19 February 2012


I LOVE THE NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS!!! I was so excited, yet nervous, for the Super Bowl this year.  If you aren't a football fan, my Patriots were playing the New York Giants, which you probably don't care if you aren't a football fan, but I thought I would throw that in there :)  

I was never very interested in watching football while growing up, my family just didn't do that.  When I met my husband, I learned to love the sport, everything about it.  I will admit, I originally picked my favorite team by the colors and the cutest quarterback ever - TOM BRADY!  But, over the years, I have truly come to love this team, every one of the members and the game of football itself.  I long for the Sunday afternoons, sitting on the couch with Scott & watching the games.  Of course I love the eating that comes along with it too :)

We didn't have a party to go to or even have anyone over the the big event this year, as we just wanted to really watch the game. So I decided to try my hand at a new recipe that we both love when we go to BBQ restaurants.  Beef Brisket.  A client of mine had shared her recipe with me awhile back, so I dug through my emails and realized how simple it was.  

Be ready for your mouth to water from the smell oozing from your oven all day long, as you feel like you are in a restaurant that is smoking meat.

Sorry the meat got messed up in the middle, I was so excited when it came out of the oven to try it, I stuck my fork in before snapping a picture - I had to make sure it was edible, and OH MY, it was! I couldn't believe how easy this was, and yet tasted like something that took so much work.

I also love Costco, and always eye the briskets when shopping, but have felt intimidated before at the thought of cooking one. NOT ANYMORE!


About 3-4 lbs. brisket - I think mine was actually closer to 5

Sprinkle the following seasonings over the meat:
4-5 TB (tablespoon) of liquid smoke
4  TB of Worcestershire sauce
1 TB of celery salt
1 TB of onion salt
1 TB of garlic salt or powder

Wrap in foil and refrigerate overnight (until ready to cook it).

Bake at 250 – 275 for 5 hrs.  –  The only difference would be how well done you like it.  

(I cooked mine @ 275ยบ for around 5.5 hours, and it was PERFECT!!!)

We sliced it and put it on homemade buns with some BBQ sauce that is made close to my hometown, Countryside Barbecue Sauce. I will for sure be making brisket at home a lot more now after realizing how great & easy it is!
Even if you think you can't cook, YOU CAN DO THIS!  AND people will love you for it!


20 December 2011

My husbands family had this great recipe for Cherry Mash.  In northern Iowa it is similar to King Bings, and southern Iowa & northern Missouri they call it Cherry Mash, which is actually made in St. Joseph, Missouri.  Do you have a similar product in your neck of the woods?
The homemade version is spot on for the prepackaged candy, but better because YOU made it and you get so much more for your money!
If you aren't familiar with Cherry Mash or King Bings, just know that if you like Chocolate, Cherry & peanuts, you will LOVE this recipe!

Cherry Mash Candy

Cherry Mash Candy
2 cups Sugar
16 large Marshmallows
5 oz can Evaporated Milk
1 tsp Vanilla
10 oz Cherry Chips
12 oz Milk Chocolate Chips
3/4 cup Peanut Butter
10 oz Salted Peanuts, Chopped

Mix sugar, marshmallows & evaporated milk.  Cook over low to medium heat until melted.  Boil 3 minutes, stirring constantly.

 Cook over low to medium heat until melted.  Boil 3 minutes, stirring constantly.

 Remove from heat; add vanilla and cherry chips.  Stir until melted.
*I have learned to pour the chips slowly in with one hand while stirring with the other hand so the chips don't clump.  If they clump its ok, it just takes longer to melt them.

Spread in a buttered 9x13 pan.

In another pan, melt chocolate chips and peanut butter.

  Add chopped peanuts and stir in.

Spread this mixture over the cherry mixture.

Refrigerate to set.  Cut into squares after they are set.  

These also freeze great!  

My dad longs for these every year.  He asks about 100 times starting the month before Christmas up until we get together, if I have made them yet or just confirming that I am making his "Cherry Fudge" as he calls it.  
I do store these in the refrigerator when they aren't sitting out at our get togethers.  They just seem to hold up better over the time that they last.


19 December 2011

I was really going to try to post regular posts, but with trying to work 3 different part time jobs for the last month & a half, life has been a little busy.  I like it, just haven't had much time or energy to come home & write.
I have had time for some baking over the past month and did remember to photograph most of the recipes, just never got around to sharing until now.

There are a lot of different party mixes out there, but this Sweet Party Mix is my FAVORITE!!

This is such an easy recipe & so addicting!

Sweet Party Mix
10 cups Crispix Cereal
2 cups Peanuts
2 cups Cashews
1/2 bag Pretzels (sticks or regular pretzel shaped) I used the holiday ones this time
1 cup Brown Sugar
1 stick Butter
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
1/4 cup White Karo Syrup

(of course you can use whatever mix of cereal/nuts you like)

Combine brown sugar, butter and karo syrup.  Microwave for 2 minutes.  Stir.
Microwave 2 more minutes.

Remove and add baking soda.  Stir.  This should foam up as it sits.

