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Monthly Archives: April 2010

Lemon Cream Cheese Tarts for My Dear Mom

For those of you who have forgotten… Mother’s Day is lurking just around the corner. This is not a joke. I am not even foolin. This past week I have been thinking a lot about my own dear Mother and all of the great things she has taught me over the years. Do you ever […]

Posted in Pie/Pastry/Tarts | 31 Comments

Healthy Oven Baked Onion Rings

Hold on to your hats everybody, I’ve got a healthy recipe for you today. Oven Baked Onion Rings are the topic of discussion on this stormy spring day. These yummy Onion Rings are a fun little project that everyone in my family loves to gobble up.    Yes, even the boy who says he “hates” onions. […]

Posted in Appetizer, Vegetables | Tagged | 20 Comments

Molten Lava Cake

Wow! That picture’s bright enough to knock your socks off, isn’t it!  It just shouts out…. Eat me! Eat me! Rah Rah! Eat me! No, I wasn’t a cheer leader in high school. Those of you who know me from high school are nodding your head and thinking… “Nope, no way (chuckle, chortle) that girl is […]

Posted in Cake/Cupcakes/Frosting | 78 Comments

How to make your own Tiered Serving Platter for ***CHEAP***

Hello everyone! I have a fun, inexpensive little idea for you all today. It is after all going to Mothers Day soon I thought you might enjoy a fun gift idea.  I was at a wedding shower a few weeks ago and someone brought some delightful lemon squares on the most lovely tiered platter. I asked where she had […]

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | 39 Comments

Classic Spinach Salad

You might be thinking…  “Well that looks like a simple salad!”  You might be thinking…  “I need some sunglasses to shield my beautiful eyes from that shockingly bright yellow egg yolk.” I know I am. You might be thinking “Gosh. I really love red onions,  and Swiss cheese, and mushrooms, and boiled eggs, and BACON. Oh yes, […]

Posted in Salad | Tagged | 5 Comments

Creamy Poppy Seed Dressing

Well, well, well. Spring is in the air everyone! (At least it has been today, who knows about tomorrow.) The way I can tell it’s spring….. 1.The hot pink color on my arms after hanging out at the park with a great friend and three sweet little boys. 2. The 30 potato bugs LittleTwinBoyAaron  had squished tightly in his […]

Posted in Condiments, Dressing | 9 Comments

Light and Dark Chocolate Pinwheels Cookies

If you have been following this blog for even one teeny tiny week you know we have been chatting a lot about the beauty of a cake mix. I loved reading all of your comments about how a cake mix helps to  to simplify your lives. It got my mind just a rollin over all of […]

Posted in Cookies | 5 Comments

Parmeson Chicken w/ Spaghetti Sauce

I have a very SIMPLE meal idea for you on this Friday morning. I am in the mood for simple.  This past couple of weeks I’ve been 10 different shades of frazzled. Yes. 10 different shades. Does that ever happen to you? We’ve had a lot of family events, a vacation, a holiday, baptism, birthday, a […]

Posted in Chicken, Pasta | Tagged | 13 Comments

Tiered Vanilla Cake with Raspberry Filling

Here you have it! The cake I made for Emily’s birthday/baptism celebration. Does it look like the cake the dear girl picked from Flickr Photostream? Well….not really.  But at least I didn’t accidentally turn it elephant gray. I have learned a bit since that bad food coloring experience.  She loved the cake and we had a […]

Posted in Cake/Cupcakes/Frosting | 14 Comments

Healthy Corn Muffins

These wonderful corn muffins come together in a snap and have less fat than most muffins. Quick and Healthy….two things that carry a lot of weight around here. Well actually, we hope they help us NOT carry so much weight. I would be happy as a lark if these beauties could automatically shave about 5 inches […]

Posted in Quick Breads and Muffins | Tagged , | 23 Comments


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Lemon Cream Cheese Tarts for My Dear Mom

