Monday, April 7, 2014

Eggs Olé for a Rainy Day!

It's another rainy spring day, but I guess that is what April is all about!  The trees are finally beginning to sprout baby leaves, our tulip and lilies sprouts are really growing, and since Mr. Cozy just reseeded the grass yesterday, we're thankful for these showers!  

Speaking of the (handsome) devil, he's off today and we slept in.  It felt so good!  He was sick last week and is feeling much better thanks to God answering our prayers.  The rain made it Just right for a lazy morning.

I decided to make a hot, savory breakfast consisting of a new recipe.  We already had banana muffins I made a couple days ago, so I settled on a delicious new egg recipe I found in my Gooseberry Patch cookbook, called Eggs Ole!  Cute name, isn't it?!

It turned out to be a wonderful choice!  This Southwestern flavored dish consists of mildly spicy green chiles, cheese, and eggs.  Pretty simple which makes it easy to add to, so I decided to add Canadian bacon.  I think chopped red bell peppers or tomatoes would be pretty and tasty, too.

It's really fast to put together!  Just layer your ingredients and forget about it in the oven for half an hour.  In the meantime, you can clean up and wash some fruit to eat along side. I also chose to spice up some round tator tots I baked off for little hash browns.  We ate all of this with strawberries and a muffin!  

The eggs ole were cheesy, spicy, and cooked up just right.  It was delicious!!  A dish I'll for sure make again!  If you like a western omelet, you'll LOVE this.

Eggs ole makes a delicious meal any morning with fresh coffee and some Oj with the family!

Eggs Ole!

12 eggs

3 small cans diced green chiles

16 oz. pkg. sliced cheese
Monterey Jack, provolone or Colby Jack (Shredded would be fine too. Probably about 2 cups)

2 c. Sour cream (I used light)

Salt & Pepper, to taste


(I also added about package of sliced Canadian bacon I chopped and cooked in the skillet before adding.)

Spoon chiles into a greased 9x13 dish; top with cheese and chopped Canadian bacon. Set aside.  Beat eggs and sour cream with salt and pepper to taste; pour over cheese.  Sprinkle paprika and more pepper if you want.  Bake at 375 for 30-40 minutes.  Serves 10-12

(I halved this recipe and baked in a 8x8in. pan for about 32 minutes.  Serves 4-6)

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

My "Family" Blog

God is so good!  He has given us two children who have turned our world upside-down while filling our cups with laughter, silliness, joy, innocence, dancing, singing, stories, imagination, crumbs, and --yes-- chaos! 

But He has also used them to inspire change within us resulting in more patience, humility, discipline, maturity, conviction, compassion, integrity, trust, and beyond all of that LOVE in our own lives.

Being a parent has convicted me to step up to the plate (or cup) that God has filled brimming full in my life, as I strive be the person I want my children to become .....

If you want to read the rest of how God has been working on since I've become a mommy, or if you're more interested in my family life or walk with God, I would love for you to welcome you to my other blog!  We started it about a year ago when we were finishing our homestudy in the adoption process.  If you wonder why my recipe posts may be thin over here, it's probably because I'm over there writing about my family!  

Bringing Home Baby C is the name and the link is in my profile!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Happy Birthday! M&M Cookie Bars

I can't believe tomorrow we'll be celebrating our son's 4th birthday!  

Wow, is time going too fast!  Today he went to mommy's day out/preschool like he does twice a week, and I wanted to take a fun treat for his class to celebrate his birthday!

Here they are at Kylie's party.  She just turned 3!

Sometimes it just hits me.  I can't believe I'm baking treats for our children. What a long time coming, thank you Jesus!  They truly and honestly are two of the most precious little children I know!  

Our son is funny, entertaining, compassionate, he doesn't miss a beat, and he's a handsome little devil!!  

He loves us so much he really does treat his sister so sweet!-- most of the time! ;)

I am so proud that he's our son!!!

Back to our "sweet talk".  

I've always loved chewy m&m cookies from childhood!  I recently found a delicious recipe that I love making and I shared with you last fall.  So I thought I should use those fun primary colored, chocolate  candies in his birthday treats, too! I found this incredibly delicious m&m cookie bar recipe, and now I'm so hooked on these yummy bars!  Just look at how colorful and fun they are.  They're also really chewy, and bars are much faster to bake than a batch of cookies.  

I am so happy that I got to send my precious son to school with these yummy cookie bars to share with his sweet friends!  He was so excited and proud that I made them, and that makes me one happy mommy!!

