Monday, April 8, 2013

Sugar Free Strawberry Jam

I love Strawberry Jam but my Mom is Diabetic so we are always looking for less sugar recipes. We found this great recipe but the reviews said that it turned out very thin and not thick like a jam. After some research online and then using the product we found the answer to making great thick jelly. In order for this recipe to be successful you must use the No Sugar Needed Premium Fruit Pectin by Sure Jell. Seriously, unless you find it do not make the recipe because you will be disappointed. 

So the recipe said it would make 6 jelly jars, the LIARS! It only made 5. The 2 in the front are those little jelly jars for gifts. Which will probably never happen because I am very greedy with my food. Seriously, my boyfriend's grandpa calls me bread stick because he witnessed by greediness first hand at Olive Garden. HA! I might share depending on how into this canning business I get, this would be a great gift for a Diabetic or anyone trying to watch their weight. 

6 Cups Chopped Strawberries
2 Boxes No Sugar Needed Premium Fruit Pectin by Sure Jell
1 1/2 Cup Honey
2 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice

  1. Wash and sterilize 5 jelly jars, lids, and rings.
  2. Mash berries and place in large pan.
  3. Add pectin and stir to combine. Bring to a boil for 1 minute while continuing to stir.
  4. Remove from heat and add honey and lemon juice. Combine and place back on heat. 
  5. Bring back to a boil and stir while boiling fore 5 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat and let sit for a few minutes. Fill jars so that there is a space at the top and then top with lids and rings.
  7. Process in boiling hot water bath for 8 minutes.

Pickled Asparagus

I have started my canning venture this week. We canned salsa last summer but being new at the hobby we didn't even sterilize the lids and jars. But surprisingly nothing went bad!
Earlier I did pickled asparagus. We went to Root's Market the Tuesday before Easter. I got 3 large bunches of Asparagus, for under $5! After all week of trying new Asparagus dishes I figured I would turn to canning and got this great recipe for Pickled Asparagus.

3 Pounds Asparagus, Washed and Trimmed to fit in jars ( I used four 24 ounce jars)
3 Cups White Vinegar
3 Cups Water
4 Tablespoons Pickling Salt
4 Tablespoons Pickling Spice
4 Garlic Cloves, Peeled

How to:
  1. Prepare a boiling water bath canner and 4 jars, lids, and rings. 
  2. Combine vinegar, water and salt and bring to a boil in a saucepan.
  3. In separate saucepan fill with water and bring to a boil. Place half of the Asparagus in the pan of plain water and boil for 1 minute. Get out with tongs and run under cold water. Repeat again with other half of Asparagus.
  4. Remove jars from canning pot and place a tablespoon of picking spice and one garlic clove in each jar. Divide Asparagus between jars. Pour vinegar, salt and water mixture over asparagus being sure to cover the Asparagus.
  5. Wipe rims and apply lids and rings. Process for 15 minutes in boiling water bath. 

Friday, March 15, 2013

Happy St. Patrick's Day!


A moist, fluffy cake with melt in your mouth Cream Cheese Icing.

I love baking. I love giving gifts. So I combine the two for nearly every holiday. For St. Patrick's Day I made Green Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing.

They are amazing. 

Green Velvet Cupcakes
2 1/2 Cups Flour
2 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder ( I always use Hershey's)
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1 1/2 Cup Canola Oil
1 1/2 Cup Sugar
2 Eggs
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
1 Teaspoon White Vinegar
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Cup Buttermilk ( If you don't have it do 1 Cup Milk with 1 Tablespoon of Vinegar)
Green Food Coloring, I used a whole bottle, you can use more or less to suit you!

I just throw everything above in the mixer and press mix until smooth. About 2-3 minutes. 
Line the cupcake tins with papers and bake. Preheat the oven to 350 Degrees F. As soon as you put the cupcakes in change the temperature to 325 Degrees F and bake for 25 minutes. You will get large fluffy cupcakes

Nice and Fluffy. This trick has changed the way I bake cupcakes!

Frost with the following recipe:

Cream Cheese Frosting
16 Ounces Cream Cheese, Softened
1/2 Cup Butter, Softened
7 Ounces Marshmallow Fluff
1 Cup Powdered Sugar
Green Sprinkles, of course!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Cream Puffs!!

These are some of the best picnic desserts I have had in my life. Everyone loves them and you can do different flavors to suit everyone!

1 Tube Crescent Rolls
2 Small Packages Instant Vanilla Pudding
2.5 Cups Milk
1 Can Pie Filling of Your Choice (blueberry, strawberry, and cherry are our favs!)
8 Ounces Cool Whipped Topping

* Make sugar free by using sugar free pudding, pie filling, and whipped topping!

Mix pudding and milk with whisk until smooth. Place in fridge until needed.

Take each crescent roll and shape it over the bottom of a greased muffin tin. They do not have to be perfect but try to push seems together.  Pictured below.
Bake for 10-11 minutes until golden brown!
Turn over into a cake pan to cool. 

See perfect little cups! Place a scoop of pudding mix in each cup. Use all the pudding mix they might look full but it will be good at the end. Place a dollop of cool whip on each cup again you can use all the cool whip. Last place a good bit of filling on top each. Make sure you stir the filling up or else you won't get all the yummy fruit! 

Refrigerate for atleast an hour and enjoy!

