Sugar Cookies (Shaped like teeth!!)

A few of the girls from our class had a brilliant idea and decided to have an “Estrogen” party, they kindly invited all the girls from our class over for a night of relaxing.  We’ve been swamped with exams lately and this was a great way to unwind/forget about school for a night.

Surprise, surprise… I couldn’t help myself but bring a baked good.  A good friend of mine (Jessica Martinez!) came over and we decided to make sugar cookies… in the shape of teeth!!! How fitting was this?  I got this tooth shaped cookie cutter months ago at a dental expo and I have been itching to use it.  I couldn’t help but gush and call every tooth shaped cookie “cute.”  Seriously, they turned out so so cute!  How can teeth be cute, you ask?  Just scroll down and judge for yourself.

While the teeth did in fact turn out adorable, they also turned out delicious! Both the sugar cookie recipe (from allrecipes.com) and the buttercream frosting recipe (from wilton) were awesome.

You should be warned of a couple of things… first off, the cookie recipe makes A LOT of cookies, nearly 5 dozen, depending on the size of your cookie cutter.  Also, the buttercream frosting is so delicious that you could spoon it out and eat it on its own. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Enjoy 🙂

Ingredients for cookie:

  • 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup powdered sugar (added this after reading some reviews)
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
Instructions for cookie:
  1. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour (or overnight).
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Roll out dough on surface covered with powdered sugar.  Dough should be 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes with any cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
  3. Bake 5 to 7 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.
Ingredients for buttercream frosting:
  • 1 cup solid vegetable shortening*
  • 1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon clear butter flavoring
  • 2 tablespoons water (or milk)
  • 1 tablespoon merengue powder*
  • 4 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar (approximately 1 lb.
  •  *  Get white shortening, not yellow! So you can dye the icing without it already having a tint of yellow.  Also, the merengue powder is optional. From my understanding, the purpose of adding this powder is to stabilize the buttercream, so when you add dye it prevents darker dye colors from bleeding in to lighter colors. But I’ve made buttercream frostings without adding merengue powder and it turns out perfect.
Instructions:
  1. With an electric mixer, soften shortening.  Add vanilla, butter flavoring, water (or milk), and merengue powder.  Mix well.
  2. Start adding powdered sugar, one cup at a time until well blended.  I like my buttercream frosting to be really sweet, so taste as you go and add more or less depending on your sweet tooth 🙂
  3. Frost your cookies!
Here’s a glimpse of the Estrogen party 🙂
We know how to eat 🙂

Jessica and I

“Pigs in a Blanket”

Mina was invited over to a buddy’s house for a fantasy football draft party.  This is a conversation we had several hours before the party:

Mina: They’re having wings tonight and they asked me to bring a side dish.

Me: Ok, what do you want to take?

Mina: I don’t know…what do you think about some ranch dressing?

Me: (dying laughing) Um. Well, I don’t think that constitutes as a side dish…

So, I took charge of the side dish situation and made a newer version of pigs in a blanket. They were a huge hit and now that football season is in full swing, I know that we’ll be having many football watching parties and these will definitely be made again!

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of reduced fat crescent rolls
  • 1 package chicken italian sausage
  • Slices of your favorite cheese, I used muenster cheese because that’s what I had
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Garlic salt
Instructions:
1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.  Boil sausage in water for 5 minutes. Slice sausages in four equal pieces (I cut them in half horizontally and then again in 1/2 vertically)
3. Unroll dough in to triangles.   Place 1/2 a slice of cheese per triangle along with a slice of the sausage.  Wrap triangular dough around dog and cheese.  Place on ungreased cookie sheet.
4.  Sprinkle each with a pinch of  parmesan cheese and garlic salt.
5.  Bake on 350 for about 13 minutes, or until golden brown.
6.  Dig in and enjoy!

