Gingerbread Date Muffins

Another post!  What!

Now that I’m finally getting back into the swing of things, I’m remembering how fast 2+ months are going to fly by, and then I’ll be completely and utterly OUT of the swing of things again.  Please forgive me in advance.  Maybe I’ll find juggling 3 kids and a newborn super easy?  (I can dream, eh?)  I’m pretty sure I’ll be pretty swamped in the first few… six… months or so.  

All you moms out there – I’m so excited to get my body back to normal!  I don’t mind feeling pregnant, but I’m glad it isn’t forever.  Come back to me regular clothes.  Pants with buttons and zippers.  Shirts that my belly stick out of now.  

This belly.  It’s going to burst.  It’s pretty amazing what our bodies are capable of.  Talk about stretchy skin!  Well, I don’t think mine has a whole lot of stretch left, but I’m glad it was stretchy at some point. 

Anyhow, enough baby talk.  We need food.  I’m so happy food is a necessity to living.  Yay, food!  

Coffee is too, right?  

We’ve somehow made it to yet another weekend.  What could be better than that?  Except maybe, if someone made these muffins for you, fresh for brunch one of those mornings?

I have had these as a brain-child for some time, but (as I’ve said before) I had lost my mojo for awhile there.  They finally came to fruition!  And I loved them.  So did the kids.  Think classic gingerbread giving birth to muffin babies with sweet dates studded throughout.  I love gingerbread.  Basically, anything spiced, especially when there’s molasses involved.  Think Molasses Cookies.  And dates!  Wow.  They are nature’s candy.  So, so good.  I have to hide the [huge] bag that I get at Costco from myself (<–out of sight, out of mind), because I eat them like candy.  And yes, they’re fruit, but that sugar content is a bit high, I believe.  If you ever are in need of a great date recipe, make these Oatmeal Date Cookies.  They be so amazingly amazing.  

So!  To the muffins.  Make them for breakfast.  Eat them warm out of the oven.  If there are some leftover for day 2, pop them in the microwave to make those dates oh-so-mushy before you slather them with butter.  Believe me, I did it, and it’s highly recommendable.  

Gingerbread Date Mufffins
Yields 1
Gingerbread muffins - molasses, spices, along with lots of chewy, sweet dates. A great breakfast or snack choice!
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Ingredients
  1. 1/2 cup butter, softened
  2. 1/2 cup white sugar
  3. 1/3 cup molasses
  4. 1 egg
  5. 1/2 cup sour cream
  6. 1/2 cup milk
  7. 1 tsp ground ginger
  8. 2 tsp cinnamon
  9. pinch cloves
  10. 2 1/2 cups flour
  11. 1/2 cup oatmeal
  12. 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  13. 1/2 tsp salt
  14. 1 cup dates, chopped (optional)
  15. sugar for topping
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Prepare muffin tins (grease, or use muffin cups).
  2. Cream together butter and sugar. Add molasses and egg. Beat well.
  3. Mix in sour cream, and milk.
  4. Add dry ingredients. Mix well. Stir in the dates if you're using (I'd highly recommend!).
  5. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 17-20 minutes, or until the middles are set.
  6. Enjoy warm, slathered with butter!
Notes
  1. They will keep fresh in an airtight container for 3-4 days. You can also pop them in the freezer to save for later days (like when you might be having a baby and will want a yummy, quick breakfast).
Whisks and Wooden Spoons http://whisksandwoodenspoons.com/
 
Linked up on Sugar, Spice, and Family Life


No Churn Cookie Dough Ice Cream

Ice Cream | May 14, 2017 | By

I know!  You guys are all going to go into shock – what with two posts in a week! 

I hope you get why I wasn’t posting though…  This whole pregnant thing.  Well.  Let’s just say it hasn’t gotten easier.  I’m sicker, longer-every time, I swear.  Third trimester has me all happy and shouting for joy that I feel normal again!  (Other than the growth of my body in certain areas.)  Finally though, I have some motivation and focus back.  Feels great.

So!  We’re back in ice cream mode.  Kind of.  

We want to be anyhow.  The weather here teases us with a day of warmth and sunshine, only to get cold and damp for a week or two following.  

Ice cream is good, no matter what the weather though.  Especially if you can make it yourself, without a machine, and put the desired amount of cookie dough in it (ie – more cookie dough than ice cream?).  

