16 November 2014

Holiday Recipe: Easy Caramel Pumpkin Cake



Advocate staff photo by CATHERINE THRELKELD  --  Caramel Pumpkin Cake is an easy dessert perfect for Halloween and Thanksgiving.
2TheAdvocate photo: Catherine Threlkeld 


From Denny:  Want a simple dessert that simplifies your life while cooking the Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner?  Even if family and friends help bring their favorite dishes to contribute to the holiday feast it's always a good idea to have a dessert that is simple to put together and cooks itself while you are distracted by other preparations, waiting to go on stage and show off. :)  

This cake is full of melted caramel candy and Heath toffee brickle bits complementing the autumnal pumpkin flavor.  This dessert texture is a moist pudding cake that friends well with a happy dollop of freshly whipped heavy cream or whipped topping or just a sprinkle of the toffee brickle bits - you decide.  

When I serve desserts like this I offer my guests their choice of toppings as they enjoy getting involved.  Holidays are often when I try out new recipes.  Since I value their opinions my guests enjoy morphing into the all important taste tasters to evaluate the recipes, determining if  the new ideas survive to see another holiday gathering.  It's all great fun and gets everyone involved to express their likes and dislikes, helping to perfect a recipe.  Sometimes, all a recipe needs is a better way to serve it, like a good topping.

This little pudding cake dessert gem cooks in a slow cooker on High for two hours, giving you plenty of time to serve the dinner before the crowd starts breaking into the table of desserts.  This dessert is assembled at the last minute into individual dessert dishes so you can serve as little or as much as your guest prefers.  Besides, this dessert cake gives you a chance to use those tiny custard or individual flan dishes some older relative gave you but you just didn't know what to do with them.  Enjoy!...

Santa Diva Cat Round Ornament

Get a laugh and make sure your family kitty has her own Christmas ornament to grace the tree with her awesome presence! Check out Diva Cat adorned with her Santa hat just in time for the season.  Design also available: in other styles of ornaments, phone cases, makeup mirrors and greeting cards!  Santa Diva Cat sports her divine image: on plenty of mugs, teapots, cocktail plates and platters.

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15 November 2014

Holiday Recipe: Appetizer Crabmeat Cheesecake With Gruyere and Mascarpone

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER MCCLELLAND --  Gourmet Galley, crabmeat cheesecake
2TheAdvocate photo: HEATHER MCCLELLAND 

From Denny:  This easy recipe is a big hit during the holidays or any big gathering!  Crabmeat is expensive, especially fresh.  What is great about this recipe is that a mere one pound of fresh crabmeat can feed a crowd because this rich recipe is set up as an appetizer.  

Fresh crabmeat is always the most tasty but if all you can procure is frozen then go ahead and use it.  Just know that if you use frozen crabmeat it may get a bit watery on the top of the cheesecake near the end of the baking time.  So, if that should happen then just pour off any of the clear liquid that might form.  

If you happen to have any leftover crabmeat cheesecake you can warm it the next day, serving a small piece with a large green salad on the side!  Bon Appetit!


Santa Music Earring Circle Charm

Santa Music Earring Circle Charm

Santa loves the music of the season!

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03 November 2014

A Truth Journal: VOTE! Political Fails, Missteps, Midterms, ISIS, NFL: Late Nite Jokes





A Truth Journal: VOTE! Political Fails, Missteps, Midterms, ISIS, NFL: Late Nite Jokes: From Denny:  Make sure you VOTE! to get your voice heard above the lying political campaign ads.  If we want to change out our politicians who refuse to attend to the needs of the American people and get this country going again, then VOTE! even if you did not intend to vote until 2016 for the presidential campaign.

Make sure you have a valid I.D. like a driver's license or other state issued I.D.  Republican legal teams will be out in full force nationally to challenge voters at the polls, intent upon throwing out millions of votes or preventing millions of voters from being able to exercise their right to vote at all.

