Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Babycakes: A Sweet Treat

Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Icing, Dipped in Chocolate... Yes Please! These babycakes are always a hit. I have taken them to potlucks, given them as gifts and use them for dessert with company. They are super easy to make, but do take a little bit of time. Definitely try these out for your a Christmas dessert or to give away to loved ones. They are worth it!

Here is what you need to make 1 batch (4 dozen) babycakes:

1 box of Red Velvet Cake, 1 jar of Cream cheese frosting and either white or milk chocolate to dip them in.

Step 1:

Make your cake using the directions on the box. I made 2 round cake pans, but a 9 x 13 pan is just fine too!

Step 2:
Wait for your cake to cool and then crumble it all up in a mixing bowl. It really is fun to crumble up a whole cake! My girls love to help at this part!

Step 3:

Put 1 container of cream cheese icing in the bowl with the cake.

Step 4:

Mix together. I used my mixer, but you could just as well crumble it all together with a spoon or your hands!

Step 5: Place bowl in refrigerator or freezer for an hour or overnight. I only put the bowl in the refrigerator for an hour. It really helps to keep the cake from sticking to your hands for the next step!

Step 6:

Place wax paper on a cookie sheet.

Step 7:

Grab a spoon and start forming cake balls!

Step 8:

Cover with foil and place in the freezer overnight. If you don't have time to freeze overnight, just stick in the freezer for another hour and you should be good to go!

When I made these, I made two batches the night before and froze overnight. The next morning I did the next step! Freezing the cake balls helps the cake to stay together so it is easier to dip in chocolate.

Step 9:

Melt your chocolate, grab a spoon (or 2!) and start dipping the babycakes into chocolate. Place them on wax paper to make it easier to take them off once they have dried. You can also use both milk and white chocolate and then drizzle the milk on white and white on milk. It makes them look a little but fancy!

I have also made these babycakes using lemon cake, cream cheese icing and white chocolate during the spring time and they were delish! You can experiment with different types of cakes and icing. I am sure anything you choose will be divine!

I would love to hear what you think about these! Leave a message and let us know how your family likes them!

Fresh Spaghetti Ala' Sarah and Katie

This dish was inspired after watching "Eat, Love, Pray." There is some oh so yummy authentic Italian dishes in this movie and we were craving some Authentic Spaghetti.... so we did the only natural thing. Went to the store, made our our version of spaghetti and had a wonderful second dinner- at, oh 9:00 at night!

This is a simple recipe with few ingredients. Here is what you need for 4 people:

8 vine ripened tomatoes
1.5 oz Fresh Basil
4 Garlic Cloves
Olive Oil
1 - 13.5 box of Spaghetti

Step 1: Boil and cook your Spaghetti noodles

Step 3:
Dice the tomatoes and place them in a skillet with 2 TB olive oil.

Step 4: Dice up garlic cloves and place in skillet with tomatoes

Step 5: Roll up your basil leaves and slice. Place in skillet with your sauce.

Step 6: While everything simmers and gets flavorful, top your bread slices with garlic and olive oil. Bake at 375 degrees until nice and crispy.

Step 7: Serve your hot spaghetti with your homemade Fresh Sauce, with a side of hot bread!

If you have any sauce left, it is tremendous on top of your bread. Very similar to bruschetta!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Open Faced Tacos

If you are a toppings lover, like me and always get frustrated b/c there is just not enough room in a taco shell to fit all of your beloved tomatoes, guacomole, sour cream, salsa, cheese, olives etc. You will love the open faced taco! You can pile all of your toppings on top, as many as you want- the sky is the limit!

Enjoy this meal and spice it up in your own way for your family. Let us know how it goes!

Here is what you need for a family of 4:

1 lb ground beef, cheese, taco shells, taco seasoning, *refried beans, *tomato, *sour cream, *lettuce, *taco sauce and *mexican rice (*Optional ingredients. Choose what your family loves!) You may have some great leftover toppings from your chop salad yesterday. If you want to make a meatless meal, the ground beef could totally be omitted and you could use the refried beans as your base.

Step 1: Preheat your oven to 350. Then, brown the hamburger and drain Isn't my husband great? He is my offical meat browner, he does it so well!

Step 2: Add the taco seasoning and follow directions on the packet for cooking

Step 3: If you are choosing to make rice as a side dish, start this now.

Step 4: Break taco shells into 2 separate parts and place on a cookie sheet. At first I tried cutting these with scissors and although it works that way, it works just as well to break them with your hands. I placed my thumb in the crevice of the shell and slowly worked my way down the shell break it into two. If you break one or two, nobody will know! Toss it in a baggie to use as a scooper later on for your toppings!

Step 5: Start layering your toppings on your shell. I started with refried beans

Step 6: Then I added the ground beef and cheese. On some of the shells I omitted the beans for those who don't like them.

Step 7: Place in the oven for 7-10 minutes until the cheese is all melted and everything is warmed up!

Step 8: After they are warmed up, add your PILE of toppings and your rice to the side. No Fork needed! Simply pick up the taco shell as if it were a nacho chip and eat away!

Even my 2 1/2 year old daughter loved this idea and was able to eat with ease.

Notice it was a paper plate night for us tonight. Gotta have those nights every once in awhile to give us a nice break from kitchen clean up!

I would love to know how your family responded to this meal. Let me know if you tried it or are planning to in the future! ~

Cost of Meal for a family of 4: $8.00
Cost per person: $2.00

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas Week Meal Plan

6 more days until Christmas! I love Christmas time, all the lights, the parties, and all the great food. I can't believe it is almost over. This last week, you can guarantee that Christmas music will be playing around the clock and we will be sharing lots of yummy treats with family and friends.

We are blessed this Christmas because all of my siblings will be in town to celebrate together. With family coming into town starting on Monday, our small family dinners will soon turn into large family dinners! Thank goodness for my mom, she is an amazing cook and loves to cook for everyone.

Since we will most likely be eating several meals out of the house at random, unplanned times this week, instead of creating a day-to-day schedule of meals for the week, I have created a list. The list contains lunches, dinners and desserts that I have on hand to make for the nights when we are home. Maybe making a list will work for your family as well this week!

Here is what is coming up this week for Dinner:

  • Fresh Spaghetti 'ala Katie and Sarah
  • Open Faced Taco night
  • Cheesy Chicken, Rice and Broccoli
  • Tilapia with garden salad and asparagus
  • Pizza night


  • Red Velvet Cream Cheese Babycakes dipped in White Chocolate
  • My great-grandma's coffee cake recipe

Appetizers: Secret family cheese ball recipe