How to Make a Naked Cake

Do you love cake but find yourself scraping off a lot of the frosting before eating it? Say hello to the naked cake! It wears a bit of frosting between the layers but the sides are bare. Cake designers have elevated the naked cake to a work of art and I feel they're often prettier than their fully-frosted counterparts. You don't have to be a pastry chef to create your own beautiful version of a naked cake. I actually think this style of cake is … [Read more...]

My Favorite Cooking Hacks

PAM Cooking Spray sponsored this blog post. The opinions and text are all mine. Cooking is something I've enjoyed doing ever since I took Home Economics in 6th grade. I thought it was so cool that we actually got to spend time at school cooking stuff!  That class whet my appetite for being creative in the kitchen and to this day, I still enjoy trying out new recipes and blending new flavors together. To streamline things in the kitchen and to … [Read more...]

Farmhouse Breakfast with Raspberry Stuffed French Toast

When I was a kid I rarely ate a hot breakfast. Both my parents worked full-time and my brothers and sisters were older than me and always out the door first. My mom would compensate by sometimes cooking pancakes or French toast for dinner. To this day I still don't eat a hot breakfast in the morning, grabbing a banana and yogurt instead. But on occasion hubby and I enjoy a nice farmhouse breakfast at lunch time. My favorite breakfast meal is … [Read more...]

Handcrafted Wooden Spoons and a Giveaway

Several weeks ago an email arrived in my inbox that would inspire me in a very special way. It's one of the things I love about blogging ... those unexpected surprises from a new connection that bring you joy. I received one of those surprises a few weeks ago when Loran from Polder's Old World Market introduced me to her family's beautiful handcrafted wooden spoons. (Polder's Old World Market provided the handcrafted utensils, but the opinions … [Read more...]

Enjoying Coffee with Nestle® Coffee-mate® Creamers

Today I'm sharing a special experience with you, along with a chance to win a $100 Visa gift card (instructions on how to enter are given at the end of this post).When I was younger I swore I'd never drink coffee. I hated the taste. Even in college my friends would encourage me to drink coffee to stay awake at night to study. I tried to join in, really I did, dumping loads of sugar and cream into the cup to make it palatable. Ugh … I just … [Read more...]

How to Freeze Sweet Corn

Driving down the country roads in Illinois, you'll see plenty of roadside farm stands selling sweet corn. In the summer you can smell the scent of corn fields from blocks away. If the wind is blowing just right, I can smell the corn fields from our house. I was inspired by Dawn at Creative Cain Cabin to freeze some corn for the winter months. It's so easy to do ... here's how to freeze sweet corn: My grandmother used to freeze sweet corn all … [Read more...]

Easy Lasagna Cups for Lunch or Dinner

Don't you love finding an easy recipe that turns out scrumptious the first time you make it? I found a tasty lasagna recipe that's great for either lunch or dinner. Instead of laying out the lasagna noodles in a large pan, you roll them up and place them in muffin tins. The original recipe called for store bought spaghetti sauce, but I made mine from scratch. The lasagna cups stay nicely shaped after removing them from the pan, which means … [Read more...]

The Secret to Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

It started in high school ... my quest for the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe. I searched for a recipe that produced Mrs. Field type cookies. You know, chewy on the inside but with a little crunch on the outside. The Toll House cookie recipe left a bit to be desired, in my opinion. The cookies from that recipe were flat and lifeless. I wanted a recipe that created a pretty, well-mounded cookie that wasn't dry. After many years of trial and … [Read more...]

Success with First Attempt at French Macaron Recipe

A few blog posts ago I shared my love of French Macarons and since these little buggers can be expensive, I decided to try making my own. While researching recipes I read that not only are they expensive, but they can be tricky to make. Since my overall goal for 2013 is to step out of my comfort zone without fear or worry, I continued on. This weekend I made my first-ever batch of chocolate French Macarons. I'm happy to report that the texture … [Read more...]

Veggie Valentines for You!

Join us for Veggie Valentines! During the month of February, my daughter over at Flour N Friends and I will be cookin' up veggie dishes every Monday ... just for YOU! Kale, Butternut Squash, Broccoli, Carrots,Swiss Chard, and who knows what else? We're celebrating these wonderful super foods by cookin' up a batch every week and sharing the recipes and photos with you every Monday during the month of February. Heart healthy Veggie Valentines … [Read more...]

Spreadin’ the Blog Love

Recently I've been given 2  awards that are to be passed on to other bloggers. So this post is all about spreadin' the blog love. One thing I've learned in my short time of blogging is that there are a LOT of talented bloggers out there. So many crafters, cooks, decorators, writers, photographers ... Go Girl Power! (I say this only because I've only come across a few male bloggers.) On to spreadin' the love ... Holly at Down to Earth Style … [Read more...]