Monday, December 1, 2008

Leftover Turkey Chili

I had a lot of leftover turkey this year, which I am not complaining about because I love leftover turkey. We had some friends coming over for dinner the Sunday after Thanksgiving so I was looking for something a little different to do with the turkey, not just soup or sandwiches. This turkey chili turned out delicious, so I served it with a salad and some bread.

2 Tbs. olive oil
2 green peppers, chopped
2 cups of celery, chopped
2 med. onions, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced

1  4oz can diced green chiles (roasted and peeled) 
3 cups diced turkey, (cooked, light and dark meat)
3 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin powder
pinch cayenne pepper
1 tsp dried oregano

1 28oz can chopped tomatoes in juice
1 small can tomato paste
2 cups turkey stock (or chicken broth)
1 tsp brown sugar
2 Tbs cider vinegar
1 can white kidney beans, drained
1 can pinto beans, drained

1. Heat the oil in a large pan and add the onion,garlic, celery and green peppers. Stir over medium heat for 5 minutes, until soft.

2. Add the turkey, spices and chipotle pepper. Stir well and cook for 5 minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes in juice, 2 cups stock, and the tomato paste and stir well. Mix in the beans, brown sugar and vinegar and season with salt and pepper.

 3. Simmer for 30 minutes stirring occasionally. Taste, and add additional spice and or broth if needed. Serve topped with grated cheese and/or sour cream.

(Or at step three, you can put it in a crock pot on high for 30 minutes, then leave it on low or warm as long as needed.)

You can find the canned chiles in the Mexican foods section at most grocery stores.

Anadama Bread

This is a traditional bread from New England, sometimes called Colonial Bread. It is  made with molasses and cornmeal which makes it a little sweet. This is a great bread to serve with soup. This recipe makes two loaves.


5 cups flour

½ cup cornmeal

¼ oz yeast (1 pack)

2 ½  cups water

1 tsp salt

2 Tbs butter

½ cup molasses

Stir 1 cup of cold water into the cornmeal. Bring another cup of water to a boil in a saucepan and add the cornmeal mixture. Cook to thick, about 10 minutes. Add salt, butter, molasses and then cool to tepid.

Add ¼ cup warm water to the yeast and then mix that into the cornmeal mixture.

Add 4.5 cups flour and knead to stiff, about 10 minutes. If sticky, add more flour. Shape the dough into a ball and put in a buttered bowl, cover and let rise 1 ½ hour until doubled.

Punch down and divide in two pieces. Shape in loaves and put in buttered loaf pans. Cover and let rise to double.

Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Butternut Squash Soup with Ginger

This is a really delicious soup to make on a fall day. I added freshly grated ginger at two different times in the recipe to give it a lot of flavor and a little kick. 

After pureeing the whole batch in the blender in little tiny increments, I am really longing for an immersion blender so I can just puree right in the pan. If you use a blender with hot soup, remember to puree in SMALL batches, just about 2 inches worth of soup in the blender at one time. Otherwise, for some reason, the heat or steam from the hot soup will cause the lid of the blender to fly off and hot soup will spray all over the kitchen. Yes, this is learned from personal experience. 

2 or 3 butternut squash (about 4-5 pounds total)
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 cup diced onion
2 leeks chopped
1 Tbs. light brown sugar
2 tsp. finely grated fresh ginger
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 can light coconut milk
4-6 cups chicken broth
salt and pepper
minced chives or green onion

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut the squash in half lengthwise and clean out the seeds. Rub squash with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the squash, cut side down, on a baking sheet. (It is best to use a baking sheet with sides on it to keep the oven clean.) Bake until the squash is very soft, about 45 minutes.  

Heat the olive oil in a large stock pot over medium-low heat. Mix in the onions and leeks and cover the pot and cook about 15 minutes until tender.  Add the brown sugar, 1 tsp. ginger and the garlic. Saute another 2 minutes.

Using a large spoon, scoop the inside out of the squash and add it to the pot. Add the coconut milk and about 4 cups of chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

Puree the soup, adding additional broth as desired. Season the soup with salt and pepper, and add the remaining 1 tsp ginger and bring the soup to a simmer again. Serve in bowls garnished with chives.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Shrimp Purses

These are a  fancy looking appetizer that is actually pretty easy to make. They are baked instead of fried so they are low in fat and not greasy like fried wontons. I found the recipe in a magazine, but it is also on the Contessa foods website under "Kid approved foods".  My kids wouldn't eat them, but friends of mine who have more adventurous eater, loved them. The creator of the recipe called them Shrimp Krispies, but I think they look more like little purses.