Logans Roadhouse

Yesterday Mina and I drove to Dayton to see visit some friends: Mike, Sarah, and their daughter Sophia.  It was a last minute, unplanned trip (the best kind of trips) and we loved every second of it. They’re practically family.  We always have such a great time even though we basically do a lot of nothing.

 

Sophia and I


For dinner we went to Logans Roadhouse, and well I need to discuss the situation at Logan’s.  Have you ever been?  People just throw their peanut shells ON THE FLOOR. Please look at exhibit A:

I think I was having an anxiety attack.  Every time I saw someone throw their peanut shells on the floor I wanted to go pick them up.  Ask anyone who knows me…I’m a clean freak.  In fact  I might be clinically diagnosed as slightly, borderline OCD.  Mina was having a great time. He had a huge grin on his face every time he threw shells on the floor.  Every time he dropped the shells, it brought him great joy and me great stress.  If they had handed me a broom, I would’ve swept the floors for them…

Has anyone else ever shared this same experience?  Stress.ful.

Stir Fry Overload

Yesterday for dinner my friend Mary and I made some chicken and vegetable stir fry.  I think we made enough to feed a small country.  It’s an Egyptian thing…Egyptian mothers only know how to cook for armys of people and I think I have inherited this gene.  I rarely can get the portions right.  I guess the theory is, I’d rather everyone be stuffed and have tons of left overs then for someone to walk away from the table a little hungry.  Crazy, I know.

Anyways, I think I went a little (by a little, I really mean a lot) overboard on the fresh veggies I bought to put in it: broccoli, red bell pepper, green bell pepper, mushrooms, carrots, onions, zucchini, eggplant, sugar snap peans…I couldn’t help myself but pick up every vegetable I love. This combination worked out perfectly! It couldn’t have been better.

I’m not going to make an ingredient list for this recipe, because everyone likes different vegetables.  So I’ll just walk you through the steps of how I put this all together!

1 Get some rice cooking. Rice typically takes awhile to cook so I started that first.

2. Chop 1 pound of  chicken breast into cubes.  Season with 1/2 tsp pepper, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp ginger, 1/4 tsp ground red pepper (for spice)

3. Brown 1/2 cup of chopped onions and cubed chicken in pan.

4. While chicken is browning, chop vegetables in to cubes. Add about  tsp of olive oil to lightly coat vegetables, along with 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1/2 tsp of ginger, and 1/2 tsp red pepper (same spices that were on the chicken!).

5.  Put vegetables in separate pot on medium-high heat. Allow vegetables to cook through, mixing regularly.

Mary while mixing the vegetables, "I feel like a real housewife of Columbus."

6. Add 1/2 cup of soy sauce.  (I had a lot of veggies, so this might be too much soy sauce for you!) I used a light, low sodium soy sauce from the grocery store.  It was perfect.  Some soy sauces are too salty.  So taste yours before adding a ton to your veggies.

7.  Once veggies are cooked down and tender.  Add chicken.

8.  Serve on rice.  Dig in and enjoy!

After dinner a group of us went and saw a comedy show at the funny bone.  Mina got to see the third love of his life (#1. Me, #2. Diesel) Tommy Johngin.  He says I’m jealous of his love that he has for Tommy…but that’s not true.  I know I’ll always be number one.  Overall it was a successful dinner followed by a successful evening of friends and laughter. What more could I ask for?

Tommy's the one in plaid!

 

Chicken Enchiladas

Tonight was Mexican night in the Doss household! We had chicken enchiladas and beef nachos! Yum! I even made Mina wear a sombrero throughout all of dinner and only speak in Spanish…just kidding.  Although that would’ve been pretty entertaining.

Tonights recipe isn’t all that healthy for you, but the enchiladas were full of flavor and everyone seemed to really enjoy them. Hope you enjoy them too!

