Glass of creamy breakfast smoothie with berries

Delicious Berry Cheesecake Smoothie

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Glass of creamy breakfast smoothie with berries

A creamy smoothie that tastes similar to cheesecake with berry topping

I dislike pretty much all breakfast foods…but now Berry Cheesecake Breakfast Smoothie, that’s alright!

Just imagine a thick and creamy Cheesecake smoothie with frozen berries to taste like our favorite dessert?

Can you raise your hand to a  YES? Of course we would to the glorious Berry Cheesecake Breakfast Smoothie!

Besides the amazing thick consistency, the secret which gives the Berry Cheesecake Breakfast Smoothie the fabulous flavor of cheesecake; it’s awesome:)

Well, as I was saying, I really I don’t like eggs cooked in any way, shape, or fashion. And believe me, ‘Sam I Am’ has tried:) I don’t care for the traditional breakfast fare either, though I’ve made plenty of it for my crew over the years.  I’m actually famous for my Grandma’s pancakes (and these I will eat a couple off of the griddle).

However, this amazing Breakfast Cheesecake Smoothie with berries is the best! I like to use frozen berries, they are easy to have on hand so I can make this drink up anytime.

When I blend up this smoothie with the fruit and fabulous Greek yogurt – see all the healthy in here? The taste of cheesecake shines through….yummy!

It only takes a couple of minutes, and a few ingredients to whip up for a terrific breakfast, a snack or just because you’re craving it like I do.  

Delicious Berry Cheesecake Smoothie


1 cup vanilla flavored Greek Yogurt

2/3 cup frozen berries, your taste

½ cup milk

2 Tbl. (2 oz.) cream cheese



In a food processor combine all the ingredients and pulse until it is well combined.Cheesecake SmoothieServe immediately.

Glass of creamy breakfast smoothie with berries

A creamy smoothie that tastes similar to cheesecake with berry topping

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2014, 2018

Carrie Groneman’s recipe adapted from,

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Tart with Fresh Fruit

Tart with Fresh Fruit

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Tart with Fresh Fruit

Fresh Fruit with a perfectly sweet glaze tops this sugar cookie crust that also has a layer of wonderful cream cheese goodness

My daughter Danitra came to visit and shared one of her favorite recipes with me. 

Oh heaven help me, I want to eat it for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert.  It has fruit, so it must be okay, right?  And the cream cheese layer of goodness, yummy!

Take this to a picnic, serve it to impress guests, to charm your sweetie or to treat yourself 🙂 



Tart with Glazed Fresh Fruit


Crust –

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1  1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1  1/2 sticks salted butter and softened to room temperature, not melted


Filling –

8 oz. cream cheese, softened to room temperature

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 tsp. vanilla extract


Topping –

Fresh strawberries, kiwi slices, blueberries, raspberries, blueberries    *use fresh fruit berries desired that are in season; approx. 3-5 cups depending on your desired amount


Simple Syrup –

3 cups water

1 cup granulated sugar


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

For the crust:  Cut the butter into slices and put into a food processor.Tart with Fresh Fruit 1Add in the powdered sugar and  flour Tart with Fresh Fruit 2

Pulse until the mixture forms a ball.

Tart with Fresh Fruit 3With your fingers press the dough into a 12-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Tart with Fresh Fruit 4

Be sure to push the crust into the indentations of the sides of the tart pan.

Tart with Fresh Fruit 5Pat until the crust is even.Tart with Fresh Fruit 6Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until very lightly browned. 

Set aside to cool.Tart with Fresh Fruit 7When cooled and ready to proceed, remove the bottom from the side ring, and also from the tart bottom pan if desired. Tart with Fresh Fruit 8

Place the crust on the plate or the platter you will be serving from.Tart with Fresh Fruit 9

Make a simple syrup

This is the glaze that goes on top of the fruit

Combine in a saucepan the sugar and water and stir. 

Turn on the heat to low and continue to stir until the mixture comes to a boil. Tart with Fresh Fruit 10

Cook until the mixture turns clear and the sugar is completely dissolved. 

This will take approximately 10 minutes.Tart with Fresh Fruit 11Check to be certain all the sugar crystals are gone; if not continue to boil. 

When finished, allow to cool to room temperature and set aside until ready to use. 

Any extra liquid can be poured into a tight sealing container and put into the refrigerator for usually 2-3 weeks.


