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Dec 25, 2017

Braided Christmas Raisin Bread

Best Christmas Raisin BreadMerry Christmas, Everyone!

This is my Christmas Wreath Bread made into a braided loaf. I used the same recipe, braided it, and just tucked in the ends and baked it as a loaf. I love it so much! It’s beautifully sweet, has no butter, and it’s ready in about 2 hours. I make this braided raisin egg bread throughout the year, sometimes with just a little glaze…

Easy Recipe Raisin BreadSometimes, I leave it plain for toasting…

Easy Recipe Raisin Bread

I also made a whole wheat version, substituting one cup of whole wheat flour for one cup of white flour.

Whole Wheat Bread With RaisinsIt’s not quite as soft but still delicious and healthier.

Easy Whole Wheat Raisin BreadSo it’s not just for the holidays. My Christmas Wreath Bread recipe is so versatile, you can make it all year, in different shapes, and even whole wheat. Click here for the recipe. – Jenny Jones

Dec 22, 2017

Merry Christmas to Me

How To Make Caramel Corn

Everybody loves getting my homemade caramel corn for Christmas but this batch is for me. Why shouldn’t I give myself a Christmas present? It’s not like I would eat it all in one day! I could. But I won’t. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. 😉

I hope all of your baking turned out and I wish you all a very Merry Christmas. – Jenny Jones

Dec 16, 2017

Whole Wheat Sugar Cookies

Whole Wheat Christmas CookiesGuess what? I decided to try making my sugar cookies with whole wheat pastry flour and they turned out perfect! In fact, you will not be able to tell the difference. I wish I had tried this sooner but I only make these Christmas cookies once a year.

I used whole wheat pastry flour combined with all purpose flour and now these healthier sugar cookies, which already have half the butter and less sugar than most recipes, are even better. Since I give a lot of these as gifts, I prefer to use a cookie press – it’s so much faster and it makes smaller cookies so you can give more.

I’m not the best at adding sprinkles but I do recommend a very fine ground sugar if using a cookie press. A more coarse sugar will roll off the cookies but one that’s finely ground will stick. If you want to make my healthier Christmas sugar cookies even healthier, I hope you’ll try the whole wheat version. I even simplified the process so these homemadce sugar cookies are a breeze to make. Click here for the recipe. – Jenny Jones

Dec 10, 2017

One Pan Chicken & Veggies

Easy Chicken and Vegetable DinnerI consider this the healthiest meal I make. My one pan chicken and roasted vegetables is quick and easy and healthy. Vegetables are the lifeline to good health and roasting them brings our their sugars so the browning combined with their sweetness makes them super delicious. Then the chicken is lean and low fat because I use skinless, boneless chicken breast. The chicken provides high quality protein and all those veggies? Well, it’s like taking a vitamin pill only better because vitamins from real food are much better absorbed than any pill.

Every meal I make starts with whatever vegetables I have on hand. That’s because vegetables are loaded with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals essential to good health. Each color of veggie has its own set of benefits so when you mix and match the colors, you get a huge array of nutrients. I make roasted vegetables at least once a week, sometimes served with just a can of sardines, sometimes with pork loin, but this is my favorite way to serve them.

The chicken comes out moist and tender every time. I only use oil, salt, and pepper on it but you can add some dried herbs if you like. I just serve the chicken breast whole with a big side of roasted veggies. This may seem like a lot of roasted vegetables for two people but I can tell you that there may occasionally be a piece or two of chicken left over, but by the end of the meal, every single vegetable is gone. And if you roast sweet potatoes, they are so sweet they can even be dessert. Click here for the recipe. – Jenny Jones

Dec 9, 2017

Easy Christmas Snowball Cookies

Easy Pecan Balls RecipeMy Christmas snowball cookies look fancy but they are so easy, even an amateur cook can make them. There’s no mixer required because this recipe is so simple. You just put all the ingredients into a bowl and combine with your hands. After a brief stint in the fridge, you just shape them into balls and bake. They are actually pecan balls so you must be sure to toast the pecans first. It really adds so much more flavor to these powdered sugar cookies.

