One Smart Little Cookie is a collection of everything that brings inspiration, comfort and beauty into my life and home.
I love to create a beautiful home and enjoy it with my family.
It is sharing
what I love to do; baking and cooking in a healthier way without sacrificing flavor
, crafts,
party planning, activities, organization, and home decor.

Being a "Smart Little Cookie" is not about being perfect, it is about knowing how to enjoy life and family to it's fullest~to your fullest.
Due to my creative process, my home gets messy, my kids play in their jammies-all day sometimes (the terribly relaxed days tend to be my favorite),
and my hubby has become much more patient and supportive over the years with all of this.
In fact, he often has his own creative ideas and we both find ourselves anticipating our upcoming projects together~love him!
Don't get me wrong, I LOVE a clean house, but I've rejected denial, and with a toddler who is a budding creative type herself,
I feel accomplished when the dishes are in the dishwasher before naptime (not mine, hers).
I've accepted the fact that "spotless" cannot mean what I have always
envisioned in my mind, at least not with kids,
and I would rather enjoy my kids and beautiful home, than a spotless, sterile home.
I have learned to take each day, one day at a time, and everyday should leave us feeling inspired and more contented.
The day should leave us, whispering in our ear, "the day has been as well as it could have been done, and it has been done well."

Go ahead and take a bite, indulge yourself and try my recipes and crafty creations in your own home.
I hope to inspire you to feel like the "Smart Little Cookie" you are!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Greek Easter Bread

With Easter on it's way, I've made one of my favorite Easter recipes, Greek Easter Bread.  This bread is not only Delicious (it tastes very similar to Hawaiian Bread), it is Absolutely Gorgeous! It will look Beautiful on your special Easter table at breakfast or dinner.  It also makes a delicious french toast, when sliced.
Bon Appetit!  
 20 Servings

The Recipe

1 t. allspice                                                             1/2 sugar
2 t. cinnamon                                                          3 T. butter
1 cup warm water                                                    2 large eggs
pinch of salt                                                            2 egg whites
pinch of sugar                                                         1 t. salt
2 packages yeast                                                     1 T. water
4 3/4 cups unbleached flour                                      1 large egg yoke

Combine water, pinch of salt, pinch of sugar, and yeast in a large bowl, stir with a whisk.  Let stand for 5 minutes.  Add 1 cup flour to the yeast mixture and stir until combined.  Let stand 20 minutes.

Place sugar and butter in a large bowl and mix until light and fluffy.  Add eggs and egg whites, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.  Stir in the allspice and cinnamon.  Add the yeast mixture to the butter mixture and mix with a whisk until well combined.  Stir in 1 t. salt.  Add 3 1/2 cups flour, 1 cup at a time.  The dough will be sticky.

Place the dough in a large bowl, coated well with cooking spray, coat the top as well.  Cover and let rise for 1 hour or until size has doubled.

Divide dough into 3 equal portions.  Shape each portion into 14-inch-long ropes.  Place the ropes lengthwise on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray.  Pinch the ends together at one end to seal.  Braid the ropes and pinch the end pieces to seal.  Lightly coat with cooking spray.  Cover and let rise 45 minutes or until size is doubled.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine 1 T. water and egg yolk, stirring with a whisk.  Brush half of yolk mixture over the loaf.  Let stand 5 minutes.  Repeat with the remaining egg yolk mixture.  Bake for 30 minutes or until loaf sounds hollow when tapped.  Cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes.  Mmmm...!

This recipe is from Cooking Light, so the recipe has already been lightened.  I have cut a tad more fat and cholesterol in the recipe by using 2 egg whites, along with 2 whole eggs.  This does not compromise the taste or texture of the bread. 


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