Sunday, October 6, 2013

Overnight Apple Cinnamon Rolls with a Caramel Sauce

I love the idea of having warm, gooey cinnamon rolls first thing in the morning but who wants to wake up and slave in the kitchen. This recipe is the solution. October is my favorite month of the year so I made a few adjustments to incorporate apples for Fall.

Overnight Apple Cinnamon Rolls with a Caramel Sauce
Makes about 12 rolls

1 envelope active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup apple juice
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp Salt
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp
3 cups flour (may need a little more see directions)

1/2 stick unsalted butter room temp, separated
2 granny smith apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
1 cup brown sugar
1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon

Caramel Sauce
1 stick unsalted butter
1 cup brown sugar
4 tablespoons heavy cream


Add 1/2 cup of fairly warm water to a glass measuring cup. Sprinkle the yeast over the water and let sit for about 10 minutes. While the yeast is activating, add apple juice, sugar, salt, egg, vanilla and butter in a medium sized bowl. Add yeast mixture to the wet ingredients and mix well by hand or stand mixer. Add the flour one cup at a time while mixing. You want the dough to come away from the sides of the bowl and not be too sticky. If needed, add more flour one Tablespoon at a time until dough forms a soft ball. If mixing by hand, at this point you will want to take the dough out of the bowl and knead it by had for about 5 min. If using a stand mixer, continue to knead using the hook attachment for a few minutes. Place kneaded dough on a greased bowl and cover. Place in a warm area of your home and let it rise for one hour.

While the dough is rising, prep your apples. Once they are peeled, cored and sliced, place them into a microwavable bowl. Add 2 Tablespoons butter (half of your 1/2 stick softened and ready to go) and cover with plastic wrap. Cut a small slit in the plastic wrap to allow steam to escape. Microwave the apples for about 2 minutes. Be careful! They will be very hot and the steam will burn you. Let them rest a minute before opening. Drain the juices once cooled and place in the fridge to chill.

Punch down the dough after an hour. Don't worry if your dough didn't rise too much. It will depend on the temp of your home. Grease a 9x13 pan and set aside. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and roll out a 15 x 9 inch rectangle. You can use your 9 x 13 pan to help you estimate the size. Take the rest of your softened 1/2 stick of butter (about 2 tablespoons should be left) and spread it all over the dough. Combine the brown sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle it over the buttered dough. Take your softened apples from the fridge and line the apples evenly over the brown sugar mixture. Tightly roll up the dough and cut into even rolls. You can cut 12-15 rolls depending on the size you prefer. Arrange them into your baking dish (see photo below). Cover with plastic wrap and sit on counter over night.

This is what they will look like when you wake up in the morning. YAY! Most of the work is done. Now you just have to preheat your oven to 375F degrees. Remove the plastic wrap and cover them with foil. Bake for 25-30 minutes. I removed the foil with about 5 minutes to go so they would brown nicely. While they are baking, make your caramel sauce by adding the three ingredients together in a sauce pan set to med-high heat on the stove. Stir constantly until sugar is dissolved and the sauce has bubbled for about 3 minutes.  It will thicken while it cools so you may want to keep it warm until the rolls are ready that way it pours easily over them.

Tip: you can freeze the rolls without the sauce and enjoy later:)

Monday, April 22, 2013

Creamy Chicken Pot Pie

 It's snowing here in Denver so I am in the mood for a home cooked classic. This nostalgic dinner is not only delicious but easy! I promise:)I use a roaster chicken from Costco to make this even easier. You can also make the dough in the morning and keep it in the fridge until baking time.

Creamy Chicken Pot Pie
makes one 9" pie

Make one batch of my pie crust recipe found here

1 pound cooked chicken, chopped or shredded
13 oz. frozen mixed vegetables I use the one with green beans, carrots, peas and corn
1/3 cup onion, chopped
1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup flour
1/4 tsp. celery seed
1 3/4 cups chicken broth

2/3 cups milk
Salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.  Take chicken off bone if using a roaster or chop/shred chicken and place in large bowl.  In a saucepan over medium heat, cook onions in butter until soft and translucent. Stir in flour, salt, pepper, and celery seed. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Simmer over medium-low heat until thick. Remove from heat and set aside. Pour frozen veggies over chicken and stir. Roll your bottom crust and place in pie pan. Place the chicken mixture in bottom pie crust. Pour hot liquid mixture over. Cover with top crust, seal edges, and cut away excess dough. Make several small slits in the top to allow steam to escape. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until pastry is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Monday, June 25, 2012

BEST Caramel Corn {without using popcorn}

This recipe is different from my other caramel popcorn recipe. Some of the ingredients are the same but the result is VERY different.  Don't try to questions it:) Trust me, just go and get the ingredients and make it tonight! I promise it won't disappoint. I made this for my son's preschool teachers as their  end of the year gift. They loved it! Thanks Aunt Diane, you are the best cook I know!

