German Pancakes

German PancakesThe most requested recipe of all time!

— Mini German Pancakes made in muffin tins.

So easy, the crater forms on its own! (Share to your wall for easy reference later. This makes for a fabulous breakfast when you have company or a special treat for your family)!

Note: Depending on the size of your muffin tin, recipe yields 12-18 muffins. And NO WHINING about the number of eggs! It’s less than one egg per pancake. :-)

1 cup milk

6 eggs

1 cup (all-purpose) flour

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. vanilla

1/4 cup butter, melted


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Blend first five ingredients in a blender. Be sure to smooth out any flour lumps.

-Blend in butter a little at a time.

-Grease muffin tins well and fill slightly less than half-full.

-Bake for 15 minutes, or until puffy and golden on top. The crater will form on its own.

-Add your favorite toppings. And a dusting of powdered sugar.


Grandma’s Banana Pudding

Growing up across the street from my grandparents was an experience you don’t soon forget. Grandma would make some fancy dessert and call to let us know she’d made it, I remember her saying, “Granddad and I won’t eat all of this, you might as well come join us.” Continue reading »

Easy Pumpkin Pleasure

A little sugar – now and then, (OCCASIONALLY) never killed a cat, claimed responsibility for diabetes or created instant gray hair.  At least, not that I recall.  But…a lot of gray hair fills my mirror these days… Memory, gray hair…who knows for sure. But I digress.

A friend recently made this quick, yummy cookie recipe for me.  For some odd reason, of which I have no logical explanation, the cookies had a ‘disappearing’ quality – the plate emptied quickly, and I’m sure it had nothing to do with me!

I then fed these cookie lovelies to my visiting friends last week.  I substituted a fudge mix and added ½ C each, of raisins and applesauce.  The same phenomenon occurred – the plate cleared off in no time.

So, be oh-so-careful when you make these – I am thinking there may be a peculiar chemical reaction that causes the mass to change to energy – or some such complex physics formula of which my gray hair has erased.

Pumpkin Cake Cookies

1 box spice cake mix (extra moist)

1 small can 100% pumpkin


Mix together these 2 ingredients well (I use my pastry cutter tool – it works for everything),  and spoon onto a greased cookie sheet to your cookie size.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 12 to 18 minutes – depending on your altitude, oven, size of cookies and growling stomach.

Cool; eat.  But eat quickly…chemistry with this particular recipe…is magical.

I’m thinking I might use the spice mix, grate up a big Granny Smith, add 1/2 C applesauce and raisins, for a grand-kids treat.  The added fruit might just ease my conscience a little; I so hate to send the little tikes home to Mom – in a total state of ‘fizz’…

Let us know your take on this easy, quick snack – just perfect for those unexpected quests on a busy Saturday afternoon.

We’d enjoy hearing if your life…really improves through chemistry.


NOTES: There is a new tin foil available that incorporates a ‘non-stick’ side; quick and clean.


Pumpkin Apple Spice Muffin Cake

Pumpkin Apple Spice Muffins



Pumpkin Apple Spice Bundt CakeThe first pie crust I made 40 odd years ago – though perfect in almost every way – could have been registered as a lethal weapon; it was hard as lead!  My Mother raised 5 of us as a single parent, working two jobs most of our growing years; learning to cook came in individual, sometimes traumatic lessons. Understandably over the years, I’ve steered clear of pie crust and quick bread/muffin recipes.


My recent cooking bravery led me to this mouthwatering, delicate and light muffin recipe.  This is my 4th creation with this recipe, each try being simply delicious. First muffins, then a combo of muffins and a small loaf, the 3rd a big loaf and this one, of course, a Bundt version. Raisins have been a standard addition with other additions such as bananas and applesauce giving the finished product subtle but yummy differences.


Pumpkin Apple Muffin - CakeIt’s versatile and made of common refrigerator and pantry staples, a quick Saturday morning yummy for DH and the kids.  Let us know how this turns out in your kitchen – especially the topping, as I’ve not yet used that part of the recipe.


Yield: 2 dozen muffins


1 2/3 C flour (I use 1 C. whole wheat and 2/3 white)

1 C sugar (I use 2/3 C brown sugar)

1 TBLSP pumpkin Pie Spice (I use 2)

1 TSP baking soda

¼ TSP salt (if you’re watching your salt, skip this)

¼ TSP baking powder

1 C canned pumpkin

½ C butter or margarine

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 Granny Smith Apple, peeled and finely grated/chopped


1 TSP Pumpkin Pie Spice

3 TBLSPS sugar


Combine first 6 ingredients in a large bowl; make a well in center of mixture.

