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10 Spectacular 4th of July Sweet Treats

by Jennifer Wieland
10 spectacular 4th of July sweet treats

 

The 4th of July is one week away and I know that this upcoming weekend will be filled to the brim with cookouts, parties, festivals and just a whole lot of fun and merriment! Whether you are heading out to someplace else or having friends and family over to celebrate this great nation you’ll want to serve up some delicious sweet treats. Today, I am sharing with you what I think are 10 spectacular 4th of July sweet treats from the blog!

10 spectacular 4th of July sweet treats

Strawberry Cupcakes

These cupcakes are delicious and packed with all the summer flavor that fresh, organic strawberries can pack! The frosting is unbelievably light and creamy!

Strawberry Cupcakes a perfect farewell to summer treat.

Lemon Ricotta Cake with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting

This cake is packed with fresh summer flavor and the addition of the ricotta cheese makes for a unique and very moist cake.

Lemon Ricotta Cake with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting #WayfairCakeOff

Firecracker Funfettii Cupcakes with Flour Frosting

These cupcakes will bring out the kid in anyone! The bright sprinkles make the cake colorful and look like a colorful explosion. The flour frosting is different and perfect for people who aren’t fans of regular buttercream but don’t want to worry about a whipped cream frosting in the summer heat. The secret ingredient filling in the cupcakes really makes them POP!

Firecracker Funfetti Cupcakes with Flour Frosting & Pop Rocks Centers #YoungAndHungry

Celebration Oreo Bars

Think Rice Krispie Treats made out of Oreos instead of cereal and you have these delicious bars! They are so simple to make and can be jazzed up with red, white and blue candies and sprinkles for the perfect Americana vibe!

Celebration Oreo Bars

Birthday Cake Ice Cream Sandwiches

Since the 4th of July is a way to celebrate America’s birthday these Birthday Cake Ice Cream Sandwiches are the perfect treat to help honor America and keep cool in the hot sun!

Birthday Cake Ice Cream Sandwiches made with Nielsen-Massey Vanilla #NMVIceCream

Quick Fruit Cobbler

This is perfect for a last-minute, throw together dessert. You can make it with cherry, blueberry, strawberry or the always American classic apple pie filling. It comes together in minutes and paired with cool creamy ice cream it’s a delicious, classic dessert.

Quick and Easy Fruit Cobbler

S’mores Truffle Bars

S’mores are a summer, campfire, cookout staple during the summer. These S’mores Truffle Bars are a grownup take on the classic kid’s treat.

Decadent S'mores Truffle Bars

Four Ingredient CPS Lunchroom Butter Cookies

If you grew up in the Chicago area in mid to late 1900’s then you know and love these simple butter cookies. With only four ingredients these cookies come together in a snap and are delicious!

4 Ingredient CPS Lunchroom Butter Cookies

Strawberry Crème Pie

This no bake pie is packed with delicious strawberry flavor and since it’s a crème pie it is much lighter in taste than a traditional fruit pie. Added bonus, this can easily be made ahead so dessert is one less thing you have to worry about on the day of your cookout or party.

Strawberry Creme Pie

Cherry Pie Bars

This delicious dessert is a cross between a slab pie and almond brownies. The pairing of cherries and almond flavor make for a delicious dessert that’s more than able to feed a crowd!

Awe-Inspiring Cherry Pie Bars to celebrate National Cherry Month with Wayfair.com

What sweet treats are you cooking up for the 4th of July?

 

 


Four Ingredient CPS Lunchroom Butter Cookies

by Jennifer Wieland
4 Ingredient CPS Lunchroom Butter Cookies

If you grew up in Chicago and attended a CPS school then you are more than likely familiar with the classic CPS lunchroom butter cookies that you used to be able to buy at lunch. These cookies were a favorite of students for years and years. If you didn’t attend a CPS school then maybe you were lucky enough to find a store that sold knockoff versions of the cookies. Either way, these cookies are near and dear to many a people who remember them from their youth.You’ll know the ones I’m talking about because of the distinctive ridges in the cookies.

So if you have had these cookies or you’re just a fan of a good, simple butter cookie then this is the recipe for you! These cookies are such a buttery treat and what makes them even better is that they only require four, yes I said four ingredients to make them. In the world of baking there are few things that are easy to make than these cookies.

