Chocolate Fudge

Don’t worry, I am back! I was on vacation last weekend. That actually brings me to the idea for this Sunday’s post. We were in a lot of stores selling fudge so since being back home that is all I could think about. I decided to make some on my own and this recipe is so simple I couldn’t pass it up.

Ingredients

3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste

Directions

1. Line a square 8-inch baking pan with parchment paper and set aside.
2. Over low heat, in a medium sized pot, add the chocolate chips, condensed milk and salt, and stir with a wooden spoon until chips are melted.
3. Remove from heat and add the vanillas. (If you don’t have vanilla paste, just double up on the vanilla extract.)
4. Pour into the parchment lined baking pan and spread evenly. Refrigerate for 4 hours until firm.

The fudge is so good, who needs to buy it already made! I had some extra Heath Toffee pieces so I decided to throw them in when I was mixing in the vanilla extract. It gives the fudge a bit of a crunch and adds an extra flavor. I would say you could mix in anything you want before you pour it in the pan to let it set.

Enjoy!

Banana Bread

This is probably the easiest banana bread recipe ever. There are only 3 ingredients! I decided I would make mine to take up to Disney World with my family that is visiting from out of state. I made it gluten free so that my cousin would be able to have some. I have never made anything with gluten free anything so I was a bit nervous for how it would come out. Let’s see how it turned out!

Ingredients:

1 box yellow cake mix (I used the gluten free yellow cake mix)

3 bananas

2 eggs

Directions:

1. Mash up the 3 bananas and mix with the eggs.

2. Mix in the yellow cake mix

3. Bake for 40 minutes at 350.

 

Banana Bread

I think I should have mashed the bananas more, but I think it still came out just fine. Made my kitchen smell amazing. My cousin has given the seal of approval, it is very good!!

 

Enjoy!!

Pudding Pops

Sorry, the post is late today. It has been a very busy weekend with a kitchen under construction. Now this recipe is something everyone can make when they have no time and only a kitchen table to work on. It is so easy and only 2 ingredients!

Ingredients:

1 box pudding (your choice!)

2 cups of milk

Directions:

Mix 1 package pudding with 2 cups of milk.

Pour into popsicle molds.

Freeze. (I froze mine for 9 hours)

So easy and so very delicious!

Pudding Pops

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Enjoy!

Raspberry Crumb Bars

Happy Sunday! The weekend sure does fly by! Today I give you Raspberry Crumb Bars. I really enjoyed these and there aren’t a lot of ingredients. It is super easy to make and I think everyone will love them.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup rolled oats (old fashioned)
  • 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup raspberry jam, seedless if preferred

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8 by 8-inch baking dish with aluminum foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang of foil on two sides. Grease foil. (I used parchment paper so I didn’t have to grease anything)
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Stir in oats and brown sugar, and use clean fingertips as needed to break up brown sugar clumps. Add butter, and using fingertips, work butter into mixture until evenly moistened.
  • Add 2 cups of the oat mixture to the prepared baking dish and press into an even layer. Spread raspberry jam into an even layer over oat layer, coming within 1/4-inch of all edges. Sprinkle top evenly with remaining oat mixture, then slightly press into jam layer.
  • Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, about 34 – 38 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before cutting into squares. Store in an airtight container.
  • Recipe Source: adapted from allrecipes

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I used All Natural Red Raspberry Jam from Smuckers. You can use seedless if you prefer. I cut mine into 16 pieces and for my friends out there on weight watchers, that would be 4 pts +. If you cut them into 9 pieces that would be 5 pts +.  I think you could eat it for breakfast or dessert.

Raspberry Crumb Bars

Enjoy!

 

 

Double Feature: Ham and Bean Soup and Chocolate Chip Cookies

Happy First Day of June!!

Today I give you 2 recipes. Both of which came out good enough to eat, but not amazing. You all may have better luck, so let’s get on with it.

First up, Ham and Bean Soup. This one was kind of winged while at the grocery store, so not a lot of preparation went into it. It was also really easy to put throw together. I used a crock pot, so I dumped everything into it and let it do the work.

Ingredients:

16 ounces of beans

8 cups of water

Bone of ham (I used the leftover bone from the ham from Easter)

1/2 tsp of salt

1 cup chopped carrots

1/2 stalk of celery (chopped)

1 cup chopped onions

1 tsp minced garlic

1/2 tsp white ground pepper

2 bay leaves

Directions:

1. Pour water in crockpot.

2. Rinse beans before putting them in crockpot.

3. Add rest of ingredients.

4. I let it cook for a few hours and then cut off the rest of the ham off the bone and served without the bone.

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It was good! I would definitely give it a try.

