Grampa Rice

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 We were so lucky that Autumn was able to met her great grampa this past summer.

She happily sat on his lap as he cradled her with his massive hands. It was so great to see Autumn with Price and his mom Elaine and her father all together. Four Generations.

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Sadly he passed away just a few weeks ago at the age of 94.

Price went to the memorial in Maine today and is having some family time this weekend.

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Marshall L. Rice Sr. lived a long and happy life. He did a variety of jobs from being a solider to a business man to a lobster man.  He lived all over from Massachusetts to New York to Hawaii to Maine. He was even at the bombing of Pearl Harbor. He loved Sunshine, Maine so much that he even opened a campground so that others could enjoy its beauty as well. He will be greatly missed by his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and the others who’s lives he touched.

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Although Autumn won’t remember getting to meet her great grampa, we can show her these sweet pictures and tell her all about him.

We would see Marshall whenever Price and I visited his mom’s summer house in Maine. He would come over from his house down the road to have coffee and crossword puzzles with Elaine at the kitchen table or the table in the dining room. It was always so lovely to hear his deep voice discussing answers with Elaine as she read the clues out loud. His weathered, yet gentle, large hands gently held on to a floral teacup of coffee. In between the crossword puzzle answers he would talk about the current events on the island or about his past. It was always so nice to soak in those relaxed mornings.

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“It was a great trip, and I enjoyed every day of it. Goodbye to you all.”

xoxo

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York Peppermint Patty Brownies

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These brownies are awesome.

They make crummy days better and good days magnificent.

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I needed one of these bad boys this past Friday. I needed a little pick me up! oomph!

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Our babe had to go back to the orthopedic doctor on Friday to determine if her hips were in proper alignment yet (a complication from her legs being up from being Frank Breech), which would mean she could stop wearing her hip brace at night. Unfortunately, her x-ray revealed that she still needs to wear it as her right hip is not yet growing properly. It’s such a bummer as it means 6 more months in the brace for her. She has grown accustomed to wearing it but I still feel bad that she has to. Wahhh!!

At least we are dealing with it now as it can result in arthritis and she could need surgery later on. AHHH!!! where is my tray of brownies?!?!?!

For real, I definitely needed one of these York Peppermint Patty Brownies on Friday. Too bad I made these guys a few weeks ago. wahhh again.

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Ah mint, how I love thee. Thee, I love thee. I love that word.

But really, mint is great. And the chocolate and mint combo is thee best.

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 I had a bag of York Peppermint Pattys taunting me. Those little patty’s were begging to be eaten. I was yelling at them back ‘NOOO!!’ I couldn’t open that bag since once I snagged one of those wrapped patties I would grab another and another. And another.

So I figured that using a bunch of them in brownies would help me not shovel them in my mouth as fast as possible. At least I could potentially resist shoveling brownies in my mouth a bit more than just the candies. Plus, sharing is caring so I was able to share with my coworkers. Brownies for everyone!

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Grab a bowl, some peppermint patties, and you’ll soon be on your way to some mouth watering brownies. Okay, sure, you’ll need some more ingredients than just peppermint patties, but it will be worth a trip to the grocery store to make these brownies. I pinky swear ya!

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York Peppermint Patty Brownies

Makes 24 brownies

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces dark chocolate
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 6 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 20 snack sized York Peppermint Patty candies, chopped

Process

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 9×13 baking pan by buttering/spraying with non-stick cooking spray the bottom and sides and lining the bottom with parchment paper or tin foil.
  2. In a large microwavable safe bowl, melt the chocolate and the butter together, stirring every 30 seconds until completely melted and combined.
  3. Add the cocoa powder and sugar, mixing completely.
  4. Add in the beaten eggs and vanilla extract.
  5. Stir in the flour and salt to gently incorporate.
  6. Pour into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the chopped up candy pieces on top of the brownies.
  7. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center is clean upon removal. Do not over bake. Let cool prior to cutting into 24 pieces.
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12.12-14: Weekend Recap

{Friday}

Work from home | Autumn’s orthopedic appointment at Children’s Hospital- 6 more months of the brace | home | Autumn has dinner | we snack for dinner | kitchen clean up | Grimm | go to bed

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{Saturday}

 up at 6.15 | Price goes to Home Depot & Rite Aid | make pancakes | Price and Kemper go to get Paul’s Foreign Auto Body to get Frank’s oil changed | Autumn naps |  shower & get ready, pump | go Ikea for wadrobe | lunch at Ikea | Indy gets an oil change | home | nap in the car with Autumn | Autumn has dinner | Pizza Hut delivery | Autumn goes to bed | work | bed at 10.15

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{Sunday}

 up at 6.45 | leftover’s for breakfast | went to my office to pick up stuff | Petsmart | Old Navy | McDonald’s coffee | Autumn naps in car | bottle at home | make M&M cookie bars with Autumn for daycare | leftover pizza for lunch | Price assembles the wardrobe | Autumn takes afternoon nap|  make Rolo cookie cups | dinner | bath  | Syracuse basketball game | put away clothes, make bed | bed at 11

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Brown Butter Sea Salt Cookies

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I love cookie season!!!!!!!

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This is cookie season right? Let’s go with it. It’s basically the only thing I like about winter.

I just love the variety of it all. Cake it great but you can’t eat 4 slices of different cakes without someone raising some concern for your well being. But eat 4 cookies, eh not so horrible.

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So that is exactly why I was so excited for the First Annual Cookie Carnival from Secret Recipe Club. I’ve had so much fun with my monthly Secret Recipe Club posts the I knew this cookie themed post would be a blast. It’s just a blast to try a new recipe, especially cookies.

