Almond Poppyseed Muffins

Almond Poppyseed Muffins have always been my favorite muffin. Growing up my mom would always make the Krusteaz boxed mix until one day, our grocery stores stopped carrying it. How could they….it was my favorite muffin! For years I went without it until one day in college I found the boxed mix in Seattle. After that discovery and many purchased boxes of it, I decided to try to conquer making it on my own. The boxed mix was so good that I figured it couldn’t be too hard, but boy was I wrong! After over 2 years of sub-par muffins and much defeat, I finally tried and altered a recipe until it was just perfect. I have made it 3 times this week and they still aren’t old. The secret is the almond paste…it gives it the delightfully almond taste that can not be achieved with almond extract alone. I dare you to try them, you will be glad you did!

photo-17Almond Poppyseed Muffins
~1/2 cup sugar
~1 egg
~1/4 cup milk
~1/2 cup sour cream
~1/3 cup oil
~2 tsp almond extract
~1 1/3 cup flour
~1/2 tsp baking powder
~1/2 tsp salt
~1/4 tsp baking soda
~2 TBS poppy seeds
~3.5oz of almond paste shredded (the one I bought came in a 7oz tube, so I used 1/2 the tube)

Preheat the oven to 350. Mix the egg, sugar, milk, sour cream, oil, and almond extract. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. Add this dry mixture to the wet mixture until well blended. Then add in the shredded almond paste. Stir until evenly dispersed and then mix in the poppy seeds. Pour in greased muffin tin and bake for 15-20 minutes. The muffin tops will still be mostly white when done, but the sides in/near the muffin tin will be browned. Enjoy thoroughly…once it reaches your taste buds, you will be hard pressed to only eat one! ūüėČ

Advertisements

Gram’s Sugar Cookies

These sugar cookies always bring back nostalgic memories of Christmases spent with my grandma in Pennsylvania.  She had to have spent weeks preparing for our trips, as her house was filled with more goodies than a young mind can imagine.  I remember eating dozens of these cookies each visit, convinced that there were no other sugar cookies that could compare.  They are soft and sweet, but not overly so and when paired with frosting they are perfect!  The recipe makes a lot of cookies, but unfrosted ones can last weeks in the freezer. So, in the spirit of Christmas:

photo-7Gram’s Sugar Cookies
~1 cup brown sugar
~1 cup white sugar
~1 cup Crisco
~1 tsp vanilla
~1 tsp lemon flavoring
~2 eggs
~5 cups of flour
~2 tsp baking powder
~1 tsp salt
~1 tsp nutmeg
~1 cup buttermilk
~1 tsp baking soda

Mix together the butter, sugars, vanilla, and lemon flavoring.  Then add the 2 eggs.  In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg.  Finally, mix together the cup of buttermilk with the tsp of baking soda.  To the sugar mixture add alternately the buttermilk mixture and the flour mixture until it is all mixed together.  Refrigerate overnight.  The next day, preheat the oven to 350.  Roll out the dough on a floured board, cut into shapes, and bake for 9-11 minutes.  The cookies will be evenly cooked, but should not be browned.

I would recommend tackling cutting out the cookies one day and frosting another day, as it makes about 5 dozen cookies.  We usually use the frosting recipe on the back of a powdered sugar box.  It is delicious and adds just the right amount of sweetness!

Pumpkin Bread

This pumpkin bread is hands down my favorite pumpkin bread that I have ever tried. ¬†My mom got this from a mom at our high school and we have been making it ever since! ¬†You won’t ever want to use a boxed pumpkin bread mix after trying this! ¬†This weekend is Club Cross Country Nationals in Bend and many of our Oiselle teammates have joined us for a weekend of racing, fun, and of course baked goods! ¬†As this is one of the baked goods being consumed, I thought it was fitting to post the recipe. ¬†ūüôā

Ben Bruce thoroughly enjoying it!

Pumpkin Bread
-4 eggs
-3 cups sugar
-1-16oz can of pumpkin
-1 cup water
-3 1/2 cups of flour
-2 tsp baking soda
-1 tsp salt
-2 tsp baking powder
-1 tsp ground cloves
-1 tsp cinnamon
-1 tsp nutmeg
-1 tsp allspice

Preheat the oven to 350.  Mix all the ingredients together and pour into 2 greased loaf pans.  Bake for an hour or until a toothpick comes out clean.  It is SO good!

