Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Janimies World Winter Giveaway

Ats Janimies world, she is having a great giveaway to win a beautiful 1 inch large adjustable round antique brass nickel free turquoise glitter ring.Click the highlighted link to enter Janimies world: Winter GiveAway.

Everybody can enter and you have till December 28th to get your entries in!So check it out!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Get Your Mini Pretzels Here!

I wanted to make something savory earlier this week and I ended up finding one of my pretzel recipes I haven't reviewed yet.

Its a pretzel recipe that is different from most because it kicks out the yeast and brings in the baking powder.Its a good choice when you don't have yeast in your kitchen and you want delicious pretzels.The powder does its job well as a raising agent in these pretzel;however it will not be able to give the overall flavor of yeast.

To help these pretzels out with lack of yeast flavor you give it a great spice blend and topping.For my batch I threw in Italian spice into the dough and then added spice and garlic into the sauce.Its basically a preference on what you want, just like a pizza.I always recommend to taste test your sauce and play around with the flavors before adding them.

After making your perfect sauce you always have to remember to re coat your pretzels throughout baking. I re coated these pretzels twice and it does make a difference for overall flavor and texture.No one wants bland, dry out pretzels.

For texture, its slightly different from yeast versions.They don't rise as much and are slightly softer even overtime.The flavors are a variety depending on your topping.For the dough its slightly blend without topping,however the shortening can be replaced with butter to give more flavor.

The recipe is simpler to make then my Italian Pizza Pretzels and make mini pretzels compared to the other recipe.For being mini,they will do great as an appetizer and are very eye catching. They have good flavor,rise well and don't use much ingredient. I know they can't compete with the yeast version for flavor and raising factor, but they come quite close.I do recommend this recipe and if someone has some great ideas to make it even better without using yeast.Be sure to comment below!

(Adapted from Food 11 Pretzel Recipe,Written by Berendina Dykema)

500ml all purpose flour
20ml baking powder
2ml salt
2ml Italian spice or sage
120ml shortening or butter
180ml milk


1 cup tomato sauce
1 large clove garlic,minced
2ml Italian spice

Preheat oven at 420F.Mix flour,baking powder,salt and Italian spice in a large bowl.Cut in the shortening, until it resembles bread crumbs.

Toss in the milk using a fork,about 15ml(1 tbsp) at a time.Form a soft dough.

Split dough in half.Create 6 balls for each half.Shape in pretzels,will make 12 in all.Place on nonstick pan or greased cookie sheet

Mix tomato sauce with minced garlic and spices.Brush the pretzels, try to avoid getting any sauce on the pan ( IT WILL BURN!)

Bake in oven for 5 minutes, then remove and re-coat again( To know when to re coat the pretzels is when they no longer look wet with sauce)

After re coating you bake them for another 5 minutes till golden and puffy (spring back test)They will also be lightly golden on bottom.

Then top with grated cheese and place in oven till cheese it melted.Let cool on cookie rack and serve.
Best thing to do is always watch these carefully in the oven.The do store well in containers.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Giveaway Progress Of 2011

I've been so lucky this pass year with my blog receiving such positive feedback and all the great giveaways I've won.I wanted to take a picture to cover the progress of 2011 so far in my giveaways and wow I was surprised. I love every item I've received and I have this new found respect for small online businesses that I never had before .Thank you everyone. For the ones that gave me these great gifts and the ones that set up the giveaways.I'm officially addicted to giveaways and its just fun to be surprised.Enjoy the picture and to let everyone know their are two items that were to big to get in the picture, which are the "Peace,Love And Cookie Dough Apron And The Namaste Food Package.Thank you and its finally the weekend!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

My Review Of Kashi Peanut Peanut Butter Chewy Bars

 Kashi, The Seven Whole Grain Company was giving out free samples through the mail to whoever filled out the information on their site.The samples were snatched up fast online and after a while of waiting, we received our Blackberry Graham bar.It resembled much like a fig newton bar in texture and appearance,while being slightly dry.The company was even more generous by also sending a freebie coupon with it for one box of any choice Kashi Bar.

The ones you see here are the one's we got free, which are called Peanut Peanut Butter Bars.Each Kashi box has 6 bars in total and these specific bars are 150 calories each.However don't let the calories scare you off because these bars are better for you then other granola bars.They include seven whole grains, which they let you know in the company name and they only use nature ingredients in their products. Kashi bars also include fiber,protein and zero trans fats.The bars also have a bonus.I can actually read,pronounce and understand everything in the ingredients list.

These bars are packed to the maximum of peanuts and if you added anymore I think it be officially cereal.They hold up strong and are way thicker then any other granola bar.The peanut bars also have a great appearance and look exactly like the image on the box, which is surprising since some products can be very deceiving.These traits are a big win in my book.

When I actually tried this Peanut Peanut Butter bar I was having a workout with my jaw.When they said chewy bars they meant business.However after I learned to eat the bar more slowly I avoided any jaw tension.Even though they were quite chewy and crunchy they didn't lack any moisture,which I think is a great bonus.Any other peanut bar I've tried has been so dry it seemed like you were eating a thick cracker.I'm glad they kept with their promise of having a chewy,crunchy bar that isn't dry.

Now on to the flavor that everyone is patiently waiting to learn about, right? Well my judgement is Kashi does very well in getting that strong flavor of peanut, but I cannot say that it tastes like peanut butter.But maybe I'm way to use to rich peanut butter and that might come through my review.However it has a good sweetness balance and a good after taste.You could eat a few of these and not have any bad flavors in your mouth afterwords.However you probably be very full in the end.