Combine pumpkin, butter, and eggs in another bowl and add to dry ingredients, stirring just until moistened.

Fold in chopped apple and spoon into greased muffin pans, filling two-thirds full.  Combine 3 tablespoons sugar and 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice; sprinkle evenly over muffins.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove from pans immediately and cool on wire racks.


Original author’s tip: if you don’t have pumpkin pie spice, use the following; ½ tsp cinnamon, ¼ tsp ginger, 1/8 tsp nutmeg, 1/8 tsp cloves.

Please let us know how your version of this recipe turned out.  We post all appropriate comments; learning new recipes is mega fun!



NOTE: Don’t tell Danielle, but I recently made this same cake adding 2 TBSP cocoa to the mixture and about 2 cups of walnuts and 1 cup of chocolate chips. I didn’t have the apple, so I put in applesauce instead. The cake was literally AMAZING. I don’t remember if she had given me the site, or if it was something I found, but seriously… that was Chocolate to Die For! I don’t know who it was that first mixed chocolate, apples and pumpkin, but they must have been seriously in love with decadence!!!!

Mocha Salted Caramel Cake Balls

Mocha cake balls with salted caramel buttercream
Yield: 38

Cake Ingredients
1-1/3 all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½  tsp salt
½ cup heavy cream
½ cup espresso (1 shot, I make mine a double)
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup dark brown sugar
1 egg, at room temperature

Salted Caramel Buttercream Frosting Ingredients
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp water
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 stick salted butter, at room temperature
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 tsp sea or kosher salt
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Chocolate Dip Ingredients
4 oz semisweet chocolate
2 tbsp heavy cream
4 tbsp powdered sugar
4-5 tbsp water, warm

Pull espresso shots and set aside to cool. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prep a cake 9×13 cake pan. Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Beat butter and both sugars together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add egg and beat until combined. In a measuring cup, combine the cream, espresso and vanilla. Slowly add the flour mixture, alternating with coffee mixture, ending with flour mixture.

Pour batter into cake pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes in the pan, then pop it out onto a platter and cool for an additional 30—if the cake crumbles when you pop it out of the pan, don’t worry. You’re going to be crumbling it anyway, and more surface space for cooling is a good thing. Finally, to prep cake for the cake balls, either refrigerate it for 2-3 hours, or put it in the freezer for 20 minutes.

To make caramel sauce for buttercream, stir together granulated sugar and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Cook without stirring until mixture turns a deep amber color. Remove from heat and slowly add in cream and vanilla, stirring until very smooth. Let caramel cool for about 20 minutes, until it is just barely warm and still pourable.

In a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat butter and salt together until lightened and fluffy. Reduce speed to low and add powdered sugar. Mix until thoroughly combined.

Add caramel and beat on medium high speed until light and airy, and completely mixed (about 2 minutes).

Place wax paper on a cookie sheet with edges. Trim any hard edges off the cake and crumble it into a bowl. Gradually add the frosting until you get a consistency you’re happy with (begin with 1/2 cup).

Mix together with your hands to ensure that the frosting is evenly distributed.

Scoop out batter with whatever you want to make a uniform shape: melon baller (small), tablespoon, cookie scoop.

Place in refrigerator for 2-3 hours or in freezer for about 20 min. Once firm, it’s time to dip. It is best to only take a few balls out at a time. If you take them all out when you start dipping some will start to soften.

I actually had chocolate dip leftover from when I made the chocolate dipped chocolate cupcakes with orange cream cheese frosting, so that’s what I used. SugarDerby recommends Almond Bark, but I’m a firm believer in use what you have. You’re going for melted chocolate. [Note: halfway through my dipping, I began to run low on chocolate. I didn't have any more semisweet chocolate left, but I had 3 oz. of unsweetened chocolate. So I added that to the bowl, set it over a saucepan of water, heated it up and added cream and confectioners sugar until the flavor was right. I also added a little water to thin the chocolate—better for dipping.]

Dip each cake ball into the chocolate, using a fork, and coat it. Lift with fork and tap excess off on side of bowl. “Flip” the ball onto the wax paper then smooth the fork edges with a little more coating.

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

It isn’t fall yet if you haven’t come home to chocolate chip pumpkin bread baking in the oven. In fact, we often make this as a dessert or after dinner treat. It’s also popular with the ladies who come for Friday morning Tea and Books. In fact, there’s a nice batch sitting in the pantry waiting to be mixed up for tomorrow’s event, now that all the autumn decorating is done!

