30 November 2013

Dennys Food and Recipes: Turkey Cooking Tips: How Good Is Your Holiday Roast Turkey?

U.S. President Barack Obama pardons "Popcorn" with his daughters Sasha and Malia at the White House, Nov. 27, 2013.
Dennys Food and Recipes: Turkey Cooking Tips: How Good Is Your Holiday Roast Turkey?:
From Denny:  Roasted my Thanksgiving turkey a day early.  Sure beats stressing on the Big Day.  Also, my husband, affectionately known as "Satan" misses out on trying to micro-manage the cooking, driving me absolutely crazy.  He never did learn to cook but thinks he knows how to tell you all about how to do it anyway.  Getting the Big Bird done a day early is a win-win for everyone as he was less stressed just as much as me!

Though he did try only twice this season to be ever so irritating:  once, when taste testing the fabulous gravy he made The Yuck! Face but could not keep his composure for long, laughed, and then raved about it as one of the best yet.  Later he decided he just had to tell me how to cut the French bread for sandwiches his way rather than the normal slices I was doing for hot garlic bread, his favorite.  Since I'm basically The Spatial Engineer in this house (just ask me to pack a car for travel and I am The Expert on finding every nook and cranny to fill) I explained to him how his way made no sense but cut a few slices for him anyway.  He was so disappointed to realize I was right after all.  "Satan" lost that round.  Never a dull moment at our house, that's for sure!

Hey, we should all be challenging the White House chef to a Roast Turkey Cook Off.  Bet mine is one of  The Best!  We love spices at our house and every year I create something different.  This year's wet rub spices were swimming in clarified butter:  sea salt, black pepper, garlic powder, smokey paprika, cumin, curry powder, marjoram leaves, lite sodium soy sauce, Moscato wine and Remy Martin cognac...

Santa Jingle Kid's All Over Print T-Shirt

Make some merry this holiday season! Jingle Jingle!

14 AWESOME COFFEE & TEA TIME DESIGNS - teapots, serving trays, cocktail plates and platters, mugs!

Inside the White House Holidays - great video and the White House Gingerbread House too!

20 November 2013

Holiday Appetizer From Chef Grant Actatz: Sweet Potato Toppers

Chef Grant Actatz's Sweet Potato Toppers

From Denny:  This is a sweet appetizer to enjoy for the holiday season while the turkey is roasting.  Because it is sweet potato it will hold over those rumbling stomachs waiting for the feast.

This appetizer is so simple as it is a sweetened whipping cream and sweet potato mixture topped off with bourbon soaked raisins rolled in spices like cinnamon and ginger with a bit of brown sugar.

With the cracker of your choice (make sure it is strong enough to hold this mixture as sweet potatoes are heavy) just spread with the back of a spoon - or pipe like icing - some of the sweet potato mixture onto the cracker.  Then place the bourbon soaked and spice-sugar rolled raisins on top all in a row.  Simple, easy and serve immediately!

Nutrition facts follow after recipe.  Good news:  very low in sodium per serving.

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Just LOVE is the shortest best message!

19 November 2013

Holiday Cake: Chocolate Chip Gingerbread

Chocolate Chip Gingerbread

From Denny:  Would this make a beautiful holiday food gift or what?  Who doesn't like chocolate or gingerbread during the holiday season?  The winter white vanilla glaze gives a strong visual contrast for presentation.  We do eat with our eyes...

This beautiful cake would be great for those holiday gatherings to beautify the dessert table.  Come on; if you are able to slightly warm the servings, melting the chocolate chips, then one whiff of that gingerbread and chocolate and this cake will go fast!

Santa Jingle Picture Ornament

Make some merry this holiday season! Jingle Jingle! This design also available in teapots, cocktail platters, serving trays, lots of bedding, area rugs, blankets, pajamas, pillows, clocks and so much more; come see!

18 November 2013

Healthy Chef Recipe: Yam Chocolate Spice Bars

Yam Chocolate Spice BarsFrom Denny:  Here's an interesting twist for the holidays - chocolate chips in your yams!  This is a quick recipe utilizing a spice cake mix, canned sweet potatoes, chocolate chips, real butter and reduced-fat cream cheese to create a delectable but easy to make dessert!

This recipe comes from Holly Clegg who has been a celebrity in Louisiana from some time now.  Why?  She was on the cutting edge of the food trends to reduce calories in our favorite comfort foods while adding nutrition.

Holly's father suffers from arthritis and she has developed a book of recipes to help those with arthritis reduce inflammation through food choices (think watermelon and sweet potatoes).  Holly also has a book on diabetes recipes.  Her mind is always thinking of healthier ways to trim, substitute or re-think our favorite recipes for modern times and health needs.

