one of my oldest and dearest friends, jessica, is one talented gal.
don’t we look like sisters? or cousins, at least?
she recently graduated from oklahoma state university (go pokes!) with a degree in advertising, and her deepest passion in that area is photography. i have the pleasure of getting to live with jess and some other lovely ladies in the affectionately termed bennett house this summer before i jet off to quebec. last month, jessica snapped some photos of me for my prayer cards – she did a phenomenal job!
this month, we’ve been trying out some new recipes with one another. the second best part (besides chowing down, of course) is taking pictures of our creations before we dig in. my little digital camera just wouldn’t do these dishes justice, and i have jessica to thank for capturing them with her canon rebel xs. here are a few of her photographs, along with links to their recipes!
behold, i give you baked lemon pasta. this is one of my favorite pioneer woman recipes yet! lemon, parsley, and pasta – it doesn’t get much better.
we also decided to get swanky and eat our scrumptious dinner on the patio. and what outdoor summer supper would be complete without iced tea?
and these, my friends, are pineapple cupcakes. i can’t lie: we did use a boxed mix for the little cakes themselves, but the glaze on top is an entirely homemade concoction from yours truly. what was intended to be a creamier icing evolved into this sweet and fruity glaze, thanks to a minor error on my part. who knew that messing up would turn out so delightfully? our cupcakes were a big hit at last night’s get-together with some girlfriends, and the leftovers have been picked off at our office.
according to family legend, my papa used to make homemade caramel similar to this recipe and eat it straight from the can. :O my mouth is watering just thinking about it! besides papa, my brother-in-law is the only other person i know who’s embraced this secret to heaven in a can. he introduced me to making a pie from homemade caramel, and the rest is dessert history.
i uploaded this recipe to the pioneer woman‘s tasty kitchen community, and wanted to also share it with y’all! if you’re also a member of tasty kitchen, add me as a friend and let’s swap recipes. :)
homemade caramel pie
- two cans sweetened condensed milk (14 oz. each)
- one graham cracker pie crust
- one container whipped topping (8 oz.)
submerge the two unopened cans of sweetened condensed milk in a stockpot full of water, several inches above the cans’ tops. place this pot on top of the stove and boil for four hours. from time to time, it may be necessary to carefully add more water to the pot to keep the cans submerged.
after four hours, use tongs to remove the cans and let them cool. once they have cooled to a safe temperature, open the cans. pour the caramel into the graham cracker pie crust. place the pie into the fridge for three to four hours.
when you are ready to serve it, spread whipped topping on top of the pie, slice, and enjoy!
Filed under family, recipes
my goodness – is it honestly already december? despite my great love for this school, it was a smidge difficult to drag myself back to campus after such a splendid break. this thanksgiving brought me…
- some much needed time spent with my precious family. it feels like years since i have seen my father, though in all actuality it’s only been the few months since this semester began. i love that man yet always want to roll my eyes at him at the same time. it was good to hug his neck, though, and a rare compliment even leaked out from him about my cooking – now that is a moment to remember, folks! [here’s a free tidbit for you – while discussing his technological illiteracy, dad told us that he still refuses to use a gradebook for his classes on the computer, and instead compells his school’s computer teacher to do it for him. naturally, we wondered what sort of compensation he gives her for this kind service to an old man. “i pay her in turnips,” he said matter-of-factly. “turnips? really, dad?” laughter then ensued. “well that, and any other fresh vegetable i have.” hehehe. and he said it all with a straight face. i love this man. it just goes to show you how simple and sweet small town life can be.] it should also be known that my mama and daddy are the best parents one could ever hope to have. i am extremely, without a doubt, overwhelmingly blessed.
- texas hold ’em. that’s right, i now know how to play a poker game. what a great skill to bring back to my christian college! this newfound pasttime should, by no means, suggest i am at all good at this intense sport. but i am working on my poker face from now on. if i fail to laugh at something insanely funny, be assured that it’s only practice.
- a glorious family announcement. i’m going to be an aunt again!!! my sweet sister is twelve weeks pregnant with her second child, and i am so so happy to have another little one on his or her way to us. kaitlyn, my sisters three year old daughter, shared the happy news as we sat down to our meal with the following prayer: thank you for the food, thank you for our family, and thank you for the baby in my mommy’s belly. weeeeeeeeeee! i firmly suspect i will have my first nephew next june. call it a hunch, but i’m pretty good with those! with my three nieces, i have a feeling he will have no shortage of bosses around. :]
- did i mention i make a mean sweet potato casserole? i too did not know this until thursday, but apparently i have quite a knack for the squash-related dishes. besides my established task of making the pumpkin pies, i decided to try this recipe out. it was quite a hit!
sweet potato casserole
2 pounds sweet potatoes (3 cups mashed)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
4 tablespoons melted butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
4 tablespoons melted butter
1/2 cup chopped pecans
scrub sweet potatoes and cut in half if large. bake in their jackets until tender. cool; slip the peels off and mash well. stir in sugar and salt. whisk together the eggs, milk, vanilla, and 4 tablespoons melted butter. stir into the mashed sweet potato mixture until smooth and well blended. spoon the mixture into a lightly buttered 2-quart baking dish. combine remaining ingredients for the topping; sprinkle over the sweet potato mixture. bake at 350° for 35 to 45 minutes.
how was your thanksgiving? do you have any new or old favorite thanksgiving foods?