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Dilly Cucumber Bites

You know those times when you make a grand entrance at a holiday party with the nagging thought skittering around the back of your mind “I cannot eat more junk. If I consume one more chocolate treat I’m going to explode.”? Nah. Me neither. However, I understand these kinds of people exist. For all your veggie loving friends, I give you these delightfully fresh and light Dilly Cucumber Bites. Sliced cucumbers get a dollup of creamy topping tinged with fresh dill, garnished with tomato. Festive, simple and perfect for parties! Make a couple batches! As the not-so-bad-for-you option on the buffet, they disappear like lightning!

Dilly Cucumber Bites

Print Recipe for Dilly Cucumber Bites

Dilly Cucumber Bites
from JessFuel

4 large English cucumbers
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved (or quartered…depending on size)
1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, at room temperature
1 small (5.3 oz) container plain Greek yogurt
3 tbsp fresh dill, minced
1 tbsp powdered Ranch dressing mix (such as Hidden Valley)

Directions

  1. Slice cucumbers into rounds, about ½-inch thick. You can leave the skin on, peel them, or partially peel them for a striped look. Slice grape tomatoes in half (or quarters, if large) and set aside.
  2. In a bowl, combine cream cheese, Greek yogurt, dill and Ranch dressing powder. Mix thoroughly. You can use an electric mixer, but you can also do this by hand.
  3. Transfer the cheese mixture to a piping bag (if you don’t have one, you can use a large Ziplock bag with a corner snipped off).
  4. Pipe the cheese mixture onto the cucumber rounds, then top with a tomato half!
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Cranberry Jalapeño Bruschetta

This week, I’m sharing some of my favorite Christmas Party foods. Everyone needs a few good, go to items to bring when you’re invited out at the holidays! We’re starting off with a recipe I stole from a friend after she brought it to a party last Christmas. The beautiful red color of the cranberries is perfect for this time of year! With sweet and tangy flavor from the cranberries and heat from jalapeno, they’re bright and vibrant in your mouth! You’ll be snagging these little babies until the plate is empty!

Cranberry Jalapeno Bruschetta

Extra recipe for a genius use of the drained juice since I hate wasting things with so much flavor! After you’ve let the berries soak in sugar and drain the juice, you are essentially left with cranberry simple syrup with a little pop of jalapeno. I whipped up an amazing martini for my husband by combining 3 parts vodka to one part cranberry syrup (drained juice). Shake over ice and pour into a martini glass. I wish I had a little jalapeno for a garnish with the cranberry…alas, had to use a lime. Oh well. Delish!

Cranberry Jalapeno Martini

Print Recipe for Cranberry Jalapeno Bruschetta

Cranberry Jalapeno Bruschetta
from What’s Cooking With Ruthie

1 (12oz) bag fresh cranberries, finely chopped
1 C sugar
2 green onions, thinly sliced
2 jalapenos, seeded and diced
3 Tbsp fresh cilantro, finely sliced
1 (8oz) package cream cheese
1 baguette, sliced ½ inch thick on a diagonal
olive oil
additional cilantro leaf and quartered cranberry for garnish

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven 400 degrees.
  2. Place baguette slices on baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil.
  3. Bake 5-6 minutes until golden brown, let cool.
  4. In mixing bowl combine cranberries, sugar, green onions, and jalapenos; mix until combined.
  5. Let marinate for 5-10 minutes.
  6. Drain juice, add cilantro, mix well.
  7. When ready to serve spread 1 Tbsp cream cheese on each baguette, a dollop of cranberry mixture, garnish with additional cilantro leaf and cranberry if desired. Enjoy!

Crockpot Christmas Crack

Have you ever dreamed of being one of those people who hands out homemade candy at Christmas, but secretly loathe those with that much time on their hands during the holidays? Well my friend, this recipe is for you. I’ve been making cookies, candies, treats and tasty things at Christmas time for two decades (sheesh I’m old), and never have I found a goodie that takes less time and effort than this Crockpot Christmas Crack.

