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Molasses Sugar Cookies like your grandmom used to make.

By | Recipes

Nothing says Mother’s Day like a batch of homemade cookies. And nothing says Grandma like rolling those cookies in sugar before you bake ‘em.

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup (packed) dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups flour, spooned in
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1-1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • ½ tsp cloves
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • Sugar for rolling

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Melt butter in a medium-sized pot. When just melted, remove from heat and stir in the white and brown sugar. Stir in the molasses then the egg, mixing well.
  3. Stir in flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and salt just until combined.
  4. Place rolling sugar in a small bowl.
  5. Scoop dough by the tablespoon and roll into balls. Roll in sugar and set on prepared sheet, about 2” apart.
  6. Bake 10-12 minutes. Once set, remove to wire racks and let cool completely.
  7. Makes 20-22 cookies

Superfood Smothered in Love – Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

By | Recipes

Raise the bar this year by giving your bestie the most delicious superfood they’ve ever tasted. That’s love in action.

Ingredients:
20 large strawberries with leaves. Rinsed and patted dry.
1 cup dark chocolate (preferably Fair Trade so you can spread the love), cut into small pieces
1 tablespoon coconut oil

Directions:

  1. Add ½ cup water to bottom of the double boiler. Bring water to a simmer
  2. Add dark chocolate pieces and coconut oil to top boiler
  3. Stir chocolate mixture until smooth
  4. Remove chocolate from heat and set aside
  5. Line large cookie sheet with parchment paper
  6. Pick up strawberries by the leaves and dip the bottom half into the chocolate mixture
  7. Lift and allow the excess chocolate to drip off
  8. Set strawberries on parchment paper
  9. Strawberries are ready to eat in 30 minutes
  10. Try not to eat too many
  11. Put into a heart-shaped box
  12. Give to your honey… and show them that you love them so much that you care about their health too!

Soft Pretzels with a Cheese Sauce

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The Praying Pretzels

Many people believe that pretzels have a history in prayer. It’s often noted that pretzels were invented in 610 A.D. by an Italian Monk. The monk created these baked treats as a way to reward young children for learning their prayers. Some say that he folded the strips of bread dough to resemble the crossed arms of praying children. They were originally called pretiolas, which means “little rewards”. Meanwhile in Germany, many believe that the three holes within a pretzel represent the Trinity: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.

Ingredients:
1 cup milk
1 package active dry yeast
3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, and a 1/8 of a cup for dusting
10 tablespoons of unsalted butter, and a little extra for greasing the tray
1 teaspoon fine salt
1/3 cup baking soda
2 tablespoons coarse salt
For the Sauce:
2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
1 cup of milk
1 tablespoon of herbed cream cheese
5 oz extra sharp shredded cheddar cheese
Kosher salt to taste

Directions:
1. Warm the milk in a saucepan to about 110 degrees (roughly the temperature of a hot shower – hot, but not scalding – nobody wants to be burned!).
2. Pour warmed milk into a medium bowl and sprinkle in the yeast.
3. The yeast will take about 2 minutes to soften, once softened, stir in brown sugar and 1 cup of flour.
4. Soften 2 tablespoons of butter and stir into the bowl.
5. Add the rest of the flour – about 1 ¼ cups, and the 2 tablespoons of the fine salt to make a sticky dough (sticky enough that if kids are helping you’re probably warning them not to touch anything else right now).
6. Lightly flour your kneading surface then place the dough onto the surface and knead until smooth –but still slightly sticky. Don’t forget to use the flour as needed. This step should take about 5 minutes.
7. Roll the dough into a ball (doesn’t need to be perfectly round – so all you perfectionists should just relax).
8. Lightly grease a bowl and place the ball into the bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
9. Let the dough proof by placing the bowl in a warm spot. The dough should double in size –which will take about an hour (kick back, relax – read something fun and if anyone asks, tell them you’re baking to perfection).
10. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
11. Grease a large baking sheet with your extra butter.
12. Take your bowl, take off the plastic wrap and punch your dough to deflate it (how often are you told to punch something?).
13. Once deflated, turn out your dough onto a lightly floured surface… if your dough seems tight, cover it back up and let it rest until it relaxes (we all need a break – sometimes even dough!).
14. Divide the dough into 6 pieces.
15. Using your hands, roll and stretch each piece into 30” ropes –you can hold the ends and slap the middle of the rope on the counter as you stretch it.
16. Once your rope is ready, form it into a pretzel shape.
17. Dissolve baking soda in 3 cups of warm water in a shallow baking dish.
18. Gently dip each pretzel in the soda solution then arrange on the prepared baking sheet and sprinkle with the coarse salt.
19. Bake at 450 degrees until golden – approximately 10-12 minutes.
20. Enjoy your Pretzels

For the Sauce
1. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter.
2. Slowly whisk in the flour.
3. Whisk constantly and let cook for about half a minute.
4. Slowly pour in the milk and continue whisking until there are no lumps of flour.
5. Simmer the milk for about three minutes as the sauce thickens.
6. Add the cream cheese, stirring until mixed and then remove the pan from the stove.
7. Add the cheddar cheese and stir until melted.
8. Add salt to taste.
9. Serve warm

Swiftly Created Whipped Shortbread

By | Recipes
Swiftly Created Whipped Shortbread

Shortbread’s always a winner with the crowd, and with this recipe –you’ll have your new favourite crowd-pleasing go-to sweet-treat.

