Hot Cross Buns – sweet yeast rolls with cinnamon and raisins and topped with icing. Traditional Easter treat.

Hot Cross Buns - sweet yeast rolls with cinnamon and raisins and topped with icing. Traditional Easter treat.

I think Easter’s my favorite holiday.

And yes, I realize that I say that for literally every holiday but I’m serious this time. I think Easter’s my fave.

I mean, Easter candy is most definitely the best candy. Plus you get to decorate with fun, bright colors and dye eggs. And you get to watch Hop as many times as you want and no one can judge you for it.

That’s what the kids and I do. We watch it over and over and over again. It’s our fave.

And finally, Easter food! I love the ham and the salads and, most important, the Hot Cross Buns!

Click for the full recipe


Happy Monday!

I hope you had a fabulous weekend. Mine went by waaaaaay too fast but I’m lucky that we don’t have preschool today which means that technically I can stay in sweats all day and skip makeup. So yay!

I feel like I did nothing all weekend. Like, I even skipped yesterday’s post because I was feeling so lazy. Plus we were about halfway through the zoo on Saturday before I realized I didn’t have anything made and photographed and at that point, it was a lost cause.

Yesterday I bribed my children with gumballs to get them to go thrifting with me. We found one beautimous green Pyrex but here’s the problem. Now, I need the lid that came with it. Which is going to cost me at least $16 on Ebay after shipping. So, a $4 dish with a $16 lid. Makes perfect sense.

Then I watched all 7 episodes of Graceland on my DVR. It’s one of those shows that I literally say “Ugggghhhh” when I realize it’s the only thing I have left but after about 20 minutes of the first episode, I am INTO IT and can’t walk away until I watch every episode.

During my Agent Briggs (let’s be real, he’s the only reason most of us are watching Graceland) marathon yesterday, I had a crazy craving for cornbread. I’m telling you, the carb craving is real lately.

So I made this awesome Bacon and Pepper Jack Cornbread. Typically I go for a sweet cornbread with nothing added in but this one was exactly what I was craving. It’s spicy from the pepper jack and just a little sweet from the honey. And bacon makes everything better!

Of course, you have to smear it with butter and put more honey on top! That’s the only way to eat cornbread.

Click for the full recipe


It has been awhile since I’ve done a yeast recipe but yesterday just called for one. Despite the weather people saying we were just going to get a few flurries, it snowed pretty steadily for a couple hours. And that kind of weather requires a cheesy, comforting meal with a fresh-out-of-the-oven yeast roll.

And y’all, I have to say that I’m kind of ready to be done with snow. I love it, I look forward to it, but this year has been so weird! Normally it melts within a day for us but half our backyard is currently a big slab of ice! Plus the snow means I’m without a car since my husband still hasn’t replaced the broken windshield wipers on his car that I complained about 10 months ago. In his mind, there’s no point since he’ll just be deploying soon anyway.

Men have weird brains.

But that has nothing to do with these fabulous Honey Yeast Rolls. I really love when yeast breads have honey in them and I really, really love when they are brushed with honey butter after coming out of the oven. These guys are so soft and fluffy and basically my idea of the perfect dinner roll. My husband has already claimed the leftovers to make sandwiches.

One year ago: Iced Oatmeal Cookies
Two years ago: Thai Chicken Quesadillas

Honey Yeast Rolls
adapted from Handle the Heat
  • 1 packet 2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1 cup whole milk scalded and cooled to lukewarm
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons butter melted
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
For the honey butter:
  • 2 tablespoons butter melted
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  1. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, stir the yeast, water, milk, honey, 2 tablespoons of the butter, egg, and salt until well combined. Gradually add the flour and knead on medium-low speed until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Turn off the mixer and let the dough rest for 3 to 5 minutes. Continue to knead the dough on medium-low speed for another 5 minutes, or until the dough is soft and smooth. If it seems too sticky, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  2. Transfer the dough to a large greased bowl. Cover and let rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
  3. Punch the dough down and turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface. Roll the dough into a 1-inch thick rectangle. Cut the dough into 2-inch squares. Transfer the squares to a baking sheet and cover. Let rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake the rolls for about 15 minutes, or until golden brown.
  5. To make the honey butter, whisk together the melted butter and honey. Brush on rolls as soon as they come out of the oven.


