Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Peppermint Inspired Tables

I'm on a peppermint kick, I know. I can't help myself. I'm so excited about Christmas. This weekend as I was taking out my Christmas decorations, I found myself thinking that I had less than I remembered, which is fine, but I have found myself scouring the internet to find easy to make, cheap to buy decorations that don't look like either of those things. I keep telling myself that the tree isn't up yet, and that will make the difference, but I am keeping some of these ideas on the back-burner. Until then, here are some of the lovely red and white tables (and a kitchen just for kicks) that's I'll be keeping my eye on.


Monday, November 29, 2010

Peppermint Chocolate Chip Biscotti

This Saturday, we are having a women's gift exchange at church. The rules are that you can buy, bake or make a gift. Each person brings six of the same gifts. I didn't have time to make something crafty that looks smart at the same time, and I've spent enough money this month, so I decided to make cookie plates. This is my first batch since these can easily be made ahead of time. I probably shouldn't have made them this early though because I fear that my husband is going to eat them all!

These cookies are so dainty and absolutely perfect. Scott said he wouldn't change a thing (which I take as a high compliment because he can usually find at least something to tweak.) These are the perfect biscotti to make if you have never made them before... Plus you can get out some of the holiday stress by beating the peppermints to smithereens on your counter. I hope you can try to make them, or just come to church on Saturday, and you can be the lucky recipient of one of my cookie plates.


½ cup sugar

½ cup butter, melted

½ teaspoon peppermint extract

3 eggs

3 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup miniature chocolate chips

½ cup crushed peppermint candy


Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease a baking sheet. In a large bowl, beat sugar, butter, peppermint extract and eggs until well blended. Stir in remaining ingredients. Divide dough in ½. Shape each half into two - two inch logs on the baking sheet. Bake 30-35 minutes or until golden; cool for 15 minutes. Cut rectangles crosswise into ½ inch slices. Place cut sides down, on baking sheet. Bake 15 minutes or until light and crisp.

Picture Source

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Split Pea Soup

Wait! Before you close this post because of your ideas of other split peas soup, you have to give this one a chance. I promise it's not a muddy green color! Instead, it's fresh with frozen peas, carrots and bacon. It is absolutely not a split pea soup.
Here is the recipe:
4 strips thick-sliced bacon
1 cup diced onion
2 carrots, sliced
1 very small head of cabbage
1/2 t. caraway seeds
2 1/2 cups water
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 cup dried split peas, rinsed and picked through
1 cup frozen peas
2 t. Worcestershire sauce
Salt and Pepper to taste

Saute bacon in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Once the bacon is crisp, remove it and drain on paper towel.
Add carrot, onion, cabbage and saute until onion is soft, about 3 minutes.
Stir in water, broth, and split peas. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until peas begin to soften and break down, about 40 minutes. Stir in frozen peas and Worcestershire sauce. Return to a boil.
Top each serving with bacon, and delight in its easy deliciousness. :)

You could easily make this a Vegetarian meal by omitting the bacon and switching chicken broth out for vegetable broth.

Adapted from Cuisine at Home's Split Pea Supper.
Issue No. 73, February 2009

I'll work on a picture next time... I have a pretty bad camera and awful lighting! Not a great combo for making food look good.