Louisiana yams and sweet potatoes are quite popular in our state so the local chefs are constantly thinking of new ways to include these vitamin A and vitamin C packed veggies into our everyday diet.  Holly also suggests this recipe is a good way to use up leftover sweet potatoes.

Vintage Bicycle Cookie Jar

Vintage Bicycle, a curious blast from the past, to warmly decorate the present. This design also available in flour and sugar containers, and teapots, cocktail plates, platters, serving trays and bedding, pillows, shower curtain, clocks, area rugs and more!

14 November 2013

Holiday Cookie: Chocolate Bon-Bon Drops

Recipe photo

From Denny:  These are simple chocolate cookies that your kids could help you make.  You roll the dough into small balls before placing on the cookie sheet.  Little hands love to do fun projects like rolling cookie dough.  The trick is to keep them from stuffing the raw dough into their mouths! :)

These easy cookies are deep-chocolate rich, topped off with a very sweet vanilla glaze.  For the holidays you could top them with a Hershey's chocolate kiss or a bright red cherry or other holiday decoration to dress up the cookie tray.  Better yet, give them away as a holiday food gift and become the favorite friend and relative for life!

Included are reviews of bakers who tried this recipe.  Since I enjoy reading them I thought you might too.

Celebrate Dark Chocolate Queen Duvet

Celebrate Dark Chocolate Queen Duvet

13 November 2013

Holiday Recipe: Frozen Grasshopper Pie

From Denny:  This retro recipe is a blast from the past - with updates!  The decade of the 1950's sported the food trend of frozen desserts, especially for entertaining and the holidays.

Historically, it was in the 1950's when freezers were first mass manufactured as separate from refrigerators.  This new appliance trend created some serious creativity in the cooking arena with frozen desserts offered.

This Christmas holiday favorite has survived the test of time, in this decade with a couple of tweaks as options for ingredient substitutions - like frozen yogurt or reduced-fat ice cream for the original full fat ice cream in the filling.  Using canola oil reduces the saturated fat in the original crust that used butter - later in the 1960's and 1970's it was worse, using solid shortening like Crisco for the crust.

Basically, this is a type of frozen mint ice cream pie with a delicious chocolate cookie wafer or chocolate graham cracker crust.  It's a very easy recipe to make which also makes it a big hit.  This recipe is an easy one for beginners.

Celebrate Chocolate Queen Duvet

Celebrate Chocolate every day as a holiday!

12 November 2013

Holiday Cookie: Rocky Road Bars

Recipe photo

From Denny:  Rocky road is a favorite flavor combination for everything from ice cream to fudge to cake to cookies.  If you like rocky road and shortbread then this bar cookie is for you!  This is a rich little cookie that is just perfect for the holidays or birthday celebrations.

The beauty of this cookie is that you can make ahead and store in the fridge or even freeze it.  A good recipe for taking to holiday gatherings but one you can make at your convenience when you have the time.  Included are some reviews of the recipe from home bakers.  I always like to see what other people think about a recipe and check out any fresh ideas for different twists of ingredients or presentation.  This King Arthur Flour recipe database has been fun to explore!

Calligraphy Bird Thank You Greeting Cards (10 pck)

Elegant calligraphy scroll design decorates this awesome card! Great for sending out those treasured personal snail mail notes people love to receive after the holiday season.

11 November 2013

Holiday Recipe: Chocolate Gingerbread Cookies

Recipe photo

From Denny:  Do you love gingerbread?  Here's a chance to make a smaller version in cookie form to delight your friends, family and guests at holiday gatherings.  The beauty of this cookie recipe is that it's a wonderful surprise of gingerbread combined with chocolate! 

If your local store doesn't carry the Swedish pearl sugar then just dust with regular refined sugar or some sprinkles.  This recipe is a fun twist on the holiday favorite of gingerbread from King Arthur Flour.  Also, left in their links to various ingredients and products they sell on the site for you to check out if you wish.  What I enjoyed most was reading the many reviews which I thought you would find useful too.

Santa Jingle Clutch Bag

Make some merry this holiday season! Jingle Jingle!

09 November 2013

Decadent Chocolate Recipe: Chocolate Brownie Sundae

Photo by Cynthia L. NoblesThe Chocolate Brownie Sundae is a decadent combo of a souffle-like brownie served warm, ice cream and homemade chocolate sauce.
Photo: Cynthia L. Nobles/The Advocate newspaper, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

From Denny:  Love brownies and vanilla ice cream?  Enjoy this brownie that is so much like a chocolate souffle and serve it warm with melting ice cream, smothered in a homemade chocolate sauce.  There is a lot of chocolate in this recipe, so stock up before the world chocolate prices go up! This is a dessert that would appeal for entertaining during the holidays, making you their favorite relative! 

