Blueberry Orange Bread

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I froze a big ziplock bag of blueberries over the summer and decided to use some up in this bread.  It’s very good ~ you can really taste the orange and I love that.  I think blueberry and orange is a great combination. I use 1 cup of the blueberries and I put them in the batter frozen.


Blueberry Orange Bread

2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
1/2 cup orange juice
1/3 cup water
2 tbsps butter, melted
2 tbsps grated orange zest
3/4 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Preheat oven to 350º.

Combine the first five ingredient in a large bowl and set aside.

In another bowl, combine the egg, orange juice, water, butter and orange peel. Add to the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined. Fold in the blueberries.

Pour into a greased and floured 8×4 loaf pan.

Bake for 65-70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes then remove from pan to a wire rack to finish cooking.

Makes 1 loaf.


Happy Cooking!


Minestrone Soup II

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I love minestrone soup  ~I think it’s my favorite at the moment.  This recipe is just loaded with veggies and it’s delicious!

I used dried herbs instead of fresh and I used great northern beans and it worked out fine. I don’t see why you couldn’t just add the pasta to the soup instead of cooking it separately. I did it separately but don’t see the point. This makes a TON of soup so it’s great for freezing.  it’s also one of those soups that tastes even better the next day.


Minestrone Soup II

3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 onions, chopped
2 cups chopped celery
5 carrots, sliced
2 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
4 cups tomato sauce
1/2 cup red wine (optional)
1 cup canned kidney beans, drained
1 (15 ounce) can green beans
2 cups baby spinach, rinsed
3 zucchinis, quartered and sliced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
tablespoons chopped fresh basil
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup seashell pasta
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese for topping
1 tablespoon olive oil

In a large stock pot, over medium-low heat, heat olive oil and saute garlic for 2 to 3 minutes. Add onion and saute for 4 to 5 minutes. Add celery and carrots, saute for 1 to 2 minutes.

Add chicken broth, water and tomato sauce, bring to boil, stirring frequently. If desired add red wine at this point. Reduce heat to low and add kidney beans, green beans, spinach leaves, zucchini, oregano, basil, salt and pepper. Simmer for 30 to 40 minutes, the longer the better.

Fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a boil. Add macaroni and cook until tender. Drain water and set aside.

Once pasta is cooked and soup is heated through place 2 tablespoons cooked pasta into individual serving bowls. Ladle soup on top of pasta and sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top. Dropa dollop of olive oil on top and serve.

Happy Cooking!


Chocolate Peanut Cookies


These cookies have lots of goodies in them and my family loves them. They freeze well.

I have two things to make today and then I am DONE!  I have to get everything out of the freezer tonight and put cookie trays together ~ YAY!


Chocolate Peanut Cookies

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup honey-roasted peanuts
3/4 cup coarsely chopped chocolate-covered peanut butter cups (about 15)

Preheat oven to 350º.

Beat the butter and peanut butter together in a large bowl. Add sugars, baking soda and salt. Beat until well combined, scraping sides of bowl if needed. Beat in egg, milk and vanilla until combined.

Beat in the flour. Stir in the chocolate chips, peanuts and chopped peanut butter cups.

Drop dough my generously rounded tsps onto an ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

Makes about 30 depending on size.


Merry Christmas Baking!


Chocolate Truffle Cookies


Well, I am almost finished baking ~ I just have a couple of things to make that I can’t make ahead so I’ll do that tomorrow and cookie trays go out on Tuesday ~ YAY!

If you are a chocoholic, you need to try these cookies ~ they are VERY chocolatey but really good.


Chocolate Truffle Cookies

4  (1 ounce)  squares unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
6 tbsps butter
3 eggs
1 cup white sugar
1 1/2 tsps vanilla
1/2 cup flour
2 tbsps unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

In a microwave, melt unsweetened chocolate, 1 cup of the choclate chips and the butter, stirring occasionally until smooth. Set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, whip the eggs and sugar until thick and pale, about 2 minutes. Stir in the vanilla and chocolate mixture until well mixed.

Combine the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt and gradually stir into the chocolate mixture. Fold in 1 cup of chocolate chips.

Cover dough and chill for at least an hour or overnight.

Preheat oven to 350º. Roll chilled dough into 1 inch balls and place on ungreased cookie sheets 2 inches apart ~ I lined mine with parchment paper.

Bake for 9 to 11 minutes. Let cool on cookie sheets for 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes 36 cookies.


Merry Christmas Baking!


Chocolate-Drizzled Shortbread


I found this recipe on Recipezaar and it’s super easy to make.  It’s not very sweet which is nice since we’ll have so many really sweet cookies to munch on.  They also look really pretty.

Here’s the link:  Chocolate-Drizzled Shortbread


I also made a batch of my Chocolate Drop Cookies and dressed them up for Christmas.


Merry Christmas Baking!


