- See more at: http://blogtimenow.com/blogging/automatically-redirect-blogger-blog-another-blog-website/#sthash.FAKOYWxZ.dpuf Simply Rice and Beans: November 2013

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Oatmeal Craisin Cookies with Chocolate and Coconut

If you love oatmeal, cranberries, chocolate chips and coconut, why not make a cookie with everything in the mix.  I love, love these cookies, specially the coconut. You can see the cranberries and the coconuts in the cookies.

Eat them right out of the oven when the chocolate chips are still melted.  These are really delicious, highly recommend this recipe.


3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup all fashioned oats
1/2 cup shredded coconut 
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup dried cranberries-Craisins

Preheat oven to 350 Degrees F
Line baking sheet with parchment paper

In a medium bowl mix the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Stir to mix, set aside.  In your mixing bowl combine the butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar, beat on med-high until smooth.  Beat in the egg and vanilla until incorporated. Add in the oats coconut, chocolate chips and cranberries, mix well.

Drop scoops of dough, about 1 tablespoon into the prepare baking sheet about 2 inches apart.  Bake for 12 minutes until set and golden, rotating the pans halfway through baking. Let cool on pan for about 2 minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely. 

Source: Very Culinary.com

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies

My favorite cookies are Oatmeal Raisin Cookies and my husband's favorite cookies are Peanut Butter.  So, today I decided to make him some Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies.  He is going to be a happy husband. 

These are really easy to make.  Make these ahead of time this holiday and enjoy them with your family.

The cookies have a nice soft, but crunchy texture and the filling is super creamy.  Just Perfect!!

Cookie Ingredients

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup peanut butter, creamy or chunky
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Peanut Butter Filling Ingredients

4 tbsp of unsalted butter
1/4 cup confectioners sugar
3/4 cup peanut butter
1/2 tsp salt

For the Cookies

Preheat oven to 350 Degrees F

Place oven rack in the center and line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.

In the bowl of your mixer beat together the butter, peanut butter and sugars until light and fluffy.  Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat to combine.  In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.  Add to the peanut butter mixture and beat to combine.

Take one tablespoon of batter and place on cookie sheet 2 inches between each cookie mount.  Press the dough with the back of the fork that has been dipped in granulated sugar. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the cookies are light brown around the edges.  Cool completely on a wire rack.

For the Filling

Beat all ingredients in your mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on medium until smooth.  

To Assemble

Take one peanut butter cookie and spread about 1 tbsp of the filling onto the flat side of the cookie. Top with a second cookie, flat side down to make a sandwich. If not serving right away, cover and refrigerate.

Source: Joy of Baking and Martha Stewart.com

Monday, November 25, 2013

Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies with Pecans

During the holidays I like to bake lots of cookies.  Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies with Pecans is one of our favorite.  During the holidays when we are just hanging out, playing board games I like to bake a batch.  Double the recipe because these will go really fast.

I like to add pecans, but you can add walnuts or just omit the nuts completely.

The cookies are soft but firm.  The addition of the pecans makes the cookies even better.  Enjoy with a nice cup of milk. 


2 1/4 cups unsifted flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 cups Ghirardelli milk chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans-optional

Preheat oven to 375 Degrees F

Stir flour with baking soda and salt; set aside.  Beat butter with sugar and brown sugar at medium speed until creamy.  add vanilla and eggs, one at a time, mixing on low speed until incorporated.

Gradually blend dry mixture into creamed mixture.  Stir in chocolate chips and nuts.  Drop by tablespoon onto ungreased cookie sheets.  Bake for 9-11 minutes or until golden brown.

Source: Ghirardelli.com

Saturday, November 23, 2013

The Week in Review

Happy Saturday!!

1.  Had a great week at home.  I finished decorating the inside of the house.  My Christmas tree is up.  I turn it on every night.  I love the holidays and I like to enjoy my lights and decorations as much as possible.  We started decorating outside and we are almost done.   Have you started your decorations, if not what are you waiting for.

