Google Amy's Cooking Adventures: October 2012

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween Meal Ideas, Nails, & Pumpkins

Happy Halloween!

Are you packed full of sugar yet?  Are the kids bouncing off the walls?

Here are a few non-sugary meal ideas to get you through until the sugar highs hit!

Oh and also my mummy nails…just because.

Peanut Butter Spiders!  Spread a bit of peanut butter over a Ritz, add 4 pretzel sticks for legs, another dab of PB and a second cracker.  Then a touch of PB on top to stick M&M or raisin eyes!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Cute Monster Cookies & Halloween Costume Reveal!

Today’s post is a bit of a mish-mash.  First off we have some super fun and adorable cookies that we made for my 4 year old’s “Harvest” party (don’t you wish we could still call them Halloween parties and dress up? Ah, the good ol’ days…)

Anywho, for his class party, my son wanted to bring cookies, so I whipped up these super cute Purple People Eaters and Frankensteins (yes, I know Frankenstein was the doctor and this was the monster, but whatevs, it’s Frankenstein to me).  The cookies were inspired by this post here.

A couple days after the school party, we had Trunk or Treat at our church.  If you haven’t been to a Trunk or Treat party before, ours went a little like this.  Everyone met for a sloppy joe dinner in the cafeteria, then games in the gym.  After that, everyone went to their cars and gave out candy to the kids.

Since there was trick or treating, all of the children were dressed in their costumes.  But since we all had themed costumes this year, my husband and I decided to dress up as well! 

Ready for it?

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Butterscotch Hot Chocolate {12 Weeks of Christmas Treats}

During the Christmas season, Eggnog usually reigns king among the yuletide beverages.  But oftentimes, I want something festive and warm. 

Cue Butterscotch Hot Chocolate!  It’s simple to whip up and delicious to enjoy.

Butterscotch Hot Chocolate
An Amy’s Cooking Adventures Original Recipe

1 packet hot cocoa mix
6 oz hot water
1-2 oz milk
1-2 oz buttershots
Whipped cream or marshmallows

Stir the hot cocoa mix into the hot chocolate.  Stir in milk and buttershots to taste.  Top with whipped cream or marshmallows.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Lingerie Cookies for a Cause

The gym where I teach Zumba recently had a bake sale with proceeds going to a local organization that provides funding for breast & other exams for women.

Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, I couldn’t resist breaking out the lingerie cookies!  The cookies were a huge hit at the bake sale and somehow everyone know that I was the one who made the Bra cookies…haha!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Easy Pumpkin Cake {Fall Leaf Cake}

I recently shared a delicious from scratch pumpkin cake, but I know not everyone likes to take the time (or hunt down all of the ingredients) to make a cake from scratch.  So if you’re short on time and only want to use a handful of ingredients, this is the pumpkin cake for you!

This cake was made for a fall themed bridal shower, along with some fun fall cookies!

I chose to use the doctored cake mix for this one because the cake had to travel 300+ miles and wait a day or two before being eaten. 

Did you know that a fondant covered cake can stay fresh for 3 days?  As a rule, I make and decorate my cakes just before pick up, so they’re as fresh as possible.  But in cases like this, it’s nice to know that the cake will still taste great even several days after baking and decorating. 

Because I knew it would be sitting out for a day or two, I also chose to frost this cake in a basic (Crisco based) buttercream frosting, topped with MM Fondant.  If this cake were to be eaten immediately, I would probably frost it in cream cheese frosting instead!  Either way, this cake is a delicious fall treat!

Easy Pumpkin Cake
Recipe from my Aunt, original source unknown

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Link Up & Spook On Features

I’ve been a bad bloggy co-hostess.

I’m supposed to be telling you all about the fun Halloween link up that I’m co-hosting with Jessica at TheThriftiness Miss, but I’ve totally spaces it out!  So let’s make up for lost time mmkay?

Here are some features from the last week or so.  And don’t forget to link up!!  There’s only 1 more week to share all of your favorite Halloween treats, d├ęcor, crafts, & costumes!

DIY Halloween Dishes from TessaCotton
How cute are these - plus they're super inexpensive!

Pumpkin Pincushion at Ana Love Crafts
Super cute - I'd like one for each season, please.

