Apple Butter Cookies

Every October we go to our local pumpkin patch to get pumpkins for the house. Some years we carve them, some years we don’t, but we always pick up a couple of jars of apple butter while we are there. I was in the mood to make some cookies the other day and found this recipe. These cookies are so good, slightly chewy with a wonderful apple butter flavor. My oldest son called them a national treasure, so I knew it was a winner.

  • 1/4 cup butter, I used salted
  • 1/4 cup apple butter
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup cinnamon sugar, for rolling

Cream together butter, apple butter, and sugar. Mix in egg, and vanilla. Mix until well combined. In a medium bowl, combine cinnamon, flour, baking soda, and cream of tartar.  Slowly add dry ingredients to butter mixture. Mix until dough forms. Place into fridge and chill for 2 hours. When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375. Using a 2 tablespoon scoop, roll cookies into a ball and roll each ball in cinnamon sugar. Place cookies onto ungreased baking sheet. Bake 11-13 minutes, or until the bottoms have started to brown. Move baked cookies to wire rack to cool. 

PB&J Scones

Another scone recipe! Are you ready? If you are like the rest of my family and not as excited about scones as I am that’s okay, I have enough excitement for all of us. This scone had the perfect balance of peanut butter to jam, although I would recommend using a thicker jam, a la Bonne Marie, so it doesn’t get lost in the center.

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup cold, salted butter, preferably frozen
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter chips
  • 1/4 cup jam of choice

Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Set aside. Grate the frozen butter on a box cheese grater, then mix into your dry ingredients. Add in the peanut butter chips. In a medium bowl whisk together 1/2 cup heavy cream and peanut butter. Make a well in the center of the dry mixture and pour the wet ingredients into the well. Mix the dough together using a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. It should have a slightly dry texture and hold together, but not be crumbly. Add an additional 1-2 tablespoons of cream if the dough seems too dry. Place the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and make two balls. Flatten each ball into a circle about 2/3 of an inch thick. Spread a layer of jam onto the bottom disk, making sure to leave about 1/2 an inch border around the outside edge of the circle. Using a knife or a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 8 wedges. Place the wedges onto the prepared baking sheet and sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly golden.

Chocolate Peppermint Scones

Last Christmas I bought some Ghirardelli peppermint baking chips but hadn’t even opened the bag all year. As we have gotten into fall I’ve been craving those holiday-esque flavors, and with my current scone obsession I wanted to try a scone using them. I’m really pleased with how this scone turned out, it was my first foray into cobbling together my own recipe based on what end result I was hoping to achieve and it turned out tasty!

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cold and cut into small cubes
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 cup peppermint baking chips
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream (you may need 1-2 tablespoons more depending on how the dough comes together)
  • additional white sugar for sprinkling on top of the scones

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and line a baking tray with a baking mat or parchment paper. Place flour, cocoa, sugar, salt, baking powder in a large bowl and whisk to combine. Grate the cold butter on a box grater and mix into the dry ingredients. Add the peppermint chips and stir very briefly to evenly distribute. Place the eggs and 1/2 cup heavy cream into a bowl and beat lightly with a fork. Add the egg mixture into your flour mix and stir gently, until a soft, crumbly dough forms. You want it to hold if you press the dough together, but not be sticky and wet. If the mixture is still too crumbly, add in the extra cream, 1 tablespoon at a time. (I live at altitude and added 2 tablespoons and probably could’ve added one more.)  Tip the dough onto your prepared baking tray and press into a large disc, around half an inch thick. Use a sharp knife or pizza cutter to cut the disc of dough into 6-8 wedges. At this stage you can leave the scones cut but together, or use a spatula to spread the scones around the baking tray with a 2 inch gap in between each one. Sprinkle some white sugar onto the top of each scones and then place in the oven for 13-17 minutes. (I left mine in a round for about 14 minutes because my mixture was pretty crumbly, then I separated them and baked for about 5 more minutes. You’ll know they are done when they are risen, golden around the edges and sound light when you tap on the top.

Blueberry Lemon White Chocolate Scones

One of my best friends in the world loves blueberry lemon desserts. When I started making batches and batches of scones, she requested one with that flavor combination and I knew exactly which recipe I would use as a base. This recipe is based on the cranberry white chocolate scones on my site and with the addition of lemon extract they turned out really well. Because I don’t put a glaze on my scones, it is very hard to get a prominent lemon flavor from juice alone, so I added lemon extract and it did the trick.

