Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Cookies Galore

On Sunday, Pinterest introduced me to a new blog, Naturally Ella.  To cater to my undeniable sweet tooth, I tried Naturally Ella's recipe for White Chocolate and Cranberry Cookies.  They turned out great!  This recipe makes LOTS of large cookies, so be sure to invite friends over to help you enjoy them. 

White Chocolate Cranberry Cookies

  • 12 tablespoon butter (room temperature preferred)
  • 1 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  1. Preheat oven to 375˚.
  2. Beat the butter and sugars together until mixture is fluffy. Add vanilla, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and egg.  Continue to beat until everything is well-incorporated. Slowly add flour, and mix well. Fold in white chocolate chips and cranberries.
  3. Scoop mixture onto a cookie sheet.  I took Naturally Ella's advice and used an ice cream scoop so I would have large cookies. Flatten slightly.
  4. Bake for about 12 minutes or until edges are lightly brown.  (Centers will not be set but will continue to cook after removed from oven. Any longer than this and the cookie will have tough edges.)  Let cool for about 5 minutes on cookie sheet and then move to a cooling rack or plate.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Happy Birthday, Benjamin!

Today my younger brother, Ben, is celebrating his 23rd birthday.  Ben lives in Knoxville where he is a proud UT Vol.  He will graduate in May with a degree in logistics.  We're all very proud of him and can't wait to see what's next :)
Ben and Me at the Cabin in Pickwick - one of our favorite places!

Ben and David - after a football game in the yard

Ben and Dad at Christmas a few years ago

Ben and Mom at Ben's High School Graduation

Ben, David, and Me in Seaside, FL

Ben and Anna in Knoxville

Ben and Cousin Molly :)

Ben with David and Cousins, McKenzie and Carter
Ben, you have been a wonderful brother from Day One.  I used to think of you as my "little brother".  Now I think of you as a dear friend that I have so much fun with and trust completely.  I'm still hoping your next home will be in Jackson, Mississippi.  Hope it's been a happy happy day!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Meet Will and Casen

This weekend, my dear friends, Sarabeth and Justin, welcomed us into their beautiful home in Collierville, Tennessee.  Sarabeth was such a gracious and thoughtful host and made the weekend special for all of us.

Many of my college friends travelled from all over to catch up and spend time together.  Most importantly, we had a Sip and See on Saturday to celebrate two precious boys - Casen and Will:

Will was born on April 1, 2010, and Casen was born on June 8, 2010.  Will's parents are Stephen and Angela Andrews, and Casen's parents are Bradley and Megan Culbreth.  I've been friends with Megan and Angela since my frehsman year in college.  It's hard to believe it's been 9 years since we met.  I couldn't be happier for them and the adorable new additions to their families.   

Lizzie, Casen, and Will

Future UT Vols!

Angela and Will

Jessica and Will

Betsy, Frances, and Casen

Casen had too much partying!

We had a great time getting to know Casen and Will.  As you can see, they were such good sports and let us pass them around all afternoon.  They are lucky boys to have such wonderful parents!

I'm so grateful for all the time we had together and can't wait for the next occasion.  Hope you're enjoying the new year!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Rich Chocolate Pecan Pie

  • 1 1/2 cups pecans
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 unbaked 9-inch pie shell
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • Pinch salt
  • Confectioners' sugar, for garnish

1.  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
2.  Spread the pecan pieces and the chocolate chips evenly on the bottom of the pie shell.
3.  In a mixing bowl, whisk the remaining ingredients together. Pour the filling over the pecans.
4.  Bake until the filling sets, 50 to 60 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool for 30 minutes before slicing. 5.  Serve sprinkled with confectioners' sugar or whipped cream.

I've tried several new recipes lately, but this is one of my favorites, compliments of Emeril Lagasse.  If you're a chocolate lover like me, you will love it!  Try it with vanilla ice cream if you're feeling especially sinful!