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Showing posts from January, 2016

Perfect Rice Krispies Treats

Rice Krispies Treats have long been a favorite dessert of mine. They are classic and delicious, which begs the question, can they really be improved upon? Yes, yes they can. The method is very simple - additional mini marshmallows are added in at the last moment which create pockets of delicious marshmallow goodness throughout. The recipe comes from one of my favorite blogs of all time, Cookies and Cups . Enjoy!

Spinach Salad with Hot Bacon Dressing

Hot Bacon Dressing has got to be one of the best ways to dress a spinach salad. The tang from the vinegar is offset by the sugar, which combines oh so well with bacon and sauteed onions. There are not many better ways to eat up a ton of spinach than to top it with this Hot Bacon Dressing. Enjoy!

Crostini with Fontina, Prosciutto and Fig Jam

Toasted crostini is topped with cheese, rich fig jam, then topped with a slice of delicious Proscuitto. This is a great last minute appetizer, or let's be real, a great last minute lunch or dinner too. Enjoy!

Pink Cherry Fluff

Fluff fruit salads are a potluck staple and loved by many. I tweaked a recipe from Penny Pincher Jenny to create this super light and delicious Cherry Fluff. I don't mind cottage cheese in this style of dessert, but I did reduce the overall amount by half, using one cup instead of two. I felt that this kept the fluff nice and light and not too 'chewy.' I was extremely pleased with both the taste and texture of this dessert. My mind is imagining all sorts of other Jell-O flavors and fruits to use to make variations. If you prefer not to use Cool Whip, or aren't able to get it where you live, a good substitute is Dream Whip. See my notes for directions on how to use it in this recipe. Enjoy!

Sugared Pecans Stuffed with Gorgonzola Filling

Sweet and spicy sugars pecans stuffed with a gorgonzola filling. This unique little appetizer has it all, crunch, creaminess, spice and sweetness. I would recommend making only as many as you think you will need, as the leftover bites didn't hold up terribly well for me. If you do have leftovers, I would suggest lining a plate with a paper towel and laying the bites out in a single layer, then covering. This recipe makes a lot, so if you are serving this for a smaller get together, I would consider halving the recipe. Enjoy!

Seven Layer Salad

Seven Layer Salad is a classic side dish at many potlucks and get togethers. Our family recipe, Mom's Layered Pea Salad , is still my favorite recipe for it of all time, but it is nice to change things up every once in a while. I took an idea I saw over at Pioneer Woman to add a touch of sour cream to the mayo. It gave it a bit of a tangy flavor. I also added a spoonful of sugar to the dressing, as I really enjoy that in layered salads. As for the remaining vegetables, add what you like, skip what you don't. It isn't a fussy salad. Remember to chill it for a few hours before serving to let the flavors develop. Enjoy!

Soft Sprinkle Pudding Cookies

Soft vanilla pudding cookies packed with delightful sprinkles. When I make cookies, I almost always visit the blog Cookies and Cups . Shelly has the best cookies around. She also has a cookbook coming out which I pre-ordered the moment I heard it was available to order. Love her and her recipes. Back to the cookies! Be sure to add the extra egg yolk or your dough will be too dry. I learned that the hard way when I misread the original recipe. You definitely don't want to skip it. I used half basic rainbow jimmies and half  Birthday Party Sprinkle Medley from the Sweetapolita Sprinkle Shop . If you haven't picked up a large cookie scoop online or in a store, it is perfect for recipes like this. I bought mine a year or two ago and I absolutely love it. The one linked is the exact one I got, which is 1.5 Tablespoons. If you want to have exactly 2 Tablespoons, which is what this recipe calls for, here is a link to one . With all that shopping stuff done, bake u

Hissy Fit Dip

Hissy Fit Dip. Legend has it that one gal famous for this dip neglected to bring it to a party and all her friends had a big ol' hissy fit about it. One of my long time favorite bloggers, Steph at Plain Chicken , posted this recipe for Hissy Fit Dip at her blog a while back. I can't rave enough about her site. It has delicious, easy to prepare recipes with awesome food photography. Be sure to hop over to her site and check them out. Now, onto the recipe. I made this Christmas Eve to enjoy while watching The Christmas Story , an annual movie tradition that I'm sure a few of you practice as well. I served it with fritos scoops, but it would also be great with tortilla chip scoops as well. It isn't exactly pretty but it tastes awesome! Total comfort food. Enjoy!

