Cheese and Sausage Bites

I am in LOVE with these little cheese and sausage bites! They remind me of portable cheese and sausage biscuits and go perfect with eggs in the morning!

Don’t get me wrong though…they can be served anytime and are delicious served hot, room temperature or cold.

Cheese and Sausage Balls Blaise the Baker

Cheese and Sausage Bites

2 cups shredded Sharp Cheddar cheese
1 pound hot sausage
2 cups biscuit mix (Such as “Jiffy” Brand)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper

Start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees F.

Combine the shredded cheese, sausage, salt and pepper together in a large bowl, using clean hands to thoroughly mix everything together.

Add the 2 cups of biscuit mix, and once again, combine together with clean hands.

Roll the mixture into tablespoon size (approximately) balls and place on ungreased baking sheet.

Place in preheated oven for 23 minutes.

Remove.

Enjoy!

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Cookbook Corner – Chocolate

Chocolate Blaise the Baker Cookbook Corner

“Chocolate” By: Elisabeth Johansson

Wow – chocolate…chocolate…chocolate! And no – I’m not complaining! I don’t think in life a person could EVER have too much chocolate. Ever. This book is the perfect example of this! You wouldn’t believe the recipes in this book…

How does “Chocolate Balls with Dried Blueberries” sound? (page 57 – and a part of the “RAW chocolate” section in the book), or what about “Brazilian Nut Pralines”? (page 63 and only a handful of ingredients)… More delicious recipes I have marked to try are “Sponge cake with Chocolate” (page 77), “Chocolate Cookie Slices” (page 85), “Baklava” (page 89 – and yes – these include CHOCOLATE – genius!), “Fudge Brownies” (page 92 – these will knock your socks off!), “South African Mud Cake” (page 102), Shortbread with Pecans and Chocolate” (page 120), “Sea Breeze Bars” (page 146), “Chocolate Parfait in a Glass” (page 174), “Chocolate Sorbet with Orange” (page 180), and “Caramel Marshmallows with Walnuts” (page 205).

This book utilizes ALL types of chocolates – and I appreciate that! This is definitely a book for the chocolate lover in your life and I highly recommend it for the “chocoholic”.

To buy “Chocolate”, please click here…
http://www.amazon.com/Chocolate-90-Sinful-Sumptuous-Indulgences/dp/145490898X/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1428026100&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=%E2%80%9CChocolate%E2%80%9D+By%3A+Elisabeth+Johansson

The personal views and reviews of this blog are mine and mine alone. Any opinion or thought expressed are strictly my own. More information can be found by emailing me your questions. Shout out and special thanks to Sterling Epicure and Elisabeth Johansson for this opportunity.

Blaise

Peanut Butter Frosting

I have a new “favorite thing” – peanut butter frosting! I love peanut butter, and just recently started experimenting with peanut butter frosting…only when I was out of cream cheese. Why didn’t I think of this before? Delicious topped on chocolate cupcakes – and even better eaten out of the bowl with a spoon…which may have been what happened the first time I made this.

Try it – and let me know what you think!

Peanut Butter Frosting Blaise the Baker

Peanut Butter Frosting

1 stick (4 oz.) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup peanut butter (creamy)
2 – 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons whole milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt

Start by creaming together the softened butter and peanut butter in a large bowl.

Next, add the 1/4 cup whole milk, vanilla extract, and salt. Stir to combine.

Add the 2 cups powdered sugar, and stir gently.

Depending on the desired consistency, gently add the 1/2 cup remaining powdered sugar, and the 2 tablespoons whole milk and beat until smooth and creamy.

Use as desired.

Frosting makes enough to frost 24 cupcakes – or a 13×9-inch cake generously.

Enjoy!

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Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Balsamic Vinegar

I’ve been in the habit lately of roasting vegetables. They are so delicious and so much better than steaming, frying or boiling them. The oven almost caramelizes their flavor, and really deepens the taste… if you haven’t tried roasting vegetables in the oven – I highly recommend it!

