Saturday, December 20, 2014

Cinnamon Stick Cookies and my Keurig 2.0!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #Keurig400 #CollectiveBias

These light and crunchy cookies have a light cinnamon flavor and a sweet glaze - absolutely perfect for dipping in coffee! A great Christmas cookie to give as a gift as well!
#Keurig400 #CollectiveBias






Ahem.

So Christmas came early for Mommy this year. I'd like you to meet my new friend. Mr. Keurig 2.0.





*swoon*

I'm in love, people! I mean, I think you all know how coffee obsessed this mama is. The children pretty much know they can't talk to me until I've had my first coffee of the morning. :)

Our Keurig has always been a bit sentimental to us in this house. It was actually the first Christmas present Paul bought for me as a married couple. We did not have a lot of extra money that year and I was SHOCKED that he was able to pull that surprise off. And of course, I've been Keurig obsessed ever since.

7 years and two adorable kiddos later, and countless family visits and gatherings, have caused me to fall in love with my Keurig even more! Paul loves strong coffee, I tend to like breakfast blends, the boys love the hot chocolate and apple cider. With various family and friends over visiting, it's really awesome to be able to offer so many different coffees, teas, and drinks to guests. I like to keep a good variety of K-cup packs just in case we have a surprise knock at the door.





I absolutely love that my new Keurig 2.0 has the ability to brew a 4 cup carafe of coffee as well! Recently my father in law stayed with us over Thanksgiving break and I can't tell you how nice it was to have everyone's preferred coffee flowing. With 400 beverage varieties from 60 brands, I'm sure we could all find our favorite. It actually features Keurig 2.0 Brewing Technology which reads each lid to brew a perfect cup every time. And for sure the carafe would have come in handy that weekend - I'm looking forward to offering it next time!

These Cinnamon Stick Cookies are the PERFECT coffee cookie. They're shaped similar to biscotti, but way easier and quicker to make. Plus, one batch makes about 60 cookies - you can't beat that! 




Cinnamon Stick Cookies

Yield: 60 cookies
Ingredients
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • milk
Cooking Directions
  1. In a stand mixer, combine butter, sugar, brown sugar, and eggs until creamy.
  2. Mix flour, baking soda, and cinnamon in a medium bowl until well combined. Gradually add dry ingredients to sugar mixture.
  3. Line a loaf pan with plastic wrap and press cookie dough into pan. Try to be as even as possible. Refrigerate 1 hour until firm.
  4. Remove cookie dough from loaf pan using plastic wrap to lift. Slice cookie dough in 1/2 inch slices. Then cut each slice into 1/2 inch strips (about 4 per slice). Lay strips on GREASED cookie sheets about 1/2 inch apart.
  5. Bake until lightly browned at 325 for 11-13 minutes. Cool on wire racks.
  6. While cookies are cooling, mix powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons milk. Keep thinning out with milk until icing easily slides off a spoon. Drizzle icing over cookies.

*Click here for more detailed pictures of this step*





As many of you know, my husband became a Pastor of a small church here in our area. We'll be gifting a Keurig to our church office. It will be great for everyone to enjoy their favorite hot drink while doing the amazing work of the Lord. I love that Keurig 2.0 along with a wide variety of K-cup packs are available at your local Walmart. 





Not only would a new Keurig be a show stopping gift for someone you love, but what about your favorite non-profit? I'm sure the volunteers at your church or favorite charity would absolutely LOVE a new Keurig in their office. If you could give a new Keurig to anyone, who would it be?


Don't miss another Mostly Homemade Mom recipe! Click here to have recipes delivered by email. Or, you can follow along via FacebookPinterestTwitterInstagram, or Google+ - I'd love to connect with you!

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This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #Keurig400 #CollectiveBias

Friday, December 19, 2014

Meatball Mozzarella Mini Pizzas

Refrigerated rolls make the perfect crust for these miniature pizzas! Marinara sauce, chopped meatballs, lots of mozzarella, and topped with fresh spinach and a garlic butter drizzle!





We are pretty much pizza addicts in this house. We have some sort of pizza, or variation of a pizza, at least once a week in this house. Crunchy crust, tangy tomato sauce, and lots and lots of cheese. Everyone gets fed. Everyone is filled. And most importantly, everyone is happy. 

I have to say though, just the plain sauce cheese and crust can get a little boring after a while. Don't get me wrong - I LOVE a good, classic cheese pizza. Really, who doesn't?

