Tag Archive | cooking baking and making book

White Russian Hot Chocolate

As seen on WKTV NEWSChannel 2

White Russian Hot Chocolate

White Russian Hot Chocolate

When the landscape glistens with new-fallen snow, it’s time to gather with family and friends and have a cup of cheer.

The perfect potion on a cold winter’s day, this seasonal sipper will warm everyone’s spirits. Of course you can leave out the alcohol and just enjoy the creamy hot chocolate instead, if desired.

Whichever way you prefer, here’s wishing you a holly, jolly Christmas—this year. Cheers!

For more tasty tidbits, cozy concoctions, and easy diy ideas, pick up a copy of my latest book, Cooking, Baking, and Making: 100 Recipes and DIY Ideas for All Seasons and Reasons.

Cooking, Baking, and Making: 100 Recipes and DIY Ideas for All Seasons and Reasons

Cooking, Baking, and Making: 100 Recipes and DIY Ideas for All Seasons and Reasons

WHITE RUSSIAN HOT CHOCOLATE

2 cups half-and-half or fat-free half-and-half
1 1/4 cups milk
1 (4-serving size) package cook-and-serve chocolate pudding and pie filling mix
1/2 cup coffee liqueur, such as Kahlua
1/4 cup vodka
Fresh, lightly whipped cream
Chocolate shavings (optional)

In a large microwave-safe bowl, whisk together half-and-half, milk, and pudding mix. Microwave on HIGH until hot and slightly thickened, 7 to 9 minutes; whisk in coffee liqueur and vodka until well blended. Ladle into mugs; top with lightly whipped cream. Garnish with chocolate shavings, if desired. Makes 6 servings.

Book Release and Pumpkin Doughnut Muffins

Pumpkin Doughnut Muffins

Pumpkin Doughnut Muffins

If you enjoy the taste of pumpkin and cinnamon/sugar doughnuts, then you’ll love this easy to make recipe.

Simply combine pumpkin with a few pantry staples, bake in muffin cups, and then dip the tops in melted butter and cinnamon-sugar.

Before you know it, a batch of family-pleasing muffins will be on the table. And if you’d like to sample a taste of these muffins, stop by my book signing tomorrow, November 18th from 1:00 to 3:00 at Barnes & Noble Book Sellers, Consumer Square, 4811 Commercial Drive, New Hartford, NY 13413. Hope to see you there! 🙂

Pumpkin Doughnut Muffins

Nonstick cooking spray
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 teaspoons cinnamon, divided
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, softened
1 egg
3/4 cup 100% pure pumpkin
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat muffin cups with nonstick cooking spray. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, allspice, and ginger. . In a large bowl, combine brown sugar and softened butter. Beat with an electric mixer until well blended. Add egg and pumpkin; beat until combined. Add flour mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition. Divide batter among prepared muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean, 15 to 18 minutes. Cool in pan 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine sugar and the remaining 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Dip warm muffin tops in melted butter, then in cinnamon-sugar mixture. Makes 12 muffins.

Apple Pear Sauce

Apple Pear Sauce

Apple Pear Sauce

Homemade applesauce is always welcome at the table, but why not put a tasty twist on tradition with the addition of pears.

This combination is good enough on its own, but by cooking them in cranberry juice cocktail along with a couple sticks of cinnamon, it’s easy to make a seasonal treat. It’s just as easy to double or triple the recipe and share with family and friends.

And if you like the idea of making simple hand-crafted items to complement your home, then pick up a copy of Cooking, Baking, and Making: 100 Recipes and DIY Ideas for All Seasons and Reasons and learn how to make easy No-Sew Placemats like these that will be the perfect addition to your fall table.

