Ginger Cookies

These are not your average cookie! I was looking for a gingersnap recipe a little while ago, and decided to try this one. I was so impressed by the balance of cloves and ginger in the cookies; it was hard to stop eating them! My ideal cookie is soft and chewy, and these hit the spot!

These aren’t technically gingersnaps, but are aptly named “Ginger Cookies,” and while the spices make me think of winter holidays, I would gladly eat them any day! I can almost smell them now!

  • 4  1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1  1/2 ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1  1/2 cups shortening
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs (or equivalent egg substitute)
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 3/4 cup sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt.

2. In a large bowl, beat shortening with a mixer for 30 seconds. Add 2 cups sugar. Beat until combined, scraping bowl as needed. Beat in eggs and molasses. Add flour mixture.

3. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll balls in 3/4 cup sugar; place 1  1/2 inches apart on a greased cookie sheet. Flatten balls of dough with the bottom of a glass if desired.

4. Bake 8 to 9 minutes or until bottoms are light brown and tops are puffed (do not overbake). Cool on a cookie sheet 1 minute. Remove; cool on a wire rack.

Yield: About 120 cookies

{Kudos to Better Homes and Gardens 100 Best Cookies magazine!}

Tomato Tortellini Soup

Instant winner, folks! This soup was a cinch to make, and it tastes sophisticated enough for company! My picky kids all pronounced it “good,” which is an extra reason to love it at my house!  It boasts a creamy tomato base, cheesy tortellini, and basil for seasoning. My husband couldn’t believe I had used fat-free half-and-half!

In all honesty, I don’t like tomatoes, and I don’t eat tomato soup, but I love this soup!! The milk and cream lightens the tomato taste, and it is perfectly paired with freshly grated Parmesan. My husband said he would probably be requesting it for his birthday dinner. Try it; you’ll love it, too!

  • 1 (9 oz) package refrigerated cheese tortellini
  • 2 cans (10-3/4 oz each) condensed tomato soup, undiluted
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups half-and-half cream
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1`/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • Additional Parmesan cheese, optional
  • 1/2 cup chopped oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, optional

1. Cook tortellini according to package directions.

2. In a large pot, combine soup, broth, cream, tomatoes (if desired), and seasonings. Heat through, stirring often.

3. Drain tortellini; add to soup. Stir in cheese. Sprinkle each serving with additional cheese, if desired.

Yield: 6-8 servings.

{Kudos to Taste of Home magazine!}

Creamy Ham and Corn Soup

Comfort food that is a cinch to put together? Sign me up! I have been looking for new recipes to try, but a top requirement is that I can prepare it in a reasonable amount of time. It only takes around a half hour to make, and most of the ingredients are things you probably have on hand!

You can’t go wrong with the flavors here: ham, sweet corn, red peppers, and onion, plus the perfect amount of ground pepper. With temperatures staying around or below freezing lately, this soup hit the spot!

  • 4 cans (60 oz) chicken broth
  • 4 cups corn
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 2/3 cup red pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground pepper
  • 2 cups ham, cubed
  • dill, snipped, optional

1. Combine broth, corn, cream, onion, and red pepper in a pot, and bring to a boil. Combine water, flour, salt, and pepper until smooth, and gradually stir into pot. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until slightly thickened. Stir in ham.

2. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Garnish with dill if desired.

Yield: 6-8 servings.

{Kudos to Taste of Home magazine!}

Best Biscuits and Gravy

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I can always tell that a certain dish is really good, if seeing photos of it makes me wish I had a helping of it! My husband and I wanted to find a fantastic biscuit recipe, and when we tried this one from allrecipes.com, we knew we didn’t need to look any further!

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I am no bread guru (I’m still working on my fear of yeast dough), but these were simple to put together, and really didn’t take much more time than my favorite drop biscuits. A bit of kneading is enough to give you perfectly fluffy layers!

