37° and raining. That’s the forecast for the next week or so here in Seattle. Yuck. If it’s going to be that cold, it needs to be snowing. Huge pillowy flakes dumping from the sky. Fluffy mounds of white happiness. That’s what I’d like. Come on! The current weather conditions called for drastic measures in my kitchen. You know what I’m talking about…chili. Is there anything better on a winter day with a damp chill in the air? More on that tomorrow. First, the delicious beer bread I made to go with the chili. It’s full of sharp cheddar and totally non-hot green chili peppers. A perfect companion to a hearty bowl of warmth.
New Year’s resolution #1 is to get back to blogging. The whole, two kids in school at different times/becoming nothing more than a chauffeur thing has really thrown me off my game. Nevertheless, there were many brilliant recipes this year and so I bring you Bakerlady’s Top Ten of 2012. By popularity (that means you wonderful readers picked these), here they are:
Honorable Mention – Nanny’s Banana Pudding – I just can leave her off the list. It was so close to cracking the top 10. Probably my favorite dessert making memory of the year at her cabin with my sisters.
#10 Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Parfait — A dessert I made for a dinner party with friends that turned out to be absolutely gloriously delicious. And beautiful. Very impressive.
#9 Disneyland’s White Chocolate Raspberry Cookie — My favorite snack in the park and apparently a cookie that many people want to replicate at home. I got to share one at Disneyland this fall with my kids. They love it as much as I do!
#8 Cinnamon Roll Pancakes — A quick way to fancy-pants up your kids breakfast. Ah-mazing!
#7 Rolo Cake Bars — I made these for the guys who painted my house this summer. Quick, easy and absolutely scrumptious!
#6 Greatest Chicken Salad Ever — This wasn’t a new recipe since last January, I’ve been making it a long time. Thanks to the power of Pinterest however, many new folks discovered it this year.
#5 M&M’s Rolo Pretzel Bites — Possibly the most evil (in the best way possible) thing I’ve ever discovered. You’ll find yourself eating them like popcorn…until you remember halfway thru the batch that you really really really shouldn’t do that because you just consumed a half bag of Rolos without realizing it.
#4 Snickerdoodle Bread – Like your favorite cookie in bread form. Soft and delicious with a ribbon of cinnamon butter thru the middle and a crusty cinnamon sugar topper. Yum yum yum!
#3 Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Bars — These were a spin-off another popular recipe. The addition of the pretzels to smooth peanut butter and chocolate was awesome in my book, and yours too!
#2 Lemon Monkey Bread — My personal favorite discovery of this year. No boring caramel monkey bread for my readers. This stuff is warm and soft with a hit of sweet and great tang from all the lemons. Dee-licious!
And the number one recipe this year coming in with more hits this year than my entire site had in the history of Bakerlady (aka: a whole lot!)…
Reese’s Peanut Butter Bars!! I love how many of you found Bakerlady thru this recipe (thanks Pinterest). I enjoy all the stories I get to hear about making this dessert with your mothers, grandmothers and enjoying them in your school cafeterias growing up. I’m still pretty peeved that my school never had these things…but happy for those of you who did. Sort of happy anyway.
Thank you all for coming back to Bakerlady all year for more deliciousness. Have a safe and happy New Year’s celebration and I’ll see you all in 2013!!
I love throwing Halloween parties. Mostly because I get to make delicious food and give it disgusting names. Here’s a round-up of all the deliciousness I made this year and the nastiness I called it. Most of these items are easy to make (and can be done ahead of time) so you won’t be slaving away in the kitchen while your guests are having a goulishly good time! My hot hubby and I dressed up as Johnny and June Cash this year. We had a blast!
First of all, my apologies for being away so long. Bad Tonya. Bad bad. I have allowed my life to become too full. Actually, I thought with both my children heading to school this fall, my schedule would free up substantially. Apparently having more time is the great lie of having school age children. Why didn’t anyone tell me that I was about to become the Tonya Taxi Service? I feel like my life is spent in my van driving round in a 2 mile loop. Ok, enough complaining. I have resolved to suck it up and find time to share with you all. You deserve it. Regardless of how harried I feel on a daily (hourly) basis these days. Deliciousness still needs to be made. Women have successfully managed school, children, meals, housecleaning and jobs for decades – it’s the least I can do to get some recipes typed up! Starting with these dee-licious apple chips. No dehydrator needed!
We had the mother of all rainbow birthdays this weekend for my sweet six-year-old Madison. My house looked like a unicorn threw up all over. It was epic fun. A hyperactivity inducing, spectrum spectacular. Brightly colored craziness. We had a blast. The pièce de résistance of the party was a stunning six layer rainbow cake. It was truly a sight to behold. It requires a bit of time, but is totally worth it for an awe inspired gasp from your guests when you cut it open.
I was given a big bag of pears from my mom last week from the bounty of her orchard. Ok, it’s not a real orchard, just a few trees in her yard. But my mom’s green thumb is absurd. She’s like the plant whisperer. There’s so much fruit on her trees, you’d think she had fruit fairies painting them on at night. What? Fruit fairies are totally a thing. When I returned home that day, I had more pears from my neighbor on my front step. She’s also a crazy awesome fruit and veggie magician. See? I don’t need to learn to garden…people just give me produce. It’s luxurious. None of the work and all the rewards! Since I kill every growing thing I touch, I need people like this in my life.
Fall is here! This morning I was treated to my favorite weather on earth. Fog. Wonderful, misty, curl up with a book in front of a fire fog. Chilly damp mystery novel fog. I love it. I think it’s deep in my English blood to adore a nice foggy morning. Or so my Nanny tells me. It is quintessential autumn weather. I had my best ever experience with my favorite weather this morning at “walking club”.
In the past several weeks I made two monumentally bad choices. Probably more, but these two will probably haunt me the rest of my life. The first mistake was trying salt n’ pepper pistachios for the first time. Please hold your judgement until you find out the other thing I’ve never had before. Pistachios pale in comparison. I think since I first cracked one of those salty nuts I’ve taken down an average of a pound of them a day. No exaggeration. I’ve blown thru three 5 pound bags of those evil snacks in about two weeks. Fifteen pounds of nuts? That’s crazy! I just can’t get enough of them.
Who would have thought that cinnamon sugar, puffy warm bread and cream cheese filling would blend together in a totally divine delicious way? I always think of cheesecake with fruit or chocolates, never did I think of combining it with flaky golden pastry and sweet cinnamon sugar. Mind. Blown. Mouth. Happy.