Gingerbread Spice Cranberry Brie Bites

Today is the 20th of the month so it is time for the CRAZY Ingredient Challenge! Each month we pick two unrelated ingredients to create our recipes then blog about them. This month it is Cranberries and Gingerbread Spice (or gingerbread).

I have been with this group for a few months now and let me tell you, I know my fellow bloggers are going to have some great ideas. Be sure to check them out at the bottom of the page.

The inspiration for these Gingerbread Spice Cranberry Brie Bites came a few years back when we forgot to put the cranberry sauce on the table with the main course at Thanksgiving. It wasn’t until the cheese course (which we always had with dessert in typical French fashion) that anyone noticed. Before long several of us were adding it to the top of our brie. Delicious!

Cranberry Brie Bites


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Posted in Appetizers | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Lentil Soup Mix

I took a huge tray of cookies to the staff at J’s school this morning that included the Chocolate Cream Cheese Cookies and Chocolate Dipped Citrus Peel Cookies (sans the chocolate dip) plus some simple Almond Cherry Spritz cookies. I figure sugar is going to help them through this last week before vacation.

Christmas Cookie Tray

The class is going in on a gift for the teacher already, but we needed to do something a little extra. And I think this Soup-er Lentil Soup Mix will be much appreciated.

Lentil Soup Mix in a Jar

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Posted in Soup | Tagged , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Rumtopf Recipe and Printable

Rumtopf squareRumtopf takes the longest to prepare of any recipe I have on the site. It literally takes MONTHS! But that is all sitting time. The actual work is less than 5 minutes a month.

What is Rumtopf? Literally translated it means Rum Pot in German. In Danish it is spelled Rumkrukke. It is a way to preserve fruit when it is ripe to enjoy in the winter time. Quite simply it is fruit and sugar soaked in rum for months. Then in the winter you can enjoy both the liqueur and the fruit.

Traditionally it is made in a crock in rather small amounts. When I first heard of it last year and knew I was going to make it for gifts this winter so I made a big batch in a plastic container. Now I am putting it in mason jars with these printables and a cute bow, to give away to friends and family. Continue reading

Posted in Beverages, Fruit | Tagged , , , , , | 14 Comments

Chocolate Dipped Citrus Peel Cookies – Fill the Cookie Jar

Fill The Cookie JarIt’s the first Thursday of the month so that means it’s time to Fill the Cookie Jar! A group of bloggers bake some cookies based on a theme and blog about them. You’ll NEVER guess what our theme is this month! Go ahead, take a stab at it…


Ok, it was pretty obvious, I guess. Be sure to scroll down to the bottom to see the other awesome recipes everyone created, plus info on how to join us next month.

My creation this month was these incredibly easy and delicious Chocolate Dipped Citrus Peel Cookies. Yum! Pure yum!

Chocolate Dipped Citrus Peel Cookies

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Chocolate Cream Cheese Cookies – One Dough Three Ways

I love cookie dough that can be made into different cookies, especially this time of year. You just make up a double batch of the dough, or even triple it, and then add a little of this and a little of that and voila! Different cookies.

This Chocolate Cream Cheese dough is delicious and malleable making it great for rolling and shaping. Oh, and it is delicious too.

Chocolate Cream Cheese Cookies

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Posted in Desserts, Holidays | Tagged , , , , , | 30 Comments

Spicy Candied Sweet Potatoes – Tasty Tuesdays Link Up

Since this will probably be my last post before Thanksgiving, I want to take a moment to thank some special people.

First up is Tammy Doiel of Creative K. Kids for trusting me to co-host the Tasty Tuesdays Link Up the past two months. This will be my last one (for awhile?). It has been a blast, but now it is time to give someone else a turn. I will still be linking up weekly and I hope you will too, or if you are not a food blogger I hope you will check out the recipes.

Secondly is a pair of people. I have to give the nod to my Goddaddy Barry for having the sense to bring Sandy into our family. But the thank you really is for Sandy herself for being one of the most loving, inspiring and gracious human beings to ever walk the Earth. And she makes these amazing sweet potatoes every year for Thanksgiving. Now I have the recipe so I can make them whenever I want. And you can too.

So easy and so delicious. I made a meal of these with a side of leftover turkey the other day. Continue reading

Posted in Holidays, Potatoes, Side Dishes | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Mutato Pie

Conversation in my house on Saturday morning:

J: Mommy, I want a Mutato Pie.

Me: Okay, what is Mutato Pie?

J: It has mutagen on it.

(He just invented it on the spot. Unlike Pizza Gyoza, this isn’t based on anything in any episode of  the Ninja Turtles show, so I had free rein)

Enter Daddy.

J: Daddy, we are going to make Mutato Pie.

Me: I thought I could tint some whipped cream green, maybe on a chocolate pudding pie.

Dad: Hmm, how about mint chocolate chip?

J: Yes!

Dad: How about mint chocolate chip ICE CREAM pie?

J: Oh, yes! That’s it! That’s what I want!

Dad: I’d eat that.

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Panko Crusted Salmon with Orange Sauce

Wow, the two ingredients for the Crazy Ingredient Challenge stumped me for a bit this month: citrus and bread crumbs.

CIC - citrus and breadcrumbs

I’d be shocked I am the only one in the group to make something breaded with an orange sauce, but I have a secret ingredient. This Panko Crusted Salmon with Orange Sauce is simple and quick and delicious and healthy and can be made gluten-free if desired. Panko Crusted Salmon with Orange Sauce Continue reading

Posted in Main Courses - meatless, Seafood | Tagged , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Calabrese Antipasto and Tasty Tuesdays Link Up

Nothing says Thanksgiving to me more than Antipasto and Pate. Huh?

When you party with the Lalanne clan it is pretty easy to figure out the Pate part and our family recipe is oh so easy to make and delicious too. But the Antipasto, well I have to admit, I have no idea where the recipe came from originally. I don’t think it was from the Italian side of my family. It has always been served on the French side with the salad course at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Go figure.

A little research tells me this is technically a Calabrese Antipasto. Most recipes call for cauliflower and carrots, but our version has never had any fresh stuff in it. It also doesn’t need any cooking, just dump everything together and chill before serving.

It is traditionally served “before pasta”, but as I said above we have it with the salad course before the turkey at Thanksgiving or ham at Christmas.  It would also make a good appetizer on some crackers or crostini. Or just eat it straight out of the bowl like I do, ooops, uh, strike that last comment. Continue reading

Posted in Appetizers, Relishes, Jams and Jellies, Seafood | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Brandied Whole Cranberry Sauce

Brandied Whole Cranberry SauceI am a big fan of cranberries. I like them dried and I like homemade cranberry sauce. But, I can’t stand … uh… do not really care for jellied cranberry sauce straight from the can sliced with the ridges still on it. If you do, enjoy! I like my cranberries plump and tart with a little sweetness.

M’s mom makes this version for Thanksgiving and Christmas. The trick to keeping the cranberries big and whole is to bake them low and slow. And adding some brandy or rum, well that just makes it extra tasty. Continue reading

Posted in Fruit, Holidays, Relishes, Jams and Jellies | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments