Thursday, August 22, 2013

Zucchini Fries

This is a great way to use up all that Zucchini from your home garden! Zucchini at the Farmer's markets and even at regular grocery stores is really inexpensive right now.


2 medium-large zucchini

1/2 cup milk

1 egg

1/2 cup parmesan cheese

1 cup bread crumbs

olive oil or canola oil cooking spray


Preheat oven to 425 degrees and spray a large baking sheet with the cooking spray.

Cut the ends off the zucchini and cut the zucchini in half. Then cut each of those pieces in half . Cut each piece in half again. They should be the size of french fries. If your zucchini is super large you might need to cut each piece in half again.

Mix the egg and milk together in a shallow bowl.  Mix the parmesan cheese and bread crumbs in another shallow bowl.

Dip the zucchini fries into the milk mixture and then the bread crumb mixture. Place each fry on the prepared cookie sheet.

Bake the zucchini fries at 425 degrees for approximately 25 minutes.

They should be crispy and golden brown.

Serve immediately! Kids will like to dip these in ranch dressing or warm marinara sauce.

This is a great way to get your kids to eat vegetables. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Mini Vanilla Shakes with Apple Pie French fries and Hamburger Cookies

My son is always at a pool, the beach, basketball courts, tennis courts, batting cages or Big Air (a trampoline park) but somehow he has an unbelievable amount of time to play video games. It is a struggle to keep him off the video games. So I thought he might like to help me make the hamburger cookies. I was wrong. But he did enjoy eating them!

These are super simple to make!


Vanilla Wafers

Keebler Mint Grasshopper Cookies


York Peppermint Patties

Red, Yellow and Green Icing


Using a Grasshopper cookie or York Peppermint Patty (the hamburger)  put a little red(ketchup) , yellow(mustard)  or green (lettuce) icing on top of the hamburger - top with a Vanilla Wafer.

Turn the hamburger over and add a different color of icing and another Vanilla Wafer. Try to get the icing to ooze a little bit over the hamburger so that the color shows a little.

This is a fun and easy treat for the kids to make!

A basket of Apple Pie Fries! Yum!


Pre-made Pie Crusts like Pillsbury

1 1/2 cups Apple Pie filing

1 egg

Granulated sugar


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll out the pie crusts. Put the apple pie filling into a food processor and press pulse until most of the chunks are removed and the mixture resembles apple sauce.

I despise cleaning out my food processor. Today I used my mini food processor.

Spread the apple pie mixture over the pie crust.

Top with the second pie crust.

Now crack an egg in a small bowl and add a splash a water. Mix well and brush the egg mixture over the top crust.

Sprinkle the top crust with granulated sugar.

Using a fluted pastry cutter - start cutting out your Apple Pie French Fries. Carefully place the fries onto  a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Until the fries are golden brown.

Now put some vanilla ice cream into some small juice cups or shot glasses. It will get melty and you can add a few Apple Pie Fries, a dollop of whipped cream and serve with some Hamburger Cookies.

Yum! A fun summer dessert!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Good Morning Breakfast Ring

I saw this recipe yesterday on Facebook. I tweaked it a little - because I am a recipe rebel and I love a brown sugar crust! The original recipe came from


1 1/2 tubes Pillsbury Grands Biscuits (use 12-13 biscuits)

4 tablespoons butter, melted

1/2 cup maple syrup

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup chopped walnuts


Spray bundt pan with cooking spray. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Combine melted butter and syrup in a small bowl. Set aside.

In another bowl combine the brown sugar, cinnamon and walnuts.

Place 1/2 of the syrup mixture on the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle 1/2 of the brown sugar mixture over the syrup. Lay the biscuits on top of the syrup mixture. Lay the biscuits with the edges overlapping forming a ring.

Top with the remaining syrup and brown sugar mixtures.

Bake at 375 degrees for approximately 30 minutes. Let the Good Morning Biscuits cool in the pan for approximately 5 minutes.

The invert the pan onto a serving plate. Enjoy!

Doesn't this look wonderful?

A super easy recipe - perfect for a brunch or to serve to weekend house guests.


Friday, August 9, 2013

Today is National Book Lovers Day!

I am a book lover! I ordered four books a few days ago from Amazon - they are scheduled to deliver tomorrow and I can not wait. I ordered two cookbooks and two novels!

One of my favorite quotes of all time "A house without books is like a room without windows" - Horace Mann

I have books in small stacks all over my house. Because I don't have a library the neat little stacks of books all over my house became part of the decor.

Books inside of a cupboard.

More books inside of a cupboard!

My Martha Stewart collection of books - inside of an end table.

More end table books! Lots of decorating and cookbooks!

Books in a small entry way table.

The top shelf of the entry way table.

An end table collection of Kennedy family history books. I also have a ton more Kennedy history books inside of the drawers of my coffee table. These are the prettier Kennedy books!

The books on top of one of my linen cabinets.