Crockpot Christmas Crack

This stuff is the easiest Christmas candy ever. EVER. You literally throw all the ingredients in a crockpot, wait a bit, stir, then drop blobs out onto wax paper to cool. Boom. Done. For the super fancy, you can drop the candy blobs into mini cupcake liners. Ooooooh, so very Martha, Betty, Paula, Ina of you!

Crockpot Christmas Crack

Bonus. It tastes incredible. Peanuty chocolatey goodness. You’d swear it came from an upscale sweet shop. Double bonus. It makes a TON. You’ll be able to gift a bag to your neighbors, your co-workers, church small group, kids sports team, cashiers at the corner store, postman, hairdresser, in-laws, out-laws, the butcher, baker and the candlestick maker. Plus still have enough to leave some for Santa, and make yourself sick off what’s left.

Crockpot Christmas Crack

Print Recipe for Crockpot Christmas Crack

Crockpot Christmas Crack
adapted from Just a Pinch

1 – 16 oz jar(s)unsalted peanuts

1 – 16 oz. jar(s)salted peanuts
1 – 12 oz bag(s)semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 – 12 oz bag(s)milk chocolate chips
2 – 10 oz bag(s)peanut butter chips
1 lb pkg white almond bark or vanilla candy coating (I used candy coating)
Layer all ingredients in a large crockpot (starting with peanuts). Turn the pot on low, cover with lid, and leave sitting for 30 minutes. Then, remove lid and stir to combine. Replace lid and leave sitting for another 15-30 minutes. Stir again and then spoon mixture on to wax paper, or if you are feeling SUPER fancy, drop into mini-cupcake liners. Allow to harden for at least 1 hour. Enjoy!

America’s Test Kitchen Deviled Eggs

As I’ve mentioned before, my husband doesn’t have much of a sweet tooth. In fact, the one food weakness he has is deviled eggs. Not just any deviled eggs. These.

Deviled Eggs02

I love my America’s Test Kitchen Cookbook. Something about the detail and testing that encompasses each recipe appeals to my logical nature. I don’t just want a recipe to be successful, I need to understand WHY it is so.

America's Test Kitchen Deviled Eggs - Bakerlady

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Happy Pi Day!

It’s March 14th! That means math rules the day and we get to celebrate by eating pie! Yes, the third month, the fourteenth day is very special around here. For it is the glorious day we celebrate the tool that helps us calculate all circular things. 3.14 = pi. March 14th = pie. Here are some of my favorites to make for this special day.

Pi Day - Bakerlady [Read more…]

Easy Irish Soda Bread

No Corned Beef Dinner would be truly complete without delicious Irish Soda Bread to accompany it. I am absolutely required to bring a still-warm loaf (or two) of this soda bread to my mom’s each year for St. Patrick’s Day dinner. It is pillowy soft inside with a gorgeous crusty exterior. This bread is also incredibly easy to make!

Easy Irish Soda Bread - Bakerlady

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The Best Corned Beef Dinner Ever

Saint Patrick’s Day is coming. Time for too-ra-loo-ra-loo-ra-ing about Molly Malone, Danny Boy and my Wild Irish Rose. Time for dancing a jig while not spilling a drop. Time for decking out in shades of forest, emerald, mint and moss. For celebrating my freckles and green eyes while lamenting my lack of red-headedness. And the most glorious of all, time for every grocery store from sea-to-shining sea to suddenly stock up on corned beef. This Saint Patrick’s Day, be the lord of the manor with this absolutely perfect, not a hint of dry meat anywhere, corned beef dinner. Made in a crock pot, this scrumptious classic will fill your home with rich mouth-watering aromas, and keep you laughing, singing and toasting with your friends and family instead of slaving over a hot stove.

The Best Corned Beef Dinner Ever - Bakerlady

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Stove Top Potpourri With FREE Printable Gift Tags

Do not eat this recipe. It is not food. Well, it is food…I mean obviously those are oranges and cranberries. But it’s not food you should consume. This is the most amazing, make your house smell incredible, holiday cheer inducing, dance around the living room smelling the air — stove top potpourri. Did you know you can fill your home with the smell of a your grandmother’s baking without creating a flour disaster in your kitchen? It’s true.

