Wednesday, October 19, 2011

{A guest post by Sophie}

I am super excited to have Sophie here today! She's a real awesome girl who has a really awesome blog, which you can find here:

Hey everyone! I'm Sophie from {La Creativite De La Fille}! And I am SUPER-DUPER happy
that "Book Blogger" gave me the chance to post over here! I'm just going to let you know
ahead of time, this IS my very first guest post {and I am super excited!} so I
don't know if there's any "normal" way to do it... But oh well!(;

A little bit about me and the {many} things I enjoy...
First of all, I love blogging! It gives me the opportunity
to share my creativeness with anyone who has the desire to read about it! In my spare time, I love baking, gettin' crafty, reading, journaling, running, and taking pictures.
Random Things I Love:
Anything pink, sparkly, or fluffy,
Hello Kitty
Justin Bieber
Diet Mountain Dew
Southern accents
Down comforters
Messy buns
Comfy pants
and whatever these {} things are called!

A little bit about my "bloggy-blog" {that's what I call my blog...}
"La Creativite De La Fille" is French for "The Girl's Creativeness"...
I love French stuff and I'm creative {so I'm told!} and that's the name I came up with!
I started my blog in April because my mom had a blog, and I loved the thought of being able
to design my own website and share all my ideas and things.
I have taught myself pretty much everything that I know about all that
shmancy-pants HTML codes, blog templates, signatures, and stuff like that.
Seeing a blog transform with things like that, gets me very excited!(:
On my blog, I share all my yummy recipes, baking experiences, crafty ideas,
and photography. So please stop by- I would love to have you as a follower!

But before I leave, I thought I should probably share with you a recipe! These cookies
are some of my absolute favorite and my specialty. They actually won 4th place at our local County Fair this summer... Enjoy!

White Chocolate Chip and Cranberry Cookies
1/2 c. butter, softened
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1/2 c. white sugar
1 egg
1 tablespoon brandy {I used vanilla}
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
3/4 c. white chocolate chips
1 c. dried cranberries

1. Preheat oven to 375ºF. Grease cookie sheets

2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar until smooth. Beat in the egg and brandy {vanilla}. Combine the flour and baking soda; stir into the sugar mixture. Mix in the white chocolate chips and cranberries. Drop by heaping spoonfuls onto prepared cookie sheets.

3. Bake for 8-10 minutes in the preheated oven. For best results. take them out while they are still doughy. Allow cookies to cool for 1 minute on the cookie sheets before transferring them to wire racks to cool completely.

Click HERE for a printable version of the recipe!

Alrighty! Well I think that just about sums it up!
Thanks so much for having me Book Blogger and I hope you all
If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you!
Thanks a bunch!(:

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Easy Sopapilla Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars {a guest post by Nela}

Thanks so much for doing this, Nela! I can't wait to try this recipe! And, for anyone who reads this, Nela's blog is 

2 cans (8 Oz. Size) Crescent Roll Dough 
2 packages (8 Oz. Size) Cream Cheese, Softened 
1/2 cup + 2 TBSP of Sugar 
2 cups Pumpkin Puree 
2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract 
2 teaspoons Ground Cinnamon 
½ teaspoon Ginger 
½ teaspoon Nutmeg 
¼ teaspoon Allspice 
½ cups Butter, Melted 

½ cup Sugar 
1 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon 
Honey (optional, For Serving)
Toasted Pecans (optional)

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a glass 9×13 inch baking dish. Unroll one can of crescent roll dough (all in one piece) and...

lay it in the dish, pressing it out to cover the bottom and pinching any seams together. 

In a large mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese and sugar... 

until light and fluffy. 

Add pumpkin, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice, and beat to combine. 

Spread this mixture over the crescent roll dough in your pan. 

For the topping, in a small bowl, whisk together the sugar and cinnamon. 

Unroll the other can of crescent roll dough and lay it on top of the pumpkin cheesecake mixture. (I actually found it easier to lay it on some plastic wrap secured over a cutting board. This gave me a surface on which to pinch the seams closed and make it into one big rectangular sheet. I then used the plastic wrap to “flip” it carefully over onto the cheesecake mixture.) 

Pour melted butter over top of crescent roll dough 

and sprinkle the cinnamon and sugar topping evenly across the surface. 

Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown. 

Let bars cool completely before covering them and placing them in the refrigerator to chill for at least a couple of hours (I left mine overnight). Cut into squares, heat for just about 20 seconds to take off the chill, and serve with a drizzle of honey and a sprinkle of toasted pecans.

While the bars bake, you can also toast the pecans on another rack, just spread them out in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast for about 6 minutes or until fragrant, stirring about halfway through the cook time. Transfer nuts to a plate to cool.

Here's the Printable Recipe:
Easy Sopapilla Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

Hope you enjoy! :)

Monday, October 10, 2011

Pumpkin Cake with Pumpkin Cream Cheese Frosting

My family had this cake for Thanksgiving dinner last night. All I can say is YUM! The pumpkin in the cream cheese was a nice touch.

Highly recommend. :)

Ingredients for cake:

Butter for coating cake pans, at room temperature
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting the pan
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
3 large eggs, beaten
1 cup canola or vegetable oil
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups canned unsweetened pumpkin purée
1 cup lightly packed sweetened flaked coconut
3/4 cup canned crushed pineapple (do not drain)

For cream cheese frosting:

2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 tablespoons canned unsweetened pumpkin purée
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

To assemble:
Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350°F. Butter two 9-inch diameter cake pans with 1 1/2-inch sides. Line the bottom of each pan with a circle of parchment paper. Butter the parchment paper. Sprinkle the pans with flour, tap the pans to evenly distribute the flour, and then shake off the excess flour. Set aside.

To make the cake, in a large bowl, sift together the 2 cups flour, the granulated sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and cloves. In a medium bowl, combine the eggs, oil, and vanilla. In another medium bowl, combine the pumpkin purée, coconut, and crushed pineapple.

Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until just combined. Add the pumpkin mixture and stir just until combined. Divide the batter between the prepared pans, spreading it evenly. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cake comes out clean. Transfer to wire racks and let cool in the pans for 15 minutes. Run a table knife around the edge of the pans to loosen the cakes. Invert the cakes onto the racks and peel off the parchment paper. Let cool completely before frosting the cakes.

To make the frosting, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium speed for about 3 minutes until smooth. Add the butter and beat for about 2 minutes until combined. Add the pumpkin purée and beat until incorporated, about 1 minute. Add the confectioners’ sugar and vanilla and beat for about 3 minutes until fluffy.

Place 1 cake layer on a cake plate or platter. Using an offset spatula, spread half of the frosting over the top of the first cake layer. Spread the frosting right to the edge of the top without frosting the sides of the cake. Carefully place the second cake on top, lining up the edges. Spread the remaining frosting over the top of the cake without frosting the sides. Swirl the frosting to decorate the top. Refrigerate the cake to set the frosting. Remove from the refrigerator 30 to 40 minutes before serving.