{This is just a little "spin off" of my PoeFam blog that is a home for my domestic attempts...recipes, house stuff and more! It's named after my mom's mom, Miriam Elizabeth Davis...better known as "Gackey!" She was a lovely lady and oh so domestic. So, follow me as I try to fill her shoes...or, better yet, wear her apron!}

Thursday, December 30, 2010

My Christmas Obsession

I think this Christmas I realized my obsession with peppermint flavor. Starbucks’ Peppermint Mochas have to be a piece of heaven on earth…and this creamer…
CM_PeppermintMocha …I literally could drink it! I put it in my coffee…on my ice cream …and in chocolate milk! It’s YUMMY and I’m so sad they only make it at Christmastime.

So, when Meredith served this recipe at our Christmas playgroup party, I couldn’t wait to make it for myself. It’s yummy…and so very rich. Enjoy.

Slickpaw's Christmas 2010 029Brownie Cheesecake Peppermint Goodness

1 tube of refrigerated sugar cookie dough
1 box brownie mix
2 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 1/2 c. white chocolate chips
2 tsp. peppermint extract, divided
4 candy canes, crushed

- Make brownies according to the directions on the box and add 1 teaspoon of peppermint extract.
- Bake brownies according to the directions on the box. Set aside to cool.
- Spray a 9x13 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray and press cookie dough evenly on the bottom.
- Bake dough at 350 degrees until lightly brown on top. Set aside to cool.
- Once brownies have cooled, remove all edges. Scrape the rest of the baked brownies into a large bowl.
- Combine brownies with cream cheese and mix until thoroughly combined.
- Spread mixture evenly over cooled baked cookie dough.
- Over a double broiler, melt white chocolate and gently stir in 1 teaspoon of peppermint extract.
- Spread melted chocolate over brownie mix and sprinkle with crushed candy canes.
- Once chocolate has hardened cut into bars and enjoy!

Our Christmas Soup Buffet

Our Christmas meal was not at all traditional this year…and I loved that. It made our time in the kitchen much less and our time playing with new toys much more! :) … We opted for a “soup buffet”…including Taco Soup, Chicken & Dumplings and this gumbo.

And, the best part…we had yummy leftovers for days! Christmas 2010 099 
Chicken Gumbo

1 whole rotisserie chicken
1 tablespoon flour
1 cup chicken broth
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 (1 ounce) can tomato sauce
4 stalks celery, diced
1 large onion, diced
1 bag frozen okra
4 tablespoons gumbo file (found in the spices at Kroger)
1 teaspoon cayenne
salt and pepper
hot cooked rice

Sauté onion and celery until tender.
In a Dutch oven or large pot make a roux out of flour and chicken broth.
Add the tomatoes and tomato sauce along with shredded chicken.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Add file gumbo, cayenne and okra
Simmer for 30 minutes.
Serve over hot, cooked rice.
Christmas 2010 101

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Enchiladas with a Spoon

A few months ago, we had samples of this at our church’s mom’s group. And, when I remade it at home, it was a HIT! Gotta love easy…and yummy!!!…and a good smelling house in the meantime as it cooks all day. Enjoy!
Pumpkin Patch 2010 063

Chicken Enchilada Soup

1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 (10 oz.) package frozen corn
1 small onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 (10 oz.) can mild enchilada sauce
1 (10 oz.) can cream of chicken soup
1 1/2 cup milk
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup shredded pepperjack cheese
tortilla chips

In slow cooker, combine beans, tomatoes, corn, onion and bell pepper. Place chicken on top. In large bowl, combine enchilada sauce and soup. Whisk in milk until smooth and pour over ingredients in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Remove chicken and chop; return to show cooker. Serve and top with cheese, broken tortilla chips. *and sour cream, if desired.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

A New Christmas Tradition

When I saw this recipe on Annalee’s blog, I couldn't wait to try it! I knew my hot chocolate lover would LOVE it. But, little did I know that it would become my newest obsession! We made it with french vanilla creamer and peppermint mocha creamer. I truly can’t decide which one I like best. And, it has been the perfect Christmas treat around our house…a new tradition, for sure!!! I can’t wait to share it with all of our friends for years to come!

{I halved the recipe and it still made a BUNCH!}

Quinn’s {NEW} Favorite Hot Chocolate

8 C powdered milk
1 box Nestle quick (1 lb. 8 oz. box)
4 C powdered sugar
2- 8 oz. jar flavored coffeemate creamer (powder)
(whichever flavor you buy will be the flavor of your mix)
11 oz. regular coffeemate creamer (powder
1/2 t salt

mix all the above ingredients together in a LARGE mixing bowl.

Store in an airtight container.

Mix together 1/4 C cocoa mix with 1 C hot water and enjoy!