They make a beautiful presentation so I often give them as a homemade Christmas gift. But they don’t just look good. These pecan balls simply melt in your mouth and every time I serve them or gift them, people ask for the recipe. And here’s some even better news. You can make them ahead and freeze! Gotta love that: Easy make-ahead Christmas cookies!  Click here for the recipe. – Jenny Jones

Dec 1, 2017

Your Photos Here (December)

I love seeing my recipes being made all over the world.  I hope you’ll share where you are from and please send your photo to: YourPhotos@JennyCanCook.com

BUNNY MADE SOFT RYE ROLLS FROM MY SIMPLE WHITE BREAD

“Hi Jenny,  This year my family decided to have a traditional Czech style Christmas.  However, rather than making rye bread, I opted to use your recipe for Simple White Bread (with egg), to make Soft Rye Rolls.  I used half “bread flour” and half “medium rye flour.”  I also let the rolls rise an extra 10 mins.  To finish, I mixed a whole egg with 1 tablespoon of water as an egg wash to brush over the tops, then sprinkled the rolls with caraway seed.  Delicious  Soft and tender with the taste of rye.  I just can’t say enough about your Simple White Bread recipe.  Not only has it produced beautiful bread time after time, but my variations on the recipe have all turned out well.  Thanks again! ~ Bunny (in Chicago)”

~ They look great and thanks for sharing the details of your variation. ~ jenny

DALILA MADE MY CHRISTMAS WREATH BREAD

“Hi Jenny! 😃  I made your CHRISTMAS WREATH BREAD and it came out FABULOUS!! 🌟 I used one cup of fruit-cake mix instead of the raisins in the sweet bread. Let me tell you this sweet bread is wonderful, I can snack on it all day long….LOL!  I plan on making this fabulous bread again without the glaze, I like the idea of having it as toast in the morning. I’m also thinking this sweet bread will make a very tasty French toast. Thank you again for sharing your recipes with us Ms. Jenny! Happy Baking!  🙂🎄A very Merry Christmas to you and yours!!! 🎄”

~ Looks yummy. Thank you for the lovely photos and all the best for 2018. ~ jenny

JACALYN MADE MY NO KNEAD BREAD & PIZZA

“✨ 2 Hours To Fabulous No Knead Bread ✨ Thank You Jenny 💕”

~ I may have to try your veggie pizza. Thank you and have a wonderful Christmas. ~ jenny

“This Pizza Dough Stands Up to Two Pounds Of Steamed Broccoli & Spinach & Diced Can Tomatoes 🍅 Onions, Low Fat Cottage Cheese and Mozzarella Sauce. With a Beautiful Crust ! Jenny You Are A Gem 💎! Thank You, Jacalyn. All the above Vegatables were subject to
paper towel drying. There were no Vegetables Injured during Process!”

DIANE MADE MY FASTER NO KNEAD BREAD

“Thanks so much Jenny you have delighted me and my family with your wonderful recipes made simple. Attached is a photo of your crunchy bread. I used herbs, garlic, onion powder and parmesan cheese. So delicious our family favourite! I made all this bread in one day and gave it as Christmas gifts to my family. Merry Christmas Jenny 🎄”

~ All in one day? That is truly inspiring. Merry Christmas back to you! . ~ jenny

JODY MADE MY BRAIDED CINNAMON BREAD

“Look what I made!  It’s amazing, Jenny!  I added a few ground pecans in the cinnamon mixture because Hubby likes nuts.  Thank you for another perfect recipe.  You’re so nice.”

~ Those tunnels look good! Thank you for your photo. ~ jenny

JACALYN MADE MY POLISH DONUTS & PIZZA

“Dear Jenny, Photos below of Polish Donuts with Blackberry Jam. The Pizza I have made twice. So good to have healthy recipes. Fat a Conscience Wonders! I have Crusty No Knead buns in! Busy day here Baked Apple Pie. Recording 🎶  Screenwriting a Funny True Life Comedy. Abram Band is always busy. Wishing you and yours a Blessed Merry Christmas 🎄  And a New Year pouring out Goodness  from All Directions ✨ Always Warm Regards, Jacalyn Perriello.”

