Saturday, November 28, 2009

'Cause we need a little Christmas...on these kitchen cabinets!

I live in an apartment with hideous, ultra modern white cabinets and cheapy silver handles. So I'm sprucing them up with a little Christmas cheer! I made 9in wreaths from garland I got from the Dollar Tree (15ft for $1). Then I tried a little bow at the top and ribbon to hang them. I used duck tape to hold mine (it can't hurt these cabinets). These kitchen cabinet wreaths made a huge difference and had a big impact for cheap, we're talking 20 cents each!

Here's my baker Santa I got 75% off. I added some scrap fabric, an old hot cocoa tin from Williams Sonoma (I never throw away anything I find beautiful), and some bowls to create a cute scene on top the fridge in keeping with the theme of the kitchen.

Love my cute gingerbread man- Thanks mom!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Fall Desserts

One thing I love about fall is all the delicious fall desserts. I don't profess to be any great baker so all my credit goes to the recipes. We tried many different fall desserts but 2 have become family favorites, definite keepers.

Our family is not big on cooked apples/apple pie. However, I've been dying to make a pie with fresh apples this fall and I found a recipe that EVERYONE will love, even non-apple pie fans and those undecided. This apple pie was light on the apples and heavy on the delicious crumb topping and crust and served alongside a scoop of vanilla ice cream, it was fall dessert heaven.

Crumb-Topped Apple Pie

2 cups flour
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup uncooked regular oats
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup finely chopped walnuts
3/4 cup butter, melted
3 large apples, peeled and thinly sliced (I chose a variety-1 fuji, 1 golden delicious, and 1 granny smith)
1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp corn starch
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 cup water
1/2 tsp vanilla

Combine first 5 ingredients. Add butter and stir. Reserve 1 1/4 cup, packed mixture for topping. Press remaining mixture on bottom and up sides of 9 inch pie dish.
Arrange apple slices in pie plate.
In a small saucepan, combine 1/3 cup sugar and cornstarch. Add water and bring to boil over medium heat. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Pour over apples.
Top pie with remaining crumb mixture.
Bake at 350F for 42 minutes

(Adapted from The Ultimate Southern Living Cookbook)

Another winner (sorry no pictures-they were too good to last long enough!) for our family's favorite fall dessert was a chocolate chip pumpkin cookie adapted from several online sources.

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies

2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 cup Libby Pumpkin Pie Mix canned
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Sift together first 4 ingredients in a small bowl. In another larger mixing bowl beat softened butter until creamy. Add sugar and blend. Add egg, pumpkin, and vanilla, blend well. Gradually add flour mixture and blend. Stir in chocolate chips. Bake at 375F on a greased cookie sheet for 10 minutes.