2.  I finished my shopping for the Thanksgiving dinner.  I'm looking forward to cooking and eating everything.
Did you finished your shopping?  What's on your menu.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Happy Hour: Coquito-Puerto Rican Eggnog

Now that I have made Coquito, let the holidays begin.  I started my morning making coquito.  I wanted to make it for the weekend, and make enough to last for a few days.  Coquito is one of those drinks you must have in your refrigerator for the holidays, and there is nothing better than making you own.

There are many recipes out there, so I reviewed a few and came up with this recipe.  I made a couple of batches, one with rum, and one without for those of us that like virgin drinks. 

You don't have to add the egg yolks, but adding the yolks will make the coquito thicker.

This is what you will end up with after you are done.  Plenty to last you for a few days. 


20 cloves
4 cinnamon sticks
2 cups of water
2 small pieces of fresh ginger
3-15 ounce cans of Coco Lopez (cream of coconut)
2-12 ounce cans of evaporated milk
1-14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
1-13.5 ounce can of coconut milk
4 egg yolks-optional
2 tsp ground cinnamon 
1/4 ground nutmeg
2 cups of rum-optional

In a sauce pan boil together the water, cloves, cinnamon sticks and ginger.  Then, simmer for about 15 minutes.  Once done set aside to cool. Take out the cloves, cinnamon sticks and ginger. 

I like to make the coquito in two separate batches.  In your mixer add 1/2 of the ginger, cinnamon and cloves water, 1 1/2 can of Coco Lopez, 1 can of evaporated milk, 1/2 can of the sweetened condensed milk, 1/2 can of coconut milk, and 2 egg yolks.  Mix for a few minutes, until well combined. Add 1 tsp of cinnamon,  1/8 ground nutmeg, then add 1 cup of rum.  Mix for a least two minute to combine all of the ingredients.  Repeat the process all over again for your second batch.

Refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Shake well before serving.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Gingerbread Cake

I wanted to bake something I had not baked before.  I was looking through many of my books and there were so many recipes I wanted to do.  Then, I came across this recipe for Gingerbread Cake.

This recipe is perfect for this time of year.  As it bakes, it fills the house with such a great smell of cinnamon, ginger and cloves.  It makes the house warm and cozy. 

This is a perfect way to end my night, with a  piece of gingerbread cake and a big cappuccino.  The cake tastes just like ginger and it's super moist.  Great recipe choice!


2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 eggs
zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup of unsulphured molasses
1 cup milk

Preheat oven 350 Degrees F

Place rack in center of oven.  Butter and flour a 9 inch round or square pan with 2 inch sides.

In a bowl combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves.  In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat together the butter and the sugar until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs, one at a time beating well after each addition.  Add the lemon zest and molasses and beat to combine.  Scrape the side of the bowl as needed.

Add the dry ingredients and milk, alternately, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Beat just until incorporated. 

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with an offset spatula. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes before removing from cake pan. 

Source: Joy of Baking

Monday, November 18, 2013


Eating a bowl of Oatmeal in the morning is the perfect way to start your day. I grew up eating cornmeal, farina, grits, but Oatmeal was always my favorite. My mom made it creamy and full of flavor. I like to add cinnamon and cloves to the oatmeal, it gives it a fragrant, sweet and warm taste.

I enjoy eating oatmeal anytime of the day. I love to eat it on those cold winter days, sitting by my fireplace under a blanket, relaxing in front of my television. 

Oatmeal is not only delicious, but it's really good for you.


1 1/2 cup old fashioned oatmeal
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup evaporated milk
3/4 cup water
5 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon
8-10 cloves
2 sticks of cinnamon
1 pinch of salt

In a sauce pan on medium heat add the whole milk, evaporated milk, water, sugar, ground cinnamon, cloves, cinnamon sticks, vanilla and salt.  Bring to a boil then add the oatmeal.  Cook and stir for about 15 minutes or until the oats are cook through.  Before serving make sure to take out the cloves and cinnamon sticks and discard.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

The Week in Review

Happy Saturday!!