I’ve tried roasting several things – whole roasted cauliflower (here – https://blaisethebaker.com/2015/02/20/parmesan-whole-roasted-cauliflower), kale (here – https://blaisethebaker.com/2014/07/10/kale-chips/), potatoes, carrots, squash, etc.

Tonight I had another favorite – brussel sprouts. Now – before you turn your nose up at these, believe me when I say – they are delicious! Caramelized from the oven a little and then drizzled with balsamic vinegar at the end – oh my… so good! Try them!!!

Roasted Brussel Sprouts Blaise the Baker

Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Balsamic Vinegar

1 – 1 1/2 pounds of brussel sprouts
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees F.

Prepare the brussel sprouts by cutting off the end tips, and then cutting the sprout in half, length wise. Place them on a large baking sheet. Be sure to throw on the loose leafs also – they are AMAZING when roasted.

Drizzle on the olive oil, and sprinkle on the salt and pepper.

Place in preheated oven for 30-40 minutes. After 30 minutes, check on desired doneness.

Remove from the oven, and drizzle on the balsamic vinegar.

Toss and serve hot.

Enjoy!

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Cookbook Corner – The Little French Bakery Cookbook

The Little French Bakery Cookbook Blaise the Baker Cookbook Corner

“The Little French Bakery Cookbook” By: Susan M. Holding

I LOVED this cookbook! I can’t express in words (or this posting) how much I LOVE this book! Know someone who loves baking, desserts, Paris!? Buy them this book – or buy it for yourself if you fall under those categories – and really, who doesn’t?!

The book has a fabulous story (or at least it did to me) of starting over and following your dreams – one baked good at a time. Susan Holding does a great job of telling us about her life’s journey, where it has lead her today, and what she’s accomplished so far.

Honestly – buy this book just for the story alone (I read it like a novel) and you can drop me a line and thank me later.

The book is divided into the following categories – must have recipes and techniques, appetizers and starter courses, breads, parties, cookies and bars, cakes, favorite meals, soups, the breakfast class, our family favorites, tarts and pies and comfort foods.

Just some of the fabulous recipes I’ve marked to try are: caramelized onion dip, puff pastry sticks (I LOVE puff pastry), spicy round cheese bread, strawberry mousse cake, jumbo marshmallows, lemon cheesecake with berries, kitchen sink cookies, marry me flourless chocolate cake, beef bourguignon, tomato bisque soup, big fluffy cinnamon rolls, clementine curd tart with berries and her perfect recipe for roast chicken.

I am really enjoying this book. It entered my kitchen a few weeks back, and hasn’t left yet… I don’t see it leaving either. Fabulous book.

To learn more, see recipes and order “The Little French Bakery”, please click here…
http://littlefrenchbakery.com/

The personal views and reviews of this blog are mine and mine alone. Any opinion or thought expressed are strictly my own. More information can be found by emailing me your questions. Shout out and special thanks to Skyhorse Publishing and Susan Holding for this opportunity.

Blaise

Britney’s a fan! Are you!?

Britney Spears is a fan of “Blaise the Baker” – are you!? 😉

Britney Spears Blaise the Baker Fan Photo

Ok – so that might be an altered picture… Hahaha – but I wanted to grab your attention for this posting. I’ve been getting a lot of questions “Ask Blaise the Baker” (blaisethebaker@gmail.com) about what and where my social media network links are. So here they are…

Follow me, like me, friend me, here…

Facebook: http://facebook.com/blaisethebaker
Twitter: http://twitter.com/blaisethebaker
Instagram: http://instagram.com/blaisethebaker
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/blaisethebaker
tumblr: http://blaisethebaker.tumblr.com

Blaise

Cookbook Corner – Back in the Day Bakery Made with Love

I’m SO excited to share this new “Cookbook Corner” with all of you! I am IN LOVE with this book and have made countless things out of it, and all have been beyond perfection! I highly recommend you BUY IT – but first, you need to read my review – it would be appreciated! Ha! 😉

COVER. BITDB MADE WITH LOVE Hi Res

“Back in the Day Bakery Made with Love” By: Cheryl and Griffith Day

First of all – this is Cheryl and Griffith’s 2nd book. Their first one is fabulous and you can see my review on THAT ONE here – https://blaisethebaker.com/2014/09/17/cookbook-corner-back-in-the-day-bakery-cookbook/

Back to this one – it’s a great book! I DO think that their first one was a little more “sweet” based, and this one a little more “savory” focused – but hey – together it’s the perfect balance. Although, I’m a fan of both, even when standing alone.

