Cream Cheese Spirals aka Rugelach

These little buggers are trouble. I don’t think you can eat just one- I know we couldn’t. Luckily, we brought these over to a friend’s house when we were watching the Giants vs Colts game on Sunday to share the wealth. (Seriously, what they hell happened guys? Giants have to step it up!)

You might be thinking ‘these look like rugelach’. Well you’re right! These basically are. I’m just calling them Cream Cheese Spirals since I don’t want someone looking at this saying ‘Rugelach has apricot jam in the filling’ or ‘this does not have enough sugar’ etc. Either way, both these and rugelach are amazing. I’m really glad that I made these because it opened my eyes to why I love rugelach… cream cheese and butter. I won’t be eating rugelach for a LONG time now.

I loved rolling these guys up into a cresent (roll) shape. But to be honest… next time (a long time from now) I will just divide the dough into 3-4 sections and roll them out into rectangles and make them into the logs to slice them. So you can skip the rolling out into a circle, trimming, and then reworking into trim parts into rectangles if you want. I totally give you permission. Do whatever it easy and enjoyable.

Cream Cheese Spirals

2 sticks of unsalted butter, softened
8 oz cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons vanilla sugar*
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 cups of flour, sifted
Filling
1 cup walnuts or peacons, finealy shopped
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup vanilla sugar*
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Using an electric mixer, cream together the cream cheese, butter, sugar, and vanilla extract until soft. Add in the flour in batches and mix until a dough forms. Divide the dough in half and flatten into disks, wrap in wax paper and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Make the filling by combining the nuts, sugars, and cinnamon. Set aside.

Preheat your oven to 375. Grease 2 cookie sheets.

Remove dough from refrigerator. Roll out each half into a thin circle and trim to 11 inches (about the size of a dinner plate). Reserve the remnants. Sprinkle some of the filling mixture onto the circle, press into the dough. Cut the circle into 4 sections, then 4 more, totaling 16 sections.  Roll the spirals from the widest point to the smallest.

Gently kneed the trimmed pieces to incorporate together. Roll out into a rectangle. Press the remaining filling mixture  into the dough. Roll the dough into a log and then slice.

Evenly place all spirals on a baking sheet. Bake until golden, 15-20 minutes.



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Calzones

Calzones are pizza’s well packed cousin. Everything fits nicely into the crusty pocket. Once you break into time you watch the lovely, melted cheese coming flowing out. You can just have a cheese calzone but it’s like cheese pizza- very lonely. So along with the cheese you can add in pepperoni, mushrooms, ham, jalapeños, olives, sausage…. the possibility are endless.

Personally, I love them because you dip pieces into tomato sauce. And since I LOVE ketchup I think this act of dipping into another tomato medium is pretty damn awesome. Because you are dipping into the sauce you want to make sure it stands up again the rest of the calzone. You can use a home made sauce or a jarred sauce. The real key is to get something thin so it evenly coats the calzones, instead of a chunky sauce.

I go as far as to add a tiny bit of sauce in my calzone. I know, so crazy! I

The same goes for the dough… both store bought or home made works perfectly. If you are pressed for time just get store bought. I think that the key thingwhen you are using store bought it so let it sit out and get warm. Messing with chilly dough just results in holes since the dough has not loosened up yet. That goes for homemade as well, but I think it’s even worse with store bought.


Calzones

pizza dough (store bought or home made)
tomato sauce
mozzarella cheese
optional add ins: (turkey) pepperoni, canned or cooked mushrooms, ham, bacon, olives, endless possibilites
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Divide dough into even sides portions. Stretch out dough into rectangular or circular shapes.
Add in the filling you desire leaving enough room at the edges to pinch together to seal calzone.
Cook for 20+ minutes*
Let cool so the middle is not boiling lava hot and enjoy with tomato sauce.
*Cooking time depends on the size of calzone and your oven.



3.30am

Sunday night

Monday night

Tuesday night

Wednesday night

Every night I woke up during the night around 3.30. I hardly ever, make that never, wake up in the middle of the night. But this week was different and I am not pleased. First I was having a hard time falling asleep. Then I would have really vivid wild dreams. The dreams actually started during a nap on Saturday. Either way these are not the butterfly and rainbow dreams. These are the wake up in a start kind of dreams going ‘ WTF???’

So, lets take last night… I go to bed  around 11.30 and lay there and lay there and you get the picture. Finally I fall asleep and sure enough wake up in the middle of the night. Look at my alarm clock and, big surprise, it’s 3.30. I was not hot, cold, tangled in sheets, uncovered, didn’t have to pee, no bad dream at that point… nothing really to wake me up. So I lay there willing myself back to sleep, all while checking the clock… 3.45 then 4.00 then 4.15 then 4.30. I feel back a sleep after than just to wake up at 5.15 to start my day.

I think of is because my Pricer is not here this week, a busy week at work, the chaos that was our apartment (was finished last night!! Pics to come), and the change in season. Well I can’t fix all of those things but the 1 thing I can do is try unisom for the first time ever and hope that I make it past 3.30. So I’m off to bed before 8.30 hoping to get some real sleep tonight.

Brimfield: From Balls Jars to Raspberry Lime Rickeys

Emily and I went to Brimfield again this year becuase we loved the experieince last year so much. It’s just a massive conacopia of crap. Some good, so bad, all with a pretty funny story. Here goes…

(L) A 1800’s ‘casket’ used in transporting the dearly departed to furneral homes. They advertised that this would make for a great hallow decoration. (R) Pretty amazing magnifying glasses that this man makes with handles from old knives.

(L) A small Pyrex dish for $3. I should have gotten it! (R) A thread spool organizer could be yours for $500+

Possibly the cutest thing all day. This hutch had storage for flour and sugar. The flour is on the left with the built in sifter. The cabinets had storage and some cooking information/instructions. $1600

Raspberry Lime Rickey $3 in process and in consumption

(L) A quick self portrait (R) A coral lamp

(L) Emily trying out a new hobby? Testing out a toy gun (R) Rabbits and other animals. I’m particularly sure what they are from. $40
Check out Emily’s Flickr album to see pics of a corpse bride, a very flexible mannequin, and an old mustang.


Weekend Recap

I would have to say this weekend was a sucess. I had a great time with pricer before he left for another week. Plus I got do a bunch of fun things.

Starting with Friday night… We originally talked about going to see The American but the movie times didn’t work for is since we planned on making calzones for dinner. (I got up early on Friday morning to make the dough. It was the first time ever and I’ll be doing it again and again now. I could see the difference from the store bought kinds.) So we stayed in to have calzones and watch Date Night. I cracked up throughout the whole movie.

Then we took a walk into Coolidge Corner for frozen yogurt. I got my usual, mango/plain swirl with blackberries, kiwi, starwberries, but this time I got some mango too. Price got banana/chocolate swirl with some chocolate toppings.

On Saturday morning I went to Brimfield with Emily. This was our second time so we knew what to look out for, and yet this were things that still shocked us. I went to get a brouch for Halloween, Pyrex, and blue ball jars. It was a successful trip there!

  

I took a nap before Price and I met a new BAC masters student for dinner to give him some pointers on surviving that school, like who are the important people to know, time management, and who are the people you’ll see by the BAC, like Louie.

Price and I watched NASCAR when we got home.

Sunday was much more relaxed with ‘sleeping in’ until 9:30, reading the paper and watching the news and food network. We then headed out to try a sandwich place before seeing the noon showing of The American. Both the sandwich place and the movie were great.

 

Then a trip to Home Depot and Target, a nap, and Price was gone again. 😦