 

Last but not least of the double feature, Chocolate Chip Cookies. I have been kind of craving some chocolate chip cookies lately, so I decided I should just make my own. Note to self: make sure you know how much flour you have BEFORE you are knee dip in blending everything together.

Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 sticks of butter,softened
  2. 1 cup of brown sugar, packed
  3. 1/2 cup of granulated sugar
  4. 2 large eggs
  5. 1 tbsp vanilla
  6. 1 tsp baking soda
  7. 1/2 tsp salt
  8. 2 cups of all purpose flour
  9. 2 cups of chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Combine your butter, sugar, and brown sugar in a medium sized bowl. Next blend with a mixer, your eggs and vanilla until thoroughly blended. Then add in your baking soda and salt. Slowly add in your flour until its all blended thoroughly. Last fold in your chocolate chips. Roll into 1 1/2 inch balls onto a lined with parchment paper baking sheet. Bake at 375 for 11-12 minutes.

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Ok, so this is a major fail on my part because I ran out of flour. Since I didn’t have all 2 cups of flour, it was too soft to roll into balls. I had to just use a spoon and drop them on the pan. They are pretty flat and I had to pay attention to the timing because they would burn if I cooked them the whole time.

They still taste good, they are a bit chewy, but definitely edible and enjoyable. Always check your ingredients before you start cooking!

 

Enjoy!

 

 

 

Cannoli Dip

First off, Happy Mother’s Day to all the mom’s out there! Most of us probably couldn’t make it through life without you, so thank you for all you do for us kids!

Since it is Mother’s Day, I wanted to make a dessert that I knew mom would love. I have actually never eaten a cannoli, and have no idea what it is supposed to taste like so I didn’t want to trust a recipe I found on the internet. Instead, my cousin in New Jersey has given me a great Cannoli Dip recipe!

Ingredients:

2 Cups Ricotta Cheese

8oz Cream Cheese

1 1/2 Cup Confectioners Sugar

1 Teaspoon Vanilla

1 Cup Mini Chocolate Chips

Directions:

Drain the Ricotta Cheese overnight in a cheese cloth (they sell them at Target or Bed Bath and Beyond). Mix Ricotta Cheese with the Cream Cheese, Sugar, Vanilla, and Chocolate Chips. Sprinkle some Chocolate Chips on top and chill until it’s time to eat. You can use broken up waffle cones to dip with. You can also buy a pie crust, cut small circles, sprinkle with cinnamon and coarse brown sugar and bake about 8 min.

Cannoli Dip

Very easy recipe, takes no time at all to make! Now, this being my first time trying it, I must say I can’t believe I have never eaten one before. This is so delicious! A little too much dairy for me, but who cares about that allergy anyways!

Thumbs up all around from the family on this one!

 

Enjoy!

Mexican Dip

This weekend, I traveled to Michigan for a First Communion, so I took the weekend off of cooking. My cousins however, did not take a weekend off and put on a great Communion party. We had a lot of great food and desserts. I am still full from the party yesterday.

My cousin has been making this Mexican Dip for as long as I can remember. It is a staple at every party she throws. It has always been a favorite dip of mine and I always eat way too much of it! Recipe Below:

Directions:

Mix 16oz of Sour Cream with 1 packet of Taco Seasoning of your choice. After you mix it, put it on the bottom of the dish. On top of the mixture layer cheese, shredded lettuce, tomatoes, and green onions. Very easy to make and very delicious!

Mexican Dip

My younger cousin has become quite the professional in the kitchen and made some dipped strawberries for the occasion. I think we can all agree they look a lot better than my “carrot” dipped strawberries from Easter. She must have done this before! She dipped them in chocolate and then used a spoon to splatter the white chocolate onto them.

Dipped Strawberries

Last, but not least, my cousins have their own Edible Arrangement Kit. You can all buy one at Bed, Bath, and Beyond. It really is very cool and looked very use to use! The kit comes with different shapes, but for the Communion, they chose stars. They came out great!

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Very good party all around, and thanks for letting me take a weekend off!

Enjoy!

Easter Sunday

Happy Easter everyone!

Easter is one of my favorite holidays, probably because we get to eat ham and augratin potatoes (my favorite meal ever!). There are always a ton of different desserts you can make too! For our Easter, we made 3 different desserts. Dirt Cups, Carrot Cake, and a Twinkie/Peep thing (I don’t know if that has an official name).

