Thursday, December 10, 2015

Christmas Tree Peanut Butter Blossoms

Loved the idea of decorating the chocolate kiss to look like a Christmas tree.  My kids loved the added sprinkles.  There is just something about sprinkles that excites my kiddos .

Recipe from: Java Cupcake

48 Hershey’s Kisses chocolate candies
½ cup shortening
¾ cup Peanut Butter
⅓ cup sugar
⅓ cup light brown sugar, packed
1 egg
2 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ sugar, for rolling
green frosting
red, green, & white holiday sprinkles

Preheat oven to 375°F and line cookie sheet with parchment paper. Remove wrappers from chocolates.
Beat shortening and peanut butter in large bowl until well blended.
Add ⅓ cup granulated sugar and brown sugar; beat until fluffy.
Add egg, milk and vanilla; beat well.
Stir together flour, baking soda and salt; gradually beat into peanut butter mixture.
Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll in sugar and place on prepared cookie sheet.
Bake 7-8 minutes or until lightly browned.
Immediately press a chocolate into center of each cookie; cookie will crack around edges. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely.

NOTE: Cookies must be completely cooled & chocolate hardened before decorating.

Starting at the base of the Hershey Kiss, pipe a line of frosting that swirls up & around to the top of the kiss.  Immediately sprinkle with holiday sprinkles.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Black Halloween Punch

We liked this punch better after it sat and the carbonation was pretty much gone, actually.  So I would make this ahead of time for us.  Plus the extra chill time makes it better! Serving it with some dry ice....serious Halloween fun!

Recipe from: Hip Hip Halloween

1 envelope grape kool-aid
1 envelope orange kool-aid
2 cups sugar
3 quarts of cold water
1 liter ginger ale

Mix kool-aid and sugar, add water and mix well.  Stir in ginger ale.  Chill and serve.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Dirt Pudding Cups

1 3.9-ounce package chocolate instant pudding
2 cups cold milk
8 ounces Cool Whip
Crushed oreos
Gummy worms

Mix milk with instant pudding.  Fold in cool whip.  Dish into serving cups.  Pour crushed oreos on top and top with a worm.  Chill until pudding is set.  

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Halloween Sandwiches

Sandwiches just got a little creepier at our house....

Monday, October 12, 2015

Mango Salsa

This salsa is both sweet and spicy, just what John was looking for when he asked for some Mango Salsa....

Recipe from: Spend with Pennies

1 large or 2 small mangoes, diced
1 red pepper, diced
⅓ cup red onion, minced
1 jalapeƱo, seeded & minced
½ lime, juiced
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 tsp olive oil
¼ tsp cumin
salt to taste

Combine all ingredients and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.

*Recipe said it would be good on fish or chicken, but ours didn't last long enough to try it.  Maybe next time :)

Monday, July 20, 2015

Wendy's Frosty CopyCat

This recipe is so simple and a perfect replicate of Wendy's frosty--which my family all love.  I know I can whip up a batch and have happy smiles all around. 


Half Gallon of Chocolate milk
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 tub (8 oz) Cool Whip

Mix all three ingredients together.  Freeze in Ice Cream Maker.  And go do something fun while it freezes....


Monday, July 13, 2015

Dark Chocolate Cream Pie

My kids wanted to make a chocolate cream pie.  I was worried about the crust being too sweet, but it was great.   The filling was super creamy and rich, and oh so good. 

Recipe from: CookiesCakesPiesOhMy

Chocolate Graham Cracker Crust:
1¹⁄3 cups graham cracker crumbs
3 Tbl unsweetened cocoa
1/3 cup brown sugar
5 Tbl butter, softened

Chocolate Cream Filling:
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 tsp salt
3 cups milk
4 egg yolks
1 cup dark chocolate chips
2 Tbl butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla

Cream Topping:
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 Tbl powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
dark chocolate, grated or shaved

Preheat oven to 375°.  Crust: Combine graham cracker crumbs, cocoa, sugar and butter until combined.  Press mixture into 9″ deep dish pie plate, over bottom and up sides.  Bake for 10 minutes.

Filling:  Combine brown sugar, cornstarch and salt in heavy saucepan, whisk until combined.  In small bowl whisk together milk and egg yolks.  Add milk mixture to saucepan slowly, whisking until mixture is smooth.  Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture starts to bubble and thicken, about 6-8 minutes.  Turn heat down to simmer and cook, whisking constantly, another minute more until thick.  Remove from heat and stir in dark chocolate chips, butter, and vanilla.  Beat several times while cooling.  Pour into crust and cover with plastic wrap or wax paper.  Chill until cold and set throughout, at least 4 hours.