My family members that also tried them had a few different opinions.One said the bars needed more peanuts and another said it lacked peanut butter flavor.All in all we all came to the same decision that these bars were pretty good.They weren't perfect, but definitely a worthy free sample.Anyways, everyone have a soon to be great weekend!

This is my own review of a product I tried out.I'm just practicing my writing chops and I was no way compensated or asked to do this review.Just getting the word out about a good product.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Bloggers! Sign Up For Blog Frog! So Easy!

Are you a blogger? Do you want to be part of a community? Do you need advice or help with your blog?

If you answered yes to to all of these.Then you should sign up for Blog Frog. I'm recently new to the site and would love my fellow blogger friends to join in.If your already a part of the popular site then add me up! My Blog Frog  and join my community

Follow either link and see how easy it is to sign up!

Monday, November 14, 2011

No Butter Peanut Butter Cookies

I think these are the best peanut butter cookies so far and their actually completely different in texture and flavor compared to other recipes. They still have that great peanut butter flavor, but more of it.This is because the recipe ditches the butter and lets the peanut butter take the reins.Wonderfully, the peanut butter does really well all on its own.It gave this extra creaminess and moisture that you don't seem to get with butter recipes. I don't know how it does it,but it creates a better all around cookie.Its chewier,creates more moisture and the cookies seem to stay like that overtime. If it covers all those three elements I just have to give it two thumbs up.

The only issues I seem to have with this recipe is you have to make sure to crisscross the cookies. I'm not going to give this recipe a bad rating for that because it was myself that created this issue.This is because in my first batch I ended up forgetting and ended up with cookies that didn't spread.They were still good,but didn't bake all that evenly and had a harder texture.So I learned my lesson from the first 8 cookies and listened to the recipe.The next batches evenly baked and spread out fine.

From reading this recipe I thought something completely different to how these cookies would turn out and they came out better then I imagined.They are officially one of my top, go to recipes for peanut butter cookies. Also I can't forget to mention the two aspects to these cookies that make them the way they are.They just wouldn't be the same without chocolate chips and they actually stayed deliciously melty over time.  Also the quick oats created a really unique texture and helped hold these cookies together.  What I also didn't think about till now is the oats actually helped kick out extra flour and put something healthier in the cookies. You have to give a thumbs up to that!

So I really learned something new from this recipe. I found out that you really dont need butter/margarine to create a good peanut butter cookie all you need is peanut butter.You save the butter for treats that really need it like shortbread,*mouth watering*. Yum!

Now I only wish peanut butter wasn't' going to raise in price by 40%. But understandable they didn't have a good year. Better bring out some Canadian coupons Kraft!:)

Anyways,Christmas stuff is already on its way! Must make some secret baking plans!

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
(Adapted from Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies,CAN-AM Cooks-Comfort Food From Around The World Cookbook)

2/3 cup creamy Kraft peanut butter
1 cup light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/4 tsp table salt
1 tsp artificial vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup quick oats
1 cup Pastry or cake flour
1/2 cup Hershey milk chocolate chips

Preheated the oven to 375F(190C).

Creamed the peanut butter and brown sugar together in a large bowl, with a hand held electric beater until smooth. Then I added both eggs and beat them in ,until smooth and incorporated.I gently mixed in the table salt,vanilla extract and the baking soda until I could no longer see baking soda. I stirred in the quick oats and cake flour until well combined. I slowly worked in the chocolate chips into the cookie dough.

Shaped them into small balls about 1". Then placed them on a lightly greased cookie sheet (A nonstick will work as well).I pressed them lightly with a fork to create crisscrosses and to help the cookies spread (It will help create thinner and more well baked cookies.If not done it will create thicker and darker baked cookies based on the temperature for this recipe) I recommend crisscrossing.

They baked really well around 7-8 minutes.Time of baking will be different for the first batch of cookies or if  placed in an oven that's still preheating. The came out lightly golden brown around edges and the seemed to look undercooked at first.But I figured out that its just the moisture from the peanut butter and cookies do continue baking while out of the oven.

I placed them on a cookie sheet and they stayed perfectly moist and chewy even when completely cooled.


Friday, November 11, 2011

Giveaway at Gleeful Things!

I just found out about this great giveaway at Gleeful Things.That's open worldwide. One person could win their very own custom made stylish Ferris wheel slouchy hat.It will be custom made by the very creative Julie and the winner gets to choose their color.

So go on and check it out. She does great work and the hats are beautiful.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

ZigZag Sugar Cookies

Well Halloween has passed and now its already jumped into November.Its a brand new month and I've already started the baking.This time I actually had to bake so that I wouldn't waste any leftover homemade icing.So I ended up making Martha Stewart's ideal sugar cookies again and made some cute flower shapes.They worked out so well that I had tons of creative fun making fancy designs.I even used my very own icing bottles to help out with piping and drizzling designs.I found the bottles were actually much easier to handle then any pipping bag I've used and I think I'm officially reformed to it. I still will keep my piping bags for back-up, but these little bottles are ten times better.I love that you can easily change around everything and I had less pain in my arm when I was done piping all 48 cookies.These little bottles helped create some really simple fancy designs and I'm excited to use them for Christmas Holiday treats.

These are my favorite sugar cookies and its actually the same recipe that I used for my Mario Cookie Plant.They are very soft and chewy while being very strong and durable as well.I highly recommend the recipe and if you want a large batch of 48 to 50 cookies be sure to double the recipe.You could even add a little tbsp of lemon juice to the cookie dough to give some flavor.Anyways, I'm off to enter some giveaways and look up recipes.Have a great day everyone.