Easy Rhubarb Sweet Rolls

Thanks to my big brother, I have quite a few large bags of rhubarb in my freezer. Thank goodness for that, because the last year or two there has not been any rhubarb to be found at my local grocery stores. I'm not sure why that is, but it is nowhere to be found. These sweet and tart rolls are a cinch to make, albeit a little messy. Be sure to line your baking pan with parchment paper to make clean up a breeze and it also ensures that the rolls don't stick. Pre-cut parchment paper is one of my favorite kitchen indulgences. They are just so handy. The recipe calls for a tube of crescent rolls. Normally I am not a fan of canned crescent dough, but with this recipe it works out perfectly. Saves you a bunch of time and I always seem to have an extra tube or two in the fridge needing to be used up. These are best served the same day they are made. I made my glaze fairly thick, but feel free to make it thinner if you prefer. Many thanks to Young, Broke and Hungry for

Banana Cake with Caramel Frosting

The problem of what to do with the ripe bananas sitting on the counter is one that we have often at my house. Needing to use up a few, I made this moist banana cake from Cooking with Carlee . If you have the patience, I found that this cake tasted even more wonderful on the third or forth day. So moist and the flavor was just fantastic. I kept leftovers wrapped up on the counter. The frosting does stick to foil or cling wrap so you may want to make sure it isn't touching the top of your cake. So very good and the kiddos absolutely loved it. Enjoy!

Simply the Best Shredded Beef Enchiladas

While I have a very quick cheese enchilada recipe that I love, I was so tempted to make these Shredded Beef Enchiladas from Mrs. Happy Homemaker , who titled them as "The BEST EVER." They lived up to the name, that is for sure. The homemade enchilada sauce was fantastic and the shredded beef was divine. An awesome meal, all in all. Enjoy!

Milk Chocolate Mint Nanaimo Bars

Chocolate and mint lovers need to try out these delicious no-bake nanaimo bars. I tried regular nanaimo bars for the first time last year. Delicious! The filling is made with  custard powder , which can be found in the baking aisle of grocery stores, or on Amazon . I really enjoyed these sweet little treats. They are no-bake which makes them even easier. Enjoy!

Smoked Salmon Dip with Bagel Chips

With smoked salmon, capers and red onion, this dip is a twist on the classic bagel and lox. Personally I would err on the side of leaving this dip a bit too chunky than too smooth, but that is my preference.  Serve this with bagel chips and you are all set to go. Enjoy!

Ranch Pretzels

These Ranch Pretzels were my second pretzel treat that I made for gift baskets this past Christmas. They are addictive! Super simple to make and this recipe makes a bunch. Fill up a bowl and set them out at your next party, they are delish. Enjoy!

Malted Pretzel Crunch

So early into 2016 and I have a top recipe of the year -- this Malted Pretzel Crunch. If you are a fan of the flavor of malt, which my mom and I happen to love, you should definitely try this recipe out. Crunchy, buttery, sweet and malty. Enjoy!

Summer Sausage and Cheese Spread Delights

At our Christmas party I wanted to be sure to have appetizers that picky eaters would enjoy (I'm looking at you, children of our family). This quick and easy appetizer was a hit with kids and adults alike. It is quite tasty and is a great last minute recipe. Three simple ingredients: summer sausage, cheddar spread and crackers. The cheddar spread we found was refrigerated and in the gourmet cheese section of the grocery store. Merkts is a great brand of cheese spread, available in many flavors. FYI, the cheddar spread I am talking about is not the same product as a cheez whiz. Easy and delicious. Enjoy!

Mozzarella Shrimp Bites

Another popular appetizer from Christmas were these Mozzarella Shrimp Bites. The phyllo shells provide a nice crunchy shell to hold a creamy shrimp filling. I would urge you to taste the filling before adding it to the shells to see if you want to add extra seasoning. Everything is cooked at this point, so taste away and see what you think. For the recipe below, I have adjusted the seasonings and increased them, as I found that the original recipe had almost no flavor to the filling. The recipe below reflects the changes I made. Delicious, creamy shrimp filling in crunchy little phyllo shells. A perfect party appetizer. Enjoy!

Betty Crocker Classic Spritz Cookies

Buttery, crisp and delicious. It is hard to go wrong with the classic Spritz Cookie, recipe courtesy of Betty Crocker. The original recipe notes that you can use either almond or vanilla for flavoring, but we only use vanilla, as the almond can be overpowering. Decorate with cherries, colored sugar and the like. We also decorated with Very Very Strawberry Flavored Sugar from King Arthur Flour which tasted fantastic. So festive and pretty. Enjoy!