Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Pumpkin Cheesecake!

 I don't know if I've mentioned this before...but I sincerely
love, Love, LOVE Fall!  
Really, I do...
Something about the winds of change,
leaves changing color and blowing about on a gusty day...

There's also all the fall fashionable clothing that
begins to make, pull over hoodies, 
gloves, scarves, beanies...

Another beautiful thing I indulge in:
Bon Fires!  
Around here, we like to have a bunch of friends come hang 
out in our back yard...chill out in the hammock 
and lawn chairs all to roast marshmallows
and make some S'mores!
Nothing feels more like home...friends & family just having a 
perfect night of food, laughter & gorgeous weather!
In my humble opinion, I like to char my mallows just 
a tad bit~takes me back to my 
grandma who used to 
always say that charred food is good for the heart!
I have no idea how true that might be, if at all, but hey...
it's a wonderful memory of my don't
harsh my, mallow in this case ;)

Then, there's all the flavors of Fall...
Pumpkin, Maple, Pecan...mmm hmmm
I'm drooling just thinking about
all kinds of deliciously flavored cakes, pies, 
cookies, muffins...
Oh and the aromas...........

*** La dee dee, dah ***

Okay, sorry about that, I got lost for a bit
but I'm back!

Unfortunately, the sad truth is that I live in a part of the country
where we don't see much of leaves turning all those wonderful
reds, browns and golden colors...
I do, however, break out my fall weather apparel as soon
as the first break in temperature
and all ;)
I take advantage of the cooler nights to be outside...
in my hammock...
listening to my iPod...
or reading...
(who am I kidding, I'll more likely be playing a farm game on my phone)
with a small, cozy blanket...

This cooler weather enables me to crank my oven on,
open up the windows and my
sliding doors as well.
 I'm not gonna lie, 
a part of me likes to do this just to remind my neighbors that 
Fall has arrived
as the cooler breeze carries warm scents of 
 Pumpkin Pies...
No, Pumpkin Cheesecake
into their homes and permeates everything 
around them!
To some, that might be considered mean and cruel, 
but hey, I call it sharing!
It's a friendly reminder that something Fantastical
(it's a word in MY vocabulary, don't be jelly ;)
 is coming out of my oven, 
so it's time for them to jump on it and do the same!

No?  Okay,
well how about I just share my favorite fall recipe with you...
well, one of them anyways, and maybe you can tease
your neighbors same as I do :)

Pumpkin Cheesecake!
I say Yea-uh!


*1/3 cup Pecan Chips
*12 tbsp Unsalted Butter
*2 1/2 cups Graham Cracker Crumbs
*2 3/4 cup Sugar
*1 1/4 tsp Salt
*2 lbs Cream Cheese (yes, pounds!)
*1/4 cup Sour Cream
*1 can Pumpkin Puree (15 oz~I use Libby's)
*6 eggs
*2 tsp Vanilla Extract--Pure
*1 1/2 tsp Maple Flavoring
*2 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
*1 tsp Ground Ginger
*1/4 tsp Ground Cloves
*2 cup Heavy Cream


*** Using a small pan, (medium-high heat) toast pecan chips being careful NOT to burn them...
once you start, do not walk away as you'll need to stir them around.  When done, pour out
onto a paper towel lined plate & set aside to cool.

*** Set cream cheese on counter to come to room temperature,
and measure out the eggs into a bowl and beat with
a fork lightly, and set aside.

*** Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

***Melt butter and brush a 10-inch springform pan with some of it. Stir the
remaining butter with the crumbs, 1/4 cup of the sugar, 1/4 tsp (pinch) salt and the toasted pecans
in a bowl. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom and up
the sides of the pan, packing it tightly and evenly. Bake until golden brown,
15 to 20 minutes. (Use this crust baking time to get the filling prepared)

*** While the crust is baking, bring a medium pot of water to a boil.

*** Meanwhile, beat the cream cheese with a mixer until smooth. Add the
remaining 2 1/2 cups sugar
and beat until just light, scraping down the sides of the bowl
and beaters as needed. Beat in the sour cream, then add the pumpkin, eggs,
extracts, 1 teaspoon salt and the spices and beat until just combined.
Set aside this filling in the fridge until the crust has
finished baking.  

*** Once crust is done baking, remove from oven
and cool on a wire rack, about 15 minutes or so.
Wrap the outside of the springform pan
with foil and place the springform pan into a roasting pan
that is at least 2-3 inches deep. (Note:  It's best if the foil
that is used is wide enough to cover the bottom of the springform pan
so as to prevent the seams from absorbing some water 
that MIGHT work it's way into the foil wrapping,
which may give a slightly soggy crust.  I use the Heavy Duty Foil 
that comes packaged as 75 sq ft, which is
18 in wide~wide enough to cover my 10-in springform pan
with a few inches to spare!  I then make 2 layers, 
for added protection, because that's how I roll ;)

*** Remove filling from fridge and give it a quick stir then
pour into the cooled crust.

*** Gently place the roasting pan (with the filled springform pan inside it) into the
oven (don't pull the rack out) and pour the boiling water into the roasting pan, being careful
not to splash water into the cheesecake pan.  Keep pouring in the hot water
until it comes to about halfway up the side of the springform pan.