M&Ms Cookie Bars

2 1/8 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
12 Tbsp. butter ( 1 1/2 sticks), melted and cooled slightly
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. white sugar
1 egg
1 egg yolk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 12 oz. bag M&Ms, divided

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Adjust the oven rack to lower-middle position.  Grease a 9x13 pan set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt and baking soda.  Set aside.

In a large bowl. ( I used my stand mixer here.). Whisk together sugars, melted butter until well combined.  Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla. And mix well.  Using a spatula or turning your mixer to low, add the dry ingredients slowly until combined. Do not over mix.  Gently stir in 1 c. M&Ms  and pour batter into prepared pan.  Smooth the top with a spatula and sprinkle remaining M&Ms over the top, pressing them in slightly.

Bake 25-30 minutes, until bars are a very light golden brown, slight firm to touch and beginning to pull away from sides of pan.  I would rather take them our too soon than not to have a chewy bar!  Cool completely before cutting.

Note: my brown sugar was too hard to use much of (fail!).  What I had to do this time was use 1/4 c. Brown sugar and 1 1/4 c white sugar and they still turned out chewy and delicious.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The Barefoot Contessa's Decadent Brownie Pie

Why does chocolate have to be so, SO, good!!??

My husband is the master of all brownies.  His dessert speciality has always been an over-the-top, indulgent, chocolate upon chocolate, kind of brownie!  In high school he would bring to any party or movie night "his brownies". They usually started with Ghiradelli brownie mix, and he would add chocolate syrup and chocolate chips to the batter!! (So moist and gooey.). If that wasn't enough richness already, he would make a homemade fudge icing recipe that he poured over the top!  The icing set up like fudge, and his decadent brownies would be ready to be devoured!

Then, if we wanted to really throw all care to the wind ( I mean why stop there?) we would top it with ice cream for a brownie sundae.

Those were some of the best brownies ever!!!

Note, this was in high school before we knew about any reasonable portion control, haha!  Not that I don't indulge now because I do (probably too much at times), but now I try to temper my dessert nights with healthier choices throughout my day.  

one thing hasn't changed over the years...  my Love still makes some amazing brownies!!

Last week, I was feeling pretty sick with a cold, and he decided to make supper and dessert!!  Yes!  This man who works hard all day at work came home to help me out with supper.  

I am eternally grateful!!!

He found the recipe to Ina Garten's --The Barefoot Contessa-- brownie tart or pie, and he whipped it together.  This brownie is b-e-a-utiful!  It looks like it came from a bakery.  

And it tasted amazing!!!

Gooey and rich.  Speckled with walnuts for crunch.  Glossed with melted chocolate.  Chocolate perfection for a decadent treat!  A small slice is all that's needed, since it's so rich.  It doesn't have cocoa powder, instead chocolate chips, and there is little flour.  All of that makes it extra gooey, almost creamy in the center.  

So with Valentines Day coming up, I thought I would share with you our delicious discovery if perhaps you're looking for that chocolate dessert that would be right to end your Valentines Day with!  I'm sure your loved ones would appreciate the time you took to make something like this!  

know that we certainly did!!! :)

The Barefoot Contessa's Brownie Pie
Serves 8-10

6 Tbsp. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
3 1/4 c. (20 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips
3 extra large eggs
1 c. Sugar
1 Tbsp. Instant coffee granules
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/2 c. All-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt, kosher salt if you have it
1 c. Walnuts, chopped
2-3 Tbsp. Heavy cream

Grease and flour a 9 inch tart pan with removable sides.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Melt butter in a bowl over simmering water.  (A double boiler)  Add 2 cups of chocolate chips, remove from heat, and stir with a whisk briskly until the chocolate is melted and glossy.  Set aside to cool.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, use a paddle attachment, beat the eggs, sugar, coffee, and vanilla on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Stir in the cooled melted chocolate.  In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, 1 cup of chocolate chips, and walnuts.  Fold in the mixture until just combined.  Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes, until the center is puffed (the top may crack).  The inside will still be very soft.  Cool a little bit before eating if you want it soft and gooey, and cool it all the way if you want a prettier slice.  It needs to be mostly cooled before removing tart pan sides.

Melt the remaining 1/4 c. Chocolate chips with cream and drizzle the ganache over the tart.  Beautiful!
Ready to devour!

* Note:  Please be sure to add the coffee granules.  It adds richness and make the chocolate more chocolate-y tasting!!  Honest;)

Sunday, February 2, 2014

I Need .....

