Monday, October 22, 2012

Halloween Puppy Chow

Halloween is a fun time of year to try new treats. Our family loves the traditional puppy chow recipe, but I decided to try this one and mix things up. It was an instant hit and Olivia and her friends couldn't keep their hands out of the bowl!

White Puppy Chow
9 c Rice Chex cereal
1 c white chocolate chips
1//2 c peanut butter, creamy
1/4 c butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 c powdered sugar
1 bag candy corn candy

Chocolate Puppy Chow
9 c Chocolate Chex cereal
1 c semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 c peanut butter
1/4 c butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 c powdered sugar
1 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder
1 bag Reese's Pieces

Line two large cookie sheets with either wax or parchment paper. To make the white puppy chow, place rice cereal in a large bowl. In a small microwave proof bowl, melt chocolate, butter and peanut butter. Heat in microwave until melted and you can stir it smooth. Stir in vanilla extract in and then pour over cereal. Stir to coat cereal. (I like to use the giant ziploc bags for this step, dump in the powdered sugar, melted chocolate mixture, candy, cereal and shake). Place coated cereal on cookie sheet to cool.

For chocolate puppy chow follow the above steps but add unsweetened cocoa powder in with the powdered sugar. Place on cookie sheet to cool. Once both are cooled pour into ziploc bags and shake to mix both chocolate and white puppy chow mix. Makes 18 cups


SourceYour Cup of Cake

Friday, October 12, 2012

Pumpkin Brownies

Fall is my favorite time of year, I just wish that Florida HAD a fall! So instead of bundling up in sweaters and breaking out the boots, we are still wearing flip flops and shorts. The one thing I can do is start cooking with pumpkin and that always helps me get into the spirit of my favorite season. I came up with this recipe this morning and couldn't wait to taste these yummy treats. They are the perfect blend of spicy pumpkin alongside sweet rich chocolate, a perfect combo!

1 pkg Betty Crocker Pumpkin Spice Cookie Mix,
prepared according to directions
1 box brownie mix (9x13 size),
prepared according to directions
1/2 c milk chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Spray 9x13 pan with Pam. Mix up cookie dough and press into bottom of pan, sprinkle with chocolate chips. Next pour brownie batter over top of cookie dough. Bake for 25-30 minutes until set. Let cool, cut and enjoy!

Press cookie dough into pan
Sprinkle with chocolate chips
Pour brownie batter over top
Spread it out and bake


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Easy Chocolate Croissants

Olivia had a sleepover last night, no school today due to a Jewish holiday. Her and her girlfriends were headed to the beach but I wanted to make them something quick and tasty. I remembered I had a can of crescent rolls in the fridge and some chocolate chips in the pantry....done! The girls gobbled these up so quickly and then headed out the door to the beach.

1 can crescent rolls
1 c milk chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Unroll dough into triangles, place a small handful of chocolate chips at large end of triangle. Roll up and place on cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes. Take remaining chocolate chips and place in small ziploc bag and melt in microwave for about a minute. Snip off one end of bag and drizzle melted chocolate over hot croissants!
Serves 8

Friday, September 14, 2012

Buffalo Chicken Dip

We had a huge group of college students to the house last weekend and they devoured this dip. I'm always wary of trying a new recipe for a party, but this one didn't disappoint. I could have quadrupled it and we still would have run out. The heat from the buffalo sauce was mellowed by the ranch dressing. Now that football season is in full swing, it's time for you to make this for your next party! 

3 cups cooked and shredded chicken ( I had leftover smoked chicken in the house) 
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup Ranch dressing
1 cup Buffalo wing sauce 
1 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
blue cheese crumbles

Heat chicken and Buffalo sauce in a skillet over medium heat, until heated through. Make sure to break up the chicken so there are no big chunks. Stir in cream cheese and ranch dressing. Cook, stirring until well blended and warm. Mix in shredded cheese. Pour into a 9x13 dish and sprinkle with blue cheese crumbles and place in a 350 degree oven until cheese is melted. (15 min) Serve with chips, and celery for dipping; sliced baguettes would also be good for dipping.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Tailgate Cookies

It's football season again and what does that mean??? Tailgate time! These cookies are the perfect ones to bring along, there is something inside for everyone. Who doesn't love numerous kinds of chips and chocolate candies wedged into every corner of their dessert?!?!?! I found this recipe over on this fun blog and instantly had to make them, and my daughter's cheer team gave them two thumbs up. Now I'm making another DOUBLE batch for the fundraiser at school tomorrow! I decided that if I was going to make these I might as well really make them, so I doubled my recipe, but the one listed below is the single version.

1 c butter, softened
3/4 packed brown sugar
1/4 c white sugar
1 (3.5 ounce) instant vanilla pudding mix
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 c all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 c milk chocolate chips
1 c semi sweet chocolate chips
1/2 white chocolate chips
1/2 butterscotch chips
1/2 c M&M's
1/2 Reese's Pieces

Preheat oven to 350. In a large mixing bowl cream butter and sugars together. Add pudding, eggs and vanilla and combine. Mix flour and baking soda then add to creamed mixture and mix until incorporated. Fold in chocolate chips and candy.

Drop by TBSP onto a prepared cookie sheet ( I either line mine with parchment paper or a silpat mat. Slightly flatten balls of dough with hand and bake in oven for 10-12 minutes. Cool on wire racks.