~ Thank you for the great photos – they both look wonderful! ~ jenny“Pepperoni, Turkey, Spinach, Onions, Tomatoes, Black Olive Pesto Pizza. Thank you 😊 So Much! Always Thankful.”

JUDI MADE MY FASTER NO KNEAD BREAD

“My first attempt at making your faster no knead bread!”

~ Well that’s a lot better than MY first attempt. Love the sesame seeds!” ~ jenny

BUNNY MADE MY BUTTERMILK BISCUITS…

“Dear Jenny, I’m having a wonderful time trying your recipes as the snow continues to pile up outside. No running to the corner store for bread, thanks to you.  My newest adventure, hot buttery BISCUITS.   I followed your recipe for “Buttermilk Biscuits” to a T, with only a couple small adjustments.  Rather than rolling the dough out once, I folded the dough into 3rds, rolling it out twice more, to help create layers (like they do for puff pastry).  I raised the oven heat to 475 for extra spring, and put these 3 inch biscuits into the oven without any glaze.  Only after baking did I brush them with melted butter.

Oh my, OINK! OINK!  Everyone was pigging out on your wonderful biscuits.    (Next time, instead of using buttermilk, I think I will use milk and add pickle juice to it  — then stuff the baked biscuits with ham as a traveling sandwich).  Thank you for another great recipe, Jenny; and the applause of my family.  ~ Bunny in Chicago”

~ You’re a creative baker. Thanks so much for sharing. ~ jenny

… AND MY SIMPLE WHITE BREAD (with egg)

“Dear Jenny, I love it when leftovers and recipes do double duty; so I wanted to share. (I hope you don’t mind me sending you my variation). With a bit of leftover mashed potatoes, dried dill and dried minced onion, I turned your Simple White Bread (with egg) into one of those gourmet, sandwich breads.

First, I added 2 1/4 tsps. of dried dill to the dry ingredients in Step 1.  Then, I added 1 Tabl. of dried, minced onion to the milk in Step 2, letting the onions soak for a few mins, before warming the milk to the proper temperature in the microwave.  Then, just after Step 3, I added between 2/3 cup and 3/4 cup of microwave-warmed, leftover, mashed potatoes (prepared with milk and butter), to the dough and mixed it in well  before adding the final 1/4 cup of flour in step 4.

After baking, I brushed the loaf with melted butter and  let the bread completely cool before slicing. The wait was interminable, as I was pretty excited — never having made potato, onion or dill bread before.  It came out incredibly moist, tender and flavorful.  So delicious. The surface of the bread is not super smooth due to the minced onions, but worth adding them.  My loaf came out darker on top than your original Simple White Bread recipe , but brushing the top with butter makes it soft — just perfect for sandwiches.  (Perhaps I should have covered it with foil, earlier).   Thank you Jenny.  I wouldn’t have had the nerve to try this if your Simple White Bread (with egg) recipe wasn’t practically foolproof. ~ Bunny (in Chicago, IL)”

~ Your combination sounds delicious. Thanks for sharing the details for everyone. (Luv Chi-town!) ~ jenny

Nov 29, 2017

Homemade Food Gifts for Christmas

Best Food Gifts for ChristmasI’ve been giving homemade treats as Christmas gifts for years. It’s easy to buy gift cards but taking time to make something for a friend or family member is more meaningful and always brings a big smile. Making someone homemade caramel corn or cookies or granola bars gives them something they can not buy anywhere because nothing store bought will ever taste as good as homemade.

The best homemade gifts are ones that travel well and keep well. That’s why I choose caramel corn, sugar cookies, granola bars, and biscotti. Everyone’s favorite is my caramel corn and if you’ve ever tasted this homemade caramel corn, you’ll see why – it’s absolutely fantastic!

