Thursday, September 4, 2014

~ Fog & Divine Appointments

Posting these for Betsy :)
There's something so appealing
about a fog that makes a mystery out of ordinary places.
It's peaceful and gives permission to halt or at
least slow down from the headlong rush
that most of us engage in every day.
I'm convinced we miss many a
divine appointment
because of the rush
of our lives.

What was your Divine appointment today?
God will give you one or two or ten every day
if you ask Him for them.
I don't feel the need to
 share the specific one I had today,but I did ask
Him for one this morning and He was gracious and gave one.
Having conversations with Him is a highlight of my day.
I refuse to be rushed.
The possibility of missing something
He is trying to tell me is too great! 
And just for interest I added a Winter shot of the same place.
It's warm and muggy today and made me wish for cool/cold temperatures.
It's almost around the corner and I'm psyched about it!
How about you? :)

Have a blessed evening!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Peanut Butter Delight Cheesecake(s)

Peanut Butter Snickers
Peanut Butter Cup
If you love all things peanut butter these are for you!
Both of them super yummy!
This week was my second son's last day at the job he had and he wanted to treat everyone at the shop and asked if I would make cheesecakes for this. Interesting, because he doesn't even eat/enjoy cheesecakes. But I guess he knew everyone else did. I was impressed when I asked him if he's sure he doesn't want something that he enjoys as well. His reply was, "Mom, this isn't about me and what I like, it's about them." (Proud Mom moment for sure! :)
I asked if he has a flavor choice even though he won't eat it and he chose the Peanut Butter Snickers and the Plain w/Fresh Fruit (previous post) for two of them. (He did end up tasting the fruity one and said it wasn't too bad :) We may convert him yet! :)
The two recipes here are pretty much the same except the amount of crumbs and butter used and the sugars in the toppings. Original recipe from
Preheat oven to 300°. Place a small bowl of water on the bottom rack of the oven.
For the Snickers:
2½ cups chocolate cookie crumbs
(icing removed)
1 Tablespoons sugar
4-5 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
40 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
1¼ cups creamy peanut butter
1¼ cups brown sugar
6 eggs
½ cup heavy cream
1½ teaspoons vanilla
1½ Tablespoons all purpose flour
6-8 Peanut Butter Snickers Squared
Candy Bars, diced
12 oz. sour cream
½ cup brown sugar
For the Peanut Butter Cup
4 cups chocolate cookie crumbs
(icing removed)
2 Tablespoons sugar
6-8 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
40 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
1¼ cups creamy peanut butter
1¼ cups brown sugar
6 eggs
½ cup heavy cream
1½ teaspoons vanilla
1½ Tablespoons all purpose flour
12 Peanut Butter Cups, diced
12 oz. sour cream
½ cup sugar
Line the bottom of a 10" Spring Form pan with parchment paper. Lightly spray with non-stick spray.
Mix cookie crumbs, sugar, and butter. Press into the bottom of the pan for the Snickers and also press 1 inch up the sides for the Peanut Butter Cup. Bake for 10 minutes @300°.
Remove from the oven and set on a cookie sheet.
In a mixer bowl combine the cream cheese, peanut butter, and sugar. Beat until fluffy.
In a separate bowl combine eggs, cream, vanilla, and flour. Beat with a hand mixer until smooth.
Add to the cream cheese mixture in the mixer bowl and beat until combined. Do not over mix.
Add in the diced candy bars. Mix again just for a little.
Pour into prepared crust and bake for 1 hour (on the cookie sheet) or until sides look puffy and dry and the center jiggles a little when lightly shaken.
 Turn heat off and prop the door open with a wooden spoon handle for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile combine the topping ingredients and stir periodically till sugar is all dissolved and mixture is smooth.
Gently spoon topping over the cheesecake working in towards the middle. With and off set spatula gently smooth it out. All the way to the edge. Return to the oven for the remaining 30 minutes. Most of the time I will leave the door completely closed when I return it to the oven.
After 30 minutes remove from the oven and run a thin sharp knife along the edge. Allow to cool completely. Refrigerate, covered with a tea towel overnight before taking it out of the pan.
♥ Have a lovely weekend!♥