For those of you who have forgotten…
Mother’s Day is lurking just around the corner.
This is not a joke.
I am not even foolin.
This past week I have been thinking a lot about my own dear Mother and all of the great things she has taught me over the years.
Do you ever find yourself saying things to your own kids that your Mother used to say to you?
It happens a lot at my house. 
Sure am glad mine had so many good things to say.
Some of the things I have learned from my Mom are….
1. Visiting with strangers in the grocery store
is important and smiled upon.
2. Visiting with anyone, anywhere
is important and smiled upon.
2. Keeping track of dear friends and family
 (“your roots” as she would say)
makes your life full and wonderful.
3. Getting the giggles at inopportune moments
during the prayer at church…
in the middle of a wedding…
any place where it should be quiet and all normal people are acting sophisticated….
is a curse….and a curse we carry with a chuckle in our hearts. 
My apologies if I have offended any of you with my inappropriate chuckling.
You know who you are….
Aunt Thelma?
4. Laughter is the best medicine. You can take it anywhere and it’s cheap, cheap, cheap. Laughing your guts out can really brighten up the day.
5. Show grace under pressure.
6. Be kind and good to everyone you meet.
7. Reading to your kids is a pleasure.
8. Reading a good book for yourself is a heavenly pleasure.
9. Cook up a meal every night for your family.
10. Let’s just all LOVE EACH OTHER.
“Just let it go….”
“Take that one off your list….”
“Don’t worry about that one for one more second….”
11. Stand by your man.
She sounds like a pretty spectacular lady,
doesn’t she?  She is!
 I wouldn’t be surprised if 90% of you have visited with her at the grocery store at some point in your life!
Each year that goes by and I experience more of what raising a large family is like…
my admiration
and respect
and understanding
and appreciation
for her grows tremendously.
I made these Lemon Cream Cheese Tarts this week with her in mind. Lemon Meringue Pie has always been one of her favorites….just hope I can get some of these tarts to her house before my kids scarf them up!
Love you, Mom.
Happy Mothers Day…..
Lemon Cream Cheese Tarts
Yield: 24 tarts
Time: 1 1/2 hours + 1 hour refrigeration 
Crust recipe from Julie Thomson
Filling Recipe from Taste of Home

Crust: (this crust recipe makes 24 tarts, or 2-3 pie crusts…depending on how thin you roll it!)
3 C flour
1 t salt
1 1/3 C shortening, butter flavored
2 T sugar
5 T cold ice water
1 egg, beaten
1 t vinegar

Lemon Filling:
1 1/2 C sugar
6 T cornstarch
1/2 t salt
1 1/4 C water
2 T butter
2 t grated lemon peel
6 drops yellow food coloring
1/2 C fresh lemon juice

Cream Cheese Topping:
1   8 oz package cream cheese, softened
1 C powdered sugar
1 1/2 C cool whip
1 T fresh lemon juice

PASTRY SHELLS
1. For the crust, put the flour, salt, sugar and shortening in your stand mixer and mix with the whisk attachment just until it starts to form a crumb like mixture. If you don’t have a stand mixer you can just put the ingredients in a bowl and mix with a fork, or pastry blender.
2. Turn the mixer on to low and add 5 T cold ice water. Don’t add any of the ice….just the cold water. I just fill up a bowl with water and ice and then measure out the 5 T.
3. Add one beaten egg.
4. Add 1 t vinegar. Mix the dough until all ingredients are combined. Don’t over mix here folks. Just get them combined and you are good to go.
5. Divide the dough into 4 pieces. Flour your counter top just a bit and then roll each section out. It helps to flour your rolling pin and your dough as well. You don’t want it to stick to the counter top.
6. Cut out the tarts with a large star or flower cookie cutter. You could also use a large cup, or small bowl.
7. Gently place the cut out dough in regular sized muffin tins. Use a fork to poke some holes in the bottom of each shell.
8. Bake at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes. You don’t want them to get too brown. Keep and eye on them and take them out just when the tips of the shells start to turn a golden color.
9. Take the pans out of the oven and set them on cooling racks for about 10 minutes. Don’t remove the shells yet. They need time to sit and cool in the muffin tins. This will help them keep their lovely form. After the 10 minutes are up carefully take them out of the tins and let them continue to cool on the wire racks.
LEMON FILLING
1. Zest your lemons and squeeze the juice. Set both of these aside.
2. In a sauce pan combine 3/4 C sugar, cornstarch and salt. Stir in the water and bring to a boil over medium heat.
3. Reduce the heat and add the remaining sugar.
4. Cook until the mixture is thick and bubbly.
5. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter, lemon peel, and food coloring. When these are combined gently stir in the lemon juice. Do not over mix.
6. Let the filling cool for about 10 minutes. Then pour into the pastry shells. Refrigerate for about 1 hour.
                            CREAM CHEESE TOPPING
1. Beat your softened cream cheese and powdered sugar together. Add the cool whip and lemon juice and beat for another minute.
2. Pipe the topping onto the tarts and enjoy!
Store leftovers in the refrigerator.
Check out Mommy’s Kitchen for more great recipes!

