Gadget by The Blog Doctor.
Read more: http://www.blogdoctor.me/2009/01/random-rotating-post-gadget-with.html#ixzz1e5vH9P4O

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Peanut Butter Cookies

I mentioned in my previous post that I had gotten a new mixer and was testing it out with a few recipes. The second recipe I made was Peanut Butter Cookies. So far I am liking this mixer and after one more recipe test, I will write a post on it. 
These cookies are so good. I made them and sent the  majority off with my hubby to work, saving a little less than a dozen for us at home...I know how our self control can be. 


1 c. peanut butter
1 c. butter, softened
1 c. sugar
1 c. brown sugar
2 eggs
3 c. flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla


1. In bowl of a mixer, combine peanut butter, butter and sugars. Blend until well mixed.
2. Combine dry ingredients. Gradually add to wet ingredients, mixing after each addition.

3. Drop onto lightly greased baking sheet and bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes, checking periodically.

I love the flavor of peanut butter cookies. They are probably one of my favorite cookies, besides white chocolate macadamia nut. 

With Joy UNquenchable,

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Gluten Free-Sugar Free Blackberry Tarts

I have a few recipes to share over the next few days. Hubby bought me a new mixer and I'm testing it out to see if I like it. I tend to be a person who, once I like a brand, I stick with it. I've had my Kitchenaid mixer for over 15 years and have loved it. A few months ago hubby spotted a Bosch Universal  Mixer at Costco and told me about it. I had never heard of nor seen one before so I checked it out in the store, came home and watched some online videos and decided I'd like to give it a try. I have wanted a larger mixer and one of the selling points on this was it's capacity, and the ease of adding ingredients. The Costco price also included a slicer/shredder attachment. It also has a spot for other attachments as well. So far I've made these tarts and some peanut butter cookies, today I'll try bread. I really want to get a good feel for how it works in different scenarios with different "loads". I'll post my final thoughts later this week.
While we are not "gluten-free", at the moment my oldest is on a 6 week anti-inflammatory diet. We also have several friends who do not eat gluten and I love finding new recipes, because while I love my bread, I want to limit my intake. However, gluten-free doesn't necessarily mean "healthier" or "less calories", so one must be careful.

One thing to remember when making gluten free recipes is that you are not going to have the same textures necessarily as if you were using full all purpose flour. Sometimes you can get pretty darn close, but there's just a difference. It also depends on the flours you use. For this recipe I used only GF oat flour. It almost had more of a combination of a shortbread/cakey texture. The flavor was really good. It was delicate and had to be lifted with a spatula off the bottom tart disc. 

Ready for the recipe? I thought so. I found this recipe on Rodales Organic Life site along with several other recipes.


1 1/2 c. oat flour
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 c. coconut oil, lard or butter (I used coconut oil and chilled it a bit before adding it)
1/4 c. cold water

1. In a bowl of a mixer add flour and salt. Add your choice of "fat" and pulse or mix until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

2. Sprinkle in cold water, a little at a time, stirring with a fork or mixing in mixture till dough begins to form a single ball. 

3. If you have time, place dough in an airtight container or wrap in plastic wrap for 30 minutes, chilling the dough helps it hold together (and it is hard to hold together). 
4. I divided my dough into 4 pieces (then saved any scraps and got another 2 tart crusts). Roll dough out to appropriate size for tarts and carefully place in tart pan (molding and pressing in to bottom and sides of pan). Trim edges. 

Tart Filling: 


4 c. blackberries
2 tsp. arrowroot powder
2 tsp. water
Honey and maple syrup to sweeten


1. Combine arrowroot powder and water..stir. Add to berries along with honey and maple syrup...it is a matter of how sweet you want it. 

2. Stir and pour berries in to tart crusts. 

3. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 15-20 minutes. 

I just had to post a picture of our pup in the background. I was trying to take pictures with natural light and she kept standing there staring at me. Probably licking her lips.

We topped ours with coconut whipped cream. I made a mistake in that I forgot to chill the can of coconut milk in the refrigerator overnight. I put it in for a bit, then put it in the freezer. Still did not thicken enough when I whipped it. I poured it in a bowl and froze it for just a little bit till it set up, then scooped it out with a mini scoop. Tasted great. I had flavored it with vanilla and cinnamon. 
With Joy UNquenchable,

Monday, July 20, 2015

Secret Recipe Reveal: Sticky Chicken and Potato Skins

One thing I like about the Secret Recipe Club, that I've had the privilege to be a part of over the last several years, is the challenge of finding a recipe from one blog to make and share. I love receiving my assignment and then browsing all the recipes, reading about the author, learning new and wonderful things. 

