Sunday, November 28, 2010

Pecan Cheesecake Pie

Everyone who has ever tasted this pie LOVES it!!  I highly recommend making this for the holidays and wowing your friends and family.  It is a match made in heaven... Pecan Pie and Cheesecake.  Is there anything better?  You decide and let me know...

Pecan Cheesecake Pie

1 pastry for a 9" pie plate (Pate Brisee)
1- 8 oz. pkg. of cream cheese, softened
4 large eggs, divided
3/4 cup sugar, divided
2 tsp. vanilla, divided
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/4 cups pecan halves
1 cup light corn syrup

Roll out pastry and fit into a 9" pie plate.  Finish edge however you'd like and place the pie shell in the refridgerator.
In a bowl, beat the cream cheese until soft and creamy. 

Cream in 1/2 cup of sugar.  Add egg, 1 tsp. vanilla, and salt.  Beat on medium speed with an electric mixer. 

Remove pie shell from the refrigerator and pour cream cheese mixture into the shell.  Return the pie shell to the refrigerator.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the corn syrup, the remaining 3 eggs, 1/4 cup sugar, and 1 tsp. vanilla. 

Remove pie from the refrigerator and sprinkle evenly with the pecan halves. 

Then pour the corn syrup mixture over the pecans.  Place the pie on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees on the lowest rack for 50-55 minutes or until pie is set.  Cool on a wire rack 1 hour or until completely cool.  Serve immediately or cover and chill for up to 2 days.

Bake it Pretty Coupon

Attention Shoppers!!

Bake it Pretty Coupon

Click the button above to shoot over to the Bake it Pretty blog.  If you haven't been must! They have the cutest baking items you've ever seen!!  No I'm not getting any kick back for saying that... they don't even know me...I just wanted to share that on their blog today they will announce a coupon for the Bake It Pretty Website

I just love sharing good deals!!!

Happy Holidays & Happy Shopping,

Lee Ann

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cranberry Streusel Tart

Sorry I haven't posted anything in awhile... I've been swamped.  I accomplished cooking and baking for Thanksgiving while holding my little one that wasn't feeling well, so I didn't get any photos of the food on Thanksgiving Day. Bummer. 

I have a lot of baking going on this coming week so keep a look out for several new recipes! 

First up... Cranberry Streusel Tart!

I made this for the first time for Thanksgiving and everyone raved over it.  This recipe now has it's own little spot in my collection of keeper recipes.

Cranberry Streusel Tart
adapted from

1- 12 oz. pkg of fresh cranberries
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup walnuts, finely chopped
1/4 cup flour
1 tbsp. shortening
pie dough for a 10" tart pan- Pate Brisee

Roll out pastry and press into a 10" tart pan with a removable bottom.  Place in the refrigerator to rest while you prepare the filling.

Smash the cranberries in a large bowl with a potato masher just until about half or so of the berries are popped.  Stir in the white sugar and 1/4 cup flour.  Set aside.

In a separate bowl, stir together walnuts, brown sugar and 1/4 cup flour.  Using a pastry blender, cut the shortening into the nut mixture.  This mixture will be crumbly. 

Remove the tart shell from the refrigerator and pour cranberry mixture into the tart. 

Then top with the nut/brown sugar mixture.  Dot with very, very small pieces of shortening, maybe five pieces total.  Place tart pan on a cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until done.  After 45 minutes, check the tart.  If there are any remaining sugary looking areas you can dot with a tad more shortening and place the tart back in the oven until those areas do not look sugary anymore. 

Sunday, November 21, 2010

One Lovely Blog Award

I recently received this award from Lisa over at Sweet As Sugar Cookies.

I am so honored!!  I'm so new at this blogging thing and I never in a million years expected anyone to be interested in my food/recipes/thought much less someone think I deserve an award!  This is completely amazing!

Thank you so much Lisa for thinking of me!! 
Also, for those of you who have not been over to visit Lisa please do so... her blog is busting at the seams with fabulous recipes and I know you will enjoy it as much as I do.

Thanks again Lisa!!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Sweet Butter Cookies- Week 8 of the 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies

Week 8 of the 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies!

Sweet Butter Cookies

I found this recipe in a cookbook I recently purchased, Gooseberry Patch Christmas in the Country.  I love Gooseberry Patch books!  The recipe says these cookies are also know as Vinegar Cookies and I have to say they taste very familiar... I'm thinking they taste like a cookie recipe my mom had given me that her grandmother use to make, Tea Cakes.  I'll dig that recipe out and share it soon! 

This cookie does not disappoint.  The taste is very light and buttery.  It's crisp on the outside and slightly chewing on the inside.  I did make a few changes to this recipe just for grins... the original recipe calls for butter.  When I saw that the recipe had no eggs I thought...hey, why not make it vegan?  I also replaced the sugar with vanilla sugar and pressed them slightly before baking with vanilla sugar.  If you don't want to go vegan then just use butter...done.  I love recipes that are versatile!

