Saturday, December 17, 2011


 I love gingersnaps! We made these for Christmas with pretzel antlers and a M&M red nose and brown eyes. These are also amazing with pumpkin ice cream.

¾ C butter          1 C Sugar
1 egg                     ¼ C Molasses
2 ¼ C Flour         2 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt             ½ tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. cloves        ¼ tsp. ginger

Make into balls and roll in sugar.  Bake 375˚ 7-9 mins. (Unless you have a crazy oven you really don't want these to bake much longer than the 9 minutes. They need to be a little under-baked looking so they turn out soft in the middle when they're cooled)

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Royal Icing

This recipe comes courtesy of Alton Brown and We used it as icing for gingerbread houses and it worked really well. It dried fast and held even the heavy candy on really well. My favorite part was it was very water-soluble and much easier to clean out of the frosting bags than a Crisco-based birthday cake frosting. Happy Decorating!


  • 3 ounces pasteurized egg whites (the ones that come in a carton are pasteurized)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups confectioners' sugar


In large bowl of stand mixer combine the egg whites and vanilla and beat until frothy. Add confectioners' sugar gradually and mix on low speed until sugar is incorporated and mixture is shiny. Turn speed up to high and beat until mixture forms stiff, glossy peaks. This should take approximately 5 to 7 minutes. Add food coloring, if desired. For immediate use, transfer icing to pastry bag or heavy duty storage bag and pipe as desired. If using storage bag, clip corner. Store in airtight container in refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Soft Rolls--For Thanksgiving!

1 3/4 C warm milk
1/2 C butter or margaring
1 T yeast, softened in 1/4 C warm water
1/2 C sugar
1/2 C instant dry potatoes
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
4-5 C bread flour (enough for a soft dough)

Mix in order given. Knead for about 8 minutes. Let rise 1 time. Punch down. Divide into two and roll into 10 inch circles. Brush circles with butter. Using pizza cutter, cut dough into about 18 triagnles. Starting at the wide end, roll up like a crescent roll. Let rise and then bake at 375 for 12-15 minutes. Makes around 3 dozen rolls. These also freeze well if you freeze them individually on a cookie sheet and then put them in a bag.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Simple Truffles

These are so simple. They look elegant but truly take no talent. I love to make them and give them as a gift for VT and neighbors. You can't tell the filling is oreo cookies. It tastes like some lucscious truffle filling.

1 pkg (8 oz) Cream Cheese, softened
1 pkg. (16.6 oz) Oreo cookies, finely crushed (about 3 Cups)
Approx. 2 to 3 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Mix cream cheese and 3 cups cookie crumbs until well blended.
Shape into (1-inch) balls. Dip in melted chocolate; place on waxed paper-covered baking sheet. (To melt chocolate put in microwaveable bowl and microwave on HIGH for 2 minutes or until the chocolate is completely melted, stirring every 30 seconds.
Refrigerate 1 hour or until firm. Store in tightly covered container in fridge.

Sister Brenda Carlos (Melissa's Mother-in-law)
Philippines Cauayan Mission

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Crumb Topped Apple Pie

This is a recipe copied from Taste of Home Magazine. It came from a lady named Virginia Olsen who makes about 500 of these pies each holiday season! Luckily this recipe only makes one. It really was the best apple pie I ever had. Hope you enjoy it!

1 1/4 C all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 C shortening
1/4 C cold water

5-7 large tart apples, peeled and thinly sliced (I always think apple goods taste better when you mix a few varieties of apples together)
2/3 C sugar
5 tsp. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

2/3 C all-purpose flour
1/2 C sugar
1/4 C cold butter

1. In a large bowl, combine flour and salt; cut in the shortening until crumbly. Gradually add water, tossing with a fork until dough forms a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. This makes the crust much easier to handle.

2. Roll out crust to fit a 9 inch pie plate. Trim and flute the edges.

3. Combine all filling ingredients and transfer to the crust. I said 5-7 apples in the ingredients because it really depends on how high you want your pie to turn out. Remember that the apples will shrink considerably when you cook them, so I like to use more apples.

4. For topping combine flour and sugar in a small bowl; cut in butter until crumbly. Sprinkle over filling. Bake at 450 for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 and bake for 50-60 minutes longer or until topping is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool on a wire rack. Make sure you have vanilla ice cream nearby!!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Best Sugar Cookies Ever

These are the best sugar cookies. We roll them a little thick and they stay soft for days! Be careful not to over bake them (you really don't want them to brown at all). Enjoy!

7 C flour
2 t soda
1 t salt
1 C margarine or shortening
2 C sugar
2 egg
2 t vanilla
1 C sour cream

Mix dry ingredients together. Cream wet ingredients. Add all together and roll out, cut into shapes. Bake at 375 for 10 minutes.

1/3 C soft butter
1 1/2 t vanilla
3 C powdered sugar
about 2 T milk

Blend butter and sugar. Add vanilla and milk and desired food coloring. Beat until smooth.

Saturday, October 22, 2011


This makes delicious soft gingersnaps that are perfect plain or with pumpkin ice cream!  It makes around two dozen.

¾ C butter           1 C Sugar
1 egg                    ¼ C Molasses
2 ¼ C Flour         2 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt            ½ tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. cloves       ¼ tsp. ginger

Make into balls and roll in sugar.  Bake 375˚ 7-9 mins. Do not overbake or they will be too hard and more like the store bought kind.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Doctor Richard Hardy's High-Fiber cookie

Hello, I'm Sister Carlos, Melissa's mother-in-law and my husband is currently serving as the President of the Philippines Cauayan Mission.
This is a great cookie to serve for breakfast or other snacks. I got the recipe from Sister Edwards the wife of our Area President here in the Philippines. She got it from Sister Jensen. Anyway, everyone loves these cookies.

