Category Archives: Holidays

Mississippi Mud Pie

Every year, I treat my valentine (and in this case, my three valentines) to a special chocolate treat. As I’ve stated before and hopefully you’ve forgotten, I actually do not like chocolate. And not in the “I’ll eat this but it’s not my favorite” way but in the “if an M&M happens to make it’s way into my DQ Blizzard I might throw something at someone” way. It makes me less likable, I know this. People are literally offended at this fact so I try not to mention it. So, forget you ever read this. Now that we live a stone’s throw away from the mighty Mississip, I found it fitting to take on a truly chocolate pie. This was almost what I’d consider the Great Pie Fail of 2015, but it surprisingly turned out great. It’s got a flaky chocolate pie crust, an ooey gooey chocolate center and a fluffy whipped topping. Plus the shaved chocolate on top makes it look kind of fancy, don’t you think? Mississippi Mud Pie Mississippi Mud Pie Crust: 1 2/3 C all-purpose flour 2 TBSP unsweetened cocoa 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, cubed and cold 2 TBSP sugar 3-4 TBS cold water Filling: 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter 1 3/4 C packed light brown sugar 4 eggs 4 TBSP unsweetened cocoa 6 oz semisweet chocolate chips 1/2 C half and half Topping: 1 C heavy whipping cream 1 bar semisweet chocolate For the dough: Mix flour and cocoa in large mixing bowl. Add butter and cut in with a pastry blender until the mixture is crumbly. Gently mix in sugar. Drizzle cold water over dough and work into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes or more. Preheat oven to 350. Roll dough on a lightly flour surface. Place in pie dish or loose-bottomed tart pan. Place parchment paper on top and set dried beans or pie weights on top. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and remove parchment and beans. Bake for 10 more minutes. Set aside. For filling: Beat butter and sugar on medium speed. Add eggs one at a time until combined. Add cocoa one TBSP at a time. On the stove, melt chocolate chips in a heatproof bowl atop a pot of simmering water, stirring continuously. When melted, remove from heat and whisk in cream. Add chocolate mixture to bowl and beat at a medium speed. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Pour mixture into pie shell and bake for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely on wire rack. Transfer to plate. In a mixture with a whisk attachment, beat whipping cream at a high speed for approximately 5-8 minutes or until thick. Spread on top of pie. Using a vegetable peeler, shave chocolate to sprinkle over top. Slice and serve. Mississippi Mud Pie whole

Can’t get enough chocolate? Try some of these for your sweetie this Valentine’s Day from our friends around the web!

The Lemon Bowl: Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Creamy Cheese Frosting
Feed Me Phoebe: Dark Chocolate Beauty Bark with Chia Seeds, Pepitas and Goji Berries
The Heritage Cook: Gluten-Free Black & White Brownies with Orange Glaze
Virtually Homemade: Chocolate Covered Strawberries with Coconut
Creative Culinary: Raspberry Boccone Dolce (Pavlova with Chocolate and Raspberries)
Daisy at Home: Mocha Mousse Marshmallow Cake
The Mom 100: Molten Chocolate Peanut Butter Cakes
Dishin & Dishes: Espresso Truffles
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Chocolate-Covered Strawberries
The Cultural Dish: Moroccan Pots de Creme
Red or Green: Dark Chocolate Truffles- 4 Flavors 
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Chocolate-Coconut-Cashew Bark with Sea Salt
The Wimpy Vegetarian: Chocolate and Pretzel Bark with Sea Salt
In Jennie’s Kitchen: Fudgy, Chewy Brownies {dairy free}
Taste with the Eyes: Chocolate Mint Parfaits with Chocolate Hearts
Food for 7 Stages of Life: Everyday Chocolate Granola
FN Dish: Melt Hearts with Handmade Chocolate Sweets — Comfort Food Feast



Filed under Treats, Valentine's Day

Creamy Turkey Wild Rice Soup

Tomorrow is the big day but I’m already looking forward to the day after. And the day after that. That’s right. Thanksgiving leftovers. I can’t help myself when it comes to leftover turkey anything. Soup, sandwich, casserole, omelet, you name it! I’ve always been a sucker for the Chicken Wild Rice Soup from Panera (or as they call it here in STL, St. Louis Bread Co.) This recipe combines the juicy leftovers (dark meat too!) along with a creamy texture and savory rice to make for the perfect soothing post Thanksgiving Day meal. And if you’re like me and get sick every year around this time, it helps with that as well.


Creamy Turkey Wild Rice Soup
Serves 6-8

1 C wild rice
2 C water
2-3 C leftover turkey
5 C chicken stock (turkey or vegetable work too)
3 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
3 large celery stalks, chopped
1 C mushrooms (any kind), chopped
2 tsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
4 TBSP unsalted butter
2 TBSP flour
2 C milk

In a medium saucepan, add rice and water. Bring to boil. Reduce to simmer and cover. Simmer for 30 minutes. The rice will not be fully done. Add rice and any remaining water to chicken stock mixture in large stock pot.