Granola bars are the next most requested gift, again because you can’t buy a granola bar anywhere that even comes close to how good these are. Biscotti is a more exotic and unexpected gift because it takes more work to make these Italian cookies but my recipe for double chocolate almond biscotti will make a coffee lover very, very happy. They are so delicious!

Sugar cookies are not an unusual gift but my recipe uses less butter and less sugar than most and these festive holiday cookies simply melt in your mouth. Nothing store bought will ever taste as good. I can’t wait to start making all of these holiday gifts. Some will be mailed and others delivered in person. If you want to give and receive joy this Christmas, I hope you’ll consider giving some homemade treats as gifts. But be prepared: They will ask for them again next year! Click below for the recipes. – Jenny Jones

Homemade Caramel Corn

Healthier Christmas Sugar Cookies

Granola Bars

Double Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Filed Under: Holiday
1 Comment
Nov 26, 2017

Have Some Crudite

Colorful Crudite Did you eat too much turkey? Is that second piece of pumpkin pie still haunting you? Have some crudite.

Most of us probably didn’t eat enough vegetables over Thanksgiving weekend. Green bean casserole is mostly casserole and not a lot of beans. And aren’t candied yams really a dessert? Thanksgiving dinner is a great tradition and I enjoyed mine just like everyone else, as well as the leftovers but there’s a big container of fresh vegetables in my fridge right now. I always keep crudite on hand but I made extra today.

Vegetables are our lifeline to good health and when you have colorful veggies ready as a snack, you’re doing a lot of good for your long term health. I mix the colors because each color has its own health benefit: yellow & orange for eyes and lungs, red for memory and immunity, green for bones and teeth, purple & blue for aging and blood pressure and that’s just naming a few. Eating a variety of colored vegetables will provide a variety of different antioxidants that can help keep us well.

Eating vegetables every day, both fresh and cooked, is like an insurance policy for your health. And fresh crudite is not only appealing to look at, it’s delicious.  Keep and container of fresh veggies in your fridge and see how fast they disappear! – Jenny Jones

Nov 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving

Wishing all my American friends and visitors a Happy Thanksgiving. And for all those committed to cooking all day for friends and family, like I am… good luck! It’s a challenge but very satisfying once you’re all done and putting away leftovers for tomorrow.

I already made my simple stuffing, gravy, cranberries, and pumpkin pie yesterday. Today it’s the turkey, mashed potatoes, and green beans and of course real whipped cream for the pie. My best wishes to everyone for a wonderful Thanksgiving.

I have much to be thankful for and never take my good fortune for granted. – Jenny Jones

Filed Under: Holiday
3 Comments
Nov 14, 2017

Fast No Knead Dinner Rolls

Crusty Artisan RollsJust in time for Thanksgiving, here is an even faster way to make my original crusty rolls. And you can make them ahead and freeze. They freeze beautifully and you can re-crisp, directly from freezer to oven, in minutes. They are even more crusty when you freeze and reheat!

The original version takes 4 hours but this one is ready in half the time – TWO hours! Using more yeast and hot water, it’s the fastest way I know to make these fabulous dinner rolls. It’s important that your oven be preheated to 450° F and my oven takes 35 minutes to reach 450. It’s really best to use an oven thermometer to make sure your oven it hot enough as these rolls depend on the first blast of high heat to puff up and rise.

This dough is sticky so it may help to see how to shape the rolls by watching the video attached to my original version of No Knead Crusty Rolls.

These fabulous artisan rolls can be made ahead and nicely re-crisped the next day or better still, make, cool, and freeze and just reheat by placing them directly on the oven rack, preheated to 325 °F, for 10-12 minutes. I’m always excited when I can find a way to make something easier and faster, especially when it’s homemade bread. They’re not just dinner rolls – I had them for breakfast today.

So there are three ways to make these crusty rolls. One is my original 4-hour recipe. Two is the overnight version where you use cold water and let the dough sit out overnight. And third, this new, fastest way ever to make no knead crusty rolls – in two hours!  Click here for the recipe. – Jenny Jones

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