From Sis. Lona Lee Jensen, wife of Elder Jay E. Jensen

Doctor Richard Hardy's High-Fiber cookie (for missionaries and everyone else who needs high fiber and low sugar cookies)

Heat together to soften fruit:
1 cup raisins or cut up prunes ( dried apricots, craisens are good too!)
1 cup water
Blend and mix with water and fruit:
1 cup oil or margarine
1 cup sugar
Add to previous ingredients:
3 eggs
2 cups grated carrots or Zucchini squash (I do 1 to 11/2 cups carrots or zucchini and then I add a half cup to a cup of mashed banana, or crushed pineapple or grated apple)
1 cup All Bran cereal (any flaky type cereal will do)
Finally add to all of the above:
2 cups Whole Wheat flour (I can’t get whole wheat here and so I use regular)
2/3 tsp Baking soda
2/3 tsp salt
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
1 cup chopped nuts
2 cups 1 Minute uncooked oatmeal cereal (I use old fashioned oats)

Bake at 350 degrees for about 12 minutes.
*They will be very moist, therefore do not store in a covered container, unless storing in the refrigerator. I leave mine on the cupboard, uncovered, until they get dried out some (up to a couple of days, maybe, depending on the humidity in your climate).

History of this recipe: In South America, Dr. Richard Hardy served several missions as medical advisor and attended to the needs of the missionaries for many years. He found that they often had problems that were directly related to their diet which lacked fiber. He developed this recipe for them. They can be a breakfast cookie or an snack during the day. They are very moist. They are lower in sugar than most cookie recipes so some people may need to get used to that aspect of them. I personally love them, especially when loaded with nuts.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Cinnamon Bun Pancakes

I cannot take credit for this recipe. It came from The Pioneer Woman's recipe blog. Ree (the Pioneer Woman) has fabulous (albeit not always low fat) recipes. Anyway, these pancakes were really good and of course the kids appreciated that they could have frosting for breakfast...

Cinnamon Bun Pancakes
  • 1-1/2 cup All-purpose Flour
  • 3 Tablespoons White Sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 4 teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1 Tablespoon Cinnamon
  • 2 whole Eggs Beaten
  • 1 cup + 1 T Milk (depending on how thick you like them)
  • 2 Tablespoons Corn Syrup
  • 1/4 cup Butter, Melted
  • 1 Tablespoon Vanilla
In medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and cinnamon with a whisk. Whisk well to make sure everything is combined.
In separate large bowl, beat together eggs, milk, corn syrup, butter and vanilla. Stir in flour mixture.
Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium/low heat. Pour about 1/4 cup batter onto griddle. Brown on both sides. Serve warm with icing drizzled over the top.

Maple Butter Icing:
  • 1 cup Powdered Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Butter, Melted
  • Dash Of Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Maple Syrup
  • 1/4 cup Milk (more If Needed)
I thought this frosting would be good with a whip cream base or with a little cream cheese too...

Monday, March 14, 2011

Quick Pizza Crust

This makes a good soft crust that is fairly thin. We love it plain or with herbs added.

1 C warm water
1 1/2 t yeast
1 t salt
1 T olive oil
1 T sugar or honey
2 C flour (We usually use white whole wheat but it is also good with plain white or a mix of the two)

Mix all together and let rest for 15 minutes. Roll, top and bake at 500 (yes, really that hot) for 11-13 minutes. Watch it close, because this is obviously a very hot oven temp! Enjoy!

Herbed Whole Wheat Pizza Crust

This is a recipe from the King Arthur Flour cookbook Whole Grain Baking. The recipes have been really great so far and of course they all involve King Arthur Flours which are the best! (Sidenote: All the recipes are whole grain but not necessarily low fat...)

3 3/4 C white whole wheat flour
1 T plus 1 1/2 t instant yeast
1 1/2 C cold water
1 T honey
1 T olive oil
2 t salt
1 T dried oregano
1 T dried basil or rosemary
1/2 t cayenne pepper (I left this out for my kids' sake)

Measure 2 cups of the flour into a medium mixing bowl and stir in the yeast. Combine the water and honey, add to the flour mixture and stir to mix well. Cover with plastic and let rest for 1 hour.

Stir in the olive oil, salt, herbs and pepper, then add the remaining 1 1/4 cups flour. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 5 minutes until shiny and elastic but still soft. (I just left mine in the mixer for three or so minutes with the dough hook.) Resist the temptation to keep adding flour--this should be softer than bread dough. The whole grains will also soak up more of the water in the dough as it rests. Divide in two and let rest for 1 1/2 hours. Roll into two pizzas, top & bake at 450 for 12+ minutes and voila!

PS: I recently discovered that my kids love "cheese and rosemary pizza", which is actually this crust recipe with no sauce & topped with finely chopped spinach and cheese. Ha!

Yogurt Waffles

I am always looking for ways to reduce or eliminate the oil in recipes and substitute yogurt instead. You can do it with a lot of sweet breads with success, so when I came across this recipe I decided to give it a try. They turned out great! We ate them with some fresh raspberry jam & cream although I'm sure they'd be good with anything!

  • 3/4 C white whole wheat flour
  • 1 C oat flour (oats ground up in the blender)
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups (16 ounces) vanilla yogurt (I used 1 vanilla & 1 mixed berry)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 T butter, melted


  • In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Beat in yogurt, butter, eggs & butter until smooth. Bake in a preheated waffle iron golden brown. Top with flavored yogurt and fruit. Makes 4-6 waffles.