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cold and cut into small cubes
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips/chunks
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries; frozen won’t leak as much into the batter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream (you may need 1-2 tablespoons more depending on how the dough comes together)
  • 3/4 teaspoon lemon extract
  • additional white sugar for sprinkling on top of the scones

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and line a baking tray with a baking mat or parchment paper. Place flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and cubes of butter into a large bowl and rub the butter into the flour with your fingers until you have a coarse breadcrumb texture. Some pea sized lumps of butter is fine. (I was using frozen butter so I grated mine with a cheese grater.) Add the white chocolate chips and blueberries and stir very briefly to evenly distribute. Place the eggs, heavy cream and extract into a bowl and beat lightly with a fork. Add the egg mixture into your flour mix and stir gently, until a soft, crumbly dough forms. You want it to hold if you press the dough together, but not be sticky and wet. If the mixture is still too crumble, add in the extra cream, 1 tablespoon at a time. (I live at altitude and added 2 tablespoons and probably could’ve added one more.)  Tip the dough onto your prepared baking tray and press into a large disc, around half an inch thick. Use a sharp knife or pizza cutter to cut the disc of dough into 6-8 wedges. At this stage you can leave the scones in a circle, or use a spatula to spread the scones around the baking tray with a 2 inch gap in between each one. Sprinkle some white sugar onto the top of each scones and then place in the oven for 13-17 minutes. (I left mine in a round for about 14 minutes because my mixture was pretty crumbly, then I separated them and baked for about 5 more minutes. You’ll know they are done when they are risen, golden around the edges and sound light when you tap on the top.

Easy-Peasy Homemade Biscuits

The other night I was making dinner and since it was pot roast, it really needed some bread to go with it. I knew I wouldn’t have time for rolls, so after a quick internet search I found this recipe. Start to finish it took 20 minutes and they tasted amazing. I cut the recipe in half because I didn’t want leftovers, but if you are feeding a crowd definitely make the full recipe. Recipe and photo courtesy of momontimeout.com.

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 3/4 cup COLD butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup whole milk

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. The secret to excellent biscuits is super cold butter. I like to grate my butter on a box grater to get uniform size pieces of butter, then just toss it into the flour. Add in the milk and egg and mix just until the ingredients are combined. The dough will be sticky but don’t keep working it. You should be able to see the butter pieces in the dough. Turn the dough out onto a generously floured surface. Sprinkle some flour on to the top of dough so it won’t stick to your fingers and knead 10-15 times. If the dough is super sticky just sprinkle on some additional flour. Pat the dough out to 3/4 – 1 inch thickness and cut with a biscuit cutter or glass. I ended up with nine this time but depending on who is snacking on biscuit dough, I can get up to 12 biscuits.  Place the biscuits on a lightly greased baking sheet or parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown on top. For extra yumminess, brush the tops of the biscuits with melted butter.

Salted Peanut Butter Cookies

I saw an article not too long ago that ranked 4 different peanut butter cookies, and this recipe from Ovenly was the hands down winner. Naturally this meant I had to make this cookie and see if I agreed. After making this cookie, I will agree that it is very good. With only four ingredients it comes together very quickly and baked up well. My only note on this recipe would be to not eat this cookie hot out of the oven. It tastes like hot peanut butter, and you don’t get an opportunity to enjoy the sweetness this cookie has to offer. It was light years better after it had cooled completely. Also, the recipe states that while you can use natural peanut butter in this recipe, Skippy, Jif or Peter Pan are the preferred brands.

  • 1 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 3/4 cup smooth peanut butter
  • coarse salt to finish

Preheat the oven to 350. Line a rimmed sheet pan with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, vigorously whisk together the light brown sugar and eggs until incorporated. Whisk in the vanilla extract. Add the peanut butter and mix with a spatula until smooth and completely incorporated, and until no ribbons of peanut butter can be seen. You know the dough is ready when it has the consistency of Play-Doh. Using a scoop or a spoon, form the dough into 12 approximately 2-inch (2- to 2 1/4-ounce) balls and place them on the prepared rimmed sheet pan. For smaller cookies, use a heaping tablespoon. Sprinkle the dough balls lightly with coarse-grained sea salt just before baking. Bake for about 16 minutes, turning the rimmed sheet pan once halfway through baking (for smaller cookies, bake for 14-16 minutes). When finished, the cookies will be lightly golden and cracked on top. Let cool completely before serving. You can bake these cookies as soon as the dough is prepared, but they will retain their shape better if you freeze them for 15 minutes before baking. 

Apple Pecan Scones

PANA9600.I think I might have a problem.  A scone problem. Currently there are 7 different types of scones in my freezer, and I have variety to satisfy any particular craving on any particular day. The thing I like about them is how well they reheat. It takes away all of the worry about trying to finish them before they go bad because you can just individually wrap them and store them in the freezer. This latest recipe filled a niche I didn’t have yet, and that is the pecans. It adds an earthiness that I enjoy and it pairs really nicely with the apple. I toasted my pecans before mixing them into the batch but that is an entirely optional step.