Stovetop Potpourri with FREE printable gift tag!

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Flayed Witches Fingers (Ham and Asparagus Roll Ups)

One of my favorite party appetizers involves pickled veggie wrapped in cheese and meat. These Flayed Witches Fingers are easy to whip together with all store-bought ingredients. I used a jar of pickled green beans I got from my mom-in-law, but you can easily use jarred asparagus from your local supermarket. Slap some softened cream cheese on deli ham and roll it around your veggie. They are sure to thrill all your ghosts and goblins!

Flayed Witches Fingers - Bakerlady

If you cut each finger into fourths and remove the gross sign, these are a great appetizer for any party. I’ve made them for football games and New Year’s Eve. They are always a big hit!

Love this recipe idea? Check out more Halloween party food on my Fabulously Freaky Halloween Fodder post. It’s full of devilish and delicious ideas!

Print Recipe For Flayed Witches Fingers

Flayed Witches Fingers2 (6 oz.) pkg. sliced cooked ham
1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 pkg. pickled asparagus spears (or pickled green beans)
Spread each ham slice with about 1 tablespoon cream cheese. Place 1 asparagus spear along the lengthwise edge of ham slice. Roll up jellyroll style. Wrap; refrigerate until ready to serve.

Plum Cake Bread

Great neighbors are hard to come by. I know someone (who shall remain nameless) who lives next to a family where the kids play a game called “Am I Being Murdered?”. An activity that’s such fun, it has to be enjoyed during every single hour of every single day. A jolly good time for the whole housing development I’m sure. On the other end of the spectrum are the good folks who reside just over the fence from me. Specifically the very talented gardener of the family, who delivers just picked fruit and vegetables to my greedy doorstep all summer long. I get nature’s bounty freely given with zero effort on my part. It’s simply divine. Just this week I’ve received zucchini, cucumber, apples (two kinds), and most delicious of all, plums. They arrive in bags and buckets. Fragrant, juicy, mildly tart and perfect.

Plum Cake Bread - Bakerlady

It didn’t take much convincing for my children to believe that plums are far better than candy. They have free reign to enjoy a succulent treat from the plum basket whenever they want. Both munchkins are now consistently a sticky mess of dribbly plum juice and I don’t even care.

Plum Cake Bread - Bakerlady
This recipe is a quick bread that tastes dangerously close to a cake. It’s sweetness and light with a hint of tart sprinkled throughout from the plums. Delicious. It would be perfect for a brunch, ladies tea, afternoon snack, or dessert. Basically, whenever you want to eat it, do.

Plum Cake Bread - Bakerlady

You can use yogurt instead of sour cream if that’s what you have handy. The batter is nice and thick so all those beautiful plum pieces won’t sink to the bottom of your bread. I also baked this in mini loaf pans as well as a 9-inch square cake pan. Both turned out with a perfect texture and golden crust. Just adjust your bake time accordingly. I started by baking about 30 minutes then checked on my cake bread every 5 minutes or so until it was done.

Plum Cake Bread - Bakerlady

Print Recipe For Plum Cake Bread

Plum Cake Bread
adapted from Allrecipes.com

1 cup pitted, chopped plums
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 cup butter
1 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup sour cream
1/4 cup brown sugar

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spray a 9×5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray, or line with parchment paper.
2. Sprinkle chopped plums with 1 tablespoon of flour in a bowl, and toss to coat. Set aside. In a large bowl, beat the butter, white sugar, and vanilla extract with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs. In another bowl, sift together 1 1/2 cup of flour with salt, cinnamon and baking soda. Stir the dry ingredients into the egg mixture, alternating with sour cream until the mixture forms a smooth batter. Lightly stir in the flour-coated plums, and pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Sprinkle the top of the batter with brown sugar.
3. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove from oven, and let cool in the pan 10 to 15 minutes before removing from pan for slicing.

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