1.  Last weekend I had my sister, nephew and great nephew visiting from SC.  My sister and I decided to make Pasteles.  Pasteles are wrapped bananas, and root vegetables stuffed meat pastries, traditionally served during Thanksgiving and Christmas in Puerto Rico.  A Puerto Rican house must have these for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years.

2.  I've gone over my menu for Thanksgiving, and I have my list of dishes.  Here it goes, Turkey, Ham, Pork Roast, Rice with Pigeon Peas, Mac and Cheese, Stuffing, Sweet Potato Casserole with Marshmallow, Meatballs, Stuffed Shells, Potato Salad and Pasteles.  My husband and I are having company for Thanksgiving, and so I go all out. What's on your menu?

Friday, November 15, 2013

Happy Hour: Blue Rain Cocktail

It's Friday!!

This is a busy weekend for a lot of people.  Lot's of shopping to do before Thanksgiving.  Take this evening to relax and enjoy a nice drink.  This Blue Rain Cocktail, it's just the perfect drink for that.  Not only is this drink smooth, its very pretty.  Impress your friends and family during the holidays with this fancy drink.

Enjoy Responsibly!!


1/2 shot grenadine
1/2 shot peach schnapps
1/2 shot white rum
3 count lemonade
3 count sweet & sour mix
1/2 shot blue curacao

Fill a collins glass 3/4 full with ice.  Add grenadine and peach schnapps and white rum into glass.  Then fill with sweet and sour and lemonade and add the blue curacao. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013


My sister came to visit me and I had mentioned to her that we should do some Pasteles for the upcoming holidays.  Pasteles are wrapped bananas, and root vegetables stuffed meat pastries, traditionally served during Thanksgiving and Christmas in Puerto Rico.  Some other countries have their own version of them.

We went to a local farmers market, where I usually find everything I need.  Making pasteles reminds me of my mom.  My mom used to make pasteles to sell.  There were times when she made over 1000 pasteles.  Until this day, I'm not sure how she did that, because making pasteles, it's a lot of work.  She at least had the masa machine (batter machine), that made it easier. 

There are many pasteles recipes out there.  This is my way of making them.  You can add or adjust to your liking.  But, let me just say this is a fantastic recipe with great results.  I suggest you make this recipe as it is written.   Make sure to read the recipe before you start.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Cornmeal Tortas

Cornmeal Tortas is a Puerto Rican fritter made from cornmeal usually eaten for breakfast with a nice cup of coffee.  I grew up eating cornmeal tortas and flour tortas.  My mom used to make the best.

My nephews and nieces love them too. My husband enjoys eating them but with a little bit of maple syrup.  Sometimes late at night I get the cravings and I just have to make a batch.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Onion and Pepper Frittata

This morning I wanted to have a meatless frittata.  I had a heavy eating weekend and I really didn't want to have anything too heavy for breakfast.  This Onion and Pepper Frittata is really easy to make, and you can add anything you want to it.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake

I found this recipe for Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake  a while ago.  I read the recipe a couple of times as I always do before I decide whether the recipe is a good one or not.  I hate to try a  recipe and not turn out the way I was expecting.

Cheesecake is one of my weaknesses.  One of my favorite places is the Cheesecake Factory, and there are about 6 within a few miles from my house.   Their selection of cheesecakes is mind blowing.  They have over 30 different cheesecakes in every flavor.  One of my favorite cheesecakes there is the Pumpkin Cheesecake, but it's only available during this time of year.

So, when I found this recipe I was really excited, because that means I can have it anytime of the year.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

The Week in Review

Happy Saturday!!

1.  Blog hit over 700 "Likes" thank you to all of my followers.  I'm happy and hope that you are all in the kitchen cooking away.

2.  This week all of the recipes were from my book selection, Big Book of Home Cooking.  This book has really easy recipes that any home cook can put together.  The first recipe was Buttermilk Biscuits.  These biscuits were nice and crusty but soft inside. Perfect for the holidays, specially for Christmas morning breakfast.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Happy Hour: Raspberry Limoncello Cocktail

Weekend is here again and it seems that the days are just flying by.  Soon enough Thanksgiving will be here and then Christmas and New Years.  Lot's of planning to do, from the menu, to who's coming to visit, just too much to worry about.