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If this is the best biscuits and gravy recipe, you may be wondering why there are no pictures of the gravy… I was showing my husband the handful of photos I did take, and we both agreed none of them were going on the blog. A quick Google image search reconfirmed to me that sausage gravy, while delicious, is one of those non-photogenic foods. So, you get photos of puffy biscuits- yum!

Biscuits:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup shortening
  • 1 cup milk

1. Preheat oven to 425.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt. Cut in shortening until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add milk. The batter should pull away from the bowl.

3. Knead dough on a floured surface 15 to 20 times, then roll out to 1 inch thickness. Cut biscuits with cookie cutter, and place on a greased baking pan.

4. Bake 8-13 minutes, or until edges and top are golden brown.

 

Gravy:

  • 1 lb ground sausage, cooked
  • 3 Tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 3 cups milk
  • salt and pepper to taste

1. Melt butter in a large sauce pan. Stir in flour, and mix until smooth. On medium heat, cook until light brown. Gradually whisk in milk, until thickened. Stir in cooked sausage. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat, and simmer 12 to 15 minutes. If gravy is too thick, add a little more milk.

{Kudos to “J.P.’s Big Daddy Biscuits” and “Bill’s Sausage Gravy” on allrecipes.com!}

Banana Crunch Muffins

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I was looking for a good banana muffin recipe a few years ago, and came across this one, I was intrigued by the idea of adding granola, hoping that it would produce a heartier muffin, and I was very happy with the result! This muffin comes out smooth and light; a texture that is enhanced perfectly by the granola.

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I changed the original recipe, which also included chopped walnuts and banana chips, as well as instructions to leave pieces of banana in the batter. I chose to completely blend the banana for a smooth batter. I like the addition of coconut, but my family wasn’t very enthusiastic about it, so I usually leave it out.

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  • 3 cups flour
  • 1  1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten or egg substitute
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup butter, melted and cooled
  • 3 bananas, blended
  • 2 cups granola

OR

  • 1  1/2 cup granola  PLUS  1  1/2 cup shredded coconut

1. Preheat oven to 350. Line muffin cups with paper liners,

2. Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix in eggs, milk, vanilla, butter and bananas. Fold in granola (and coconut). Scoop into muffin liners.

3. Bake 18-22 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Yield: 24

{Kudos to allrecipes.com!}

Turkey, Swiss, and Cranberry Croissant

Turkey, Swiss, and Cranberry Croissant from Kaye's Cupboard

This sandwich was served at a church luncheon, and it’s fantastic! I love sandwiches and salads, because you can combine some of your favorite flavors to create a blend that satisfies your taste buds! I’m not a fan of cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving (at least not the jelled kind), so I was surprised by how much I liked the whole-berry cranberry sauce; it’s really the crux of the sandwich. This is so simple, and hits the spot! It’s perfect if you are feeding large groups, or if you just want to spruce up your lunch box.

Turkey, Swiss, and Cranberry Croissant from Kaye's Cupboard 2a

  • croissant
  • mayonnaise
  • whole-berry cranberry sauce
  • romaine lettuce
  • Swiss cheese
  • sliced turkey deli meat

Greek Chicken Pitas with Tzatziki Sauce

Greek Chicken Pitas from Kaye's Cupboard 2

If you are looking for a delicious explosion of flavors, this pita is for you! I’ll be honest; I’ve never had Greek food, but if it’s anything like this beauty, I need to find a good Greek restaurant! Each separate ingredient plays off the rest perfectly, and I love that meals like this give the option for everyone to build it how they want.

Greek Chicken Pitas from Kaye's Cupboard

I love the Greek Pita Flatbread I found at Costco, because it is sturdy enough, but so soft! The chicken is marinated for a few hours, and the spices and onion make the marinade so pretty, I almost included a photo of it! Top the moist chicken off with fresh cucumbers, onions, feta, cilantro, and homemade creamy Tzatziki sauce, and this is a meal you will enjoy every bite of!

