Friday, December 18, 2009

Grandma's Gingerbread Recipe

Decorating Gingerbread houses is an activity my children look forward to participating in all year long! My all time favorite recipe is this one from Wilton - 'Grandma's Gingerbread Recipe'. It is truly a perfected piece of work! Now days, most craft stores have cookie cutters for sale that are the perfect size for small gingerbread houses.

Jenna is busted! Nothing like a little (or a lot) of sugar to really get things moving!

Grandma's Gingerbread Cake Recipe



Cookie Sheet
Gingerbread Cookie Cutters
Royal Frosting


5-5 1/2 cups of flour
1 t baking soda
1 t salt
2 t powdered ginger
2 t cinnamon
1 t ground nutmeg
1 t cloves
1 cup solid vegetable shortening
1 cup sugar
1 1/4 Cus unsulphured molasses
2 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven 375 degrees. Thoroughly mix flour, baking soda, alt and spices. Melt shortening in large saucepan. Cool slightly. Add sugar, molasses and eggs; mix well. Add four cups of the dry ingredients and mix again.

Turn mixture onto lightly floured surface. Knead in remaining dry ingredients by hand. Add a little more flour, if necessary, to make the dough firm. Roll out on a lightly floured surface to a 1/4 inch thickness and cut out cookies with Metal Gingerbread cookie cutters.

Bake 6-10 minutes for small to medium size cookies and 10-15 minutes for large cookies. Longer for bigger sides of the house.

If you are not going to use your gingerbread right away, wrap dough in plastic and refrigerate. Refrigerated dough will keep for a week, but be sure to remove it 3 hours prior to roling so it softens and is workable.

*Substitute 1 1/4 cups light corn syrup for molasses to make Blond Gingerbread.

Makes 40 medium cookies.

Royal Icing

When I was 17 I broke my Mom's Bosch mixer trying to achieve the stiffest peaks possible. Ooops! Be careful, and add a drop of water if you need to! The frosting should be soft and easy to spread... there is no need to have it be terribly stiff.


3 level tablespoons Meringue Powder
4 cups sifter confectioners' sugar (approx. 1 lb.)
6 T water

Beat all ingredients at low speed for 7-10 minutes (10-12 minutes at high speed for portable mixer) until icing forms peaks.

Yield 3 cups of icing.

Decorating Instructions: Ornaments With royal icing, pip outlines and facial features using Tip 3 and Disposable Decorating Bags. Use Wilton's Icing Colors to create different looks. Attach candy canes with royal icing.

Gift Tags Pipe outlines and facial features using Tip 3. Attach real ribbon bow with royal icing. Cut a tag from lightweight cardboard and punch a hole to attach to bow.

Place Cards Ice area where the name will go. Add name and trim with Tip 2. ipe outlines and facial features using Tip 3. Bake a small triangle shaped gingerbread piece to prop gingerbread cookies up. Prop upright by attaching triangle to back of gingerbread cookie using royal icing.

This is Wilton's famous Gingerbread Cake Recipe, and it is truly a perfected piece of work!

The items listed above, including the meringue powder can be purchased at Michael's. Enjoy!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Peppermint Fudge

Peppermint Fudge

Fudge layer:

2 ½ teaspoons butter, softened (no substitutes)
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 cups confectioners’ sugar (powdered)
6 Tablespoons baking cocoa
2 teaspoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cups nuts (optional)

Peppermint layer:

2 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 ½ teaspoons milk
½ teaspoon peppermint extract
¼ cup crushed peppermint candy

Line the bottom and sides of an 8 x 8 pan with foil. Grease foil with 2 ½ teaspoons butter; set aside. For Fudge Layer: In a small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese. Gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar, cocoa, milk and vanilla. Stir in nuts. Spread into prepared pan. Chill for 1 hour or until firm. For Peppermint Layer: beat cream cheese in a small mixing bowl. Gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar, milk and extract. Stir in peppermint candy. Spread evenly over chocolate layer. Chill for 1 hour or until firm. Using foil, lift fudge from pan. Gently peel off foil. Cut into small squares. Store in refrigerator.

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Chocolate Souffle

My 14 year old son found this amazing recipe online, and made it himself. It is an easy to follow, delicious recipe! This is one of our new family favorites!

Chocolate Souffle

From Food Network Kitchens

Prep Time:

30 min

Inactive Prep Time:


Cook Time:

20 min




6 individual servings


7 ounces finely chopped bittersweet or semisweet chocolate

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus for preparing the molds

1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

3 large egg yolks

3 tablespoons warm water

1/2 cup sugar, plus 2 tablespoons

8 large egg whites, room temperature

1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Confectioners' sugar for garnish


Brush 6 (6-ounce) ramekins with soft butter, then coat with sugar. Put the prepared ramekins in the freezer. (This can be done a day ahead.)

Set an oven rack in lower third of the oven and preheat to 400 degrees F.

Put the chocolate and butter in a medium heatproof bowl. Bring a saucepan filled with an inch or so of water to a very slow simmer; set the bowl over, but not touching, the water. Stir the chocolate occasionally until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Set aside.

Combine the egg yolks and warm water in the bowl of a standing mixer or large bowl and beat until frothy. Gradually add 2 tablespoons sugar, and continue beating until ribbons form, about 5 minutes. Very lightly fold the yolks into the chocolate mixture. (Rinse the bowl well, if using for beating the egg whites.)

Remove prepared ramekins from freezer. Put the egg whites in the bowl of a standing mixer, or large non-reactive bowl, add the lemon juice. Beat on medium until frothy; then gradually add the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar and increase speed to high. Beat until the whites hold a stiff but not dry peak.

Working quickly, fold about a third of the egg whites into the chocolate to lighten; then fold in remaining whites until blended. Gently ladle or spoon the souffle mixture into the ramekins, and place on a baking sheet. (Level off the surface with a straight edge, scraping any excess mixture back into the bowl.)

Immediately bake until the souffle rises about 1 1/2 inches from the ramekins, and the tops are touched with brown, about 18 to 20 minutes. Remove from oven, dust with confectioners' sugar and serve immediately.

Copyright 2007 Television Food Network, G.P. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Cookie Party

2/3 cup shortening (1/3 cup butter crisco, 1/3 margarine)
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg
4 tsp milk
2 cup sifted flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

Cream shortening, sugar, vanilla. Add egg and beat until light and fluffy (2 minutes) then stir in milk. Sift all dry ingredients then add to the wet. Divide dough in half and roll in saran wrap and chill for 1 hour. Roll and cut - only 3-4 times on lightly floured surface 1/8-1/4 inch thick. Bake on greased cookie sheet 375 for 7 minutes.

Rachel had an awesome cookie party last year! The kiddos went crazy decorating! She sent out evites, and got busy baking (it helps that she has two ovens and dishwashers). All her guests enjoyed their creations along with hot chocolate. Her sugar cookie recipe listed above really is amazing! So, treat your neighborhood to a 'cookie party' this year!