Place Crispix, nuts & pretzels in a paper grocery sack.

Pour syrup mixture over cereal mixture in bag.  Shake to coat.  (I sometimes use a couple large spoons to help toss the mixture, just be careful the syrup is really hot.)

Microwave bag 2 minutes.  Shake.
Microwave 2 more minutes.
Shake and place mixture on wax paper to dry.

Let it cool & put in covered containers to store.  This mix freezes well, so make ahead of time and pull out a few hours before serving.


19 November 2011

So, I learned my first valuable lesson in blogging last night.  SAVE your work as you go!  I had a whole wonderful blog with recipe typed up & hit something wrong & everything was gone:(  I usually can find where to recover stuff, but I had no such luck last night.  I was so discouraged I had to go to On The Border & have a margarita with my husband.  Let me tell you, it was really good!

Let's begin again.  I won't put everything into one blog that I had last night, so it was probably a good thing.  I have to learn how to shorten things up & get to the point.

I started a part-time holiday job yesterday at Williams Sonoma.  Probably one of my favorite places in the world, besides my massage table.  Somehow there has to be a connection between massaging people & loving food, right?

There are so many great things about Williams Sonoma I can't get to them all today.  Two of the awesome products around for the holidays are the Pecan Pumpkin Butter and the Spiced Pecan Pumpkin Quick Bread Mix.  

Of course you can do the traditional things with them like make bread and pumpkin pie or you can make Williams Sonoma Ooey Gooey Pumpkin Bars!  I choose the latter.

Lets begin with the recipe for OOEY GOOEY PUMPKIN BARS, by Williams Sonoma

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 13x9" baking pan.

For the crust:
1 Package (1 lb. 2oz) Spiced Pecan Pumpkin Quick Bread Mix*
1 Egg
8 TBLS. (1 stick) Unsalted Butter, melted

In the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the flat beater, combine the quick bread mix, egg and melted butter.  Beat on low speed until the ingredients come together, 1-2 minutes.  Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and spread out evenly.  Press the crust down until it feels compact, using the back of a measuring cup can help.
Wash & dry the mixer bowl and beater.

For the filling:
1 Package (8oz) Cream Cheese, at room temperature
1 Jar (13.5oz) Muirhead Pecan Pumpkin Butter*
3 Eggs
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
8 TBLS. (1 stick) Unsalted Butter, melted
1/2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
15 oz Confectioners' Sugar

In the mixer bowl, combine the cream cheese and pumpkin butter.  Beat on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute.  Add the eggs, vanilla, melted butter and cinnamon.  Beat until combined, about 2 minutes.  Add the confectioners' sugar and beat well, about 2 minutes.

Spread the filling over the crust.

Transfer to the oven and bake for 40-50 minutes.  Do not over bake; the center should still be a little gooey (hence the name).  To test for doneness, gently shake the pan; you should see a slight jiggle in the center.  Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for at least 20 minutes.  Cut into bars.  Makes 16 large bars or more smaller ones.  ENJOY!!

So, there is my first of many recipes I want to share.  I will get better at taking pictures and explaining stuff, but I just had to get the first one done to see how it goes.

I am now off to another gig I took on, demo-ing Soda Stream Machines.  It is a make your own soda/sparkling water machine.  Saves money, the environment & is healthier than regular soda.  I will give you more information in my next session.

Have a fabulous weekend!  And make some Ooey Gooey Pumpkin Bars!

09 November 2011

Lets begin again.....

So it has been a couple years and I am really ready this time to start blogging!  I go through my daily life doing things that I want to let the world know about without posting every detail on other outlets.  I want to give people the option to read my thoughts & ideas if they choose, so a blog is the best way to do that.
Please join me in this journey through life, trying to enjoy as much as I can whether it be food, travel, shopping, or whatever it is going on in my life or mind.

I think we are all on a journey to finding our true selves and that takes us on different paths in different parts of our lives.  I am a professional massage therapist by day but my first passion in life is food!  Whether it be baking, cooking, eating, sampling, I love it all!  I love to try new recipes & cook for my husband.  Don't get me wrong, we also LOVE to eat out!  It seems contradicting, that why when I love to cook do we eat out so much, but there is just something about someone else doing the cooking & cleaning up that can't be beat.

With the holidays coming up, it is a great time to bake the classic recipes but also try some new ones.  I have found another website called www.pinterest.com, where everything brilliant on the web is all in one place.  Check it out, it's so cool!

Enough rambling, lets begin......

16 August 2009


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04 August 2009

Getting Started

Well, I am doing it. Taking charge and getting involved in another form of communication / technology. This world seems to be crazy with ways of communicating and connecting with friends and family all over the country / world. I read several different blogs for several different reasons and always think, "I want to share what's on my mind and my experiences". So here it goes. We will see what happens and if I am able to post regular information that is worthwhile to others. With Facebook and Twitter and now a blog, life is sure busy :) , not sure how am going to find the time to continue working and with my plans for opening a new business soon. Signing off for the evening, we will see what tomorrow brings!