Monday, December 1, 2014

Thankful, Cozy, & Full


Happy December!

I hope you had a blessed week and moments of making memories,
relaxing, and enjoying your blessings with the ones you love.
My week off with my family was so nice... a time that was a beautiful
reminder of how much I have to be grateful for.  I thought today I would share
a glimpse of it, mostly involving the meal we were so blessed with and
about the joys of Thanksgiving day this past Thursday.

I was away from blogging this whole week and it feels good
 to have my fingers typing again and writing :)
  I actually decided to take most of the week as a break from
 being on my computer at all and I cannot tell you what
a great feeling that was, to focus on the simple and real things, the
beauty around me- in the ever-changing leaves, the quiet moments,
 time with family, making & enjoying a delicious meal we were blessed
 to have- and to just take a rest from being on the computer since I
constantly have to be when it comes to my studies.


Some of my favorite moments this week were surely
spent in the kitchen, watching the parade from the bar as I helped
prepare the meal.  I love burning candles while we cook or
bake and a new Winter Vanilla scent, along with the very appropriate
"Be Thankful" scent, added to the perfect childlike wonder and 
coziness that is already so plentiful on this day each year.


On the stove... my Mama had potatoes going in the pot to begin
her amazing homemade mashed-potatoes recipe, and the cornbread
was cooling to be crumbled up and added to the mixing bowl for
my dressing.


There aren't a lot of things that wet my appetite more than the sounds
and smells of sauteing vegetables in butter.  It was no different Thanksgiving
morning as I started the dressing recipe and sauteed celery and onions
to be added in.

Out of the oven!
This is hands down the best dressing I have ever tasted.  Our family cannot
get enough of it and I think we would all agree that we don't even want
to try any other recipe because of how delectable, moist, and flavorful
this one is.  It is Southern-style dressing and is nothing short of heavenly.
The recipe is from Paula Deen and it's called Southern Cornbread Dressing.
It's hard to write about and look at in this photo now that it's gone!
This is what I fill up on every year with seconds... thirds...
If you are looking to have a Southern-style Thanksgiving, you can't go
wrong with this... and deviled eggs, of course.


Starting the pumpkin roll.
My excitement was sky high as I began the recipe for
the pumpkin roll/log.  I have been wanting to make this for a couple of years
now and always ended up making something else for some reason, but this
year I finally got to make it!


The finished pumpkin roll was more pleasing in a gustatory
sense than in an aesthetic one, haha.  The recipe says to use a towel when
you get to the step where you roll up the cake- I don't recommend that!
It ripped pieces of the cake/roll off and they were stuck to the towel.
It didn't rip all the way through,
which I was so thankful for, but it did give the roll a little bit of a 
"unique" look.  I am excited to make another one before too long so that
 I can do my best to make it look a little more like I envisioned, haha.

Looking past that, this turned out to be one of the most
delicious desserts.  
If you enjoy pumpkin bread or carrot cake (because the flavor 
reminded me a lot of that), then I'm sure you will enjoy this moist,
 rich, amazing dessert.  I can't wait to make it again!



This was gone way faster than it should have been, hehe.
But it was seriously too delicious.  Sprinkling powdered sugar
on the slices, drizzling leftover cream cheese filling on top, and 
warming it up didn't help with the temptation at all.


I highly recommend this recipe for a fun and delicious dessert.
I can attest to the fact that it is not only delicious- it also really put me
in the baking mood of the season!  It takes a little time to prepare,
but the result is more than worth it!
Here is the recipe I used:


Cake
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. salt
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup Libby's Pure Pumpkin
1 cup chopped walnuts (if desired)

Filling
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
1 cup sifted powdered sugar (plus more for dusting)
6 tbsp. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla

*I also added 1/4 cup extra powdered sugar
and 1/4 cup granulated sugar, but you 
can tailor it to your tastes :)


Directions
Heat oven to 375 degrees.
Grease a 15x10x1-inch jelly-roll pan.  Line with parchment paper.
Grease and flour the paper, set aside.  Arrange thin, cotton kitchen
towel on counter and sprinkle with powdered sugar (but mine stuck to the
towel, so I would suggest using parchment paper instead of the towel!)

Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves
and salt in a small bowl.  Combine eggs and sugar in larger bowl and 
beat until thickened.  Add in pumpkin and beat until well mixed.  Stir in
flour mixture.  Spread batter evenly in prepared pan.  Sprinkle with walnuts
if desired.

Bake for 13-15 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched.
Remove from oven and loosen cake from edges of pan immediately.
Invert onto prepared towel (or parchment paper).  Remove pan, carefully peel
off paper from back.  Roll up cake in towel (or parchment paper) while hot,
starting with 10-inch side.  Cool completely on wire rack while rolled.

Beat cream cheese, 1 cup powdered sugar, softened butter and vanilla
in small bowl until smooth.  Carefully unroll cake and remove towel/paper.
Spreak cream cheese mixture over cake.  Reroll cake.  Wrap in plastic wrap
and refrigerate at least one hour.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar
before serving if desired.




Aside from our meal, and meals we had throughout
the week, the simple but irreplaceable moments I soaked in each day- and especially
 Thanksgiving day- are locked in my heart as new memories and make up all
 that IS thankfulness to me this year...

Seeing my Grandma on her visit before Thanksgiving

Cozy afternoons by the fire during our colder days early in the week

Quiet, relaxing time staying home and crafting

Listening to the heavy rain and thunder during the storm 

Walking through the piling leaves of the Post Oak in front of our house

Relaxing in the familiar pages of Laura Ingalls Wilder's writing

Cooking our big meal with my Mama

Waking up Thanksgiving morning to the sounds of the parade

My Daddy coming in the kitchen and telling us how good everything smelled

and that he was thankful for us preparing all the food

The nostalgia of having the dog show on in the background

Having the cornbread dressing be my job and seeing my family smile
 as they tasted it

The bursting joy I feel at having a huge family, which I am reminded of when
 Thanksgiving Day is full of endless calls and wishes from everyone



...Some of these in particular are sweet reminders
to me of how grateful my heart is for where I am in life right now. 
I have so much to be joyful over and I am enjoying the simple and 
wonderful things of what is home, soaking up the moments as I learn, laugh,
and work at things I love, and spend time with those I am blessed to love.

 I am most thankful for family
and for my faith and relationship with God, who makes family
and love possible in the first place, and I feel more aware each year of how
precious those whose hands He placed my life in- my whole family- 
are and how priceless every conversation, every meal shared
 together, every hug, every everything is.
What a blessed week I had to ponder over that, the most real
and true thing in my life.



Hoping you had a most wonderful week
full of family, thankfulness, and blessings



4 comments:

  1. Jazzmin, you remind me of my daughter Peyton. She loves to help me in the kitchen! As I read this lovely post, I smiled because it sounds so much like our day! The parade, the food, the Yankee candle...
    I'm glad you enjoyed a lovely, cozy day...and I am impressed with your pumpkin roll!
    I have never attempted one in my life!!!!
    Have a wonderful beginning of December...enjoy the season!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Everything looks so delicious! Thanks for sharing the recipe. Glad you had a happy Thanksgiving!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Jazzmin, what a lovely post. I so enjoyed reading about all of that delicious food you and your mama prepared for the Thanksgiving meal! Oh my! Made me hungry! Your pictures are beautiful! But I especially enjoyed the way you shared about the memories you now have tucked away because of the season! Hugs and love to you, my friend.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Wonderful recipe everything looks so delicious, I am a 100% carrot cake lover, favorite cake in the world! (I can truly imagine how the pumpkin roll might taste) I love how its color turned out, totally keeping this recipe in my journal, thank you so much for sharing :).

    Blessings,


    ReplyDelete

Thank you for stopping by my blog. It is a blessing to read your kind comments. I would love if you would leave me one!

God Bless You,
Jazzmin

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