Peanut Butter Cup Cookies


DD and I are heading up to Colonial Williamsburg today for our annual Christmas tea at Christiana Campbell’s Tavern.   I’ll be posting pictures later today or tomorrow.

Continuing with the peanut butter theme, these are fairly popular cookies, too.  They are really easy to make but look like they took some time.  This recipe says to chill the dough but I never do ~ it’s not very sticky.  The recipe only makes 36 for me. These cookies freeze well.


Peanut Butter Cup Cookies

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cups flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
about 36-42 miniature peanut butter cups

Combine butter, sugars, egg, peanut butter and vanilla in a large mixing bowl and beat until smooth. Add flour, baking soda and salt to the creamed mixture and beat until well combined. Cover and chill dough.

When dough is chilled, roll in walnut-sized balls and place in greased mini muffin pans. Bake at 375º for 8-9 minutes.

Remove pans from oven and immediately press one peanut butter cup in the middle of each cookie.

Cool in pans for about 10 minutes and then remove and cool completel.y on rack.

Makes 36-42 cookies.


Merry Christmas Baking!


Cherry Icebox Cookies


This is another sort of old fashioned cookie.  I like them because I can mix up the dough one day and bake them off the next day ~ very easy.  I would think that you could freeze the dough as well.  I put the baked cookies in the freezer so we’ll see how that works.


Cherry Icebox Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
3 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 cup maraschino cherry juice
4 1/2 tsps lemon juice
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup chopped maraschino cherries

Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and the vanilla.

Combine the dry ingredients and gradually add to the creamed mixture.

Beat in cherry and lemon juices. Stir in nuts and cherries.

Shape into four 12-inch logs and wrap in plastic wrap. Regrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Unwrap and cut into 1/4 inch slices. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets.

Bake at 375º for 8-10 minutes or until the edges begin to brown. Remove to wire racks to cool.

Makes 3-4 dozen.


Happy Baking!


Libby’s Super, Super Easy Sugar Cookies


My DD picked out this recipe for me to make years ago and it has become  a family favorite.  Mixed up, it looks like the dough will never cover a 15×10 pan, but keep at it and it will spread over it very nicely.  An offset spreader will help quite a bit. Sometimes I cut them into bars, sometimes into triangles.  They freeze really well.


Libby’s Super, Super Easy Sugar Cookies

3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup oil
1 tablespoon milk
1-2 teaspoon almond extract or vanilla extract
1 egg
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar (I use colored sugars)

Heat oven to 375º.

In large bowl, beat 3/4 cup sugar, butter, oil, milk, almond (or vanilla) extract and egg until light and fluffy. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt; blend well.

Spread evenly in ungreased 15×10 baking pan; sprinkle with 1 tablespoon sugar.

Bake at 375º for 10 to 12 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool 5 minutes. Cut into squares or triangles.


Merry Christmas Baking!


Lemon Icebox Cookies


This recipe is really an old fashioned kind of cookie.  It’s really easy to prepare and you can even freeze the dough for a month or two before baking.  The cookies also freeze well after baking.  I subbed Splenda sugar and brown sugar and they are a little on the dry side but still very good.  I used the zest of a whole lemon and the juice from a big lemon ~ nice and lemony.  You can add in chopped nuts, coconut, poppy seeds, etc., when mixing the dough.


Lemon Icebox Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
2 large eggs
1 tsp grated lemon peel
2 tbsps fresh lemon juice
3 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Beat butter and both sugars with an electric mixer util fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat well after each addition. Add grated peel and lemon juice and bleat until well blended.

Add flour, baking soda and salt to butter mixture, beating until just blended.

Divide into 3 equal pieces and roll each piece, on wax or parchment paper, into a 12 inch log. Wrap and chill for 8 hours. I usually make up the night before I want to bake them.

Cut each log into 1/2 inch slices and place on lightly greased baking sheets. Bake at 350º for 12 to 14 minutes until edges are lightly browned.

Remove to wire racks to cool. Store in an airtight conatiner or freeze.

Makes about 6 or 7 dozen cookies.


Happy Cooking!


Spicy Molasses Cookies


I LOVE these cookies ~ they are spicy and very flavorful.  I made them with Splenda brown sugar and they are a little drier than I would like but otherwise still taste just as good. They freeze really well after baking.


Spicy Molasses Cookies

3/4 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 egg
1/4 cup molasses
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 1/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
white sugar, for dipping

Mix together shortening, brown sugar, egg and molasses.

In separate bowl, stir together remaining dry ingredients except white sugar. Then mix dry ingredients into shortening mixture.
Chill dough 2 hours or overnight.

Roll dough into balls the size of large walnuts and dip tops in sugar.

Place on lightly greased baking sheet about 3 inches apart, sugared side up.

Bake in a 375º oven about 10 to 12 minutes until just set but not hard.

Cool on wire rack.

Makes about 28 or 29 cookies.