Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy New Year 2009!

We have officially arrived at the beginning of the New Year! What will 2009 bring us? I'm not sure, but I do know I can't wait to find out! While we had a loss in 2008 of our beloved Spike, we also had a very special pup come into our life... remember how small he was?

Not so much anymore - he's grown into a little 15 pound shaggy hot dog! We've also discovered that we really loves snow...

We thought it would be nice to do a little recap for our recipe totals in 2008. We prepared a total of 429 new recipes last year. This brings the total amount of recipes we've tried and posted on the website to a whopping 1575! Whew! While it is really hard to nail down a select few of both savory and sweet items, here's what we whittled the list down to as favorites of the year - however, I would rattle off quite a few more if could! Just in case the names don't ring a bell, we'll include their pictures to help you remember! Also, I do have a new recipe to share that we made yesterday... see below the pictures to find out what Jeff wanted to snack on!

From our savory section...

From our sweet section...

We stayed in this New Year's Eve... Jeff had decided he wanted to just pick at stuffs we already have instead of doing a full meal. However, the one thing he did request was a cheese ball! A little out of left field for him to ask for that, but who am I to argue?

Dead easy, this Cheddar Cheese Ball is a combination of softened cream cheese, shreds of sharp white cheddar cheese, a dollop of Dijon for tang and a few shakes of Worcestershire sauce. Scooped up into a ball, you'll want to allow at least a couple of hours for this to chill and firm back up. For a textural crunch against the creamy cheeses, we rolled our ball in toasted chopped pecans, but feel free to use your favorite nut or even some fresh herbs.

I actually made the ball yesterday and let it hang out in the refrigerator overnight so it would be ready for us to work on throughout the day today! Jeff said he hasn't had a cheese ball since he was a kid, so he was pretty excited - easy to please I guess! He did comment that a few strips worth of crumbled bacon might be a nice addition to change it up - I agree and even think adding a little blue or Gorgonzola cheeses for a little pungency would work well too.



  1. Everything looks so scrumptious!

    Happy New Year and best wishes for 2009!



  2. ALL of your creations are wonderful, but being the sugar fiend that I am I REALLY liked all your desserts!!! I can't wait to see what 2009 brings!! Happy New Year!

  3. It's been quite a year of cooking and baking for you! I'm amazed at the sheer number of new recipes. You have my admiration, and quite often you inspire me to be a little more creative.

    I had to laugh when I read about your cheese ball. There must be something in the air, because a few days ago my husband requested one out of the blue. I last made one over a decade ago, but somehow it stuck in his mind and he decided it would be just the thing for this New Year's Eve. I used cream, cheddar and blue cheeses, and rolled it in sliced almonds just to be different.

    Best wishes for a happy and healthy 2009!

  4. Wow--that is a lot of recipes! Thank you so much for all of them and all of your wonderful posts!

    I hope you have a happy and healthy new year!


  5. Happy New Year!

    What a great recap. So many recipes that are a keeper in our house from your site.

    Great picture of that cute dog.

  6. Happy New Year to you, Jeff, and the pups! I enjoy visiting here and checking out what you've made, and not least of all how you styled your food. You make everything look so perfect.

    Now that you brought those decadent looking cupcakes back up to the top I'm going to have to move them to the top of my list. I bought the marshmallow creme when you first talked about them but I never made them. I'm also really interested in the lighter chicken enchiladas! The list goes on and on. Thanks again!


  7. I love your website! I visit daily to admire your recipes, looking forward to the new year. Thank you!

  8. Happy New Year to all!
    It's interesting to me and maybe it's a geographical preference but cheese balls are a holiday tradition for me and I make two every year, one is a combination of cheddars, creamed cheese and butter, and the other is just creamed cheese, butter and pineapple with a blend of veggies and spices.
    I too am amazed at the number of recipes you are preparing. And I agree that your presentations are to be envied.
    Thank you for opening your lives and sharing what you do - it's a pleasure to be a part of it.

  9. Love all your recipes and food and photos! Great go-to blog.
    Love your doggies, too!
    Happy New Year!

  10. what a great re-cap! happy 2009!

  11. Great recipes and I'm sure they will continue thru this year. Happy New Year to all of you.

  12. I love the idea of an herbed covered cheeseball.

    You must be fabulous at moderation as everything look absolutely delicious!

    Check this out: Have you heard of it? I thought of it when you said something about bacon in the cheeseball.

  13. Happy New Year Joe!!
    The food sure looks delicious and I remember each one of the posts!
    But your dog wins the prize today, he was the cutest puppy, what a beautiful dog you guys have!!!

  14. Happy New Year to both of you and the pups! Your daily posts are such an inspiration. How do you do it - so much cooking and then writing and taking photos?!! And, this year-end review is fabulous!

    I am so happy to find a recipe for a cheese ball that is easy, very tasty-sounding and, this is important, with NO butter. Can't wait to try it!