4 Ingredient CPS Lunchroom Butter Cookies

Once you mix the four ingredients you will see that you will end up with a drier dough that is almost crumbly.

4 Ingredient CPS Lunchroom Butter Cookies

I used a 1 oz. scoop for my dough balls which is larger than your average cookie scoop. You can use a tablespoon to scoop the dough and then roll it into a ball. You follow that up with the classic finger press to flatten that gives this cookie its distinctive ridges.

4 Ingredient CPS Lunchroom Butter Cookies

Don’t press down too hard or too far otherwise you will end up with edges that are overdone. You want their to be about 1/4″ thickness on the edges. That way the edges are just turning a light, golden brown when the cookies are done.

4 Ingredient CPS Lunchroom Butter Cookies

4 Ingredient CPS Lunchroom Butter Cookies
Yields 18
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165 calories
16 g
27 g
10 g
2 g
6 g
33 g
90 g
6 g
0 g
3 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
33g
Yields
18
Amount Per Serving
Calories 165
Calories from Fat 91
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10g
16%
Saturated Fat 6g
32%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 27mg
9%
Sodium 90mg
4%
Total Carbohydrates 16g
5%
Dietary Fiber 0g
2%
Sugars 6g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A
6%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
1%
Iron
1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 c. salted butter, softened
  2. 1/2 c. sugar
  3. 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  4. 2 c. all-purpose flour
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375° and line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners.
  2. Add the butter and sugar to a bowl and cream together on medium-high speed with a mixer until it is light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and stir in the vanilla. In three batches stir in the flour and mix just until combined. Scoop out the dough with a 1 oz. scoop or use a tablespoon to scoop the dough. Roll into balls quickly as the more you handle the dough the more the butter melts. Place on the prepared baking sheets and using your three middle fingers press the dough down so that the edges are about 1/4" thick. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until the edges of the cookies begin to turn golden brown. Let the cookies cool on the pans for 5minutes and then move to a wire rack to finish cooling.
Notes
  1. There is a lot of butter in these cookies the more you handle the dough the more it melts. That is why I prefer to use a scoop over rolling. If that's not an option for you just do a very quick roll of the dough in your hands.
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calories
165
fat
10g
protein
2g
carbs
16g
more
My Sweet Sanity https://mysweetsanity.com/

I bet if you remember these from your Chicago Public School days then you also remember the Lunchroom Peanut Butter Cookies as well. Make sure to grab that recipe too!

CPS Lunchroom Peanut Butter Cookies

These cookies are simple to make but are definitely a rich treat meant to share with others. Do you have any childhood treats that you miss?

Some of my favorite products to use to make these cookies are:

  • Vollrath
    Disher has a molded one-piece handle that improves durability, makes cleaning easy and prevents handle from coming apart-Stainless steel bowl and components to prevent corrosion and insure longer life-Color-coded black handle for no-guess size selec
    $10.09  from Walmart US
  • Member's Mark
    This standard-sized 13" x 18" x 1" natural aluminum sheet pan is a staple for any baker's kitchen. Commercial-grade aluminum provides for even heat distribution - no hot spots! Versatile pan great for any baking.
    $10.78  from Sam's Club
  • Boardwalk Paper
    Color: White- Ply: 2- Length per Sheet: 9"- Width Per Sheet: 11"- 85 Sheet- Designed to suit any budget- Constructed from high quality materials- SKU: ORSNO61027
    $31.57  from Walmart US

Mexican Corn Salad

by Jennifer Wieland
Mexican Corn Salad - Elotes

Growing up in Chicago and being part of a Mexican family meant that I spent time in the Pilsen neighborhood, which is a predominantly Hispanic part of the city. Usually we were there to visit my great-aunt who would always have the best tamales ready to feed us with. While there my parents would hit the Mexican bakery across the street to buy a bunch of Conchas (Mexican sweet bread) for us to take home with us. Us kids, we would beg and plead for my parents to let us stop at one of the little bicycle carts that roamed the neighborhood selling everything from tamales, to paletas (Mexican popsicles), to elotes (Mexican corn on the cob). Since my auntie would fill us up with tamales we would usually end up with paletas if I got to pick or elotes if my sister did. My brother being younger just had no say.