Likes: The recipe is eggless, good for those with allergies or if you just run out of eggs and still want cookies, great cookie with coffee or tea, the recipe was quite simple

Dislikes: None... I'm not lying.. it's a really good cookie!  I guess some might find it simple or plain..but hey simple cookies need love too.

Printable Version

Sweet Butter Cookies (Vegan)
makes 3 dozen (I used a cookie scoop)

1 cup Earth Balance vegan buttery margarine (or use butter)
3/4 cup vanilla sugar (or use regular granulated sugar)
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. white vinegar
1 3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp. vanilla
Vanilla Sugar

Blend together the butter and sugar until creamy.  Add baking soda and vinegar; mix.  Stir in flour; add vanilla. 

The dough will look very crumbly..keep mixing it comes together. 

Using a cookie scoop, drop dough onto a lightly greased cookie sheet.  Take a drinking glass and flatten the first cookie slightly, dip the glass into vanilla sugar and touch to the cookie to make the sugar stick.  Dip again into the sugar and flatten a second cookie.  Repeat on all cookies. Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes.

Got Cookies?
Click below for more cookie recipes.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Biscuits & Pancakes!

It's time yet again to re-stock the freezer for breakfast...

Buttermilk Biscuits & Buttermilk Pancakes

What's up with the buttermilk you ask?  To be honest I had a carton in the fridge I needed to use up before it went bad.  This pancake recipe replaces eggs with applesauce which is a bonus for me as my toddler isn't very fond of fruits.

Printable Version

Buttermilk Pancakes

1/2 cup applesauce
2 cups buttermilk
4 tbsp. butter, melted
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
3 tbsp. sugar

In a large bowl, mix together the applesauce, buttermilk, melted butter, and vanilla.  Then whisk in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar.  Heat a griddle to med-high heat and spray with cooking spray.  Pour out batter 1/4 cup at a time and cook until you see bubbles around the edge of the pancake.  Flip and cook a few minutes until golden brown on both sides.  Cool on a wire rack.

* To freeze the pancakes, I allow the pancakes to cool completely, stack them up and place them in freezer bags.  If you are worried about the pancakes sticking together you could place a small square of parchment paper between each pancake or freeze in a single layer on a cookie sheet then place in a freezer bag.  My pancakes do freeze together but pop apart quite easily so I have never separated them.

Look at that flakiness, would ya!
I am extremely happy with yet another Pioneer Woman recipe..I haven't been disappointed yet.  I LoVe her cookbook!!  The flakiness of these biscuits are just amazing.  Make a batch or two for your company this holiday season and serve with your fave jam/jelly... better yet, throw a batch in the freezer like me and have warm buttermilk biscuits at the drop of a hat!

Printable Version

Buttermilk Biscuits
from Pioneer Woman

4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/3 cup shortening
1/3 cup cold butter, cut into pieces
1 1/4 cups buttermilk

In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and stir together.  Add the shortening and butter. 

With a pastry blender or fork, cut in the shortening and butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  Pour in the buttermilk and mix gently with a fork until just combined.  The biscuit dough will be sticky, not overly dry or crumbly.  Lightly flour a clean surface. 

 Turn dough out of the bowl and roll to a 1/3-3/4 inch thickness, depending on how thick you'd like your biscuits to be.  Cut rounds with a biscuit cutter and place them in a baking dish or on a cookie sheet.  Bake for 11-14 minutes or until golden brown.  (Watch them, mine were done at 10 minutes. 

What else is goin' on?

Tomorrow- It's cookie time again!!  12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies!
Next week- Thanksgiving food!!! Pies, pies and more pies!!!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

My favorite Pumpkin Pie

It's hard to believe Thanksgiving is a week away.  Thanksgiving is the official start to the holidays and they always go by way to fast for me.  If I had my way the holidays would be six months long.  I just love this time of year! 

Every year I start to bake and cook about a week before Thanksgiving.  I long to be like those who can wake up that morning and throw everything together for a crowd of people and be completely at ease when everyone walks through the door.  That is NOT me... I wish.  I have to start early and make a dozen lists of things I need to get, things I need to do...I have list of my lists it seems like.  This is the only way I feel comfortable that I haven't forgotten anything.  So today I have made my first pie for Thanksgiving.  Yes, I make them and freeze them. (don't tell Martha Stewart) The morning of Thanksgiving I just take out all my pies and set them on the counter to thaw and by lunch...viola! I have a wonderful selection of pies!  So, for the first of many pies... we have Pumpkin!  This is my favorite Pumpkin Pie recipe and the first year I will be using fresh pumpkin puree. 