It says to chop all the ingredients and then mix them. I minced the ginger root, and then just put it all in the food processor, which was much faster and worked really well. The package of wontons that I bought (in the produce area of the grocery store) came with about 48 wrappers and the amount of filling the recipe makes was exactly enough to fill them all.  The photo is a professional one from the Contessa website, but mine looked just about exactly like this. Not bad considering my 6 year old son "helped" me with them. 

  • 12 ounces cooked shrimp
  • 8 ounces cream cheese (low fat works fine)
  • 2 shallots, chopped fine
  • 1 teaspoon ginger root, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chives, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • Wonton wrappers
  • Sesame seeds

  • Sauce:
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine
  • 1 tablespoon cold water

Wet the edges of the wontons and then the corners together, twist and pinch tight.  Place on a cookie sheet, brush with water, and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Bake 10-12 minutes until golden brown. 

Serve with dipping sauce made by combining soy sauce, rice wine and cold water.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Not so great Peanut Butter Cookies

My youngest son is a peanut butter fanatic, so when he wanted to make cookies, we decided to make peanut butter ones. I put chocolate chips in some of the cookies which my kids loved, but I prefer the straight peanut butter cookies, no chips, nuts or anything like that. 

Well, they looked pretty tasty, but they were actually kind of dry. I won't bother to post the recipe because I don't think it is worth repeating. Fortunately high school students will eat virtually anything, so my husband took them into his school and they disappeared. 

Sunday, August 31, 2008

BakerLove is now on the Foodie Blogroll!

BakerLove has just been added to the wonderful food blog network called Foodie Blogroll. It is a collection of over 1800 blogs largely dedicated to food and a great way to find new recipes. 

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Mixed Berry Muffins

These are really delicious muffins. I think it probably has something to do with the half cup of melted butter that is in them. I found the original recipe at Under the Highchair and her photos of the muffins looked so delicious that I had to try them. I changed the recipe slightly, but mostly it is just the way she wrote it. They really are just as good as they look.  And of course I like the fact that they have oats in them so I can pretend they are good for you.

1 cup rolled oats
1 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup melted butter, cooled
1 cup flour
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup mixed berries, fresh or frozen

additional buttermilk
large grain sugar (Turbinado sugar crystals)


  1. In a large bowl, combine oats and buttermilk and let stand for one hour.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a 12-cup muffin pans with nonstick spray or liners.
  3. Stir the egg and the sugar into the oat mixture, followed by the melted butter.
  4. Add remaining ingredients (except berries) to the oat mixture and stir the batter until just combined.
  5. Fold in the berries carefully without over mixing.
  6. Spoon the batter into t he muffin tins, brush with buttermilk and sprinkle with sugar.  Place in the oven and bake about 10 minutes if using fresh berries, longer if using frozen berries.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Chocolate Crinkles

These are one of my husband's favorites. He  likes to take these in to the school that he runs and hand them out to the students. They are very chocolate-y and soft. So good.

Sift together:

1 ¾ cups flour

2/3 cup unsweetened Dutch process cocoa powder

1 tsp baking soda

½ tsp baking powder

½  tsp salt


Mix thoroughly:

½ cup margarine

6 Tbs  butter, at room temp

1 cup sugar

1 eggs

2 Tbs milk

½ tsp vanilla extract



Chocolate chips

Large grain sugar for coating

Cream the shortening, butter and sugar in a large bowl. Using an electric mixer set on high speed, beat until fluffy. Add the egg, milk and vanilla and beat on high about 2 minutes.

Reduce the speed to low, add the flour mixture and mix until just incorporated. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour or as long as overnight.

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees. Lightly butter baking sheets.

Using damp hands, form the dough into 1 ½ inch balls. Roll the cookies in sugar and place on prepared baking sheets, spacing 2 inches apart. Sprinkle with a few drops of water

Bake until puffed and slightly cracked on top but still soft, about 10-12 minutes. Let cool for 1 minute and transfer to wire racks

Lemon Butter Cookies

These are one of my most requested cookies. Sort of a lemon flavored sugar cookie. You can make the dough and shape it into balls and bake it right away. I prefer to form it into logs and then let them firm up in the refrigerator over night. Slice them into rounds just before baking. They come out looking very professional this way. 