50 Coordinating Halloween Costume Ideas at Full Hand Full Hearts
Love it!  I love dressing my boys in coordinating costumes!

Pumpkin Cheesecake Brownies from Semi-Homemade Mom
Give me a pan & send me to fat camp.  I want these now!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Pumpkin Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

I bake a lot of cakes, but I’m typically a doctor the cake mix type of gal.  But every once in a while, a recipe shows up that looks so incredible that I take the extra time a whip up a cake from scratch.

This cake was so amazing!  It was very reminiscent of carrot cake; moist and dense and delicious with a healthy slathering of cream cheese frosting.

Many times scratch cakes are criticized for being dry, but the pumpkin in this keeps it moist, making this a great place to start if you’ve never made a cake from scratch.  And it scratch cakes still aren’t your style, stay tuned, I’m sharing a cake mix pumpkin cake next!

Pumpkin Cake with Cinnamon Frosting
Adapted from Eat Cake for Dinner

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Snickerdoodles {12 Weeks of Christmas Treats}

This week’s treat in the 12 Week’s of Christmas Treats series is easy and delicious, but one I thought I’d never make.

I’m not sure why, but to me, Snickerdoodles are not the most appetizing looking of cookies.  They’re skinny & flat, so I always thought they were crunchy and hard (but they’re not!)  Also, there’s not fleck of chocolate or frosting in sight (little did I know that the crackly exterior was cinnamon-sugar!)

Nevertheless, at my husband’s request, I added these to my 30x30 bucket list.

These cookies are absolutely fabulous!  They are soft and chewy (thus the title) and melt in your mouth.  We had guests the night I made these and they were raving about how soft and delicious the cookies were! 

I have officially jumped onto the Snickerdoodle bandwagon!  These are going to be one of my new go-to cookies (Christmas or not!)

Recipe Notes:
*If you omit the cream of tartar and shortening, you are making a cinnamon coated sugar cookie, not a sugar cookie.  No substitutions in this recipe!
*The dough will be quite soft (softer than a sugar or peanut butter cookie dough) but do not add extra flour!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Cinnamon Swirl French Toast with Pumpkin Pie Filling

French Toast = Good

Cinnamon Swirl French Toast = Better

Above + Pumpkin Pie Filling = Mind Blowing

ps - don't forget to link up to the Halloween Linky below!

Cinnamon Swirl French Toast with Pumpkin Pie Filling

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Great Pumpkin Cookies

Most of the time if I take the time to frost cookies they are pretty intricate and I do all my work after my boys are in bed.  But sometimes, it’s fun to relinquish control and get a little messy!

I shared this yummy recipe back in the early days of blogging, but felt it needed a little update and sprucing up.  

This recipe is from my mom, who found it on the back of the Libby’s pumpkin can years ago.  When I was young, my mom made these cookies every fall and I always loved them!  These cookies are a beautiful blend of fall flavors with a few mom-approved healthy ingredients packed inside!

Kids love to get messy and help decorate these cookies and they are perfect to bring along to Halloween parties!

I'm guest posting at The Thriftiness Miss today, so stop on by to get the recipe.  And don't forget to say, Hello!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Weeknight Bolognese: SRC

Secret Recipe Club really snuck up on me this month.   Halloween, 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats, and SRC Tribute, and a nasty cold brought today’s reveal much faster than I expected.

But guess what?  I had the pleasure of cooking from Heather’s blog, Join Us, Pull Up a Chair again!  Remember those fantastic Turkey Meatball Gyros from August?  Yes, Heather & I are definitely two peas in a pod.

After perusing Heather’s blog, I found the perfect recipe using all ingredients that were already in my fridge and pantry: Weeknight Bolognese.

In Heather’s recipe, she used ground turkey (I had beef) and homemade sauce (I had jarred).  So be sure to check out the original.  This Bolognese was so delicious that I can’t even imagine how delicious it would be with homemade sauce, so be sure to check out Heather’s recipe for Tangy Tomato Ragu!

So Join Us, and enjoy some Weeknight Bolognese!

Weeknight Bolognese

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Hot Toddy

Hi All.

You may (or may not) have been expecting the second 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats today.  But this past week I got sick.  Nothing horrible, just a nasty cold.

I firmly believe that when you get sick, that’s life’s way of telling you to slow down a bit and not work so hard.  So I listened.