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound chopped chicken
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can reduced fat cream of chicken Soup
  • 1 (8 ounce) container light sour cream
  • 1/2 cup corn
  • 2 cup of your favorite salsa
  • 1 chopped green onion
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes (canned or fresh)
  • 1 tsp ground red pepper (*optional, add for spice)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp back pepper
  • 1 cup shredded cheese
  • 1/2 cup of refried beans (or black beans)
  • 10 low carb tortillas
Instructions:
  1. Heat oil in pan.  Brown onions and chicken.
  2. In a medium sized bowl mix together cream of chicken, sour cream, corn, salsa, green onion, diced tomatoes, red pepper, pepper, salt, shredded cheeses, and cooked chicken.
  3. Warm up tortillas in microwave.  If using black beans add to mixture in bowl.  If using refried beans, line tortillas refried beans.
  4. Fill tortillas with chicken mixture from bowl.  Place filled tortilla, seal down in a large  baking dish.  This recipe makes a lot! It made about 10 full sized tortillas.
  5. Top tortillas with extra filling and extra shredded cheese.
  6. Cover with foil and bake in oven on 350 for 40 minutes.
  7. Dig in and enjoy!
We had some friends join us for dinner so I also made a plate of nachos on the side!

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Yesterday was a friend’s birthday (Happy birthday Jess!) and the day before she had hinted at wanting some red velvet cupcakes… ask and you shall receive!!

I love using recipes from the Cake Mix Doctor because they’re so quick, easy, and always delicious.  I typically like to make all my cakes from scratch, but every once in while when I’m in a hurry I’ll use one of her recipes.  She always starts by using pre-made cake mix (like the kind you buy in a box from the grocery store).  But instead of following the directions on the back of the box, you follow her directions.  I didn’t really make any changes to her red velvet cupcake recipe, but I did use a different cream cheese frosting recipe that I’ve used in the past.  I promise these are easy to make, even if you’re not a baker! It’s a pretty straight forward recipe.

Ingredients:

  • Paper liners for cupcake pans (2 1/2 –inch size)
  • 1 package (18.25 ounces) plain German chocolate cake mix
  • 1 package (3.4 ounces) vanilla instant pudding mix
  • 1 cup reduced fat sour cream
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 bottle (1 ounce) red food coloring
  • 3 large eggs
Directions:
  1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350° F. Line cupcake cups with paper liners. Set the pans aside.
  2. Place the cake mix, pudding mix, sour cream, water, oil, food coloring, and eggs in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer (or in kitchen aid mixer) on low speed for 30 seconds. Stop the machine and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat 2 minutes more, scraping down the sides again if needed. The batter should look thick and well combined.
  3. Spoon or scoop 1/3 cup batter into each lined cupcake cup, filling it three quarters of the way full. (You should get between 22 and 24 cupcakes…I got 18) Place the pan in the oven.
  4. Bake the cupcakes until they spring back when lightly pressed with your finger, 18 to 20 minutes. Remove the pans from the oven and place them on wire racks to cool for 5 minutes. Take cupcakes out of pan and allow to completely cool before icing.  If you’re in a hurry you can always put them in the fridge to cool down quicker.
Now it’s time to make your frosting!
Ingredients:
  • 2 (8 ounces each) packages of reduced fat cream cheese*
  • 1/2 cup of light margarine*
  • 3 cups of confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
* You can choose to use full-fat ingredients if you like! If you’re looking for a stiffer icing, I would use full-fat cream cheese and butter instead. You’re icing will be a little runnier if you stick to reduced fat ingredients…but you will be saving yourself many calories!!
Instructions:
  1. In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy. Mix in the vanilla, then gradually stir in the confectioners’ sugar. Store in the refrigerator to thicken, if too runny.
  2. Ice cupcakes.
  3. Dig in and enjoy!
This frosting doesn’t turn out overwhelmingly sweet. It’s basically in your control…just add more or less confectioner’s sugar depending on how you like your icing!
If you’re looking for an overall healthier red velvet cupcake recipe, then check out my friend Sarah’s recipe! She says they turned out amazing 🙂