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Slow Cooker Corned Beef Brisket

Slow Cooker Corned BeefI don’t care for beef to often but my exception to the rule is when I get to eat Corned Beef Brisket.  I usually prepare it a few times a year.  Using the same method as I usually do I kicked it up to another level this time.  We don’t eat corned beef as most do, we save ours and prepare reuben sandwiches or corned beef sandwiches until it is gone, sometimes we make it into corned beef hash.

With the few added ingredients my corned beef had a whole new level of flavor.  It was so good, Mr.Picky and the kids had a hard time keeping their fingers back as I was slicing it.

Be warned corned beef stinks when it is cooking.  In fact Mr.Picky walked in the door and asked if the dog pooped in the house.  But the smell is nothing like the flavor.  I can tell that is smells like corned beef and not something produced by the dog.  In fact I don’t think they smell anything alike but it is a strong odor.  My mother in-law can not cook it in her house because Mr.Picky’s father the Pickiest father in-law can not take the smell.  So maybe if preparing for guest light some good candles or put the slow cooker in the garage.

Slow Cooker Corned Beef Brisket:

  • 3-4 lb. corned beef brisket (juices included but fat trimmed off completely)
  • 2 cups Guinness stout beer
  • 2 whole cloves
  • package of pickling seasoning (all corned beef comes with this spice packet)
  • 1/2 tsp pepper or 5 peppercorns
  • water to cover

Place brisket with juices from the package in the slow cooker.  Slice and peel the fat layer off and discard.

Add the seasoning package that the corned beef comes with, the cloves, and peppercorns.

Pour in the Guinness stout and then enough water to cover the corned beef completely.

Turn slow cooker to high and cook for about 8 hours.

Remove the brisket and discard the juices cooked in.

Slow Cooker Corned Beef

Slice brisket on an angle against the grain.

Slow Cooker Corned Beef

Serve as desired.
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Sweet Potato Spice Bread

I had a rather large bag of sweet potatoes to use up.  Usually we eat them rather quickly but I guess I had no motivation.   I planned on making some mashed sweet potatoes to go along dinner.  With the leftover sweet potatoes in the fridge the plan was to eat them up.

My Grandmother passed me some Taste of Home magazines she was through with.  I found a recipe for Sweet Potato Bread that I needed to try, as I am sucker for quick breads.  Grandma always has quick bread at her house.  She often served little quick bread sandwiches to us for snack.  Filling the quick bread with peanut butter or cream cheese was so exciting as a kids.  As it turns out my kids love these little sandwiches also.

Sweet potato spice bread turned out great, very similar to a pumpkin bread.  Unlike the original recipe I reduced the sugar and fat by substituting the oil out.  This bread has just a bit of spice and is filled with raisins, and nuts would be great but Mr.Picky will not tolerate them.  The only think I would do differently is whip or blend my sweet potato instead of mashing it.  Mr.Picky questioned the chunks and I lied and said it was pumpkin.

Sweet Potato Spice BreadSweet Potato Spice Bread:

Yields: 2 (9×5″) loaves

  • 3 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cup mashed or whipped sweet potatoes
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2 Tbs flaxseed meal
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Sift together flour,baking soda,salt, baking powder, cinnamon,ginger, and cloves.

In a stand mixer or large mixing bowl whisk together eggs, sugar,applesauce, flax-seed, milk, and sweet potatoes.

Add in the dry mixture until just combined.

Fold in raisins and nuts until all are combined.

Grease 2 (9×5″) loaf pans.  Split the batter evenly between the pans.

Sweet Potato Spice Bread

Bake at 350 degrees for 55-60 minutes.  Cool in pans about 15 minutes before turning out.

 


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Big Soft Ginger Cookies

Back in 2008 I was in the hospital for a week, it was first time I have ever been admitted to the hospital.  At no point did I have an appetite but I had to order breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  Lucky for me I had a hunger husband who took advantage of this.  With every meal the hospital would bring huge packaged cookies from a local bakery.  Mr.Picky learned to write a request for their ginger cookies which he fell in love with.

After I had recovered and felt great I set out to find a recipe similar to prepare for Mr.Picky.  At this point I discovered Big Soft Ginger Cookies Recipe – Allrecipes.com.  I was simply making these for Mr.Picky because I didn’t think I cared for ginger cookies.  I am not a fan of crunchy cookies and to me that is the only way I had eaten ginger cookies.  When I brought one over to Grandma she called them molasses crinkles which they probably are.   Big Soft Ginger cookies changed my mind and I now enjoy these cookies at much as Mr.Picky.