Cream Topping:  Whip cream with electric mixer until soft peaks, add sugar and vanilla, continue whipping to stiff peaks.  Spread whipped cream over pie and garnish with dark chocolate.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Dutch Oven Brownies

So it turns out brownies are easy to cook in a dutch oven.   Yes, they were from a box and really simple, but this has boosted my confidence of dutch oven cooking.  So...expect to see some more dutch oven happenings!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Sprinkle Number Cake

I loved finding this simple idea for decorating a birthday cake.  It was perfect for my son's 2nd birthday.  There is something special about kids love them!

I cut a "2" out of freezer paper and laid it over the top of the cake.  I then pressed sprinkles into the frosting and brushed away loose sprinkles before removing the freezer paper stencil. 

Friday, May 15, 2015

"Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Bar" Cookies

Also known as: Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe
(Makes 3 dozen cookies)

One of my best friends moved away...she used to bring Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Bars to our house and we would have great visits.  So when we tried these cookies, that tasted quite similar, but in a circular cookie form, my mind drifted back to those fun days...

Recipe from: Six Sister Stuff

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup flour
1/2 cup quick oats
1 heaping cup of chocolate chips

Cream together butter and sugars.  Add peanut butter, egg, vanilla, salt and baking soda.  Mix in flour and oatmeal.  When it is all mixed gently mix in chocolate chips.  Bake 350 for 9 minutes. Grab a cold glass of milk!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Baymax Cake

Sugar sheets cut and topped on a white frosted cake to create a Baymax cake for my Big Hero Six fan...

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Easter Muddy Buddies

Muddy Buddies with Peanut Butter M&Ms for an Easter treat.  Super easy, tasty and cute!

Recipe adapted from: Life, Love and Sugar

1 box Rice Chex cereal
10 oz chocolate chips
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar (I used less) 
1 bag Peanut Butter M&Ms (or preferred Easter candy)

1. Put chex cereal into a large bowl.
2. Microwave chocolate chips, butter and peanut butter in a microwave safe bowl for about 1 minute. Stir.
3. Heat 30 seconds to a minute longer until mixture is fully melted and smooth.
4. Add chocolate mixture to cereal and stir to coat evenly.
5. Add powdered sugar and stir until evenly coated. Have patience and stir carefully to not break up the chex cereal too much.
6. Add the bag of M&Ms and stir gently. 

Monday, February 2, 2015

Sweet and Spicy Citrus Tilapia

I really enjoyed this fish.  It was a great balance of sweet and spicy.  I also like that tilapia has a mild fish taste and was moist. This was also an easy dinner to throw together!
John's Rating: 9
4 (6-ounce) tilapia fillets
1 orange, juiced
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice 
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil 
2 teaspoons lower-sodium soy sauce 
1/2 teaspoon salt 
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon black pepper 
1 pinch crushed red pepper
3 garlic cloves, crushed 

Combine orange juice and next 9 ingredients (through garlic); pour over fish. Let stand 15 minutes. Preheat oven to 400.  Cook 10 minutes, turn fish over in marinade and cook an additional 10 minutes.  Drizzle sauce over fish before serving. 

Monday, January 12, 2015

Lemon Meringue Pie

 John requested a lemon meringue pie....turns out it wasn't that bad to make and was quite tasty! 

Recipe from: Favorite Family Recipes

1 pre-baked pie crust
1 ½ c. sugar
½ c. cornstarch
¼ tsp. salt
2 ¼ c. water
1 Tbsp. grated lemon peel
4 egg yolks
3 Tbsp. butter
½ c. lemon juice

5 egg whites (at room temperature)
¼ tsp cream of tartar
½ c. sugar

In a medium-sized saucepot, bring sugar, cornstarch, salt, water, and lemon peel to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and mix in with wire whip 4 egg yolks. Return to heat for 1 minute stirring constantly. Remove from heat and whisk in 3 T. butter, then ½ c. lemon juice. Pour into pie crust and cool.

Meringue topping: In a mixing bowl, beat egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy. Gradually add ½ c. sugar beating until stiff peaks form.

Top pie with meringue and bake at 325 about 10 minutes or until meringue is lightly browned. Chill until set.