Healthy Oven Baked Onion Rings

Hold on to your hats everybody, I’ve got a healthy recipe for you today. Oven Baked Onion Rings are the topic of discussion on this stormy spring day. These yummy Onion Rings are a fun little project that everyone in my family loves to gobble up.
 
 Yes, even the boy who says he “hates” onions.
I think he’s just afraid of having onion breath.
You know how everything is so embarrassing when you are in middle school. I wouldn’t want him to be forced to breath his onion breath on any of the “SeriouslyHotGirls” he keeps telling me about. 
“Seriously, Mom…..SO HOT.” are his exact words.
Puts a smile on my face, that he’s willing to chat with me about things like this. Sure hope it lasts!
 
On second thought….eat all the onion rings you want buddy! Let’s keep the “SeriouslyHotGirls” interested in someone else.
Here’s to the power of onion breath….hope you get stricken with some today. 
Healthy Oven Baked Onion Rings
Yield: 6 Servings
Time: 1 hour
Recipe from Jamie Cooks It Up

5 large onions

1 C milk

1 C flour

2-3 C Italian bread crumbs

1. Slice your onions into rings.

2. Pour your flour out onto a plate and dredge each ring in the flour one at a time. Place the rings on a cookie sheet sprayed with cooking spray.

3. Slide the cookie sheet in your freezer for about 15 minutes.

4. Pour the milk into a shallow pan (I use a pie dish) and dredge each onion rings in the milk.

5. Put the bread crumbs in a shallow pan (pie dish for this step as well folks) and dredge each onion ring in the bread crumbs.

6. Place on a sprayed cookie sheet and bake at 400 for about 20 minutes. You want your rings to lay flat on the sheet, so you may need to use 2 cookies sheets depending on how big your onions are.

Serve with ketchup or BBQ sauce.


Molten Lava Cake

Wow! That picture’s bright enough to knock your socks off, isn’t it! 
It just shouts out….
Eat me!
Eat me!
Rah Rah!
Eat me!
No, I wasn’t a cheer leader in high school.
Those of you who know me from high school are nodding your head and thinking…
“Nope, no way (chuckle, chortle) that girl is not coordinated. Isn’t she the one with the husky male singing voice and really big feet?” 
Those two qualities alone do not a cheer leader make.
But if I could cheer for this fabulous Molten Lava Cake, I would!
 It is seriously like a party in your mouth my friends.
A fun old party. 
This recipe makes 8 ramekins full of heavenly chocolate bliss.
(You could easily 1/2 the recipe if you only want 4 ramekins full of chocolate bliss.)
 When your fork hits the center of the cake it just oozes out all over your plate….
I told you it was going to be a party in your mouth.
Molten Lava Cake
Yield: 8 Servings
Time: 40 minutes

 Recipe adapted from: Kraft Foods
PRINT RECIPE

8 squares Baker’s Semi Sweet Chocolate
1 C butter (2 sticks)
2 C + 2 T powdered sugar
4 eggs
4 egg yolks
1 t vanilla
dash salt
12 T flour

1. In a medium sized microwaveable dish melt your chocolate and butter. Heat it up in 1 minute intervals, taking it out and stirring between each interval.
2. When it’s nice and melted stir it all around to incorporate the butter into the chocolate.
3. Add the powdered sugar and stir to incorporate.
4. Add the eggs and egg yolks and blend them in with a wire whisk. Add the vanilla and salt and stir.
5. Stir in the flour.

6. Generously butter the insides of the Ramekins.
7. Pour the batter into the cups.
8. Bake at 425 degrees for 13 to 14 minutes. You want the out sides to be firm, but the center to be soft. Take them out of the oven and let the cute little darlings just sit there for a minute or two.
9. Run a knife around the edge of the dish and turn it upside down on your serving plate. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.
Enjoy the party!

