2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter
1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese
1/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup white sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 cup finely chopped walnuts
1/2 cup raisins
1 jar apricot jam


Cut cold butter or margarine and cream cheese into bits. In food processor pulse flour, salt, butter or margarine, cream cheese and sour cream until crumbly.

Shape crumbly mixture into four equal disks, wrap each disk and chill 2 hours or up to 2 days.

Combine sugar, cinnamon, chopped walnuts, and finely chopped raisins (may substitute miniature chocolate chips for raisins).

Roll each disk into a 9 inch round keeping other disks chilled until ready to roll them.

Use a pastry brush to layer apricot jam over the round. Sprinkle round with sugar/nut mixture. Press lightly into dough.

With a chef's knife or pizza cutter, cut each round into 12 wedges. Roll wedges from wide to narrow, you will end up with point on outside of cookie.

Place on ungreased baking sheets and chill rugelach 20 minutes before baking.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).

After rugelach are chilled, bake them in the center rack of your oven for 18 to 25 minutes until lightly golden. Cool on wire racks. Store in airtight containers.

Variations: You could substitute brown sugar for the white sugar. You could also sprinkle the already rolled rugelach with cinnamon-sugar before putting on the pan and baking.

This recipe is also linked to...

Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Nuts

Roasted Yellow Beet & Sweet Potato Soup


1 medium yellow onion
4 cloves garlic
2 Tbsp olive or canola oil
1 large sweet potato
2 large roasted yellow beets
1 large can diced tomatoes
1 bunch cilantro
1 tsp dried basil
1 Tbsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground curry powder
salt & pepper to taste
crumbled cheddar (optional)
tortilla chips or crackers (optional)


In a large soup pot warm the oil on low heat while you dice the onion. Mix the onion into the oil and let it slowly saute. I remove the skins from the garlic and chop them in the food processor. When the onions are translucent, add the garlic. Keep the heat low, so the garlic can cook, but not burn.

Add the diced tomatoes to the pot, and dice the sweet potato. Add these to the pot and raise the heat just enough to bring the tomatoes to a slow simmer. Add a little water to thin out. I added about two cups. Add spices and let cook.

While the soup is cooking, I chop the bunch of cilantro in the food processor, peel and dice the beets and cut up chunks of cheese to top the soup. Sweet potatoes don’t take long to cook, so check them after about five minutes. Toss the beets in the pot after the sweet potatoes are soft. Let warm for about a minute and then mix in the chopped cilantro. Serve immediately with cheese and chips.

This recipe is also linked to...

Gluten-Free Wednesdays
Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Yellow
Sunday Night = Soup Night
Delicious Dishes

Yellow Beets with Pecans


4-6 small-medium yellow beets, well-scrubbed and washed, greens cut off for another use
2 garlic cloves, unpeeled
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 tablespoons red wine or other robust vinegar
4 tablespoons chopped scallions, whites only
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves
Scant handful broken pecan meats, toasted in a skillet for approximately 10 minutes
Salt and Pepper


Cover beets and garlic cloves in water in a large saucepan. Boil until beets are tender, about 40 minutes. Remove vegetables from saucepan and set them aside to cool. When cool, squeeze garlic cloves out of their skins, then mash them in a bowl with the back of a spoon. Add olive oil and vinegar, mixing well.

Peel beets and slice into rounds about ¼ inch thick. Arrange beet slices on small plates, spooning garlic dressing over them. Divide and scatter the scallions, cilantro and walnuts over each plate, finishing lightly with salt and pepper.

This recipe is also linked to...

Delicious Dishes: Garden Delights
Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Yellow

Chocolate Mint Wraparounds


2 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2/3 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp peppermint extract
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp imitation chocolate sprinkles
Green gel food colouring
1 egg white, beaten


Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

In bowl over saucepan of hot (not boiling) water, melt bittersweet chocolate; let cool to room temperature.

In large bowl, beat butter with sugar until fluffy; beat in egg and peppermint. In separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt stir into butter mixture in 2 additions, using hands when stiff. Scrape half into separate bowl; stir in melted chocolate. Stir sprinkles into remaining dough and tint green (will be paler when baked).

Between waxed paper, roll out half of the chocolate dough to 12- x 4-inch (30 x 10 cm) rectangle; brush with egg white. Shape half of the green dough into 12-inch (30 cm) log. Place log lengthwise on centre of rectangle. Bring chocolate dough over log to meet; press edges together and roll log to reshape if necessary. Repeat with remaining dough. Wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour. (Make-ahead: Freeze in airtight container for up to 3 weeks.)

Cut roll into 1/4-inch (5 mm) thick slices. Arrange, 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart, on prepared pans; freeze until firm, about 15 minutes. Bake in top and bottom thirds of 350 degrees F oven, rotating and switching pans halfway through, until firm to the touch and bottom is light gold, about 12 minutes. Transfer to racks; let cool. (Make-ahead: Layer between waxed paper in airtight container and store for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 1 month.)

