchment paper.
  10. Remove 8 ounces of the dough and set aside.
  11. With the remaining dough, shape by folding it onto itself, forming a round loaf. Place on prepared baking sheet. Make an indentation in the center of the loaf about the size of a golf ball.
  12. Divide the 8 ounces of dough into 5 pieces (1.6 ounces) roll four into long cylinders (bones), roll the fifth portion into a ball (skull).
  13. Brush a small amount of water onto one side of each of the long cylinders (bones) and form a cross with each piece meeting in the indentation of the main loaf. Brush a small amount of water on the ball (skull) and press into center of loaf.
  14. Cover with oiled piece of plastic wrap and let rise for 40-60 minutes, until doubled.
  15. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  16. Bake for 35-45 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 200°F. Tent the loaf halfway through baking to avoid over browning.
  17. Remove loaf from oven.
  18. Mix granulated sugar and cinnamon.
  19. Working in sections, brush melted butter onto the loaf and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.
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Our newest Banana Bread obsession

Our newest Banana Bread obsession

posted in: Breakfast, Desserts, Food, Snacks | 0 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

We have previously posted several banana based recipes: Banana Chocolate Chip Scones, Banana Oatmeal Muffins, even dog treats. We have also featured our “Best” Banana Bread. However, the previous recipe for the “Best” Banana Bread has been dethroned as the “Best.” We still love that recipe but the one we are sharing today is even better.

Our new, favorite banana bread has walnuts in it, we had NO idea what we were missing out on! Use a food processor to pulse your nuts to get them finely chopped but be careful not to over process or you won’t be able to taste them in the bread.


Another lesson we have finally learned is lining the loaf pan with parchment paper before pouring the batter in. This makes the removal so much easier and you no longer have to hold your breath hoping the loaf comes out perfectly.

Our last tip is letting the eggs come to room temperature. Room temperature eggs allow for the incorporation of air and sugar to volumize the bread.

Best Banana Bread

Best Banana Bread

Ingredients

  • 2 cups (255 g) all purpose flour
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 T ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 1 1/2 cups (255 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 ripe bananas
  • 2 T sour cream
  • 1 T vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line loaf pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, baking soda, ground cinnamon, salt and walnuts. Set aside.
  3. Using a stand mixer with whisk attachment, whisk sugar and eggs on medium speed until they are light, fluffy and an off white color. About 10 minutes.
  4. While waiting for the sugar and egg mixture to whip, mash bananas and add sour cream and vanilla extract.
  5. After 10 minutes, while still whisking, drizzle in vegetable oil.
  6. Reduce speed to low, carefully add the banana mixture.
  7. Remove mixing bowl from stand mixer and gently fold in flour mixture.
  8. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake 75-85 minutes. Time will be dependent on how large your bananas are. Be careful not to overbake.
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Copycat Lawry’s Seasoned Salt

Copycat Lawry’s Seasoned Salt

posted in: Food, Ingredients | 2 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

We are big fans of the Food Network and one of our favorite tv chefs is Ree Drummond, aka The Pioneer Woman. If you watch the show, then you know that one of Ree’s favorite ingredients is Lawry’s Seasoned Salt.

We have seen it at the grocery store many times, but never felt compelled to grab a bottle and put it into our cart. However, one fine day last week, we decided to make breaded pork chops and saw Ree’s version used seasoned salt. We didn’t want to run to the grocery store, so decided to look up a copycat and version. It was so good, we have already added it to all of our favorite savory dishes and it adds a great punch.

The effect is subtle, but definitely there! It has that savory taste, that “umami.” Wikipedia says that umami means “brothy or meaty.” Basically, it’s our new favorite thing in the kitchen!

Copycat Lawry’s Seasoned Salt

Copycat Lawry’s Seasoned Salt

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cornstarch

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients and pour into a glass or plastic container.
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Two more new seasoning secrets we are keen to try are Kitchen Bouquet and Gravy Master. These are both supposed to enhance the meatiness of dishes.

Do you use Lawry’s Seasoning Salt? Have you tried Kitchen Bouquet or Gravy Master? We’re eager to know, so please share below! 🙂

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Our Favorite Cinnamon Apple Cake

Our Favorite Cinnamon Apple Cake

posted in: Desserts, Food | 8 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Thanksgiving week is here! Are you still undecided on what to serve for dessert? We are big fans of the traditional pumpkin pie while others are fans of apple pie or pecan pie. But what do you do choose if you don’t like any of the traditional choices? This terrific cinnamon apple cake might be the perfect solution!

