Sunday, January 29, 2012

01.29.2012 | Cake Doughnuts

Well, this hasn't been the healthiest weekend of breakfast foods for the Keys... But, boy! It's been a delicious weekend of breakfasts. We kick-started the weekend with homemade buttermilk biscuits and sausage gravy, then opened our Sunday morning with these tasty cake doughnuts from the blog Spoon Fork Bacon.

These doughnuts do not require yeast, which means no need for rising the dough, making them a fairly fast dough-based treat. They are lightly crisp on the outside, soft and cakey on the inside, and perfectly coated with a simple powdered sugar glaze...

What you need:
1 quart (4 c.) peanut or vegetable oil

.for the doughnuts.
1 T. vegetable shortening
1/2 c. sugar
1 egg yolk
1 3/4 c. + 2 T. flour
1 T. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 c. whole milk (I needed about 1-2 T. more)

.for the glaze.
1 c. powdered sugar
2-4 T. heavy cream, depending on the consistency you want
1/2 tsp. vanilla

toasted coconut
chopped peanuts
powdered sugar, sifted

What to do:
.Preheat the oil to 365 degrees
.Whisk together the shortening, egg yolk, and sugar until well combined
.In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon
.Alternate adding the flour mixture and milk to the egg mixture until the dough has just formed
.Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead until the dough is smooth, about 3 minutes
.Roll the dough out to a 1/2" disc and, using a 2" round cutter, cut out the doughnuts
.Use a 1/2" round cutter (I used the lid to my hairspray...) to cut out the doughnut holes
.Carefully drop 3-4 doughnuts into the oil and fry until the edges begin to turn golden, then flip and continue frying until the whole doughnut is a deep golden brown color, about 2 minutes total.
.Drain on a paper towel and repeat the process until all doughnuts and doughnut holes have been fried
.Dip each doughnut into the glaze, then gently press them into your desired garnish until it adheres to the glaze

Serve with a tall glass of milk!

It's nice to share with your neighbors, too!

Powered sugar on my lips,


Friday, January 27, 2012

Sausage Gravy (for those buttermilk biscuits...)

If you are into a heartier topping to your fluffy biscuits, this gravy is the cure to your craving. It's thick, creamy, slightly salty, slightly spicy... it's delicious!
This recipe comes from a blog called Simply Recipes that I have been following for quite some time and have loved everything I made from their site :)

What you need:
1 lb. pork sausage
1/4 c. finely chopped yellow onion
6 T. all-purpose flour
4 c. whole milk
1/2 tsp. poultry seasoning
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
1-2 dashes Worcestershire sauce
1-2 dashes Tabasco sauce (I omitted this because I am a wimp...)
1-2 T. butter, or bacon grease

What to do:
Preheat a 4-quart saucepan over medium-high heat
Crumble the sausage into the pan and let it brown for 1-2 minutes, then turn stove down to medium heat and sprinkle the flour over the sausage
Stir in the flour and cook for 6-8 minutes, until the mixture starts bubbling and turns golden brown
Stir in seasonings and cook for 1 minute
Slowly add the milk and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until thickened (about 15 minutes)

Pour lavishly over buttermilk biscuits and consume right away!

Licking my plate,


01.27.2012 | Buttermilk Biscuits

I hate to admit this, but I did not take any pictures from 01.17 through 01.21 (just 4 days!) because I came down with the flu on the night of the 18th... I was down for the count until that next Monday, and even then not up to par. But! I had a lovely newborn session on the 22nd, which MORE than makes up for the 4 photos that I missed during that time, and makes up for the 4 more days of photos I missed since then due to editing and preparing their disc...

Today, though, I am back in full-swing (hopefully, fingers crossed) with my photo-a-day, self-given assignment and, a little bonus, this one comes with a recipe!

Since I started working only 4 days a week (Fridays off!!), Scott and I have been so blessed to have Friday mornings to spend together. We have made it a tradition to sleep in wake up around 8:00, make a yummy breakfast and coffee, and play a few rounds of backgammon before Scott heads off to school for the day.

This Friday morning, homemade southern buttermilk biscuits! Yum! I also have a recipe for sausage gravy that I will post next, so stay tuned for that!

The KEY to light, fluffy, buttery biscuits is MINIMAL HANDLING. Do NOT over knead your dough! This will result in tough, chewy biscuits (yuck.)
This recipe comes from Alton Brown on

What you need:
2 c. flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. salt
2 T. butter, cold
2 T. shortening
1 c. buttermilk, chilled

What to do:
Preheat oven to 450
In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt
Using a fork, work butter and shortening into the flour mixture. Work quickly, as you don't want the fats to melt. The mixture will be crumbly.
Make a well in the flour mixture with your hands and pour in the buttermilk
Stir with a spoon until just combined; do not over mix. The dough will be very sticky.
Turn dough out onto a floured surface, dust the top with a bit of flour, and gently fold the dough over itself 5-6 times
Press into a 1/2-1 inch thick disc
Cut out biscuits using a 2" biscuit cutter, making sure to push straight down and straight out - do NOT twist the cutter, as this will prevent your biscuits from rising properly!
Place biscuits on a baking sheet so that they just touch
Reform scrap dough, working as minimally as possible, and continue cutting until all dough is used
Bake until biscuits are tall and lightly golden on top, 15-20 minutes (mine were done in 15).

Serve with butter & honey, or with sausage gravy (recipe to come!)




Friday, January 20, 2012

01.11 - 01.16.2012

 All that was left of our yummy dinner.
 Taking off my jewelry after work.
 Newly organized pantry!
 Our new almost-daily tradition: backgammon
 Snuggling down for a quick nap and good book.
Baked potato soup with friends... yum.

More to come,


Tuesday, January 10, 2012

01.09.2012 & 01.10.2012

Scott's daily briefcase - a gift from his groomsmen.

Me in the kitchen after a workout preparing a delicious meal of lentils, sausage, and kale!

Yesterday's and today's photos were taken by Scott.

Monday, January 9, 2012

01.07.2012 & 01.08.2012

To give up the mystery of the husband guest post, Scott was in southeastern Arizona (mostly Tucson).  This shot is from a neat little town called Bisbee, about a stone's throw from Mexico and over a mile high in elevation.

Scott went out to visit with his friend Tyler and meet his awesome new girlfriend Megan!  They hit it off so well they started dressing alike.

Saturday, January 7, 2012


Another guest photo from Scott, at a mission in Arizona.

Friday, January 6, 2012


Guest post from the husband.  Each day until Sunday I'll post one photo from my mysterious location.  Can you guess where I am?

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


just laying on the couch, hair in a high bun, in my robe, admiring my pedicure :)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


an ornament, hanging on for dear life, as the branches of our Christmas tree droop further and further to the ground. a sign that we need to take down the tree...

Monday, January 2, 2012


Another year has passed us by, but another year awaits us... so many opportunities to change, grow, expand, challenge, overcome, enjoy...

One New Years resolution I have made for myself is to take 1 photo a day. Just 1. I'm hoping it will encourage me to just take pictures, because we all know that practice makes perfect :)

I will be posting my daily photo here, on the blog. For the sake of time, I will not edit the photos from the daily photo challenge. The photos you will be seeing will be raw, unedited, straight-out-of-the-camera shots. They will cover a variety of subjects, I'm sure, from the monotonous day-to-day to the more beautiful, well-composed.

So, I bring you Image 1 and Image 2 for 2012...

 01.01.2012 At my parents house watching the Cowboys lose miserably to the Giants.

01.02.2012 In my office, preparing to write out my list of goals for 2012... with my special colored pens because they are inspiring :)

363 day to go,