DIY VANILLA EXTRACT – The baker on your list will appreciate this gift. I use my extract almost daily and make several bottles at a time so I never run out.
It’s almost here. Christmas is just a few days away. I still haven’t finished my shopping. I know. I know. Maybe some of y’all are in the same boat? Maybe. In comes DIY EDIBLE HOLIDAY GIFTS to rescue us. For not a lot of money and very little time involved you can make gifts that are sure to please the culinary enthusiasts on your lists. From Homemade Vanilla Extract to Homemade Amaretto to Infused Olive Oil we’ve got something to choose from to help you cross some names off your list. If you wanted to go even further you could even create gift baskets using your Edible Gift and create a theme around that gift.
I like cake. No, not true. I LOVE cake. I don’t mind baking cakes, because I get to eat said cake. However, I have never considered myself a cake decorator. I can bake you a delicious cake, but the decorating part isn’t my forte. I know my strengths and weaknesses. Doesn’t stop me from trying to do things I’m not the best at though. It does however encourage me to find different paths, and this is one of those paths. The Naked Cake. It’s my new cake best friend. Why? Because it’s a not so good at cake decorating kinda cake. Never mind that it’s currently super trendy. I will be making this cake for all of always.
A steakhouse strip roast isn’t as hard to prepare as you might imagine. I know the upscale steakhouses would like you to believe that they are, but I’m here to tell you they’re really not. It’s the perfect centerpiece for your upcoming holiday meal this month, and with a little help from Harris Teeter you’ll be well on your way to impressing your family and dinner guests.
Besides having all the ingredients you need for your holiday meals, Harris Teeter can make your life a little easier when you use its Express Lane service. Have you heard of this service? I went through the Express Lane and can tell you firsthand it couldn’t be easier. You simply do your shopping online (in your pajamas, if you choose), select the date and time you’d like to pick up your order, then show up in the Express Lane to pick it up. Easy peasy, right?
Yes, I said no bake. It’s my favorite kind of cheesecake. Because as much as I love a baked cheesecake, they take time and tend to crack. I get a little sad after all that work and it cracks down the middle. Am I the only one? Please tell me the cracks bother you too? I realize it’s an easy fix you just slather it with your favorite topping. I still it’s under there. Taunting me. Okay I may have cheesecake issues. Also, as a side note, I’m always perplexed that a cheesecake has the word cake in it’s title. I mean, it’s more pie like isn’t it?
Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies. I’m kinda of a cookie fiend. I can never ever eat just one. I’ve tried. In fact I keep trying just to prove myself wrong. I’m winning on this bet even though I’m losing. Know what I mean? I prefer soft chewy cookies. I’m not really a crispy cookie kinda girl. Not that I would turn that one down mind you, I’d just have to dunk it in coffee or what not. I’m resourceful like that. These are melt in your melt good cookies that remind me of gingerbread just better.
Tis the season for baking cookies. Amiright? If you have a cookie swap to go to, or friends to gift edible goodies (your children’s teachers, the mailman, neighbors – the list is long), you’re more than likely looking at cookie recipes. Instead of having to search and bookmark multiple ones, I’ve put together a dozen plus cookie recipes all in one convenient location to make it easy on you. Now all you need to do is choose which one. Can’t help you on that one, I like them all.
Momma’s Sugar Cookies. I’ve had this post in draft form for 6 years. It just never seemed right to share because I didn’t think I could do the writing or the photography justice to convey how special this is for me. Let me say, I still don’t think I’ve done the photography justice, not really possible, it was taken with shaky hands, I just needed to do this for me. It’s taken me an entire week to cook and shoot because, as the title implies, this is my Momma’s recipe. I’m still missing her beyond belief. This is my first Christmas without her. It’s been a year of firsts without her. They’ve all stung.
I finally understand what it means when people say to remember those hurting and/or alone during the holidays. Growing up, I was aware of this, because my Mom was a natural mother hen. She would always invite people over (mostly the stray Air Force personnel) that didn’t have family, either at all, or close by and they couldn’t get home for the holidays. It was something we just got used to. Having extra people at the house. There was always room at her table. Always. I was aware, but didn’t fully understand what it meant to feel that way until now. I used to love Christmas. This year it’s just,well, different. I’m trying to find joy in the little things, and making these cookies was one of them.
Rocky Road Cookies. This is the only kind of rocky road I like ; ) The one that is rocky because of chocolate, nuts and marshmallows. Now I know some people think the nuts are optional, but you can’t have rocky road without nuts. You just can’t. If you opt to leave them out you’ve just got a fluffy chocolate road. Nothing wrong with that, it’s just not a rocky road. Details. They’re big to me. Also big to me are COOKIES. And ’tis the season for cookies.
Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Cake. No matter what is going on, I think we can all agree on cake. Especially when it’s chocolate cake with pecans and drizzled with WHISKEY CARAMEL SAUCE. It’s a show stopper for sure. It’s big, bold, and beautiful (is that a soap opera? I don’t watch a lot of tv anymore but that sounds familiar). I’m always for cake. Always. This one though, you won’t be needing a giant wedge. A little sliver of slice will suffice. It’s deeply decadent. It also let’s me feel like less of a piglet and that’s always a good thing. Not that I’m opposed to a giant slice of cake, when it’s on the lighter side, because y’all, I am an eater after all.
I did a little cake thing. Ain’t she purty. I plan on making this beauty for Thanksgiving this year. For once, I’m actually planning ahead. Soley because I’m hosting dinner this year. I’m half excited, half petrified. Thanksgiving is all about family, friends and delicious food. Luckily, the food blogging community that I’m proud to a part of is all about these things as well. To celebrate the holiday, Meghan from Cake ‘n Knife and Susannah from Feast + West are hosting Blogsgiving Dinner. There are more than 20 blogs sharing recipes today!
