Thanksgiving 2013

Who went out shopping this morning for Black Friday?  I have gone out the past few years really early but didn’t this year.  I did go to Kohl’s this afternoon for a toy and walked right out.  The line was wrapped all the way around the store.  At 1:00 pm!  I would rather spend the extra money and not spend over an hour in line.

Anyway, let’s recap Thanksgiving!  This is the third year that we hosted and it was a success.  Matt primarily does the cooking for the main meal, especially when it comes to the turkey.  And although I may not cook the main meal, I search for the recipes that we will use.  However, I do take care of the appetizer and desserts.  My two favorite things to make.

So let’s start with the appetizer.  I made a baked BLT dip.  I found this recipe from Betty Crocker, made by The Girl Who Ate Everything.


IMG_5069As part of the Thanksgiving meal, we had sour cream and onion mashed potatoes by Glutenista.

IMG_5062I don’t know if mashed potatoes would ever look nice in a picture…

For one of the vegetables, we had green beans.  I saw a recipe for cheese sauce on an episode of Trisha’s Southern Kitchen on Food Network. Any vegetable tastes better with cheese!


IMG_5071And then of course, there is the dessert.  I made Joy the Baker’s Pumpkin Cream Pie.  Yum!!!


IMG_5073After we finished at our house, we headed to my aunt and uncle’s for more dessert.  I made Averie Cooks’ loaded M&M oreo cookie bars to bring.  My version has peanut butter oreos and peanut butter m&ms.


IMG_5052Because there were so many desserts at my aunt and uncle’s, I was asked to bring them home.  I was happy to!

Choosing recipes for Thanksgiving, I looked for ones that are simple.  There is no time for complicated or involved recipes on Thanksgiving because there is so much going on.

From the food to the company, it was a great day!  Bring on Christmas now!!!


Pumpkin Bundt Cake with Cinnamon Glaze

A few weeks ago, we had the first “fall like” day.  A beautiful sunny day with temperatures in the low 70’s.  What does that mean?  It means it is time for fall baking.  This is one of my favorite things about the season.  I can’t get enough of making pumpkin and apple desserts.

An upcoming Sundays with Joy recipe is Pumpkin Bundt Cake with Cinnamon Glaze by Joy the Baker.  Although it is not due to be made until mid-October, it seemed like the perfect first recipe to make for the fall season.  So on that beautiful first “fall like” day, I took advantage of both kids sleeping.  I was actually able to bake something from start to finish without any interruptions.  This never happens!


This cake comes together so quickly.  And the best part about it is all of the wonderful spices that go into it, including cloves, nutmeg, ginger, and cinnamon.  Nothing but the smells of fall!

A cinnamon glaze tops off the cake.  The recipe indicates that you should drizzle the glaze over the cake.  I could not get it thin enough to drizzle so I spread it like a frosting.




I love how the frosting looks on the cake.  Makes it look somewhat fancy :).


And this is another cake, like this Browned Butter Glazed Banana Cake, that could be eaten for breakfast or as a dessert.  It also pairs well with a hot cup of coffee!



If you want to make this amazing cake, you can find the recipe in the Joy the Baker Cookbook.

Now that I have a pumpkin recipe done, it is time to make an apple one.  I am not sure which I like more, pumpkin or apple.  What is your favorite???




Strawberry Rhubarb Crumb Pie

Recipes for strawberries and rhubarb are popping up everywhere. I have made a number of recipes with strawberries, but never rhubarb. And never a recipe with the combination of both. In our garden, we have a fairly large rhubarb plant that has existed since before moving in. It is the only plant that we know is always going to grow.  Joy the Baker recently posted a recipe for Strawberry Rhubarb Crumb Pie that looked amazing. I knew this was the recipe for my first time baking with rhubarb. I made this pie before I went strawberry picking but purchased them from Mann Orchards Farm Stand and Bakery so they were local.


Now I find making pie crust very intimidating. Making the dough usually goes ok, especially with this recipe. It is very simple and came together great.

IMG_3836      IMG_3837  IMG_3838      IMG_3839

However, something seems to always go wrong when I am rolling the pie crust or trying to put it in the pie plate. My confidence with this did increase a tad when I took a pie baking class with Joy the Baker at King Arthur Flour. I didn’t have a problem with it this time though!  The only thing I didn’t like was the dough was just a little too small to make it look all fancy around the edges. I should have rolled it out just a smidge more.

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Look at how yummy!  Now for the crumb topping and it is ready to go…


I am so happy at how this came out!  It did not burn and the filling did not overflow out of the dish.  That never happens!


I made some fresh whipped cream to top it off.  To make the whipped cream, I don’t follow a recipe anymore.  I had just under a pint of heavy cream so I whipped it up with a couple of tablespoons of confectioners’ sugar and a dash of vanilla extract.

My favorite part about this pie is the crust and the crumble topping.  I know, what about the filling???  Yes, it was all very good!  Don’t forget to check out the recipe here and give it a try!