Sunday, October 30, 2011

Doughnut Muffins

  October 29 and SNOWING?!?! No, I am definitely not ready for that! It was very pretty, but it is still October after all! It was snowing a bit Friday night, but I really was not expecting it to amount to much at all....well, to my surprise when I woke up Saturday morning it was still snowing and the ground was white. Not cool, especially when it is still supposed to be fall. Thankfully it didn't last too long and the sun soon melted most of it. Have you figured out yet that I am not a big fan of winter? =) I try not to complain too much though because it is a part of God's planning and creation.
   Daren was getting off shift and I wanted to have breakfast ready for him when he got home. I hadn't made muffins for awhile, {at least not for ourselves} and wanted to try some that I had never made. I found this recipe and it sounded easy and good so decided to try them.
Doughnut Muffins
 yield: 24 mini muffins
   1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, melted
3/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup flour

1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
Mix sugar, butter and nutmeg in a bowl. Stir in the milk. Mix in baking powder and flour just until combined.
Grease 24 mini muffin cups. Fill about half full with the batter. Bake @ 350* for 15-20 minutes until tops are lightly golden.
Meanwhile melt the butter. In a separate bowl mix the sugar and cinnamon. When the muffins are finished baking remove from the tins, dip in butter and roll in the sugar mixture. Let cool.

  They turned out great....really did taste kinda like a doughnut. {I think it's the nutmeg} I love the small size too, especially when your serving other things as well. A regular sized muffin can be a bit too much. For breakfast this morning I stuck them in the microwave to warm them up a little and ate them with a cup of hot tea....almost enjoyed them more the second time around! =)

Better is one day in Your courts
than a thousand elsewhere.
~Psalm 84:10

Blessing on your day! =)
♥ Sheila 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Tangy BBQ Chicken Wings

   I was at Mom's the other day and saw this recipe. She said they really liked them and I had some wings in the freezer, so I copied it off and brought it home hoping to give them a shot in the near future.
  We had an appointment last evening to get our photo taken for the new church directory and since these wings are done in the crockpot I thought it would be great to come home and have dinner waiting. Dug the wings out of the freezer to thaw, prepared everything and stuck them in the crockpot to cook.
  Put some potatoes in the oven on time bake and got broccoli out of the freezer to thaw, so when we got home all that I needed to do was cook the broccoli. {which I just fried in a skillet with olive oil and seasonings until tender crisp} We were sitting down to eat in a little bit of no time which was great because I was hungry!! ;) 

Tangy BBQ Chicken Wings with
Homemade Ranch Sauce

  •  5 lbs chicken wings, thawed
  • 2 1/2 cups ketchup
  • 2/3 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2-1 tsp liquid smoke {optional}
Place the thawed wings on a greased 11x15 baking sheet. Bake uncovered @ 375* for 25 minutes. Drain. Turn wings and bake for 25 minutes until juices run clear. Combine BBQ sauce ingredients and boil for 5 minutes. Place half of the wings in crock pot and cover with half of the sauce. Add remaining wings and sauce. Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours. {I cooked them for 4 and they were almost too done so think 3- 3 1/2 hrs would be good}

Ranch Sauce:
1 1/4 cups sour cream
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tbsp cilantro
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
Blend together well and serve with wings.
    I made them just like the recipe this time, but when I make them again I'm going to spice them up a bit. They were really tasty like this, but we like spicy food and I think it would make them even better.


Therefore do not worry about tomorrow,
for tomorrow will worry about itself.
each day has enough trouble
of its own.
~Matthew 6:34

Much love! =)
♥ Sheila  

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Craving Pasta

  As I'm sure a lot of you know Daren and I are expecting our first child around April 21! So far I am getting along great; was really tired at first but no sickness as of yet. Hoping and praying that it continues this way! =) The craving has definitely begun far being pizza {which makes Daren extremely happy because he loves it and I'm normally not just that crazy about it} and pasta, not exactly the best things to be eating a lot of. :/ I have had to give in and just go for it a time or so though.
  We have wanted to try our hand at making pasta for awhile now, so when I saw a guy on the food network making homemade ravioli I told Daren "We need to make that." I couldn't stop thinking about it then....I really wanted ravioli!!! Well, we didn't get it done right away and then I saw this easy peasy pasta recipe and knew that was what I was making for dinner the next night. =) I had an idea of what flavors I wanted in the ravioli so I did some research and came up with a few different recipes, combined them and added some things I thought would be good and was very excited with how they turned out. Daren said it was some of the best ravioli that he had ever eaten.
  I had about half of the filling left so I want to make more and then put them in the freezer before cooking. They would be great to pull out for a quick meal or if you want to serve them to guests since it wouldn't take as long to prepare. The only thing you would have to make is the sauce, and that is a quick fix. 