*** Bake until the outside of the cheesecake sets but the center is still loose, about 1 hour 45 minutes.

*** Turn off the oven and open the door briefly to let out some heat. Leave the cheesecake in the oven for 1 more hour, then carefully remove from the roasting pan and cool on a rack.

*** Run a knife around the edges then unlock and remove the springform ring.
 Cover and refrigerate at least 8 hours or overnight.

*** Bring the cheesecake to room temperature 30 minutes before serving.
To finish, place a dollop of the whipped cream on each slice and sprinkle with some more
toasted pecans, if desired.

I can't take full credit for this recipe...I took it from the wonderful
people here and slightly adapted it to fit my
taste preferences!

There you have it!  Nothing says Fall like a creamy, delicious
Pumpkin Cheesecake!

In my opinion, if at all possible, do not skip toasting the pecans...
they add such a wonderful depth of flavor and a nice little
crunch~~unless of course, you're allergic to them...or just don't like them,
then definitely leave them out!

Hope you try this recipe out...let me know what you think ;)

 Thanks a million for indulging me by reading clips of my life!

Love ya,
Cori ;)

Monday, June 9, 2014

Long Time Gone...

I'm so, so, so sorry for neglecting you...
yes ONE loyal

Where have I been?  Loitering around here in my humble abode...
just not here, as in "at my desk".
Why not?  3 Reasons:  

#1:  We rearranged furniture here in my living room area
and I had this brilliant idea to move
my desk along with my desktop
over to this side of my living room...ya know, 
between my sofa and kitchen table (which I rarely eat at...yes, I
know...but that's a story for a different day ok), up against the wall, 
by the window...side window, that is.
My home isn't very big, so
space is a little tight!
Don't get me wrong, I liked this layout...just out of the way which
I must say, did seem to flow very nicely, but......
didn't work out well for my blogging.
So, I plan to rearrange my the near future!!
( husband doesn't know that yet ;)

#2:  Things here in the Casa de Pullin (as we like to call it) have been 
"Cray-Cray" this past year.  My husband, who is a retired
firefighter, had some serious mobility issues
that resulted from an injury he 
sustained while on the job...
well they got worse!  Around the same 
time, there were some other
family health issues that also came to 
light...You know that saying:
"When it rains......."
Well, to put it simply...
that's a little thing we call Life!  Needless
to say, we are still here...for now ;)

#3:  Despite having a smartphone & tablet, I have
been unable to get in here and send 
you a little note.  Not because I can't access
my blog on either's just that 
the keyboard is too tiny & that, my friend, frustrates me...
more than I care to admit.  I will inform you, 
though, that about 2 months
ago, I came in here and posted, but...
my internet glitched...BIG TIME
and everything...and I mean
EVERYTHING I had typed was lost!
You know how that goes...I 
gave up and figured I'd 
re-apologize at some later point in time....
(today ;)

Now, on to what I intended to share with you today...

I have a recipe to share with you today!
Yes...I'm sharing!!! 
Woo-hoo ;)

Well, hold on to your excitement...I know
deep down inside, you're at the edge of 
your seat! I'm just that interesting ;) 

I'm really excited to share this recipe with you
and I hope it's one you 
try out....and I encourage you to give me 
some feedback as to how it turned
out and what you thought 
of it. 

Quinoa Salad
(pronounced keen-wa)

What is it?  It is a tiny type of grain that is a great source
of iron and protein.  It is also a gluten-free seed.
(A word of caution:  If you're not too familiar with Quinoa,
then I suggest that you buy the one that has been pre-rinsed!  
It should say on the package if it is.  I bought some that wasn't and 
I guess I didn't rinse it long enough or something because
it had a bitter taste...not good!  Personally, I like to use
Bob's Red Mill brand.  One 26 oz bag
is good for a few recipes)

1 cup Quinoa, uncooked seeds 
2 cups Chicken Broth
1 can Sweet Corn, drained
1 can Black Beans, drained and rinsed
1 Roasted Red Bell Pepper, diced (I use the jarred kind)
1/4 cup Red Onion, diced
1/2 cup Cilantro, chopped
1/2 Olive Oil, extra virgin
Juice of 1-2 Lemons
Salt & Pepper to taste

Cook the Quinoa:
In a medium sauce pan, bring the chicken broth to a boil.  
Add the quinoa and return to stove.  Once it begins boiling 
again, cover with a tight fitting lid and reduce heat
to medium.  Simmer for about 12 minutes, or until all
liquid has been absorbed.  Remove from heat and let it sit 
covered & undisturbed for about
10-15 minutes.  