Now though, I am older and I can make my own tamales and my auntie has moved to a different neighborhood so I rarely head into the Pilsen neighborhood anymore but when I do I still see the carts there and it reminds me of my childhood. Same thing happens for my sister but with her it’s funny because she loves Elotes so much that I have seen her head there while pregnant just to find a cart and buy some because a craving struck her. It has happened with every pregnancy I think and since she is pregnant right now I decided to make her some Mexican corn but with a twist. I made it into a Mexican corn salad and let me tell you it was so ridiculously good and one of the favorite foods served at our family Memorial Day BBQ. Now, if you have never had elotes then good God, it is a must try!

Mexican Corn Salad - Elotes

Mexican Corn Salad
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2109 calories
172 g
294 g
159 g
31 g
71 g
1020 g
1796 g
33 g
4 g
78 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
1020g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 2109
Calories from Fat 1397
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 159g
244%
Saturated Fat 71g
356%
Trans Fat 4g
Polyunsaturated Fat 39g
Monounsaturated Fat 39g
Cholesterol 294mg
98%
Sodium 1796mg
75%
Total Carbohydrates 172g
57%
Dietary Fiber 23g
91%
Sugars 33g
Protein 31g
Vitamin A
360%
Vitamin C
215%
Calcium
25%
Iron
32%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 tbsp. + 7 tbsp. salted butter, melted
  2. 24 oz. frozen sweet corn
  3. 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  4. 1 carrot, diced
  5. 1/3 c. mayonnaise
  6. 1 tbsp. chopped cilantro
  7. 1/4 c. Cotija cheese
  8. juice of half a lime
  9. 1 tsp. paprika
Instructions
  1. In a large frying pan melt 1 tbsp. of butter over medium-high heat and then toss in the corn, bell pepper and carrots. Make sure to get it into an even layer. Let it cook until the corn is cooked through and the other veggies are softened a bit. Then give it a stir and flatten again. Now cook until it some of it starts to brown a bit. Remove pan from heat then and pour the veggies into a serving bowl. Pour the 7 tbsp. of melted butter over the veggies and stir. Add the mayonnaise and stir until all of the veggies are evenly coated. Stir in half the cheese, the cilantro and the lime juice. Top with the remaining cheese and sprinkle with the paprika.
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calories
2109
fat
159g
protein
31g
carbs
172g
more
My Sweet Sanity https://mysweetsanity.com/
 This recipe is featured on My Creative Days along with a bunch of other fun and fabulous recipes and crafts for backyard gatherings.


Heath Cookies

by Jennifer Wieland
Heath Cookies

Sometimes I get so caught up in developing recipes that I can go long stretches of time without making a family favorite. This past week my husband was asking me about what new recipes I was working on and then decided to point out that I have not made him his Heath Cookies in quite a long while now. I’m not going to lie. It has probably been 8-9 months since I thought to make them for him. I know that makes me sound like a bad wife but trust me, he is not lacking in the sweets area. So, when I went to do my shopping this week I made sure to get some Heath Milk Chocolate Bits to make them as a treat for him and his co-workers. 

Now as I was thinking about this it also dawned on me… huh, I don’t think I have ever posted this recipe on the blog either. So then when I got home I had to search the blog posts. Sure enough, no post existed. I feel bad about this now. Mainly, because these cookies are freaking amazing! Yup, they aren’t my hubby’s favorite because they’re bad. No these are a sweet, buttery bit of heaven.

Heath Cookies

Heath Cookies
Yields 3
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1633 calories
195 g
301 g
89 g
19 g
52 g
359 g
860 g
113 g
2 g
29 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
359g
Yields
3
Amount Per Serving
Calories 1633
Calories from Fat 783
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 89g
136%
Saturated Fat 52g
259%
Trans Fat 2g
Polyunsaturated Fat 5g
Monounsaturated Fat 24g
Cholesterol 301mg
100%
Sodium 860mg
36%
Total Carbohydrates 195g
65%
Dietary Fiber 4g
17%
Sugars 113g
Protein 19g
Vitamin A
45%
Vitamin C
1%
Calcium
12%
Iron
14%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 c. butter, softened
  2. 1 c. sugar
  3. 2 eggs
  4. 1 tsp. Mexican vanilla
  5. 1/4 tsp. vanilla Fleur de Sel
  6. 2 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
  7. 1 tsp. baking soda
  8. 1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
  9. 8 oz. bag of Heath Milk Chocolate Toffee Bits
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350° and line two baking sheets with parchment paper of silicone liner.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment cream together the butter and sugar on medium speed. Scrape down the sides and bottom of bowl. Add in the eggs and Mexican vanilla and mix on medium speed until smooth. Stir in the vanilla Fleur de Sel, flour, baking soda and cream of tartar. Stir in the Heath bits.
  3. Using a cookie scoop place the dough on the baking sheets and bake for 10-12 minutes. Let cool on the pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
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calories
1633
fat
89g
protein
19g
carbs
195g
more
My Sweet Sanity https://mysweetsanity.com/
For those of you that want to know the difference between Mexican vanilla and the standard Madagascar bourbon vanilla be sure to check out my previous post explaining the differences between the three types of vanilla.