The dough can be made at least a day ahead as long as the bowl is covered tightly with plastic wrap.  Get part of the work done ahead of time during the baking season.  When you are ready to bake continue with the directions.

Big Soft Ginger Cookies:Big Soft Ginger Cookies

  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  •  1 Tbs water
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 Tbs white sugar

Sift or whisk together flour ,ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt. Set aside.

Cream together 1 cup sugar and butter until light and fluffy.  Beat in egg, and then add water and molasses.  Mix until combined.

Slowly add the sifted dry ingredients.  Mix until incorporated.

I believe this recipe works best if you have time to chill the dough for at least an hour.  If you don’t continue on.

Big Soft Ginger Cookies

Shape dough in walnut size balls and rolls them in the 2 Tbs of sugar.

Big Soft Ginger Cookies

Place balls about 2 inches apart on a cookie sheet and flatten slightly with the bottom of a glass.

Bake for 8-10 minutes.  Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to wire rack.

Store in an airtight container.  Then hide them so you don’t have to share.

Iced Pumpkin Cookies and Big Soft Ginger Cookies

Iced Pumpkin Cookies and Big Soft Ginger Cookies

 

 

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Iced Pumpkin Cookies

This recipe is one of the few sweet recipes Mr.Picky requests.  It isn’t fall or hunting season without a fresh batch of Iced Pumpkin Cookies.  His sister would send batch after batch up hunting with him and his father.  When I married Mr.Picky this became my job.  I never did get the exact recipe she uses because she combines a few she found.  So I did the same and Mr.Picky is happy with what I came up with.

Iced pumpkin cookies are not too sweet and most of the sweetness comes from the light icing.  The spicy cake-like texture is something unique to these cookies.  They also taste amazing for breakfast with coffee.

Iced Pumpkin Cookies

Iced Pumpkin Cookies and Big Soft Ginger Cookies!

Iced Pumpkin Cookies:

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup pumpkin purée
  • 2 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Icing:

  • 2 cup confectioners or powdered sugar
  • 3 Tbs milk
  • 1 Tbs butter,melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Let us start with the cookies:

In a bowl combine all dry ingredients and whisk or sift together, set aside.

Cream butter and sugar until light in color and fluffy.

Add in pumpkin,vanilla, and egg mix until creamy.

Add in the sifted dry ingredients until the mixture is combined.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Drop even scoops of dough onto a cookie sheet, I slightly flatten mine with either my fingers or the bottom of a floured glass.Iced Pumpkin Cookies

Bake for 15-20 minutes.  Allow cookies to cool on pan 1-2 minutes and remove to cool on a wire rack.

Combine glaze ingredients until smooth.  Either drizzle or dip the top of the cookie in the glaze.  Allow the glaze to set before serving or storing.Iced Pumpkin Cookies
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Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Have lots of zucchini growing in your garden or someone who does?  Who loves cake? To be honest I don’t, cake would never be my choice of dessert.  If I am going to eat cake this would be the one I would choose.

Chocolate zucchini cake was always a treat my grandmother made during the summer.  Actually zucchini is always of abundance in our home in the summer.  When I have too much I grate it and freeze it in 2 cup containers.  This cake is everything you could hope for.  Not too sweet, moist, and chocolate spice flavor without being overwhelming.

This cake compares more to a brownie flavor but a cake texture.  Plus it has zucchini in it so you can eat more, right?

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Chocolate Zucchini Cake:

Cake batter:

  • 1/2 cup oil or applesauce
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup sour milk (=1/2 cup milk and 1/2 tsp vinegar, mix and sit for 10 minutes)
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 4 Tbs cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp soda
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

Glaze:

  • 3/4 cup powdered or confectioners sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup water

Cream oil, butter and sugar. Add eggs, vanilla, and milk. Beat with mixer.

Sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, soda, cinnamon, and cloves. Add to egg mixture and beat well.

Stir in zucchini and pour into a greased 9×13 pan.Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Sprinkle with chocolate chips on top. Bake at 350° for 30-35 min or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Remove from oven and top with glaze(mix powdered sugar, cinnamon, and water).

*Sour milk 1 tsp to 1 cup milk, let stand for 10 min.

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

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