In large stock pot, add chicken stock, turkey, carrots, celery and mushrooms. Bring pot to a simmer and add garlic, oregano, salt and pepper. Keep at low simmer.

In a medium saucepan, melt butter. Add flour and whisk until mixture bubbles. Slowly whisk in milk. Whisk continuously until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and add to large stock pot. Mix together and stir occasionally at a low heat until soup is thickened.

Ladle and enjoy!


When reheating leftovers, you may want to add a little extra milk to the mixture before reheating. The rice tends to pull in the liquid when saved.

Happy Thanksgiving to you!

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Filed under Cook, Healthy, Quick & Easy, Thanksgiving

Pumpkin Bread Truffles

Sick of pumpkin yet? Seems the stores this year are filled to the brim with pumpkin and pumpkin spice flavored everything. When it comes down to it, there is nothing like a good old-fashioned slice of homemade pumpkin bread. So this year, I am joining up an easy and delicious pumpkin bread recipe with some white chocolate for these fabulously fall Pumpkin Bread Truffles. Like a classic pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting, these little bites are a great treat for any fall or Halloween party. Feel free to add some chopped pecans or walnuts to the bread recipe for extra salt and texture.

Pumpkin Bread Truffles via Haute Apple Pie

Pumpkin Bread Truffles

Pumpkin bread
1  12 oz. can cream cheese frosting (or homemade cream cheese frosting if you prefer)
2 – 1 lb package of white almond bark
Fall sprinkles

Pumpkin Bread Recipe
Makes 2 loaves

1 15 oz. can of pumpkin puree
4 eggs
3/4 C vegetable oil
2/3 C water
2 tsp vanilla
1 C brown sugar
1 C sugar
3 1/2 C AP flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/2 TBSP cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 2 9×5 inch loaf pans with cooking spray.

In mixing bowl, combine pumpkin, eggs, oil, water, vanilla, brown sugar and sugar at a medium speed, until thoroughly combined. In separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves until combined.

Slowly add flour mixture to wet mixture, with mixing speed on low, until flour is fully incorporated.

Bake at 350 for 60 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes clean.

Allow to cool.

When cooled, crumbled one pumpkin loaf into large mixing bowl. Slowly add half the container (about 3/4 C) cream cheese frosting and combine with hands. On a lined baking sheet, roll mixture into 1 1/2 inch balls. Refrigerate and cool for one or more hours.

Melt almond bark on stove top or in microwave according to package directions. Immediately roll pumpkin balls, one at a time, into melted bark, coating evenly. Place back on lined sheet and sprinkle immediately.

Repeat with second loaf if desired. Each loaf makes about 2 dozen Pumpkin Bread Truffles. Allow to set and harden before serving.

Pumpkin Bread Truffles

Store in cool place or refrigerator for one week or freeze.

Want more pumpkin? You got it! Follow these links for some sweet and savory pumpkin recipes!
Feed Me Phoebe: 7 Healthy Pumpkin Recipes for Fall
The Lemon Bowl: Pumpkin Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies (Gluten-Free)
Jeanette’s Healthy Living: Gluten-Free Pumpkin Spice Oat Chocolate Chip Pancakes
Bacon and Souffle: Easy Pumpkin Bundt Cake
Weelicious: Quick Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls
Virtually Homemade: Gluten-Free Dark Brownies with Pumpkin Frosting
Devour: Eat As Much Pumpkin As Possible
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Pumpkin and Chocolate Chip Cake
Red or Green: Spiced Pumpkin Waffles with Maple Syrup Glazed Bacon
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Cookies
The Cultural Dish: Baked Pumpkin Doughnuts
The Mom 100: Pumpkin Gingerbread with Crystallized Ginger
Domesticate Me: No-Bake Pumpkin Pie Energy Bites with Dark Chocolate Chunks (Vegan and Gluten-Free)
Swing Eats: Pumpkin Almond Spice Waffles (Gluten-Free)
FN Dish: Pumpkin Spice (and Everything Nice)
I Am Baker: Pumpkin Spice Puppy Chow
Taste With The Eyes: Savory Little Pumpkins with Labneh, Zaatar and Pumpkin Seed Oil



Filed under Fall, Treats

Valentine Cake Balls

I’ve been Valentine’s nostalgic this year after signing up to bring the sweet treat for my little guy’s Valentine’s Day party at school. Nothing says Valentine’s Day more than Conversation Hearts. While these little heart-shaped sugar messages have evolved over the years – TXT ME, TWEET ME – the taste still brings back memories of stuffing little homemade mailboxes full of loving messages and treats.


I knew these three and four-year-olds would be hopped up on lots of sugary treats, so I wanted to make a bite sized treat to share. I put together these funfetti conversation heart cake balls that are as tasty as they are cute!

