Monday, April 24, 2017

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

 What a beautiful day to enjoy some cookies and tea by my little waterfall.  Won't you join me?  My granddaughter Cissy and I made these.  I'm using my Jonson Brothers Friendly Village Springtime plate and a Lenox teacup that Debbie gave me,  from She Graces Her Home In God's Beauty.

Here is Cissy with all her Chocolate Crinkle Cookies ready to go into the oven.  Isn't she such a cute little baker?

I bought this sweet cherub from HomeGoods, but first talked myself out of it, went home and decided to go back the next day.  Hooray!!  It was still there and I  decided to purchase it.    It looks so pretty next to my waterfall, doesn't it?

Behind the cherub is my oak leaf hydrangea plant that my youngest son planted for me last year.  Isn't it a beauty?  Supposedly this plant does well in Texas.  

This is some happy news that I received recently!

yield: 40 cookies (although the cookbook said 24)
print recipe

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

Cissy rated this cookie a 5-Star!


  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 and 2/3 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 and 1/4 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Put the powdered sugar in a medium bowl and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until fluffy and pale, about three minutes. Turn off the mixer and scrape down the sides. Add 1 egg and beat until blended. Add the other egg and the vanilla and beat until blended. Turn off the mixer and add the flour mixture. Mix on low speed just until blended. Scrape down the bowl.
  4. Scoop up a rounded tablespoonfuls of dough and roll into a balls. Roll the balls of dough in the powdered sugar until completely covered. Place the balls on the prepared cookie sheets, spacing them 2" apart.
  5. Bake the cookies 1 sheet at a time until crackled and puffed, 10-12 minutes. Remove the cookie sheet from the oven and place on a wire rack. Let cool for 15 minutes, then use a metal spatula to move the cookies directly to the wire rack. Let cool completely.
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Monday, April 17, 2017

10th Teacup Exchange

These are my special gifts that I received from my new friend Lauren, who blogs at Wonderfully Made.  This was the 10th Teacup Exchange that the sweet hostess, Stephanie, from The Enchanting Rose organizes so tirelessly and joyously for us twice a year.  I sent my gifts to the lovely Lea from Cici's Corner.   I forgot to take a picture of the gifts that I sent, but you can check them out at Lea's blog here.   Although it's such fun to receive the package in the mail, it's just as much fun to send the package off!

I received this pretty handmade card from Lauren.  Isn't she talented?  Both Lauren and Lea are new friends that I've been fortunate to meet through Stephanie's teacup exchange.  I always love meeting new friends, don't you?

Isn't this vintage teacup so pretty?  I just love this lily of the valley design, from Royal Stuart. When I see this patch of flowers it reminds me of those that were growing along my patio, when I lived in Ohio.  I can almost smell their fragrant scent!

How did Lauren know that I love spicy tea?  Lauren said that this loose leaf tea is a best seller from the tea shop that she purchased it from.

I also received this pretty vintage, lace-trimmed hankie, pretty stickers, and....

....lavender from Lauren's garden, homemade shell-shaped lavender soap, a heart shaped tea infuser, and vintage earrings.  Lauren said that she decorates with vintage earrings.  Isn't that a fun idea?  Thank you, Lauren, from the bottom of my heart.  I LOVE all of my specially selected gifts that you shared with such generosity and thoughtfulness.  Every time I sip tea from my new teacup, I will think of you.


Thank you, dearest Stephanie, for your wonderful organizational skills and kindness in being our hostess. Please be sure and stop by to see all the loveliness at:

It's that time. . .

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Thank you for your visit!  xo

Monday, April 10, 2017

Bunny Cupcakes

 Please join me for a bunny cupcake out on my patio, won't you?  Mr. Rabbit, that I made years ago, is hosting our party today.  My son, Mike, painted some rocks to resemble Easter Eggs. 

 I'm using this pretty teacup that my Mom gave me, which is an unnamed Royal Albert one.

 Cissy made a bunch of bunny cupcakes after school one day to take home to her family.  Doesn't she looked pleased with her results?  Can you see my bunny garland that I crocheted,  that's hopping in the background?

 I had lunch with Ella at her school and I brought the makings for the cupcake for her to put together.  

 Ella's big sister, Avery, loves her sweets and she was happy to make a cupcake for dessert, too.  Yes, Nana's Cooking Camp will travel!

 This little cutie wanted nothing to do with the marshmallow ears, but loved the rest of the entire cupcake..."I like cake!"  Me, too, Harper!

I thought I'd brighten your day by showing my basket of Gerbera Daisies because they're so cheery!

yield: 24print recipe

Bunny Cupcakes

There's really not much of a recipe for this, but it's fun for kids to put together.