I have a carb problem lately if that hasn’t become incredibly obvious.

This time it’s for a good cause though. This year Fleischmann’s Yeast, Fleischmann’s Simply Homemade Baking Mixes, and Karo Syrup launched the Baking a Difference campaign to benefit Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign

They challenged me to put a spin on their Classic Dinner Rolls and this is what I came up with. I added a bunch of garlic and cheese and then made little knots. They were really simple and really delicious!

Fleischmann’s Yeast, Fleischmann’s Simply Homemade Baking Mixes, and Karo Syrup are challenging you to put your own spin on their rolls so come up with something delicious and share it on the Fleischmann’s Yeast, Fleischmann’s Simple Homemade, or Karo Syrup Facebook pages.

And I have a fun giveaway to get your started! One winner will receive:

  • A premium bread basket with warming stone, and holiday-festive accessories including oven mitts, a set of holiday spreaders and gourmet Cinnamon Apple Butter
  • A basket of Fleischmann’s Yeast, Karo Syrup and Simply Homemade varieties, including the new Pretzel Creations, to help you get baking.

Answer this question in the comments to be entered: What kind of spin would you put on the dinner rolls? 

US only, please. The giveaway will run until November 28, 2013 at midnight EST.

One year ago: Peppermint Crunch-Chocolate Chip Cookies
Two years ago: Cornbread, Bacon, Leek, and Pecan Dressing
Three years ago: Salted Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies
Four years ago: Vanilla Spice Oatmeal
Five years ago: Garlic Chicken Farfalle

Cheesy Garlic Knots
  • 2 to 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 envelope Fleischmann's® RapidRise Yeast
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder divided
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons butter OR margarine
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
For brushing the rolls:
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  1. Combine 3/4 cup flour, undissolved yeast, sugar, salt, and garlic powder in a large bowl. Heat milk, water and butter until very warm (120° to 130°F). Add to flour mixture. Beat 2 minutes at medium speed of electric mixer, scraping bowl occasionally. Add 1/4 cup flour; beat 2 minutes at high speed. Stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dough; add cheddar. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 8 to 10 minutes. Cover; let rest 10 minutes.
  2. Divide dough into 12 equal pieces. Roll each piece to a 12-inch rope. Tie loose knot in center and tuck ends under. Place on greased baking sheet.Cover; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 30 minutes.
  3. Bake in preheated 375°F oven for 20 minutes or until done.
  4. A couple minutes before the rolls are done, melt the 1 tablespoon butter and stir in garlic powder. Brush rolls with this immediately after you pull them out of the oven.
  5. Serve warm.



Eggnog is one of those things that I get excited about every year because I think that I love it. But I really don’t. And you’d think I’d remember that from year to year but it never fails: I rush out to buy a carton and then gag on the first sip. Someone please remind me of this next year so I don’t get my hopes up again.

So since I had a carton of eggnog to use up and eggnog is the Thirsty Thursday theme of the week, I decided to bake with it. Surprisingly, I really liked this bread. Until I put the glaze on it which is pretty much straight eggnog. But the bread itself just has a very subtle eggnog taste that’s perfect for those of us that want to like eggnog but just don’t. My husband and kids loved it with the glaze though so if you’re an eggnog fan, definitely add it.

Nicole made homemade cooked eggnog with bourbon!

One year ago: Butternut Squash and Black Bean Enchiladas
Two years ago: Caramel-Filled Chocolate Cookies
Three years ago: Pumpkin Caramel Coffee Cake

Eggnog Bread
Servings: 4 mini loaves
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups eggnog
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1/2 cup butter melted
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon rum extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 3.4 oz package instant french vanilla or vanilla pudding
For the glaze:
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • Enough eggnog to make a glaze to drizzle over bread
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease bottom of bread pan or mini loaf pans.
  2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg. Set aside.
  3. Beat eggs, add sugar, eggnog, butter, rum and vanilla extract.
  4. Add the flour mixture to the wet mixture and mix well.
  5. Add the instant pudding and blend.
  6. Pour into greased mini loaf pans. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes. Remove and cool completely on a wire rack before glazing.
To make the glaze:
  1. Whisk together the powdered sugar and eggnog until you get a good consistency. Drizzle or pour over breads.