November 30, 2012
Do you ever come across desserts that surprise you?
Now, I'm not usually surprised when I come across sugary concoctions. I've been
blessed cursed with a sweet tooth that pretty much makes me salivate over any sweet treat you put in my face.
However, once in a while, a certain dessert just happens to taste so much better than I imagined. Like this Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake with an Oreo crust.
My brother-in-law's girlfriend Liz, brought this amazing treat to our Thanksgiving meal last week. A layer of spiced pumpkin goodness, layered on top of creamy cheesecake, on top of a sweet, chunky Oreo crust that just makes every bite better and better.
This is greatness people. Try it, your hips will hate you but your lips will love you!
Disclaimer: Liz put all the hard work that went into making this deliciousness. I totally took advantage of her efforts and snapped a few picks to use for sharing this treat with you guys. I couldn't trust myself to make an entire cheesecake and have it sitting around the house. There's only so much self control a girl can have!
Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake
(recipe from Girl Meets Bowl)
Yield: 8 servings Printable Recipe
2 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, softened
1 (14 oz) can condensed milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp maple syrup (the real stuff people)
1 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cloves
2 sleeves Oreo's (crushed into crumbs)
4-6 tbsp butter, melted
For the crust: Combine crumbs and butter and press into a 9” springform pan. Press a little up the sides of the pan and then wrap the bottom in foil, so you can catch all that great caramelized butter that leaks through.
For the filling: Combine cream cheese, condensed milk, vanilla and syrup. Beat until smooth. Blend in eggs one at a time. Remove 1 1/2 cup of batter and spread into bottom of crust; set aside. Add pumpkin, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg to the remaining batter and stir gently until well blended. Carefully spread over the batter in the crust.
Preheat oven to 325 F. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until center is almost set. Turn oven off, open door, and let the cheesecake just chill out in the oven for awhile. Once cool, refrigerate at least overnight. Tastes even better if you wait a few days.
November 28, 2012
Do you like cranberries? I think they're one of those love 'em or hate 'em foods. For me, I can't have a holiday meal without my precious cranberry sauce.
There's just something about the sweetness mixed with the tart, that makes each bite of turkey, stuffing, and whatever else you have piled on your plate, taste infinitely better.
In my humble opinion at least. I even sneak into the fridge to grab spoonfuls of the sauce - all on it's own. That's my relationship with cranberry sauce.
Anyway, enough about my love of sauce - the cranberry kind.
I also love cranberries in my desserts, and when I came across this Tasty Kitchen recipe for Cranberry Orange Bars, I just had to give them a try. I love how simple they are, and with just a few ingredients, you can have a great dessert to add to your holiday meal in no time. This also a great way to use up any leftover cranberry sauce you have from your turkey day meal!
You can snag the printable recipe and see my full post over on the Tasty Kitchen blog. So go check it out!
What's your favorite Thanksgiving leftover? Leave a comment below and let me know. :)
November 23, 2012
I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving meal. Mine was full of waaaay too much good food, followed by promises to myself that I would never eat again, which were quickly broken by stealthy trips to the kitchen to pilfer leftovers.
One of my favorite leftovers to eat, is this sweet potato casserole that has been a part of Thanksgiving that dates waaaay back into my childhood.
Of course, when I left home it was one of "those" recipes that I just had to take with me. Thanksgiving just isn't the same without sweet potato casserole.
This casserole is full of perfectly fluffy sweet potatoes, topped with the best crunchy sweet pecan streusel topping. We're not re-inventing the wheel here, many of you have probably had this recipe in some form another. But every year I say, "I need to share my mom's sweet potato casserole."
So here it is.
Mom's Sweet Potato Casserole
serves: 8 Printable Recipe
3 cups mashed sweet potatoes (about 3-4 medium potatoes)
1/2 cup melted butter
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
3/4 cup brown sugar
5 tbsp flour
5 tbsp flour
5 tbsp butter, softened
3/4 cup pecans, chopped
Preheat oven to 400F. Place potatoes on a baking sheet and roast until soft, about 45-60 minutes. When potatoes are done, remove from oven and allow to cool for a few minutes. Remove skin from the potatoes, and slice into chunks.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, place the potato chunks, melted butter and sugar. Whip until combined and potatoes are smooth. Add the eggs, vanilla and almond extracts.