Anybody else indulge in ice cream as a midnight snack, perhaps a bit too frequently?  Or is it just me, and my pregnant self?  I must say, cookie dough is probably my go-to.  If I don’t know what kind to pick (I’m a terrible decider-of-things at times), I fall back on good ole chocolate chip cookie dough.  Yum.  

Anyhow.  We’ve made this quite a few times, and normally, I don’t put the whole batch of dough in the ice cream.  This time, we put it allll in.  And there was bascially as much dough as ice cream.  Which, to me, sounds like a pretty good deal.  Hubby thought maybe I had gone a little crazy (a little MORE crazy, most likely).  But it’s up to you.  If you have dough left over, freeze it – use it in your next batch.  There’s totally enough for two batches if you are a sane ice cream + cookie dough eater.  I like the 1:1 ratio though.  It’s kind of like my 1:1 ratio for cake to icing.  It’s gotta be even.  Some of each in every bit.  Y’get my drift?

The recipe itself, well, it’s pretty darn close to my other no-churn recipes.  The dough is pulled from my Cookie Dough Ball recipe, but cut in half.  

Linked up on Life Sew Savory, Meal Plan Monday

No Churn Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream
Smooth and sweet no-churn ice cream with as much (or as little) cookie dough as you want!
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Cookie Dough
  1. 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  2. 1/2 tsp salt
  3. Pinch of baking soda
  4. 1/2 cup margarine, room temperature
  5. 1/3 cup white sugar
  6. 1/3 cup brown sugar
  7. 1/2 tsp vanilla
  8. 2 Tbsp cup milk
  9. 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Ice Cream
  1. 2 cups whipping cream
  2. 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  3. 1/2 tsp vanilla
Cookie Dough
  1. Beat margarine and sugars together until light and fluffy. Add milk and vanilla.
  2. Stir in flour, baking soda, and salt and mix on low-speed (or stir by hand) until incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips. Pop in the freezer for 10-15 minutes for easier handling.**
  3. Roll into 1/2" balls, or preffered size for in your ice cream.
Ice Cream
  1. In a large bowl, whip the cream to stiff peaks. Fold in sweetened condensed milk, and vanilla.
  2. Fold in cookie dough, and pour into a 9x9 or loaf pan.
  3. Cover and freeze, for at least 6 hours, or overnight.
Notes
  1. I used a chocolate bar with caramel pieces (chopped up) for the pictures in this recipe. I've made it with chocolate chips too, though. I'd say use whatever yummy kind of chocolate you can get your hands on!
  2. **If you run out of time, you don't have to pop it in the freezer, it just might be a little harder to make into little balls.
Whisks and Wooden Spoons http://whisksandwoodenspoons.com/

Need more ice cream recipes?  Check these out:

No-Machine Ginger Ice Cream

No-Churn Blueberry Lavender Curd Ice Cream

Orange Poppy Seed Muffins with Tangy Orange Glaze

I told you I’d be back with something a wake-me-up, comfort-style recipe!  

Muffins.  Best breakfast ever.  I know, I know.  They’re basically glorified cupcakes.  But they’re so much more than cupcakes.  First of all, there’s generally some sort of fruit in them.  (Fruit=healthy breaky, right?)  Second, you get to warm them up and slather them with butter.  It’s not looked up well if you do that to a cupcake.  Though I’m sure it’d  be pretty dang tasty.  Butter helps all things.  Except acne.  Never put butter on your face.  Please. 

Anyhow.  We’re going to go citrus because it’s February and all things are citrus.  

I go with the flow.  Sometimes.

Then we’re going to throw in a bunch of poppy seeds, because: crunch.  They just make things better.  

Top it all off with a tangy orange glaze, and you have yourselves the best kind of good morning muffin.  Definitely enjoy with a warm cup of something.  It is winter, after all.  (And who doesn’t need a hot coffee in the morn?)

This recipe is adapted from Girl vs Dough (great blog, look around while you’re there).  She made grapefruit muffins, and she made them a bit healthier than I made mine.  (I’m guilty of hardly ever using whole wheat flour – it makes such a healthy tasting final product.  Generally whole wheat baked good that I make taste like dirt.  Nobody likes to eat dirt, amiright?  I eat whole wheat bread.  That’s it guys.  White flour in all the other things.)