How to make your own Tiered Serving Platter for ***CHEAP***

Hello everyone!
I have a fun, inexpensive little idea for you all today. It is after all going to Mothers Day soon I thought you might enjoy a fun gift idea.
 I was at a wedding shower a few weeks ago and someone brought some delightful lemon squares on the most lovely tiered platter. I asked where she had gotten the platter and she revealed…….
some one had….
 MADE IT FOR HER.
“Hmmmm.” I thought
“Wow!” I said.
“I could do that for super cheap!” I kept thinking all day.
All I would need are some cute dishes, a little Epoxy (found at any Home Depot or Lowes) and some inexpensive candle stick holders.
I have been on the look out ever since for some cute dishes.
I found these fun dishes at Walmart. All of them were under $2 a piece. The candle stick holders I found at Hobby Lobby on sale for $1.50 each.
These cute Forth of July dishes came from Target. The grand total for this platter was about $4.
I found these sunny dishes as my local Macey’s Grocery Store. If you watch in the seasonal section of most grocery stores they usually carry a small selection of dishes that match the current season. I’ve been buying some here and there to use in my food photo shoots. These dishes were $1.50 a piece.
The candle stick holder is from Hobby Lobby, but these fun dishes came from Target. They have so many fun, cheap (99cents for many of them) summery dishes right now. I thought it would be fun to use this cute blue cup as the stand for these colorful dishes. Wouldn’t they be cute at a kids birthday party loaded with fun crackers or cookies? You could even epoxy the cup on the top and use it for dips. The possibilities are really endless!
This is the epoxy we used. Cost is about $4. It can be found in the paint section of Home Depot or Lowes. It will be with the other glues and caulks.You can purchase epoxy that will set up in a variety of times. You’ll want to the kind that sets up in 5 minutes. If you purchase Epoxy that sets up in 90 seconds you won’t have time to get it on your dishes before it starts to harden. Trust me folks. Give yourself the 5 minute window of opportunity.
Find a paper plate, and some toothpicks. Squeeze the epoxy out of the tube and mix it around with a toothpick.
On the bottom of your candlestick holder carefully apply the epoxy.
Thanks to MyHandsomeHusband for his assistance in putting them together!
Place the epoxied end of the candle stick holder in the center of your plate. Let it sit for about 30 minutes, then put the epoxy on the top of the candlestick holder and place your top dish on it.
Let the epoxy sit to set up for about 2 hours. It will harden pretty quickly but I would leave it alone for the 2 hours just to be sure everything is set in stone.
Have fun! Give one to your self, give one to your Mom, Give one to your sisters, give one to a friend. At this cheap price you can afford to! Have a great day everyone!
Recipe for these great looking Peanut Butter Cupcakes comming to a blog near you soon……

Classic Spinach Salad

You might be thinking…
 “Well that looks like a simple salad!” 
You might be thinking…
 “I need some sunglasses to shield my beautiful eyes from that shockingly bright yellow egg yolk.”
I know I am.
You might be thinking
“Gosh. I really love red onions,
 and Swiss cheese,
and mushrooms,
and boiled eggs,
and BACON.
Oh yes, I love lots of bacon.”
I do too.
You might be thinking…
“Sure would like to drizzle a whole bunch of
all over the top of that bacon infested bunch of greens.”
You better believe it baby.
You might be thinking…
“Sure wish I had a pretty bowl like that one.”
Me too. I bet my friend Cindi would be happy to lend it to you as well.
You might be thinking…
“Sure glad it’s spring and all the seeds I planted in my garden are getting a nice drink of a rain shower today.”
Wow. You and I have a lot in common.
Classic Spinach Salad
Yield: about 12 servings
Time: 20 minutes
Recipe from Ember Storrs 
4 eggs
1/2 of a red onion
10 strips bacon
1 C Swiss cheese, chopped or shredded
1 package mushrooms
1 bag spinach
1 head romaine lettuce
1. Place your eggs in a medium sized sauce pan and cover with warm water. Bring to a boil and let them boil away for about 7 minutes.
2. Cook your bacon up and drain off the grease. Let it cool down and then crumble it all up.
3. Chop up your lettuce and spinach into bite sized pieces.
4. Slice up the onions into rings.
5. Shred or dice up your Swiss cheese.
6. Peel your eggs and cut them into slices.
7. Mix it all together in a large bowl.