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It is a moist cake since it has both butter and cream cheese in it, plus yummy apples. We love to use Granny Smith apples whenever apples are needed in a recipe, however any type of baking apple will do. If you like Rome or Honeycrisp, use those instead. We have been making cinnamon apple cake for years and have yet to tire of it.


This may be an unconventional tip, but this cake is even more delicious if you eat it cold. Sure it’s good fresh baked and at room temperature, but straight out of the fridge, this cake tastes divine! We feel that if you want to maximize the tastiness of this cake, eat it cold. So if you desire a non-traditional dessert, give this cake a try this week! Now, let’s bake!

Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium mixing bowl.
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Peel, core and thinly slice three Granny Smith apples and place in a medium mixing bowl.
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Mix 1/4 cup granulated sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon. Reserve 2 tablespoons of this mixture for later. Pour the remaining cinnamon sugar over the sliced apples.
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Stir to coat all of the slices.
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In a large bowl cream together 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, butter, cream cheese and vanilla. Mix until thoroughly combined.
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Add in eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
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Add the dry mixture.
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Stir in apples, taking care to make sure batter gets between every slice.
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Pour into greased 9 inch springform pan.
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Top with reserved cinnamon sugar.
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Bake at 350°F for 60-65 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.
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Let cool in pan for 15 minutes then release outer ring to let cake cool completely. Refrigerate leftovers.
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Serve warm cake with ice cream. Or enjoy a slice straight from the fridge. Delicious!
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Our Favorite Cinnamon Apple Cake

Our Favorite Cinnamon Apple Cake

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 c flour
  • 1 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 3 medium granny smith apples
  • 1 3/4 c granulated sugar, divided
  • 2 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 c butter, softened
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 6 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • Special Equipment: 9 inch springform pan

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Butter a 9 inch springform pan.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt.
  4. Peel, core and thinly slice the apples and place in a medium mixing bowl.
  5. In a small bowl mix together 1/4 cup granulated sugar and cinnamon. Set 2 tablespoons of this mixture aside for later. Pour the rest of the cinnamon sugar over the sliced apples and mix thoroughly.
  6. In a large bowl cream together 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, butter, vanilla and cream cheese. Mix until completely combined.
  7. Add eggs, one at a time, stirring well after each addition.
  8. Carefully stir in flour mixture.
  9. Stir in apples. Take your time, making sure to get the batter between the apple slices.
  10. Pour batter into prepared pan. Top with reserved cinnamon sugar.
  11. Bake 60-65 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool for 15 minutes in pan then release the outer ring. Cool completely then store in fridge.
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Fluffy and Delicious Dinner Rolls

Fluffy and Delicious Dinner Rolls

posted in: Food, Side Dishes | 1 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Thanksgiving is just a couple weeks away and if you are like us, you are probably in the beginning stages of assembling your menu. One major part of our Thanksgiving menu is rolls. We are devout carb lovers therefore a holiday dinner is not complete without fluffy dinner rolls.

Fluffy Dinner Rolls

When we were younger, we always bought Pillsbury Flaky Layers Biscuits to consume with our turkey and gravy. While these biscuits are delicious, they just aren’t the same as homemade bread. In a pinch or a nostalgic moment, we still eat these biscuits.

But since Thanksgiving is a great time to try new things on your menu, give these dinner rolls a try. They are simple to make and the end result is delicious.


To start, mix warm water and yeast in stand mixer bowl. Let sit for 10-15 minutes covered with a tea towel, until frothy.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
In a medium mixing bowl whisk together milk, egg, vegetable oil, sugar and salt.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Add the liquid mix to the yeast mixture. Stir to combine using the dough hook attachment.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Add all of the flour and mix until a shaggy dough has formed on level 2.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Continue kneading the dough for 8-10 minutes on level 2. Dough will be smooth, slightly tacky and will spring back when poked.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Spray large mixing bowl and a piece of plastic wrap with oil. Place dough in prepared bowl, then cover with the plastic wrap. Gently press the wrap onto the dough surface so it stays moist.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Cover bowl with tea towel and let rise 45-60 minutes, until doubled in size.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Carefully remove plastic wrap and place aside to reuse. Flour a cutting board and dump dough out.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Cut into 12 pieces. Fold each piece onto itself to form a smooth to then roll into balls. Place into 11×7 pan.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Cover pan with saved plastic wrap and tea towel. Let rise again about 30 minutes until pillowy and doubled in size.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Preheat oven to 375°F. Melt tablespoon of butter and gently brush onto tops of the risen rolls.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Bake 15-18 minutes until golden brown.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Devour one or three!
Fluffy Dinner Rolls