In a medium bowl, combine the brown sugar and flour. Using a fork, cut in the softened butter until well mixed. Stir in the chopped pecans until well combined.
Pour the potato mixture into a greased 9x9 baking dish. Sprinkle the streusel topping evenly over the potatoes. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until potatoes are heated through and topping is lightly golden.
Recipe Notes: This casserole can be made up ahead, and stored in the refrigerator before baking. Just pop in the oven and bake as directed. The topping will make more than you need, I always like to make extra so I don't have to skimp on the good stuff.
November 20, 2012
You know what? November has sucked...big time. I know we're supposed to be feeling all warm and fuzzy and thankful this month, but circumstances sure are making it hard for me to remember that.
Have you noticed that Sprinkled With Flour seems to have disappeared off the face of the planet? That's because I've lost my old domain name (http://www.sprinkledwithflour), which expired while I was absent with my medical issues and miscarriage. It was auctioned off in the blink of an eye, and purchased by another domain company who has yet to respond to my email asking them if I can have it back.
So in the meantime, I've had to register a completely new domain name, which changes my site URL from http://www.sprinkledwithflour.com to http://www.sprinklewithflour.com. At least it's not too different. The major change is that by changing my domain name, I have lost ALL of my old referred traffic and Google rankings. In the eyes of Google, I might as well be a brand new blog, at least until the new URL has had time to get ranked.
At least I still have my Facebook and Twitter pages to direct people to the new URL. So if you're not already a Facebook Fan, please head over there and get connected, then you'll always know where I'm at! :)
I'm in the process of trying to update the new site in as many places as I can. Foodgawker was able to do one switch that updated all of my old submissions to the correct link. Unfortunately, any pins on Pinterest are linked to the old site, so I'm having to start from scratch there too.
So the moral of the story? If you have a custom domain name, make sure you renew in plenty of time to allow for any issues that may arise. Otherwise you risk loosing everything you've worked hard to build up.
Note: I am still Sprinkled With Flour, the only thing that's changed is the URL for my blog. Here's to hoping that company will give me back my domain name. Grrr.
SPECIAL REQUEST, PRETTY PLEASE1. If you have Sprinkled With Flour listed in a blogroll on your blog, would you mind updating the link to the correct site?
2. If you have recently linked to a recipe on my blog, would you also update the link to the correct site?
3. If you're not already a Facebook fan or Twitter follower, use the pretty links in the side bar to get connected with me. Then you'll never loose me again! :)
4. If you feel like it, a quick shout out on Twitter or Facebook, letting people know that I haven't disappeared and where they can find my new site would be GREATLY appreciated. I would totally come to your house and do all of your laundry for the next 6 months if I could. It's the thought that counts....right?
If you can do any of this, I would be so grateful!
November 13, 2012
Warning: This post will be full of raw, honest feelings on the loss of our child. If you don't want to read this type of material today, or are here simply for a recipe, I suggest you skip to the bottom.
This is a hard post for me to write. My last one was filling you in on my pregnancy and the complications I'd been dealing with. Today I have to share that my baby was born into the arms of Jesus last week.
When I went for my 14 week checkup, the doctor wasn't able to find the heartbeat with her doppler, so we went into the next room to check things with an ultrasound. As soon as I saw the monitor and heard the deafening silence, I knew my baby had died, but I still kept praying, "Please God, let her find a heartbeat. Please God." As the doctor turned to me and whispered, "Amber, I'm so sorry." I already knew my baby was gone.
I was scheduled for a D&C the next day, and though having to go through the rest of the day knowing my baby was dead inside of me was hard, waking up from surgery feeling that emptiness was harder.