No-Sew Placemats

No-Sew Placemats

Apple Pear Sauce

3 medium cooking apples, peeled, cored, and coarsely chopped
2 medium pears, peeled, cored, and coarsely chopped
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup cranberry juice cocktail
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 (3- to 3 1/2-inches each) cinnamon sticks

In a medium saucepan, combine apples, pears, sugar, cranberry juice cocktail, water, lemon juice, and cinnamon sticks. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, partially covered, until apples and pears are tender, 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Remove cinnamon sticks. Mash with a potato masher to desired texture. Serve warm or chilled. Makes about 2 cups.

Fresh Tomato Salsa

Fresh Tomato Salsa

Fresh Tomato Salsa

Savoring red ripe tomatoes is one of the simple pleasures of summer. And when they’re combined with a mixture of other fresh-from-the-garden ingredients and turned into salsa, they’re even better.

Perfect for pairing with tortilla chips, topping off burgers, or embellishing any hot-off-the-grill meat, this refreshing salsa is a delicious way to make use of a bountiful garden.

FRESH TOMATO SALSA

5 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1 small green bell pepper, chopped
2 medium jalapeño chiles, seeded and minced
1/4 cup minced white onion
2 medium scallions, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon pepper

In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Cover, and refrigerate at least 1 hour. Makes about 3 cups salsa.

If you enjoy easy seasonal recipes like Fresh Tomato Salsa then pre-order a copy of Cooking, Baking, and Making: 100 Recipes and DIY Ideas for All Seasons and Reasons and get this refreshing summer recipe for Grilled Chicken with Mango Salsa! Summer never tasted so good.

Grilled Chicken with Mango Salsa

Grilled Chicken with Mango Salsa

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

If you would like to whip up a sweet treat for your Valentine but are short on time, then this quick to prepare recipe is for you.

By simply microwaving chocolate chips, stirring in a touch of shortening and then dipping strawberries into the melted goodness, a decadent dessert with a touch of elegance is ready to serve.

Make it extra special by pouring a couple glasses of champagne to share with your beloved. Classy flutes like these Oneida Compose Flutes are perfect for romantic occasions and make it easy to celebrate any time of the year.

So when it comes to wishing your sweetheart a Happy Valentine’s Day, it’s as simple as a glass of champagne and handmade chocolate covered strawberries. Cheers!

CHOCOLATE COVERED STRAWBERRIES

16 large strawberries
1 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
1 teaspoon vegetable shortening
Line a baking sheet with waxed paper. Rinse strawberries; pat dry. Place chocolate morsels in a microwave-safe glass measuring cup; microwave until melted. Stir in shortening. Dip strawberries in melted chocolate; place on prepared baking sheet. Let stand until set, 10 to 15 minutes. Makes 4 servings.

Thanks to Oneida for providing drinkware and serveware

Loaded Chili

Loaded Chili

Loaded Chili

Loaded Chili 2

Loaded Chili

Looking to serve a crowd and score big points at the same time on Super Bowl Sunday? Then make a pot of hearty chili for the big game and you’ll be a surefire winner.

Just right for any get-together, this recipe is easy to prepare and can be ready to serve in less than an hour. Ladle chili into sturdy bowls like these Chef’s Table Soft Square from Oneida and set out dishes of assorted toppings so hungry fans can add what they like.

When it comes to tackling what to make for the Super Bowl, this recipe is sure to score a touchdown. Enjoy!

LOADED CHILI

1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 cup jarred medium tomato salsa or Fresh Tomato Salsa
1 (14.5-ounce) can stewed tomatoes, undrained
1 (15- to 16-ounce) can dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15- to 16-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (4-ounce) can fire roasted diced green chiles
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
Regular or light sour cream
Regular or reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
Sliced scallions
Corn Chips
In a large saucepan, combine ground beef, onion, and garlic. Cook over medium heat until beef browns and onion is tender, 7 to 9 minutes, stirring frequently. Drain fat. Stir in salsa, undrained stewed tomatoes, kidney beans, tomato sauce, diced green chiles, chili powder, and cumin. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Top with sour cream, cheddar cheese, scallions, and corn chips. Makes 8 servings.

Thanks to Oneida for providing dinnerware