Fluffy and Delicious Dinner Rolls

Fluffy and Delicious Dinner Rolls

Ingredients

  • 1/2 c warm water (105-110°F)
  • 1 T active dry yeast
  • 1/2 c milk, room temperature
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 2 T vegetable oil
  • 2 T sugar
  • 1 t salt
  • 16 oz all purpose flour
  • 1 T butter
  • Special equipment: Stand mixer with dough hook

Instructions

  1. In a stand mixing bowl, combine warm water and yeast, stir to mix then cover with tea towel. Let sit 10-15 minutes until frothy.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together milk, egg, vegetable oil, sugar and salt. Add this to the yeast mixture.
  3. Stir a couple of times with the dough hook attachment to incorporate.
  4. Carefully add all of the flour to the mixing bowl. Mix until a shaggy dough forms.
  5. Then knead on level 2 for 8-10 minutes. Dough will be smooth, slightly tacky and will spring back when poked.
  6. Spray a large mixing bowl and a piece of plastic wrap with oil. Transfer dough to prepared bowl and cover the dough with the plastic wrap, pressing it around the dough. Cover bowl with tea towel and let rise for 45-60 minutes, until doubled in size.
  7. Lightly flour a cutting board. Carefully remove the plastic wrap and set aside to use again.
  8. Dump dough onto cutting board. Cut into 12 pieces, fold the pieces onto themselves and roll into balls. Place in an 11x7 pan.
  9. Cover with the oiled plastic wrap again and cover with tea towel. Let rise for about 30 minutes or until doubled in size and pillowy looking.
  10. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  11. Melt tablespoon of butter and lightly brush onto the risen rolls.
  12. Bake 15-18 minutes until lightly golden.
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Date Pecan Cookies

Date Pecan Cookies

posted in: Desserts, Food | 1 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Cookies are delicious any time. Our year-round of love of cookies is apparent from our previous recipes for Mini M&M Cookies and Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies. But once the weather starts to become cooler and the leaves start changing, cookies are even better. They warm your house and your soul at the same time!
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These Date Pecan Cookies are moist from the chopped dates but also a little crunchy with the chopped pecans. The hint of cinnamon is what really takes these cookies over the top! If you are a chocolate lover, you could also add chocolate chips to these cookies for added deliciousness.

We told you about how our Grandma was keen to distinguish between figs and dates in our recipe for Roasted Bacon-Wrapped, Blue Cheese-Stuffed Fresh Figs. When dried, figs and dates do look rather similar and upon further research, they have more similarities. We discovered that both have origins in the Middle East and have been cultivated for their delicious fruit since ancient times.

Furthermore, both plants can be quite drought tolerant. There is even a date farm in Yuma, Arizona: Martha’s Gardens. However, dates come from the date palm, while figs come from the deciduous Ficus carica tree of the mulberry family. We enjoy eating both! Now let’s start baking!


Mix the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a bowl.
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Cream together the butter and granulated sugar.
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Add eggs, one at a time and mix after each one. Then add vanilla.
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Add dry ingredients.
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Mix in chopped dates and pecans. Mix until incorporated. Refrigerate 2 hours or overnight.
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Dough will be very hard, use a heavy duty spoon to scoop heaping tablespoons of dough. Then roll in your hands to form a ball.
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Bake 10-11 minutes at 350°F.
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Let cool on wire rack then devour.
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Date Pecan Cookies

Date Pecan Cookies

Ingredients

  • 3 c flour
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 1 c butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 c granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2 c roughly chopped pecans
  • 1 1/2 c chopped, pitted dates

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
  2. Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
  4. Add vanilla and mix.
  5. Carefully add dry ingredients and mix until incorporated.
  6. Add pecans and dates, mix until evenly distributed.
  7. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill at least two hours or overnight.
  8. Preheat oven 350°F.
  9. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  10. Dough will be very hard, use a heavy duty spoon to scoop a heaping tablespoon of dough, then roll to form a ball. Continue with rest of dough.
  11. Bake 10-11 minutes until cookies are golden brown and center is cooked.
  12. Let cool on wire rack.
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The Best Brioche Buns!