Creamy Poppy Seed Dressing

Well, well, well. Spring is in the air everyone!
(At least it has been today, who knows about tomorrow.)
The way I can tell it’s spring…..
1.The hot pink color on my arms after hanging out at the park with a great friend and three sweet little boys.
2. The 30 potato bugs LittleTwinBoyAaron  had squished tightly in his little palm.
3. The 30 potato bugs LittleTwinBoyAaron revived and let crawl around  in his pocket.
4. The amount of usage my trampoline is getting.
5. The weeping tree in my backyard that is weeping blossoms.
6. My girls romping around the neighborhood riding bikes in their flip flops.
Every year after a cold hard winter, I am amazed how Spring just unleashes a grand breath of fresh air into everything. 
Just puts a pretty smile on your face now doesn’t it?
If it rains tomorrow, I’m going to try not to cry.
I’m going to try REALLY hard.
In the mean time I am thrilled to present this great Poppy Seed Dressing recipe to you on this lovely day of spring.
I have tried many, many Poppy Seed Dressing recipes.
Some that were too oily…
Some that were too mayonaisee…
Some that tasted bitter….
I have finally fiddled around enough and have come up with this tasty, tangy, sweet, springy Poppy Seed Dressing. 
I hope you like it! 
Come on back tomorrow.
I’ll be sharing the fabulous Spinach Salad that goes with the dressing.
We can have a good cry together if it’s raining!
 It’s always better to cry along with some one…
Unless you have entered into the “ugly cry”.
Then it’s best to close your bedroom door and just let it all hang out.
Always feels much better when you get it over with doesn’t it?
Not sure why you and I are talking about the “ugly cry” on a beautiful day with a beautiful Poppy Seed Dressing.
The things you folks get me gabbing on and on about….
Creamy Poppy Seed Dressing
Yield: 3 Cups
Time: 10-15 minutes (depending on how many kids need help with homework)
Recipe from Jamie Cooks It Up!
 PRINT RECIPE
2/3 C apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 C sugar
1/4 C chopped onion
1/2 t dry mustard
2 t salt
3/4 C mayonnaise
1/4 C fresh orange juice
3/4 C canola or vegetable oil
1 T poppy seeds
1. Put all ingredients but the oil and the poppy seeds in a blender. Let the old girl get busy blending them all together.
2. While the blender is a blending away take the lid off carefully and then add the oil slowly. When the oil is added, blend on high for about 2 minutes.
3. Turn off the blender and gently stir in the poppy seeds with a spoon. Don’t blend them. They’ll get all chopped up. And….all I can say is I like to see my the Poppy Seeds when I’m eating this tasty tasty treat!
4. Serve or cover and refrigerate.

Light and Dark Chocolate Pinwheels Cookies

If you have been following this blog for even one teeny tiny week you know we have been chatting a lot about the
beauty of a cake mix.
I loved reading all of your comments about how a cake mix helps to  to simplify your lives.
It got my mind just a rollin over all of the fun possibilities in that great Betty Crocker Box. I came up with these fun Light and Dark Chocolate Pinwheel Cookies. They are super tasty and were a lot of fun to put together. The dough is made from 1 Devils Food Cake Mix and 1 White Cake Mix with a bit of butter and eggs thrown in. Then they are dipped in white and semi sweet chocolate!
Oh my happy heck.
They are TASTY!
Break out the Broccoli and the Lentil Soup.
…I consumed more than my fair share…
Light and Dark Chocolate Pinwheel Cookies
Yield: 40 Cookies
Time: About 1 1/2 hours + 1 hour refrigeration time
Recipe from Jamie Cooks It Up! 
1 Devil’s Food Cake Mix
1 White Cake Mix
1 C butter
2 eggs
2 bags (12 oz) white chocolate chips
2 bags (12 oz) semi sweet chocolate chips
1. Throw the butter in the microwave and melt it just a bit. Don’t let it get all the way melted. It will make the dough too soft and hard to work with.
2. Add half of the butter and one egg to the Devils Food Cake Mix. Mix with your hand mixer or stand mixer until the ingredients are combined and a great dough forms.
3. Add the other half of the butter and one egg to the White Cake Mix. Mix until combined.
4. Spray your counter top with cooking spray. Roll out the chocolate dough into a large rectangle with your trusty rolling pin. You want it to be about 1/2 inch thick.
5. Press the White Dough over the top of it with your fingers.
6. Grab your rolling pin and roll over the top to make things nice and smooth.
7. Roll the rectangle up starting at the long end. I used a handy spatula to be sure all of the dough was coming off the counter. It really didn’t stick much, but the spatula was helpful.
8. Place the cookie dough log on a large cookie sheet and cover with saran wrap. Refrigerate for about 1 hour.
9. With a sharp knife cut the cookie dough log into slices about 1/2 inch thick.
10. Place on a large sprayed cookie sheet and bake at 350 for approximately 10 minutes.
11. Let the cookies cool completely on a wire rack.
12. In a glass measuring cup melt the white chocolate in the microwave. Only cook it for 30 seconds at a time, stirring after each cooking period.
13. Dip one side of the cookie in the white chocolate, place on a cookie sheet covered in wax paper. Slide them into the refrigerator so the chocolate sets. This should only take about 15 minutes.
14. While the white chocolate is setting up melt the semi sweet chocolate the same way you melted the white.
15. Dip the cookies in the semi sweet chocolate and return to the fridge to set up.
You are ready to enjoy!

