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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Fall Crisp Apple Pie

Two of my families favorite pies!

One unbaked 9” pie crust 
8-10 apples 
1 cup sugar 
¼ tsp ground cloves 
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. lemon juice
3/4 cup flour
1/8 tsp. salt
6 tbsp.  butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Peel, core, and slice apples into a bowl.  Add ½ cup sugar, spices, and lemon juice.  Mix lightly and pour into a 9” pie crust.  Blend the remaining sugar, flour, salt, and butter to a crumbly consistency.  Sprinkle over apple mixture.  Bake for 45 minutes, or till apples are tender and crust is browned.

 Pie Crust (Makes 4 single pie crusts)

 Whisk together: 
4 cups flour
1 tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. salt

Cut 1 ¾ cup shortening into flour mixture. 

Mix together with a fork:
1 T vinegar
1 large egg 
½ cup water

Add egg mixture to flour/shortening mixture.   Wrap in plastic wrap and put in refrigerator until needed.  Freeze unused dough.

1 cup sugar 
1/2 cup cornstarch
3 egg yolks, beaten
One 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
2/3 cup lemon juice, divided
Dash of salt
3 tbsp. butter
 One 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1½ cups cold water 
One 4 oz. instant lemon pudding mix                                                       
Whipping Cream                                                         
Lemon slices to garnish
One 9 deep dish pie shell, baked                                                   

In a small saucepan, combine sugar and cornstarch.  Gradually stir in water, mixing until smooth.  Cook and stir until thick and clear.  Quickly stir in egg yolks.  Bring to a boil and boil for 1 minute stirring constantly.  Remove from the heat and stir in 1/3 cup lemon juice, salt and butter.  Cool for several hours.  In a mixing bowl, blend condensed milk and cream cheese until smooth.  Stir in pudding mix and 1/3 cup lemon juice.  Fold into chilled lemon filling.  Place filling in pie  shell.  Refrigerate and garnish with whipped cream and lemon slices.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Turkey Peanut Butter Ball

From Megan's Kitchen

The first time I made this ball I pictured it as a turkey...who does that with food? Not an elaborate feathered friend, just quick and easy dessert parading as a table decoration.
Of course if you are really wanting to be creative, you can always do more.
Apples stuck in as wings, or pretzel legs, but this is about all the creativity I was feeling last week so this is what you get.

Peanut Butter Ball:

1 cup powdered sugar
3/4 cup peanut butter
8 oz. cream cheese (softened)
3 tbsp. brown sugar
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter chips

Beat together powdered sugar, peanut butter, cream cheese and brown sugar. Cut a piece of plastic wrap and pour the ingredients in the middle of it, forming it into a ball shape. I use a cereal bowl to help. Put it in the freezer for an hour and a half to firm up (I put the bowl in the freezer). When it can hold it's shape well enough but is still slightly sticky, pull it out and roll it in the chocolate and peanut butter chips. Return to freezer for another half an hour and then it is ready to decorate. I stuck apple slices in as tail feathers because that is by far the best food to eat this peanut butter ball with. A nutter butter quickly became the head and then I used chocolate chips and a candy corn to do the eyes and nose. The waddle is a slice of an air head but you could also pipe it on with red icing. You can freeze this, but I wouldn't decorate it until you are ready to serve it since apples brown quickly. Let it defrost for 20-30 minutes and you will be ready to go. Tastes best served with apples, graham crackers and pretzels.

Homemade Party Favors "Pumpkin Cookies"

I wanted something fun to give my friends this Thanksgiving Season and who doesn't like pumpkin cookies? I designed a cute casing for the cookies and
voila: it's a perfect little treat to let friends and family know you're thinking about them. 
The packet comes with instructions, patterns, recipes and gift tag to make the gift bag. 
Fill it with homemade pumpkin cookies and deliver to make someone's day. 
This idea can also be used as a party favor. Download this pumpkin cookie box packet
HERE at Parties and Patterns, print and party.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Homemade Party Favors "Turkey"

This little guy was easy to make and  both kids and adults love him.  
He was gobbled up faster then you can say Count Your Blessings!  This "Turkey" packet includes instructions and patterns and can be downloaded for free
Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Taco Salad

From Megan's Kitchen

Let's face it...we are salad people. Many nights a week we are eating some variation of salad and so I am always trying to think of new ideas to mix it up. This salad is our absolute favorite lately. It's just a taco salad, but it is so yummy. Here's how we do it at my house:
Romaine lettuce
Jalapeno ranch dressing - I had some fat free ranch in my fridge, which I personally think is disgusting, so I threw it in the blender with some jalapenos and it was amazing. But two weeks later we can hardly eat it it's so hot. :) You can just buy jalapeno ranch dressing though to make it easier on you.
Ground Turkey - I season it with taco seasoning. Easy enough.
Black Beans -  I throw these in the pan that I cook the meat in once the meat is done just to heat them up.
Corn  - Same as the beans - I brown them in that same pan with a little butter and salt and pepper. You could do them with the beans, but due to my bean aversion, I refuse.
Tortilla Strips - The best part. I take a couple of corn tortillas and cut them into strips. Then I toss them in olive oil and season them with either all seasoning salt or taco seasoning depending on my mood. Then I crispify them in the same pan I've been using. That's right. I crispify them. So tasty.