  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup butter, preferably frozen
  • 1/2 large apple, pealed and chopped into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped, toasted
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • cinnamon sugar for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 425. In a large mixing bowl, whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg together. Grate your frozen butter with a box cheese grater, then mix into the dry ingredients. Add the chopped apples and pecans, stir. Pour in the heavy cream, and stir until incorporated. Once the dough comes together, form into a circle, sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar, then cut into 8 pieces and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place in the oven and bake for 15-18 minutes or until browned. If you want,  you can mix together half a cup of powdered sugar with two tablespoons of milk to form a glaze and drizzle over the cooked scones.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Chip Scones

IMG_20200812_095234_01With fall right around the corner I knew I would need to find a pumpkin scone recipe to indulge in. The first place I checked was my go-to site, cookiesandcups.com.  Of course she had a fabulous scone recipe, but I took mine down a slightly different path and added cinnamon chips to it; as well as left off the icing. I have explained on previous recipes that I like to store my scones in the freezer and that doesn’t lend itself to icing. I judge every recipe on here as if it didn’t have the frosting and it absolutely has to taste yummy without it. The cinnamon chips in this scone just reinforce the fall flavors and add that little bit of sweetness without being too much.

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup cold, salted butter, preferably frozen
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup cinnamon chips, (I found mine at Walmart)
  • 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar (like Sugar in the Raw) for garnish

Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Set aside. Grate the frozen butter on a box cheese grater, then mix into your dry ingredients. Add in the cinnamon chips. In a medium bowl whisk together 1/2 cup heavy cream, pumpkin puree, and pumpkin pie spice. Make a well in the center of the dry mixture and pour the wet ingredients into the well. Mix the dough together using a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. It should have a slightly dry texture and hold together, but not be crumbly. Add an additional 1-2 tablespoons of cream if the dough seems too dry. Place the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and form it into a ball. Flatten the ball into a circle about 1 1/2- inches thick. Using a knife or a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 8 wedges. Place the wedges onto the prepared baking sheet and brush with the remaining 2 tablespoons heavy cream. Sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly golden.

Roasted Tomato Salsa

Roasted-Tomato-Salsa-7This summer we tried our hand at gardening and on a whim I bought three tomato plants. They took root much better than I planned and I ended up with a wonderful tomato harvest. I have one other salsa recipe but it uses canned tomatoes so I knew I would need something different for fresh tomatoes. I first tried roasting the vegetables over direct flame, but I really didn’t like the way it turned out, so the second time I tried under a broiler in the oven and it worked beautifully. This recipe was so so good.

  • 2 pounds Roma tomatoes, halved lengthwise
  • 6 unpeeled garlic cloves
  • 2 chiles, I used Anaheim, seeded and halved
  • 1 large white onion, quartered and cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • large handful of cilantro
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice

Preheat your broiler to high. Place all your veggies and the unpeeled garlic skin side up on a roasting pan or cookie sheet. Broil for 6-8 minutes, or until the tomatoes and chiles have blistered and blackened pretty thoroughly on top. Remove pan from the oven, and peel and discard the skin from the garlic cloves.  Transfer the tomatoes, garlic, onion and chiles to the bowl of a food processor or blender.  At this point (if you’re feeling impatient and hungry), you can either go ahead and add in the remaining ingredients and puree the salsa until it’s smooth while it’s warm.  Or you can transfer the roasted veggies to the refrigerator and let them chill until cooled, then proceed with adding in the remaining ingredients and pureeing the salsa until smooth. Taste, and season with extra salt or lime juice if needed.  Serve immediately, or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 days.

Fruit and Peanut Butter Protein Bars

pbproteinbars-2My husband’s preferred snack is a homemade protein bar, so I’m constantly on the lookout for a good one. I found this on Pinterest and it is so versatile. You can add any kind of dried fruit you want, even chocolate chips or nuts. The chocolate topping is totally optional, and my husband actually prefers it without.

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/4 honey
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2/3 cup vanilla protein powder
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1/3 cup dried fruit of your choice
  • 1/3 cup dessicated or shredded coconut, optional
  • 2 tablespoons chocolate chips + 1 teaspoon coconut oil, optional

In a sauce pan, combine the peanut butter, honey and coconut oil. Heat until thoroughly mixed and smooth, then remove from heat and add in the vanilla. In a large bowl, combine the peanut butter mixture and the protein powder until smooth. Then add the oats, chia seeds, dried fruit and coconut if using. Once the mixture is fully combined, press into a lined 8×4 loaf pan and refrigerate for at least an hour. Cut into bars and store tightly sealed in the fridge.