Thursday, March 29, 2012

Only $5, Y'all ...

Yep. I'm shameless. Olivia's softball team is hosting a PANCAKE BREAKFAST on Saturday, April 28 at 7 a.m. (yawn!) at the Alcoa Highway Applebee's. Tickets are a suggested $5 donation which gets ya all the pancakes, sausage, syrup, butter and stuff you care to eat.

Want to help but would rather sleep? Totally fine. You can 'virtually attend' by doing a donation only.

Live out of town but wish you could be there? No problem. Same option for you.

All in on the pancakes and want to buy a ticket in advance? Gotcha covered! Buy your ticket online! How, you ask?


I love technology. Click the button below, and you'll be taken to a secure site to handle all the details. If you want to actually come to the breakfast, leave a note on how I can get your tickets to you - mail, at the breakfast, when we see each other, whatever.

Thanks so much - our #44 thanks you, too! Make sure she waits on your table.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Cream Cheese Pound Cake

This is a Southern Living recipe my friend - and then, neighbor - Melanie and I discovered when our oldests were babies. We both had the grocery list etched internally and could whip it up pretty much without cracking the book. Until now. My eyesight is hit or miss these days, and I interpreted the measurement on the butter as 1 1/2 POUNDS ... so I put in 6 sticks instead of 3. Coronary on a plate! Guess what, though? It's delicious. And it ought to be!

Oh, the pic was taken with my phone which doesn't have a flash ... the dark exterior of the cake is a shadow. Live and in person, it's a buttery, golden color all over.

1 1/2 cups butter, softened (that's 3 sticks ... or you can double it like I did!)
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
3 cups sugar
6 large eggs (best at room temp)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Note: I find it helpful to unwrap the butter and cream cheese and place in the mixer bowl several hours before planning to mix; just throw a dish towel over the top to keep it safe.

Beat butter and cream cheese with an electric mixer until creamy. Add sugar, one cup at a time, mixing between each addition. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until combined.

Place flour and salt in a bowl; stir lightly to incorporate. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture while mixing at low speed. Don't over-mix. Stir in the vanilla by hand using a large spatula or wooden spoon. Batter will have lots of volume.

Spoon batter into a well-greased and floured 10-inch Bundt pan (the P'Chef Stoneware Fluted Pan works GREAT). Bake at 300F for 1 hour and 40 minutes or until a wooden toothpick comes out clean. Personally, I'm okay with it still be a bit moist inside; gives it character. I take it out at the time limit no matter what. Let it cool in the pan for 15 minutes -- this gives you time to pick at all the flaky layers calling your name from what will eventually be the bottom of the cake. Go ahead. No one will see. :)

Flip it over onto a wire rack to cool completely. Stores at room temperature. Doesn't need icing, but add whatever you like. Warning: fresh berries and cream will make this cake twice as dangerous!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Valentines Pancakes

Well, my plan for me and O to make chocolate whoopie pies for our Valentine's dinner dessert was foiled ... sweetly, though, by our two guys providing "a big cookie" to cap off the night. Knowing this ahead of time, I made something else kind of fun for "Valentine's Eve" on Sunday. We had breakfast for dinner which always requires pancakes ...

Friday, February 11, 2011


Hudson has lost four teeth. Three of these are MIA. One was swallowed; another was knocked out on a ride at Dollywood and either lost then or in the trauma that followed in the bathroom; and a third was discovered missing while eating pancakes at Nana's -- not sure if it came out in his sleep or what. Poor Tooth Fairy! Her castle will never get built at this rate.

Below is the Dollywood dental disaster. Notice the front tooth on the right; barely hanging on. This tooth ended up centering itself in the front and hanging on by a thread for about 6 weeks!

This is the current state of things.

Makes me a little sad ... something about those tiny teeth makes me still think of him as my baby. His look is about to change. Again. And it won't be the last time either ...

Blogging or Baking?

It's not like I didn't have any free time in January ... sickness, snow, cozy nights at home. All of those elements made for a perfect time to catch up on my lack of committment to my blog. I would really love to be a professional blogger ... or a baker ... or a tour guide of Italy's best restaurants ... or the director of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. But, I'm not. Although, I'm working on the 'baker' part. Here are a few things I tackled over the hibernation season:

Eggnog Cupcakes with Peppermint Crunch Icing
This challenge was sent to me by my SIL Stephanie; she found the recipe on a blog of one of her friends. I needed something to take to the annual Williams Christmas Eve Feast, and they were GREAT! Only problem ... too pretty to eat. Hate it when that happens! Here's the proof:

Quiller Quiche
I made that up. I don't have a recipe for this one; might be why it's so good! Honestly, the best quiche I've made. Ever. Pillsbury crust filled with spinach, onion, sausage, cream, eggs, mozzarella and parm. Salt, pepper and nutmeg round out the simple spices. I've made this a couple of times since the first go 'round. Mmmmmm:

Buttermilk Cheddar Biscuits
Oh, Ina. Ina, Ina, Ina. She's probably one of my favorite F'Network peeps. Her motto: buy half, and make half so you can enjoy the party. Well, even if the party is just dinner, go buy a rotisserie chicken and a bag 'o salad and spend a few minutes making these gems. My first run was incredible -- flaky, buttery layers that melted as soon as your breath met the bread. My baker MIL even wanted the recipe and to come watch me the next time I made them. Flattered! I did make a second run -- delicious, but not as light and flaky. I increased the recipe to make more, but not a true 'double'. Me? Not a math genius. Might have gotten something lost in translation, BUT not a crumb was left!

My other new favorite thing to bake? Granola! Yep. It all started with a pumpkin spice granola found on the Annie's Eats blog. I was hooked. The kids liked it; MIL liked it; my aunt liked it; and I hoarded it as long as I could. Then I made a double batch. So good with yogurt or even dry with chocolate chips as a snack. I expanded my flavor chioces to a honey cinnamon version. Equally good with yogurt for breakfast. Equally good turned into trail mix. Took the trail mix on a road trip with some friends in January. Some addictions were started. I don't have a pic of the granola results ... never really had a chance to!

My next baking experiment? Whoppie Pies for Valentine's Day. Will have to report back on those!