Nina’s Top 5 Halloween Treats

Since Halloween falls on my birthday month I’m usually very festive and happy around this time of the year!  I usually get into the mood but this year has been kind of hectic and I wasn’t able to make my own Halloween treats so I picked some of my favorites that you can still make in time to enjoy the holiday.  I did attempt to make some caramel apples but…let’s just say my microwave turned into a caramel nightmare so that idea was out!  Have a wonderful Happy Halloween NCJ Peeps!

♥ Nina

Pumpkin Patch Puffs from Table Spoon

 

Roasted Pumpkin Pasta from Annie’s Eats

 

Caramel Apples from Paula Deen

 

Crisp Candy-Corn Treats from Martha Stewart

 

Candy Corn Martinis from The Slow Roasted Italian

 

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Late Night Baking Party – Cheddar Chive Cornbread

The first Late Night Baking Party on Nina’s Cooking Journey was a huge success!  There were submissions from several bloggers and NCJ Peeps and I cannot thank you all enough for joining me in this weird experiment of mine.  All the recipes looked amazing and I can’t wait to try some of them myself.  I even Ustreamed during the party and got to know some of you all a little better and hopefully you got to know me.  I will definitely be hosting another party so if you have any ideas for a fun virtual party please let me know!  I wasn’t able to share all of the posts but here are some of the recipes from some of my favorite blogger friends.  Feel free to check out a few more posts from NCJ Peeps on my Facebook Page.  A big thanks to you all…you rock!

 

Banana Pumpkin Nutella Bread from Christine’s Kitchen Chronicles

 

Old Fashioned Apple Crisp with Caramel Sauce from Noshing with the Nolads

 

Strawberry Cheesecake Cupcakes from Tortillas and Honey

 

Maple Bacon Busciuts from Dixie Chik Cooks

 

Chickpea Chocolate Cupcakes from I Breath…I’m Hungry


Apple Spice Cake from Cooking with Elise

 

And finally, my contribution Cheddar Chive Cornbread.  My mom makes THE BEST cornbread from scratch and usually doesn’t deviate from her recipe.  So I was extremely surprised when she put this on the dinner table one night.  I thought it would be perfect with the Spicy Chili I made the other week and I was right.  It adds a Tex-Mex feel to a traditional southern dish.

 Ingredients

1¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup plus 3 tbsp yellow cornmeal
3 tbsp plus 2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp plus 1 tsp baking powder
1¼ tsp salt
2 large eggs
1 tbsp light corn syrup
1¼ cups buttermilk
¾ cup unsalted butter (1½ sticks), melted over low heat and set aside
½ cup sliced scallions (about ¼ inch wide)
4 oz. sharp yellow cheddar, shredded (use more if you prefer)

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
In a medium-size mixing bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.  Using a separate medium-size bowl, whisk together wet ingredients.   Slowly add wet ingredients to dry ingredients, whisking well to combine.  Add melted butter to the batter, stirring slowly to incorporate.  Finish by folding in chopped scallions and cheddar cheese.

Grease a 9-inch cast-iron skillet with 1 tablespoon of butter and then pour in batter.  Bake until edges are a little crispy and top is golden brown, about 60 minutes.

Remove from oven and place skillet on a cooling rack.  The cast iron retains its heat and will continue to cook the cornbread.  Let cool a bit before serving to allow the cornbread to set.

Recipe adapted from Garden & Gun

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Homemade Apple Pie

This recipe is very simple so feel free to improvise and add your own twist to it.  And don’t forget to post a pic of your creation!

 

Ingredients

 

1/2 cup sugar1/2 cup packed brown sugar

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

7 cups thinly sliced pared apples

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 Pastry for double-crust pie (9 inches)

1 tablespoon butter or margarine

1 egg white

Additional sugar

 

Directions

 

In a small bowl, combine sugar, flour and spices; set aside. In a large bowl, toss apples with lemon juice. Add sugar mixture; toss well to coat. Line a 9-in. pie pan with half the pastry. Place apple filling into crust; dot with butter. Roll out remaining pastry to fit top of pie. Cut a few slits in top. beat egg white until foamy; brush over pastry. Sprinkle sugar on top. Bake at 375 degrees F for 35 minutes. Increase temperature to 400 degrees F and bake 10-15 minutes more or until golden.

 

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