The Best Brioche Buns!

posted in: Food, Main Dishes | 5 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

While we love a good hamburger bun from the grocery store, after a trip to Fuddruckers last month, we decided to try to make some hamburger buns of a similar caliber.

The brioche buns at Fuddruckers had a glorious sheen on them that you just can’t get from Sara Lee. Brioche is a French dough based on eggs and butter which give this bread a smooth texture and rich taste.

The Best Brioche Buns

We made our brioche buns free form, but you can use a pan like this one to make the buns completely uniform. The buns turned out to be fantastic and although it is a two day process, it is definitely worth the effort.

Here’s what you will need.
The Best Brioche Buns
Start by mixing the eggs, warm water, yeast and half of the flour.
The Best Brioche Buns
Mix one minute, until smooth.
The Best Brioche Buns
Cover bowl with tea towel and let rise 45 minutes. Mixture will have risen slightly and have lots of little bubbles on the surface.
The Best Brioche Buns
Add remaining flour, salt and sugar. Use dough hook to mix for 8 minutes on level 4.
The Best Brioche Buns
Dough will be moist, don’t add more flour. Add cubed butter, a little at a time until it has all been incorporated. Takes 7-8 minutes on level 4.
The Best Brioche Buns
Dough will be shiny and still moist at this point. Place dough into oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 24 hours.
The Best Brioche Buns


The dough will have doubled during its time in the fridge.
The Best Brioche Buns
Portion out the dough and form into flat disks. Cover with tea towel and let rise 30-45 minutes until doubled in size.
The Best Brioche Buns
Mix egg yolk and water to make egg wash.
The Best Brioche Buns
Gently brush egg wash over the tops of the buns.
The Best Brioche Buns
Bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes, until lightly browned.
The Best Brioche Buns
Slice the buns in half.
The Best Brioche Buns
Add your favorite burger recipe and top with delicious toppings!
The Best Brioche Buns

The Best Brioche Buns!

The Best Brioche Buns!

Ingredients

  • 480 grams all purpose flour, divided
  • 1 packet yeast (which equals 2 1/4 t)
  • 3/4 c warm water (between 105-110°F)
  • 4 eggs, room temperature
  • 3 T sugar
  • 1 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 c cold butter, cubed
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 T water

Instructions

  1. In Kitchen Aid mixing bowl, combine half of the flour (240 grams), yeast, water and eggs.
  2. Mix with with flat beater slowly to incorporate ingredients, then one minute on level 4, until smooth. Scrape off beater and remove. Scrape down side of bowl.
  3. Cover bowl with tea towel and let rise 45 minutes.
  4. Add remaining flour (240 grams), sugar and salt. Using dough hook, beat on low until all ingredients are incorporated.
  5. Beat 8 minutes on level 4, scrape down sides occasionally.
  6. Slowly add cubed butter, a couple of cubes at a time while the mixer is on level 4. Continue until butter is incorporated, about 7-8 minutes.
  7. Lightly oil a large mixing bowl. Transfer dough to prepared bowl, cover with plastic wrap. Place in refrigerator for 24 hours.
  8. Cover two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  9. Weigh the dough. Calculate how many grams or ounces you need to measure out for 8-10 buns. Portion out the dough and place onto prepared baking sheets, 4 or 5 per sheet. Roll dough into balls, then flatten into 3/4 inch disks.
  10. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  11. Cover baking sheets with tea towels and let rise 30-45 minutes, until doubled in size.
  12. Mix egg yolk and water. Brush mixture over the tops of the buns.
  13. Bake for 20-25 minutes until browned.
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Our Best, Beautiful Banana Bread

Our Best, Beautiful Banana Bread

posted in: Breakfast, Desserts, Food, Snacks | 6 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Our family loves bananas, we always have a supply on hand. Even when you eat them everyday, you can still get a couple that ripen too quickly and are better for baking than for eating alone. We have previously shared a couple of banana recipes: Banana Oatmeal Muffins and Banana Chocolate Chip Scones.

twitter beautiful banana bread

Today’s banana recipe is for the very best banana bread. We have tried lots of banana bread recipes and this is the only one that we can all agree tastes delicious. It is the same one our mom baked for us when we were little kids!