Melting Moments


3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup icing sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1/2 cup cornstarch

For Raspberry filling:
1/4 unsalted butter, softened
1/4 teaspoon vanilla essence
3/4 cup pure icing sugar, sifted
6 small frozen raspberries, thawed


In a mixing bowl, beat butter, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy. Sift flour and cornstarch over butter mixture. Stir with a wooden spoon until just combined and a soft dough forms. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

Shape into 1/2-inch balls. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Using a fork dipped in flour, lightly flatten each ball until 1/2-inch thick. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until light golden. Cool on tray for 10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Meanwhile, make raspberry filling: Using a whisk, beat butter in a bowl until light and creamy. Add vanilla. Whisk to combine. Add icing sugar. Whisk until well combined. Stir in raspberries.

Lay out half the cookies and spread with a small amount of filling. Sandwich together with an uniced cookie. Serve dusted with icing sugar.

Coconut Strawberry Cream Sandwich Cookies


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut, medium

Strawberry Filling
1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup confectioner's sugar
2 Tbsp strawberry jam
1/3 cup strawberry jam


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cream butter until smooth. Pour in the sugar and the vanilla extract and beat that in for another 30 seconds. Add eggs one at a time, and allow each one to mix in completely before adding in the next.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Then add it to the bowl with butter and sugar. Stir it in and fold in the shredded coconut

Scoop tablespoon-sized mounds on to a parchment lined baking sheet. Space them about 2 inches apart since they spread like they mean it.

Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven until the edges turn golden, about 10-12 minutes. Let cool.

In a small bowl, combine butter, confectioner's sugar and the 2 tablespoons of jam. Beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.

Spread 1 teaspoon strawberry cream on the undersides of half the cookies. Spread 1/2 teaspoon of strawberry jam on remaining cookies. Sandwich one of each cookie together (one with cream filling and one with jam). Cookies can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container up to 2 days.

Kolaches (a.k.a. Hungarian Bow Ties)


2 cups flour
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup shortening
1 cup sour cream
1 jar apricot preserves/jam
1 egg, beaten
confectioner's sugar for dusting


In the bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt. Cut in shortening to make crumbs. Add sour cream and continue to knead until a soft dough forms (similar to pie dough).

Heat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

One a floured surface, roll dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Using a sharp knife or pizza cutter, trim the rough edges of the dough so the sides are straight, and then cut into 2-inch squares.

Spoon 1/2 teaspoon apricot jam onto the center of each square. Fold one corner into the center, dab with the beaten egg, and then bring the opposite corner into the center and pinch firmly together to seal the corners. With a thin spatula, transfer the cookie to the prepared cookie sheet. Repeat the process with the remaining dough.

Bake one sheet at a time until golden and very lightly browned and puffed, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool completely. Dust with confectioner’s sugar.

NOTE: We usually make them with cherry pie filling (1 cherry onto center of each square) instead of apricot jam/preserves. And we usually drizzle a glaze (1/2 cup confectioner's sugar and 2-3 teaspoons milk stirred until smooth) over the cookies instead of dusting them with confectioner's sugar.

This recipe is also linked to...

Sweet Treats Thursday

Stained Glass Cookies


2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla
6 to 8 oz assorted fruit-flavored hard candies (life savers, jolly ranchers, etc.)


Whisk together flour and salt in a small bowl.

Beat together butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes in a standing mixer (preferably fitted with paddle attachment) or 6 minutes with a handheld, then beat in egg and vanilla. Add flour mixture and mix at low speed until just combined.

Form dough into 3 (5-inch) disks and chill, each disk wrapped in plastic wrap, until firm, at least 2 hours.

While dough chills, unwrap candies and separate by color in small heavy-duty sealable plastic bags. Seal bags, forcing out air, then coarsely crush candies by wrapping each bag in a kitchen towel and pounding bags with a rolling pin.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Roll out 1 piece of dough into a 9-inch round (1/8 inch thick) on a well-floured surface with floured rolling pin (keep remaining dough chilled). Cut out as many cookies as possible from dough with large cutter and transfer to a Silpat-lined baking sheet, arranging about 1 inch apart. Cut out centers from cookies with small cutter and add to scraps. Spoon about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed candy (depending on size of cutout) in center of each cookie. (If you want to use these cookies as tree ornaments, make a hole with a drinking straw in each for hanging.) Put cookies in the fridge for 10 minutes before baking if you find that the dough is really soft. This will help the cookie hold its shape better during baking.