Two happy faces.

These two make life a lot of fun!
Have a great day everyone!
I have some more great recipes coming your way this week.
 See you back here in a day or so! 

Parmeson Chicken w/ Spaghetti Sauce

I have a very SIMPLE meal idea for you on this Friday morning. I am in the mood for simple.  This past couple of weeks I’ve been 10 different shades of frazzled. Yes. 10 different shades. Does that ever happen to you? We’ve had a lot of family events, a vacation, a holiday, baptism, birthday, a little (very little) ditty on the news….
You see the 10 shades right before your eyes don’t you! Someone told me once that when your are raising kids you live your life in different degrees of frazzled.
Amen.
I’m happy to report that after a day or so spent in my pjs folding 10 years worth of laundry and reading 5 piles of story books to my twin boys….my “frazzled” level has been reduced  to a happy .5!
Thank. Good. Ness.
This chicken recipe only has THREE INGREDIENTS! What can be more simple than that! Throw your chicken in to bake, boil up some pasta, crack open a jar of spaghetti sauce and you’ll be sitting pretty my friends.
Pretty as a picture.
Parmesan Chicken with Spaghetti Sauce
Yield: 6 servings
Time: 40 minutes
Recipe from Jamie Cooks It Up!
6 Chicken Breasts
2 1/2 C shredded Parmesan Cheese (for the best deal I get mine at Costco)
2 C Progresso Italian Bread Crumbs (I also buy this in bulk at Costco)
Penne Pasta
1 jar Spaghetti Sauce
1. Place your chicken breasts in a large gallon sized Ziploc bag. Pound the chicken flat with a meat mallet. If you don’t have a meat mallet, never fear. Just use the end of any can from your pantry and you are good to go.
2
. Cut the chicken into strips with a pair of kitchen scissors. No kitchen scissors? Round some up, guys and gals…you’ll never scoff at a chicken recipe again. Your pair of kitchen scissors will save you a lot of time.
3. Roll your chicken strips around in the parmesan cheese, then in the bread crumbs. Then put them in a sprayed 9 x 13 pan. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes. Take the foil off and bake for 10 more minutes.
4. Cook your pasta according to the package directions, heat up your sauce and you are ready to rumble.