The idea is based on an old-fashioned potluck dinner party. Each blogger is bringing one or more dishes to the party (I called cake) so be sure to stop by each one and get some ideas for your own Thanksgiving meal. We’ll be posting to social media with the hashtag #blogsgivingdinner, but you can see the entire menu at the bottom of my post in our recipe roundup.
Doughnuts are my jam. As good as Krispy Kreme doughnuts are (and yes I rack up my fair share of reward points – I just admitted doughnuts are my jam so it should not be a shocker) there’s something special about homemade doughnuts. Working with dough, it’s therapeutic to me. I will never not be amazed with dough. Is it hard? No. Time consuming? Yes. Making doughnuts from scratch takes time. That glorious dough needs time to work it glutenous magic. This is a great recipe to tackle on the weekends when you have a little more time on your hands. Or you could make the dough the night before (which I actually prefer doing) and then just fry them the following morning once they’ve had a chance to rise again. As a non morning person this is a good thing for me.
Tis the season to break out the fat pants, or maybe just work harder on the treadmill. I still haven’t decided. Okay, okay I should just go with balance, I mean that would be the responsible thing to do, right? Adulting isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be but alas, I am an adult. Or so I tell myself. So I’ll make the fudge, eat the fudge and then workout. Eat more fudge, because, hello sweet teeth.
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Buzz + Bloom Honey. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
I’ll let you in on a little secret, when I’m hosting people for dinner I’m not big on wanting to make dessert. After I’ve made all the plans for the meal itself I’m kinda spent. BUT, I have a wicked sweet tooth and do want to finish it off with something sweet and EASY. What is that you ask? Panna Cotta. It’s my go to dessert for many reasons. First, it’s creamy and dreamy. Second and probably most important it literally takes 10 minutes of active prep time. That’s it.
10 minutes y’all. It also can be made the night before, which is a life saver when you’re the hostess with the mostess. It’s just a winner winner to go with your chicken dinner.
It’s a simple combination of a few ingredients that you probably already have in your fridge/pantry. Nothing fancy here. The best part, I like to finish it with fresh seasonal fruits and a generous drizzle of HONEY.
Where my lemon lovers at? I am a serious lemon-a-holic. It’s pretty much guaranteed if lemon is involved I’m in. I love everything about them, from their bright over the top way too peppy color (wish I could pull yellow off but yeah that’s a giant heck to the no), to the way they smell so refreshing. Yes, I even buy all the lemon cleaning products too (are you sensing a theme here?) to their taste. Lemons tick all my boxes.
Y’all know I’m a bourbon girl. Have been since college and we’re not going to talk about how LONG ago that way. I was NEVER (meaning still to this day) able to drink beer. I just can’t. So while I had my nose in the books in college I met Jack and Jim and so my love affair with the amber liquid began. Our story is a long and loving one and they’ve since introduced me to more of their friends: Mark, Colonel Taylor, and a plethora of others. I’m a social butterfly what can I say.
Don’t let the word CURD hold you back from this. I know, it’s a horrible word. I mean really, what were those in charge of naming all the things thinking when they said yes let’s call this CURD, insert the rolling eyes emoji here. It just sounds BAD and we know what it rhymes with. I know, but push that to the back of your mind and focus on LEMON instead and ICE CREAM. Better right?
Just in time for the dog days of summer, you can have your cake and eat lick it too. Yep. Your tongue and taste buds will be super confused as to why something so cold and creamy tastes like cake but your tummy will be giddy with excitement. At least that was my experience. Giddy is a good thing in my book. Unless it’s a gaggle of teenage girls, then it might be little much to handle at one time.
Y’all know how many sweet teeth I have. I’m positive that a few of them came about because of my over the top love of ice cream. I love it year round. Matter of fact, I always have the bowl to my ice cream maker in the freezer ready to go when I am. Which is often. I’ve whipped up I don’t know how many batches of this bourbon riffic beauty right here. It might be one of my favorites. I realize I say that about a lot of ice creams (can’t help myself I love the cream of ice) but this one is pretty special.
I’m kind of an ice cream nut. Like I will wear out my ice cream maker come spring and summer nut. The bowl stays in the freezer to be ready when I am. In fact, it would probably be a good idea for me to look into getting a second bowl. That’s how much I use it (you can find links for the products I use at the bottom of the post under the recipe). This ice cream is a little different from my normal recipe because it’s dairy free. Wha? Yep, it’s made using Lactaid milk. So all of y’all that have dairy allergies, intolerance or are just avoiding dairy (that one I just can’t wrap my head around but m’kay) this one is for you. It’s also gluten free and vegetarian. We’re ticking all kinds of boxes today!
This is going to be an incredibly difficult post for me to write. I’ve gone back and forth and finally decided that sharing this is something I need to do for me. I’ve poured myself a whiskey and I’m just going to write like I was pulling off a band-aid and hope it makes some sort of coherent sense. I’m also hoping that these photos are in focus because it’s hard to tell when your eyes are puffy and red. If you’re just wanting an incredibly delicious peach cobbler recipe then please go ahead and scroll down to the bottom now for the recipe. You won’t be disappointed. I’m incredibly biased, but it’s ridiculously delicious. Anyone, whose ever tried it has agreed with me. It’s by far the best peach cobbler I’ve ever had in my life and I’m from the South so that’s saying something.