  • Prepared cupcakes, either from a mix or by scratch
  • Vanilla frosting, either canned or homemade buttercream
  • Regular sized marshmallows, for the bunny ears
  • Small pink jelly beans for the nose
  • Small candies for the eyes, such as Sixlets, M&M's, or even colored icing
  • Pink Sparkling Sugar, for the inside the bunny ears


  1. Bake cupcakes as directed on package, or make from scratch. Let cool.
  2. Frost cupcakes with the vanilla frosting.
  3. Cut marshmallows diagonally in half, for the bunny ears. Sprinkle some of the pink sugar on a plate, and dip the sticky part of the ears in the sugar.
  4. Place the ears on the bunny's head. Add the jelly bean for the nose and some small candies for the eyes. Enjoy your bunny cupcake!
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Monday, April 3, 2017

Cast Iron Cinnamon Buns

 Please join me for a special treat...homemade cinnamon buns that were baked in a cast iron skillet.  My bunny teapot is ready to poor some tea.  Can you pull up a chair and sit a spell?

 This darling cottage teacup is a favorite of my granddaughter, Cissy.  I know I've shared it before, but it goes so nicely with today's teatime. 

 Here are the rolls all ready for their one and only thirty minute rise time.

Here they are with their cream cheese frosting...oh yumminess!  These would make anyone happy.

My youngest son, daughter in law and Harper invited me to Dallas Blooms at the Dallas Arboretum, and oh what a beautiful day it was.  The Arboretum is wonderful all through the year, but I have to say that Springtime is my very favorite.  Eating brunch on the restaurant's patio is another unforgettable treat.

Later on in the day, I heard a knock on my door and it was a surprise visit from my daughter!  Her oldest child and my very first grandchild, came over to show me Connor's "new" car!!  I asked for Connor to take me for a spin around the neighborhood.  What a good driver he is, too.  I was so proud, and he was so happy!

yield: 8 bunsprint recipe

Cast Iron Cinnamon Buns

I was searching for a recipe for cinnamon buns made in a cast iron skillet and came across this fabulous recipe. I have made many cinnamon rolls in the past, but this recipe is the quickest and tastiest EVER! The combination of baking powder and instant yeast makes for a quick 30 minute, one-time rise. Maybe you'd like to try this for Easter. This is going to be my go-to recipe for Cinnamon Buns from now on!


Cinnamon Buns
  • 3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (divided use)
  • 6 tablespoons granulated sugar (divided use)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • salt (stated in directions)
  • 2 and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 and 1/4 cups warm whole milk (110 degrees)
  • 4 teaspoons instant or rapid-rise yeast
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt


For the Cinnamon Buns
  1. Combine brown sugar, 1 tablespoon melted butter, 1/4 granulated sugar, cinnamon, cloves, and salt in bowl; set aside.
  2. Whisk flour, baking powder, and 3/4 teaspoon salt together in large bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together milk, yeast, 2 tablespoons melted butter, and remaining 2 tablespoons granulated sugar until yeast dissolves. Stir yeast mixture into flour mixture with rubber spatula until dough comes together. (I did all this in my electric mixer.) Dough will be sticky.
  4. Transfer dough to lightly floured counter and knead to form a smooth, round ball, about 2 minutes. Roll dough into a 12 by 9-inch rectangle with long side facing you. Brush 2 tablespoons melted butter over the dough, leaving a 1/2" border at edges. Sprinkle sugar mixture over butter, leaving 3/4" border at top edge, and press lightly to adhere. Roll dough away from you into a firm cylinder, keeping roll taut by tucking it under itself as you go. Pinch seam and ends closed. If necessary, gently reshape log to be 12" in length and an even diameter.
  5. Grease a 10-inch cast iron skillet with 1 tablespoon melted butter. Using a serrated knife, cut cylinder into 8 pieces and arrange cut die down in prepared skillet. Cover buns loosely with plastic wrap and let rise 30 minutes.
  6. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Brush tops with remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter, transfer skillet to oven and bake until buns are well browned and filling is melted, 25-30 minutes, rotating skillet halfway through baking. Transfer skillet to wire rack and let buns cool for 10 minutes before adding the glaze.
For the Glaze
  1. Whisk all ingredients together in bowl until smooth. Being careful of hot skillet handle, spread glaze evenly over buns.
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Monday, March 27, 2017

Pistachio Bundt Cake

It's so pretty out today, and I've made us some mini cottage bundt cakes from my Cozy Village Nordic Ware pan.  I wanted to use my Royal Albert March trio that my friend Colleen gave me last year. The pretty vintage hankie was included in the package from my teacup partner.  I'll be sharing the teacup and the rest of my gifts soon, when Stephanie has her reveal party, sometime in April.  