I also didn’t use fresh juice.  I didn’t have any.  I’m never prepared.  I only had one egg, so thank goodness I only needed one.  Instead of fresh juice, we use a scoops of frozen orange juice concentrate.  I learned this trick from a dear friend to whose house I was taking these muffins.  I knew she’d appreciate the tang and unpreparedness of my baking.  It’s super easy, and adds such a nice zing.  She makes AMAZING scones using the same method.  Have I mentioned she’s brilliant?  

To the muffins!  You can seriously throw them together in about ten minutes, make the glaze while baking, and enjoy.  Totally doable for a fresh breakfast, or store them, airtight for 3-4 days and heat up for an on-the-run breaky.

Orange Poppy Seed Muffins with Tangy Orange Glaze
Yields 12
A winter wake-me-up muffin! Crunch and tang.
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Muffins
  1. 2/3 cup sugar
  2. 1/3 cups vegetable oil
  3. 1/4 cup poppy seeds
  4. 2 heaping tsp frozen orange juice concentrate
  5. 2 tsp vanilla
  6. 1 egg
  7. 2 1/2 cups flour
  8. 3 1/2 tsp baking powder
  9. 1 tsp salt
  10. 1 1/4 cup milk
Glaze
  1. 2 Tbsp butter, melted
  2. 1 1/4 cup icing sugar
  3. 1/2 tsp vanilla
  4. 2-3 Tbsp frozen orange juice concentrate
For the Muffins
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line or grease 14 muffin cups.
  2. Mix together sugar, vegetable oil, poppy seeds, and orange juice concentrate.
  3. Add vanilla and eggs. Stir well.
  4. Alternately add dry ingredients and milk.
  5. Fill muffin cups level to top.
  6. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until the middle of the muffins has set.
For the Glaze
  1. Whisk melted butter, icing sugar, vanilla and orange juice concentrate until smooth. Add more icing sugar if too runny, or more orange juice (or milk) if too thick.
Notes
  1. You can definitely use a mixer or a wooden spoon to make these! Whatever you prefer.
Adapted from Girl Versus Dough
Adapted from Girl Versus Dough
Whisks and Wooden Spoons http://whisksandwoodenspoons.com/
Also, if you have any glaze left over, feel free to cut a muffin in half, and drizzle it over the insides too. Please tell me if you do this. I need to know I’m not alone.  *Ahem…

Linked up on Create, Link, Inspire party, Sugar Spice and Family Life, Meal Plan Monday

 

Pumpkin Crumb Cheesecake

Dessert | October 25, 2016 | By

Baking tip of the week:  Clean your oven. 

Do it. 

It’s not worth the ongoing smell of things burning, or the slight layer of smoke in your house that kind of burns your eyes and nose.  

Take it from me.  You should clean your oven. 

(Not that I know from experience or anything.)

I seriously am not sure when I last cleaned my oven.  But then again, I can’t remember where I put my tea 5 minutes ago.  Or what I should be doing right now?  There is probably something I should be doing right now. 

Pumpkin Crumb Cheesecake

Pumpkin Crumb Cheesecake

Pumpkin Crumb Cheesecake

It is with sorrow that I tell you that I made this delectable Pumpkin Cheesecake in an oven that smelled like burning hair.  (Worst.  Smell.  EVER!) However, it did nothing to hinder the amazing-ness of the cheesecake itself.  It simply meant that I couldn’t smell the wonderfulness of the cheesecake baking.  

I made this cheesecake a few weeks ago, and it was pretty dang amazing.  So!  I thought I should make use of another seasonal flavour, and turn it into a pumpkin cheesecake!  The crust is probably my favourite crust on a cheesecake so far!  It’s like a shortbread crust.  So it’s basically amazing.  And then you make a wonderfully easy cheesecake, and top it with more shortbread-like crumbs.  

Crumbs, crisps, crumbles.  They’re the best, aren’t they?  Anything topped with a mixture of sugar, flour, and butter is SO good.  There’s just no arguing that.  

Do I occasionally open the oven to steal extra crumbs off the top?  Maybe.  You’ll have to catch me in the act to make me admit to it.  

Pumpkin Crumb Cheesecake Pumpkin Crumb Cheesecake Pumpkin Crumb Cheesecake

On to the recipe! 

