Saturday, January 08, 2011

Easy. Or not?

I was all revved up after posting the first one the other night.  The next day I realized that 365 things were not going to be easy to come up with, and that by putting the pressure of 365 new ideas on myself I was defeating the entire purpose!  So, I've been mulling again.

SO the past few days I have:

  • Spent 15 minutes doing nothing but loving the cat. My parents' cat is living with us while they are on their church mission.  He chose us, and he really is a remarkable cat, almost more dog-like!  I love just loving with him, and we had a blissful & purring, though fur-filled, time together!
  • Ate another clementine, just because it really appealed to me more than anything else that was available!
  • Purchased 2 boxes of my favorite cereal so that, in addition to the clementines, I have a go-to, low calorie, tasty snack instead of the leftover Christmas candy and fried Crispitos at the Short Stop every morning!
  • And as a bonus, I bypassed the brown pop Friday morning. I thought it didn't even sound that good.  However, I did drink a can poured over ice later in the day, and it was just as delicious as I remembered!  LOL

The getting-off-the-brown-pop headaches have begun, and they are absolutely horrendous, as bad as any migraine I've ever had.  But now that I've begun the journey, it is too important to turn back.  I'll suffer through for now, and see where I am in a few weeks.

In conceiving this blog, I wanted it to be a record of my journey, but I also have a hankering to be one of those amazing food bloggers like Vanilla Garlic, Simply Recipes, and Elaine Baker's Pastry Playground.  So I decided that I'd begin posting a recipe here and there, both to save the blog when my simple things are just ho hum, and also to begin building my skills as a food blogger and story teller.  I hope to be able to show some recipes off the beaten path, but also share some old favorites that come to me through my family over the years.

Tonight I've chosen a comfort recipe, slightly modified from the Southern Belle herself, Paula Deen.  I follow what she does pretty closely, partly because my husband is from the South and enjoys the food, but also because she makes it so common-sensical.  This is by no means a low calorie dish, so if you're after that, forget this!  It's straight comfort food.  I've never even made it without real butter and don't know how margarine would affect the flavor or texture.  We actually had this twice in the past couple months in lieu of pumpkin pie; Paula herself says you won't pumpkin pie again after this - you'll have to make it and be the judge!

Pumpkin Pie Gooey Butter Cake

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease or spray a 9 x 13 baking pan.

1 dry cake mix (I usually use spice flavor for this version; white or yellow work as well)
1/2 c. (1 stick) butter, melted
1 egg

Mix well, press into baking pan.

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. (1 stick) butter, melted
3 eggs
1 15 oz. can pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
1 1/2 T. pumpkin pie spice
1 lb. powdered confectioners sugar

Cream butter & cream cheese together until fluffy, add eggs and beat well.  Add pumpkin puree and spice, incorporate completely.  Add sugar last and scrape down sides of mixer bowl while beating into a fluffy consistency.

Pour filling over crust.  Bake for 40 - 50 minutes, until center is set.  Serve warm or cold, with whipped cream.

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