Friday, September 30, 2016

Life is full of choices

Image result for leaving a legacy

"Please think about your legacy, because you're writing it every day." 

Caramel Apple Blondie Cheesecake

Apple Spice Blondie
3/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
3 tsp vanilla
1 egg
1 egg white
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp apple pie spice
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 apple, chopped

Caramel Cheesecake

16 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup caramel sauce*
1/2 tsp apple pie spice
4 oz cool whip
Cinnamon Apples
1 1/2 apples, thinly sliced
2 tsp lemon juice
pinch of nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
4 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp butter

Cinnamon Whipped Cream

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon

1. Line the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan with parchment paper and grease the sides. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Melt the butter in a microwave safe bowl, then transfer to a mixing bowl.
3. Add brown sugar and whisk to combine.
4. Add the vanilla, egg and egg white and whisk until incorporated
5. In another bowl, combine dry ingredients.
6. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet ingredients until combined.
7. Fold in finely chopped apples.
8. Pour batter into springform pan and bake for 30­33 minutes.
9. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes, then remove to finish cooling.
10. Make the caramel sauce and allow to cool completely.
11. Once the blondie and caramel are cool, make the cheesecake. Beat cream cheese and sugars until smooth.
12. Add about 3/4 cup of caramel sauce and apple pie spice and mix until combined.
13. Fold in Cool Whip.
14. Place blondie back into the springform pan.
15. Spread cheesecake evenly on top of blondie, then put in refrigerator until firm about 3-­4 hours.
16. Combine apples, lemon juice, nutmeg, cinnamon and brown sugar in a medium saucepan and toss to coat.
17. Add butter and cook apples on medium­ high for about 15­-20 minutes, or until at preferred softness.
18. Allow apples to cool for 10­-15 minutes, then put on top of cheesecake.
19. To make cinnamon whipped cream, freeze a metal bowl and whisk attachment for 10­-15 minutes.
20. Remove bowl from freezer, add heavy whipping cream, and whip on high speed until it begins to thicken.
21. Add powdered sugar and cinnamon and whip until it you get stiff peaks.
22. Pipe whipped cream around edges of cheesecake.
23. Drizzle more caramel sauce over finished cheesecake, if desired.

*recipe for caramel sauce makes about 1 1/2 cups worth of caramel. I made a whole recipe and used about half of it in the cheesecake and then drizzled more over the top of the cheesecake. You'll end up with leftover caramel.

Be proud of this

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Apple Pie Cake



cup Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, cut into small pieces

Apple Mixture

apples, peeled, thinly sliced
tablespoons packed brown sugar
teaspoon ground cinnamon
teaspoons lemon juice


box Betty Crocker™ SuperMoist™ yellow cake mix
1 1/3 cups water 
1/3 cup oil 


1. Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Spray bottom and sides of 13x9-inch pan with baking spray with flour.
2. In medium bowl, stir together flour, 1/2 cup brown sugar and the salt. With pastry blender or fork, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Set aside.
3. In another medium bowl, gently stir together Apple Mixture ingredients; set aside.
4. In large bowl, beat Cake ingredients with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds, then on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into pan.
5. Spread apple mixture evenly over cake batter. Sprinkle Topping evenly over top.
6. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

It is the inside that counts

Knit one purl two

Cozy is good

Have a wonderfully purrrrrrrfect day

Cake Mix Waffles

I used a box of Duncan Hines chocolate cake mix and followed the instructions to make the cake batter. This recipe called for either water or milk and I used milk.

Cake Mix Waffles


  • 3 Eggs

Baking & Spices

  • 1 box Betty crocker supermoist cake mix

Oils & Vinegars

  • 1/3 cup Vegetable oil


  • 1 1/3 cups Water
Follow the instructions of your waffle maker on how to make waffles. Do the very same thing. For the Cuisinart Breakfast Central, it comes with a scooper. One scoop of batter goes in the waffle maker.
Spread the batter evenly with a heat resistant spatula. Close the lid and turn it 180 degrees. Wait until the Breakfast Central beeps and then your waffle is ready.
Like I said before, make sure you put a scoop of ice cream on the waffle while warm. You will not regret it. I am sure the cake would be just as great with different flavours of cake mix. Next time I think I will try making funfetti cake waffles. Colourful and fun, it will surely be a huge hit!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016


leaves are beginning to fall

Shredded Chicken & Rice Stuffed Peppers (Halloween Style)

Slow Cooker Shredded Taco Chicken

2 chicken breasts
1 teaspoon cumin
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 can diced tomatoes with green chilies

Add chicken to the bottom of the slow cooker, sprinkle seasonings on top and then cover with diced tomatoes. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 4-6 hours. Shred chicken and allow it to remain in sauce.