I started making these cookies because we had a huge lemon tree right outside my kitchen window. Every year we got tons of lemons, and they were big, juicy, fabulous lemons. I made lemon cookies, lemon poppy seed muffins, lemon bread, limoncello... everything I could think of with lemons. Then the tree died which was very sad. But we planted a new one, so in a few years I should have some lemons again. We also planted a key lime tree which immediately began to bear fruit. It ripened one perfect little lime every day or two for a month. Just enough for nightly gin and tonics with fresh lime. Fortunately for my liver the limes have a fairly short season.


3 ½ cup flour

2 ¼ tsp baking powder

½ tsp. salt

1 c. butter

1 1/3 cup sugar

2 large eggs

2 tsp. fine lemon zest

1 Tbs. Lemon juice

lemon extract or lemon oil to taste if needed


1.Preheat oven to 400 degrees

2.Combine flour, baking powder, and salt.

3.Cream butter and sugar. Beat in the eggs, lemon zest and extract.

4.Gradually blend in the dry ingredients.

5.Divide dough into 3 pieces. Form into 1 ½” diameter logs and wrap in wax paper. Chill a few hours or up to five days.

6. Cut ¼” thick slices and arrange on ungreased baking sheet.

7.Bake for about 6 minutes and transfer to racks to cool. Dip in powdered sugar or lemon glaze to finish. Set glazed cookies on rack over waxed paper until glaze is set.

Lemon Glaze:

Powdered sugar



Lemon extract/zest/oil

Ginger Molasses Cookies

These are really delicious, chewy, ginger molasses cookies. The addition of orange oil or orange zest adds a really unusual touch. The cookies are also good with chopped Macadamia nuts or chunks of white chocolate mixed in.

I usually roll these cookies in a large grain sugar before baking, but this time I rolled them in pearl sugar for a different look.
Sift together:
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cloves
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
1 ½ tsp ginger
Mix thoroughly:
½ cup margarine
¼ cup unsalted butter, at room temp
1 cup + 2 Tbs dark brown sugar
1 eggs
¼ cup molasses
2 tsp finely grated orange zest or ½ tsp orange oil
2 oz chopped Macadamia nuts
Combine the shortening, butter and brown sugar in a large bowl. Using an electric mixer set on high speed, beat until fluffy. Add the egg, molasses and orange zest or oil and beat until blended.
Reduce the speed to low, add the flour mixture and mix until just incorporated. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour or as long as overnight.
Preheat an oven to 350 degrees. Lightly butter baking sheets.
Using wet hands, form the dough into 1 ½ inch balls. Roll the balls in sugar and place on prepared baking sheets, spacing 2 inches apart. Sprinkle with a few drops of water

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

Pretty tasty cookies and they have that “veneer of health” from the peanut butter and oats.  Makes 3 dozen cookies.

1 cup flour

½ tsp baking soda

½ cup butter

½ cup peanut butter (natural kind)

2/3 cup packed brown sugar

2 eggs

½ tsp vanilla

1 cup rolled oats

In a bowl stir together flour and baking soda. Set flour mixture aside. In a large mixing bowl beat butter with electric mixer on medium to high speed about 30 seconds until softened.

Add peanut butter and brown sugar to butter. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl. Add eggs and vanilla. Beat until well combined. Add flour mixture then beat on low speed until combined. Stir in oats.

Drop dough from a rounded teaspoon 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in a  375 degree oven for 8-10 minutes or until edges are golden. Remove cookies from cookie sheet and cool on a wire rack. 

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Crown Muffin Pan

I just got a new muffin pan from Williams-Sonoma that I am really excited about testing out. It is a Crown Muffin Pan that is designed to make big muffins with the fabulous, excessive top like you get at a bakery. Of course it is just an excuse for more streusel topping!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Chocolate Bran Muffins

These muffins come out a delicious looking dark chocolately brown color. They have high fiber cereal and some whole wheat flour in them so I feel good giving them to the kids.

1 cup bran cereal
1 1/2 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup oil
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup white flour
1/2 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup chocolate chips

Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Coat 12 regular sized muffin cups with butter.

lace the cereal in a plastic bag and crush with a rolling pin, or crush in a food processor.

In a medium bowl mix the cereal and buttermilk, let that stand for 5 minutes. Stir in the oil, egg and vanilla.

In another bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients and then add the cereal mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips. Divide batter evenly between 12 muffin cups. 

Bake for 16-20 minutes. 

Pumpkin Streusel Muffins

This round of pumpkin muffins I am just trying to make the best tasting muffin I can, not worrying about making them healthy. They turned out quite well. They looked great and were delicious. 