For the cream cheese filling:

In a bowl, combine the cream cheese, granulated sugar and vanilla.Tart with Fresh Fruit 12

Mix until smooth.Tart with Fresh Fruit 13Pour all of the cream cheese mixture over the cooled crust.Tart with Fresh Fruit 14

Spread the mixture out evenly over the crust.
Tart with Fresh Fruit 15

Cut the strawberries into 1/4″ slices and place on paper toweling.  Tart with Fresh Fruit 16

Place paper towels on top of the strawberries to soak up any juices. 

This step will help prevent the tart crust from going soggy, as well as weeping of juices on the top of the tart.

Tart with Fresh Fruit 17Prepare kiwi slices following the same procedure as the strawberries to soak up any juices.

Wash and dry all fruit and have ready to begin BEFORE assembling tart.Tart with Fresh Fruit 18Arrange fruit, beginning around the outer edge of the crust, Tart with Fresh Fruit 19

Continuing all the way around the circle.Tart with Fresh Fruit 20Fill in as you desire using your fresh DRY fruit.Tart with Fresh Fruit 21Once the fruit is assembled on the tart, brush with the simple syrup to give a sheen, Tart with Fresh Fruit 22

It also serves as a bit of sweetener.Tart with Fresh Fruit 23Store the tart in the refrigerator.

Remove about 15 minutes before serving.Tart with Fresh Fruit 24Adapted from a Paula Deen recipe. Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2015

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Frosted Chicken Sandwich

Frosted Chicken Sandwich

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Frosted Chicken Sandwich

Frosted Chicken Sandwich

  Stan and I stopped at a restaurant and he ordered a chicken sandwich with something they called ‘Chicken Frosting’.  I HAD to replicate that amazing work of art.  We have longed for that sandwich for weeks now….so here is my version, and Stan says it is even better, which is quite a compliment.  When you have a bit of a food blog as I do, the critique is honest around my house:)   Drum roll—–I am pleased and thrilled to give you my own concoction of the Chicken Sandwich with Chicken Frosting and I can’t wait to make it again; neither can Stan, heehee.

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Thick bread or bun of your choice

Butter for toasting Poblano peppers, 

1/2 – 1  per sandwich 8 oz. cream cheese, softened to room temperature

1/4 cup honey Montreal Chicken Seasoning

Chicken breasts/cutlets/tenderloins; boneless and skinless

Pepper Jack cheese

Real Mayonnaise

Ripe tomatoes

Romaine lettuce (this type holds up on the sandwich)


Begin by roasting the Poblano peppers. 

This can be done in the oven on broil or on the grill outside.  If being done in the broiler, line a cookie sheet with tin foil for easier clean up.  Put the pan under the heat and watch closely. When the pepper is charred and very dark…   Frosted Chicken Sandwich 1

Frosted Chicken Sandwich 2Then turn onto another side and continue broiling until it is black and charred on all sides.   The same would be done on the grill; turning and charring on all sides.   Frosted Chicken Sandwich 3

Frosted Chicken Sandwich 4When the peppers are very dark and charred, wrap separately in plastic wrap and leave to cool down while continuing with the recipe. Frosted Chicken Sandwich 5

Make the ‘Chicken Frosting’. In a bowl cream together the cream cheese and the honey until well mixed and creamy.  Set aside.Frosted Chicken Sandwich 6Now for the chicken.  If you are using a thin cutlet or a thin tenderloin, you do not need to do anything for this step. If you are using a breast, you may need to cut in half if it is very large.  Put on a piece of parchment paper.  Place another piece of parchment on top.  Using a rolling pin, or a heavy pan, pound gently to make a thin cutlet, however do not tear or damage the meat.   Frosted Chicken Sandwich 7

Frosted Chicken Sandwich 8Place the meat, whether you have had to pound it or not, on layers of paper towels and dab the top with paper towels also to dry. Sprinkle the top lightly with Montreal Chicken Seasoning.Frosted Chicken Sandwich 9

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In a medium-hot fry pan add in oil and bring to a hot point.Frosted Chicken Sandwich 10Gently lay down the chicken and do not crowd the meat. Sprinkle this side lightly with the Montreal Chicken Seasoning.Frosted Chicken Sandwich 11When cooked on one side, turn and cook on the other side; making sure to cook through, but do not over cook – we don’t want dry meat.Frosted Chicken Sandwich 12When the meat is cooked, place on a plate and continue cooking.  For the Poblano Peppers, unwrap from the plastic wrap, carefully scrap off the outside charred layer.  Then open and scrap out the seeds and pull off the top.  Do this with all you have prepared. Set aside.Frosted Chicken Sandwich 13Now the fun begins!  On a griddle, or your fry pan, place cooked chicken, the size of your bread or bun and lay Pepper Jack cheese over top to melt.  I put a lid over it to help it get all melty and wonderful gooeyness.Frosted Chicken Sandwich 14