Baking When Half Asleep and Making Butter

by Jennifer Wieland

So what happens when your 4-year-old has not slept at all and it’s now morning? Your eyes are burning, you are still putting her in bed repeatedly trying to get sleep to claim her finally and you get the brilliant idea to make cheater cinnamon rolls. You get them in the oven using the last of your butter to only have it dawn on you that you need butter for the icing. So then what do you do? Well you make your own butter of course. I mean it’s the most practical option. You are in no condition to drive let alone brave a shopping trip with a bunch of young ones, one of whom is so tired she is no crying about EVERYTHING!

So this morning I made butter and cheater cinnamon rolls. Both things I will share with you.

I had this wondrous, half-sleep deprived, delirious idea to make a quick cinnamon roll this morning. I had a tube of Pillsbury Crescent Roll Seemless Dough Sheet in the refrigerator that I was going to use as my base. I got the rolls ready to go into the oven and as I am doing this I realize that I just used the last of my butter on my cinnamon rolls. Now in my current bleary eyed state I was in no condition to go traipsing off to the grocery store. So I did what any other crazy sleep deprived person would do… I made my own butter.

Making butter is a pretty quick and simple process and also works as a great science experiment with the kiddies. You know the whole liquid to a solid thing with something other than water and ice.

Butter & Cheater Cinnamon Rolls

Butter

Heavy whipping cream ( I used 2 cups today)
small amount of salt, herbs, garlic, onion, cinnamon sugar, etc. (only if you want it to be salted or compound butter)
bowl of ice water

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, a blender, or a food processor pour your heavy whipping cream and start mixing/blending on medium speed. You do not want to use a hand mixer as your arm will get very tired. The cream will thicken and turn into whipped cream after several minutes. Keep mixing. You will then after a few more minutes notice liquid forming in the bottom. This is the butter fats separating from the buttermilk. Stop mixing at this point. Have a sieve over a good-sized bowl and pour everything into the sieve. Using the back of a silicone spatula press the curds to get out all of the liquid. At this point you can use the butter. If you want to stabilize it so it lasts more than a few days then you would put the butter back into your mixing container and pour the ice water over it and mix for a minute or two. Drain this using your sieve over another bowl. You can now mix in salt, herbs, garlic, onion, cinnamon sugar, etc. to flavor it. You can break it into small batches and flavor each differently. Place the finished butter(s) in waxed paper and roll them into balls or logs.

Cheater Cinnamon Rolls
makes 9 cinnamon rolls

1 tube Pillsbury Recipe Creations Seemless Dough Sheet
2 tbsp. butter, softened
1/2 c. brown sugar, packed
1 tbsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350° and spray an 8×8 pan with baking spray.

Unroll the Crescent dough and rub the two tablespoons of butter over the unrolled dough, leaving about 1/2 an inch without butter on one of the long sides. Thoroughly mix the brown sugar and cinnamon and then spread evenly over the buttered area. Tightly roll the dough starting from the long side that has butter and mix on it and finish with the un buttered end. Firmly pinch or press the un-buttered end to seal. Using a sharp knife cut into nine equal pieces and place in pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes and the frost with icing while warm.

Cinnamon Roll Icing

4 oz. of cream cheese, softened
2 tbsp. butter, softened
1 c. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla

In the bowl of a stand mixer place all of the ingredients and mix on low-speed until combined. Then turn up speed to medium and beat for a minute or two. Use to ice cinnamon rolls while still warm.


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