Four years ago I sat in my apartment in Houston ready and anxious to write my first recipe on A Zesty Bite. Back then all I had was a point and shoot camera, no editing software and basically 3 readers. Thanks to my family, friends and my awesome readers who supported me along the way, I now have readers from all over the world. Little did I know that I would not return to work and an office, but rather I’d be staying at home to continue my career with the blog.
Not only are we celebrating my four year blog anniversary, but I turn 30 today too! Yes, the big 30! It’s still funny to think that I created my precious blog baby on my actual birthday but it helps me remember the milestones.
I’m sharing this awesome chocolate chip pumpkin shortbread cookie sandwich recipe with you today along with some of my favorite things for a sweet little giveaway. Some of these items were sponsored and some I’m throwing in myself because I love you.
Picture via core kitchen
Core Kitchen – $200 in product giveaway
About:Core Kitchen is the premier destination for home chefs looking for fresh designs and modern kitchen solutions. Our collection includes time-saving tools, gadgets, knives, cutting boards, and accessories, all with a unique perspective. Keeping with our function meets design initiative; this line uses a wide range of materials in unique shapes, sizes and colors. Featuring tools made from nylon, silicone, and stainless steel, polypropylene cutting boards, and high carbon stainless steel knives, this collection has the right tool for any job. In addition, we are pleased to present a line of cast iron accessories, a playful update to a kitchen classic.
Opinion: We’ve currently been using the Core Kitchen knives and cutting board in our house for the past two weeks. I love the different color options that you get with the knives. They have been tested on apples, bread and different cuts of meat. They are perfect if you are looking for a good set of knives that don’t cost you a ton of money.
Picture via tieks
Tieks – A pair of tieks valued at $175 or gift cards valued at the same amount
Designer ballet flats made with fine Italian leathers. They are designed to fold in half so they are portable to carry in your purse.
Opinion: I currently own two pairs of these flats and I definitely put them through a lot of use. They are comfy, light and are perfect for a day of walking. They are a tab bit on the pricey side but I’ve gone through too many cheap flats that they will eventually make up the costs for the other ones. I’ve had them for 5 months now and I still speak highly of this brand. Plus they come in a lot of fun, colorful styles.
About: The perfect book for any home or professional cook. It breaks ingredients into sections displaying what other items or ingredients work well together.
Opinion: Everyone needs this book.
All three varieties of HALF TIME: Turkey & Cheese, Ham & Cheese, and Bologna & Cheese
A draw-your-own lunch bag
A set of permanent markers
About: Healthy portable lunches for kids. These halftime boxes are perfect for your kid to take to school for lunch. Each one comes with Applegate natural meats and cheeses (which have no artificial ingredients or preservatives, and are antibiotic- and hormone-free), Annie’s Homegrown crackers and snacks, and Stonyfield Organic YoKids Squeezers.
Opinion: Everything you see at the store for kids portable lunches is processed unhealthy foods. I wouldn’t mind giving Olivia any of the boxes they offer for her lunch or dinner. They did awesome pairing these brands together to ensure a good natural meal for kids.
In a mixing bowl cream the butter for two minutes. Then add in the sugar and mix for an additional minute. Slowly add in the vanilla and pumpkin. In a small bowl mix the flour and salt. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Do not over mix. Stir in the chocolate chip morsels by hand.
Place the dough in the middle of cling wrap forming a long circular tube. Make sure most of the air is out and that you wrap it up tightly. Place in the refrigerator or freezer until firm.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Remove dough and cut into 1/4 inch thick slices and place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place the cookies at least 1 inch apart. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes and then allow to cool for 2 minutes before placing on a wire rack to cool.
Place 1 teaspoon of nutella in the middle of a cookie. Spread it out lightly with a spatula and top with another shortbread cookie.
*Tip: If you want a smoother cookie slightly roll the dough before cooking to smooth it out.
Only US residents for the giveaway. If widget for giveaway is gone please click here.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post from Core Kitchen and Applegate. The other products for the giveaway are from ME.