Monday, February 4, 2013

DIY Upcycled Cabinet

I this ugly green cabinet off a selling group on Facebook for $10. It was good wood, just a hideous color. 
Black Paint
Glittered Lacquer
Silver Spray Paint
Mirrors ( I got mine from Gettysburg Glass Company for $10)
Very strong glue
A handy man or two

  1. I removed the doors by unscrewing the hinges. 
  2. Then painted everything with the black paint I got at a craft store. 
  3. After 3 coats of that I sprayed the whole thing with glitter to give it a nice glow. 
  4. My Dad happened to have epoxy which is what we used to glue.
  5. Then spray paint the hard wear silver.
  6. Put everything back together and wah-la! A beautiful new nail polish cabinet!

Everything is organized chaos inside the cabinet! It is a great little cabinet for nail polishes, brushes, remover etc. 

Remember when you see that ugly free stuff along the road imagine what you could do with it!

Monday, January 28, 2013

Broccoli Cheddar Cheese Braid--Super Easy!

Broccoli Cheddar Cheese Braid

2 Cans of Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
2 Cups Cooked Chicken- I used a rotisserie chicken from the store
2 Cups Full Fat Cheddar Cheese- Do NOT use low fat or not fat--it will not melt right
2 Cups Broccoli -Cooked and Chopped
1/2 Cup Mayo
1 Egg Yolk, beat to a liquid

How to Make it
-Preheat Oven to 350 Degrees F
-Line a cookie sheet with foil and spray with Pam
-Unroll Crescents and place lengthwise on cookie sheet to make a long rectangle
-Push seams together with fingers, it doesn't have to be perfect just put them together, don't stress!
-Combine chicken, cheese, broccoli and mayo in a bowl 
-Place chicken combo in long line down center of crescents
-Cut strips into the sides of the where you have the chicken mixture. About 1/2-1 inch,just match them up on each side
-Fold strips right, left, right,left until finished, like braiding. Pinch strips together to form a seam on top.
- Brush braid with egg yolk
-Bake for 30 minutes, until golden brown. 

Sparkling Sink!

Our sink is disgusting ..I don't think anyone has cleaned the part where you put the dishes after you wash them, because we do not have a dishwasher the funk just builds up. Here is what it looks like--blah, it seriously stinks! YUCK!

What you need to clean your sink:
Baking Soda
Hot Water
Citrus Essetial Oil (I used Lemon)
Olive Oil
Scrub Sponge
Paper Towels

How to make your sink sparkle!
Put vinegar on paper towel and wipe down sink with it. It helps if the paper towel is pretty soaked. 
Sprinkle baking soda over the sink and the vinegar.
Let sit for 1 hour. Seriously, the longer the better. 

Scrub the sink with the scrub sponge.
I used the sink sprayer to then spray off the baking soda with super hot water from the tap.
Dry the sink with paper towels
Place some essential oil on a paper towel and wipe down the sink everywhere
Then put olive oil on a paper towel and wipe down the sink everywhere.

and Wahla-  Looks Brand Spanking New! 

Original Idea From : Happy Home

Friday, January 25, 2013

Menu Planner

Earlier today I wanted to plan the menu for this week, something I do every week to try to save some money on groceries  I plan each meal according to what we have on hand or what is on sale at the grocery store. I found an awesome printable on Pinterest that was the menu for the week, the ingredients for each meal and the shopping list. I did not pin it, shame on me, so I cannot find it! I decided to make my own. Feel free to Re-pin, share, and print. Please try menu planning if you do not do so! It only takes about 30-40 minutes and can save you TONS of dough :) 

Here is the menu planner, you can save the picture by right clicking it and then printing in whatever size you want. You can also right click and press print.  I recommend 8.5" by 11".

Happy Eating!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Upcycled wipes container to bag holder!

Reuse old wipes containers for plastic bags. This is great for in the car for wet bathing suits and trash. It is also great for by the litter box, you can have the bags you need right there and not have to worry about it looking cluttered and ugly!

Items needed:
Old Wipes Container
1/4 Yard Fabric of Your Choice
Mod Podge
Paint Brush
Wax Paper

I orginally got the idea here: Infarrantly Creative ( The whole Blog is awesome and has great ideas!Check it out!)

First off, Measure your container, easier to do with flexible tape measure. Mine was 7" x 17", I cut it a little big for an overlap and the container was the large wipe container.
 This is the picture before cutting. I used a pen to mark off where I needed to cut. Cut with sharp scissors so that you do not have the frayed edges.
Place your fabric on wax paper and cover with Modge Podge.
Once the fabric is dry of the Modge Podge then put a layer of Modge Podge on the empty wipes container. Line up the fabric with a little overlapping. If you have a edge at the bottom it is okay we can worry with that later. Put Modge Podge over the fabric. I place a rubber band at the very bottom of my wipe container and at the very top to create a seal, there were some air bubbles but it was no biggie.

Let dry over night. After drying cut off edge with a very sharp knife. Put on another layer of Modge Podge being certain to get to the edges.

Wah Lah...finished product!

Glittered Wine Glasses

A friend's birthday is coming up. I know she loves White Wines. So I decided to try my hand at putting together a wine gift basket. I had two wine glasses sitting around the house for a few months so I used them.

The blog where I got the idea was Inspire, Design, and Create. Such an awesome blog, she does an amazing job explaining how to do it I'm going to direct you there for directions. The only difference was I used enamel instead of lacquer for my glasses.
Finshed product!!

I put together a wine gift basket for her using:
A basket my Mom got that she was not going to use
Scrapple Wine from Adams County Winery
Mulling Spices from The Spice Man at Pa Farm Show

Hopefully she will LOVE IT!

Happy Birthday Lisa!