Greek Chicken Pitas from Kaye's Cupboard 1

Marinade

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 3 Tbsp plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 Tbsp vinegar
  • 1/3 cup red onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1  1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • salt and pepper, to taste

1. Mix all ingredients. Place in gallon Ziploc bag and refrigerate 2-4 hours. Remove bag from refrigerator for the last 30 minutes to rest at room temperature. Remove chicken from marinade. Grill, then cut into strips.

Tzatziki Sauce

  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 tsp dried dill
  • pepper, to taste

1. Mix all ingredients. Done!

Other toppings

  • 6-8 Greek Pita Flatbread
  • Roma tomatoes, diced
  • cucumbers, peeled and diced
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Red onions, diced
  • feta cheese
  • cilantro
  • Kalamata olives

{Kudos to cookingclassy.com!}

Jam Bars

Jam Bars from Kaye's Cupboard crop

First off, I think I have made these close to ten times in the past few months, and have tried every flavor of Smucker’s Simply Fruit Jam. Every batch has turned out fantastic! These bars are simple and quick, and come from one of my favorite blogs, Our Best Bites! I do have to disagree with the author on one point- she says these are best when they are completely cooled, but I LOVE them warm, with a side of vanilla ice cream! Crumbly, slightly buttery, with a burst of your favorite fruit filling; they are the sure to become a family favorite!

Jam Bars from Kayescupboard.com 3

  • 2  1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten, or egg substitute
  • 1  1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 3/4 cup jam

1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease 8 x 8 pan.

2. Mix flour, sugars, oats, and salt. Add butter, egg, and extract, and mix well. (It will look like coarse crumbs.) Press about half of the dough into the bottom of the greased pan. Spread jam on top, leaving a small edge. Crumble remaining dough on top of jam, creating an even layer.

3. Bake 35-45 minutes, or until slightly golden.

Yield: About 16 bars

{Kudos to Our Best Bites- originally titled “Raspberry-Almond Cookie Bars”}

Sweet Boiled Corn on the Cob

IMG_3394My husband and two youngest daughters are corn-on-the-cob fiends. This is especially true with this sweet, juicy recipe for boiled corn!

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  • 6-8 ears of corn, husks removed
  • 2  1/4 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup sugar

Fill a large stockpot half-full with water, then add milk and sugar. Bring to a boil, checking occasionally to ensure that mixture doesn’t boil over. Add corn, then reduce heat and simmer for 7-8 minutes, or until corn is just tender. Use long tongs to remove corn from pot; cover with foil until ready to eat.

{Kudos to food.com!}

 

 

Ultimate Salad Sandwich

IMG_2687..I’ve had my fair share of tuna or chicken salad, but this tops them all. I love the blend of fruit added to the mix; both the flavors and textures are the perfect compliment to the meat. The photos show a lot of raisins, but it was also brimming with crunchy apple pieces, slivered almonds, and celery, and had crushed pineapple throughout. The mix of fruit made all the difference!

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  • 16 oz crushed pineapple, drained
  • 12 oz solid white tuna or chicken, drained
  • 1 large apple, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, sliced
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • bread or croissant

1. In a large bowl, combine the pineapple, meat, apple, celery, raisins, and almonds. In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise and lemon juice; stir into meat and fruit mixture.

Yield: 5 servings.

{Kudos to: Taste of Home’s Simple and Delicious and my mom!}

Hawaiian Haystacks

Hawaiian Haystacks from Kaye's Cupboard (8)I know a bunch of families that have had this meal for as long as they can remember. I think I was first introduced to it when I served a mission for my church. I wasn’t sure about the seemingly random grouping of ingredients- how would they actually taste together?

Hawaiian Haystacks from Kaye's Cupboard (3)Go ahead and assume that if you like the ingredient in general, or on its own, you will like it mixed with all the others! There is a plethora of topping options; if you Google “Hawaiian haystacks” or “Chinese sundaes,” you can find many other options that might sound good.