Miscarriage. It's something that can seem so common, but until you live it, you never know what you've lost. I may not have held my baby in my arms, or created memories together, but I carried the hopes and dreams of what the future was supposed to hold - with this particular baby - in my heart. That is what I have lost.
I've lost the chance to learn this child's personality, to know the contours of their face like the back of my hand, or feel the comfort of their small hand grasping my own. This is more than a setback in the plans for our family. We lost a child. A child that was unique and will never be replaced by another. If I'm being honest, I may not even have the chance to try again. My pregnancies are so difficult on my body and my family, it takes a lot of careful planning and consideration to decide if it's something we can go through again.
I'm hoping, given time, that I'll have the opportunity to give my son a sibling, and know the joy of snuggling a soft, downy head again. Until then, I'm focusing on healing my body from the months of malnutrition, and giving my son all the hugs and attention I wasn't able to give him these past few months. I'm getting a great start with this delicious soup my sister-in-law made for me while I was recovering, which is a recipe of her friend Victoria Costilla. I was so lucky to have her there helping me, I cannot give her enough praise - thank you Christel!
This soup is full of vitamin C veggies and vitamin E from the brown rice. Did I mention it tastes great? And while it does have jalapenos in it, it's not too spicy at all.
Chicken Jalapeno & Rice Soup3-4 cups water
Yield: 9-10 servings Printable Recipe
(recipe courtesy of Victoria Costilla)
Yield: 9-10 servings Printable Recipe
(recipe courtesy of Victoria Costilla)
2 chicken breasts with bone (or meat from a rotisserie chicken)
3-4 chicken tenderloins (not needed if using rotisserie chicken)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 onion, diced
7-8 cups chicken broth
1 cup brown rice, uncooked
3 stalks celery, sliced
3 carrots, sliced
1/2 head cabbage, thinly sliced
2 cups frozen green beans
1 cup water
1-2 fresh jalapenos
1/2 tbsp black pepper
pinch of salt (to taste)
cayenne pepper powder
Combine 3-4 cups water and the chicken breasts and tenderloins, cook until the meat falls off the bone, about 1-2 hours. Turn down the heat, remove from heat and shred chicken with a fork. Alternatively, you can use the meat from a rotisserie chicken to save time. Return to stovetop and add the following: garlic, onion, chicken broth and brown rice. Cook until rice is soft and cooked through. Add celery, carrots, cabbage and green beans. Cook until veggies are semi-soft.
While soup is cooking, using a blender, blend one cup of water with the fresh jalapenos. Add the blended sauce to the soup. Cook about 10 minutes longer, adding more water if necessary until you reach desired consistency. The soup will thicken once the rice is cooked.
Before serving, remove any bones, garnish with cayenne pepper, salt and fresh squeezed lemon or lime. This soup freezes really well, and can be frozen in single one cup servings for reheating later.
My husband wrote a letter to our baby that he posted on his facebook page last week. He's a typical man, and rarely expresses himself verbally, but his heartfelt words struck a chord in me, and I wanted to share it with you since we're entering the month of giving thanks. You can read his letter below.
A Letter To Our Baby
"To my child,
I want to take a moment to tell you about your family. You have a brother Cade. He is awesome, he has the biggest heart of any person I know, and loves harder than any brother you will ever have! He is your protector and he will take great pride in that job. You have a Mom and Dad that love you to no end. We will never forget you and look forward to the day we see you and hold you.
A part of me says I am glad you did not have to experience this world as it can be a cruel place. That being said, I would die this very second if it meant you could experience the love that you have with this family. I would die this instance, if it meant Cade could hold you in his arms and kiss your forehead. I LOVE YOU! and will celebrate you everyday of my life.
I question why you were taken from us. This I may never know. I do know that this emotional storm will pass, the scars will heal, and ours days will go on.
To those reading this, I encourage you the next time you feel like you are having a bad day, stop and think about the things you do have in your life. Don't think about the things that you want, you can't lose those. However, you can lose the things you have, so be thankful and protect the things you hold close to your heart."
I think this is good advice for us all this Thanksgiving. :)