Saturday, December 31, 2011

it's not 2012 yet......cinnamon brown butter breakfast puffs

Why not enjoy one more delicious donuty, muffiny, treat before you start that resolution to get in shape or lose a few pounds?    This is the perfect breakfast treat for that.  I saw this recipe pop up Wednesday night on Smitten Kitchen's blog and made these Thursday morning.  

Again, my pictures don't do these justice.  The best part of them?  They are rolled in browned butter.  Browned butter is like heaven. 

Enough of my talking.  If you make these, you won't be disappointed.  
Cinnamon Brown Butter Breakfast Puffs
(recipe from Smitten Kitchen)

If you don’t wish to use buttermilk, you can replace it with regular milk and nix the baking soda (keeping the baking powder). I like to get the toppings ready first because they take so little time to bake, you don’t want to be scrambling to have something to dip them in.

Yield: 9 to 12 standard muffin-size puffs or 30-ish miniature ones. 

2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
6 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup (5 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus extra for greasing muffin cups
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter 12 standard size or 30 miniature muffin cups, or line cups with paper liners.
Prepare coatings: In a small saucepan, melt 6 tablespoons butter over medium heat and continue to cook it, stirring frequently, until brown bits form on the bottom and it smells nutty and heavenly. Immediately remove from heat and set aside. In a small bowl, combine 2/3 cup sugar and cinnamon. Set aside as well.

Prepare puffs: Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg together in a medium bowl and set aside. In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat softened butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Mix in 1/3 of flour mixture, followed by 1/2 of buttermilk, repeating again and finishing with the flour mixture. Mix only until combined.
Spoon into prepared muffin cups, filling only 3/4 of the way. (I filled mine higher and they ended up spilling over a bit and doming less than they are capable of.) Bake standard sized muffins for 20 to 25 minutes and miniature muffins for 12 to 14 minutes. When finished, muffins will feel springy to the touch and a tester inserted into the center will come out clean. Transfer them in their pan to a wire rack.
As soon as you feel you’re able to pick one up, take your first puff and roll the top and upper edges in the browned butter. Don’t be afraid to pick up the browned butter solids at the bottom of the saucepan; they’re the dreamiest part. Let any excess butter drip off for a second before gently rolling the butter-soaked cake top in cinnamon-sugar. I find if you roll too firmly, or have too much wet/not absorbed butter on top, the sugar can clump off, which is heartbreaking. Transfer puff to wire rack to set and repeat with remaining puffs. Eat warm.

For an even more indulgent, doughnut-like puff: Make an extra two tablespoons of the browned butter and roll the whole puff in it and the cinnamon sugar. 

Do ahead: Puffs are best within hours after they are baked. They can be made it advance and stored in a freezer bag until needed, too. Simply spread them out on a baking tray and reheat them until warm in the oven.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Fill it...a little late.

Sorry this is a bit late, we were at the Aquarium all day! 

1.   New Years is     a great way to start over.  This is my time to organize, and have a fresh start   .

2.   One of my New Year's resolutions will be   to organize my life, and to lose a few pounds! (I guess that was two).     

3.  A New Year's resolution I've made in the past was to   to get out more.  I like staying in and since having Jack it's hard to get out!  I did better at it this year, but I still could improve    .

4. The most time consuming resolution I ever made was    I can't think of one   .

5.  This year I will be spending New Year's Eve    at a friend's party! 

6.  If I could wish one thing for my new year it would be    to be a better wife and parent everyday  .

7.  2012 is going to be    a great year....I am hoping for a lot of changes  .

Hope you have a great New Years!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

No Name Meat review and giveaway....

If you are a regular reader, you know that I am always looking for simple, no fuss, great tasting meals to make on those working nights.  Well along came No Name Meats......
Over thirty-five years ago, in a small neighborhood butcher shop, a local butcher began selling delicious, hand-cut steaks. These steaks cooked up tender and juicy and, as rumor had it, tasted incredible. Word began to spread. When his customers asked the butcher what these steaks were called, he simply replied, “They don’t have a name.” Soon, people were coming from miles around to get the steaks with “No Name,” and a legend was born.
One of my favorite stores to do my grocery shopping is Jewel.  Every time I shop there I see No Name products in the meat freezer section, but I have never tried them.  Recently my husband and I had the opportunity to try two products from the No Name brand: No Name Steaks – Petite Cut and and No Name Superb & Simple – Parmesan Crusted Chicken Breasts.

We have not had the Steaks, but we make the  Parmesan Crusted Chicken Breast last night. They were delicious and went well with broccoli cheddar rice and a salad.   For $6.99 we were able to get two Parmesan Crusted Chicken breasts which were so easy to heat and serve.  I will definitely will be buying these again; especially for those days I come home form work and am not in the mood to cook.  

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

MIA and a winner!

Sorry I have been a bit MIA.  I have been busy spending time with a sick family this break.  Pneumonia, strep throat and a sinus infection.    I don't think it could get any more sick than that.  
I will post my Christmas pics a bit later, but I have a winner to announce.

The winner of Shabby Apple jewelry is.......#25 Kim.  Kim an email has been sent, please respond to claim your prize!

I hope you are all much happier and healthier, and enjoyed your holiday!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas.

I hope you all have a VERY Merry Christmas. 
Enjoy the holiday and the rest of the weekend with you families.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Fill in the blanks...Christmas edition.

1.   The best way to spread Christmas cheer is     doing good deeds for others   .

2.   The thing I love most about Christmas is   spending time with friends and family and relaxing.  Christmas break is always my favorite time of year!

3.  The holiday season is a time for   being thankful for all you have and enjoying family    .

4. My favorite thing to eat at the holidays is    Christmas Cookies.....I can't get enough!   

5.  I will be spending Christmas    with my family and my in-laws. 

6.  Tis better to (give or receive?)   give. Although I stress out about finding the perfect gift.  I love giving...but receiving is not so bad .

7.  I'm dreaming of a    relaxing, fun and white     Christmas.

I hope you have a very Merry Christmas!


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Shabby Apple Giveaway!

Shabby Apple is one of those shops that I just can't get enough of.  I love EVERY SINGLE THING in there. Ever since I found their shop, I find myself browsing almost daily! 

If I had an unlimited supply of money, I would probably buy every single thing in there.  Until then, I love looking at their beautiful dresses, skirts, jewelry.  These are just some of my favorites:

Side Saddle Dress
Jardin Dress
Sequoia Dress

Aren't they all beautiful?  Of course I can't disappoint my readers, so Shabby Apple is going to give one of my readers their choice of the following pieces of jewelry:

Poker Face Alice Bracelet

The White  Rabbit's Time Keeper


Monday, December 19, 2011

I'm here.

I am sorry I have not posted in a while.  I am taking a few days to get myself together before Christmas.  AND I'm off for two weeks!  Which means I will be busy with Jack.

I'll be posting later this week, I hope your week before Christmas is going smoother than mine!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Fill in the Blank Friday...

1.   My most favorite "little thing" is     I love my drive to work. I listen to my music, I listen to the news and I drink my coffee .

2.   I give anything to   go on a trip to Europe     .

3.  I can't believe    that another year has gone by and the holiday's are here.  Time is moving too fast    .

4. The one thing I'd like to achieve today is    addressing all my Christmas cards, and wrapping some gifts    .

5.  The last thing I want to do today is    workout.  It's one of those days  .

6.  If I were writing my own blank today, it would say:   If I were a holiday song I would be..........   .

7.  My favorite candle scent is    ..there are so many, but I love Toasted  Marshmallow from Bath and Body works. .

Have a great weekend.  I am off for two week!!!!! What are your plans this weekend?

Join me and fill in your own blanks here

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The easiest holiday snack you will ever make....

I used to love making these complex meals and desserts that took hours to prepare, cook and serve.  It made me feel like I was a wife; you know, like a real one.

Things changed, and now I'm all about recipes being easy and quick.  This is holiday fav is at the top of my easy and quick list, and I am pretty sure it will bring you right up to the top of Santa's nice list.

This is perfect for all of those holiday parties you have to go to, and even makes cute little gifts for co-workers or friends!

I don't know the name of this recipe, so I will call them "Holiday Pretzels with Chocolate"

All you need is the following:

Waffle shaped pretzels
Hershey Kisses (I used peppermint and chocolate)

  1. 1. Heat the oven to 170F. Set a number of bite-size, waffle-shaped pretzels (one for each treat) in a single layer on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, then top each pretzel with an unwrapped Hershey's Kiss or Hershey's Hug.

  2. 2. Bake for 4 to 6 minutes (the white chocolate will melt more quickly), until the chocolates feel soft when touched with a wooden spoon. Remove the cookie sheet from the oven and quickly press an M&M's candy into the center of each Kiss.