Pumpkin & Chocolate Chip Mini-Loaves for giftsJan’s Spicy Nut Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup oatmeal
1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1 tablespoon ground nutmeg
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 (15 ounce) can 100% pure pumpkin
1 cup vegetable oil (we prefer olive oil)
2/3 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts

Directions -
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Spray three 9×5 inch clay loaf pans with cooking spray and set aside.
3. Whisk together first 7 ingredients and set aside.
4. In mixer bowl, cream sugars, pumpkin, oil, water, vanilla and eggs. Blend until smooth, scraping down sides often.
5. Carefully blend in flour mixture.
6. Add in chocolate chips and nuts.
7. Divide batter between three loaf pans.
8. Bake for 60 minutes, until toothpick comes out clean.
9. Allow pans to rest on wire rack for 15 minutes.
10. Go around edge of pan with knife and remove loaves from pan.
11. Cool completely before slicing.

This bread is spectacular wrapped and chilled or frozen as gifts for the holidays. You’ll LOVE these loaves! Don’t forget to share!

For gift giving, I like to sprinkle the top of loaves liberally with cinnamon and sugar before baking. I often bake these into 9 small loaf pans instead of three regular size loaf pans for giving away.

If you’re into the trendy – add bacon to everything. This is the perfect recipe to add a cup of fried, broken and drained bacon bits to. Just make sure there’s no oil left on your bacon and add it to the batter before you bake these loaves. There’s an intense flavor change when you add bacon to these substantial loaves.

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Quick Cherry Compote

Two cans cherry pie filling — in a square bake dish.

Cherry Compote - Delicious Dessert1 cup quick cook oat meal
1/4 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter

Stir all together (I use a pastry blender) until crumbly, sprinkle over cherries and bake at 350 until hot and bubbly – golden brown – about 25 minutes.

This is a quick and easy company ready dessert – serve with real whipped cream for added delight.

If you’re looking for pretty dishes to serve your family dinners, I recommend a visit to Country Treasures in Lamar, Colorado. Carol Owens, the owner of Country Treasures, is a local girl, home grown and dedicated to keeping family heirlooms a part of our community.

Sponsored by:
Country Treasures - Lamar, Colorado

Decadent Chocolate Cake – Sinfully Delicious

Chocolate cake anyone?

Tonight as we sit here proclaiming our diets successful we found we were craving chocolate cake, not the store purchased mounds of whipped frosting, but rather instead, the delicious, light fluffy kind of chocolate cakes that come from your own kitchen with homemade frosting and all the delicious bits of chocolate you get to lick from the bowl.

So, it was time for a tester.

Somebody had to be the victim, throw the diet to the curb and take the first bite. Don’t look at me, I didn’t even lick the spoon.

Chocolate Cake —


6 egg whites whipped until solid peaks form

2 egg yokes

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup cocoa

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup half and half

2 cups finely grated zucchini

3 cups flour – double sifted before measuring

Batter will be extra thick, for higher altitudes, you may need to increase the amount of baking powder and half and half by another teaspoon or so.

Blend slowly adding each ingredient one at a time until the flour, then add the the flour one cut at a time mixing thoroughly.

Pour into a 9 X 13 inch pan or two 9 inch round pans and bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes.

Toothpick should come out clean.

Chocolate Butter Cream Frosting

3 cups sifted powdered sugar

1/4 cup butter softened

1/4 cup cocoa

1/4 cup half and half (add one spoon at a time until desired consistency – may not take a whole 1/4 cup)

Whip until soft peeks form and you can spread easily onto a nice cool cake.

I know… everyone wants a taste test… but you’ll have to wait until tomorrow. Because this one HAS to sit in the fridge overnight to be the BEST cake in the world.


Note: For eXtra chocolaty frosting, you can use melted dark chocolate in place of cocoa. Just pour melted chocolate into the mixer while it’s mixing and let it spin. 

Decadent Desserts – CHOCOLATE

Decadent Chocolate BrowniesSome days you just really NEED your chocolate fix. Today is one of those days and the only chocolate thing in the house is a brownie mix… Gotta love it when the mom’s are dieting. (I’m one of those.)

While it’s baking (yup, I mixed it up before breakfast), I’m sitting here sipping the most delectable chocolate hazelnut coffee I could think of.

Two whole spoonfuls of hershey’s chocolate in my cup with whipped cream (steamed) and a cup of rich dark hazelnut coffee – the taste of smooth going down.

To a packaged mix of brownies (prepared as usual), I added 1 8 ounce bag of chocolate chips, 1/3 cup EXTRA strong Hazelnut Coffee, 1 1/2 cups walnuts (always except this time – I was out of walnuts). AND just to make sure it’s chocolaty enough 1 tablespoon extra cocoa.

I LOVE these brownies! Extra Sinful!!!

Tell me about your emergency diet fixes! Just post in the comments below.