It is spring in Colorado, which means the weather is bipolar! Well, Saturday was cold, windy and
rainy/snowy, so it was a perfect day to stay cozy inside. I watched an episode of The Pioneer Woman,
where Ree made homemade bread and I decided to try out the recipe, to go along with homemade
chicken noodle soup. So, even if the weather is not very spring-y, I can make the best of it with the
yummiest comfort food!
Making bread can be tiresome and time consuming but it is always worth the work! I just love the feel of kneading the smooth dough, seeing it rise, smelling it bake and the taste of it right out of the oven.
(Personal Note: This original recipe is "White Sandwich Bread", however I made it into dinner rolls this time. It makes 2 loafs of bread or 24 dinner rolls.)
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, melted
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
5 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for flouring the board
Combine the yeast and 2 cups warm water in a mixing bowl and stir to dissolve.
Add the butter, sugar and salt. Use a wooden spoon to stir in one-third of the
flour until smooth. Add another third of the flour and stir, then turn it out
onto a floured board to knead. Knead it over 15 minutes, adding the rest of the
flour as you knead. Don't let it get dry too fast; it should stay sticky. Put
the dough in a buttered bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let it rise for 1
Knead the dough another 5 minutes, place it back in the bowl and let it rise
Butter 2 loaf pans. Shape the dough into 2 loaves and transfer them to the
prepared pans. Cover and let rise for 45 minutes.
(Personal Note: I made "clover rolls" in muffin tins, by putting 3 small balls of dough into each muffin and allowing them to raise for another 30-45 minutes.)
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Bake the loaves until golden brown on top and cooked through, 30 to 35 minutes.
I was so happy to see these bright orange ranunculus at the grocery store the other day. I bought them in a heartbeat! This is the first time I've bought ranunculus... they are such a pretty flower! Nothing says spring-time like fresh, bright flowers in the house!
It is always fun to get outside and shoot photos, especially when it's almost spring and little bits of life are starting to show up. The other day, my sister and I went for a walk downtown in search of early blooms. I have been wanting to shoot with my lensbaby lately, so this was a perfect time.
The weather was lovely and I saw lots of pretty things...
Using a standing or electric mixer, beat the cream cheese in a large bowl, with a couple of drops of peppermint extract and desired food coloring. Start adding powdered sugar, a heaping cup at a time, until the dough is no longer sticky (a playdough-like consistency). You may not use the whole bag of powdered sugar. Add more peppermint extract, if needed. Add more food coloring for a richer color.
If the dough is too sticky, add more powdered sugar.
(Note: I made two colors, so I divided the dough in half and colored separately.)
To make the mints… pinch off a marble-sized amount of the dough, roll it in a ball, coat with granulated sugar, press into a special rubber candy mold. (Candy molds can be purchased on Amazon or you can simply press the mints flat with a fork, cup, etc.) Allow the mints to dry a bit in open air, then store them in the freezer until ready to serve.
These mints freeze well and thaw out quickly, so you can make them for any special event ahead of time and pull them out of the freezer about an hour before serving.
These mints are sure to be the hit of your next party!
made these truffles for Valentine’s day this year... They are minty and very rich!
I love them!!
Fudge Mint Truffles
1 cup butter (softened)
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cup flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 cup Andes mint chips
1 bag of Wilton’s chocolate melts (or other melting
In a large bowl, mix together the butter and sugars until
fluffy. Mix in the milk and vanilla extract. In a small bowl, combine flour, cocoa
powder, salt, and baking soda, then mix into the wet ingredients, until well combined. Stir
in the Andes mint chips.
Chill the dough for about 1 hour. Then form 1″ balls and
place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. (A cookies scooper helps with
this step.) Put the dough balls in the freezer until they are nearly frozen, at
least a couple of hours. (You can store them in a freezer bag for later.)
Once the dough balls are nearly frozen, melt the Wilton’s
chocolate melts in a microwave-safe bowl, in 30 second increments, stirring
after each time, until the chocolate is smooth. (For other chocolate melts, follow
the instructions on the package.)
(Note: It is best to work in small batches, so that the
dough balls stay frozen.)
One at a time, put a dough ball in the melted chocolate,
coating it. Lift it from the chocolate using a fork, so that it is on a flat
surface, and tap the fork on the side of the bowl to remove excess chocolate. Then
using another fork or toothpick, slide the truffle on to a lined baking sheet
or plate. You will need to work fast as the chocolate will set quickly on the
Allow the chocolate to set and you are done. Enjoy these decadent, minty treats!