I was given Kates’s blog, A Spoonful of Thyme. I checked out her recipe index, which boasted plenty of cookie recipes. I checked them all out but the one that caught my eye was her Brown Butter Sea Salt Cookies.

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I made browned butter recently and now I want to browned butter all the things. So I was gavitated to this recipe. Plus, Kate kinda put up a challenge for the recipe as she felt it could use some tweaking as it wasn’t as sweet as she preferred and a bit to dry. Of course, I wanted to give it a try then. I figured I would play around with it, like I do with more recipes anyway, and see what resulted.

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I amped up the butter amount from 1 1/2 sticks to 2 sticks since she thought they were too dry. Plus, instead of browning both sticks up butter I would just brown 1 stick and cream the other stick of butter with the sugar, before adding in the browned butter. That would keep great browned butter flavor, but lighten up the texture.

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Next I added more sugar to the original recipe. I noticed the recipe called for 1/2 Cup of browned sugar, but most cookie recipes I see use more so I added some more granulated sugar to help sweeten things up.

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While I didn’t have the bakery cookies that inspired Kate to make her own, I can say that these are kick butt cookies. They are buttery, tender, crumbly, and totally amped up from the seat salt sprinkled on top.

I brought these into my office to share and they were a huge hit. I would love it for Kate to try out how I adapted her recipe and see what she thinks of it.

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Brown Butter Sea Salt Cookies

Makes 3 dozen cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 sticks of butter
  • 1/2 Cup lightly packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 Cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoonp vanilla extract
  • 2 Cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Sea Salt for sprinkling

Process

  1. Using 1 stick of butter, make the browned butter following these directions. Let cool.
  2. Cream the other stick of butter with the brown sugar and vanilla extract. When that is light anf fluffy, pour the brown butterand mix to incorporate again.
  3. In a small bowl whisk together the flour and the baking soda.  Add to the butter and sugar mixture and mix. The dough will be slightly crumbly.
  4. Roll the cookies into 1″ balls and sprinkle with sea salt.  Press the top of the cookies lightly- to shape and help the salt stick. Let chill for 1 hour.
  5. Preheat oven to 325° F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper/silpat. Arrange the cookies on the baking sheet. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until  golden brown.  Overcooking will make them dry and crumbly. Let cool on the baking sheet for 2 minutes prior to removing.

Adapted from A Spoonful of Thyme

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 There are TONS of Secret Recipe Club members posting cookie recipes today. Check them out!!!

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Fruitcake Pie

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There are 3 kinds of people in the world.

1. Those who love fruitcake.
2. Those who hate fruitcake.
3. Those who hate fruitcake but haven’t/won’t try it.

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This recipe is for ALL you.

If you love fruitcake then I’m sure you’ll love this and if you don’t like fruitcake I bet you’ll love this too as pie is always awesome. And the booze.

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People tend to hate on fruitcake since fruitcake can be dense and dry. But guess what? That is BAD fruitcake. Not all fruitcake is like a door stop. Good fruitcake will have you begging for more. I’m serious.

Every year Price’s dad sends us a fruitcake and it takes all my self control not to intercept it before he opens the package to eat it all myself and tell them it must have gotten lost in the mail. Now, that is good fruitcake!

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Part of what makes fruitcake so good is its boozy goodness. So I used 2 different liquors in this pie. There is rum in the crust and brandy in the pie. Boom!

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People will love this pie. The rich crust is a tender, flakey base for a custardy pie. The filling is custardy, and yet crunchy from the nuts. Every bite is jam packed full of brandy soaked fruit and crunchy pecans. It will be a great pie to serve this Christmas.

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Fruitcake Pie

Makes a 9″ pie

Ingredients

For the Pie Crust (you only use 1/2 of the dough)

  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) very cold unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup very cold vegetable shortening
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 4 Tablespoons Rum, very cold
  • 2 to 4 Tablespoons ice water

For the Pie Filling

  • 3/4 Cup red candied cherries
  • 1/4 Cup candied pineapple
  • /2 Cup chopped dates
  • 1/4 Cup chopped candied lemon peel
  • 1/2 Cup brandy
  • 6 Tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/2 Cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 Cup light corn syrup
  • 1 Cup pecan halves, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Process

  1. To prepare the fruit mixture for the pie, chop the candied cherries and pineapple. Combine the cherries, pineapple, dates, and lemon peel in a small bowl. Add the Brandy and mix to coat. Let soak for 1 hour- 24 hours.
  2. To make the crust, cut the butter and shortening into small pieces. Return it to the refrigerator while you prepare the flour mixture.
  3. Place the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a dough blade and pulse a few times to mix.
  4. Add the butter and shortening. Pulse until the butter is the size of peas and the mixture is crumbly While the machine is running, pour the ice water down the feed tube and pulse the machine until the dough begins to pull away from the sides. Dump out on a floured surface. Quickly kneed together, divide into equal sized balls. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  5. While the pie crust is chilling, chop the pecans. In a large bowl, cream the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, corn syrup, pecans, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg.
  6. Preheat the oven to $350 degrees. Grease a 9″ pie plate.
  7. Remove one of the dough balls from the refrigerator. Roll out on the floured surface again. Form a circular disk that is large enough to fit into the 9″ pie plate with some overhanging crust. While you are rolling it out, roll from the center to the edge, turning and flouring the dough to make sure it doesn’t stick to the surface.
  8. Drain the soaking fruit. (You may save the the Brandy to reuse for another pie.)
  9. Evenly sprinkle the fruit mixture over the crust. Pour the filling mixture over the fruit. 
  10. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until set. Cool on a wire rack. Refrigerate leftovers.

Pie Filling Adapted from Taste of Home, Pie Crust adapted from Ina Garten

 

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