Stuffed Peppers

4 bell peppers your choice of color
2 cups Mexican rice (recipe below)
1 shredded chicken breast from the above recipe
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 can black beans rinsed and drained

Bring a large pot of water to boil.  While you are waiting for the water to boil, rinse peppers, slice off the tops and hollow out the insides, be sure to remove any seeds and the white part inside. If desired, use a small paring knife to cut out a jack-o-lantern face. When water is boiling, put the peppers and tops in and allow to cook for about 5 minutes until peppers are tender.  Remove from water and set aside to cool.  Mix the cooked rice, shredded chicken, cheddar cheese, and black beans together in a large bowl.  Fill each pepper with the chicken and rice mixture and top with extra cheese, if desired. Replace pepper top back on top. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes until cheese is melted and pepper is done to desired tenderness.  Alternately, once peppers are stuffed, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate, when ready to cook, preheat oven to 350, remove plastic wrap and bake for 1 hour.

Mexican Rice

1 tablespoon oil
1 cup uncooked long grain white rice
1/2 cup tomato sauce
2 cups water (or 1 can chicken broth-omit the chicken base/bouillon)
1 tsp chicken base or chicken bouillon
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp taco seasoning

Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add rice and stir often, until rice turns a nice golden toasty color. Add the seasonings and cook for 30 seconds until fragrant, add tomato sauce and water and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low (make sure a simmer is still maintained) and cook for 20-25 minutes until rice is tender. Mix and fluff with a fork.

Monday, September 19, 2016


a river cuts through a rock, not because of its power but its persistence.

Apple Pecan Cake with Caramel Glaze


1½ cups of cooking oil
2 cups sugar
4 Eggs
3 cups of flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
2 tsps vanilla
3½ cups Granny Smith apples (approximately 3-­4 apples), peeled and chopped
1 cup of chopped pecans
Caramel Glaze
¾ cups butter (1½ sticks)
1 cup light brown sugar
¼ cup milk
1 tsp vanilla


1. Preheat oven to 325°
2. In a large mixing bowl, add oil, sugar and eggs, mix until nice and creamy.
3. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Add to large bowl. Mix
4. Add vanilla, mix well.
5. Stir in apples and pecans.
6. Pour into generously greased and floured tube pan (you can use two loaf pans in place of a tube pan).
7. Bake at 325° for approximately 1 hour. Check using a tooth pick at about 50 minutes, and if it comes out
clean, then your cake is done. If using the loaf pans, make sure to check it at about 50 minutes as well.

Making the glaze

1. In a small pan, melt butter over low heat.
2. Stir in brown sugar and milk.
3. Bring to a boil over low heat, then reduce to a simmer, stirring constantly.
4. Let boil for 10 minutes, continue stirring.
5. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Stir. Let cool.
6. Once caramel glaze has cooled a bit, pour over the top of cake.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

White Chocolate Reese’s Pieces Peanut Butter Chip Cookies


2 1/2 cups all­purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup + 2 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup peanut butter chips
1/2 cup Reese's Pieces


