Monday, November 29, 2010

White Hot Chocolate

Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving... We sure did! We got a chance to spend some quality time with both sides of our family and we ate a TON of good food. I already gave you my favorite pie crust recipe so today, I thought I would give you a great recipe that I recently found for hot chocolate.

A few weeks ago, Evan and I had our community group (small group from church) over to our house. I made Paula Deen's "White Hot Chocolate" and set up a "hot chocolate bar" complete with dark chocolate shavings, crushed peppermints, mint leaves, marshmallows and whipped cream. It was really fun and the recipe is definitely a keeper! :)

White Hot Chocolate

Ingredients:
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup heavy cream
4 cups half and half
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:
In medium saucepan, over medium heat, combine white chocolate chips and heavy cream. Stir continuously until white chocolate chips have completely melted. Stir in half and half and vanilla extract. Stir continuously until heated through. Pour into mugs and serve.

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In addition to our two Thanksgiving celebrations and a little black Friday shopping, we also cut down our Christmas tree this past weekend! Here are a few pictures from our time at the Christmas tree farm! :)


Cheers ;)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

My Thanksgiving Essential

Let's ignore the fact that I basically haven't blogged in the month of November and skip straight to the good news... Thanksgiving is tomorrow!! Over the years, my family has celebrated Thanksgiving in different locations, with different people and with different dishes on the menu but one thing is always certain... there will be pie! We make homemade pies with homemade pie crust and though it's a little extra work, it's totally worth it! :)

My recipe for pie crust is a recipe that my mom saved from a home economics class when she was in high school. This recipe is really special to me because we've been making pies together (with this recipe) since I was a little girl. She would ALWAYS let me make my own little pie and even though it was never edible, we would always bake it and pretend like it was! :) Now that I'm married, I make pies at my house and she makes pies at her house and we take them to my grandparents' house for Thanksgiving but we always talk on the phone while we are baking... because this recipe can be frustrating and always calls for a little moral support! haha

Mom's Pie Crust

Ingredients:
2 1/4 cups sifted flour
1 t. salt
3/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup water

Directions:
Sift flour and salt into a mixing bowl. Take out 1/3 cup of flour and mix with 1/4 cup of water to form a paste. Cut shortening into remaining flour until shortening is the size of peas. Add the flour paste and mix until well blended. Wrap in wax paper and chill for 20 minutes. Divide dough- place half on floured board to roll out. Roll out with short, light strokes- away from the center toward the edge to 1/8 inch thickness. Fold in fourths and lift to pie plate. Unfold. Pierce dough with fork in several places. Fill with filling and bake according to the directions on your filling recipe of choice.

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What are the Thanksgiving essentials at your house?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Halloween, Razorbacks and Cookies

We had a such a fun weekend!!! Here are few of the highlights:

On Friday, I went with my mom, grandma, Jack and Millie to my Aunt June's nursing home for a Halloween party. I told you that Aunt June was going to dress up as Miss America but she decided that she wasn't really in the mood to dress up on the day of the party! I also told you that Jack was going to be Super Man and Millie was going to be a ladybug... which actually did happen... and they were PRECIOUS!!! But, they got so excited when we arrived at the party that they wouldn't stand still for a picture! haha SO, here are a few action shots...


And here are some sweet pictures of them with Aunt June... they love her and she loves them! :)


And here's a picture of the whole gang!


After Aunt June's party, I drove straight to Evan's office and picked him up from work (where we changed into our Halloween costumes) and headed to Texarkana, TX, for an amazing Halloween party at my friend, Jaclyn's, house! It was a costume party, but we were supposed to wear all black... this is what we came up with...


Then, on Saturday, we drove to Fayetteville, AR, for the Razorback game!!


We had a pretty busy weekend and we drove a LOT but we loved every second of it!!

And now for the cookie part :)

I made no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies for Aunt June's Halloween party and here is the recipe:

No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Ingredients:
1/2 cup milk
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 t. vanilla
1/2 t. salt
1 stick margarine
4 T. cocoa powder
3 cups quick cooking oats
1/4 cup peanut butter

Directions:
In saucepan, melt margarine, mix sugar and cocoa powder with it, add milk and vanilla. Put on medium heat and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and add oats, salt and peanut butter. Drop spoonfuls of cookie mixture on wax paper and allow them to cool.

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Here's a picture!


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Whoa. Picture overload! I'm sorry! haha Looking at this post makes me wonder how we fit all of that into one weekend! :)

I hope you all had a great weekend too!!

Don't forget to vote today!!