So why not have a drink to end this long day.  It's Friday and it's time to take off your shoes and relax.  This is a refreshing drink that will definitely help you unwind.

Add some extra raspberries on top for garnish.  Enjoy!!


1 lemon cut in quarters
4 basil leaves
6-8 raspberries
1/2 tsp superfine sugar
1/2 ounce limoncello
1 ounce Vodka

Muddle 2 pieces of the lemon, basil, and raspberries in a glass, until well mashed.  Fill glass with ice.  Add limoncello, vodka and sugar. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Top off with champagne. 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Arroz con Pollo (Chicken and Rice)

Arroz con Pollo (Chicken and Rice) with a side of Habichuelas Guisadas (Stewed Beans), brings back so many memories of my mom.  I grew up with a mom that used to cook seven days a week.  Not only did she cook dinner, but she also made breakfast and lunch.

I remember as a kid, waking up and having these big breakfast, and lunch was always a full meal that sometimes included rice.  I have nothing but great memories of my mom's cooking.  Everything she made had this amazing taste.

Arroz con Pollo was a dish that everyone loved in the house.  She always made a big pot and leftovers were even better the next day.  I learned a lot from her, however, I know there are many dishes that I wish I had recipes for.  

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Cinnamon Pumpkin Pancakes

Woke up this morning craving some home made pancakes. I made these Cinnamon Pumpkin Pancakes and they are delicious.  If you like pumpkin like I do, you are really going to enjoy these.

The Apple Cider Syrup makes these pancakes even better and the pumpkin flavor comes through with a nice cinnamon taste. The apple cider syrup and the pumpkin pancakes are just an amazing combination.  I highly recommend this recipe.  You are going to be in love!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Simple Scottish Shortbread

While driving to an appointment today I was just amazed at the beauty of Fall.  The trees have these bright orange and yellow colors that are just so beautiful.  I love taking photos of my little boy Cayman (dog) and I want to take him to a park to take pictures of him while playing and running around with the leaves. 

Not only are the trees all changing colors, but the temperature seems to be dropping even more now.  Today, even though the sun was out, it felt colder.

I came home wanting to have some hot chocolate, but I needed some cookies to go with it.  I made these Simple Scottish Shortbread cookies.  When I found the recipe, on this weeks book selection, Big Book of Home Cooking, I knew these would be perfect.  Simple and super easy to put together and bake.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Buttermilk Biscuits

Good Morning!!  The best thing about breakfast for me are the home made Buttermilk Biscuits.  There is a big difference on the biscuits you get at the supermarket and these.  

On the weekend my husband usually makes breakfast for us, specially on Sundays right after church.  I figure, let me make the biscuits and let him make the eggs and bacon.

This recipe is from the book I selected this week, Big Book of Home Cooking by Gooseberry Patch.  This recipe is super easy and the biscuits are delicious.  They are crunchy on the outside, but nice and soft in the inside.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

The Week in Review

 Happy Saturday!!

1. Had a fantastic week. Halloween was not what I expected.  My husband and I bought so much candy, expecting a big turn out, but only about 10 kids came by the house.  I figure I can use some of the candy for baking and the rest I'm sure will disappear over the holidays when my nephews come to visit.

2.  I'm looking forward to Thanksgiving.  I'm actually already working on my menu.  This year I want to add a couple of new dishes to the list.  I'm going over my books and magazines trying to figure out what I'm making.  What are those favorite dishes you make during Thanksgiving?  Are you making your desserts from scratch?  I always do, pies, cheesecakes, flan, cookies...I go all out. 

Friday, November 1, 2013

Happy Hour: Pomegranate Cosmo

It's Friday!!!  have a relaxing drink this evening after a long day at work.  Try this Pomegranate Cosmopolitan, you won't be disappointed.  This recipe will be nice for the holidays, specially Christmas.  The pomegranate gives the drink this beautiful champagne color.