November 24, 2010

No Roll Pie Crust

Unbaked No Roll Crust
How do you roll out pie crust dough into that perfect circle?

I don't know.

I've tried a few times ending up with odd shaped uneven dough.  My brain just cannot comprehend how to form that perfect circle.  So as a result, my lovely glass Pyrex pie dish has been used as a flour and egg dip pan, a pancake plate and a bead sorter.

So my interest was piqued when one of my favourite bloggers, Joy The Baker, posted a recipe for No Roll Crust.

Eureka! I can bake a pie completely from scratch? 
You know, I had a bit of baker's guilt because my crust was not my own. It was hard always having the following conversation:

Sister/Aunt/Friend: "Michelle, this pie is sooo delicious! Did you make the crust?"
Me: "Thanks! But no, it's refrigerated."
Sister/Aunt/Friend: "Oh....I's still good."

Why is it that whenever someone eats a pie, they always want to know if you made the crust yourself?  These people don't bake! And they sure don't bake pie crusts!

Anyway, finally, thanks to this recipe, my future conversations will go like this:
Sister/Aunt/Friend: "Michelle, this pie is sooo delicious! Did you make the crust?"
Me: "Thanks! Yes. Yes I did."
Sister/Aunt/Friend: "Guuurrlll you are a baking goddess! I bow down to you!"
Me:" Oh it's nothing really, it's just my calling."

The crust is great.

No Roll Pie Crust by Joy The Baker:
makes 1 9-inch pie crust
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 cup (4 Tablespoon) frozen butter that has been grated on a cheese grater
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil 
  • 1 Tablespoon cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 Tablespoons cold milk
In a medium sized bowl combine flour, salt, baking powder and sugar. Whisk together.
Add frozen butter that has been grated on a cheese grater and tablespoon of cream cheese. With your fingers, work the cream cheese and butter into the flour mixture, breaking the butter and cream cheese up until they’re in well incorporated into the flour. Some butter bits will be tiny, other the size of small pebbles. The dough may even begin to some together in a rough, sandy kind of way.
Combine the milk and oil. Whisk together. Add all at once to the flour and butter mixture. With a fork, begin to combine the ingredients, making sure that all of the flour mixture is introduced to the liquid. The mixture does not need to come together into a ball. Leave it a bit shaggy and dump the dough into a clean 9-inch pie plate. With your fingers, press the dough evenly into the bottom of the pie plate and up the sides. Try to get the dough as even as possible, but don’t worry too much about finger indentations. You can’t fight that.

Place the prepared crust in the freezer while you preheat the oven and prepare your filling. If you’re going to pre-bake your crust, heat the oven to 350 degrees F and line the chilled pie crust with foil, weigh down with beans and bake for 10 minutes covered. Remove the foil and beans and bake for 4-6 minutes uncovered until golden brown.
If you need an unbaked pie crust, simply remove the crust from the freezer once your filling is made, fill your pie and place in a preheated oven. Bake according to your particular recipe.

Sweet Potato Pie with No Roll Crust
Linked To:
Blue Cricket Design
Someday Crafts
Night Owl Crafting

November 22, 2010

Sweet Potato Pie


Here in The Bahamas, we don't celebrate Thanksgiving.  Let me clarify that, Thanksgiving is not a National Holiday.  However, many Bahamians choose to celebrate the day with our neighbours to the North. I think many use it as an excuse to eat a big meal.

I, on the other hand do not.  As a descendant of an oppressed people, I choose not to observe the day. I do however enjoy all of the online sales and recipes! So yeah, I'm two-faced...whatever.

As I mentioned previously, when this time of year rolls around, I like to test recipes out before Christmas just to make sure that they will be great on the big day.  So far, I've tested the Christmas Morning Cinnamon Rolls.

Now I've tested one of my desserts...Sweet Potato Pie.  I tried this recipe for the first time last year and loved it.  So, I really didn't need to test it, I just had a craving for it.

I modified the recipe from a Sweet Potato Pecan Pie on the Eagle Brand website.  Pecans are not readily available here, and they are also very expensive. Also, I do not like nut pies.

