Naughty & Nice Holiday Recipes

Hey there! I wrote a guest post for sweet Maryam at Pamplemousse1983 blog. Make sure you stop by her adorable blog and say hello.  I kind of like this guest blogging thing.  It’s f-u-n.  I decided to share the post with you guys and gals as well.  Happy Thanksgiving!! There’s  a lot to be happy about…I promise.  Below you will find the post (in case you hadn’t figured that out by now.)

{Daniel Davis Photography}

Hello! It’s Laura Elizabeth here from Sunshine and StarlightMaryam was kind enough to let me share a couple of my newest favorite holiday recipes for you to enjoy!  In true holiday fashion, I have a naughty and a nice treat.  Be warned, the first is not to be eaten while watching the waist line.  However, the second will help get rid of that guilty feeling you have after the 5th piece of grandma’s apple pie.  Oh man, I’m getting hungry just thinking about it. 

Perfectly Scrumptious Pumpkin Muffins (makes 2 dozen)

{from le iPhone}

Ingredients Needed
3 cups self-rising flour
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
4 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 (15 ounce) can of pumpkin
cooking spray
brown sugar (to sprinkle on the top)
Optional ingredients (which I highly recommend that you add, yum):
2 cups chopped dates
1 cup chopped toasted pecans

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 
2.  If using pecans, place on cookie sheet and put in oven until toasted (about 5-8 minutes)
3.  Stir the first three ingredients together in a large bowl.  Make a hole in the middle of the mixture to pour other ingredients. 
4.  In a different bowl, stir together the eggs, oil, and pumpkin. 
5.  Add to dry ingredients, stirring just until it all turns a nice shade of orange.  Like this:

{le iPhone picture}

6.  If using, stir in dates and pecans.
7.  Place pretty paper cupcake cups into muffin pan.  You may spray these with cooking oil to keep from sticking, if you like.
8.  Spoon batter into cups and fill them about 2/3 full. 
9.  Sprinkle the tops with brown sugar.  Yes, you should taste the brown sugar just to make sure it’s safe. *wink*

{le iPhone pic}

10.  Bake at 400 degrees for 18-20 minutes.  Make sure you watch that oven because sometimes they can bake as quickly as 15 minutes.
11.  Remove from pans immediately and test to make sure they’re done!  I asked my cute mother for help on this step. 

{iPhone pic}

12.  Cool on wire racks or eat them while they’re hot.  Add butter if you’re feeling extra frisky. 
13.  Put them somewhere pretty and see how quickly they disappear!

{le iPhone pic of my dwelling area}

Tastiest Homemade Granola There Ever Was

(insert pic)

Ingredients Needed
2 cups of old fashioned oats
1/2 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup flaxseed
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup maple syrup
3 Tbs vegetable oil
1 Tbs vanilla
2 Tbs warm water

Optional ingredients:
1 cup grated coconut (from the baking section)
1 cup almonds
1 cup craisins
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
**Have fun with the optional ingredients! I usually only use coconut and craisins and it’s delicious.

1.  Heat oven to 275 degrees.
2.  Spray 9×13 pan with cooking spray.
2. Mix oats, wheat germ, salt and extra ingredients (except for dried fruit) in a bowl.
3.  Heat syrup, oil, warm water and vanilla to a simmer on medium heat. 
4.  Drizzle over oats and stir to combine.  Go ahead and enjoy the smell because I promise it will taste even better.
5.  Pour mix into prepared pan.  Squeeze mixure together to form clumps of granola.  This helps you get that granola texture.  Go ahead and clump, clump, clump. I like to imagine them as little mountains on a landscape.  No?  Alright then.
6.  Bake 30 minutes.
7.  Remove from oven and stir in dried fruit.  Bake 20-30 minutes longer until golden brown. 
8.  Watch carefully to make sure it doesn’t burn and get too crunchy.  Bake until desired texture.
9.  Cool and store 1 month in airtight container. 

**The granola can be eaten alone or along with vanilla yogurt and fresh fruit. It’s also a perfect snack to keep in your car or at the office.  Enjoy!

Hope you enjoy the tastiness! Much love to you and yours during this holiday season. 
Laura Elizabeth


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