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12 Days of Sharing:Lemon Muffins and Mango Jam

Posted on 07 December 2009 by noelskitchen

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas here in the Sierra Foothills. Our first snow of the season has fallen. The trees are covered and the ground looks like powdered sugar. The baking season is upon us and today is the first day of 12 Days of Sharing.

For the next 12 days I’ll be posting some homemade baked goods and jams in honor of the 12 Days of Sharing. On Saturday, our team Nevada County Bakers will be at the Nevada County Food and Toy Run selling those baked goods and homemade jams to raise money for the Share Our Strength campaign. Being part of the Share Our Strength campaign, I’ve met a lot of fellow food bloggers dedicating their time to this great cause, including fellow food blogger, Jennifer Perillo of In Jennie’s Kitchen who is hosting our 12 Days of Sharing event.

Today I’ve decided to contribute to the Virtual Cookie Jar  a zesty Lemom Muffin recipe along with a homemade Mango jam. This is one new recipe I’ll add to our bake sales.These muffins are light and fluffy with a zesty kick. I hope you enjoy them! Later in the week I’ll be dedicating more to the cookies.

If you would like to donate to Share Our Strength, just click on the badge below.  By donating you will be entered in a giveaway  to win some funtastic prizes inluding a new Cuisinart Mixer, Gift Certificates and More!

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Zesty Lemon Muffins


1 cup unsalted butter

1 cup sugar, plus a little extra to sprinkle on top of muffins before baking

4 large eggs, separated

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon lemon zest


In a medium size mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy; add egg yolks one at a time, beating well. Set aside.

In another mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt; add to creamed mixture. Slowly add the lemon juice, beating well.

Lightly beat eggs whites until frothy. Fold egg whites into batter; stir in lemon zest. Using large scoop, fill muffin cups about three-quarters full. Sprinkle tops of muffins with sugar.

Bake lemon muffins at 375° for 20 to 25 minutes, until lightly brown. Makes about 12 lemon muffins.


Mango Jam


12 cups fresh mango diced

2 cups sugar

4 cups water

zest of 1 lemon


In a medium pot, cook mango slices in water about 15 minutes or until tender. Drain.  Add sugar. Boil until thick and of jam consistency. Stir often to prevent scorching. Cool to room temperature. Jam will thicken as it sits. Spoon into canning jars. Makes a great holiday gift.



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The Gift of a Cookie:12 Days of Sharing

Posted on 03 December 2009 by noelskitchen


Giving cookies as a gift or thank you is a common tradition around the holidays, like when you bake for your neighbor or friend.

Buy a cookie-Help make a difference! Put a smile on your face and on a child’s knowing that you helped make a difference in a child’s life.

As many of you know, I started my team of community bakers to include moms, dads, grandparents, friends and local business owners at the beginning of the school year.  The response from everyone has been tremendous.

The Nevada County Bakers is off to a hot start this holiday season with an array of events. Starting Monday, December 7th-December 12th, a group of fellow foodies will be participating in the 12 Days of Sharing, hosted by In Jennie’s Kitchen - a virtual cookie swap as part of the Share Our Strength campaign. All are welcome to participate!

The Nevada County Bakers will be topping the 12 Days of Sharing by participating in the Nevada County Food and Toy Run  on Saturday, December 12th. So those of you who are locally in the area, stop on by for an assortment of baked goods, raffle prices and support our community.

Join us in making a difference this holiday season. Not only will you find some amazing cookie recipes for this holiday season, with your donation, you’ll receive a giveaway ticket for some pretty cool gifts. How exciting is that?

Visit the virtual cookie jar and find a favorite recipe. Then pay it forward and click the 12 Days of Sharing badge to make a donation. Every amount counts, so no donation is too small.

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Share Your Season:Homemade For The Holidays

Posted on 07 November 2009 by noelskitchen


Share Your Season with the Nevada County Bakers

With the holidays approaching fast, it’s time for another Bake Sale  for our team of bakers. We are testing some favorite holiday recipes and planning what to bake and putting together some favorite holiday gifts sets. Our next bake sale is planned for Saturday, December 12, 2009. (Further details to follow in future posts.)