So here's my take on it:
Sweet Potato Pie by Eagle Brand modified by The Sapphire Ridge Chronicles:
  • 1 pound yams or sweet potatoes, cooked and peeled 
  • 1/4 cup butter 
  • 1 (14 oz.) can Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk 
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange peel 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg 
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 
  • 1 large egg
  • Prepared Pie Crust (I made my own)
HEAT oven to 350°F. Beat hot yams and 1/4 cup butter in large bowl with electric mixer until smooth. Add sweetened condensed milk, cinnamon, orange peel, vanilla, nutmeg, salt and egg; mix well. Pour into crust.
BAKE 55-60 minutes.


Linked To:

November 17, 2010

Christmas Morning Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon Rolls

I'm starting to get the Christmas bug. For me, that means baking!  

I always have this fantasy that my husband and kids, family and friends will come over to a house full of goodies and great food to eat. Unfortunately, it doesn't turn out that way. You see, I also sell cakes and goodies for the season, and end up being too pooped to do much at home. But I always make sure that Christmas Dinner is cooked and they have a great Christmas Breakfast.

I like to try new recipes out before Christmas morning to make sure that everyone will enjoy them.  We love Cinnamon Rolls for breakfast.  I've tried a few recipes, but they were never quite to my liking, OR they were just too much work.

However, I have found a recipe that tastes great and is easy to do, mainly because it uses a bread machine. It can be done without one as well, but a bread machine makes it easier.
I love the way they came out, and will definitely be making them on Christmas Morning!

Cinnamon Rolls III by Miss Alix on  
  • 1/4 cup warm water 
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted 
  • 1/2 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix 
  • 1 cup warm milk ( I used powdered milk)
  • 1 egg, room temperature 
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt 
  • 4 cups bread flour 
  • 1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened 
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans (optional)
  • 1/2 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened 
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened 
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar 
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons milk

1.In the pan of your bread machine, combine water, melted butter, vanilla pudding, warm milk, egg, 1 tablespoon sugar, salt, bread flour and yeast. Set machine to Dough cycle; press Start.
2.When Dough cycle has finished, turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll into a 17x10 inch rectangle. Spread with softened butter. In a small bowl, stir together brown sugar, cinnamon and pecans. Sprinkle brown sugar mixture over dough.3.Roll up dough, beginning with long side. Slice into 16 one inch slices and place in 9x13 buttered pan. Let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 45 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
4.Bake in preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes. While rolls bake, stir together cream cheese, softened butter, confectioners' sugar, vanilla and milk. Remove rolls from oven and top with frosting.

Linked To:
It's So Very Cheri
Round Tuit
The Girl Creative
Making the World Cuter
Sugar Bee
These Creative Juices
Skip To My Lou
Blue Cricket Design
Someday Crafts
Santa's Gift Shoppe
Night Owl Crafting

Homemade Cinna Stix

Homemade Cinna Stix
 It was family night last night and on the menu were homemade pizzas and cinna stix.
This was easy to make and it tastes just like Dominos!  

  • pizza dough (12oz.)
  • 1/2 stick butter (2oz.)
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 cup confectioner's sugar
  • water
Mix white sugar and cinnamon together.Take your favourite pizza dough, and roll out to the thickness desired.  As you can see, my dough was not a uniform shape. Melt butter and spread onto rolled out pizza dough. Make sure you get a lot of butter on there, but you dont want it to become soggy.Then sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mix heavily onto the buttered dough. With pizza cutter, partially cut dough. Do not cut dough completely.
Bake in preheated oven at 425 degrees for 15-20 minutes.
For the glaze, mix confectioner's sugar with a little water. If its too watery add more sugar.  You don't want it too thin. Drizzle onto Cinna Stix while hot out of the oven.

November 10, 2010

Vanilla Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting

Vanilla Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream (2)
I made these for my cousin's godson along with some Red Velvet Cupcakes. It's a simple Vanilla Cupcake recipe.  I got the recipe from the Joy of Baking website.
It wasn't as light as I'd hoped, but they did rise quite well, and they taste good. 
The recipe calls for lemon zest.  I didn't have any, and used lemon extract.  I think I used too much because the lemon taste was stronger than I'd hoped.  Next time, I'll use Vanilla Extract instead.
The recipe makes exactly 12 cupcakes, so double if you want more.  I topped them with Chocolate Buttercream.