Homemade Spinach Ricotta Ravioli with Sun-dried Tomato and Basil Sauce
  • 2 cups flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
Mound the flour on a clean work surface. Using a fork make a well with high sides in the middle of the flour. Crack the eggs into the well. Add in salt and oil. Using a fork beat the eggs and slowly incorporate the flour by pulling it in from the sides of the well. As you continue to add more flour and mix, the dough will start coming together. Using your hands the fork or a scraper work the dough until it comes together. Knead for 8-10 minutes until smooth and elastic. wrap in plastic wrap and let sit for about 20 minutes. {or while you make the filling}
Spinach Ricotta Filling:
  • 1 lb fresh or frozen spinach
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 lb ricotta
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp heavy cream {I used half & half}
  • 4 tbsp fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • pinch black pepper
Cook the spinach with half the salt until tender. Remove spinach from water and let cool for 2-3 minutes. Squeeze out the water and chop it up roughly if it's not already chopped. Mix together spinach, ricotta, egg, cream and cheese. Season with nutmeg, remaining salt and pepper.
Sprinkle flour on a baking sheet; set aside. Take the pasta dough and divide into four parts. Flour your work surface liberally. Roll the dough out very thin with a floured rolling pin; making the longest thinnest piece you can. Once the dough is rolled place a rounded tsp of filling on the dough {along the edge so it can be folded over} about 1-1 1/2" apart. Fold the dough over top and seal well. Using a sharp knife cut a square around each little pile of filling. Take a fork and press around all the edges of each square to seal them off. Place onto the floured baking sheet.  {At this point you can place the raviolis in the freezer for 24 hrs then transfer to a freezer bag for when you need a quick meal}
To cook the ravioli, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Drop in the raviolis and stir gently. When they float to the top they are finished cooking. Drain and then either pour the sauce over all and gently stir to coat or arrange on a plate and pour the sauce over top.
Sun-dried Tomato & Basil Sauce:
  • 1 1/3 cups heavy cream {I used half & half}
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4-6 sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 10 fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • fresh ground pepper to taste
Place all ingredients into a kettle. Cook and stir over medium heat until slightly thickened. Pour over cooked raviolis and toss gently to coat or arrange on a plate and pour over top. Garnish with fresh grated Parmesan cheese.   
 Sooo delicious!!

For You created my inmost being;
You knit me together in my mother's womb.
I will praise You because I am
fearfully and wonderfully made; 
Your works are wonderful,
 I know that full well.
~Psalm 139:13 & 14 

Have a relaxing, rainy evening! =)
♥ Sheila  

Friday, October 07, 2011

Caramel Apple Cider Cookies

  Pintrest....there is a positive and a negative side to this site! I have just recently joined and I really love it, probably too much. :/ The positive side is that you can find and be inspired by sooo many great ideas, but on the flip side I spend entirely too much time on the computer because of it. And yes, that is most definitely my fault not pintrest's. =)
  Anyway this wonderful recipe is a result of my time spent browsing on the site! I knew as soon as I saw it that I would be making them in the near future. I worked Wednesday so I got all the ingredients that I needed and baked them Thursday morning after Daren left for work.

Caramel Apple Cider Cookies 
  •  1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 box (7.4 oz) Original Alpine Instant Spiced Cider Mix- all 10 packs {I used a scant cup of bulk spiced cider mix from The Cheese Place
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp baking soda 
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 bag (14 oz.) Kraft caramels
Cream together butter, sugar, salt and cider mix until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time. Add vanilla and mix well. Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder and cinnamon. Gradually add to the egg mixture. Mix just until combined.  Unwrap the caramels and then use a cookie scoop to shape out the cookies. Fill the scoop with dough and then press a caramel into the scoop until a small amount of dough squishes out around it.
Using your finger cover the caramel completely with the dough that is around it.
Such an easy way to do this...takes a bit more time ,but not too much. And you have perfect little cookies! =) 
Bake @ 350* for 10-12 minutes, just until edges are slightly brown. Do not over bake! Let them cool on the tray for 2-3 minutes and then transfer to cooling racks cover with wax or parchment paper.
  Since I used a new product from work {the spiced cider mix} I took some cookies down for those who were working to try. I also took some into Daren and the guys at the fire station, and they were quite happy. The one guy really liked them and  wanted to take some home for his wife, so I left some there before I came home. 
  So yes, pintrest is addictive, but I probably wouldn't have found these delicious little guys if I hadn't been on there. =) I will be forever happy that I did find them!
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly, and to love mercy
and to walk humbly
with your God.
~Micah 6:8

Blessings! =)
♥ Sheila