For families facing hunger, the holidays can be one of the hardest times of the year. This holiday season you can Share Your Season and help end childhood hunger in America and in your community.

Homemade For The Holidays

The crispness of the Fall air and the beautiful colors of the leaves remind me of the holidays and making fresh baked goods. As we move into November, there are a number of pumpkin recipes that come to mind. I am happy to be baking one of my all time favorite pumpkin recipes for this holiday bake sale. It’s moist and full of flavor.


Pumpkin Bread


2 cups fresh pumpkin puree

4 eggs

1 cup vegetable oil

2/3 cup water

3 cups sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon pumpkin spice

1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)

1/4 cup cranberries (optional)


1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour two inch loaf pans. (Or use mini loaf pans)

2.In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, water, sugar and vanilla until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger and pumpkin spice. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pecans may be added at this point. Pour into the prepared pans.

3.Bake for about 50 minutes in the preheated oven. Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Help us Share The Season and hold a Community Bake Sale in your community.


If your interested in becoming a part of our team, donating on behalf of our team or would like futher information on how you can participate, please contact

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Tags: Autumn Events, , Harvest Festival Activities, Pumpkin Patch

October Fall Harvest Festivals-A Great Family Festival

Posted on 12 October 2009 by noelskitchen

Welcome to Loma Rica

October Fall Harvest Festivals

This past weekend we took a break from our normal routines and decided to spend a day with the kids enjoying the beautiful fall weather. We celebrated the day at Loma Rica Ranch at their 5th annual Harvest Festival.

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There is nothing like experiencing fall in the Sierra Foothills. The scenery view is beautiful with colors of red, orange and yellow.

2009_Harvest_Festival_Poster_thumb      A Great Family Festival

Loma Rica Ranch is a certified Organic Farm that offers rows of heirloom vegetables, berries and fruit trees. The Ranch offers visitors the opportunity to enjoy local produce.

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The festival offered a variety of fun fall attractions for the whole family including pumpkin picking, wagon rides, face painting, a kid-friendly haunted house, a corn maze, hay fort and even a zipline for the kids. There were lots of crafts people and artists, LIVE music and tons of free games and craft activities!

Children of all ages enjoyed feeding the farm animals at the petting zoo and riding the ponies. Our kids enjoyed getting lost in the twisted paths through the hay maze and found themselves on top of hay mountain. Later we were more adventurous to escape out of the corn maze.

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And I can’t forget the food-some of the best of Nevada County! The kids enjoyed good old fashioned hot dogs from The Top Dog and my husband and I enjoyed gourmet southwestern wraps from Coloma Wraps. These gourmet wraps were an organic California fusion style wrap withseasoned beef, chichen or tofu, fresh tomato salsa, black bean corn salsa, green leaf lettuce, red cabbage and a ”special” sauce on a whole wheat flour tortilla. 

We spent hours enjoying the celebration and srolling through the booths.


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Nevada County Bakers Call To Action: There Is Strength In Numbers

Posted on 18 August 2009 by noelskitchen

Great American Bake Sale

After nearly months of planning and deciding, our 2nd Annual Great American Bake Sale is coming up this weekend! Saturday will be a Spectacular day of events- our Nevada County Bakers will be selling homemade, nutritious baked goods at Pioneer Park in Nevada City and members of the community will be participating in the Food Bank’s Race To End Hunger . The 5K/10K runs and 5K walk begin simultaneously and start and end at Pioneer Park Parking Lot (Park Ave.). Scenic course leads runners/walkers through Nevada City, to American Hill and out Old Downieville Hwy. There will be Food, Fun and Festivities for everyone after the event!

I feel blessed to have the opportunity to be able to teach families in the community how to use food and cooking as a means of performing a great community service.

Fighting Childhood Hunger

The fact of the matter is, every night one out of six children go to bed and wonder when their next meal will come. Many people don’t realize that hunger is a real problem in the United States. Statistics show that 12.4 million children go hungry. That’s one in six.

The biggest need in our community is financial support. We need the help of our community in joining together throughout Nevada County.

It’s a fantastic sense of accomplishment, knowing that we will make a difference to hungry children in our community. So join us in making a difference in the lives of so many, there is strength in numbers.

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