Ingredients:
1 lb. of room temperature butter
3 cups of flour
½ cup of cornstarch
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup of icing sugar
pinch of Salt

Directions:
1. Whip all ingredients really well –beat it until it looks like whipped cream.
2. Drop by teaspoonful onto a baking sheet or to add a bit of design, roll into a ball and place on a baking sheet and press down lightly with a fork.
3. Decorate with sprinkles or chopped cherries, as you desire.
4. Bake at 350° for 12 minutes.
5. Save some for yourself before serving to others, because otherwise you won’t have any left over.

Teddy Bear Cookies

By | Recipes
Teddy bear cookies

Learn how to make adorable bear-shaped cookies with their arms wrapped tightly around a candy. These cute cookies are super easy to make and taste even better than they look!

Ingredients:
1 cup white sugar
1 cup butter
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs, well beaten
2 ½ cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
Candy

Directions:
1. Beat sugar, butter and vanilla until mixture is creamy… about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs, one at a time. Beat thoroughly.
2. In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt. Beat the dry ingredients into the creamed mixture.
3. Roll out cookie dough to ¼” onto a lightly floured board. For best results, don’t roll cookie dough too thin. Use a teddy bear cookie cutter. Place cookies on parchment lined cookie sheets.
4. Wrap teddy bears’ arms around the heart-shaped candy.
5. Bake at 350ºF for 10 minutes or until the underside of cookies turn golden brown.

Homemade Healthy Gummy Bears

By | Recipes

Gummy Bears

These little bears are healthy and yummy.

They’re made from real fruit and vegetables, chock full of vitamins, minerals and essential nutrients. No need to worry about chemicals, fructose, corn syrup or fake dyes. You can use your imagination and sneak in any nutrients you want your kids to gobble up. The colour of the juice you choose to use will determine the colour of the gummy bears.

Ingredients:
1 cup healthy fruit and/or vegetable juice
1/3 cup gelatin powder
2 tbsps lemon juice
1/2 cup honey or agave

Directions:

  1. Pour juice into a small saucepan.
  2. Sprinkle the gelatin over the top. Let it sit for a few minutes until the gelatin is absorbed into the liquid. When all the gelatin is absorbed, mix well.
  3. Cook on medium heat until it has an even consistency. About two minutes. Then remove it from the heat.
  4. Add lemon juice and honey and
    mix well.
  5. Use a dropper to put the liquid into the gummy bear molds.
  6. Refrigerate for one hour.
  7. Consume!
Note: Your homemade gummy bears will stay fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for about one week.

Crack a Quiche Tarts

By | Recipes

Wow! I can’t believe my child is eating his school lunches

If you’re like most parents, you feel absolutely frustrated by mid-September when you fully realize that your child won’t eat the lunches you so eagerly and lovingly put together.

You want your child to grow healthy and strong…able to focus on the lessons…and be disease resistant.

All your child has to do is eat their apple, carrot sticks, chicken sandwich, yogurt and drink their orange juice.

But, what if your child doesn’t want your lunches?

Here are some tips to get your child to eat:

  • Include your child in the lunch preparation –tell them they’re a little master chef.
  • Tap into the power of peer pressure by making the lunch look really appetizing and fun. If your child’s friends want it, then your child will probably try it – tell them they’re a leader.
  • Add well-known delicious flavours such as bacon and butter to the vegetables. A little fat won’t hurt…and if it helps to improve the consumption rate…Yay!
  • Arrange food in patterns, use creative dividers to keep food separate and include something special – tell them you’re a surprise artist!

Here’s a simple, healthy recipe that’s fun to make with your kids

Crack a Quiche Tarts

1 tbsp butter
2 strips of bacon
½ cup finely chopped broccoli*
½ cup finely chopped mushrooms*
¼ tsp dry mustard
a pinch of salt and pepper
4 eggs
1 ½ cups evaporated milk
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
12 mini quiches

  1. Prebake mini quiches pie shells in muffin tins. Bake in preheated 450F oven for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven. Set aside.
  2. Fry bacon in frying pan until crisp. Remove bacon from pan and set aside.
  3. Add butter to frying pan. Cook at medium heat. Once butter is melted, add vegetables and fry for a few minutes until soft.
  4. Pour vegetables into prebaked mini quiches. Add cooked, chopped bacon.
  5. Whisk eggs and evaporated milk in medium bowl. Pour mixture over filling in quiches.
  6. Sprinkle shredded cheese on top.
  7. Bake in preheated 350F oven until a knife inserted near the centre comes out clean, 35-40 minutes. Let stand to cool off for 10 minutes.

Put in storage container and send off to school with your child.

*You may substitute any vegetables your child loves…or sneak in a few they don’t love!