Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

I didn’t feel like making a pie today. I wanted something to snack on that had pumpkin in it. I already made muffins, but I’ve never made them in cookie form. Pumpkin and chocolate? Yum. Though now I have to pick up more pumpkins to carve for later. That just means I give myself an excuse to go on another hay ride this year and maybe pick some apples while I search for the perfect carving pumpkin. That is part of why I love fall. The weather is just right where you don’t sweat when hiking, the leaves change, and I get this need to want to bake again. Colder weather makes me think of warm apple cider and cuddling.

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Pumpkin Muffins with Cream Cheese Glaze

 

I know that it’s still August, but even Trader Joes has tempted me with Fall by bringing out their Pumpkin Ales. Soon Starbucks will have their Pumpkin Lattes, and Dunkin Donuts will bring out their famous Pumpkin Muffins. Well, why not make something much more delicious at home and the correct portion size?

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Survived Another Year! 24! Happy Birthday to Me :)

 

My mom baked me a vanilla frosted spice cake. I can’t remember the last time I’ve had spice cake. I don’t think she ever made me one before, but it was the perfect way to end the night. It was peaceful and no stress creeping up. The cards become more important as you get older than just ripping open to find the money like we all did as kids. All of my grandparents sent me a card and a short letter inside. My parents gave me money for the bike I want to get, and my brother hugged me a lot. The kids on my junior high bus ride sang me happy birthday, and I cringed when they chanted “Are you 1? Are you 2? Are you 3?…”

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Low Fat Classic Cheesecake Recipe

My friend Kristin’s birthday was today. Yesterday, I decided to make my first cheesecake ever. I am a glutton for cheesecake, but I hate how fattening it can be. So I went searching around on the internet for different ideas that could inspire a little bit healthier version that wouldn’t hurt my hips as much. I came up with this recipe below, and I made two of them. One for my family, and one for my friend’s birthday to bring into my summer job.

The picture above is the first one I made. I felt the graham cracker crust was too thin, so I added more to the recipe. I also used Hershey Light Syrup in the cheese mixture to make a semi swirl on the top before baking it. I’m still not 100% great at the whole swirling a cake or bread. Any advice?

Low Fat Cheesecake Recipe

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Mashed Red Pepper Turnips and Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt Visit

Happy Mother’s Day to all moms out there or even people who have to act like moms to others! Today is a gorgeous day and I just got back from a family reunion of my dad’s cousins, aunts, and uncles; most I have never met before.

My lovely mother with me at the reunion.

My Uncle Dave and Uncle Bill went with us and spent the night last night. My Uncle Bill happened to notice the turnips that were starting to sprout in my fridge and he asked what I was planning on doing with them. The only thing that could come to mind was a soup of some sort, but I wasn’t completely sold on the idea.

“We used to mash them like potatoes. Boil them up, slab some butter with pepper and salt and mash them up. It’s very delicious,” he said.

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Vanilla Brown Rice Custard

Happy May Day everyone! This is my month! YEAH! Well.. more like my birthday is in 20 days. WOOT! Beyond that, I was in the mood yesterday to have some homemade rice pudding. I found a couple of recipes, but most of them called for an egregious amount of Half and Half. Last thing I wanted was 3 cups of Half and Half in my rice custard. I also wanted to use brown rice over white rice to change it up a bit. This weekend was mostly dedicated towards my garden area and celebrating Arbor day late. So here is a simple and delicious recipe for Vanilla Brown Rice Custard.

You will need:

  • 13.5 ounces of milk (coconut milk, soy, or almond would be delicious too)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup sugar for step 1 of the recipe
  • 2/3 cup sugar for Step 2 of the recipe
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1 1/2 cup of half and half
  • 1 1/2 cup of vanilla non fat yogurt or greek yogurt
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 Tbs of Vanilla Extract

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Avocado Chocolate Mousse

I’ve heard multiple ways of making this mousse and most are vegan. I personally wanted milk in mine and real sugar for the taste factor. Chocolate seems to be my weakness lately, and I wanted to make a dessert that would satisfy my craving, but not make me cringe next time I step on the scale.

You Need for Avocado Mousse:

  • 2-4 ripe avocados
  • 1 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup white sugar (or some other sugar option like agave or truvia)
  • 1/2 cup milk (as always I used lactose free milk. This time I used a 2% milk because I wanted it a little creamier)
  • 1 Tbs of vanilla extract
  • 1 Tsp of peppermint extract (optional)
  • pinch of salt

For Other Layers in the dessert from the picture:

  • 1 cup raw sunflower seeds without the shell (nuts could work really well for this too. Almonds would be perfect)
  • French Vanilla Non Fat Yogurt (you can really use any yogurt. Imagine that sprinkle of instant coffee or heathbar yogurt. Heck you could make it a frozen yogurt on the bottom. MMMMmmmmm)
  • Raspberry or berry of choice. You could even do chocolate shavings or mini chocolate chips.
  • Mint leaf

1. Whip the avocados in a food processor until creamy. Then place all the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth and sweet enough to your liking. Mine tasted more like a dark chocolate. With the mint extract it really made the flavors burst. Use a spatula to make sure all is getting blended on the sides of the blender.

2. The sunflower seeds are going to be chopped up. Make sure it’s not too finely chopped up or it will be more of a thick powder. Remember you are looking for a sort of crunch.

3. Layer your ingredients into a dessert dish of choice. Serve and enjoy!

Happy 18th Birthday Little Brother! Also More Garden Updates!

Mom and I team worked a granny/mac apple pie today in less than an hour and it was so delicious! It must be a boy thing, because my brother kind of just wanted the pie to himself. No friends and simply dig right in with a half happy birthday in a capella. I’m getting a lot better with peeling. One thing I’m learning about food in general is patience. Patience growing, patience harvesting, and patience preparing. It seems I never really had that good of patience, and it’s been giving me the time to reflect and put the effort in.

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Happy Easter! My First Lattice Pie

It was a lovely, close- knit family day. No extended family, and everyone had prior places to go. For once there was no rushing.  I sipped my coffee to make it last those extra minutes that would be lost in the madness of a holiday. Now, I enjoy having friends and family over, but there is something about not having a set time when things must be done. You can taste the spices, lick the spoons, and consider sprinkling more sugar on the tops of cookies.

Patty Griffin helped me get into the mood too. I love this song.

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Soy Nut Butter Blossom Cookies

This cookie has my peanut allergy brother approval.

 

I’ve had this idea to try making a “peanut free” version of my favorite peanut sweets. This is one of my weaknesses. Considering we avoid nuts in general in the house, I wanted to make something so that my whole family felt like we could share. When baked, soy nut butter tastes so very similar to peanut butter. Enough that my friends Erin and Ryan felt it wasn’t too different at all. My brother hasn’t tried peanut butter since he was around the age of one or two. So this was a completely new taste to him.

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