In the meantime, while quinoa is resting, you
can begin working on the rest of the ingredients.
You will need a nice sized bowl for this ;)  Drain corn and place 
inside bowl.  Drain and rinse the black beans and place 
them in the bowl as well.  If you bought the roasted 
red bell peppers that come in a jar, just remove 
one, (making sure no seeds are present)
dice it up and place in the bowl.  Do the same 
with the red onion and cilantro.   By this time, your
quinoa should be ready.  Uncover and fluff it up with a 
fork and put it in the bowl as well.  Juice one lemon, being
careful to remove seeds....(don't want to break a tooth biting 
into one of those little suckers!) and pour it,
You guessed it, the bowl too!  Sprinkle salt and pepper 
according to what your taste buds prefer ;)
Then, pour in olive oil and give it all a nice stir, making
sure it's all combined nicely.
Taste & make adjustments if needed...adding more
oil, salt, pepper and/or lemon accordingly!

Then, enjoy immediately while it's still warm...
or cover and place in fridge to get cold!

I like it fresh and kids like it cold, so it's really up to 
what you prefer.  I will add that an excellent suggestion 
is to get yourself a heat proof plate, layer a handful
of tortilla chips (as pictured above),
 serve a nice amount of this mixture over them,
then top with shredded chicken,
and some shredded cheese (Mexican blend works nicely, but 
up to your personal buds ;) 
Put this plate in a toaster oven (or your regular oven) and 
broil for a couple of minutes or until your cheese is 
nice and melted...not burned, unless you like
it that way.....
and enjoy!

Easy peasy!! On a side note, this recipe is
so forgiving that you can adjust the amounts of the
ingredients according to what pleases you....
If you like more cilantro,  then add some
more...not a fan of it, swap it out
for parsley! I'm sure there's
a beautiful way to enjoy this tasty...
and healthy grain ;) 

Well, that's it!  It's a healthy and delicious salad that 
goes well all by it's lonesome self...
or as a side dish...
or as I suggested...under all that 
gooey cheese and chicken...
I tell you, those chips give it a nice crunch!
It's a win-win with this recipe,
well, in this home it is anyway!

I hope to get some feed back...
comments, questions, suggestions.........
they're all welcomed ;)

Thanks for using some of your precious time to let me bore you 
for a few minutes...
Let me do it again some time ;)

Love Ya,

Cori ;)

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


First off...I gotta be honest & say~I had never heard of Macaron's...much
less, tasted one!  That is until I heard the word on
a TV show.  That got me thinking...which led to my being curious...
which led to me googling the term...which, in turn,
confused me a little bit! 
Apparently, there's Macaroon's and then there's Macaron's!
Who woulda thunk it, right? 
Well, when I saw a picture of a coconut macaroon...I quickly
flashed to a childhood memory of grocery
shopping with my grandma~
putting a package (or a couple) of some coconut cookies into
the cart.  They were super
chewy & my grandma would buy them...
all.  the.  time.  No joke!  I remember she had a thing for coconut!
(so that's what they're called, hmm)
Even those sweet Neapolitan coconut candies...
you know, the ones that were
pink, white, & brown striped...
Yea, those~she LOVED them!
Then there was a picture of the Macaron...the fancier one...
and oh, my!  So pretty! Colorful, too!
There are a lot of articles out there that differentiate what
each one is...and, I'm sorry, but in my opinion
(& don't hate me for this)...but I.  don't.  care.
Really, one has coconut and dipped in chocolate (preferably)...
the other is so pretty & colorful...& has a filling!
So they're two different cookies...I'm not
prejudiced!  I'll bake & eat them both...willingly!  
 I've read various articles/recipes/posts about them
& all I kept reading was about how
difficult they are to make!  What~a~turn~off!!
And, I don't know about you, but I HATE failure!
It really bothers me when
something I bake doesn't turn out right~just ask one of my kids...
or my hubster~~they'll tell you how I snappy I get..concur!
Now, I like to read baking/cooking blogs...
& needless to say, I ran across one that specifically discussed
Macaron's. I went over all the info
on them. I debated for....ever... as to whether I should try
making them or not.  Till finally, I figured
"Por que no?"  I followed the advice & tips that Stella
over @ Brave Tart ( so
kindly offered & got to it! 
This is how they looked when I piped them out. 
I managed to get 3 cookie sheets out of this batch of batter.
This is the first pan, out of the oven.
They're broken & collapsing...AND....they have no feet :(
2nd pan out of the oven had some of the same, but
about half of the pan, actually had some feet and
nice round domes.  But I didn't get a picture
of that one...yes, I know, I know...I'm bad
about taking pictures..bad about posting regularly...
how about a random act of kindness &
forgive me?  ..(is that considered random...hmm,
good question..but for consideration another day;)
Onward...this is my 3rd pan...if you look closely,
you'll see the little feet underneath
the round tops...Aren't they cute!!

This is the end result...after being filled with some
Chili-Chocolate Caramel SMBC....

Yea, although they didn't ALL turn out like these pretty ones,
they were fan~tas~mic!!  All-in-all, I was pretty stoked
on how they turned out...esp. the way they
tasted!  Beauty of these, is that they truly are like a blank
canvas...ready to be flavored and colored to anything
that ...basically...floats your boat!
Cheesy, I know!  But you catch my drift...
know what I mean! (Yes, I'm from that generation)
Must've been a fluke tho...and
next batch will probably not turn
out as pretty...but at least they'll be deliciously
satisfying!!  So my ending suggestion is:
Try them~You might like love them!!
Thanks for the read ;)