Friday, November 30, 2012

ABC: Ginger Crackles

This year the ABC group has been baking from The Weekend Baker by Abigail Dodge.  I have enjoyed all the recipes that we have done and will continue to bake from it even though this is our last recipe from this cookbook as a group.  Next year we will be baking from the King Arthur Flour site...that should be fun!  I love all the recipes that I get from there. 
Anyway, back to the Ginger Crackles.  This recipe sure was simple and easy!  Abby suggests that you double the recipe and freeze some to have on hand.  That certainly would be easy enough to do and you could have a nice little treat for when you needed it or wanted it. 

They are soft on the inside and the outside has a nice little crunch from the sugar coating.  They are really quite delicious!

Pretty...aren't they?  They taste as good as they look!

These would be a nice addition to your Christmas cookie platter.  You can get the recipe on Abby's website.  Click here.
I anxiously await our ABC oven trips of 2013!
Until then....
Be Sweet!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Quick Skillet Snack Cake: Baked Sunday Morning

We were suppose to do grits this week but I never have grits in the house so I opted to do a "make-up" recipe.  This snack cake was baked in a cast iron skillet and is a nice chocolate treat.  The cake was very dense and rich and the frosting was light and fudgy.  I may have baked it just a tad too long because I thought the cake was just a bit dry but still very tasty!  We loved it!  If you would like the recipe go here
And if you would like to see what I was suppose to do and what all the other wonderful bakers did take a peek here
Until next week...


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Frosted Pumpkin Spice Cookies

I had some leftover pumpkin from the pumpkin tart that I made and thought that it would be good to make some pumpkin cookies to take to work.  I found this recipe on the baker chickThe cookie has a nice spicy flavor and is topped with a cinnamon cream cheese frosting.  I took it just one step further and added a candied pecan.  These would be a good addition to the Thanksgiving dessert table.

Give these a try! 
They are very simple! 
I hope you like them as much as I did.
soft frosted pumpkin spice cookies
Makes 3 dozen
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup softened butter
1/2 cup softened cream cheese
2-3 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. ground cinnamon


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and salt; set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, cream together the 1/2 cup of butter and white sugar. Add pumpkin, egg, and 1 teaspoon vanilla to butter mixture, and beat until creamy. Mix in dry ingredients. Drop on cookie sheet by tablespoonfuls; flatten slightly.
3.Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven.
4. Make frosting: cream butter and cream cheese together. Slowly add powdered sugar and mix with an electric mixer until thick and creamy. Add vanilla and cinnamon.
5. When cookies are cooled- spread frosting on top with an offset spatula.

recipe adapted from: All Recipes

candied pecans


  • 2-3/4 cups Diamond of California® Pecan Halves
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened, divided
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Place pecans in a shallow baking pan in a 250° oven for 10
  • minutes or until warmed. Grease a 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan
  • with 1 tablespoon butter; set aside.
  • Grease the sides of a large heavy saucepan with remaining butter; add
  • sugar, water, salt and cinnamon. Cook and stir over low heat until
  • sugar is dissolved. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture
  • comes to a boil. Cover and cook for 2 minutes to dissolve sugar
  • crystals.
  • Cook, without stirring, until a candy thermometer reads 236°
  • (soft-ball stage). Remove from the heat; add vanilla. Stir in warm
  • pecans until evenly coated.
  • Spread onto prepared baking pan. Bake at 250° for 30 minutes,
  • stirring every 10 minutes. Spread on a waxed paper-lined baking
  • sheet to cool. Yield: about 1 pound.


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Baked Sunday Mornings: Caramel Coconut Cluster Bars

The Baked Sunday Morning challenge this week is from the newer cookbook Baked Elements. This cookie, which is actually much more like a candy bar, was not too difficult to make but very time intensive. From toasting the coconut to making the shortbread crust then patiently waiting for the caramel to get to the right temp, waiting 3 hours for them to cool and set and another 15-20 minutes for the chocolate to harden it was an all day affair!
These bars are pretty decadent and rich, the shortbread is quite good, the caramel layer is soft and luscious and the chocolate tops them off quite nicely. I always make the recipe just as it reads the first time, but if I were to make these again I would not make as much caramel, that layer was a bit too thick and it was out of balance with the rest of the flavors. These are suppose to be inspired by the Girl Scout Samoa cookie. I have never had one of those (I am a thin mint gal) so I can't really judge.
All in all these were a pretty tasty treat. They are going to work with my husband tomorrow!! Need to get these babies out of the house!
To get the recipe and to see what the other bakers did with this challenge go here.
As Always

Sunday, November 4, 2012

ABC: Velvety Pumpkin Tart

Autumn is here and the holidays right around the corner.  There is nothing that shouts out Thanksgiving more than a pumpkin pie.  The Avid Bakers Challenge for this month was this Velvety Pumpkin Tart.  We are baking from The Weekend Baker by Abby Dodge.  The cream cheese made this velvety and creamy but I think there was a bit too much sugar...I found it to be a little too sweet.  I was not really fond of the gingersnap crust...I think a pastry crust would have made me happier.  This tart was very easy to put together...gingersnaps are pulverized, sugar and butter added then pressed into a tart pan and baked.  The filling was fast and easy....cream cheese, brown sugar, pumpkin, eggs, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and vanilla mixed together then poured in the crust and baked.  I wanted to gussy it up a little so I added some meringue.  It looks pretty but didn't really need the added sweetness.

Another challenge done. 
Next month we are making Ginger Crackles.

Happy Fall!