Frosted Chicken Sandwich 15

Meanwhile, spread a nice layer of butter on the outside of your slices of thick sliced bread OR the inside of your bun and set on griddle or fry pan to toast.
OK, for the CHICKEN FROSTING!  On one slice of your toasted bread or the bun GENEROUSLY spread a layer of the fabulous cream cheese and honey mixture – this stuff makes the sandwich!Frosted Chicken Sandwich 16On the other slice, spread a thin layer of real mayonnaise.  I’m usually a Miracle Whip girl, but you really do want to use real mayo so it compliments all the wonderful other components going on here.Frosted Chicken Sandwich 17To assemble:  On your bread, or bun, lay the chicken with the melted ooey, gooey melted cheese.  Next up is the roasted Poblano Pepper.Frosted Chicken Sandwich 18Slices of ripe tomato and then the crisp lettuce come up next.Frosted Chicken Sandwich 19Adorn with the other slice of bread or bun and there you have a masterpiece that could very well be in a museum – except, then they would have to have a snack bar, hee hee!  Hope you enjoy this one as much as we do; happy eating!Frosted Chicken Sandwich 20Carrie Groneman’s recipe, Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2015COOKBOOK - CFK Ad buttonDon’t miss out on additional yummy recipes!  Join for our newsletter by clicking HERE

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Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies

My friend Rachael told me about this intriguing recipe and sent it over with this description.  It’s really distinctive in flavor and so glad she is sharing with us!  Rachael:  “This is a recipe that my husband brought home from a work potluck years ago and said, “You have to make these!” I love them because they are sweet and savory. This recipe is for lovers of all things cream cheese! It is a soft cookie that bakes white on the top and is golden on the bottom. Using real butter is a must (I use to be cheap during college years and would bake with margarine all the time and have seen the error of my ways). Make up a batch of these and see if you like them as much as our family does.”

Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies


8 oz cream cheese, softened

1 cup butter, softened (2 sticks)

3/4 Cup sugar

3/4 Cup brown sugar

1 egg

1 tsp Vanilla

2 1/2 C flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

Bag of semi sweet chocolate chips



Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Combine softened cream cheese, butter, and sugars.Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip CookiesMix until well blended, light and fluffy.Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip CookiesBlend in egg and vanilla.Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip CookiesCream well.Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip CookiesIn a separate bowl combine dry ingredients.

Add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture and mix.   Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip CookiesStir in chocolate chips.Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies



Drop rounded spoons of dough on greased cookie sheet, lined with parchment or silpat sheet.Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip CookiesBake for 11-12 minutes.

Do not over bake (tops will be white and bottoms will be golden).Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip CookiesTouch the tops lightly, if they spring back they are done, but they should be white/light when cooked through.Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies

Make 5 delicious dozens!

If you don’t want to make all 5 dozen at a time, I have put it in the fridge for up to 3 days. 🙂Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies

Recipe from Rachael Coon, Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2015  

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Celery Buffalo Style

Celery Buffalo Style

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Celery Buffalo Style

Celery Buffalo Style

I am not usually a ‘hot wing girl’, too much work for a little bit of meat. And I don’t care for hot-hot sauce nor blue cheese, but this recipe worked like magic and I loved it!  A wonderful alternative over high-calorie appetizers or snacks and it takes care of those cravings with the burst of flavors.


Celery Buffalo Style


8 oz. neufchatel cheese*

5 oz. low fat blue cheese, crumbled

1 tsp. minced garlic

1/4 tsp. salt, or to taste

1 – 2 Tbl. Franks Hot Sauce

1 – 2 celery stalks, separated into ribs; cleaned, trimmed and each cut into 3 or 4 sections

Celery Buffalo Style 1


In a small bowl, using a mixer mix the cream cheese, blue cheese, garlic, salt and hot sauce mix well to combine until smooth.

To serve, stuff celery with the cream cheese mixture and serve with extra sauce for guests who want a bit more spice.

*Neufchatel cheese has less fat than cream cheese and I think it has a better taste and consistency than fat free cream cheese

Adapted slightly from Weight Watchers, Copyright Carrie Groneman, 2014

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Appetizers with Jalapeno Jelly

Appetizier Collage 1

 I have easy ideas to use the delish (can’t get enough of it) Jalapeno and Bell Pepper Jelly. 

