Lemon heads and cupcakes….a winning combination!

We tasted these this weekend!  They were great!  They were quite refreshing!  And the crushed lemon heads sprinkled on top was a nice surprise and gave these cupcakes an added zing!  Try making some!  They won’t disappoint you!  And they really are easy!

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Lemon Cupcakes topped with lemon curd and cream frosting

For the cupcakes:

1 box lemon cake mix

2 eggs

1 cup sour cream

1 8-oz pkg cream cheese, softened

2 Tbsp grated lemon zext

1 tsp lemon extract

Mix together the cake mix, eggs, sour cream, and cream cheese until smooth and creamy.  Add grated lemon zest and combine.  Fill paper liners ¾ full or more if you like big cupcakes!

Bake at 350 degrees in a pre-heated oven for 15-18 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched.   Remove and cool completely.

For the frosting:

2 cups heavy whipping cream

½ cup powdered sugar

1 to 2 tsp lemon extract (to your taste)

1 Tbsp grated lemon zest

1 jar lemon curd (can be found in jelly aisle)

½ small pkg of crushed lemon drops (or sometimes called lemon heads)

Pour whipping cream into large mixing bowl and beat on low speed.  Gradually increase speed until cream thickens and soft peaks form.  Turn off mixer and add sugar, lemon extract, and lemon zest.  Beat on medium speed until stiff peaks form. 

Spoon approx.. ½ to 1 tsp of lemon curd and spread on top of cupcake – then ice cupcakes with cream frosting.  Sprinkle with crushed lemon drops and enjoy!

 

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Ole! Time for Mexican Pulled Pork

I have wanted to try this easy peasy crock pot recipe for a while!  And this weekend I will be making this!  We will be eating some (and I use the term “we” very loosely”) Mexican Pulled Pork tacos after this wonderfully seasoned pork shoulder roast sits in the crock pot for 6 to 10 hours making my house smell like it is Cinco De Mayo in February!  You should make it too, and come back and let me know how yours turned out!  I will be wearing my authentic hand-made Mexican blouse while preparing this!  Maybe I will think (or wish) I am back in Cozumel!

Slow cooker Mexican Pulled Pork Tacos (or make Burritos if you have any leftover pork)

The rub is for a 3 1/2 lb pork shoulder – my roast is about 5 1/2 lbs so I will increase my spice amount by 1 1/2)

The Rub:

  • 4 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp ground oregano
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • Scant pinch of ground cloves

The Roast:

  • 3 ½ pound boneless pork shoulder roast
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil

 

  1.  Whisk together the rub ingredients in a small bowl.
  2. If the roast is tied up with butcher string, untie it.  Pat the roast dry with paper towels.  Rub the spice mix into the roast all over, reserving leftover spice mix for later.   Marinate in the rub at least one hour or overnight. (I marinate overnight)
  3. Heat vegetable oil in a frying pan on medium high heat.   Place the roast in the pan anad brown on all sides.
  4. Place the roast in slow cooker, and add any reserved spice rub.   Cook on low setting for 6 to 10 hours, until the pork is fall apart tender.
  5. Remove the roast from the slow cooker and place on a cutting board.  Cut into large chunks.  Then use two forks to pull the meat apart into bite sized shreds.  Return the shreds to the slow cooker and toss to coat with the juice from the roast.

Serve with tortillas, avocados, and salsa (and any other topping you like on your tacos.)

Gracias! For reading and following me!

Who doesn’t like soup??

I made this when I returned from my business trip…….

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and it was as good as it looks!  Wonderful flavor, comfort food, healthy dish, that warms your soul!  And quick and easy!    Who doesn’t like quick and easy!  Make it on a week night using rotisserie chicken and you’re good to go!  Try it, you’ll like it!

Lemon Chicken Soup with Spinach

1 Tbsp vegetable oil                              

4 shallots, chopped

2 stalks celery, thinly sliced                   

1 carrot, thinly sliced

2 (32-0z) containers

    Low-sodium chicken broth

2 bay leaves

4 cups shredded rotisserie chicken meat

1 (6-0z) bag baby spinach, chopped

6 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 tsp salt (or to taste)

½ tsp ground black pepper (or to taste)

 

  1.  In a large pot or dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat.  Add shallots, celery, and carrot.  Cook for 5 minutes or until softened.  Add chicken broth and bay leaves, bring to a boil.  Lower heat, and simmer for 15 minutes.  Remove bay leaves.
  2. Stir in chicken, spinach, lemon juice, salt and pepper.  Cook until spinach is wilted and chicken is heated through, 2-4 minutes. 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

And the winner of the kidle fire HD…. drawn this morning by random.org is…..