I feel like I have a “connection” with Cheryl Day (“Star Brownie”) because over a year ago, I posted something about their “Old-Fashioned Cupcakes” and posted a photo on Instagram – Cheryl commented and clicked she “liked” my picture! We have obviously been BFF’s ever since! Ha! 😉

This book, much like their first, is filled with handcrafted, scratch-made and lovingly put together recipes. Each and every recipe is “made from scratch” and written and developed with love.

OH – and did I mention that scattered throughout the book are “recipes” for CRAFTS!? No? Yes! And they are fabulous… (more on those later)

The book is divided into eight main sections.

The Beginning of a Great Day, Everyday Cakes, Pie Day, Your Day-ly Bread, Holidays and Celebrations, Saturday Supper Club, A Satisfying Treat Saves the Day and Make It For a Rainy Day. (Get the “DAY” connection – Cheryl and Griffith DAY – you did!? Ok – good… Ha!)

First of all – when flipping through the book you will notice the beautiful photographs – I mean, gorgeous pictures with some of the best “antique” items in the backgrounds… I’m a believer in “it’s all about the details” – and this book and its photos hits that head on!

Just some of the delicious recipes that can be found in the book are… (I’ll share some of my personal photos, but don’t want to bombard this review with pictures. If you want to see more of my photos follow me on social media).

“Jam Muffins” (page 15) which taste like jelly filled donuts – in muffin form! How bad can that be?! I’ve had these for breakfast more than a few times, and they really get better after the first day. The jelly and the muffin “get to know each other” and (dare I say) get even more MOIST and delicious.

(Page 17 – I love buttermilk too…)

“Chocolate Bubble Loaf” (page 31) is not only fun to make and eat – but fun to say! Say it with me “Chocolate Bubble Loaf” – “Chocolate Bubble Loaf”! Isn’t that fun!? What is a “bubble loaf”? It’s like “monkey bread” – a pull apart loaf that can be shared – and so fun for entertaining! I’m going to be honest here…the first time I made this…I ate it all. Every “bubble” – every crumb. It’s delicious, and so easy to make!

“Banana Chiffon Cake with Banana-Cream Cheese Frosting” (page 65) is quite possibly the moistest cake I’ve ever had. (Yes – I use the word MOIST. I know a lot of people don’t like it – but I do – get over it…) The bananas in this cake make it the PERFECT “make ahead” cake because once it sets overnight – wow! Delicious, and full of so much flavor, you won’t believe it! AND the “Banana Cream Cheese Frosting”!? You might want to make a double batch. One batch to frost the cake – the other batch to eat, straight from the bowl with a spoon.

“Ginny’s Chocolate Chip Cake with Classic Buttercream” (page 68) is on my list “to make” – and SOON! Follow me on Instagram (http://instagram.com/blaisethebaker) to get my updates about this cake. It’s a delicious butter cake with chocolate chips in the batter, and then frosted with chocolate buttercream frosting. I can’t wait to try this!

“Lemon Poppy Seed Cake with Lemon Glaze” (page 76) really hits the spot when I’m wanting my “lemon fix”. For those who follow me on my social media links, you know – I LOVE LEMON! This is delicious – and really fresh tasting! AND speaking of lemon and fresh tasting and needing a “lemon fix” – flip to page 81 – “Lemon Pudding Cakes”! Heavenly! Like lemon!? You will melt over these delicious little cakes…

“Baby-Cake Party Hat” (page 87) CRAFT ALERT – CRAFT ALERT! Remember when I said there were also CRAFTS involved – scattered throughout the book and in between the recipes? This is the first one – and it’s adorable! Perfect for a child’s birthday party – and so easy to assemble! Great idea…

“Banoffee Pie” (page 96) is delicious and was gobbled up when made for a local “pot luck” dinner. “Where did you get this recipe?” and “How did you make this crust? Is that pecans!?” Was most of what was said… after everyone explained that they wanted it again at the next potluck! It’s delicious – and EASY with only SIX ingredients!