He is the answer to all our needs, and the only One that will fulfill us truly.  Have a blessed day in Lord, my sweet friends! 

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Quick Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies

Happy Sunday!  I hope you're all having a blessed morning and a wonderful time at church or home with your family today.  I can't wait to worship with my whole family since Mr. Cozy is off today!

My peanut butter kiss cookies hit the spot for a quick and delicious treat, that would be just right for a snowy Sunday afternoon or to nibble watching Downton!  These cookies are ones I grew up on, but I slightly enhanced the awesome "3 ingredient peanut butter cookie" that Mom and I usually make.

The original "3 ingredient cookie" calls for 1 c. Sugar, 1 c. Peanut butter, and 1 Egg.  So simple!  In these I added brown sugar to keep them soft, a splash of vanilla, and a little flour, which we usually throw into the 3 ingredient cookie anyways for a smoother texture.

These peanut butter kiss cookies are chewy, rich, and taste like a million bucks!  They're one of those treats I hope our children will remember growing up with, too!

Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies

1c. Peanut butter
1/2 c. White sugar
1/2 c. Brown sugar
1 Egg
1 tsp. Vanilla extract
1 heaping Tbsp. Flour (Mom uses self rising, I use all-purpose.  Doesn't matter here.)
Aprox. 18 unwrapped chocolate kids candies (Hershey's)

Preheat oven to 350.
Lightly beat the egg in a small bowl.  Mix together peanut butter with sugars and add egg and vanilla to blend well.  Add the flour and stir to incorporate.

Roll into 1 1/2 in. balls.  Place on a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake for 9-11 minutes.  As soon as you take them out, have the chocolate kisses ready to press in the middle of each.  Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before digging in! 
Makes about 1 1/2 dozen 

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

A Frosty Winter's Morning Glory Muffins

The temperatures have been brutal outside despite clear blue skies that look warm as early spring.  I don't mind the extreme cold for just a couple of days, since I've been home with groceries stocked and a fireplace to stay as toasty as possible!  In fact, I am one to believe winter should be cold, despite popular opinion. :)  It helps balance our smoldering summers.

We've all woken up to chillier than usual bedrooms despite turning up the heat.  (I mean, what can you do when the lows are below 0, ha?!). So our sweet babies have had the bright idea to completely bundle--or bungle as the little miss says-- in our warmest, softest cable knit sweater throws!

I think they have the right idea to stay toasty warm!!! :)

The morning Mr. Cozy was off, Monday, I made a batch of these wonderful Morning Glory muffins!  They're easy since the base is actually a box mix.  They're chock full of things like pineapple, dried cranberries, toasted pecans, apples and even carrots.  The addition of cinnamon and the wonderful streusel makes them smell divine when baking!  I added a simple glaze to finish these irresistibly cozy muffins off.  A cross between carrot or hummingbird cake and spice bread... This is a delicious recipe!!

When frost covers your window panes as the sun comes up, what better than to warm up by the fire or in your favorite blanket and sip on fresh coffee with a homemade morning glory muffin!  

Morning Glory Muffins
Adapted from Southern Living 

1/4 c. Milk
1/4 c. Canola oil
2 large Eggs
1 (15.2 oz) pkg. Cinnamon streusel muffin mix
1/2 tsp. ground Cinnamon
1 8 oz. can crushed Pineapple, in juice
3/4 c. Grated peeled apple (calls for Granny Smith but I used Gala)
3/4 c. Shredded carrots (not pre-shredded) I recommend grated yourself
3/4 c. Toasted pecans, chopped
1/2 c. Raisins or dried cranberries
Baking spray 

For the Glaze* 
1 c. Powdered sugar
1-2 Tbsp. Milk or Orange juice
* the glaze is my go-to glaze "recipe".  Sometimes I also add a splash of vanilla.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Whisk together first 3 ingredients until blended.

Remove and set aside streusel pkg. from the box.  In a large bowl, mix together the muffin mix and ground cinnamon.  Make a well in the center, and add the egg mixture, pineapple and next 4 ingredients, stirring just until moistened and no more.

Place baking cups in muffin pan and spray with cooking spray.  Spoon batter evely until 2/3 full.  Sprinkle the streusel packet evenly over the muffins.

Bake for 18-23 minutes on the top rack.  I didn't have mine high enough and the bottoms almost got too dark.

Stir together glaze ingredients and once muffins have cooled 10 minutes, spoon the glaze over the top for it to sink in a bit and coat the tops, too! 
Makes 1 1/2 dozen.