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RAISIN CUPCAKES WITH CARAMEL FROSTING

 Raisin Cupcakes with Caramel Icing These cupcakes are so good in the morning with your coffee or as a snack anytime.  I make them in small loaves, too.  They make a great dessert.

1 cup raisins
1 cup water
1/2 cup or 8 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup walnuts or nuts of your choice, Optional
 
Combine raisins and water in sauce pan and bring to boil. Remove from heat and let set 10 minutes, drain.  Cream butter, sugar and eggs.  Whisk together flour, cinnamon, cloves, baking soda and baking powder. Add to creamed mixture along with buttermilk.  Stir in vanilla extract.  Fold in drained raisins and nuts. Fill muffin tin with cupcake paper and fill about 3/4 full.  Bake in preheated 350 degree oven 25 to 30 minutes testing for doneness since ovens vary.  Note: I made 12 cupcakes and 4 small loaves with this recipe and cooked the loaves about 5 to 10 minutes longer than the cupcakes.  Frost with caramel frosting
 Raisin Cakes with Caramel IcingCaramel Frosting
 
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
3/4 stick butter or margarine or 6 tablespoons
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/4 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
Melt all ingredients except powdered sugar on top of stove. Remove from heat and add sugar. Stir or cool until it has a glazed look and is of spreading consistency.
 
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BLUEBERRY CINNAMON MONKEY BREAD

Blueberry Cinnamon Monkey Bread 2 - CopyThis Blueberry Cinnamon Monkey Bread is so good with your coffee in the mornings, with a tall glass of milk or as a snack anytime.  I love monkey bread and love to experiment with making it in different ways.  This is one of my favorites.  I could make myself sick on it.  You could make this using other berries and fruits, too. I can’t wait to try it with blackberries.

2 (7.5 ounce) cans biscuits (I use the country style)
Blueberries (You will need 80 of them)
1/4 cup white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
5 tablespoons butter or margarine
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup nuts (I use walnuts. You can use whatever you like)
 
Spray bundt pan generously with cooking spray.  Pat each biscuit out on a board and cut in half.  Add two fresh blueberries to each biscuit half and roll it into a ball.  Combine white sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and roll each biscuit ball in the cinnamon.  Put 1/2 the nuts into the bottom of the bundt pan; add half the cinnamon balls on top of the nuts.  Melt the brown sugar and butter on the stove. (Do not cook it, just melt it until dissolved together).  Pour half the melted brown sugar and butter over the first layer of cinnamon balls.  Add the other half cup of nuts and the rest of the cinnamon balls.  If you have any cinnamon mixture leftover, sprinkle this on top and pour the rest of the brown sugar mixture over the second layer.  Bake in preheated 350 degree over 45 to 50 minutes checking for doneness since ovens vary.  Remove when done and let cool about 10 to 12 minutes before removing from bundt pan.  Drizzle topping below over bread.
Blueberry Cinnamon Monkey Bread - Copy
Topping
 
1 cup powdered sugar
3 or 4 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
 
Whisk together until of pouring consistency.  Drizzle over monkey bread.  (If you have extra, reheat in microwave and serve over individual slices of the bread).
 
Enjoy!
 
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YUMMY CINNAMON ROLLS

Yummy Cinnamon RollsThese cinnamon rolls are so good with coffee in the morning and they will keep several days. Just add a little butter on top and reheat in the microwave.  Great for a holiday breakfast, too. Your friends and family will love these breakfast treats.

1/2 cup milk (I used 2%)
1/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 package active dry yeast (1/4 ounce)
1/2 cup warm water
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 egg
 
Spread for Dough
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup melted butter or margarine or 4 tablespoons
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup nut pieces, Optional
 
Heat milk on stove  just to boiling point. Remove from stove and add shortening, sugar and salt. Let cool until just warm. (About 10 minutes.)   In a small bowl add yeast to the 1/2 cup warm water and mix to dissolve.  In a large mixing bowl add 1 cup of the flour, the cooled milk mixture, the yeast and the egg.  Mix well with a spoon.  Add the other 1 1/2 cups flour, mix and turn out onto a floured surface.  Knead about 10 times until dough is not sticky, can add more flour if needed.  Grease a large bowl or crock. (I just use Canola oil)  Add dough and turn once so both sides will be oiled.  Let rise about 1 1/2 hours in a warm place. (I just cover with a dish towel on the counter.)  After dough has doubled, punch down, remove from bowl and roll out to a rectangle about 17 inches by 9 inches.  Combine 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/4 cup melted butter, and 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon. Brush or spread on the rolled out dough. If using nuts, add them.   Roll dough up lengthwise. Cut in slices.  Place in greased 9 x 13 baking dish.  Let rise till doubled.  Bake in preheated 375 degree oven 30 to 40 minutes.  Makes 12 large rolls. Add one of the toppings below.
 
Note:  You can double this recipe.
 
Glaze Topping for Cinnamon Rolls
1 cup confectioner’s sugar
3 or 4 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup nuts of your choice, Optional
 
Mix together with wire whisk.  Spread over cinnamon rolls. (Can do this while they are hot or once they have cooled)
 
You can also frost these with caramel frosting,  too. The recipe for the caramel frosting is below. If you have frosting left over, it is great on ice cream and can be reheated in microwave.
 
 
Penuche Frosting
2 cups brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup butter or margarine
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla
Combine all ingredients except vanilla. Bring to a boil, stirring to keep from burning. Boil one minute. Remove from stove and add vanilla
 
Enjoy!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                   Yummy Cinnamon Rolls
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HONEY – A MIRACLE PRODUCT

I usually repost this entry once a year because I believe in the benefits of this product so much. Check it out, click the links and read the articles, and start enjoying the benefits of honey!

Honey has been one of my favorite things since I was a little girl.  My father had bee hives and we always had a jar of honey in the house.  Today is no different.  I eat honey every day and love it.  I cook with it, put it on my cereal in the mornings, and eat honey and peanut butter sandwiches.

The honey bee is the only insect that produces food eaten by humans.  Did you know that an average honey bee only makes one twelfth of a teaspoon of honey in its lifetime?  The honey bee has been around for at least 30 million years!

Honey has so many uses that I can’t begin to name them all in this post. As far back as ancient times honey was used for its healing powers.

Native American women used honey on their skin as a moisturizer.

According to scientific research honey may be the new antibiotic.

Honey is an instant energizer, an antioxidant, speeds healing of wounds and improves your immune system.  Honey consumption may have a positive effect on factors associated with heart disease risk.

Here is an article I wrote some time back about the wonderful powers of honey and cinnamon:  Cinnamon and Honey, A Cure for Almost Everything

Check out The Healing Powers of Honey, too.

I can’t say enough about this great gift to mankind from the bee.  The next time you get a chance purchase a jar of honey as a staple for your cupboard.

Here is a great recipe for Honey Baked Chicken Breasts, too.

Do you already enjoy the benefits of honey or use it in cooking or recipes?  Leave me a comment on here or Facebook with your thoughts. Thanks.