When we're eating out, I'm often inspired by the new creative pizzas I've been seeing at our favorite restaurants. Paul and I usually go for something a little different, unusual, or even a bit gourmet - while the boys opt for maybe one extra topping on their favorite classic pizza. 





When we're home, it's easy to switch up a regular pizza. I try to look for things hanging out in the fridge that need to get used up: taco meat, grilled chicken, different cheeses, and chopped veggies usually top the list for me. Anything to make dinner that night just a bit different. 

One of my favorite things to keep in the fridge for a quick pizza night are canned refrigerated jumbo biscuits. Separate them, flatten them out, and you have the perfect pizza crust. If you're feeling extra adventurous, you can spread out different sauces, toppings, and cheeses and have everyone customize their own! At 3 and 5, I think you know how my boys would deal with that much freedom... haha. 



Meatball Mozzarella Mini Pizzas

Recipe by Kelly Miller
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 13 minutes
Total time: 28 minutes

Ingredients
  • 16 oz can refrigerated jumbo rolls (8 rolls)
  • 2 cups marinara pizza sauce
  • 12 frozen meatballs
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup fresh spinach, sliced in strips
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
Cooking Directions
  1. Separate rolls and press each roll out into a 5 inch circle. Place each flattened roll on greased and lined cookie sheets. Spread marinara evenly on each pizza.
  2. Cook meatballs as directed on package and slice each into quarters. Divide chopped meatballs evenly among pizzas. Top with mozzarella.
  3. Bake at 350 for 13 minutes, or until crust is lightly browned.
  4. In a small bowl, combine melted butter, garlic powder, and oregano. Top each pizza with some spinach strips and a drizzle of garlic butter. Serve immediately.



Oh MAN these pizzas were SO incredible! The drizzle at the end gives it just an extra punch of flavor. There's nothing like an easy dinner that the whole family raves about to make you feel like a supermom! :)


Here are some more of my favorite easy dinners:


Homemade Taco Helper




Biscuit Topped Italian Casserole








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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Chocolate Almond Marbled Sugar Cookies

These buttery sugar cookies have a swirl of melted chocolate through the dough and topped with sparkly sugar for a magical touch - this is a wonderful Christmas cookie!





So this year I participated in the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap. It was SO much fun! Freshly made boxed cookies arriving at my house while Christmas music is playing and I'm decorating the house? Merry Christmas to me, I say!


The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2014


This year I made these amazingly easy Chocolate Almond Marbled Sugar Cookies. I'm actually not an overall huge fan of sugar cookies, mainly because if you bake them .17 seconds too long, they have that weird burnt taste to them, even though they're just slightly browned on the edges. You know what I mean, that weird aftertaste. Definitely not what you want in a cookie, or a dessert of any kind for that matter!

I love that the melted chocolate swirled throughout the dough and the extra almond extract give these cookies a little extra special touch. As for baking it for the correct time, you'll have to experiment with your own kitchen. As a rule of thumb, I usually set my timer for 2 minutes UNDER what the recipe says, and always ALWAYS use parchment paper for sugar cookies. 

Not the dollar store parchment paper. The grease soaks through and they turn almost black at the edges, causing you to change out the paper after every batch. Ask me how I know. :/



Chocolate Almond Marbled Sugar Cookies

Recipe by Kelly Miller
These buttery sugar cookies have a swirl of melted chocolate through the dough and topped with sparkly sugar for a magical touch - this is a wonderful Christmas cookie!
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes
Yield: 3 dozen

Ingredients
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 oz square semi sweet baking chocolate, melted
  • 3/4 cup sanding (or regular) sugar
Cooking Directions
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar. Add in extracts and egg.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cream of tartar.
  3. Gradually add dry mixture into wet mixture while mixer is on low. Continue mixing until dough is fully incorporated.
  4. Melt chocolate according to package directions. Drizzle over dough in bowl. Drag a knife through the dough to create a marble effect - do not stir.
  5. Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of dough onto parchment lined cookie sheets. Flatten slightly with the palm of your hand and sprinkle with sanding sugar.
  6. Bake at 400 degrees for 6 - 8 minutes, just before edges turn brown. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.




Oh, these are just SO amazing dipped in coffee! I feel like I type the phrase "dipped in coffee" really REALLY often on here. Hmmm... :)

If you're a food blogger, be sure and sign up for the cookie swap next year - it's SO much fun!

Here are some more of my favorite cookie recipes:


Smores Cookies




Eggnog Cookies




Don't miss another Mostly Homemade Mom recipe! Click here to have recipes delivered by email. Or, you can follow along via FacebookPinterestTwitterInstagram, or Google+ - I'd love to connect with you!

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