 Dec. 16 002   Dec. 16 003 Dec. 16 004
Dec. 16 009

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Scrumptious Stackers

I am a HUGE fan of this appetizer in restaurants. And, after tonight, I have no idea why I’ve never thought to do it on my own! This was EASY and YUMMMMMMYYYY! I think I could have eaten the whole plate. But, I kindly saved some for our guests. And, you can bet that we’ll be making this again and again!Dec. 16 051 Caprese Stackers

2 vine ripened tomatoes (washed + patted dry)
15 to 20 leaves of basil (washed + patted dry)
1 lb fresh mozzarella
balsamic vinegar for drizzling
olive oil for drizzling

Slice tomatoes and mozzarella into 1/4 inch slices. Stack tomato, mozzarella and basil on each plate in an alternating pattern.  Be sure to finish off with a small basil leaf on top.  Drizzle each stack first with balsamic vinegar then with olive oil. Pepper each stack and salt to taste.  Dec. 16 049

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Take THIS to your next Christmas party…

This easy little cake will not disappoint. We enjoyed it for breakfast & dessert and I loved the hint of peppermint that you would taste. Sadly, I don’t have a picture of the inside, but it has a cute red swirl running through it. It’s a great thing to take to all of those Christmas parties that are filling up your calendar! beg. of Dec 002

Candy Cane Cake

1 box SuperMoist white cake mix
Water, vegetable oil and egg whites called for on cake mix box
1/2 teaspoon red food color
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract

White Icing
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon milk or water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla, if desired

Crushed candy canes or crushed hard peppermint candies, if desired

  1. Heat oven to 325°F. Generously grease and flour 12-cup fluted tube cake pan. Make cake batter as directed on box. Pour about 2 cups batter into pan. Into small bowl, pour about 3/4 cup batter; stir in food color and peppermint extract. Carefully pour pink batter over white batter in pan. Carefully pour remaining white batter over pink batter.
  2. Bake as directed on box or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes. Turn pan upside down onto cooling rack or heatproof serving plate; remove pan. Cool cake completely, about 1 hour.
  3. In small bowl, mix icing ingredients. If necessary, stir in additional milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until smooth and spreadable. Spread icing over cake. Sprinkle top with crushed candy. Store loosely covered.

You’re Never Too Old for a Candy Cane

I feel like when I think of Candy Canes, I think of kids enjoying them at Christmastime. But, who said they were just for kids!!! I love them too. And, for our Advent Devotional Party, my friend Carrie made these for all of us to enjoy! And they were YUMMMMMMYYYY and oh so cute! I have a feeling I’ll be making them again! …I love them for the kid in all of us! :) beg. of Dec 007Candy Cane Brownie Lollipops

1 pkg (18-21 oz) fudge brownie mix (plus ingredients to make brownies)
24 candy canes
10 oz chocolate-flavored almond bark
Additional decorations such as red sprinkles/crushed candy canes

1. Line Medium Sheet Pan (or 9-in. by 13-in. metal pan) with a 13-in. piece of Parchment Paper; lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. Prepare brownie mix according to package directions; pour batter into pan.Bake 30 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs attached. Remove from oven; cool 20 minutes or until still slightly warm.

2. Meanwhile, cut straight ends of candy canes off to form 4½-in. sticks. Place candy cane tops into baggie and crush; set aside.

3. Scoop brownie into 24 rounded scoops, packing brownie into scoop using hands.
(Entire brownie will be used.) Roll brownie scoops into smooth balls. Insert candy cane sticks into centers of balls, mounding brownie around each stick to secure. Pinch each brownie ball where candy cane and top of ball meet.

4. Place almond bark into bowl, microwave according to package directions until smooth. Spoon
melted bark evenly over each brownie ball, turning to coat completely. Be sure to coat where candy cane stick meets brownie ball. Allow excess bark to drip off. Dip into reserved crushed candy canes or sprinkles and stand upright on a piece of Parchment Paper. Repeat with remaining almond bark, lollipops and crushed candy. Let stand until set. Place into miniature cupcake liners.

beg. of Dec 008

“A New Starbucks Flavor” Dessert

When I made this dessert a few weeks ago, our friend James said that it could be the new Starbucks flavor! I took that as a compliment! :) And, I loved it…very different and perfect for Fall!
Thanksgiving 2010 006Chocolate-Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

1-1/4  cups  graham cracker crumbs
1/4  cup  sugar
1/3  cup  butter, melted
2  8-ounce packages  cream cheese, softened
1-3/4  cups  sugar
3    eggs
1  cup  canned pumpkin
1/2  teaspoon  pumpkin pie spice
1/2  teaspoon  vanilla
1/4  teaspoon  salt
6  ounces  semisweet chocolate, cut up, or 1 cup semisweet chocolate pieces
2  tablespoons  butter
1-1/4  cups  sour cream
1/4  cup  sugar

 1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly grease a 13x9x2-inch baking pan; set aside. In a medium bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs and 1/4 cup sugar. Stir in the 1/3 cup melted butter. Press mixture evenly into bottom of the prepared baking pan; set aside.

2. In a large bowl, combine cream cheese and the 1-3/4 cups sugar. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, beating on low speed after each addition just until combined. Beat in pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla, and salt on low speed just until combined. Remove 1-1/4 cups of the mixture.

3. In a small heavy saucepan, combine the 6 ounces chocolate and the 2 tablespoons butter. Cook and stir over low heat until melted. Whisk chocolate mixture into the 1-1/4 cups pumpkin mixture. Pour over crust, spreading evenly. Bake for 15 minutes.

4. Carefully pour the remaining pumpkin mixture over baked chocolate layer, spreading evenly. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes more or until filling is puffed and center is set. Cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes.

5. In a small bowl, combine sour cream and 1/4 cup sugar. Gently spread over cookies. Cool completely. Cover and chill for at least 3 hours. Cut into bars. Makes 24 to 36 bars.