Monday, April 30, 2012

Getting Healthy in 2012 - Color Me Rad 5K

Twenty twelve is all about getting healthy for me. This means eating better & exercising more (or at all), so when I was approached to about the Color Me Rad 5K I knew I had to do it! If you haven't heard anything about the growing popularity of color runs lately, you should really check them out. The Color Me Rad 5K will be in OKC on July 14, 2012. Head on over to & see what it's all about! As an added little incentive to sign up, I am giving all of my followers a 20% discount on the registration fee if you register by the June 1st deadline. Just enter the code CINVANILLA20 when you sign up.

I hope everyone will join me as I complete my first 5K. It's going to be a good time!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

TWD - Irish Soda Bread

Oh how I love easy recipes! I'm sure I've said that a million times on this blog, but it's so true. This week's Tuesdays With Dorie recipe is Irish Soda Bread hosted by Carla & Cathleen. Now this was my kind of bread...just a few simple ingredients that were easy to put together, & voila...a gorgeous loaf of bread emerged from the oven. In an effort to remove all yummy, carb-loaded temptation from my house, I gifted the bread to a friend. She assured me that it was absolutely delicious & didn't last through the weekend before being gobbled up by her family. Success!

Sorry there's no pic this seems that I forgot to take one before I sent the little loaf off to it's new home. Major bummer.

Head over to the TWD page for everyone's links, & be sure to visit the host's sites for the recipe!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Tuesdays With Dorie - White Loaves

**Note: It would have been great if I had remembered to hit post on this when I typed it up yesterday. Please forgive my TWD post being on a Wednesday this week. Sheesh!**

I am so excited to be a part of Tuesdays With Dorie again! We all started with a new book this time around, Baking With Julia. Our first recipe was White Loaves. I have never even attempted making bread, so I must admit this was a pretty daunting task for me. The recipe seemed pretty straight forward, so I was looking forward to trying my hand at bread baking for the first time. Unfortunately this recipe didn't work so well for me...I thought my mixer was going to burn up while trying to mix the ingredients. The resulting mixture was really lumpy, & I was afraid it wouldn't rise. I put it in a bowl to proof anyway, & much to my surprise it actually rose. The baked loaf was pretty dense, but it made yummy toast. I will definitely try this recipe again, I may just have to resort to hand kneading the dough since my mixer doesn't like to cooperate.

Head over to slush or Someone's in the Kitchen for the recipe. Also check out the TWD page for everyone's links!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Cinnamon Vanilla Bundt

It seems that lately my favorite dessert to make myself is a good ol' bundt cake. I've tried more bundt recipes over the past few years than I have any other kind of sweet treat. They're so easy to put together & so tasty too. My birthday was yesterday & since I didn't get a birthday cake, I decided to make one of my own. I found a recipe for a vanilla bundt but decided to add cinnamon & a vanilla glaze to jazz it up a little bit. I always glaze my bundts while they're still warm...I love the way it soaks into the cake. You can wait for cake to cool completely before glazing it, or if you'd like, glaze the cake once while it's warm & again after it's cooled to get the best of both worlds.

Cinnamon Vanilla Bundt
(adapted from Natalie's Killer Cuisine)

1 stick Butter, room temperature
1 cup Sugar
1 Egg, room temperature
2 Egg Whites, room temperature
3/4 cup Milk
2 tsp Vanilla Extract
2 cups AP Flour
2 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg/egg whites and mix until fully combined.
2. In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking power, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
3. Add the milk and vanilla extract to the egg moisture, mix until fully combined.
4. Add your dry ingredients and mix until just fully combined.
5. Pour in a prepared bundt pan and bake 40 minutes.
6. Allow to cool in pan for 15 minutes before turning out onto a plate. Drizzle with Vanilla Glaze.

Vanilla Glaze

1 cup Powdered Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
2 Tbsp Water

Whisk ingredients together & drizzle over cake.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Butterfinger Cookies

For Father's Day, I gave my dad a dessert of his choosing every month for a year. I've been a little busy lately so tonight I finally got around to making his dessert for August. He asked for cookies, & at first I was going to make chocolate chip or peanut butter but that's just too boring. I decided to go for something different & found this recipe on a blog I follow. We love Butterfinger candy bars, & when I saw that the candy turns into a toffee consistency I knew these were the ones I had to make. I snuck a taste before I delivered them, & they're so tasty!

Butterfinger Cookies

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups plus 2 Tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 cups Butterfinger pieces

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and mix until thoroughly incorporated. In another bowl, combine the flour, salt (if using), and baking soda. Add to the butter/egg mixture and mix until just combined. Stir in the Butterfinger pieces. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for at least 30 min.

Line baking sheets with parchment paper and drop rounded tablespoons of dough. Bake cookies for about 12 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to wire rack to cool.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Pizza

I think it's high time I dust off this little blog & start posting again. I finally had a chance to cook dinner tonight, so I pulled out an old favorite. My friend gave me this recipe a few years ago, but I've made a few tweaks to it & really love the results.

Buffalo Chicken Pizza

1 - 10" Pizza Crust (Homemade or Store-Bought)
2 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
2 tablespoons olive oil
Ranch Dressing
Buffalo Sauce
Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Prepare pizza dough according to recipe or package directions. Place on a large cookie sheet or pizza pan.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cut chicken breasts into large cuts & saute in skillet until golden brown & cooked through. Transfer chicken to a bowl & shred (I use two forks). Pour desired amount of buffalo sauce & stir until chicken is covered.

Spread ranch dressing over pizza dough. Then evenly distribute the shredded chicken on the dough. Top with mozzarella cheese. Bake for 10-12 minutes until the cheese is golden & bubbly.

Homemade Pizza Dough
(From Pioneer Woman Cooks )

Makes 2 Crusts

1 teaspoon Active Dry Or Instant Yeast
4 cups All-purpose Flour
1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Sprinkle yeast over 1 1/2 cups warm (not lukewarm) water.
In a mixer, combine flour and salt. With the mixer running on low speed (with paddle attachment), drizzle in olive oil until combined with flour. Next, pour in yeast/water mixture and mix until just combined.
Coat a separate mixing bowl with a light drizzle of olive oil, and form the dough into a ball. Toss to coat dough in olive oil, then cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and store in the fridge until you need it. It's best to make the dough at least 24 hours in advance, and 3 or 4 days is even better.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Apple Cranberry Cake

It's no secret that my favorite thing about fall is the variety of apples that are available. Anything I can make with apples is a winner to me, so recently when I needed to make a dessert to take to a friend's house I knew apples had to be involved. This bundt cake is everything you want in a great fall recipe. The apples make the cake extremely moist, & the cranberries offer that perfect tart bite. The original recipe didn't specify the types of apples, but Honeycrisp are my favorite so that's what I used. I also made the addition of cinnamon because everything's better with a little cinnamon. I highly recommend that you try this very soon; I've made it twice & have gotten rave reviews both times.

Apple Cranberry Cake
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
2 eggs, beaten
2 cups apples, peeled and diced
1 cup canola oil
1 cup fresh cranberries, chopped
1 cup pecans, chopped
2 cups granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 Tbsp corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour a bundt pan. Mix together flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Add in the rest of the ingredients and stir until blended; batter will be stiff. Spread into the prepared pan and bake for 1 hour 25 minutes. Mix all topping ingredients together until well blended. Pour over and down sides of hot cake while it's still in the pan. Let cool for 30 minutes before removing from pan.