Bake in middle of oven until edges are golden, 10 to 12 minutes, then cool cookies completely on baking sheet on a rack, about 10 minutes. Transfer with a metal spatula to a plate or an airtight container. Gather scraps and chill until firm enough to reroll, 10 to 15 minutes. Make more cookies with remaining dough and scraps (reroll once) in same manner on cooled baking sheet.

Pfeffernüsse (a.k.a. Pepper Nuts)


1/3 cup molasses
1/4 cup butter
2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
1 egg, beaten
coarse decorator’s sugar, if desired


Combine molasses and butter in a large saucepan. Over low heat, stir until the butter melts. Remove pan from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature.

Thoroughly combine flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, cardamon, allspice and pepper in a large mixing bowl.

Stir egg into cooled molasses mixture. Add dry ingredients stirring just until combined.

Cover the dough and refrigerate approximately 1 hour, or until dough is easy to handle.

Divide dough into twelve equal pieces. Roll each piece on a lightly floured surface into a rope 10-inches long. Roll each rope in coarse decorator’s sugar, if desired. Cut these ropes into 1/2-inch lengths. Scatter the pieces on ungreased cookie sheets leaving approximately 1 inch between each.

Bake at 350 degrees 10 – 12 minutes or until cookies are lightly browned on the bottom. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

This recipe is also linked to...

Crazy Sweet Tuesdays
Sweet Indulgences Sundays

Pear Clafoutis


4 large eggs
1/4 cup sugar (or agave nectar)
1/2 cup whipping cream (not whipped)
1/2 cup salted butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup blanched almond flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
4 large ripe pears, peeled, cored, and sliced


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch round pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, cream, butter and vanilla.

In a small bowl, stir together almond flour, cinnamon and salt.

Whisk dry ingredients into wet until smooth.

Arrange the pears in a circular shape on the bottom of the tart pan, then pour mixture over pears.

Bake for 45-55 minutes, until clafoutis is set in the center and top is golden. Cool and serve.

This recipe is also linked to...

Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Yellow
Sweet Indulgences Sunday
The Knit Wit's Tasty Tuesdays
Gluten-Free Wednesday
Sweet Treats Thursday
Allergy-Friendly Friday

Plum and Raspberry Clafoutis


4 Tbsp butter, melted, plus more for the pan
1 pound firm, ripe plums
1 cup raspberries
3 large eggs
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp sugar
1 1/3 cup milk


Position the rack in the top third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Liberally butter the bottom and sides of a 2-quart shallow baking dish.

Halve the plums, remove the pits, and place them cut side down over the bottom of the baking dish. If the plums are quite large, cut them into quarters. Scatter the raspberries over the plums.

In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs until smooth. Whisk the butter and flour into the eggs until completely smooth, and then add the vanilla. Whisk in the 1/2 cup sugar, then the milk.

Pour the custard mixture over the fruit and bake for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes, slide out the rack that the clafoutis is resting on, and sprinkle 2 Tbsp of sugar over the top.

Continue baking the clafoutis for about 30 more minutes, until the custard feels slightly firm in the center and the top is a nice golden brown.

This recipe is also linked to...

Seasonal Sunday
Food on Friday: Plums

Peach Melba


1 1/4 cups white sugar
6 cups water
Lemon zest, a few pieces
1 vanilla pod (split lengthwise)
4 peaches
vanilla ice cream
pistachios, for garnish (optional)
raspberries, for garnish (optional)


Put the sugar, lemon zest and vanilla pod into a pot with 6 cups of water and bring to the boil.

Reduce the heat to a simmer and add the peaches. Cover with a piece of baking paper and place a plate on top, this will act as a weight and stop the peaches from rising to the surface. Gently simmer for 5 to 10 minutes.

Using a slotted spoon, remove the peaches and gently peel off the skin by running them under cold water. Set aside.

Place about 1 cup of poaching liquid, some extra sugar and the peach skins into a saucepan and simmer for 15 minutes or until reduced by half.

To serve, place a peach and a scoop of ice cream. Drizzle with syrup and sprinkle with some raspberries and chopped pistachios.

This recipe is also linked on...

This Week's Cravings: Special Diets (GLUTEN-FREE, DAIRY-FREE, NUT FREE and MORE)
This Week's Cravings: Peaches
Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Yellow

Ginger, Peach and Chicken Stir-Fry


2 chicken breasts, boned, skinned
2 small peaches
6 spring onions
1-inch piece of ginger, grated
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup chicken stock
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp dried dill (or 1 tsp fresh)
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/2 cup sliced water chestnuts, drained
salt & pepper to tastecooked rice
1 package (6 oz. size) frozen pea pods, cooked


Spray a large skillet with nonstick spray. Preheat skillet over medium heat. Add chicken. Cook over medium heat for 8-10 minutes or till tender and no longer pink; turn to brown evenly. Remove from skillet; keep warm.