The most important ingredient in banana bread is of course B-A-N-A-N-A-S. Make sure to mash them up well, you don’t want too big of chunks in your bread.
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The dry ingredients, flour and baking soda.
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Softened butter and glorious granulated sugar.
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The butter and sugar creamed together.
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Add in the eggs and vanilla.
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The liquid mixture is now complete.
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Carefully add in the dry ingredients.
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Mix until incorporated.
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Now it’s time for the bananas.
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Take your time mixing in the bananas, at first it will be a little difficult but in the end, you have banana pieces all throughout.
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Pour the batter into a buttered loaf pan.
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Bake until a toothpick comes out clean.
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Slice and enjoy!

Banana Bread

Banana Bread

Ingredients

  • 3/4 c sugar
  • 1/2 c butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2 c flour
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Grease a 5x9 loaf pan.
  3. Cream butter and sugar.
  4. Add eggs and vanilla.
  5. Combine flour and baking soda, then add to liquid mixture.
  6. Stir in mashed bananas.
  7. Pour into prepared pan.
  8. Bake for 50-55 minutes or until toothpick inserted into middle comes out clean.
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Best After-School Snack: PB and A

Best After-School Snack: PB and A

posted in: Food, Snacks | 0 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

In this morning’s post, we harvested some apples at Apple Annie’s in Willcox, now we can put them to good use! Move over PB and J, get ready for PB and A. Peanut butter and apples are a wonderful combination, perfect for an after school snack. Or in our case, a mid-afternoon snack that has nothing to do with school.

To cut up the apples, we use this style of apple slicer.

Calphalon Easy Grip Apple Slicer

The main advantage to a slicer like this is speed. You can get eight slices in one fell swoop. But watch your fingers! The slicer can be hard to get started, but once you have momentum, it will cut everything in its path.

The main disadvantage to the slicer is its style of cutting. If you want your apple slices more dainty, you need a knife. You can only get 8 rather chunky slices out of it. You’re also stuck with that bit of core at the center of the slice. You can these features in the apple slices below. Most days it is a non-issue since we are so HANGRY by that time of the day.

Start by cutting your apples and getting out your peanut butter tub.

Peanut Butter and Apples - 1

Dole out about 2 tablespoons of PB into a microwave safe bowl and heat for about 15 seconds on high.


Now it’s time for the secret ingredient: Cinnamon Sugar. It was a staple during our childhood, a simple mix of warmth and sweetness that pairs ridiculously well with the salty fatty peanut butter. Eat this mix of PB and Cinnamon Sugar on toast, waffles, tortillas – all the carbs really – for a delicious snack.

Peanut Butter and Apples - 2

Stir to mix then devour your snack!

Peanut Butter and Apples - 3

The type of apple we used for this recipe was Gala, but we also enjoy McIntosh, Braeburn, and when we’re feeling sassy, Granny Smith. The Kitchn.com has compiled lists of the best apples for eating, cooking, and baking that are definitely worth checking out.

Peanut Butter and Apples

Peanut Butter and Apples

Ingredients

  • 1 Apple
  • 2 Tbsp Peanut Butter
  • Cinnamon Sugar

Instructions

  1. Carefully slice apple with knife or apple slicer.
  2. Heat the peanut butter in small microwave safe bowl in microwave for about 15 seconds on high.
  3. Sprinkle some cinnamon sugar on the peanut butter.
  4. Devour this yummy snack.
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All Time Favorite Mini M&M Cookies

All Time Favorite Mini M&M Cookies

posted in: Desserts, Food | 0 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

There is something magical about baking. Not only the magic of chemistry but also the magic of soothing the soul. Baking has a way of decreasing the stress of everyday life.

All Time Favorite Mini M&M Cookies

As you can tell from previous recipes, we love baked goods. We have shared our recipes for Banana Oatmeal Muffins and Peach Muffins. Last week, we also shared a recipe for Blueberry Crumble. Today, we wanted to share our favorite cookie recipe.