Valentine Cake Balls
Yields approx. 30
1 box Funfetti cake mix (w ingredients included on box directions)
6 oz whipped vanilla frosting (1/2 can)
2 12 oz. packages pink candy melts
1 small box conversation hearts

Bake cake mix according to directions on box. Allow to cool.

In a large mixing bowl, crumble cake. Add frosting and mush cake and frosting together with hands, working frosting through cake to mold together. Using a tablespoon or cookie dough scoop, scoop out 1-2 inch balls of dough and roll. Place onto foil lined baking sheet. Continue until all dough is used up. Refrigerate for at least one hour.

In microwave, melt candy melts according to directions. Using a teaspoon, drop balls, one at a time into candy melt mix. Full coat and slowly drop balls back onto foil lined sheet. Place one conversation heart on the top of each ball, pressing in. Put in a cool place to dry, at least one hour. Cover for up to one week or freeze for three months.

Valentine's Cake Balls

Looking for another comforting Valentine dessert? Try any of these from our friend’s around the web!

Jeanette’s Healthy Living: Quinoa Fudge Brownies
Feed Me Phoebe: Salted Caramel Budino with Whipped Cream
In Jennie’s Kitchen: Milk Chocolate Brownies
Big Girls, Small Kitchen: A Chocolate Fondue Party
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Blood Orange Bars
Dishing with Divya: Carrot Halwa
Virtually Homemade: Raspberry Grand Marnier Mascarpone Hand Pies 
Devour: 5 Bread Pudding Recipes for Valentine’s Day
Weelicious: Puff Pastry Berry Hearts
Red or Green: Hot Chocolate, New Mexican Style
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Chocolate Cake Brownies (Refined Sugar-Free)
The Sensitive Epicure: Nutella Panna Cotta
Food for 7 Stages of Life: S’mores on a Stick
Tasting With The Eyes: Puff au Chocolat avec Fraises, Basilic, Fleur de Sel
FN Dish: DIY Chocolate Desserts for Valentine’s Day

Happy Valentine’s Day!



Filed under Cook, Kid Friendly, Treats, Valentine's Day

DIY Valentine Chalkboard Decor

Valentine’s Day is not my favorite holiday. If not for my dislike for chocolate, my hatred for overpriced greeting cards and crowded restaurants, maybe I would enjoy it a bit more. But I am not a total curmudgeon. I still like to sprinkle my house with a few hearts and kisses and share an extra hug or two.

I am constantly seeing gorgeous pictures of holiday mantles. Unfortunately for me, I have no mantle. I use the space above my living room TV as a mantle, using shelves, pictures, wreaths and frames to break up the large wall. This Christmas I purchased a large, old frame for $2 from Goodwill and did a little chalkboard rehab on it (similar to this post). I hung it above my TV, tied a wreath on with some fabric and wrote “peace” at the bottom. I fell in love with it and decided I would use it all year long and switch it up of the different holidays and seasons.

DIY Valentine Chalkboard Decor

For Valentine’s Day, I used all items I have laying around the house. It took about 10 minutes and brings cheer and color to the room!

DIY Valentine Chalkboard Decor
What you need:
Red and pink patterned scrapbook paper
Flat pushpins
Mini wooden clothespins

Fold paper in half. Draw half-hearts and cut around with scissors. Make in slightly different sizes and shapes. I made four for each jute strand, eight in total.

Cut jute to desired lengths. Stick pushpin through the jute and affix to the back of the frame. Drape across the front and pin the other side to the opposite backside of the frame. Overlap for the second strand, following the same process.

Clip paper hearts to the strands. Write your favorite love phrase at the bottom with a few small hearts drawn with chalk and hang on the wall.

This is a very easy, very quick project. If you were more ambitious, you could sew some small fabric hearts to attach to the jute strands.

DIY Valentine Decor

Wishing you a very happy Valentine’s Day from Haute Apple Pie! Check out the links below for other Valentine projects and recipes:
Free Valentine’s Day Typography Download
Sew Sweet Valentines
Picture Perfect Valentines
Orange Scented French Toast with Nutella
Cinnamon French Toast with Cranberry Orange Chutney
Valentine’s Date Night In
Velvety Hot Fudge Sauce
Berry Mousse Pie


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Filed under Decorate, DIY, Valentine's Day

Haute Apple Pie in Taste of Home!

Well now that Thanksgiving is in our short, but distant past, Christmas season is rolling in with full force. We are excited to kick it off with a picture of Stef, with her son and niece, gracing the pages of the December/January issue of Taste of Home magazine! And also online, HERE

Honey Crunch Cookies are a great alternative to an Oatmeal Scotchie. Made with rice cereal and butterscotch chips, they are a great option to add to your holiday cookie tray. For the Taste of Home recipe, click here.

We look forward to sharing holiday gift guides, cookie recipes, party ideas and other Christmastime cheer with you over the next month!


Filed under Christmas, Holidays

Happy Halloween!

Be a good little monkey…


Filed under Family, Holidays