 The teacup has anemones on it, but I think it blends nicely with the pretty geranium basket that I put together. 

 I love iron baskets, and this is another one that I fixed with some new coco fiber and pretty plants.

yield: One 10" Bundt Cake or about 13 mini bundt cakes
 print recipe

Pistachio Bundt Cake

My friend, Debbie,  was kind enough to share her favorite birthday cake recipe that her mom used to make for her. Don't we all just love memories of our favorite foods and how they make us connected to those that we love?


  • 1 box of yellow cake mix
  • 2 (3.4 ounce) packages of instant pistachio pudding mix
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 tablespoon butter, softened
  • 2-3 tablespoons milk


  1. In a large bowl of electric mixer, combine the cake mix, pudding mixes, water, eggs, and oil; Beat on low speed for 30 seconds. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes.
  2. Pour mixture into a grease and floured 10" bundt pan. I like to use a cooking spray, such as Baker's Joy, that has the flour and oil mixed because it gets into all the crevices.
  3. Bake at 350 degrees for 60-70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. If using the mini bundt pans, check between 22-27 minutes.
  4. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
  5. In a small bowl, combine the Glaze ingredients, adding enough milk to reach desired consistency. Drizzle over cake.
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Monday, March 20, 2017

Springtime Cookie Candies

 Oh what fun to have a Springtime tea on my granny square throw that I made.  I'm using my pretty painted teacups that my late Great Aunt Kitty gave me.  We are having the most delicious little treats!  Aren't the pretty, too?  You make these cookie candies from a mold that you use the melted chocolates in,  and then place a sandwich type cookie into the mold.  They are pure heaven!

 This little lady head vase is one that my dear daughter gave me awhile back.  I planted her head with some cheery primroses.

Cissy is busy "painting" into the mold before placing the cookie.  She used a lollipop stick for "painting".

Didn't her cookie candies turn out so beautiful?!  If you don't want to change colors, you can just use one color and they still look oh so pretty.


 Ella and Avery came for a visit, too, and they made some treats to take home.  I did end up buying some paint brushes that I will use for just chocolates.

Here's little two-year-old Harper, after spending the night at my house.  Soon this little one will be enjoying Nana's cooking camp! Right now she loves eating her "Nana Bread",  which I make from a starter that dates back to the Civil War. She begs her parents for the bread!

This is the mold that I bought for $1.99 (of course I'm so thrifty that I even used a coupon!).  


Thank you for your visit!  xo

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Monday, March 13, 2017

Shamrock Spritz with My Grandsons

 Today's tea was made possible because of culinary help from two of my three grandsons.  I love having a shamrock plant for St. Patrick's Day.  The milk glass shamrock candle holder was my Mom's and she gifted two of them to me. We are going to be sipping some Emerald Spice tea to go with our cookies.

 I'll share my dream Ireland vacation journal with you, that my late Beloved and I took back in 2009.

 This gorgeous platter was this past Christmas gift from my youngest son, daughter-in-law, and granddaughter.  The back of the plate has a personal inscription that they requested.  It is beautiful!

 This is my only Belleek teacup that I own.  I love the shell shape of the cup and around the saucer, and the harp handle.


 Look at these cute bakers, taking turns at the mixer!

 They were so good at taking turns at the cookie press and sprinkling the sugars.  It's very important to use COLD cookie sheets when using a cookie press.  Even sticking your cookie sheets in the freezer before using will help.

 After our baking, we went to lunch, and then to the National Videogame Museum.

 A dear blogging friend sent me this beautiful towel of Ireland.  It won't be used for drying dishes, because it's too pretty.  It will be used for a decoration on the handle of my oven.   Thank you ever so much, Barbara!  She also sent me some Emerald Spice tea and some shamrock sugar cubes (too cute!).

yield: 5 dozenprint recipe

Shamrock Spritz

Spritz are such fun cookies to make with kids. They love doing the press, sprinkling the sugars, and then as a reward, you have lots of cookies in no time.  I have been making this recipe for many, many years, and the cookies have a delicate flavor and texture with just a hint of cinnamon.


  • 2 and 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 3 ounces of cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • food coloring, optional
  • colored sugars for decoration


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine flour, salt, and cinnamon in a bowl.
  3. Beat butter and cream cheese in mixer bowl at medium-high speed until smooth.
  4. Gradually beat in sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg yolk, vanilla, and food coloring (if using).
  5. With mixer at low speed, gradually add flour mixture until just blended.
  6. Insert disk into cookie press. Pipe dough about 1 and 1/2" apart onto COLD, ungreased cookie sheets. Decorate with colored sugars.
  7. Bake 10-12 minutes. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool. Repeat process, always using COLD cookie sheets.
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