Thursday, November 20, 2014

Crock Pot Cowboy Soup & A Easy Greasy Giveaway!!!

Today I have a recipe and a giveaway for y'all!!! Fall has definitely arrived here in North Texas, but with polar vortex coming through it feels a lot more like winter than fall. I always tell people that Texas has two speeds hot and cold! I hate that we only get a small taste of spring and fall around here.

When the cold rolls in I immediately turn to all my favorite fall comfort foods. Soups and stews are always at the top of my list and are big crowd-pleasers. Today's recipe for Crock Pot Cowboy Soup is a pantry staple soup that calls for basic ingredients that you usually have on hand.  I made this recipe recently when I had the chance to review a new product that I just love.   

Have you heard of Easy - Greasy? Easy Greasy is a kitchen tool that makes draining hot grease a snap. One of the worst things you can do it pour hot grease down your kitchen drain. 

I personally do not do this because I know the damage that can be done. I usually drain any grease I have from cooking into a empty can or jar, but that can be challenging at times.  

When Michelle a mom from Baton Rouge, La and the inventor of Easy-Greasy contacted me I knew this was something I needed.

I don't always have an empty can or jar on hands to drain grease especially if my recipe does not call for a canned or jarred item. I am then left wondering what do with all that grease?  

If I don't have a jar or can on hand I usually make a bowl out of foil and drain the grease into that. Once it hardens then I toss it in the trash. I was glad to see that someone finally invented an easier, safer, and hands free way of disposing unwanted grease.  

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Quick & Easy Pumpkin Pie Cinnamon Rolls

Summer is over and fall has officially arrived here in North Texas! Down in the south our seasons tend to change a bit later than most parts. When we're enjoying fall weather most states already have snow on the ground. It doesn't seem to last very long, so I enjoy each and every cool day that comes our way.

Fall and winter are definitely my two favorite baking seasons. I usually head into the kitchen around Halloween and don't come out until New Years. This time of year goes by quickly, so I try and savor every moment. I can't believe that in just 9 short days we will be celebrating Thanksgiving.  

Hopefully everyone has their holiday menu all worked out. It can get crazy this time of year, so having a plan is a must. During the holidays I always prepare a special breakfast for my family. It's never too fancy since my time is limited, but it's always something warm and festive. In the past I've made an Overnight French Toast Casserole or an easy breakfast egg casserole.  

Most times I plan an overnight casserole since all the prep work is done the night before. This year I plan on making these festive Pumpkin Pie Cinnamon Rolls pictured above. November is my scheduled guest post on Rhodes Bake-N-Serv Blog, so I wanted to make something for an easy Thanksgiving breakfast.  

Monday, November 10, 2014

Apple Cider Coffee Cake

November is here which means baking is in full swing at my house. The holidays are my favorite time of year, so you probably won't see me stepping out of my kitchen until New Years!!!! If I've learned one thing about holiday baking having a well-stocked pantry is key.

I actually keep my pantry pretty stocked throughout the year, but during the holidays it's even more important! During the holidays grocery store shelves can become quite bare rather quickly, 
so keeping things in stock at home is a must. I am not the type of person to run around town looking for ingredients.  

As soon as I see all the holiday baking essentials in the grocery store I immediately grab a few and stock up. Most seasonal and baking items have a long expiring date, so there's no worry about stuff going bad. 

Items I keep on hand at all times are, eggs, milk, butter, canned cooking and baking items, dry pudding mixes, flours, various sugars, pie crust, pumpkin, pie filling, canned fruit, dried fruits, chocolate chips, honey, extracts, variety of nuts, baking cocoa, oatmeal, spices, biscuit baking mix, cake mixes, muffin mixes, and I even store buttermilk in my freezer

If you have most of these items on hand you can pretty much whip up an easy dessert in no time. I always have last minute guests and get together's, so coming up with a dessert rather quickly happens quite a bit in my house. 

Some of you might remember last year I went to Nashville and attended the Martha White Southern Baking Retreat. While at the retreat we got our hands dirty and and baked up several recipes using assorted Martha White muffin mixes.  If I learned one thing on that retreat it's that you can create so much more than just muffins using those little mix packets. All it takes is a few pantry staples and a little imagination.