Monday, August 11, 2014

Plain Delicious Cheesecake

 - aka New York Style -
Imagine my surprise today when I went to send a link to someone for the recipe of this delightfulness and found that I had never posted it!
Yep, I was surprised!
But I'm here now, and it is just as good as it was that first time I made it many moons ago.
Besides the fact that it's wonderfully creamy and tastes fabulous with a variety of crust options (chocolate, shortbread, graham, etc.) it is super simple and always turns out perfectly without a lot of stress.
And for a topping?
Well, it goes well with just about anything there as well, but my all time favorite is just a plain fresh fruit concoction of whatever strikes my fancy at the time. Usually pineapple, strawberries, kiwi, blueberries, and this time I added fresh peaches. No need, in my opinion, to add a sauce of any kind to the fruit. Keep it simple, Nature does it well on it's own.
2½ cups graham cracker crumbs
1 Tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon
6-8 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Combine and press into the bottom of a 10 inch Spring form pan. (Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper and lightly spray the sides and bottom of the pan.) Bake @ 300° for 8-10 minutes. Remove from oven and set it on a cookie sheet.
48 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
1½ cups sugar
6 eggs
1 cup sour cream
3 Tablespoons flour
1½ Tablespoon Vanilla
Meanwhile. In a large mixer bowl combine the cream cheese and sugar and whip until fluffy. Scrape down sides as needed.
In a separate bowl combine the eggs, vanilla, sour cream, and flour. Beat until smooth.
Add to the fluffy cream cheese mixture and beat just until combine. Scrape sides and bottom of the bowl and beat again just a bit.
Pour over crust and bake for 1 hour.
 Sides should look puffed up and dry but the center will still be jiggly. Sometimes I bake it an additional 5-10 minutes depending what it looks like and what mood I'm in and what the weather is outside. Seriously those are all factors, you just never know for sure! :) Ha!
Turn the oven off and prop the door open with a wooden spoon handle and leave the cheesecake in there for another 60 minutes. This is where a miracle happens. The center of the cake at this point usually looks a little caved in but while it sits in there cooling the top will become flat and smooth. Perfect!
When it's been cooling in there for about 35 minutes spread the topping on it.
12 oz. sour cream
¼ cup sugar
2 teaspoons clear vanilla
Make sure you mix this long before the cake is done baking so the sugar dissolves and it is completely smooth.
Return the cake to the oven and close the door completely.
Leave it in there for about 15 minutes then take it out and run a thin knife around the edge and cool completely on the counter.
Refrigerate overnight before removing from the pan.
Blessings and Enjoy!

Friday, August 1, 2014

The Voice of Nature

"Love is not a reward for attaining good character or perfect behavior,
 but a weapon used in Spiritual warfare."
For God so loved the world that He gave (gave!)
His One and Only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not die but live eternally.
John 3:16

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Marinated Carrots

Do you ever get tired of the same old salads? This one is a little more unusual but just as delicious as the more common potato salad and others like it.
I was thinking about the time in the past when I was employed at a restaurant and about the food that the diners always raved about and this was one of the recipes they couldn't seem to get enough of. I never would have imagined that it could be good and remember being very surprised when I tasted it to find that I agreed with them!!
Very simple and a lot less time consuming than potato salad, woohoo! And I like that it's a little more out of the ordinary. :)
3 lbs. baby carrots
1 medium sized green pepper,
sliced very thin
1 medium sized onion,
sliced very thin
1 sm. can tomato soup
1 cup sugar
½ cup olive oil
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
½ - 1 teaspoon dry mustard
Steam carrots till they are crisp/tender. Place immediately into cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain.
Slice pepper and onion.
Mix dressing ingredients and pour over vegetables. Mix and refrigerate overnight to let the flavors blend.
♥ Blessings!♥