Monthly Archives: November 2012

Caramel Apple Cider

Spiced Wassail, Traditional Apple Cider

This traditional apple cider recipe is perfect for the whole family, it’s not too sweet, not too tart, and not too spiced. Just the way I remember it -I’m so glad my mom wrote this one down.

Get yourself a gallon of good unfiltered apple cider, and spice it up with cinnamon sticks, pineapple juice, orange juice and more. I’m pretty sure everyone will love it, hot or cold! My favorite is to make this on a cold morning and let it sit and mull on the stove all day. It makes your house smell wonderful, and keeps your family warm and happy sipping on it for hours. And if you have left overs, you can throw them back into the apple cider jug and have amazing cold cider the next day. Mmmm… that’s it, I’m going to the store to pick up another batch!

Homemade Caramel Apple Cider


Spiced Wassail and Caramel Apple Cider
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Spice cider up a bit with a few extra ingredients, perfect on a cold autumn or winter day.
Recipe type: Spiced Cider, Wassail
Serves/Makes: 12

  • 6 Cups Apple Cider
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick
  • ¼ tsp Nutmeg
  • ¼ Cup Honey
  • 3 Tbs Lemon Juice
  • 1 20oz. Can Unsweetened Pineapple Juice
  • ⅓ Cup Orange Juice

  1. In a large pot slowly bring all the ingredients to a simmer over medium-low heat. Heat at least 5 minutes, keep over low heat until served.

Add a tsp. of caramel into your cup, add cider, and top with some whipped cream and another drizzle of caramel, for a fabulous caramel apple cider!

Pumpkin Pie (13)

Better than Costco Pumpkin Pie

Okay, I really like Costco’s pumpkin pie, I think they do a pretty good job of making it light in texture and the spices are good. Overall, $6 for a large pumpkin pie that’s pretty good and already made is hard to beat. But I’m going to go out on a limb and match my pie against their’s.

This pumpkin pie recipe is full of warm autumn flavors like cloves and cinnamon, is perfectly sweet, and just the right texture. This is not a dense and heavy pumpkin pie, instead I think I met right in the middle with just enough pumpkin, just enough custard, and just enough spices, to make this pie one of the best I’ve ever had. I got together with a group of friends last week, and they all loved it too!

But why don’t you be the judge. Try this recipe out and tell us what you think. I think, everyone is looking for something slightly different when it comes to their perfect pumpkin pie, and I’d like to hear how you make yours, and what you’re looking for in a perfect pie. Happy Thanksgiving!

Homemade Pumpkin Pie

Better than Costco Pumpkin Pie
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A light in texture and full of flavor pumpkin pie that will have you wondering if you ever need to buy a pie again.
Recipe type: Pumpkin Pie, Thanksgiving
Serves/Makes: 8

  • Pumpkin Pie Filling
  • 3 Eggs
  • ⅓ Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tbs. Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. Ginger
  • ½ tsp. Cloves
  • ½ tsp. Salt
  • ½ can Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 can Pumpkin (or 1 ½ cups Cooked Pumpkin)
  • ¼ cup Evaporated Milk
  • 2 Tbs. Whole Milk or Half and Half

  1. Whisk eggs, sugar, spices, and sweetened condensed milk together in a pot, over medium heat, continue whisking and adding pumpkin, then evaporated milk, and finally whole milk. Heat for approx. 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until filling thickens.
  2. Place filling in an air tight container and refrigerate overnight or at least a few hours.
  3. Pre-bake your pie crust, let it cool, then fill the crust with filling and bake at 425 for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 and bake for an additional 50 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool at room temperature for 2 hours, and then chill in the refrigerator.

Use your favorite pie crust recipe or store bought crust.
Here’s an awesome page from Paula Deen showing easy ways to decorate your pie crust!



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Craving Chicken and Rice Soup

Cough, cough, and coughing some more is all we have heard in houses. It’s flu season, and all of the Brady Girls have caught the bug this last month. Being sick has really knocked us out of our routines, so we’re super sorry for being absent here. But the good news is we’re starting to feel better and we’re slowly getting back on top of things.

I thought to celebrate this happy sicky season we should make some soup.  Being from Minnesota I should be making a creamy and hearty Chicken and Wild Rice Soup, but that doesn’t really help someone with a cold. So here’s a recipe I posted sometime ago that’s sure to help you get back on your feet!

Italian Chicken and Rice Soup

Italian Chicken and Rice Soup
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This broth based Italian Chicken and Rice Soup is light and healthy. The Chicken and Rice add a nice bit of protein and fiber to this bowl that will fill you up and keep you warm. I served it with sourdough bread to make it a meal.
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Italian, Minnesota Wild Rice
Serves/Makes: 4-6

  • 1 Cup of uncooked 9 grain Rice ( I used a mixed rice package, but you can create your own with ½ cup brown and ½ cup wild rice)
  • 2 Chicken Breasts (cooked and cubed)
  • 1 Quart of Chicken Stock or Broth
  • 1 Cup of peeled and diced Carrots
  • 1 Cup of diced Celery
  • ½ Cup on diced yellow Onion
  • ½ Cup of diced Fennel Bulb
  • ½ Cup of Diced Asparagus
  • 1 Can of diced Tomatoes
  • 1 Tbs Herbs De Provence
  • 1 Tbs Thyme
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste

  1. First, you’ll want to start your rice cooking as prepared on the package in a separate pot or I used my rice cooker. Harder rices like brown and wild rice take longer to cook, I even started this 10 minutes before I did anything else.
  2. Second, fill your soup pot with your broth and set it on medium-high heat. The first veggie to chop and put immediately in the broth are your carrots, they will take the longest to cook depending on how big you dice them.
  3. While they are cooking, get your chicken cooking. I cooked mine in a pan with about 1 TBS of olive oil and 3Tbs of broth, and salt and pepper. You could also cook chicken in the microwave. You want to cook it until it’s just the slightest pink in the middle and then throw that into your soup to finish cooking (this way it won’t dry out).
  4. And now add the rest your veggies to your soup. You can saute onions and fennel together with a small dab of butter, salt and pepper, until they become translucent. Then throw in a bit of broth to get all that flavor off the pan and throw that all into the soup.
  5. Cover soup and cook till your veggies are done. Add rice to your bowl and ladle in soup over the top.