To us, a cookie should be sweet, soft, and include some form of chocolate. Our favorite form of chocolate for these cookies is mini M&Ms but you can use any kind, semi-sweet, milk, or dark. Whatever suits your fancy.

Another important characteristic for the perfect cookie is to not be over-baked. The cookie should be slightly brown on the bottom and just barely cooked in the middle. This yields a soft, moist cookie instead of a hard crumbly kind.

This recipe is quite fast. From beginning to end, it only takes 45 minutes to make 3 dozen cookies!

ALL TIME FAVORITE MINI M&M COOKIES

Combine dry ingredients (flour, salt, baking powder) in a bowl and set aside.

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 1

Place softened butter, granulated sugar, and packed brown sugar into electric mixer.

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 2

Cream together until fluffy.
Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 3

Prepare vanilla and 1 large egg.

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 4

Here is the batter after all wet ingredients have been combined.

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 5

Add the previously mixed dry ingredients into the batter.

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 6

Mmm cookie dough!

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 7


Get those Mini M&M’s ready!

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 8

Use a spatula or wooden spoon to mix in the M&M’s.

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 9

Scoop ’em out with a small ice cream scoop. Pop them into a preheated 350°F oven. Farewell, dear cookies. We shall meet again.

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 10

So much waiting!

 
10 minutes later…

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 11

Sweet Perfection!

Favorite Mini M&M Cookies - 12

All Time Favorite Mini M&M cookies

Yield: 36 cookies

All Time Favorite Mini M&M cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/8 t salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 c granulated sugar
  • 1/2 c brown sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 6 ounces mini M&Ms

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Line pan with parchment paper.
  3. In a medium bowl combine flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  4. Cream butter and both sugars together.
  5. Mix in egg and vanilla.
  6. Carefully mix in dry ingredients.
  7. Using spatula, fold in mini M&Ms.
  8. Scoop dough onto prepared pan, about 2 inches apart.
  9. Bake 9-10 minutes, until bottom is lightly brown.
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Perfect Rich and Sweet Blueberry Crumble (Grandma Inspired Fantastic Treat #5)

Perfect Rich and Sweet Blueberry Crumble (Grandma Inspired Fantastic Treat #5)

posted in: Desserts, Food, Grandma Inspired Fantastic Treats (GIFTs) | 2 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Our grandma was born in Oregon, the third highest cultivator of blueberries in the US, behind Michigan and Georgia. But that is not the only reason this recipe reminds us of our grandma.

Grandma Inspired Blueberry Crumble

The second reason was her dentures. She had “soft teeth” from an early age and consequently, she was sporting dentures before her twentieth birthday. She wasn’t bashful about it either. She considered it a talking point and even a point of pride, for no one else she knew had been wearing dentures for so long.

Anyway, whenever we would go grocery shopping with her, we would pass the blueberries. Then we would joke and ask her if she wanted some, and she would exclaim, “NOOOO, they turn my teeth BLUUUUE!” and then she would laugh, which in turn made us laugh.


We actually have a love-hate relationship with blueberries ourselves. Like Forrest Gump said, “You never know what you’re going to get,” and that is a disconcerting fact about these little indigo orbs. Sometimes they can be so squishy. That being said, blueberries have been proven to have several health benefits, including being high in antioxidants and a low Glycemic Index.

This Grandma-Inspired Fantastic Treat is a deliciously sweet blueberry crumble. It manages to make blueberries delicious and brings a smile to our faces with memories of our grandma.

For the Crust and Crumble

Combine sugar, flour, baking powder, diced butter, egg, and salt in a food processor. Mix until roughly the size of peas.

blueberry crumble - 1

Here is the texture we’re looking for.

blueberry crumble - 2

Press half of the crumb mixture into the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan.

blueberry crumble - 3

For the Filling

blueberry crumble - 4

Whisk together lemon juice, granulated sugar, vanilla and cornstarch. Then pour over the blueberries, giving them a gentle stir to coat. The cornstarch will help keep the filling together.

blueberry crumble - 5

The blueberries are ready for action. Pour them over the bottom layer of crumble and tilt the pan around for even liquid distribution.

blueberry crumble - 6

Top with the other half of the crumb topping. It’s ready to go into the oven!

blueberry crumble - 7

Bake for 35 minutes in a 350°F preheated oven.

blueberry crumble - 8

And there you have it, perfect blueberry crumble. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream for yummy deliciousness.