Vanilla Cupcakes from The Joy of Baking:

  1. 1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
  2. 2/3 cup (130 grams) granulated white sugar
  3. 3 large eggs
  4. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  5. Zest of 1 large lemon (outer yellow skin)
  6. 1 1/2 cups (195 grams) all purpose flour
  7. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  8. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  9. 1/4 cup (60 ml) milk
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.
In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract and lemon zest. 
In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the flour mixture and milk, in three additions, beginning and ending with the flour. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Evenly fill the muffin cups with the batter and bake for about 18-20 minutes or until nicely browned and a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost with icing. If you want flat topped cupcakes then slice off the dome of each cupcake, with a sharp knife, before frosting.
Vanilla Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
Maybe it's just me, but I don't know what the big deal is about Red Velvet cupcakes.  They taste like chocolate cake - but red.  Why does everyone go gaga over them?
I was asked by my cousin to bake these for her godson's birthday.  Apparently, they are his favourite.
I got the recipe from Joy The Baker.  She has a great blog.  She bakes yummy treats and has a great sense of humor.  Her recipes are fantastic. If you love Red Velvet cake, then try this recipe. These were good, especially with the Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting.

Recipes from Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook via Joy The Baker
Red Velvet Cupcakes
Makes one dozen cupcakes, double recipe to make 2 9-inch layer cakes (I doubled it to make 24 cupcakes) 
  • 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature 
  • 3/4 cup sugar 
  • 1 egg 
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • 3 Tablespoons red food coloring 
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk 
  • 1 cup plus 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar 

In the bowl of a stand mixer fit with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about three minutes. Turn mixer to high and add the egg. Scrape down the bowl and beat until well incorporated. 
In a separate bowl mix together cocoa, vanilla and red food coloring to make a thick paste. Add to the batter, mixing thoroughly until completely combined. You may need to stop the mixer to scrape the bottom of the bowl, making sure that all the batter gets color. 
Turn mixer to low and slowly add half of the buttermilk. Add half of the flour and mix until combined. Scrape the bowl and repeat the process with the remaining milk and flour. Beat on high until smooth. 
Turn mixer to low and add baking soda and white vinegar. Turn to high and beat a few more minutes. 
Spoon batter into a paper lined cupcake baking pan and bake at 325 F for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the center cupcake comes out clean. 
Let rest in the pan for 10 minutes, then place them of a cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.  

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting 

 double recipe to frost a 2 layer 9-inch cake 
  • 2 1/3 cups powdered sugar, sifted 
  • 3 Tablespoons butter, room temperature 
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, cold
  • scant 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 
Beat the powdered sugar, cinnamon, and butter together in the bowl of a stand mixer fit with a paddle attachment. Mix on medium-slow speed until it comes together and is well mixed. 
Add the cream cheese all at once and beat on medium to medium-high until incorporated. 
Turn the mixer to medium-high and beat for 5 minutes, or until the frosting becomes light and fluffy. 

Linked To:
Blue Cricket Designs
Someday Crafts
Tea Rose Home
House of Hepworths

November 5, 2010

I'm OutMANned

Last night I had a glimpse into my future, and I'm not quite comfortable with it. 
While my daughter was at Drama Practice  at church, my husband, son and I watched "The Karate Kid".  During the movie, my son and husband engaged in male behaviour involving bodily functions etc. 

They found this quite humorous and tried to out do each other at who can be more gross.  As the only female there, I was completely disgusted by this caveman behaviour and just wanted it to end.

My daughter will be leaving for College next year.  That will leave just the three of us at Sapphire Ridge.  I will officially be in the minority.  All my life, I have never been in the minority as far as the ratio of male:female in my home is concerned.  What am I going to do?

How will I cope with all of the testosterone? How will I survive the farting contests, booger flings and hands down pants every single day.  I need a plan!
Something that will protect me from the belches and spit bubbles. 

But what?

Help me.....please?

November 4, 2010


Damon and I have just pulled up the driveway and there is Roxy (the dog) standing in the way of the car.

Me: Damon can you move Roxy out of the way?

Damon as he opens the car door: Well you know what they say...If a woman wants something done...ask a man to do it.
Yes, I have a 7 yr. old male chauvinist.