Caramel Corn

2 bags of white puffed corn (I used the $2/bag Chesters brand)
3 sticks of butter (3/4 pound) YIKES I know but trust me
2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup light Karo syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp baking soda

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Cover a rimmed cookie sheet with wax paper. Set aside. Pour puffed corn into a large bowl. Set aside.  Melt butter in medium saucepan. Add sugar and syrup. Stirring constantly, boil for 5 min. Take off heat and add vanilla and baking soda. Pour caramel over puffed corn and mix until corn is fully covered. Pour covered puffed corn onto the wax papered pan. Spread evenly. Bake 40 minutes but be sure to stir the puffed corn around the pan every 10 minutes or it will burn. Allow to cool and enjoy. Store in air tight container.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

sweet gift idea

I made this for my father's birthday back in February. It's all his grand children's hand-prints in the shape of "I love you" in sign language. Right after I gave it to him we found out there will be another grandchild born this year. We are so excited!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Beef Stroganoff

This recipe is surprisingly fast. All my kids ate it up too so I will definitely make this more often.

1 pound top sirloin steak
1/2 tsp. Salt
1/4 tsp. Pepper
3 T butter, divided
8 oz. mushrooms
1 small onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup water
1 tsp. Beef bouillon granules or one bouillon cube
2 T flour
1 T Worcestershire sauce
rounded 1/2 cup sour cream

Slice steak into strips about 2 inches long and 1/4 inch thick. Generously salt and pepper both sides. Use more in needed. Set aside.

Melt 2 T. butter in large skillet over med heat and add mushrooms, onion. Saute 4-5 min or until mushrooms are tender. Add garlic Saute for about 30 seconds. Remove mushrooms, onions and garlic from pan and set aside.

Increase heat to med-high and add one more T of butter to pan. Add beef and saute while stirring for about 3-5 minutes or until pink is no longer visible.

Whisk water, bouillon, flour and Worcestershire sauce together until smooth. Add this mixture to the beef and then add mushroom mixture in as well. Bring to simmer and cook about 2 minutes so sauce will thicken. Remove pan from heat and stir in sour cream. Serve over egg noodles or rice.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Liebster Blog


I have not been a very good blogger lately. I could list many reasons why but really there is no excuse which is why I was so surprised to be awarded one of five Liebster blogs (meaning dearest blog) from noted home.  It's an awesome design blog with so many beautiful ideas I only wish I could recreate. Amber is a very talented woman not only in design so you should check out her blog! Since I was awarded this love I wish to pass it on. I will pick 5 blogs to award.

If you are selected, you need to:
Choose FIVE up and coming blogs to award the Liebster to (they must have less than 200 followers)
  1. Show your thanks to the blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them.
  2. Post the award on your blog.
  3. List the bloggers you are giving this award to with links to their sites.
  4. Best of all, have fun and share the love!
And the Liebster Awards go to:

1. Lisa over at Chocolate Cake with Cream. She needs to open a bakery. No Joke! She also has crafts on her blog too so I love to check out what she has created. 

2. Tamber's blog Colorful Cravings  has it all! Cakes, crafts, decor and many more.

3. Andrea and Megan's blog 2nd and Strand takes two different design concepts. One from the East coast and one from the West coast. Love it!

4. Annette is one of those super moms. Her blog Tips from a Typical Mom has great tips on everything and anything you come across being a mother.

5. Last but not least is 3 little chicks blog. I love her sewing projects. They really inspire me to get my sewing machine out more often.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Neiman-Marcus $250 Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

 This is my version of the Neiman-Marcus cookie. Apparently someone paid $250 for the recipe.  Sorry there isn't a picture. I could not find my camera charger before we ate the whole plate of cookies. This makes about 36 great sized cookies. Follow the baking steps from my classic chocolate chip cookie recipe.

1 cup butter
1 cup sugar 
1 cup packed brown sugar
2.5 cups blended oatmeal
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon baking soda
 1/2 teaspoon salt
12 ounces chocolate chips
1 (8 ounce) Hershey Symphony bar (grated)*


  1.  Cream the butter and both sugars.
  2. Measure oatmeal and blend in a blender to a fine powder.
  3. Add eggs and vanilla.
  4. Mix together with flour, oatmeal, salt, baking powder and soda.
  5. Add chocolate chips, grated Hershey Bar*.
  6. Roll into 1 inch balls and place 2-inches apart on a cookie sheet.
  7. Bake for 10 minutes at 375° or until golden.
    *tip: blend the chocolate bar in a blender until desired similar to grated pieces.
    recipe adapted