Vanilla Drops

VanillaDropsTXT

I can’t believe that it’s already December. I feel like as I get older I have a harder time getting into the holiday spirit. And this year isn’t any different. I just can’t get into it. I don’t even want any gifts – there’s nothing that I want; there’s nothing that I need. I tried baking some cookies to see if it helps to get into the holiday spirit, but it just didn’t. So I can’t share that with you, but I can share some awesome cookies! And I’ll do just that.

We’ve been making this recipe for years in my family, and I don’t recall which cookbook it came from. I did not come up with the recipe. I just know that these cookies are super simple to make, and they always taste great. I love to use Penzey’s Double Strength Vanilla for a wonderful vanilla flavor. Make sure you use the real deal – not that imitation stuff. I think it really makes a difference.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Cream Butter and Sugar.

Add egg and vanilla and blend well.

Stir together the flour and salt. Add to the creamed mixture and blend well.

Drop the dough by rounded teaspoonfuls onto the [greased] cookie sheet, leaving 2 inches between each drop.

Bake for 8-10 minutes. The cookies should be slightly browned around the edges. The centers may appear to be a bit undercooked, but they will firm up as they cool.

Cool slightly on the cookie sheet and then transfer to wire racks to finish cooling.

MY NOTE: The cookies take 8 minutes in my oven. If I leave them in for 10 minutes they are crunchier, which I don’t like. I love a nice chewy cookie, which is how these should be.

GreenAndRedCookieDough

 

OrangeWithSprinkles

VanillaDropsRack

SnoopyPlatePileofCookies

My Dessert Tour is now on Groupon!

I have some pretty exciting news to share with you! My Dessert Tour is now on Groupon! SideTour was acquired by Groupon about a month ago. My Dessert Tour was hand-picked to be featured on the Groupon platform. So that means a lot more exposure! How exciting! So if you’re in the Philadelphia area, please come out and join me! I’d love to share my favorite desserts with you!

Groupon Dessert Tour

Mini Honey Crisp Apple Pies {Fall Favorite}

Mini Honey Crisp Apple Crumb Pies

I love fall. Here in Philly we had a taste of fall for about a week or so and then it got warm again! What gives? We had a cold front come through and the weather should be more seasonal now, which I’m happy about. One thing I love about fall: Apples! My favorite kind of apple? Honey Crisp! They are amazing and I’ve been a fan ever since I tasted one years and years ago.

There’s a Farmer’s Market right outside of my apartment building every Saturday and they have the BEST Honey Crisp Apple Sauce. It’s so good. We go through jars and jars of it.

I wanted to take a break from making Cupcakes, so I decided to make some Mini Honey Crisp Apple Crumb Pies. They were super easy and delicious! I will say that they are definitely better the same day that you make them. They are best served warm out of the oven.

These are the Nonstick Mini Round Tart Pans that I used.

INGREDIENTS

For the Apples:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 honey crisp apples chopped into small pieces
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 teaspoon apple pie spice
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of apple cider

For the Topping:

  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cold butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (you can use more or less)

Puff Pastry Dough

INSTRUCTIONS

Toss the chopped up apples in a bowl with the flour and apple pie spice.

Melt butter in a small sauce pan on medium low heat. Add the apples and brown sugar and let the apples cook down for about 10 minutes or so. You don’t want them to be too soft, you want them to have a little bite to them.

Bump the heat up to medium and add in two tablespoons of apple cider. You don’t want it to be a soupy mess – you want there to be just enough so that it’s a bit saucy. Once it thickens a bit, remove from the heat and set aside.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Lay your (thawed) Puff Pastry Dough on a cutting board. You want to cut out a circle a little larger than your Mini Tart Pan. Take the circle of dough and push it into your mini tart pans. Cut off the excess dough at the top.

Spoon some of your Apples into the mini tart pan.

Honey Crisp Apple Crumb Pie
You can see how much filling I added. Don’t put too much because you still have a topping to throw on top!

To make the topping:

Mix the flour, brown sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. Using a pastry cutter or a fork, cut the butter into the flour/brown sugar/cinnamon mixture. Do this until it’s nice and crumbly! You don’t want big chunks of butter.

Top each Mini Apple Pie with the crumb topping and push down lightly to make sure it gets down into all of the little holes.

Bake for about 15 minutes and enjoy!

Yield: 4 Mini Tarts.

MiniApplePie1ocf

MiniApplePie2ocf

I had mine with some amazing Bourbon Vanilla Ice Cream. A perfect fall treat!

Dexter Series Finale Cupcakes

One of my favorite shows on TV is Dexter. And now it’s over. *cue sad music* Last night the series finale aired, and I’m not going to spoil anything, I’ll just say that I wasn’t a fan of how it ended. My Sundays have always been filled with Dexter each season and now that’s never going to happen again. There is a Marvel comic book series for Dexter, so maybe I’ll check that out. I hear it’s quite different though.

Which season was your favorite? Personally I loved Season 4 – Trinity Killer. John Lithgow was amazing.

To celebrate the series finale of Dexter, I had to make some cupcakes!

I’m not going to go through the recipe or how I did anything, but if you have any questions whatsoever please ask in the comments and I’ll answer them.

dexter1
dexter2

dexter3
bloodside

Now I’ll have to find a new TV Show to obsess over!
Until then, I’ll watch my Complete Series of Mama’s Family on DVD!

 

Dessert Tour Tickets Only $10 [Limited Time Only]

SeptOctTour

So you all know I’m hosting  a Dessert Tour here in Philadelphia through SideTour.

So far I’ve hosted one, and there was a really good turn out.

I’m pretty sure everyone loved the desserts and they were all full by the time we left the last stop.

Cookies, Cupcakes, Blondies and Ice Cream. Yum!

I need to let you in on a little secret. I have a link that will get you a $20 credit towards my Dessert Tour. So the ticket that is normally $30 will only be $10. Cha-ching! How awesome is that? You just have to claim the credit and book by midnight on September 3rd. Totally doable, right?

Click here to get your $20 credit.

Click here to buy your ticket for the Dessert Tour.

It’s that simple.

Hope you to see you on the tour!