“Cornmeal Sandwich Buns” (page 135) are quickly becoming a family favorite around here! My Grandma and I have been looking for the perfect recipe for homemade hamburger buns…and we found it with these! The cornmeal really adds a certain “flavor” and texture that really adds to the finished product.

“Sweet Potato Lemon Bread” (page 142) because – LEMON! LEMON and sweet potato BREAD!? Yes, and it’s delicious! I’m looking forward to making this for their suggested use of the “Thanksgiving Sandwich” idea detailed in the book. I’ll report back in November how it goes…if I can remember to update! 😉 (Follow me on Facebook to get my updates also – http://facebook.com/blaisethebaker)

“Snack Pocket” (page 149) CRAFT ALERT – CRAFT ALERT! Make a snack pocket out of fabric – it’s a genius idea and the “recipe” can be transformed into using about any kind of fabric and stitch!

“Caramel Cake with Salted Caramel Frosting” (page 160) IS ONE OF MY FAVORITE CAKES EVER! I love anything salted caramel – and this caramel CAKE with the salted caramel FROSTING – delicious! I highly recommend this with a delicious cup of strongly brewed coffee…which is how I first enjoyed this.

“Beans and Corn Bread Cobbler” (page 204) is a genius idea that I honestly wish I would have thought of… my Grandma said she DID…but that’s up for discussion. My Grandma loves beans and cornbread – why not combine them into a “casserole” type dish, and turn up the volume!? Classic “comfort food” recipe.

“Lunch Canister” (page 226) CRAFT ALERT – CRAFT ALERT! This is a fabulous and fun way to use antique / vintage flour,sugar canisters. I want one… I may try this soon… Perfect conversation piece for the office…

“PB & J Sammies” (page 250) are delicious! I used strawberry jam in mine – perfection!

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sammies Back in the Day Bakery Made With Love Blaise Doubman

“Cotton Candy Meringues” (page 252) are amazing! I may never eat cotton candy the “normal way” again. These are so much fun to make (and easier than the normal way of making cotton candy) and taste even better than the “circus” treat! I think these would be fun dyed different colors and cut out with different shaped cookie cutters! AND – no flour – perfect for those who are “Gluten-free”!

“Star Brownies” (page 254) are quite possibly the best brownies I’ve ever tasted. RICH, fudgy, packed with flavor and super easy to make… Yes – you need to beat the batter 100 times after each egg addition. BUT – it’s a workout for your arms – and I need all the extra exercise I can get! Ha! 😉 These have been made several times… and they are gobbled up almost immediately.

Star Brownies Back in the Day Bakery Made With Love Blaise Doubman

“Lemon Buttermilk Fudge” (page 260). I love lemon. I love buttermilk. I love fudge. That is all… 😉

“Apple Butter” (page 274) is by far one of the best recipes for apple butter I’ve ever found. I don’t know if it’s the mixture of spices, or what – I think it is – but DELICIOUS!

Some of the other delicious recipes that fill this book are, “Raspberry Corn Muffins” (page 18), “Cinnamon Walnut Bread” (page 29), “Eggnog French Toast” (page 41), “Very Berry Bundt Cake with Buttermilk Glaze” (page 55), “Strawberry Buttermilk Cake” (page 74), “Pineapple Upside-Down Cake” (page 84), “Orange Buttermilk Pie” (page 100), “Blackberry and Apple Pie” (page 106), “Razzleberry Crisp” (page 115), “Sorghum Whole Wheat Bread” (page 131), “Buttermilk Dinner Rolls” (page 134), “Cibatta Rolls” (page 138 – and made easy with “step by step” photos), “Savory Rosemary Lemon Shortbread” (page 145), “Baby Cakes with Vanilla Meringue Buttercream” (page 152), “Alabama Lane Cake” (page 177), “Buttermilk Brown Sugar Cheesecake with Sorghum-Caramel Pecans” (page 187), “Sweet Potato PotPie” (page 202), “Spoon Bread” (page 210), “Pizza the Day Way” (page 213), “Chive Parmigiano-Reggiano Popovers” (page 219), “Honey Oat Cookies” (page 232), “Key Lime Shortbread Cookies” (page 236), “Decorated Sugar Cookies” (page 246 and made super simple with “step by step” how-to photos on decorating), “Salted Caramel Popcorn” (page 259), “Blackberry Lime Jam” (page 269), “Vidalia Onion Marmalade” (page 272), “Pickled Red Onions” (page 277) and “Homemade Syrups” (page 286).