Merry Christmas Star Earring Circle Charm

Santa hat decks out Merry Christmas greeting on Christmas star

07 November 2013

Easy Holiday Recipe: Daydream Dessert of Cake, Ice Cream, Slow-Cooked Apple Topping

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNISChoose your favorite dessert ingredients and toss into a slow cooker for your own Daydream Dessert. This one is made with apples, coconut and almonds and served over ice cream.
Photo: Patrick Dennis/The Advocate newspaper, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

From Denny:  This is an easy recipe to throw together when you are pressed for time or too tired to make something more elaborate.  The slow cooker crock is to the rescue.  Make this easy topping - which only takes a couple of hours to cook on Low on its own - while you prepare dinner and get the kids organized for school the next day or help with homework.

Remember strawberry shortcake every summer and how easy it is to put together in a snap?  Well, this recipe is just as easy.  While the slow cooker does its work just hop on over to the grocery store and pick up those same pre-made individual sponge cakes and your favorite vanilla ice cream.  

This simple cooked topping involves only two apples, a handful of coconut, a small handful of sliced almonds, butter and brown sugar.  Serve on your most decorative dessert plate.  Build with a foundation of an individual sponge cake, a generous dollop of vanilla ice cream and then topped with the hot apple-coconut topping.  Garnish with more almonds and sprinkle with coconut...

Plum Swirls Clasp Wallet

Check out these joyful noodle swirls trimmed out in plum for a chilled attitude!

06 November 2013

Fast Holiday Candy Recipe: Pecan-Raisin Clusters

Photo by Cynthia L. Nobles  --  Raisin-Pecan Clusters
Photo by Cynthia L. Nobles
From Denny:  Talk about a simple recipe that is fast to create!  Perfect for holiday entertaining this little gem of a recipe comes from Cynthia L. Nobles and it was featured in our local Louisiana newspaper a couple of months ago.  Of course, I quickly recognized it's worth as a recipe perfect for the holidays, whether it's gift-giving or entertaining the friends and relatives! :) 

Do you have a little leftover morning coffee?  This recipe uses up a few tablespoons of it so no need to throw it out after all.  I mean, really, when you can make a chocolate recipe with some leftover morning coffee who said being frugal couldn't be fun and tasty?...

Santa Music Round Compact Mirror

Santa Music Round Compact Mirror

05 November 2013

Cookies: Coconut-Almond Macaroons

Advocate staff photo by ARTHUR D. LAUCK  --  Guests will be asking for more when you serve Coconut-Almond Macaroons.
Photo:  Arthur D. Lauck/The Advocate, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

From Denny:  Raise your hand if you enjoy coconut macaroons.  Yeah, me too!  They make some stellar ones on their seasonal menu, dipped in the best dark chocolate, over at the French restaurant bistro chain, La Madeleine.  

But if you can't get ones as good as theirs locally, and the ones at the grocery store leave you yawning, well, make them yourself!  These lovely cookies are easy to make.

Yet another easy recipe from my local Louisiana newspaper, The Advocate.  They have an award-winning food section as Louisiana people love to cook and share our recipes for publication, especially when it comes to tail-gating season and the holidays...

Happy Holidays Poinsettia Greeting Cards (20 pack)

Christmas poinsettia vintage design updated in soft winter pales with Happy Holidays greeting suitable for the holiday season!

04 November 2013

3 Tasty Persimmon Recipes: Bread, Cake, Pudding, Persimmon Facts

From Denny:  Persimmons.  Look forward to these every year when they are in season?  Just when you start to forget they exist, then, suddenly they show up in the grocery store.  Pretty much the story of our lives as there is so much abundance around us in the harvest time.  That sends you hurriedly searching yet again for a great persimmon recipe. So, you end up here at this food blog, right? :)

Seriously, these great recipes were recently featured in our local newspaper by an avid persimmon grower with a beautiful persimmon tree in her Louisiana yard, offering great advice on growing and cooking persimmons.  One tree yields a lot of yummy tasty treats to enjoy baking into awesome goodness!  This year her persimmon tree almost broke her record; it produced over 1,500 persimmons.

After a record amount one year, the persimmon tree will take a break next year and produce less.  After harvest, prune the house high tree because you will want it to branch out as much as possible.  Pruning is what keeps a tree producing a lot and prolongs its life for many years.  It's often difficult to reach the fruit at the top of tree so just leave it as food for your neighborhood birds.  They will be sure to thank you!...

Celebrate Chocolate iPhone 5 Case

Celebrate Chocolate every day as a holiday!

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