This month I was assigned the blog Our Eating Habits, authored by Jamie. Here is a clip from her About Me page:

I love to cook. I love to bake. I love to dine out. Eating is a big part of my life, so I make sure everything that goes into my mouth is tasty. Why waste time and calories on bad food? I strive to be creative and fun in the kitchen. I love trying new recipes, and new restaurants. I am so excited to start this new hobby and share some yummy tidbits with you. I hope you all enjoy!!

Her blog is filled with amazing recipes and I just realized I never even looked at her baking/beverage tab....SAY WHAT!? Man! I'm going to have to go back and take a peek. I pinned a few recipes to try, including her Stuffed Pizza Pretzels, and her Chicken Broccoli Casserole, but ultimately chose her Sticky Chicken Legs and Crispy Potato Skins. I made two because one was a main and one was a side (both of which I needed for a meal anyways). 

I love crock pot recipes and was excited to try a new one...I think for this one I needed to add more seasonings. I loved the flavor, but it needed a bit more seasoning for me. The potato skins were a hit. My hubby got home late from work and even cold he loved them. I'll have to make them again. I attempted to make some with sweet potatoes, but I think I cooked them too long and all the "filling" came right off the skin, just leaving the thin flimsy skin...oh well..I saved the fillings of all potatoes and will make mashed potatoes with them tonight.

Let's get on to the recipes! 

Sticky Chicken Legs
courtesy of Our Eating Habits

1/2 c. Honey
1/2 c. Brown sugar
1/3 c. Balsamic Vinegar
1/3 c. Soy Sauce
3 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. Franks Red Hot Sauce (I had buffalo sauce so used that)
black pepper
10 chicken legs
1 Tbs. cornstarch
1 Tbs. Water


1. Combine first 8 ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer 5 minutes. 

2. Spray inside of crockpot with cooking spray and add chicken. Pour sauce over chicken and stir to coat, then cook on high for 3 hours. Remove chicken. Combine cornstarch and water then add to liquid in crock pot. Stir and cook on high for 20-30 minutes or until sauce thickens. Return chicken to pot and cook until chicken is re-heated through about 20 minutes. 

3. Serve and enjoy.

Crispy Potato Skins
Courtesy of Our Eating Habits


4 medium potatoes
2 Tbs. melted butter
1/2 c. Salsa
2/3 c. shredded cheddar cheese
3 bacon strips cooked and crumbled
2 green onions chopped
6 Tbs. mayo
4 Tbs. sour cream
2 Tbs. ranch dressing
1/2 tsp. garlic powder


1. Clean potatoes and prick with a fork. Wrap in foil and bake in a pre-heated 400 degree oven for 45 minute or until tender. Remove and cool long enough to handle. 
2. Cut potatoes into 4 wedges and scoop out potato. Leave just enough to hold the skin together..take your time so the skins don't rip. Brush melted butter on skins and place skin side down on baking sheet. 
3. Top with salsa, cheese and bacon. Bake for 15 minutes at 450 degrees. Top with green onions. 

4. Mix together remaining 4 ingredients. Scoop in to sandwich bag and drizzle over potatoes.

5. Eat and Enjoy. These were definitely the star of the show.

I felt like the cheese melted too fast so I think next time I would actually bake the skins with just melted butter on for a little bit, then take out, add toppings and bake for about 5 minutes or just until cheese melts. But they were a huge hit, so yay!!!

With Joy UNquenchable,

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Summertime Cool Down Smoothie

In our region of the PNW we typically do not experience high summer temps..maybe a few days here and there, but usually cooler than usual with rain mixed in. This summer has started out very different. We have been experiencing a very dry season and higher than normal temps...this last week and at least the week to come will be in the 90's low hundreds. Yikes! 