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees (F). Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper and
set aside. In a medium sized bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, and sea salt;
set aside.
2. Add the sugars, vanilla, and butter to a large bowl and whisk until light and fluffy;
about 2 minutes (I recommend using a stand mixer/ handheld mixer to help here, if you
have one). Add the eggs and beat quickly – for only about 30 seconds – until they're
just combined. Let the mixture rest for 5 minutes, then beat the eggs for another 30
seconds. Gently fold in the flour mixture with a rubber spatula, stirring only until the
flour begins to disappear. Fold in white chocolate, peanut butter chips, and Reese's
3. Roll 3 tablespoon sized balls of dough between your palms to form a ball (they should
be big; almost a 1/4 cup), then place on prepared sheet (make sure to leave enough
room in between each cookie for inevitable spreading). Continue this process until all
the dough has been rolled. Place baking sheets in preheated oven and bake for 11
minutes, or until golden at the edges but still soft in the middle. Let cookies cool for 5
minutes on the sheet before transferring to a wire wrack to cool completely.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

no limits

One day can change everything

Zucchini Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting



box Betty Crocker™ SuperMoist™ yellow cake mix
cup milk 
cup butter, melted
teaspoons ground cinnamon
teaspoon ground ginger
teaspoon ground nutmeg
cups coarsely shredded zucchini (about 2 medium) 
cup chopped walnuts


package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
cup butter, softened
teaspoon ground cinnamon
teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2
cups powdered sugar


  • Heat oven to 350°F. Spray bottom only of 13 x 9-inch pan with cooking spray.
  • In large bowl, beat cake mix, milk, 1/2 cup melted butter, the eggs, 2 teaspoons cinnamon, the ginger and nutmeg with electric mixer on medium speed 2 minutes. Stir in zucchini and walnuts. Pour batter into pan.
  • Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven to cooling rack. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
  •  In large bowl, beat cream cheese and 1/4 cup softened butter with electric mixer on medium-high speed until smooth. Beat in 1 teaspoon cinnamon and the vanilla. On low speed, beat in powdered sugar until frosting is smooth and creamy. Spread frosting on cake. Cut into 4 rows by 3 rows. Cover and refrigerate any remaining cake.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Welcome Home Nolan

Served with Love returned with Honor. 
Well Done!!!

Even though you have removed the plastic name tag that seemed an inseparable part of who you were, you still carry the name of the Savior with you every day.

Chocolate Brownie Layer Cake with Cookie Dough Frosting


1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons dark unsweetened cocoa powder
16 ½ oz dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 ½ cupunsalted butter
2 ¼ cups granulated sugar
¾ cups packed light brown sugar
7 eggs at room temperature
3 tsp vanilla extract

To make the Brownies

1. Preheat the oven to 350 . Butter and line a 9" springform or cake tin.
2.. Put the chocolate and butter in a large bowl and set it over a saucepan of simmering water or place in the microwave. Stirring occasionally, until the chocolate and butter are completely melted and smooth. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool a little.
3. Add the sugars. Whisk until completely combined. The mixture should be room temperature.
4. Whisk the eggs and vanilla in a jug together. Add a little of the eggs to the chocolate mixture and whisk until combined. Add the remaining eggs and whisk until combined. Do not overbeat the batter at this stage or your brownies will be cakey.
5. Sift the flour, salt and cocoa over the chocolate mixture. Using a rubber spatula (not a whisk), fold the flour mixture into the chocolate until just a bit of the flour mixture is visible.
6. Pour the batter into your lined and buttered. Bake in the center of the oven on a tray for 1 hour 20 minutes. This is a very heavy brownie and does need quite some time to cook.
There should be still a jiggle in the center of the cake, that says it fudgy in the middle.
7. Let the brownies cool completely before cutting. It can be made up to 2 days in advance or it can be frozen beforehand also.

8. Store at room temperature in an airtight container.



1 cup cream cheese, softened
10 Tbsp. butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
4 Tbsp. milk, more if needed to reach desired consistency
1 cup flour
6 cups powdered sugar, more if needed to reach desired consistency
1 cup mini chocolate chips

1. Cream softened cream cheese and butter together in a large bowl.
2. Add brown sugar and vanilla and evenly beat together.
3. Add powdered sugar and whisk to evenly incorporate until smooth. (If you need to add a little milk to thin it, feel free to do so. I prefer my frosting thick so I never needed to)
4. Next add in the milk, flour and mini chocolate chips.
5. Wrap the frosting and set it in the fridge for about 15 minutes. It thickens up pretty nicely and make it easier to work with.
6. You can also make it up to 2 days in advance and lake it out of the fridge 45 minutes before you want to use it to soften.
7. Frost cake accordingly.


