Simple Sugar Cookies to Keep Santa Coming Back and get Mommy in Bed Early

I will not pretend to be a baker. As most of you who have read some of my other blogs might remember, I am the anti-baker. But, like with anything in the kitchen, I continue to try, try, try, and eventually I am determined to find success! Around this time of year, I always think of my best friends mom, spending all day rolling and cutting and decorating Christmas cookies in her kitchen. These days, we go through tubs of homemade cookies that my sister-in-law hand makes as well. This year I attempted to make some myself. Here is the Basic Sugar Cookie recipe I used, with a few creative changes in flavor and color at the end. (And all without a KitchenAid may I add! Santa, are you listening?)

Christmas Cookies!

Christmas Cookies!

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A Tale of Two Stews: 2 Hearty Recipes for Chilly December Nights

I’m always looking for new and interesting ways to take the chill out of the supper air during those cool December evenings. Stews are a great way to get a hearty one-pot meal that will warm your bones and feed an army. I like to make large batches (I always cook as if we are the next 19 kids and counting!) and I freeze half for an easy week night meal later on. Here are two fantastically delicious recipes for Beef Stew and its vegetarian friendly Southwestern Barley Stew counterpart!

Classic Beef Stew

Classic Beef Stew

Southwestern Barley Stew

Southwestern Barley Stew

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Oooey, Gooey Cheddar Pumpkin Ale Dip for your Halloween Monster Bash!

This week, I’ve been working on creative ways to get rid of the last of my pumpkin ale. The end of October is here. Our little ghosts and goblins will ring for treats this Friday. November 1st will be upon us with the looming task of Thanksgiving and the switch from all things Octoberfest (my pumpkin beer!) to good wine pairings for turkey and stuffing. So here’s a unique and devilishly tasty way to mix your beer in the meal with my ghoulishly good Cheddar Pumpkin Ale Dip!

Beer and cheese, yes please!

Beer and cheese, yes please!

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Sunday Dinner “Leave-the-Beef-and-use-Pork” Wellington

I will warn you from the start…this recipe is not a quick weeknight meal nor is it a single pan dish however, I will tell you you won’t regret giving it a try. I came across this recipe years ago and loved it from the first time I attempted its classic flavors. It’s rich and buttery and brings hearty harvest flavors all wrapped in light and airy puff pastry. I just adore Alton Brown and so his recipe for Pork Wellington did not disappoint! Here’s my take on the plate.

Pork Wellington

Pork Wellington

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