Well – I could go on and on and on, (and some might say I have) but just trust me – BUY THIS BOOK! I highly recommend it for those who love sweet, savory, Cheryl and Griffith Day and delicious “made from scratch” food with love…

To buy “Back in the Day Bakery Made with Love” and to learn more about Cheryl and Griffith Day, and their fabulous bakery, please click here…

http://www.backinthedaybakery.com/

The personal views and reviews of this blog are mine and mine alone. Any opinion or thought expressed are strictly my own. More information can be found by emailing me your questions. Shout out and special thanks to Artisan books, Workman Publishing and Cheryl and Griffith Day for this opportunity.

Blaise

Cookbook Corner – Homemade Doughnuts

Doughnuts Blaise the Baker Cookbook Corner

“Homemade Doughnuts” By: Kamal Grant

I loved this book! First of all – let’s be fair here – I LOVE doughnuts… so – that helps in me loving this book. This cookbook is filled with tips and tricks – and a LOT of techniques – for perfecting the perfect doughnut. I will admit, that I’ve always wanted to make my own doughnuts, but haven’t really attempted much (I mean outside of making them with refrigerated biscuits; who hasn’t done that!? BUT they just aren’t the same) until recently.

This book will definitely be at my side when I start to attempt doughnuts – right now I’m in the middle of a “pie quest” – but I’m so excited to try some of these delicious looking recipes. The book is divided into “doughnut” recipes, “glazes and icing” recipes, “fillings” and other doughnut “accoutrements”. And honestly?! I LOVE that he’s put the book together this way – that way you can create your own flavor combinations!

For example, pick a doughnut recipe (such as “red velvet cake doughnut” on page 40, and then pick a glaze recipe – such as “salted caramel icing” on page 81) and then CREATE! The sky is the limit here – but I mean, really, how delicious does a red velvet salted caramel doughnut sound!? Amazing!

I highly recommend this book to people who want to create (and devour) their own delicious doughnuts! Kamal has done a fabulous job with this book and it’s recipes – the photographs are spectacular as well!

To buy “Homemade Doughnuts”, please click here…
http://www.amazon.com/Homemade-Doughnuts-Techniques-Recipes-Sublime/dp/1592538452/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1428025891&sr=8-1&keywords=homemade+doughnuts

The personal views and reviews of this blog are mine and mine alone. Any opinion or thought expressed are strictly my own. More information can be found by emailing me your questions. Shout out and special thanks to Quarry Books and Kamal Grant for this opportunity.

Blaise

Cookbook Corner – Lighten up, y’all

I know this is shocking coming from me…but I’m in love with Virginia Willis’ new cookbook which features “Classic Southern Recipes made Healthy and Wholesome”. Believe me – you will want this book!

Lighten up, y'all Cookbook Corner Blaise the Baker

“Lighten up, y’all” By: Virginia Willis

First, let me say – I know, I’m as shocked as you are that I’m featuring (and currently LOVING) a “healthy” cookbook. But really, I don’t consider this a “health” cookbook. What Virginia Willis has managed to do with her delicious southern recipes, is amazing! She’s taken them, lightened them up, and somehow – managed to find a way to keep ALL of their delicious flavor!

I’ve tried a few recipes from this book, and I can’t believe how much I enjoyed them!

What kind of delicious southern recipes are featured in the book!?