The dirt cups is the easiest dessert to make and all ages will love it. I added a little twist to it by dipping strawberries in orange chocolate to act as the carrot. The dirt cups just consist of chocolate pudding and oreos. You can crush as many oreos as you would like to put on top of the pudding. For the “carrot” I bought orange chocolate and melted it in a double boiler on the stove. Make sure to keep stirring throughout the melting process so the chocolate does not burn. Once chocolate was melted, I dipped the strawberries in and coated the whole strawberry. I let the strawberries sit in the fridge overnight and assembled them into the “dirt” this morning. I also added a little chocolate bunny!

Dirt Cups

 

 

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The Carrot Cake is nothing special, but the affect I wanted to display is we used the left over orange chocolate to make the decoration on top of the cake. I used boxed carrot cake and following the directions on the box. For the carrot decoration on top of the cake, we used the leftover chocolate and formed it into a carrot shape. Once formed, we put it in the freezer for a few minutes before putting on the cake. We used green sprinkles to make the stem. By we, I mean Mom. I made the cake though, she decorated it!

Carrot Cake

 

For the final dessert, which we are using them as place settings. Peeps driving a Twinkie car. For this, you will need Peeps, Twinkies, Pretzels, Marshmallows, and M&Ms. Just assemble like the picture to make it look like the Peep is driving a car. Dad even helped make these (I think he just wants to eat the Twinkies).

Peeps

 

Easter is definitely a team sport, as it is a lot of work to make all these fun desserts. So grab your team and get to work! I hope everyone has a great day with their families!

 

Enjoy!

 

Cronuts

Today there will not be a recipe, but more of a public service announcement. The Cronut is probably the most amazing combination ever made in food history. It is a Croissant Donut that has a cinnamon sugar coating. I finally got to try this amazingness at Epcot in Disney World yesterday.

For all my Michiganders out there, this tastes just like an apple orchard donut! This made me very happy since now I can have a taste of home in Florida. You can get this donut 2 ways, plain or topped with ice cream. We got it both ways, and since I can’t have ice cream, I let Dad tackle that one. It is hard to eat with a fork or spoon though. Can’t really cut into the Cronut very easily. I would suggest just eating the ice cream first and then picking up the Cronut and eat it with your hands.

CronutCronut with ice cream

Both ways are super delicious and there were a lot of people ordering them when we were in line. This is a MUST try. It is perfect for breakfast, dessert, or if you just want a snack. This doesn’t weigh you down like a normal donut does. So go to Disney World now, or for those New Yorkers, go to the bakery that sells them. These need to be eaten by all!!

Enjoy!

Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake

Happy Sunday everyone!! Hope everyone had a good weekend. This post is a little late because I needed to wait to serve it after dinner to get some opinions. I always have Disney on my brain and I have been looking at this recipe for weeks now and I figured it was time.

They serve this Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake at Liberty Tree Tavern in Magic Kingdom. I have never had it so I can’t compare the taste of my outcome to theirs, but I imagine it comes pretty close. We had a big family dinner tonight so I had a few more mouths to please. Everyone said they really liked it and some even had seconds! It is a very easy dessert to make. Recipe below!

Cake Bottom

Serves: 5-6
Prep Time: 10 min
Total Time: 10 min

Ingredients
1 box yellow cake mix
1 large egg
1 stick butter (softened)

Instructions
1. Mix ingredients.
2. Spread mixture evenly in greased baking pan.

Cake Top

Serves: 5-6
Prep Time: 15 min
Total Time: 50 min

Ingredients
8 ounces cream cheese (softened)
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla
1/4 cup butter
1 pound powdered sugar (sifted)
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1 cup Heath Bar pieces

Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2. Mix cream cheese until smooth.
3. Slowly add eggs and vanilla.
4. Add butter and mix well.
5. Add powdered sugar, slowly.
6. Add chocolate chips and toffee pieces.
7. Mix until ingredients are all just incorporated evenly — do not overmix!
8. Put on top of Cake Bottom ingredients in pan. (Usually a large muffin pan can work well for this.)
9. Bake for 35 minutes. Inside should just be slightly gooey, but not liquid.

I used an 8×8 pan and I am thinking it wasn’t the best idea. It took a lot longer to bake (an hour and 40 minutes). I definitely suggest you all use the muffin pan. On the outside it doesn’t look good (I don’t want to talk about it).

Toffee Cake

It did actually come out and was delicious!

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I served mine with ice cream, and I am sure the Liberty Tree Tavern does as well. It is very rich, so I suggest using the muffin pan because then the size is a bit smaller. Everyone should definitely try it!

Toffee Cake

Enjoy!!