Mind the dentures though, this stuff stains. ?

blueberry crumble - 9

Blueberry Crumble

Blueberry Crumble

Ingredients

  • 1 c granulated sugar
  • 3 c flour
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1 c butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 4 cups blueberries
  • 1/4 c lemon juice
  • 1/2 c granulated sugar
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 4 t cornstarch

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Grease 13x9 pan with butter
  3. Using a food processor, mix first 6 ingredients
  4. Pour about 1/2 of the crumb mix into the prepared pan
  5. Press crumb mix with fingers to compact the bottom layer
  6. Whisk together lemon juice, granulated sugar, vanilla and cornstarch
  7. Pour liquid mixture over blueberries and gently fold to coat all the berries
  8. Pour blueberry mix into pan over the crumb layer
  9. Tilt pan slightly to move the liquid all over the crumb layer
  10. Maneuver blueberries into a uniform layer
  11. Pour remaining crumb mix over the top
  12. Bake about 35 minutes, until top is golden brown
  13. Let cool and store in refrigerator
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Grandma’s Sweet and Savory Teriyaki Chicken (GIFT #2)

Grandma’s Sweet and Savory Teriyaki Chicken (GIFT #2)

posted in: Food, Grandma Inspired Fantastic Treats (GIFTs), Main Dishes | 0 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

This is the second post in our blog series, Grandma-Inspired Fantastic Treats (GIFTs). Today’s treat is our Grandma’s recipe for teriyaki chicken.

sugar, karo, ground ginger, soy sauce, chicken

She would make this dish for special Japanese holidays including New Year’s, Boy’s Day and Girl’s Day. For this recipe, you can use any cut of meat. This time we used chicken breast, however, when our grandma made it, she always used chicken thighs. The dark meat takes on the marinade really well.

sugar, karo, ground ginger, soy sauce, chicken

This teriyaki sauce is delectable, sweet and salty. A hint of umami. So good. It might be the Karo syrup… ?

I remember seeing that stuff in the cupboard when I was a kid, before the whole anti-corn syrup movement, and wondering what is that goo? I had no idea it was made from actual corn! Ha. In case you’re interested in corn and food, here’s an informative article from the Washington Post: How corn made its way into just about everything we eat.

teriyaki chicken sauce

After boiling, the ingredients come together to this wonderfully thick and shiny sauce. Cool marinade to room temperature and add to cut up chicken.

sugar, karo, ground ginger, soy sauce, chicken

We do all our marinating in gallon size ziploc bags. Stand the bag up in a large bowl to avoid spills.

sugar, karo, ground ginger, soy sauce, chicken

Ready to go in the fridge overnight.

sugar, karo, ground ginger, soy sauce, chicken

After baking at 325°F for an hour, you get… Grandma’s Sweet and Savory Teriyaki Chicken!!!

sugar, karo, ground ginger, soy sauce, chicken

While Grandma loved making Teriyaki Chicken, her favorite fast food joint was… you guessed it, Panda Express. Both our grandparents loved their orange sauce and mandarin teriyaki sauce. Panda Express is still a wonderful guilty pleasure for us, and while it is neither healthy nor artisanal, there is still something very comforting about sliding your tray down the line, drooling over greasy noodles and crab rangoons.

 

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Grandma's Sweet and Savory Teriyaki Chicken

Grandma's Sweet and Savory Teriyaki Chicken

Ingredients

  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup Karo Light
  • 1/8 cup mirin
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 t ginger powder
  • 2-3 pounds chicken breast

Instructions

  1. Mix all ingredients EXCEPT the chicken in a medium saucepan
  2. Boil for 10 minutes
  3. Let cool
  4. Cut chicken into about 1 inch cubes
  5. Place chicken into gallon ziploc and pour sauce in
  6. Press air out of bag and massage so marinade is touching all sides of chicken
  7. Marinate overnight
  8. Preheat oven to 325°F
  9. Pour chicken into a baking dish and cover with aluminum foil
  10. Bake 30 minutes, turn pieces, bake another 30 minutes
  11. Chicken will be done when internal temperature reaches 165°F
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