Hawaiian Haystacks from Kaye's Cupboard (5)My whole family gobbles this up every time, usually with seconds for everyone! Of course our young girls don’t generally choose to have green onion, and one doesn’t like pineapple, but that’s the beauty of a meal with so many choices of toppings!  Give this recipe a go; it is happy food!

Hawaiian Haystacks from Kaye's Cupboard (7)
MmmMmm!
  • cooked rice (at least one serving per person)
  • 10.5 oz can cream of chicken soup
  • 1  1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 12 oz canned chicken
  • dry chow mein noodles
  • green onion, chopped
  • 20 oz can crushed or chunk pineapple, drained
  • cheddar cheese, shredded
  • peanuts
  • shredded coconut
  • 8 oz Cool-Whip
  • slivered or sliced almonds

1. In a small saucepan, combine cream of chicken soup, broth, and canned chicken over medium heat. Serve rice with any combination of ingredients desired.

Just what the Doctor ordered: a TARDIS Pinny!

doctor who quoteAh, if you haven’t yet tried a Jammie Dodger, here’s your chance! I have the simple recipe up and waiting for you! I am planning on baking another batch this weekend! While you are waiting for your Jammie Dodgers to cool, I’d like to introduce you to my very talented sister-in-law, Melissa! I requested a Pikachu Pinny last October for my 2 year old’s Halloween costume. I was very impressed by the attention to detail and the quality of the sewing! My daughter LOVES her Pinny, and generally asks to wear it to bed after wearing it all day! We couldn’t be happier with it!

Melissa and I thought it would be to put together Doctor Who themed blog posts, and without further ado, here’s Melissa:

Hello everyone! I’m Melissa, the owner and creative mastermind behind Little Miss Pinny! I’m so excited to be the first guest on Kayla’s awesome blog! Seriously, these recipes just look delicious! She certainly does “take the cake” when it comes to yummy treats and meals. 😉

So, my blog is a bit different from Kayla’s. I’m not as talented in food as she is, but I do know how to sew! My blog, Little Miss Pinny, is designed to showcase all of my creations that are in my Etsy shop, Little Miss Pinny. But one thing we do have in common is our love for all things considered nerdy and geeky, Doctor Who being one of them.

To go along with Kayla’s awesome Jammie Dodgers recipe (and by awesome I mean I am so totally making those this weekend!), I have the perfect pinafore to match! Here’s my newest creation, the Timey-Wimey TARDIS Pinafore!

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Doesn’t just imagining a little cutie munching on one of those Jammie Dodger cookies while wearing this make you explode with Doctor Who fan cuteness overload?! 😉 Well, it does for me anyhow.

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Yes, this cutie is my adorable niece!

I just love how this whole pinafore turned out, and even how the accessories just fit together so well! The other part that I totally love (if I do say so myself) is the optional Bad Wolf text on the back.

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I know that bowties are cool, but you know what else is cool? The windows on this pinny are pockets. POCKETS! You know what that means?! It means this pinafore is BIGGER ON THE INSIDE! Lol!

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So, while your Jammie Dodgers are baking, head on over to the Little Miss Pinny shop to check out the Timey-Wimey TARDIS and all of my other creations! Don’t forget, I also take commission orders, including bigger sizes! Hope my next order is from you!

Allonsy!

Jammie Dodgers

Jammie Dodgers from Kaye's Cupboard (4)Eleven once told the Daleks a Jammie Dodger was a self-destruct button. It didn’t fool them for a minute, but that didn’t stop him from enjoying the cookie anyway! I’ve heard of British “biscuits,” but never actually tried any. This is an excellent place to start, it seems!

Jammie Dodgers from Kaye's Cupboard (2)

Very similar to shortbread cookies, but without any of the dry, crumbly texture, these cookies are lighter and flakier with a slight buttery taste. These beauties can be filled with whatever jam your heart desires. We preferred strawberry over grape, but we will definitely try others! I think blackberry would be delicious! With a sprinkling of sugar on both halves of the cookie, the overall combination of textures and flavors is perfect!

