Monday, March 21, 2011

Home made Vanilla Frosting

So My son's 5th birthday party is on Saturday and I wanted to practice making cup cakes for his party. So I decided why not. I have seen this recipe in a couple of places so I decided to give it a go. Let it be known I am not in any way a frosting person. In face I scrape all my frosting off a piece of cake or cupcake and just eat the cake part but with this frosting I did not. It was great! I highly recommend it. You can add whatever kind of flavoring or extract you want as well so that makes it so handy to have.

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3 T Flour
1/2 C milk
1/2 C real butter
1/2 C granulated sugar
1 t vanilla extract, or other flavor if you wish.

Whisk together the milk and flour in a small saucepan over medium heat. Keep whisking until it starts to thicken. Keep cooking until it looks like pudding.

After it looks like pudding take it off the burner. I put mine in a bowl and stuck it in the freezer for 20 or so minutes until it was completely cool. You can also stick it in the fridge for a little while. It needs to cool completely though.

In a stand mixer & the whisk attachment, cream together butter & sugar for a few minutes it should be mixed together and fluffy. Add the milk mixture and whatever flavoring you want. You want to mix this on the highest setting you can without spraying the mixture everywhere for about 7 or 8 minutes maybe longer. It should come out smooth and fluffy. One batch should cover about 12 cupcakes so I double this recipe all the time.

You don't want to store these in the fridge when cupcakes are frosted. Store them at room temperature covered. Good luck!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Home made Chicken Nuggets

I made these tonight and they were simply amazing. It made me feel that for a moment I was back in Georgia for a hour. It was one of the best meals we have had as a family in a while. We sat our new table and just laughed and had a good time as a family. Yummy though so I hope you will try it out.

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* 1 cup all-purpose flour
* 4 teaspoons seasoned salt
* 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
* 1 teaspoon ground mustard
* 1 teaspoon paprika
* 1/2 teaspoon pepper
* 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
* 1/4 cup canola oil
I omitted the seasoned salt and used the McCormick's Gourmet Steak rub. I also used red pepper instead of paprika because our commissary here was out of paprika last time I checked. I work with limited resources here in Belgium.

1. Heat oil in large skillet while preparing the chicken.
2. In a large resealable bag, combine the first six ingredients. Flatten chicken to 1/2-in. thickness, then cut into 1-1/2-in. pieces. Add chicken, a few pieces at a time, to bag and shake to coat.
3. In a large skillet, cook chicken in oil in batches for 6-8 minutes or until meat is no longer pink.

Apple Struesel Bars

Okay so I know Summer is coming up soon but I guess maybe because of the fall like weather we are having right now in Belgium I have been craving apple and pumpkin flavors. So I decided on apple. I love everything apple. My kitchen is even done in apple haha. So I searched for something I could do with apples and Kim from lovin in the oven had a really yummy recipe. Below are my results.

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(picture does not do it justice, I am not a photographer so eh haha)



* 2 c. flour
* 1/2 c. sugar
* 1/2 tsp. baking powder
* 1/2 tsp. salt
* 1 c. real butter, softened (no substitutions!)
* 1 egg, beaten


* 1/2 c. white sugar
* 1/4 c. flour
* 1 tsp. cinnamon (I used about 3 teaspoons.. I LOVE cinnamon)
* 4 c. (about 3 medium) sliced, peeled baking apples (I used 4 Braeburn apples)


* 2 c. powdered sugar
* About 3 Tbsp. milk (whole milk is best)
* 1 tsp. almond extract (I used vanilla extract)


1. Preheat oven to 350
2. To prepare crust, mix flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or two knives until you have pea-sized crumbles. Gently mix in beaten egg.( I used a fork & it worked great)
3. Spray a 9x13 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Gently pat about 2/3 of the crumb mixture onto the bottom of the dish.
4. To prepare apple filling, combine flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Toss with apples and spread apples out on prepared crust. Sprinkle reserved crust mixture over apples evenly and bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes. When finished, allow to cool completely.
5. To prepare glaze, whisk together powdered sugar, almond extract, and enough milk to achieve desired consistency. Place glaze in a Ziploc bag and cut off a very small portion of one of the corners. Drizzle glaze over cooled pastry and allow to harden (you can place it in the freezer to hurry things along). Cut into bars and serve. ( Instead of a ziploc bag I used a whisk and drizzled it that way. It saved me the hassle of having to use the bag etc etc.)

Enjoy! My husband loved this. We put our leftovers in the fridge and had it for breakfast this morning. It was delish!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Very Moist Banana Bread

So anything with bananas or apples I love. So I am a huge fan of banana bread & will try any recipe to find the perfect banana bread. My banana bread must be moist & have walnuts. Those are deal breakers for me. So when I made this bread it was so yummy & so far this is my favorite recipe.

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1/2 c. butter
2 eggs
1 c. white sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 c. ripe mashed bananas ( I used 5 very ripe bananas.)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. sour cream
1-1/2 c. sifted flour
1/2 c. chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Mix: butter, eggs, sugar, vanilla in a bowl and mix until creamy.

Add: bananas, cinnamon and mix well.

Add: baking soda, salt, sour cream, flour, mix until all smooth.

Pour into a greased and floured loaf pan.

Bake at 350°F for 1 hour until done.

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Monday, March 7, 2011

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

So the other night my husband and I were watching House M.D. I love Gregory House so much haha! So we are all engrossed in House and then all the sudden it hits. This sudden need for chocolate right now! I know you guys know the feeling. Of course nothing will do except warm chocolate chip cookies with milk. So of course we have the cookies you buy at the store and you could always warm them up in the microwave but they just are not the same as when you make them at home and have one right out of the oven. Making them home made also gives you an excuse to eat a ton of the cookie dough which *hangs head* yes I did. Sadly I had several table spoon fulls. This is the best dough I have ever eaten! Trust me that is saying something because I have eaten alot of dough (which is why I now zumba every day lol). I hope you guys will enjoy the cookies as much as my family did. They make a really soft yet just crunchy enough cookie. Picture of course is not the best. I am not a professional photographer. Gotta enjoy my son's panda placemat though right?

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2-1/4 Cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon of salt (I omitted this)
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
3/4 cup granulate sugar (white sugar)
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)


1.Heat oven to 350
2. Stir together flour, baking soda & salt. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, & vanilla in a large bowl with a mixer until creamy. Add eggs; beat well. Gradually add flour mixture, beating well. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts if desired.
3. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto ungreased cookie sheets.
4. Bake 8 to 10 mins or until lightly browned. Cool slightly and move onto cooling racks and enjoy.

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