The Pottery Barn collection of books on top of another linen cabinet.

I often combine my book stacks with frames and candles.

Books on top of an armoire for some reason - I have a lot of the fiction books are upstairs.

So now you know - I am a book lover and I didn't even show half of my book stacks! Happy National Book Lovers Day!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Oreo Cheesecake

This cheesecake must chill in the refrigerator for 24 hours! You need to make it the day before you want to serve it!

Except for the whipped cream - make the whipped cream a few minutes before you are going to slice and serve.


1 1/2 cups Oreo cookie crumbs (about 24 Oreo's) finely chopped

2 tablespoons melted butter

1/4 cup chocolate chips


3 - 8 ounce packages of cream cheese at room temperature

3/4 cup sugar

5 large eggs

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons vanilla

1/4 cup flour

8 ounces of sour cream

8 Oreo cookies, coarsely chopped


6 coarsely chopped Oreo cookies

1 cup heavy whipping cream

3 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

Directions for the Crust:

Add the chocolate chips to melted butter. The warmth of the butter will melt the chocolate chips. Stir until the chocolate chips are completely melted. Then stir in the Oreo cookie crumbs. Press the mixture into the bottom of a 10" Springform pan. Set aside.

Directions for the Filling:

Place the room temperature cream cheese into the bowl of a stand mixer - beat on low speed until it is light and fluffily. Add the sugar and salt to the cream cheese mixture. Continue to beat on low.

Add the eggs, to the batter one at a time - making sure that each egg is completely beaten before adding the next egg,

Add the sour cream, vanilla extract and flour. Beat until the entire mixture is smooth.

Remove the bowl from the mixer and gently fold in the coarsely chopped Oreo cookies. Pour the batter into the Springform pan.

Directions for the Topping:

Sprinkle the top with more Oreo cookie pieces.

To Bake:

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Fill two 9" cake pans with water - fill them about 2/3 of the way up. Place the water filled cake pans on the bottom rack of the oven and the cheesecake on the top rack. The water filled pans will act as a "water bath."

Bake for 1 hour. Turn the oven off and prop the door open and let the cheesecake sit for another hour in the oven. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and let it sit on your counter for 20 to 30 minutes to completely cool. Then cover the pan with foil and refrigerate for 24 hours. Yes, if you want to serve this for dessert - you need to make it a day in advance.

Using a sharp knife - edge all the way around the pan. Then remove the spring ring. Place the cheesecake on a cake plate.

For Topping:

Serve with dollops of freshly whipped cream. Combine the heavy whipping cream, sugar and vanilla with your immersion blender. Decorate the cheesecake with the whipped cream. You could also add a layer or Oreo crumbs to the top layer of the cheesecake. However, I was out of Oreo's so I didn't add the crumb layer and it was perfectly fine. Cut very small pieces because this is a rich cheesecake.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Shark Week Cookies

Every year before Shark Week - I make special treats! My husband loves Shark Week! And the kids like my Shark Week treats! See the label section - on the right and click on Shark Week to see some of the treats I have made in the past.

Today I made some square sugar cookies and some shark sugar cookies. I love making sugar cookies!
I don't remember where I got the square cookie cutter - but I know that I bought the shark cookie cutter at Sur la Table and it was only one dollar!


3 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened

2/3 cup sugar

1 egg

1 tablespoon light corn syrup

1 tablespoon vanilla


In a medium bowl combine the flour and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl cream the butter and sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy. Mix in the egg, corn syrup and vanilla.

Add the flour 1/3 at a time and mix throughly after each addition.

Divide the dough in half and make two disks.Wrap each disk with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least two hour.

Tic Tock! It has been two hours.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Get out your parchment paper, cookie sheets, rolling pin and cookie cutters.

Roll out the dough between two lightly floured pieces of parchment paper. Cut out the squares and sharks. The squares took about 7-8 minutes to bake and the sharks 4-5 minutes. Let the cookies cool completely before you start the decorating process.

I happen to have a plethora of decorating sugars. They have a great colored sugar selection at both Williams Sonoma and Michael's. For this project I used blue and silver/gray sugars. I also used a little candy pearl for the eye.


4 cups powdered sugar

1/3 cup butter, melted

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 tablespoons milk


Combine all of the above ingredients and whisk until everything is combined. If the icing is to runny add an extra tablespoon of powdered sugar. If the icing is too thick add another tablespoon of milk.

Put the icing in a pastry bag or zipper top bag and snip a very small hole. Pipe the icing around the edges of the cookie. Then make a slightly  bigger snip and fill in each cookie.

While the icing is still wet liberally sprinkle each cookie and add the little pearl candy eye.

My trick is to decorate the cookies in a large shallow pan. Thus, the excess sprinkles stay in the pan instead of all over my kitchen.

Don't my sharks look regal with this beautiful silver sanding sugar?

These cookies take three to four hours to completely dry. And Don't forget to watch Shark Week starting August 4th on the Discovery channel.