 

# 17!  Corgratulations Sarah!!!!  I will get your Kindle to you quickly so you can start using it!  Recipes to follow!   I made a yummy one this morning with Splenda for my hubby and it is wonderful!   Have a great day, everyone and don’t worry!  Another Kindle drawing will be later this year!  And maybe an Ipad will be thrown in the mix!

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Happy Valentine’s Day…..Early!!!!

     Because it’s almost Valentine’s Day, what better time for a giveaway!  And because it’s almost Valentine’s Day, what better time than now to try a new recipe!   I want to try this one….Slow Cooker Mexican Pulled Pork!  And I will make it soon, and someone will get it delivered to them to try and post whether it is a keeper or not!  Because I do not eat pork!  But if I did, this is one I would want to taste!  Just wait, because you will want to make it also!  It is a crock pot recipe and could not be easier but is full of flavor!

In the meantime, which do you like better?   Kindle Fire or iPads?   I have an iPad only because I have an iPhone and I can sync it together – but one of my girls has a Kindle Fire and if I had not gotten an iPad, I would have one of those!   I have a regular kindle and still use it for all my book readings except my cookbooks and I put those on my iPad – they look great in color!

The Kindle Fire HD does pretty much everything the iPad does.  So, because it is almost Valentine’s Day, I am giving away a NEW KINDLE FIRE HD!  It looks like this…….

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You can go to www.amazon.com and read all about it!  And if you already have one, it would make a wonderful gift for you to give to a family member!

To be eligible to win (and I will ship anywhere in the US) all you have to do is leave a comment to this post and answer this question:   If you win, will you…..keep it for yourself or are you winning it to give to someone else??? A daughter, a sister, a son or just for a very special friend????  Or maybe your sweetie for Valentine’s Day????  You have until, what else,  February 14, Valentine’s Day to leave a comment and be entered to win!   Winner will be announced on Thursday, Feb. 14.

Good luck and Happy Valentine’s Day!

My way or your way…..either will taste great!

 

I made a couple of different new recipes a couple of weekends ago……..

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This was great!  I had it for lunch but it would make a great little appetizer and the possibilities are endless!   I took fat free cream cheese and added ranch dressing mix to it and stirred (add to taste); cut washed cucumber (with ends cut off) in half, scoop out seeds on both halves.   Add some of the flavored spread, layer with your favorite thin sliced sandwich meat (I used turkey), some shaved lettuce, thinly sliced roma tomatoes, and there you have it!!! Oh, I also sprinkled a small amount of salt and pepper on my cucumber!   But think of what you could do with this!  Add taco seasoning mix and use sliced beef (or turkey). And I want to try a Dill dip mix!  That would be great with the cucumber!     Think of all the carbs you save for those of you watching those!  Besides, it just looks so cute!

I also made these Crescent Sausage Bites……..

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The Sunday School class loved them!   And the possibilities are endless!  Use hot sausage and pepper-jack cheese in these!   I could also see using Chicken/apple sausage or Italian sausage with a little oregano for additional flavor and a small amount of mozzarella cheese added!  I could go on and on!

1 1-lb bulk pork sausage                                1 8-oz. pkg cream cheese

2 pkgs crescent rolls                                        dash of salt & pepper

  1.  In a sauté pan, brown sausage, drain.  Add a dash of salt & pepper.  Blend in cream cheese until cream cheese is melted.
  2. Unroll one pkg. of crescent rolls on baking sheet (I lightly butter mine first).  Press seams to seal.  Spread the sausage mix evenly over the crescent roll dough, leaving about ½ inch border around edges.
  3. Unroll remaining pkg. of crescent rolls and place on top of sausage mixture.  Press (pinch) seams together to seal, making sure seams are sealed and edges are sealed also.
  4. Bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until dough is golden brown (cooking time may vary with ovens).
  5. Let sit for 5 minutes before cutting into squares.

I hope you will try these and experiment by changing them up!

And in the words of Julia Childs, “Bon Appetit!”