Pumpkin Crumb Cheesecake
A buttery shortbread crust, creamy spiced pumpkin filling, and a yummy crumb to top it off!
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Crust
  1. 1 1/2 cups flour
  2. 3/4 cup brown sugar
  3. 3/4 cup butter
  4. Pinch of salt
Cheesecake
  1. 2 pkgs cream cheese, room temperature
  2. 2 eggs
  3. 1 tsp vanilla
  4. 1 cup pureed pumpkin
  5. 1/2 tsp salt
  6. 1/3 cup white sugar
  7. 1/4 cup brown sugar
  8. 1 tsp cinnamon
  9. Pinch of cloves
  10. 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  11. 1/2 tsp ginger
Crumb
  1. 1/2 cup flour
  2. 1/2 cup brown sugar
  3. 1/4 cup butter
For the Crust
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Butter a 10-inch spring form pan.
  2. Mix all ingredients together with a pastry cutter, until it resembles small crumbs.
  3. Press into pan, and bake for 6-8 minutes (until slightly browned).
For the Cheesecake
  1. With a mixer, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add in eggs, and vanilla, mix until combined. Add in the pumpkin. Stir in salt, sugar and spices.
  2. Spread over crust.
  3. Bake for 15 minutes.
Crumb
  1. While the cheesecake is baking, mix together flour, sugar, and butter until it resembles small crumbs. I totally do this with a wooden spoon. But you could use a pastry cutter as well.
  2. Don't eat them all.
  3. After the cheesecake has baked for 15 minutes, pull it out carefully and top with crumb.
  4. Put it back in the oven, and bake for 23-25 minutes. It should be slightly jiggly, but almost set. Let cool at room temperature before serving. Refrigerate any leftovers.
Notes
  1. Great served with a dollop of whipped cream and a drizzle of caramel sauce.
Adapted from A Beautiful Mess
Adapted from A Beautiful Mess
Whisks and Wooden Spoons http://whisksandwoodenspoons.com/
Pumpkin Crumb Cheesecake

Oh!  The microwave keeps beeping.  I think I found my tea!  

Linked up on Buns in My Oven, Lil Luna, Lamberts Lately, Sugar, Spice and Family Life (FEATURED!), Nap-time Creations, Ginger Snap Crafts

Pumpkin Crumb Cheesecake

No-Machine Ginger Ice Cream

Ice Cream | August 10, 2016 | By

Have you ever had ginger ice cream? 

Well, first I must ask, do you like ginger?  Because if you don’t, you won’t like this.  However, if you do – this is going to be your go-to ice cream. 

Ginger Ice Cream

First off – no ice cream machine = no problemo.  I do not have counter (or cupboard) space for an ice cream machine at this point, as awesome as they are.  In comes no-machine or no-churn ice cream, and we have zero problem!  It freezes up like a dream!  Scoops like store-bought ice cream.  It’s wayy creamier than most store bought ice creams (because it’s made with actual whipping cream – lots of it!).  It’s not the same as store-bought.  But that’s okay.  It might be better-er.  Especially when you throw in some ginger.  Wow.  

Has anyone ever had ice cream that is spicy?  This is it.  You have cold (the ice part), creamy (that’d be the cream – duh), sweet and spicy (the sweetened condensed milk and ginger, respectively)!  It’s a party on your taste buds.  

There is a local ice cream shop around here that makes homemade ginger ice cream.  That’s where this idea was born.  Can I have ginger ice cream at home!?  With only FIVE ingredients?!   Sure thang.  

Ingredients

It’s super easy.  And there are so many options, if you really don’t like ginger.  We’ve made cookie dough, vanilla, and vanilla with chocolate shavings.  (Cookie dough is also amazing, because you can put ALL the dough in there.  Basically cookie dough, with a bit of ice cream.)  I’m thinking bubble gum for the kiddos next. 

No-Churn Ginger Ice Cream

No-Machine Ginger Ice Cream
Yields 9
Spicy ice cream without a machine! So much flavour, so few ingredients, so little time involved in the making!
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Prep Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups whipping cream
  2. 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  3. 1/2 tsp vanilla
  4. 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  5. 1 x 3 inch nub of ginger
Instructions
  1. Place ginger in food processor, and process until it's in small chunks (like skor bit-sized, or a bit smaller).
  2. Whip your cream, until stiff peaks form.
  3. Fold in the sweetened condensed milk, ground ginger, and vanilla, gently.
  4. Add ginger, and fold again.
  5. Place in a 9 x 9 or loaf pan.
  6. Freeze for at least 6 hours, or overnight.
Notes
  1. You can add more or less ginger, as to your liking. The size of your chunks of ginger - also up to you!
Whisks and Wooden Spoons http://whisksandwoodenspoons.com/
Anyhow, we’re enjoying the *sigh* last month of summer before school starts by getting ice cream, working on being outside all the time, and hanging out all the laundry.  