8 oz bittersweet chocolate 
1 cup heavy cream

To make the ganache: Heat the cream in a heavy bottom saucepan. When it reaches a simmer, take it off the heat and pour it over the chopped chocolate. Let it sit there for 3-4 minutes on the chocolate and then whisk until the chocolate has melted.

Drizzle the ganache over the chocolate cake. It it drip over the sides. This is an easy way to decorate a cake.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Trust your struggle . . . it's part of your story

Super Yummy Raspberry Cheesecake Bars

· 1 (1 lb. 1.5 oz.) pouch Betty Crocker sugar cookie mix
· ½ cup firm butter
· 2 (8 oz.) packages softened cream cheese
· ½ cup white sugar
· 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
· 1 teaspoon vanilla
· 1 egg
· 1 (21 oz.) can Wilderness Premium raspberry pie filling*

Preheat oven to 350° F. Spray bottom and sides of 9×13-inch pan with cooking spray. Pour sugar cookie mix into big bowl. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly and coarse. Set aside 1½ cups of mix for later (topping) and press remaining crumbs in the bottom of the 9×13 pan. Bake for 10 minutes; do not overbake. Put cream cheese, sugar, flour, vanilla, and egg in large bowl. Beat together with electric mixer (medium speed) until smooth.

Spread cream cheese mix evenly over crust. Spoon raspberry pie filling over the cream cheese; spread evenly. Take remaining 1½ cups of unbaked crumbs and sprinkle over top. Bake 35–40 minutes or until crumbs on top are lightly golden brown. Cool 30 minutes, refrigerate about 2 hours to chill. Cut into bars. Store covered in fridge. Makes 24 bars.

* Easily substituted with cherry or strawberry fillings.

Monday, September 12, 2016

You are the author of your life. If you are unhappy . . .

Chocolate Zucchini Muffins


1 1/3
cups Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour
cup packed brown sugar
cup unsweetened baking cocoa
teaspoon baking soda
teaspoon salt
cup buttermilk
cup butter, melted 
teaspoon vanilla
cup coarsely shredded zucchini (about 1 medium) 
cup semisweet chocolate chips
cup chopped walnuts


  • Heat oven to 375°F. Place paper baking cup in each of 12 regular-size muffin cups.
  • In large bowl, stir flour, brown sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt with spoon. In small bowl, beat buttermilk, melted butter, egg and vanilla with whisk until blended. Pour buttermilk mixture into flour mixture; stir until just moistened. Stir in zucchini, chocolate chips and walnuts. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups.
  • Bake 20 to 24 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes; remove from pan. Serve warm or cool.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Flight 93 Let's Roll


We must never forget


Caramel Apple Fruit Pizza


Sugar Cookie Crust:

¼ cup butter
¼ cup shortening
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 egg
½ tsp vanilla
½ tsp salt
½ tsp baking powder
1¼ cups flour

Caramel Apple Fruit Pizza:

2 large apples, diced (about 2 cups)
1½ cups club soda water
½ cup chopped pecans, toasted
½ cup caramel sauce

Cream Cheese Frosting:

4 oz package cream cheese, softened
¼ cup butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp half­-­half, if necessary


Sugar Cookie Crust:

1. Beat the butter and shortening together.
2. Add granulated sugar and cream together for 2­3 minutes until lighter in color and fluffier in texture.
3. Mix in the egg and vanilla.
4. Mix in the baking powder, salt, and flour.
5. Press dough into a greased 9­inch springform pan.
6. Bake at 375 degrees for 15­-17 minutes.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

1. Beat the cream cheese until smooth.
2. Beat in the softened butter.
3. Mix in powdered sugar.
4. Add vanilla and half­-­half, if necessary.


1. Put the diced apples in the club soda water immediately after dicing them. Soak them in the water for about 3
minutes and then drain the water.
2. Spread the prepared cream cheese frosting on the cooled sugar cookie crust.
3. Top with the diced apples, sprinkle with chopped pecans and drizzle the caramel sauce over the top.