Tiered Vanilla Cake with Raspberry Filling

Here you have it! The cake I made for Emily’s birthday/baptism celebration. Does it look like the cake the dear girl picked from Flickr Photostream?
Well….not really.
 But at least I didn’t accidentally turn it elephant gray.
I have learned a bit since that bad food coloring experience.
 She loved the cake and we had a wonderful day on Saturday when she was baptised a member of our church.
Thanks to Betty Crocker for supplying me with the ingredients to make this cake. Keep on reading for the recipe and instructions!
Tiered Vanilla Cake with Raspberry Filling
Yield: 25-30 servings
Time: 1 1/2 hours baking/mixing time
          Freeze it overnight
          1 hour to decorate
Recipe from Jamie Cooks It Up! 
Cake:
3 Golden Vanilla Cake Mixes by Betty Crocker + ingredients to make cake
3/4 C seedless Raspberry Jam
Butter Cream Frosting:
1 C Butter softened
1 C Butter flavored shortening
1 t vanilla
3-4 T milk
dash salt
4 C powdered sugar
1. Make the cake mixes according to the instructions on the box. I mixed each one separately…I wasn’t sure how they would turn out if I did them all together. I borrowed these Wilton Cake pans from my sweet friend and neighbor Melanie. She always has great cake advise for me!
I used each pan twice. The larger pan will hold 1 cake mix, and the smaller will hold 1/2 of a cake mix. (You see the need for 3 cake mixes now don’t you.)
Bake at 350 degrees…you will have to watch to be sure they don’t burn. The smaller pan obviously cooks for a shorter time.
2. When the cake is still warm from the oven carefully cut the rounded top off so that the cake will be flat and even. Put the cake on a cookie sheet and place it in the freezer. Yes….put it in while it is still warm. Don’t cover it at all. Leave the cake in the freezer until it is cooled.
3. Take the layers out of the freezer wrap them in tin foil and put them back in the freezer. Leave them overnight. This is going to make your frosting experience a lot easier.
4. Make your frosting by beating the butter and shortening together until smooth. Add the powdered sugar a little at a time, alternately with the milk. Add the vanilla and beat until it’s all nice and smooth. If it’s too thick add just a bit of milk, if it’s too runny add a bit more powdered sugar.
5. Put a bit of the frosting in the middle of your serving tray and place the first layer of cake on top of it.
6. Pipe a ring of frosting around the top edge of the cake and then spoon the raspberry filling over top. Place the other large layer on top. Add the small bottom cake layer on top of the large layer, pipe frosting around the top edge, spoon the filling on and place the second small layer on top.
7. To be sure the cake doesn’t slip slide away stick some straws or shish kabob skewers through the top layers all the way down to the serving plate. Cut the tips off with some scissors.
8. Frost the cake with a thin layer of frosting. Doesn’t look too pretty here does it. No problem! This frosting layer is called the “crumb layer”. You are just getting started here. It’s ok if it looks messy. After your crumb layer is done, put the whole thing back in the fridge for about 15 minutes.
9. Take it out of the fridge and add another layer of frosting. This time you shouldn’t have any crumbs coming though. Try and get it as even as possible. (Perfectly even is not one of my possibilities….I just shoot for pretty good!)
10. I got this bunch of flowers at Walmart for $4. That is a good deal! I pulled them off of this garland and used them for the cake. I put some pretty ribbon around the bottom of each cake layer, piped some frosting around the edges and added the flowers. See! You don’t have to make your frosting  perfectly even….just put some pretty flowers on it, and no one will be able to tell. Happy Baking!

Healthy Corn Muffins

These wonderful corn muffins come together in a snap and have less fat than most muffins. Quick and Healthy….two things that carry a lot of weight around here.
Well actually, we hope they help us NOT carry so much weight.
I would be happy as a lark if these beauties could automatically shave about 5 inches off each of my hips.
Wouldn’t that be heaven!
Slimming down on muffins and
being able to sing like Wynonna Judd…
that would be heaven to me. The gal has a voice like butter…
Which I hope is a part of heaven as well.
For those of you in Utah, I am going to be on the Channel 2 Noon News hour on Monday. I’ll be doing a segment on basic baking ingredients and how to keep them organized in your kitchen.
Sounds like a lot of fun doesn’t it?
Sure wish these muffins would shave 5 inches off my hips by then. 
Don’t hold your breath.
Which is what I’ll be doing on the news while I try and suck my stomach in…wonder if Wynonna does that when she sings?
I’d wager, no.
Maybe she and I will both get to be skinny in heaven.
Cross your fingers for me.
 Hope I don’t say anything dumb, or trip, or let an accidental curse  word escape from my pretty lips. 
(On the news….and certainly in heaven.)
Healthy Corn Muffins
Yield: 12 muffins
Time: 30 minutes or less!
Recipe from Jamie Cooks It Up!
1 1/2 C flour
1 C cornmeal
1/2 C sugar
1 t baking soda
2 t baking powder
1 t salt
1/2 C blended up canned corn (don’t get all squeemish on me)
1 egg, whisked with a fork until frothy
3 T butter, melted
1. In a small food processor or in a blender process your can of corn until it is all saucy and smooth. Don’t worry your pretty little head about this ingredient. I fed these lovely treasures to a bunch of neighbor kids and they all loved them. They didn’t even realize they had less fat. This blended up corn will replace some of the butter that the original recipe called for. Only some folks. We don’t want to omit the butter all together now do we?
2. In a mixing bowl combine the 1/2 C blended corn, egg and melted butter. Mix with a wooden spoon.
3. In a separate bowl combine all other ingredients.
4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir just until combined.
5. Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray. Carefully spoon the batter into each cup. Only fill them 2/3 of the way. You want to leave room for them to rise up.
6. Bake at 350 for 13-16 minutes. Enjoy!