What a sweet, sweet year this was. Once again, you guys have shown me just how much you love your sweet treats. (Me and my sweet tooth are totally cool with that, by the way.) Cookies, cupcakes, bars, ice cream, it doesn't seem to matter. As long as it's sweet, it seems to hit all the right notes. For that I say a huge and very heartfelt thank you.
I also owe you all a thank you I still don't quite believe I get to say. Your response to my best-ever chewy chocolate chip cookies has been unbelievable. Truly. I still cannot wrap my head around the number of hits and comments I've gotten from these cookies; they've brought my blog to a place I never imagined it could be. Apparently, you believed me when I said they really were (still are!) the best chocolate chip cookies I've ever eaten. Thank you.
In February I had the pleasure of participating in a virtual baby shower for one of my dear friends, Annie. I'm not going to lie, choosing a treat for someone as amazing as Annie was definitely intimidating. Good thing Annie is not only super talented but super sweet, as well; I knew she'd love the fact that I participated no matter what I made. Then I found these butterscotch blondies with chocolate ganache and my nervousness melted away. I knew Annie would love them. I did too.
M and I had the most wonderful time on our Hawaiian honeymoon. When we returned, we had a dinner party to thank our parents for everything they did for us to make it all possible. We made a menu of Hawaiian favorites and finished off with the piña colada ice cream. It may not be traditional, but it's one of our new favorites.
An urge to bake and a surplus of cream cheese, ripe bananas, and banana chips led to these banana cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. What a happy and delicious coincidence!
Summers in Arizona are ridiculously hot. I don't really enjoy anything about that extreme heat, but I do take it as a sign that I need to make plenty of ice cream. I found this raspberry gelato recipe and knew I needed to make it. Oh my, was I so glad I did!
With August came back to school time and a new reason to bake. I changed schools and knew sharing treats would be a great way to begin getting to know my new coworkers. I am so happy to say the wonderful reception to these peanut butter and jelly bars was a great indication of how much I would love my new job.
My husband loves lemon and apparently you all do too! These lemon buddies were a huge hit. Good thing they're easy to make and perfect for sharing with a crowd.
Nothing can top the feeling of using my love of cooking and baking for celebrations. My friend Josie, a true Southern belle, welcomed a sweet baby boy into the world this year and craved sweet tea for much of her pregnancy. I was beyond thrilled to make this sweet tea tiramisu for her virtual baby shower.
What can I even say about this pumpkin spice pull-apart bread with bourbon glaze? Layer upon layer of yeasted pumpkin bread filled with cinnamon sugar and covered in a generous drizzle of bourbon glaze. I think I'll just leave it there.
Whenever I hear someone say cupcakes are on their way out I just giggle. Sure, they might not be all the rage they were a year ago, but who doesn't love having their own miniature cake? I mean really, who could resist something as delicious and elegant as these cranbery chai cupcakes?
Of course, the sweetest moment of the year didn't happen in the kitchen--it was when I became Mrs. M. It's been nine whole months, but I still get teary eyed every time I think about the moment I saw him at the end of the aisle.
I've never been so happy in my entire life.
And just because I can, I'm adding one more wedding picture--it's our favorite. I hope you all don't mind.