Monday, September 3, 2012

Easy Cherry and Cream Cheese Danish

Cherry pie is my absolute favorite pie flavor...well if you don't count chocolate!! This is a fun and easy way to get your cherry fix in. These Danishes are quick and easy to make and boy do they taste good!
2 cans of crescent rolls
1 8oz package of cream cheese at room temp.
1/2 cup white sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
3/4 tsp vanilla
1 tsp sour cream
Cherry Pie filling (canned)
1 cup confectioner's sugar
1 tbsp milk
1 tbsp softened butter
Preheat the oven to 350.
Open the crescent rolls carefully to avoid unrolling or tearing the dough. You'll need to leave it in it's cylindrical shape. Slice the dough into pieces about 1/4 inch thick (as though you're slicing cookie dough). Place the slices on a cookie sheet and with your fingers press the center in to make an indentation for the cream cheese filling.
In a large mixing bowl, mix together the cream cheese, white sugar, lemon juice, vanilla and sour cream. Add a TBSP of pie filling, inside the indentation that you made to the dough, then add a TBSP of the mixture on top of the cherries.  Bake for 15 - 20 minutes.
While the danish are baking, you can make a quick royal icing to drizzle over the tops. Mix together the confectioner's sugar, milk and butter in a small bowl.  Use a spoon to drizzle it over the tops of the danish. Take the danish out of the oven and allow them to cool for 10-15 minutes before icing.
Slice crescent roll dough into 1/4 inch slices
Make a well in center with finger
Fill with a small amount of pie filling
Next add a tbsp of cream cheese mixture
Ready for the oven
15 minutes later they are golden  and ready
Mix up frosting
Drizzle over cooled Danishes


Monday, August 13, 2012

Green Salsa

I've always been threatened by tomatillos, don't ask me why, but they just looked scary. I mean they have a weird peel and look like under-ripe tomatoes. I decided to conquer my fears and I am so glad I did. This salsa is so tasty and quick, and it lasts in the fridge for up to a week. We made steak nachos last night and this was the perfect topping. ( I located the tomatillos in the produce department by the cilantro)

1 lb washed and peeled tomatillos
1/3 bunch cilantro
1 jalapeno pepper, seeds and all
1 thick slice red onion
1 garlic clove
1 ripe avocado
1 tsp salt

Place quartered tomatillos into bottom of blender. Next add remaining ingredients and turn blender on, blend until pureed. That is it! Simple and delicious. If you want it spicier add another jalapeno, if you want it thinner add more tomatillos.
Peeled, washed and quartered tomatillos
Drop into blender
Give it a whirl


Saturday, August 11, 2012

What I've been up to

I've been pretty busy the last few weeks on redecorating my daughter's room. I thought you'd like to see  how it turned out!

This is our last weekend of the summer, and I am incredibly sad that I will have to get on a regular sleep/cooking/cleaning/laundry schedule again.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Fried Ravioli

My middle child Simon spent the summer in Tennessee working at an outdoor adventure camp for kids; he loved every aspect of it! One of his favorite things about the camp was the night the cook made fried raviolis. He mentioned this to me the other day so I decided to recreate them for him. We were all pleased with how they came out, they were easy to make and so tasty. A perfect appetizer for a party, or for dinner, served with a big salad and crusty bread. 


Vegetable oil for frying
1 c milk
2 c Italian-style bread crumbs
1 box store -bought cheese ravioli (about 24)
1/4 c freshly grated Parmesan
1 jar marinara sauce, for dipping

Pour enough olive oil into a large frying pan to reach a depth of 2 inches. Heat the oil over medium heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 325 degrees F.
While the oil is heating, put the buttermilk and the bread crumbs in separate shallow bowls. Working in batches, dip ravioli in buttermilk to coat completely. Allow the excess buttermilk to drip back into the bowl. Dredge ravioli in the bread crumbs. Place the ravioli on a baking sheet, and continue with the remaining ravioli.
When the oil is hot, fry the ravioli in batches, turning occasionally, until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fried ravioli to paper towels to drain.

Place milk and breadcrumbs in separate bowls
Dunk raviolis in milk
Dredge in breadcrumbs
Place on cookie sheet 
Simon helping out
They fry very quickly, and puff up
Place on paper towel to drain
I crammed them into the pan
Top with parmesan cheese and serve with dipping sauce


Monday, July 16, 2012

Man Pleasing Chicken

I've been in Utah for the past few weeks on vacation, and let me tell you I've sure enjoyed it! Tonight was my last night and so my sister and I joined forces and made dinner. She introduced me to this awesome chicken recipe that she originally found on Pintrest. It was easy to make but oh so yummy! The sauce is reminiscent of McDonalds spicy mustard sauce for their chicken FAVORITE sauce!!

4 skinless boneless chicken breasts, or 6 skinless boneless  thighs
1 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 maple syrup (the real stuff)
2 TBSP rice wine vinegar
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 450. Mix mustard, syrup and rice wine vinegar in bowl. Salt and pepper chicken. Dip chicken pieces into mustard mixture and place on a foil lined cookie sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, flip chicken over and pour over remaining sauce. Cook for another 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving. Easy Peasy!! 

Mustard mixture before stirring
Salt and pepper chicken
Dip into mixture
Completely covering chicken in sauce
Place on foil lined baking sheet
Made Caprese salad to go along with dinner 
Ready for oven
Ready to eat


Adapted from Busy But Healthy