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With the holidays approaching, I usually feel tempted to take the easy route and bake a classic cookie (sometimes even from a package) for our family Christmas party.  I rarely have the time to expand my recipe book and year after year, everyone seems to bring the same selection of desserts- tasty but predictable. But this year, I finally found a great recipe that will be sure to catch everyone’s attention. This easy and delicious peanut butter cookie recipe offers a great way to get your kids involved in holiday baking, too. In addition to regular peanut butter, the peanut butter chips in this recipe create smoother dough that helps replicate real buttons. To mimic the shape of a button, each cookie gets an imprint of a small cup or any round shape- a perfect task for kids to tackle. After baking the cookies for a short time and letting them cool, employ the help of the kids again to tie on the finishing touches. Red licorice strings wrap through the middle holes adding a sweet burst of color.  
Hanukkah foods are traditionally fried, cheesy, and yummy. In addition to the always-popular latkes (potato pancakes) and sufganiyot (jelly-filled doughnuts), satisfy your guests this year with this equally delicious recipe. By preparing it the night before, this dish becomes a convenient fix when family and friends arrive to celebrate. Simply pop them in the oven for about 20 minutes and serve. Hosting and entertaining won’t need to distract you from enjoying the holiday season this year. This recipe provides plenty of pastries to go around so you don’t find yourself running back to the kitchen for some last minute cooking. Just sit back and watch as everyone (Jewish or not!) devours these puffy square delicacies.   Cheese Danish Pastries (Delkelekh) recipe from the New York Times Ingredients For the Dough:
My favorite part about the end of summer is berry season – the guarantee that I can put blueberries on my cereal in the morning, because my family always picks too many at the start of the season.  A great recipe for those antioxidant rich, little fruits is a Blueberry Cobbler. Gooey, warm and sticky sweet it's a perfect way to eat up those blueberries. It's also a wonderful dessert to serve at your Labor Day party or gathering. Serve it  with ice cream and you're going to have friends, guests and family raving about your cooking skills.  Blueberry Cobbler Ingredients: For the filling 6 cups (3 pints) blueberries 1/2 cup sugar 1 tablespoon cornstarch 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt For the topping
Cake Batter Truffles
Sometimes I get baking cravings. My exploration to satisfy this sweet tooth begins by reading a few recipes, choosing one as a basic guideline, and finding a few of my own twists to throw into the mix. My goal for this baking adventure - Funfetti Cake Batter Truffles. Recipes for cookie dough chocolates and Oreo truffles had caught my eye before, but I specifically wanted to use cake batter with rainbow sprinkles. Every kid knows that Funfetti consists of much more than vanilla cake mix with a few sprinkles stirred in. It brings back the memory of elementary school birthday parties when mom carries a batch of frosted cupcakes to school for all of your friends. Or those special occasions when the Funfetti pink frosted cake would show up at the front door followed by friends and family. Just like the cake itself, these truffles turned out fun, delicious, and far more than a spoonful of rainbow sprinkles. Cake Batter Truffles Ingredients:
The #1 New York Times best-selling book, The Help, is coming to the big screen on August 10! If you’re lucky enough to live in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Detroit, Charlotte, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Baltimore, Houston and Dallas-Ft. Worth, you can purchase tickets to a special 7 pm showing on August 9. Call 1-800-347-6396 for more information. If your book club hasn’t read the book or would like to do a pre- or post-movie party, here are some entertaining ideas from the folks at DreamWorks. Pecan Pie By Jackie Smith - recipe courtesy of Ingredients: 1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust 3 eggs, beaten 1 cup dark corn syrup 1 cup white sugar 1/4 cup melted butter 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 cup pecan halves Directions:
While I’ve quite the sweet tooth, cake doesn’t thrill me. My fork navigates around the cake, scooping up the frosting and whipped topping instead. When my summer birthday comes around, I instead request a mixture of all of my favorites: berries, whipped topping, pudding, and angel food cake. Combined into a trifle bowl, I blow out the candles on a towering, layered creation. While it’s become my birthday special, this trifle makes a wonderful dessert for summer entertaining of any kind. Refreshing, seasonal, and surprisingly simple, throw this dessert together in a pinch to add a delicious and decorative touch to any spread. Skeptical of the simplicity? Take comfort in the fact that my 12-year-old sister has taken on the role of whipping up this layered berry treat every year. Not only does this trifle change up traditional dessert routines, it also removes the guilt that inadvertently accompanies chocolate cakes, brownies and cookies. Made from light ingredients and fresh fruit, your sweet tooth’s summer satisfaction doesn’t need to set back your diet.
Although spring has arrived – the weather in Boston has barely made it out of the 30s and my winter jacket still holds a prominent place in my closet. It might be my optimistic thinking as I flip through friends’ pictures from their winter vacations, but I went in search of a delicious spring recipe that will be perfect for any outside party. However, until it warms up enough to venture outside for a BBQ or picnic, I guess I will have to settle for eating this cake indoors! Pink Lemonade Layer Cake From Paula Dean on Food Network Ingredients:
peanut butter cookies
I love peanut butter. Smooth, creamy, chunky? Yes, please! March 1st was National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day - a whole day devoted to Washington Carver’s tasty discovery. As a peanut butter enthusiast, I want to share one of my favorite peanut butter recipes with you. If your child loves peanut butter as much as I do, these will wash down with a nice glass of milk in no time! If sharing with any neighborhood children or your child’s classmates, please be aware of peanut allergies! Peanut Butter Cookies From Betty Crocker Makes 30 cookies Ingredients:
A few weeks ago during the Super Bowl, celebrity chefs Mario Batali, Emiril Lagasse, Guy Fiore, Tim Love along with Major League Baseball pitcher, Jamie Moyer, hosted their annual Spaghetti Western – an exclusive, celebrity-packed Texas-inspired dinner. They served this apple fritters dessert that used Macallan Sherry Oak 12 Years Old Whisky. It sounded amazing and definitely worth sharing. The Macallan Apple Fritters Created by Mario Batali Ingredients: 2 large eggs ¼ cup whole milk 1 cup all-purpose flour ¼ cup sugar 1/4 cup The Macallan Sherry Oak 12 Years Old Whisky, plus 2 ounces for the topping 8 cups extra-virgin olive oil, for deep-frying 6 green apples, such as Granny Smith, peeled, cored, and sliced into ½-inch-thick rounds 2 cups vanilla gelato Cinnamon, for dusting Directions: