Dough Puncher Amateur

Adventures in an Amateur's Baking World

Taco Pasta, I know not a baked good, but it was delicious!

I was feeling like we needed something different for supper.  So I tried this recipe and it was amazing.  Everyone absolutely loved it.  Go ahead and try it!


1 pound Ground Beef

8-12 ounces Pasta Shells

1 small Onion

1 Garlic Clove

14 ounces Diced Tomatoes, drained

1 package Taco Seasoning

3 ounces Cream Cheese

1/2 cup Sour Cream

1/2 cup Cilantro, chopped (optional)


Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook pasta according to the package directions. Drain, reserving ½ cup of pasta water. Set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet or sauté pan, cook the ground meat and onions over medium-high heat. Add in the diced tomatoes, garlic and taco seasoning and let simmer over medium heat for about 3-5 minutes.

TIP: I used the entire taco seasoning packet, and I don’t know that I will next time. It was a bit overpowering, especially with using Ro-Tel. Consider cutting back on the seasoning packet.

Stir in the cooked pasta, cream cheese, sour cream and remaining pasta water. Continue stirring until the cream cheese is melted and the sauce is well blended. Simmer for a few minutes over medium heat to reduce the sauce, if needed.

Toss in the cilantro right before serving for some fresh color and flavor, if desired.


Sorry, all. Due to some unforeseen events, I am behind on my posting. I will post my Christmas pictures soon.


I know, I know… I already slacked!

I know you were all expecting the sugar cookies to be made but, well, things happened and I wasn’t able to bake them until today. So here you go. I will be decorating them after I get off work tomorrow.  Please leave any comments, suggestions, or even just hate comments. I’ll take any sort of criticism.

Here are the things I needed… The dough of course that was in the refrigerator since Saturday or so. The rolling pin (I just got this one, MY VERY FIRST one, about 3 months ago and I can’t believe I waited as long as I did to ever use one). Of course, the FLOUR for the ease of rolling.

I decided to use the Christmas Tree cutter I got at Michael’s… It’s a Wilton cutter that you can find on Wilton’s website, here.

I use Parchment Paper because it makes my life much easier when it comes to cookies sticking to the cookie sheets. The cookies don’t stick to the paper, but they do cook a little different, which to me seems a little better. But it’s all your preference. If you don’t use the paper, you can use aluminum foil or even lightly grease your sheets.

The nearly finished product. Stay tuned for my decoration tips and royal icing recipe tomorrow!

Thank you and sorry I slacked on the second day on the job!
Happy Baking!

Just a girl, trying to bake…

Yep, I know… Just another baking blog.  Well, I’m here to admit to you all that I’m no baker… I always try things and I fail EPICLY.  I’ve tried just about everything from Cake Pops, Brownies, Cakes from scratch, etc.  The only things I’m really good at are Chocolate Chip Cookies and Box Mix Cakes/Brownies.  So this is going to be where I share my trials and tribulations of baking.

I love baking.  I love being able to make something sweet for friends and family.

This is where I’m going to share my trials and tribulations and maybe give some other people like me (men and women) some advice of the things I find to be easy and fun.  I’m a visual learner, so I’m going to try to take pictures and put them on here as I go along.  I’ve done research on just about everything I’ve tried to bake… So of course I’ll be sharing those along the way as well.

At the time I decided to start this little adventure, I had already made some sugar cookie dough and it’s currently sitting in the refrigerator for an hour, but might be overnight. The recipe is pretty simple, but I added an ingredient to it as I found some things around the internet, that made me want to try it.  I will put my Sugar Cookie Recipe below and share where I found it from.  :)

Happy Baking! :)

Rolled Cut-Out Sugar Cookie Recipe

adapted from:
Prep Time: at least 1 hour, 20 minutes
Cooking Time: up to 8 minutes per batch
Makes approximately 5 dozen

1 1/2 cups butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract (my addition, so you don’t have to if you don’t want to)
5 cups all-purpose Flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

1. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugaar until smooth. Beat in eggs and extracts. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour (or overnight).

2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Roll out dough on floured surface 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes with any cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets (I use parchment paper, it’s amazing!).

3. Bake 6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.

**Note, please understand that baking time depends on your oven. For example, I only bake the cookies for 5 1/2 minutes otherwise my oven will burn them.

This is a picture of one of the cookies I made for Halloween this year. I will be baking the batch I made today, tomorrow, so stay tuned for pictures!