Even here in Louisiana the Republican brand is so disliked by voters that the candidates refuse to acknowledge they are Republicans on all their yard signs and political literature.  The public may be almost as angry with the Democrats but less so than with the Republicans who are too lazy to work but 13 percent of the time in Congress.  Why are we paying these lazy fools $168,000 annually anyway?  Part time work should be rewarded with part time paychecks and no health care plans since they are temporary workers.  Works for me.

Meanwhile, enjoy the political jokes, poking our most greedy and clueless politicians.  Get out and VOTE! and create a tsunami to overwhelm Congress with how the middle class wants real change and real change now...


Holiday Message Greeting Cards (pk Of 10)


The perfect holiday season message: "may you have a happy, merry holiday season"
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Funny Normal Is Boring 15 Inch Laptop Sleeve


Check out this funny saying promoting the human race!
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A Christmas Post: Holiday Recipe: Fig and Toasted Almond Scones


Recipe photo
Photo: King Arthur Flour

A Christmas Post: Holiday Recipe: Fig and Toasted Almond Scones: From Denny:  Autumn is here - and so is daylight savings time this Sunday when we "fall backward" one hour - so don't forget to set your clocks back one hour!

For some reason I've been enjoying the vegan scones over at Whole Foods the past couple of weeks now that the weather has cooled.  So, that sent me on The Scone Recipe Chase to see what is out there in recipe database land.  Found these little autumnal gems over at King Arthur Flour.

Figs are quite popular here in Louisiana where many a backyard grows a fig tree.  Almonds are popular in California where they supply the nation! This is the time of year when the nation's nut orchards are releasing their bountiful harvest of pecans (Louisiana and Texas), almonds, walnuts and macadamias so we are all tempted to start our holiday baking early! At least I believe that's their marketing strategy to sell more nuts. :)

Scones are an easy way to try out some fruit and nut combinations to see how the family and friends enjoy the idea.  While I love my blueberry and lemon scones of the summer it's time for something different for the fall season so we wanted to try these fig and almond scones at our house.  Of course, if figs or almonds are not your preference, know that you can always try figs and walnuts or cranberries and almonds or whatever grabs your fancy this baking season.

Don't feel like the extra effort and time of slicing the scone dough into proper triangles?  Try the method the King Arthur Flour bakers suggest:  bake them into rounds just using 1/4 cup of dough for each scone, leaving 2 inches between them.  That amounts to the idea of a drop scone, much like a drop biscuit...

Holiday Message Potholder

Holiday Message Potholder

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Holiday Message Dinner Placemats

Holiday Message Dinner Placemats - design also available in cloth napkins, teapots, mugs, coffee travel mugs, aprons, serving trays, wine chillers, cocktail shakers, cocktail plates, cutting boards, cookie jars, flour and sugar canisters, dog food bowls, dog t-shirts, dog hoodies and much more! Visit Denny Lyon Gifts  @ CafePress.com  -  see what's new!


Holiday Message Large Serving Tray

Holiday Message Large Serving Tray

Visit Denny Lyon Gifts  @ CafePress.com  -  see what's new!

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15 October 2014

Thanksgiving: Layered Pumpkin Cheesecake


Photo provided by Betty Crocker  --  Layered Pumpkin Cheesecake will be a welcome treat any time during the holidays.



From Denny:  This is the perfect holiday table dessert!  It's so showy it's sure to impress.  Three layers of tasty goodness are the gingersnap cookie crust as it's sturdy foundation to hold the spiced pumpkin cheese layer that is marbled with a vanilla layer.

Like most big cheesecakes, this one should be baked in a springform pan, where the cake cools in the pan for several hours before you remove the sides of the pan.  If you have never used a springform pan, it's so easy it will make you laugh, definitely nothing to be intimidated about at all. 

Like any tasty cheesecake, this one is rich in calories too, so a small serving would be welcomed by most.  At a dinner party I like to cut a normal to small sized slice, placing it on one plate and then encourage couples to share so people don't have to feel guilty about busting their diet plan.  After all, the whole point of entertaining is for people to enjoy their tasty treats!...

Floral Blush Woven Blanket


Floral Blush: Enjoy wrapping up in Spring's first blush of azalea blooms to chase away the winter blues!

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