My husband's salad:

 My beanless salad...

Table Runner Patterns "Sunflower"

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Haunted Pumpkin Patch

Megan Jesclard

I had been talking to my cousin right before Halloween and saying how disappointed I was that I hadn't gotten into the holiday like I usually to remedy that we decided to have a Halloween themed dinner. This is my haunted pumpkin patch: I made the pumpkins out of cake balls and the mummy's are cake pops. The hay stacks are just peanut butter rice krispy treats.

This festive treat can be made for a party or for a fun after school snack. It is made out of cake balls, cake pops, and peanut butter rice krispie treats (regular rice krispie treats would be fine too!). 

Cake Balls and Pops:
1 box chocolate cake mix (or cake mix of your choice)
1 can cream cheese frosting
White, orange and green  candy melt
Sucker sticks
Green ball sprinkles (for mummy eyes)
Green tic tacs (for pumpkin stems)
Make cake according to package directions.  Let cake cool. Mash the cake with ¾ can of frosting. Roll the dough into balls and refrigerate for a couple of hours (you can freeze them but never for more than 15 minutes). Melt the candy melt according to package directions.  
For the Pops (Mummies):
Dip the end of each stick in the candy melt and stick half way through cake pop ball. Return pops to fridge or freezer and only pull out a few at a time as you dip them. Dip cake ball in melted candy melt making sure that it is completely covered. Shake off excess candy melt and put cake pops back in fridge as you dip them. After you have dipped all the pops, decorate them.  Put melted candy melt in a squeeze bottle (found in your local grocery store) to make the mummy wrappings and attach the eyes.
For the Balls (Pumpkins):
Drop a ball into a bowl or cup of candy melt making sure that it is completely covered. Scoop it out with a spoon and tap the spoon on the edge of the dish to get rid of excess candy melt. Drop ball onto wax paper and immediately stick in the tic tac stem before the candy melt hardens.
For the Rice Krispie Treats (Hay Stacks):
2 cups sugar
2 cups light corn syrup
2 cups peanut butter
12 cups rice krispies
In a sauce pan over medium heat, combine the sugar and corn syrup and bring to a rolling boil. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter. Mix in the rice krispies until evenly coated. Press into a buttered 9x13 pan. This is double a normal recipe and makes a lot of hay stacks! If you don't want so many, do a single recipe and press it into an 8x8 pan so that your haystacks are still thick. they will not hold the mummy cake pops unless they are thick and sturdy.
Arrange your haystacks on a platter and scatter with pumpkins. Stick the mummies in last making sure to push them down far enough so they don't fall over. Enjoy!!

 I also contributed these little mummy wraps...they were cooler but I had thrown the worms on right before we left the house and the mummy's were still a little warm, so by the time we got there the mummy's were covered in puddles of goo...lovely. One is filled with PB&J and the other is filled with cheese and pepperoni. I have a bread braid addiction lately. Turns out you can fill them with pretty much anything and they are delicious!(The recipe can be found under main dishes and is called bread braids.)

 Frieda made some awesome meatloaf mummy's  I don't know how I didn't get more pictures of everything but the spread was impressive...and we had a great time.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Thanksgiving Poem "Turkeys"

I ruffle my feathers, I gobble, I peck,
I trot around the ground and deck.
But I am so fat I cannot fly,
So serve me with your pumpkin pie!
                                                                                                  Megan Jesclard

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Dad's Favorite Pumpkin Pie

Dad’s Favorite Pumpkin Pie
One unbaked 9” pie crust 
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp cloves 

¼ tsp nutmeg
 ¼ tsp ginger
½ tsp salt 
One 15 oz. can pumpkin (packed pumpkin)
1 cup evaporated milk

Prepare pie crust.  Combine eggs, sugar, salt, and spices and beat well.  Blend in pumpkin,  Add milk and beat well.  Bake 450 degrees for 20 minutes, reduce heat and bake at 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes.  (Do not substitute the canned milk.)  I like to put tin foil around the edges of the pie crust so they don’t burn.

Pie Crust (Makes 4 single pie crusts)

 Whisk together:
4 cups flour
1 tbsp. sugar
 2 tsp salt. 
With a pastry cutter, cut 1 ¾ cup shortening into flour mixture. 

Mix together with a fork:

1 tbsp. vinegar
1 large egg
½ cup water

Add egg mixture to flour/shortening mixture

 Roll dough out into pie crust.  Freeze unused dough.