Yam Soufflé


My mom received this recipe from a coworker in 1982 and it has been my favorite for as long as I can remember.  It is perfect for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners, but really should be made any time you can come up with an excuse to do so!  We have changed the original recipe (by increasing the amount of yams, reducing the amount of sugar, and altering the topping), and although I am biased, I would say it is better than before!

photo-9Yam Soufflé

~4.5 cups cooked yams (about 5 medium ones)
~1/3 cup white sugar (don’t use brown sugar, it will affect the color)
~2 eggs
~1/2 tsp salt
~1/3 stick of butter melted
~1/2 cup milk
~1 TBS vanilla

topping:
~1/3 cup brown sugar
~1/2 cup chopped pecans
~1/2 cup oatmeal (regular or quick oats are fine)
~1/3 stick of butter melted

Preheat the oven to 350. Remove the yams from their skins. Mix the first 7 ingredients and place in a covered, large greased casserole dish. Mix the ingredients for the topping and sprinkle over the top. Bake for 45-60 minutes and make sure to serve yourself up a generous serving. ¬†Trust me, you won’t be disappointed!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

With Thanksgiving on my mind and the lingering feeling of still being too full from yesterday, I decided a pumpkin recipe was in order.  We received this recipe from a family friend and my older sister Jessie made them to take to Thanksgiving and they were delicious!!

photo-6Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
~1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
~1 1/2 cups sugar
~1 cup pumpkin puree
~1 egg
~1 tsp vanilla
~2 1/2 cups flour
~1 tsp baking soda
~1 tsp baking powder
~1 tsp cinnamon
~1 tsp nutmeg
~1/2 tsp salt
~16 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar on medium speed with a mixer until fluffy. ¬†Add pumpkin, egg, and vanilla and beat until well blended. ¬†In a separate bowl, mix the dry ingredients together (flour, soda, powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt). ¬†Add this dry mixture to the wet pumpkin mixture and mix well. ¬†Hand stir in the chocolate chips. Drop by heaping teaspoons 1 inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. ¬†Bake 13-15 minutes or until lightly browned, but be sure to not over bake. ¬†It makes roughly 3 dozen cookies and can also be topped with cream cheese frosting if desired. ¬†ūüôā

Slow-Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

We made this Chicken Tortilla Soup in the Crock-Pot for a Halloween Party we had a few weeks ago and it was so good and easy, I am making it again today for a Mexican potluck! The aroma of it is already thick in the air…..is it dinner yet? ¬†It’s delicious on its own, but it is hard to resist if you add lots of cheese and/or sour cream before indulging.

chicken tortilla soupChicken Tortilla Soup
-4 cups chicken broth
-1 can (15oz) petite diced tomatoes
-1 can (10oz) enchilada sauce
-1 can (4oz) diced green chilies
-1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
-10oz frozen corn kernels
-2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
-1 medium onion, diced
-2 cloves of garlic, minced
-1 tsp ground cumin
-1 tsp of chili powder
-1/4 tsp black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker. ¬†Cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours. ¬†Remove the chicken from the soup near the end, shred into bite-sized pieces, and return to the soup. ¬†Garnish to your heart’s content with cilantro, cheese, sour cream, avocado, and tortilla chips. ¬†Bon App√©tit!!

Date Nut Breads

The to-die-for Sticky Date Pudding has me on a date kick, so in the spirit, here is another date recipe. My teammate Lauren unearthed this recipe from over 10 years ago so I had to try it…old recipes are the best!! ¬†In my na√Įve thinking I thought somehow after it baked I wouldn‚Äôt actually taste the coffee in the original recipe, but the coffee taste was very present.¬† Both of my roommates loved it with the coffee, but I thought it tasted like dirt (I am not a fan of coffee).¬† I was determined to try again so that I could actually give it a fair evaluation.¬† I did some research, altered the recipe a bit and loved it!¬† It is a very moist, delicious bread!¬† I am providing both recipes so you can choose depending on your preference.¬† Enjoy!

date nut breadCoffee Date Nut Bread
1 cup of hot coffee
1 cup (or more) of chopped dates
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 cup of sugar
1 tablespoon of butter
1 egg
1 teaspoon of vanilla
1 ¬Ĺ cups of flour
1 cup of chopped walnuts

Preheat the oven to 325.  Mix hot coffee, dates, and baking soda.  Let soak while preparing the rest of the bread (but do not let soak for more than 10 minutes).  Mix the remaining ingredients and then fold the coffee/date mixture into the remaining ingredients.  Pour into the pan and bake for 45-60 minutes.

Spiced Date Nut Bread
1 cup of hot water
1 cup (or more) of chopped dates
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 cup of sugar
1 tablespoon of butter
1 egg
1 teaspoon of vanilla
3/4 cups of white flour
3/4 cups of wheat flour
1 cup of chopped walnuts
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of nutmeg
1/8-1/4 teaspoon of cloves

Preheat the oven to 325.  Mix hot water, dates, and baking soda.  Let soak while preparing the rest of the bread (can soak for up to 30 minutes).  Mix the remaining ingredients and then fold the water/date mixture into the remaining ingredients.  Pour into the pan and bake for 45-60 minutes.