Meanwhile, drain peaches, reserving juice. Add water to juice to equal 1/2 cup. Stir in cornstarch, gingerroot, and salt. Add to skillet. Cook and stir till thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir 1 minute more. Gently stir in peaches and water chestnuts: heat through.

On a serving platter or individual plates arrange rice, pea pods, and chicken. Spoon sauce over chicken.

Frozen Pina Colada Pie


1 cup finely crushed pretzels
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 pkg. (8 oz.) Cream Cheese, softened
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon rum extract (optional)
1 can (8 oz.) crushed pineapple in juice
1/4 cup flaked coconut
2 cups whipped cream (or Cool Whip) , divided


Mix pretzel crumbs and butter. Press onto bottom of plastic wrap-lined 9-inch round pan. Freeze until ready to use.

Beat cream cheese, sugar, rum extract, pineapple, juice and coconut with mixer until well blended. Whisk in 1-1/2 cups whipped cream; spoon over crust.

Freeze 4 hours. Serve topped with remaining whipped cream and some toasted coconut for garnish.

This recipe is also linked on...

Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Mexican
Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Yellow

Mojito Freeze


1 cup finely crushed pretzels
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 pkg. (8 oz.) Cream Cheese, softened
2/3 cup sugar
Zest and juice from 1 large lime
2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh mint
2 cups whipped cream (or Cool Whip) , divided


Mix pretzel crumbs and butter. Press onto bottom of plastic wrap-lined 9-inch round pan. Freeze until ready to use.

Beat cream cheese, sugar, zest, juice and mint with mixer until well blended. Whisk in 1-1/2 cups whipped cream; spoon over crust.

Freeze 4 hours. Serve topped with remaining whipped cream.

This recipe is also linked on...

Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Mexican
Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Green

Frozen Peanut Butter Turtle Pie


1 tub (8 oz.) Cream Cheese Spread
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups whipped cream (or Cool Whip)
1/4 cup caramel ice cream topping
1 Oreo pie crust (6 oz.)
1/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans, toasted
2 squares (1 oz. each) Semi-Sweet Chocolate


Beat cream cheese spread, peanut butter and sugar in large bowl with mixer until well blended. Add whipped cream; mix well.

Spread caramel topping onto bottom of crust; cover with cream cheese mixture. Freeze 4 hours.

Top with nuts just before serving. Melt chocolate as directed on package; drizzle over pie.

Salted Caramel Cupcakes


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 stick of unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line muffin tins with papers. Combine flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.

Cream butter and brown sugar on medium-high speed until pale fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated. Add vanilla. Mix and scrape down sides of bowl as needed. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of buttermilk, and beating until combined after each.

Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling each about halfway full. Bake for about 25 minutes. When done, transfer tins to wire racks to cool 10 minutes; turn out cupcakes onto racks and let cool completely.

Salted Caramel Filling:

1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons salted butter cubed
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoons heavy cream, at room temperature

Melt the sugar over medium high heat in a large pot. Whisk the sugar as it melts and cook until it becomes a deep amber color. Add the butter and stir it in until melted. Pour in the heavy cream (mixture will foam) and whisk until you get a smooth sauce. You may have some lumps but keep stirring until they have melted. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.

Cut a small round piece out of the tops of each cooled cupcake and pour in 1 teaspoon of caramel. Replace the cake piece and set cupcakes aside.

Salted Caramel Buttercream Frosting:

1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons water
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 stick salted butter
1 stick unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

In a saucepan, stir together granulated sugar and water. 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.

Scrape down the side of the bowl and add the caramel. Beat on medium high speed until light and airy, and completely mixed (about 2 minutes). Mixture should be ready to use without refrigeration. If your caramel was too hot when added, it will cause your icing to be runny. If this happens refrigerate for 15-20 minutes.

Top caramel-filled cupcakes with frosting.

This recipe is also linked on...

Delicious Dishes
Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Cupcakes
Sweet Indulgences Sunday
Crazy Sweet Tuesday
Cast Party Wednesday
Sweet Treats Thursday
Sweet Tooth Friday
Sweets for a Saturday

Shrimp & Asparagus


1/2 pound fresh asparagus
1 (8 ounce) package egg noodles
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup butter
1-1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 pound medium shrimp - peeled and deveined
1/2 pound fresh mushrooms, thinly sliced
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste


In a small saucepan, boil or steam asparagus in enough water to cover until tender; chop and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to full boil, place the pasta in the pot and return to a rolling boil; cook until al dente. Drain well.

In a large saucepan, saute garlic in the olive oil over medium-low heat until the garlic is golden brown.

Place butter and lemon juice in the saucepan. Heat until the butter has melted. Place the shrimp in the saucepan and cook until the shrimp turns pink. Place the mushrooms and asparagus into the saucepan, cook until mushrooms are tender.

Toss the shrimp and vegetable mixture with the egg noodles and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.