Sunday, December 22, 2013

Golden Rum Cake

With Christmas around the corner, if you are looking forward to baking a good cake for yourself as well as for gift-giving, this is an ideal choice. You can be guaranteed to get recipe requests for this semi-homemade creation.
Sending Christmas cheers from my family to yours..
Merry Christmas to you all!

Recipe source: Allrecipes
 1 cup chopped pecans
 1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix
 1 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
 4 eggs
 1/2 cup water
 1/2 cup vegetable oil
 1/2 cup dark rum
 1/2 cup butter
 1/4 cup water
 1 cup white sugar
 1/2 cup dark rum
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease and flour a 10 inch Bundt pan or you can use small bundt pans. Sprinkle chopped nuts evenly over the bottom of the pan.
In a large bowl, combine cake mix and pudding mix. Mix in the eggs, 1/2 cup water, oil and 1/2 cup rum. Blend well. Pour batter over chopped nuts in the pan.
Bake in the preheated oven for 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.
To make the glaze: in a saucepan, combine butter, 1/4 cup water and 1 cup sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat and continue to boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 cup rum.After the cake cools in the pan for about ten minutes, pour the hot glaze around the edges and it goes right down the sides and soaks into the bottom (which will be the top) and the sides of the cake. I also pour some around the inner ring and then a little along the top (which will be the bottom). I let it sit about 30 minutes then invert it.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Ginger Snaps

During December I love baking and when I bake a cookie its almost always some spice loaded ones.These ginger snaps are  one of my must bake cookies. A bite into one of these cookies is all I need to get into holiday spirits.
2½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 & 1/2 to 2 tsp. ground ginger
½ tsp. ground cinnamon
¼ tsp. ground cloves
¼ tsp. salt
2/3 cup canola oil
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup molasses
1 large egg, plus 1 large egg white
½-1 cup coarse sugar
Preheat the oven to 325˚ F.  Line baking sheets with parchment paper .In a large bowl, mix together the brown sugar, oil, molasses, and egg. Combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cloves, cinnamon, and ginger; whisk well and stir into the molasses mixture to form dough

Shape dough into 1 to 1½-inch balls.  Dip each dough ball in the egg white, remove and let the excess drip off so it is lightly coated.   Roll the ball of dough coated in egg white in the sugar so that it is covered in an even layer. Repeat with the remaining dough balls.Place the coated balls on the prepared baking sheets about 2 to 3 inches apart. Flatten the balls a little,I used bottom of a glass to flatten the dough.

  Bake, rotating the sheets halfway through baking, just until the tops of the cookies are set and beginning to crack, about 15-17 minutes total.  Let cool on the baking sheets a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Lentil Soup

Here is a hearty vegetable soup to warm up any chilly day.All it takes is 10 minutes from prep to finish. This soup reheats well too,so no worries if you have left overs in case yours is a small family.
Recipe source: Food network
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1 medium onion, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes
11/4 cups  lentils
8 cups low-salt chicken broth/vegetable broth
4 to 6 fresh thyme sprigs
2/3 cup dried orzo pasta
1 cup shredded Parmesan (optional)
Heat the oil in a pressure cooker over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, and celery. Add the garlic, salt, and pepper and saute until all the vegetables are tender. Add the tomatoes with their juices. Simmer until the juices evaporate a little and the tomatoes break down, stirring occasionally. Add the lentils and pasta and mix to coat. Add the broth and stir. Add the thyme sprigs. Bring to a boil over high heat.Put on the weight for your cooker when the steam starts to come and cook for 5 minutes.Switch of the stove  and open the cooker when there is no more pressure.Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Adjust the thickness of the soup to your liking.Ladle the soup into bowls. Sprinkle with the Parmesan, drizzle with olive oil, and serve.

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