Boys, trampoline, popsicles

 

 

*Boys hanging on the trampoline eating popsicles

Recipe linked up on Buns in My Oven

No- Machine Ginger Ice Cream

Broccoli Cheddar Quiche

Savoury | September 24, 2012 | By

Before I get started, I just want to do a shout out to a fellow blogger.  I love looking at other blogs for ideas, and inspiration, not to mention wonderful recipes.  And I’ve been following Madison for at least 6 months, and I love what she posts.  It’s a mixture of fashion, food, great products, and life.  She’s really down to earth.  She does ‘No Fat Talk’ posts that focus on not talking trash about our bodies (because, ladies, I know it’s really hard not to).  Just check her out.  She’s at Espresso and Cream.

Okay, now that we’re done that, onto other things.

{I caught Cael trying on Daddy’s shoes the other day – so cute.  Sorry it’s slightly blurry…  He just wouldn’t stand still!}

So, as I’ve said many a time, life is crazy busy.  It doesn’t seem to ever slow down.  And I am just barely keeping up.  (What am I going to do after baby #2 comes?!)  I’ve had multiple great post ideas floating around my head for the past few weeks, and no time to get them written up & posted.

Between working part-time, trying to keep up with Cael (who’s full speed ahead, and down to one nap a day), keeping the house together and clean, cooking/baking, trying to find time to help out with church programs, and still have time for friends and family…  I’m clean outta time.  At the moment though, house doesn’t look too shabby, laundry’s folded (not put away though, mind you), and I have myself a cup of lemon tea.  So I’m writing this.  And it feels good.  To be typing, sharing food and just having some sitting down time.

I’ve been reading a book by Lee Strobel called, ‘The Case for the Real Jesus‘.  And it’s really great.  I think it was written with teens in mind, but it’s a great book for teens and adults, and it’s written in a way for really easy understanding, I’d definitely recommend picking it up to read sometime.

Also, we do a ‘Young Adults’ (which is really whatever age…) group once a week.  We’ve just started up for the year, and we’ve decided to commit to memorizing scripture verses every week.  I think it’s  really great idea.  This week, I’m going to memorize Psalm 27:4 – “One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.”  I find that I don’t linger enough on the thought of heaven, and being close to God, and that I should do so more often.  So hopefully, this verse will stick in my mind and help me to remember to think on such things.

Now to some foooood.  Awhile ago (April, to be exact), I wrote a post about quiche.  Well, I’m onto the quiche again.  This time, I made a few changes in vegetables, but that’s it.  I just had to share it with you, because it looked so pretty.

The colours are just…  vibrant, and I thought they looked great.  So here goes.

Quiche (Version #2)

(Makes 2 9-inch quiche)

Pie crust for 2 pies

1 cup broccoli, chopped

1 onion, chopped

1 yellow pepper, chopped

1 large tomato, chopped

8 eggs

1 cup cheddar cheese, grated

1 1/2 cups milk

1 Tbsp flour

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

2 tsp parsley

Pinch chili powder

1 Tbsp melted butter

Preheat your oven to 350F.  Line 2 9-inch pie plates with pie dough.  Sprinkle celery, onion, peppers and cheese over pie crust.  In a bowl, whisk together eggs, milks, flour, salt, pepper, parsley, chili powder and melted butter.  Whisk.  Pour over vegetables and cheese in pie plate.  Bake quiche for 30-45 minutes (it really just depends on the oven), or until set.

Now, I figure it’s time to get on with the 30 Day Challenge.  So here goes.

Day 8 – A moment you felt most satisfied with your life

This is a tough one.  I’m really not sure what to write.

Hmm…  I felt really satisfied on my wedding day.  I had  finally married him, the guy I’d been dreaming of getting married to since elementary school (honestly).  Standing beside him, kissing him and just, being joined together with him, with all of our family and friends to see.

It was breathtaking (though, that might have been the cold air too… )

…  Just kidding!

It was great.  I do feel pretty satisfied most days though.  When I look and see all the blessings I have.  A great hubby, the cutest, funniest little boy, and another baby on the way.  Not to mention the family, friends, and material blessings…  they abound.  It’s great.  So why do I complain?  I just forget to think about all these things.  So many great things.

What about you?  When have you felt most satisfied with your life?  I’d love to hear yours…