Category Archives: Sweets

Apple Cake


I definitely live in the age of Pinterest and have more recipes pinned than I could ever hope to try.  But sometimes tried and true is better than new.  This apple cake recipe has been in my family for generations.  (Perhaps someone reading this will be able to tell me where it came from.)  Either way, it’s really simple and always turns out perfectly.  I’m sure you and your family will enjoy it as much as mine has over the years.

Apple Cake

1 ½ cup vegetable oil
2 cups sugar
2 well beaten eggs
3 cups fresh apples – peeled and chopped (about 3 apples)
3 cups of sifted flour
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Mix in order given.  Pour into a greased and floured 9×13 pan.  Bake 1 hour at 350° Fahrenheit.  Allow to cool before slicing.



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Chewy White Chocolate Cranberry Drops

Chewy White Chocolate Cranberry Drops

These were quite the accident. While attempting to recreate a favorite from my hometown chocolate shop, I made a wrong turn. Instead of white chocolate and cranberries, I ended up with a fudgy, chewy concoction. But, it turns out, the accidents sometimes taste better than what you were aiming for in the first place.

This recipe is super easy and can be pulled together in mere minutes.


All you need is four ingredients, a bowl, wax paper, and a microwave.


First, combine 2 cups of white chocolate chips, 1 tablespoon of butter, and ½ cup of sweetened condensed milk in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring after each 30 seconds. Repeat this until the mixture is smooth.


Stir in 1 cup dried cranberries. (If you would like you can chop the cranberries into smaller pieces.)


Finally, drop tablespoons of the mixture onto wax paper. Let stand until set.


White Chocolate Cranberry Drops

2 cups white chocolate chips
1 tablespoon butter
½ cup sweetened condensed milk
1 cup dried cranberries

Combine white chocolate chips, butter, and condensed milk in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring after each 30 seconds. When the mixture is smooth, stir in the cranberries. Drop tablespoons of the mixture onto wax paper. Let stand until set.

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November 19, 2013 · 4:25 am

Chocolate Chip Cookies


This recipe defines my childhood.  The first recipe I ever made, the first recipe I ever memorized, and the recipe that made me love baking.  It’s the recipe my mother made when I had a bad day at school or when a boy broke my heart.  In college and after, it’s the recipe I used to make new friends.  Now, it’s the recipe I bring to every gathering.  This recipe for chocolate chip cookies is hands down my absolute favorite recipe.

Perhaps the sentimental value adds the most flavor to the cookies for me, but I do encourage you to give them a try.  I hope you find them just as delicious as I do.


You will need: Crisco, light brown sugar, white sugar, vanilla extract, eggs, flour, baking soda, salt, and chocolate chips.


First, combine 1 cup Crisco (in our experience it has to be Crisco.  Other shortenings don’t work as well.), ¾ cup packed light brown sugar, and ¾ cup white sugar. I recommend using an electric mixer, but as I live in the Dark Ages here in Taiwan, I mix by hand.


Next, add 1 teaspoon vanilla and 2 eggs.  Mix to combine.


Then, add the 2 ¼ cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, and 1 teaspoon salt.  The amount of flour really depends on your elevation.  At a slightly higher elevation, 2 cups of flour may work.  The dough should be stiff and mold-able when the mixing is finished.

(It helps to combine the dry ingredients first.  I cheat and lightly stir them together while they are sitting on top of the wet ingredients.  But, if you prefer, you can combine them in a separate bowl before adding the mixture to the wet ingredients.)


Finally, add in the chocolate chips.  Of course, if you want very chocolaty cookies, add more.  For less chocolate, add less.  I find about one cup of chips suits my tastes.


Make small balls using your hands or one of the cookie baller contraptions that my mother uses.  About 1 inch balls will suffice.  Place on light metal baking sheet about an inch apart to allow for spreading.


Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 7-8 minutes.  You will want them to only just start looking golden brown on the top before you take them out of the oven.  Any more than the faintest hint of golden and you will end up with burnt cookies.  Of course, if you are using an ancient counter top oven like mine, the cooking time will be much longer.

After removing the cookies from the oven, allow them to cool slightly on the pan.  Then, transfer the cookies to the countertop.  My mother swears this is the best method for cooling.

I hope that you enjoy these cookies as much as I do!

Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 cup Crisco
¾ cup light brown sugar
¾ cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.  Combine Crisco, light brown sugar, and white sugar.  Mix in eggs and vanilla.  Add flour, baking soda, and salt.  Mix until combined.  Finally, stir in chocolate chips.  Roll 1 inch dough balls and place on light metal baking sheet.  Bake until lightly golden brown, approximately 7-8 minutes.  Remove and cool on baking sheet or counter top.


Filed under Recipes, Sweets