Last week I was out doing some shopping by myself and had stopped at a Jamba Juice to get a smoothie, I figured that was better than going to Wendy's and it sounded better too. I love that Jamba has started incorporating more fresh juices and a combo of fresh juices to their smoothies. So, I stopped in. I ordered a smoothie that was made from fresh carrot juice, orange juice, mangoes and bananas. The result was an incredibly delicious smoothie that was both healthy and about 1/2 the calories as the one I normally get. SCORE. I knew I could recreate this at home since we have both a juicer and a high powered blender (Vitamix). With the heat recently, I gave it a try and I will say, it was pretty darn close. Juices and smoothies are a great way to get extra veggies and fruit, or if you have picky eaters. I love juicing, but it takes a lot more fruits and veggies to get a decent amount of juice so I tend to do smoothies more often. I can't buy all organic (though I'd love to), so my rule of thumb typically is to buy the things on the Dirty Dozen list organic if I can...and usually if I'm going to eat the peel I buy it organic. I do buy lemons organic as well because I usually include the peel in smoothies.  

Ingredients: (for 1 smoothie)

1/2 c. fresh carrot juice (you can purchase carrot juice at the store)
1/2 c. orange juice
1 banana
1/2 c. frozen mango 

Combine all ingredients in blender. Blend till smooth. Adjust amounts according to taste. You can use fresh mango and use ice but I like using frozen fruit. 

With Joy UNquenchable,

Monday, June 15, 2015

Secret Recipe Reveal Day: Granita al Caffee con Panna

I am so excited about today's reveal day. Not that I'm ever NOT excited, but this one, well, I was really excited. The admins of Group C of The Secret Recipe Club, assigned me Manu's Menu, as my blog for June. I love receiving my blog assignment each month, browsing through and choosing recipes I might want to make, and then, finally deciding on one! Well, when I clicked the link for this months assignment, her subtitle was "Authentic Italian Home Cooking and More"...that sold me...Italian..yippee..my moms family is Italian. But then, I read that she was born to Sicilian Parents...WHAT!? Part of my moms family is Sicilian...Even more exciting. I was so curious that I asked family members where they all came from (my descendants that is). The ones from Sicily were from Cefalu, the others came from Abruzzo and Naples. What fun learning more about family. 

So, back to Manu, since this post is supposed to be about her and her blog and her amazing recipes, and there are many yummy sounding recipes. Manu lives in Australia with her husband (who is of Indian origin) and her kiddo's. What a fun mix of nationalities, and her recipes reflect that. Take time to read her About Me page to learn more about her family. 

I only pinned two recipes to try, even though there were so many more that I would like to make...it's been hot here in the Pacific Northwest and so I wanted to try something cold. Her Salted Caramel Gelato sounded wonderful and my family LOVES Gelato and ice cream. However, it was her Granita al caffe con panna that really caught my attention. One, it was a Sicilian recipe, and two I remembered the coffee shop in the grocery store we shopped at when I was younger, served a granita and I loved it. Granted it was coming out of a large machine..lol, but it was still good. This was the recipe I was going to make! I'm glad I did. It was a HUGE hit with my girl, and so perfect for the hot weather. I would love to try different flavors. 

This was an easy recipe, and fairly quick. I think I could've let it go just a bit longer, or maybe put it in the freezer for just a bit. It seemed to "melt" quickly and I'm not sure if that's how it's supposed to be. I took the leftovers out of the freezer the next day, let it soften, ran a fork through it and made it again...it held up a little better, and still tasted the same. My youngest actually liked when it was slightly melted. Either way it tasted great. 

1.  I had instant espresso powder, but then realized I had coffee beans from the coffee shop that my daughter works at so I used those and made a small, strong pot of coffee.

2.  I didn't have caster sugar, so I just took my sugar and ran it through my Vitamix for a bit. I don't use white sugar, but pure cane or Organic pure cane and I find the granules are a bit larger.


1 1/4 c. cold water
1 1/2 c. hot coffee (espresso)
2/3 c. caster sugar
Lightly Sweetened Whipped Cream (I'm not a fan of store bought whipped topping anymore, so we just make our own)


1. Stir sugar in to hot coffee and stir until it is dissolved. Add cold water and refrigerate for at least 2 hours till chilled. 

2. Pour in to ice cream maker and churn for 20-30 minutes or until it reaches a sorbet like consistency.

3. Pour in to a glass, top with sweetened whipped cream and enjoy! We topped ours with some chocolate covered coffee beans.

Thank you Manu for taking me to a place in my lineage that I have longed to go. I can't wait to keep following your blog and make more recipes. 
Check out more Secret Recipe Club recipes by clicking the links below. There's bound to be some amazing ones...probably all of them. 

With Joy UNquenchable,


Related Posts Widget for Blogs by LinkWithin