Perfect for the holidays, parties, or a quick snack!

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Pumpkin Trifle, toffee, pumpkin bread, dessert

Amazing Pumpkin Creamy Toffee Trifle

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 Pumpkin Trifle

Pumpkin Bread Trifle

I wanted a trifle without whipped cream, or prepared topping so it could last longer without breaking down, and one that would not go soggy (I don’t care for soggy). 

I created this extravagant dessert that will satisfy even the most discriminating palate.


Amazing Pumpkin Creamy Toffee Trifle


2 loaves pumpkin bread, cubed click HERE for my recipe for moist delicious pumpkin bread

 1/4 cup caramel ice cream topping,plus 2-3 Tbl, if desired for garnish

1/2 cup toffee bits

8 oz. mascarpone cheese

8 oz. cream cheese, softened

8 oz. sweentened condensed milk


Trim a thin slice off each end of the pumpkin bread. 

Cut the bread into 1/2″ slices, then in half and into thirds as shown below. Pumpkin Trifle 2Placing 1 loaf of the pumpkin bread cubes in the bottom of the trifle dish.Pumpkin Trifle 3

In a stand-up mixer bowl, combine the mascarpone cheese and cream cheese.

Whip well for 5 minutes to cream and make it light and fluffy.

Add in the sweetened condensed milk and the 1/4 cup caramel topping and mix 3 minutes.

Spread half of the cheese mixture onto the cubed pumpkin bread

Sprinkle with ¼ cup of the toffee bits.Pumpkin Trifle 4Pour in the other loaf of pumpkin bread that has been cubed.

Spread the rest of the cream cheese mixture over the top of the bread, covering the top evenly as possible.

Sprinkle the rest of the toffee bits on the cream cheese mixture.

With a fork, drizzle the 2-3 tbl. of caramel sauce over the top to decorate if desired.Pumpkin Trifle 5Serves 6-12 generously (it’s very rich and ooohhh sssooo good)Pumpkin Trifle 6

Carrie Groneman’s recipe, Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2013

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Here is the Scrumptious Pumpkin Bread Recipe, click HERE

Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting

Pumpkin Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting

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Pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting

Homemade Pumpkin Cake


Do you like Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting?

You will really love this one!  

This Pumpkin Cake is tender to the last bite.

The cream cheese frosting pairs perfectly because it’s not too sweet and provides just the right balance for a terrific dessert. 

Make this for your family gathering, work party, the neighbors, any occassion will be just right for this Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting. 

Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting



4 eggs

1 cup brown sugar

2/3 cup granulated sugar

1 cup vegetable oil

15 oz. can pumpkin

2 cups flour

2 tsp. baking powder

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. nutmeg

½ tsp. ginger  



Preheat oven to 350 degrees. (325 degrees for glass pan)

Prepare a 9″x13″ cake pan by coating with spray release, OR even better to line with parchment and coat with spray release also.


Mix together the eggs, sugar, oil and pumpkin until well combined.pumpkin cakeIn a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, nutmeg and ginger.

Now, add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture and mix at low speed until thoroughly combined and the batter is smooth.pumpkin cake

Spread the batter into the prepared cake pan.   

Bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out almost clean when inserted into the middle.

TIP:  Let the cake rest for 10 minutes, then cover with plastic wrap and allow to cool completely. 

This holds in the moisture as the cake cools to make the cake tender and moist.  It does not cause the cake to become soggy.

pumpkin cake


When the cake has cooled, I like to put the cake into the freezer for 2 hours or up to 1 week if wrapped very well to prevent any other flavors to mix or ice to build up.  Then take out while frozen and frost.  This helps to keep the crumbs from getting into the frosting.

When you are ready to frost the Pumpkin Cake, whether just cooled, or frozen – 


Cream Cheese Frosting



8 oz. cream cheese, softened to room temperature

½ cup real butter, softened to room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar



Combine the cream cheese, butter and vanilla in a medium bowl, and mix until smooth.

Then add in the sugar and mix at low speed until  well combined and fluffy.pumpkin cakePlace the frosting in 3-4 rows across the cake to make it easier to spread the frosting, so as not to tear the delicate surface. pumpkin cake

Spread evenly.
Serve immediately.

If I am making this ahead to serve in several hours, or within a couple of weeks;  I like to put the frosted cake right into the freezer for 30 minutes to allow a thin crust to form on top of the frosting. This step prevents the plastic wrap from sticking to the frosting.  Then I can wrap it very well to store; again to prevent from other flavors to mix or ice to build up. 

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2013, 2018

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