I’m going to get back to some resting, but I plan to get back to those Christmas Treats next week.  But in the meantime, if you’re feeling like me, grab a Hot Toddy right before bed and you’ll sleep like a baby.

The hot tea opens up the sinuses and the honey soothes coughs.  The whiskey warms you right up and the whole thing soothes you right to sleep.


Friday, October 12, 2012

Fall Leaf Apple Pie

Is there anything more perfect than apple pie in the fall?

It’s only better when you can pick the apples fresh from the tree.  It’s especially better if that tree resides in the backyard of your childhood home.  And if four generations can come together to pick those apples.

Yes, apple pie is fall at its best.

The beautiful pie was pinterest inspired.  But the recipe is from my mom.

Wouldn’t this be a beautiful addition to the Thanksgiving table?

Recipe Notes:
*You can mix the apples and sugar mixture together before adding them to the pie, but I add it as I go, because that’s the way my mom makes pie!
*You can skip the milk at the end, but it adds to the browning and overall look of the final product.
*Be sure to use vibrant food coloring – it will brown and fade a bit as it bakes.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Cinnamon-Swirl Bread

There’s nothing better than the smell of fresh bread baking, unless of course it’s cinnamon swirl bread!

I don’t make cinnamon swirl bread often, but when I do, it is a treat for all.  This recipe utilizes my grandma’s two hour bun recipe which produces a light, airy bread in just two hours.

Cinnamon swirl bread is just as easy as the buns with the added step of adding cinnamon sugar in the middle. 

This bread also freezes very well (since it can be hard to eat two loaves of cinnamon swirl bread at once).  Just wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, followed by aluminum foil.  Plus you can put it in a freezer bag for extra protection.  To thaw, just place the wrapped bread on the counter overnight and it will be thawed in time for breakfast.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Halloween Cookie Bark

It’s Monday!  That means another Link Up & Spook On Halloween party with co-hosts with Jessica from The Thriftiness Miss, Kyetra from Sweet Tea & Lollipops, and Ms. Morgan from Ms. Morgan's Reality Check. Don't forget to link up all of your best Halloween crafts and recipes at the bottom of this post!  I can't wait to see what you come up with this week!

Here are a couple of my favorites from last week's link up:

Fabric Pumpkins @ Alderberry Hill
How cute are these?!?  I am digging in my Thanksgiving stuff asap to give this a try!

1 181 682x1024 Fabric Covered Pumpkins

Halloween Popcorn Mix @ Flying on Jess Fuel
Popcorn? Sugar?  Yes, I'll take 4 bowls full, please

This week’s theme is crafts!  I’m not so great at documenting (or photographing crafts) but here’s a little Halloween mash-up of the crafts I’ve done with my boys.

Both ideas came from this month’s issue of Disney Family Fun magazine.  We made skeletons from Qtips and cotton swabs and owls from toilet paper rolls and cupcake liners!   Both were very fun for both boys.

And since cooking is my thing, I can’t walk away without sharing a fun and easy Halloween treat.  Cookie Bark is super easy, and kids love to toss all of the candy on top in the last step.  That is, the candy that doesn’t end up in little mouths!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Easy Snowman Cookies {12 Weeks of Christmas Treats}

Guess what?  It’s 12 weeks until Christmas!  And though I kind of feel like a retail store, rushing through the holidays 3 months prematurely, I thought this would give me a chance to share some fun treats without freaking out right before Christmas.  Plus, these ideas might give you as head start in your cookie exchange planning!

And so today (in the beginning of October) is the first installment of the 12 weeks of Christmas treats.

And ironically enough, we got 4 inches of snow a couple days ago (it melted, thankfully), but it does seem to get me in the Christmas spirit.   My boys are in the Christmas spirit too.  My 4 year old was asking me when Santa was coming, because to him, snow on the ground = Christmas!

To commemorate the first (incredibly early) snowfall of the year AND the 12 weeks of Christmas treats, I thought I’d whip up some very cute and very easy snowmen!

This isn’t so much a recipe as a supply list, since they’re pretty self explanatory.  You can also customize these to your own preferences and based on what’s in your pantry.  Kids also enjoy decorating these little snowmen, so don’t forget to save a few for the kiddies to decorate!



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