How do these sound…

“Sinless Seven Layer Dip” (page 18), “Slice and Bake Parmesan-Herb Cheese Straws” (page 22), “Barbecue Meatballs” (page 28), “Shortcut Chicken Pasta Salad” (page 37), “Broccoli Slaw with Light Buttermilk Ranch” (page 49), “Creamed-Corn Stuffed Tomatoes” (page 63), “Green Beans with New Potatoes and Candied Garlic” (page 67), “Baked Zucchini Crisps” (page 75), “Red Beans and Greens” (page 85), “Broccoli and Cheese Rice Grits” (page 89), “Buttermilk Potato Gratin” (page 95), “Beer-Battered Shrimp with Spicy Ketchup” (page 113), “Smothered and Covered Chicken and Gravy” (page 125), “Turkey Meatloaf with Mushroom Gravy” (page 137), “Pulled Pork Tenderloin with Red Pepper Vinegar Sauce” (page 151), “Creamy Broccoli-Parmesan Soup” (page 163), “Beef and Farro Soup” (page 174), “Buttermilk Biscuits with Turkey Sausage” (page 183), “Stovetop Apple Pie” (page 206), “Chasing the Carrot Cake” (page 208) and “Big Rich Chocolate Sheet Cake” (page 212).

And that’s not even a FOURTH of the delicious recipes that fill this book!

The gorgeous picture on the cover? “Makeover Broccoli Mac and Cheese” (page 96) – is well worth the price of the book. And it doesn’t even TASTE “lightened up”! It’s amazing…

I’ve really learned quite a bit from this book. I usually flip through “low fat / healthy” cookbooks, and put them right back on the shelf. This one has been in my kitchen for awhile – and I don’t see it leaving anytime soon. I’m still so impressed with how the simple “swap” of a few ingredients can make all the calorie differences in a dish. Certain ingredients really add up in calories, without even realizing it.

This book is informative, a fun read (believe me, I can’t say that about most “lightened up” cookbooks), delicious looking photos and great “comforting” recipes! You will want to add this one to your collection!

To learn more about Virginia Willis, please click here…
http://virginiawillis.com/

To buy “Lighten up, y’all”, please click here…
http://www.randomhouse.com/book/228130/lighten-up-yall-by-virginia-willis

Want to TRY some of the delicious recipes featured in the book? Click here…
http://blog.virginiawillis.com/

The personal views and reviews of this blog are mine and mine alone. Any opinion or thought expressed are strictly my own. I received this book from “Blogging for Books” for this review. More information can be found by emailing me your questions.

Blaise

Slow Cooker BBQ Pineapple Chicken

I’ve been getting requests for more chicken recipes on my blog, so I thought I would post one of my current favorites… This recipe, made in a slow cooker, makes the chicken so unbelievably juicy, you won’t believe it! (I really wanted to say “moist” – but I hear that a lot of people aren’t a fan of the word…!?)

This is amazing served alongside with white (or brown) rice and a roasted vegetable of some kind. (Such as my “Parmesan Whole Roasted Cauliflower”, recipe here – https://blaisethebaker.com/2015/02/20/parmesan-whole-roasted-cauliflower/)

This can also be made WITHOUT the pineapple – no need to adjust anything – just don’t add it. BUT – the addition of the pineapple, really adds a “sweet” flavor that goes well with the BBQ taste.

AND – yes, I should have taken the chicken out, placed it on a nice plate, bed of rice, and THEN taken the picture… I’m working on it, I’m working on it… Ha! 😉

(I most of the time just simply don’t have the patience for it…)

Slow Cooker BBQ Pineapple Chicken Blaise the Baker

Slow Cooker BBQ Pineapple Chicken

4-6 chicken breasts
1 bottle BBQ sauce
1 small can of crushed pineapple

The above ingredients are what I use – everything “normal” size. If you want to use a different flavored BBQ sauce – go ahead. If you want to use a little more / less of the crushed pineapple – feel free! Experiment and have fun!

Start by spraying the inside of your slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray.

Combine the bottle of BBQ sauce and can of crushed pineapple together in a small bowl and stir to combine. Place chicken in slow cooker and pour over BBQ and crushed pineapple mixture. No need to add any other liquid!

Set your slow cooker on…

HIGH for 3 hours and check OR LOW for 5 hours and check.

Enjoy!

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