Printable Version
Pumpkin Pie
makes 1- 9" very full pie

1- 8oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 cups pumpkin puree
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1 egg (I used EnerG Egg Replacer equivalent to 2 eggs)
2 egg yolks
1 cup half & half
1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
pie crust

Roll out your pie crust and place it in the pie plate.  Trim the dough to about a 1/2" overhang and make whatever decorative edge you like.  Once you have finished with the pie crust place it in the freezer while you prepare the filling.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese until soft and fluffy.  Add the pumpkin and beat well.  Add the sugar & salt, beat well.  Then add in the egg, yolks, half & half, and the melted butter.  Finally add the cinnamon, vanilla and ginger.  Mix well. 
Remove the pie crust from the freezer and pour the filling into the pie crust.  Bake for 50 minutes.

To freeze: Allow pie to cool completely and place it in a large freezer bag, then pop it in your freezer until Thanksgiving!  Enjoy!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Birthday fit for a Princess

Hello everyone... meet Bella.

I love her outfit!

Is she not the cutest thing ever?  Bella is my best friend's daughter and the closest thing I have to a niece.  My bestie has three children and amazes me everyday with her patience and how calm she stays.  I have one and I remain in a state of panic the majority of the time.   
My bestie did a fabulous job on Bella's was every princess' dream! 

I was very happy and honored to make Bella her zebra and pink birthday cake! Here are a few pics from Bella's 2nd birthday.

Bella's Vegan Birthday Cake: get the recipe here.  I did make a few changes to my basic vanilla cupcake recipe... replaced the emulsion with 2 tsp. of vanilla extract and the almond milk with vanilla soy milk.  I used Vegan Fluffy Buttercream.

The bow and pink balls are made of gum paste that was dried for 2 weeks.

The table looked beautiful!

Cake pops or Dirt balls..whatever you want to call them.
Get the recipe here at Abby Sweets.

The banner I made using my new Cricut machine!!

Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Vanilla Frosting (see recipe below)

I love this picture!
Happy Birthday Miss Bella!!
Printable Version

Strawberry Cupcakes (Vegan)
adapted from Madhuram's Eggless Cooking

1 1/3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
14 fresh or frozen strawberries, pureed
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tbsp. white distilled vinegar

*This recipe will yield 12-16 cupcakes or 1 loaf pan.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and baking soda.
In a large bowl, combine the oil, vinegar, and vanilla.  Add the strawberry puree.  Slowly add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients.  Pour batter into prepared pan(s) and bake 22 minutes for cupcakes and 40-45 minutes for a loaf pan or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Cool on a wire rack.

I frosted the cupcakes with Vegan Fluffy Vanilla Buttercream, (the same one used on the cake except tinted pink.  I have made this in a loaf pan and frosted with fresh whipped cream for a light summer was Divine.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Pecan-Chocolate Chip Cookie Brittle- Week 7 of the 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies

Week 7 of the 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies

Pecan-Chocolate Chip Cookie Brittle

We went to my parents last weekend and among many other things I skimmed through my mom's cookbook library.  As I drove the hour and a half to their house listening to Sid the Science Kid in the backseat, I daydreamed of having time to browse tons and tons of recipes and find a perfect one to share for the 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies.  Come to find out this daydream left a little bit of information out.  In my daydream I did not see my toddler having a weekend that resembled something out of The Exorcist.  Apparently, teething will cause this type of behavior.  Basically, the only thing that was missing was the spinning of the head and pea soup.  I swear each tooth that comes in is worse than the last...Okay on to the cookies.  I was unable to wrap myself in tons and tons of recipes, however I did find one special cookie recipe... Pecan-Chocolate Chip Cookie Brittle!  I've seen a lot of cookie recipes but I had never seen anything about a cookie brittle...I had to try it!  It was great!  All the glory of fresh homemade cookies with none of the fuss of individual it!  Like last week, I'll keep this one for the unexpected moments!

Likes: very quick, no measuring out each cookies, no waiting it the kitchen for several batches to bake, no waiting for butter to soften

Dislikes: I just can't seem to find any...  Oh yum yum yummy...

Pecan-Chocolate Chip Cookie Brittle
Makes 1-2 dozen cookie pieces depending on the size you break them

1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup butter, melted & cooled slightly
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup semi sweet mini chocolate chips
1 cup pecan pieces, toasted
1/2 cup flaked coconut, toasted

Combine the first 4 ingredients, set aside. 

Stir together butter & next 3 ingredients in a large bowl, add flour mixture, stirring until smooth. 

 Stir in chocolate chips, pecans, and coconut. (Dough will look crumbly) Press dough evenly into a lightly greased 15x10" jelly roll pan, pressing almost to edges.
Bake at 350 degrees for 19 minutes or until lightly browned and cookie "slab" seems crisp. 

 Cool completely in pan.  Break into pieces.

*You can toast pecan pieces and coconut in the same pan at 350 degrees for 8 minutes.

What else is goin' on?
This week: crafts, cakes, cupcakes, cake pops all for my friend's daughter's birthday... look for pictures & recipes the next few days!

Next week: It's time to start preparing for Thanksgiving... pies, pies, and more pies!  I'll be sharing all the recipes with you!!

Want more cookie recipes?  Click below!