Pumpkin Streusel Muffins
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
6 Tbs. melted butter
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup applesauce
1 Tbs. molasses
1 t. vanilla

1 3/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp allspice

Streusel Topping
1/4 cup flour
1 Tbs sugar
4 T brown sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
3 Tbs. melted butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray muffin pans with non-stick spray. 

Topping: Combine all the dry ingredients. Add melted butter and stir until crumbly. Put in refrigerator until needed.

In a  large bowl, mix the first 7 ingredients until smooth. In another bowl, mix all the dry ingredients. Add the dry mixture to the wet ingredients and mix with a spoon until just incorporated. 

Fill muffin cups and sprinkle with the topping. Bake on center rack for 18-20 minutes. 

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Berry Streusel Bars (more sneaky bran)

Here is another attempt to sneak in some fiber. I thought they were delicious, but my husband wasn't crazy about them. The original recipe is from the Kellogg's All Bran site. Next time I think I would add some additional fruit, maybe sprinkle fresh berries on the jam.

Berry Streusel Bars

1 cup Bran cereal
1.5 cups flour
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup butter, cold
3 T water
2/3 cup spreadable fruit jam
1 Tbs melted butter

1. In a food processor combine the cereal, flour, brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add water and pulse. Mixture will be crumbly.

2. Remove 1 cup of mixture and set aside for the topping. With the back of a spoon, press the remaining mixture into the bottom of a 9x11" pan coated with cooking spray.

3. Carefully spread the fruit over the cereal mixture in the bottom of the pan. Add 1 tablespoon melted butter to the reserved topping and then sprinkle over the fruit. 

4. Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes or until lightly browned. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Buttermilk Bran Muffins

My current project is to try to find a bran muffin that even my husband and kids will like. They are all pretty much a strictly "blueberry muffin with streusel crowd".  

The first one I tried was from the "Fiber One" website, since that was the brand of bran cereal that I had in the cupboard. They turned out pretty well. My husband liked them a lot but the kids were not too convinced. I did change a few things in the recipe, so you can see the original recipe on their site if you like. The second time I made these I added raisins and now even the kids love them.

I would definitely make these again. They are great to have around when you want a snack or a breakfast to grab on the go. 

Buttermilk Bran Muffins
1 3/4 cup bran cereal
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2/3 cup raisons

1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees. 
2. Crush the cereal in a plastic bag with a rolling pin, or in the food processor, which is much easier. In a bowl, stir the cereal, buttermilk and vanilla together until well mixed. Beat in the oil and egg.
3. In another bowl, mix together dry ingredients. Add to the cereal mixture until just moistened. Add raisins.
4. Spoon into 12 muffin cups, greased with cooking spray.
5. Bake 18-22 minutes 

Pumpkin Muffin Trials

My mother has always made the most wonderful pumpkin bread, so I am using that as my starting recipe. I am trying to make it into muffins that are a little bit healthier, but still as delicious. 

Here is the original recipe:

Mom's Pumpkin Bread
3 cup sugar
1 cup corn oil
4 eggs, beaten
1 can (15oz) pumpkin
3 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp nutmeg

Mix sugar, oil and eggs.
Add pumpkin and mix well.
Add flour/spices and mix well. 
Pour into greased loaf pans.
3 large size foil pans, bake at 350 degrees for 50-60 minutes
5 small loaf pans, bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes

I cut the recipe in half, so now it makes about 12 average size muffins. Then I added some bran, cut down the sugar and substituted lowfat buttermilk for half the oil. They turned out pretty well. Next time I think I might try adding a little molasses to see what that would do. 

Pumpkin Bran Muffins
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup corn oil
1/4 cup lowfat buttermilk
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup pumpkin puree

1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup bran buds
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground cloves
3/4 tsp ground nutmeg

Mix bran cereal with buttermilk and let soften for 5 minutes.  
Mix together remaining dry ingredients and set aside.
Mix sugars, oil and eggs, add bran/buttermilk.
Add dry ingredients and mix.

Bake in greased muffin tins for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees. 

Monday, July 21, 2008

First Post

So, a little about myself to start. I am an artist, former gallery director, and currently a jeweler. My side passion has always been baking. 

I usually get obsessed with a particular type of recipe and work on it till I find one that I really like. A few months ago it was rice pudding, which is not really baking, but I think the real defining point is sugar, not the oven. 

I like to use quality ingredients, which I think makes a huge difference in the outcome. I also have a tendency to try to make recipes a little more healthy, ie: less fat & sugar, which drives my husband crazy. Lately I have been trying to sneak fiber in everywhere.

So, mostly this blog will be devoted to baking recipes, with the occasional side project.