  3. 3. Allow the treats to cool for a few minutes, then place them in the refrigerator to set, about 10 minutes. Place handfuls of the candies in clear plastic bags and tie on colorful ribbons.

I would love to hear from you about your favorite holiday snacks!  I am always looking for new ideas!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

New Winners.....

Hope you all are having a great week!

So 3 of my winners never contacted me, which means, I have 3 new winners to announce!

Charm Design:  #4 Celeste

Scentsy: #30 Kelly H

Back Porch Shoppe: #7 Kim K

Congrats! Please contact me at to claim your prize within 24 hours!

Have a great Tuesday...the Christmas countdown is on!!!!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Working Mom Meals....Skirt Steak Salad

So I am not a food photographer...I'm okay with that.  What I can do is follow a recipe and make a pretty good meal.  That's what I did this weekend, thanks to my favorite foodie blog Smitten Kitchen.

My husband swears this tastes like something you would get at a fancy steak restaurant, and I think I agree.  The skirt steak, blue cheese, and dressing go perfectly together and the it takes no time to prepare.  

In fact, I think skirt steak is my new best friend.  

Do yourself a favor, and try this recipe.  I promise you won't be disappointed.

Skirt Steak with Arugula and Blue Cheese

Serves 4

*1 pound skirt steak, trimmed of excess fat if necessary, halved crosswise, at room temperature
*1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
*1 pint (2 cups) cherry tomatoes, halved
*1/2 cup (about 4 ounces) crumbled blue cheese
*1/2 pound baby arugula
*Vinaigrette (below)
*3 tablespoons finely chopped red onion, for garnish

Pat steak dry and season on both sides 1/2 teaspoon salt and many grinds of black pepper.

In a cast-iron skillet: Heat skillet on medium-high to high and add olive oil. When oil begins to shimmer, place steak in skillet and do not move it for 5 minutes. Turn it once, and cook for another 3 minutes for medium-rare. You may need to cook your steak halves separately, depending on the size of your pan.
On a grill: Prepare grill for direct-heat cooking over hot charcoal or high heat for gas. Oil grill rack, then grill steak, covered only if using a gas grill, turning once, 4 to 6 minutes total for medium-rare.
Transfer steak to a cutting board and let rest, loosely covered with foil, for five minutes. Arrange arugula on a large platter. Thinly slice steak on the diagonal, across the grain. Arrange over arugula, then toss halved cherry tomatoes and blue cheese over platter. Add vinaigrette to taste, then sprinkle with red onion. Serve with additional vinaigrette on the side.

Steakhouse Mustard Vinaigrette
1 tablespoon coarse Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon honey
1/3 cup olive oil
Whisk ingredients. Season with salt and pepper and adjust ingredients to taste (usually more Dijon and vinegar for me).


Sunday, December 11, 2011

Santa Claus is coming to town.......with some winners!

That's right, the time has come.  I have 12 lucky winners to announce.

Please email me within 24 hours to 


Thank you again to everyone who entered.  I appreciate and every single one of you and hope you continue to read.  Also thank you the fab shops who participated, please be sure to check them all out if you haven't yet.

Day 1: Artwark Acorn Necklace ......#23 Christyn McK
       Charm Design Clutch........ #25 Chrissy B

Day 2: Fancy Prints 8 x 10 .........#53 Lauren C
       From the Red Kitchen........#10 Ann 

Day 3: Kindy Garden print......#39 Jacklyn J

Day 4: Scentsy $15 credit.....#112 Sara F.

Day 5: O.C. Styles blingz or card holder.......#23 Jessica J

Day 6: Back Porch Shoppe ornament.....#30 Tabitha
       Ring Around the Rosies shop credit........#24 Shanda

Day 7: Say your Piece ornament........#44 Courtenay W.

Day 8: Beau and Stella necklace....#5 Connie 

Day 9: Disco Belly Tee......#14 Brittney M

Day 10: My Belle Boutique credit.......#22 Nichole

Day 11: Pumpkin and Butterfly.....#15 Stacey B

Day 12: Kranky Krab.....#22 Kate B

Friday, December 9, 2011

Fill in the blanks Friday!

1.   Love is     what it all comes down to  .

2.   Being in love feels like   a nice cozy blanket    .

4. The most important thing in a relationship is    loyalty    .

5.  A "deal breaker" for me in a relationship is    giving up  .

6.  The way I show love in my relationships is   the little everyday things  .

7.  I love    my family  .

Have a great Friday!!!