Jammie Dodgers from Kaye's Cupboard (3)
Don’t you LOVE the Doctor Who watercolors? They are done by my sister-in-law; check out her etsy store here!

 

Simplicity is such a great thing in this case, because it allows you to truly enjoy each component. It’s making my mouth water, just thinking about it! My husband I both had the same idea- to make this cookie part of a holiday so that we have a reason to make it at least once a year…although I suspect we will make it much more often than that, especially since they are simple to make, and we always have the few ingredients they need!

Jammie Dodgers from Kaye's Cupboard
We used a canning jar lid as a cookie cutter, and the cap off our bottle of vanilla extract to cut the center hole. My husband used a butter knife to create the ridges.

 

  •  1 cup butter, softened
  • 1  1/8 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3 cup flour
  • sugar, for sprinkling
  • 1  1/2 cups jam

1. Combine butter and powdered sugar in a large bowl until fluffy. Add vanilla and egg yolk and mix with a wooden spoon. Mix in flour, then form dough in to a smooth ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 hour.

2. Preheat oven to 375. Spray baking sheets with cooking spray. Place dough on a lightly floured surface, and roll to 3mm thickness. Cut out an even number of large circles with a cookie cutter. Use a small cookie cutter to cut out the center of half of the cookies.

3. Place them on the baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until they are a pale golden color. Be careful not to over-bake. Transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling, and sprinkle with sugar while still warm. Once they are completely cool, turn cookies with no cut-out upside down, spread about a teaspoon of jam on them, then top with cookie that has a cut-out. Cookies can be stored in an air-tight container.

{Kudos to jamieoliver.com!}

Sour Cream Pound Cake

Sour Cream Pound Cake from Kaye's Cupboard (4)We enjoyed this pound cake for dessert tonight, and I think it needs to be renamed “Happy Cake.” Who would have thought such a simple-looking cake could be so satisfying?

Sour Cream Pound Cake from Kaye's CupboardNot only was it a cinch to put together, it is so perfectly moist, with a lightly sweet vanilla flavor that is just right! I did make this with this fantastic egg substitute, so my cake has flecks of yellow from the flax seed. I also chose to use cake flour, instead of all-purpose, because I wanted it to be a little lighter than classic pound cake. It is still dense, but doesn’t feel as heavy as other pound cakes.

Sour Cream Pound Cake from Kaye's Cupboard (5)The original recipe had a homemade whipped cream to eat with it, but this cake stands up so well on it’s own- even the dollop on this particular piece was completely unnecessary. Make. Eat. Enjoy!

  • 1  1/2 cups cake flour or all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs, room temperature or egg substitute
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour a loaf pan.

2. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In a medium bowl, beat butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, then vanilla and sour cream. Slowly add flour mixture and beat until just combined.

3. Pour batter in loaf pan, and bake 50-60 minutes, or until tester in the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes, then remove from the pan.

{Kudos to the Our Best Bites cookbook! Also, check out ourbestbites.com!}

 

 

 

Coconut Tilapia

Coconut Tilapia from Kaye's CupboardThis is the only photo I got of this meal, and this one was just the one I sent my husband to let him know dinner was ready. I cooked extra, assuming I could take more pictures later with the leftovers, but the five of us demolished every bit of it! This is a really quick and easy meal; very little prep, bakes fast, and it’s easy to keep everything on hand. The coconut adds a nice, sweet flavor that we all loved!

  • 2/3 cup coconut, plain or toasted
  • 1 package Shake ‘n Bake Chicken Coating mix
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne (optional)
  • 1 egg (or egg substitute)
  • 5 tilapia fillets

1. Preheat oven to 375. Combine coconut, Shake ‘n Bake, and cayenne in a small bowl; set aside. Whisk egg in a separate small bowl.

2. Dip tilapia in egg, then in coconut mixture, coating completely, and pressing coating into tilapia. Place on broiler pan; bake 12-15 minutes, or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

{Kudos to Shake ‘n Bake box- originally “Coconut Shrimp”}