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Wednesday, October 29, 2014


Claire's in charge of making cupcakes this year for dance.  I suggested these and got a shrug.  She's WAY more creative than I am so I'll post what she comes up with but it will be too late for you to do, So, here's a blast from the past to get your spooky on.

What you'll need:

Cake Mix made according to directions for cupcakes
24 Large Marshmallows
1 Bag of Green Chocolate Melts from Michael's
48 Green Tic Tacs
Can of Chocolate Frosting

Melt your chocolate melts in the microwave for 1 minute. Stir, stir and stir some more. Typically it will look like it's going to be lumpy but if you keep stirring the melts will in fact melt. If they are still chunky, try another 15 seconds. The thing with chocolate melts is you don't want to over cook, or it will dry up and you won't be able to dip. The "safest" way to melt the chocolate melts in a double boiler. I am not a fan of that process because it takes a LOT longer. But if you want to be "safe", try that route.

So, you've got your chocolate melted. I used a wooden skewer and poked the marshmallow and then dipped it like fondue and tap, tap, tap the stick against the side of the pan to get the extra choocolate off. Then gently pushed the marshmallow off onto wax paper, push from the top because you'll be covering that up with frosting. Sorry about not having photos of that process but my trusty assistant wasn't feeling well. Immediately push a tic tac into each side of the head and allow to cool. If you want to use a spoon, you can do that instead. Decorate the face of Frank.

When the heads are dry, frost your cupcakes. Push a Frank head into each cupcake and pipe some hair on. I used a leaf tip, but you can use any tip you want.

In hind sight, I would put them so they are standing up to dry so Frank doesn't get a flat back of his head.
Make the scary face!

Pipe on the hair...All done and ready for fun!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Blender Chocolate Mousse

I found this recipe here and thought, "it can't be this easy and that good", well..YES, it can!  YUMMY, yummy!  My kids thought it tasted a little too sharp so I might use half milk chocolate chips for them next time but the dark chocolate lover in me, loved it as is.

Here's what you'll need:

1 C semisweet chocolate chips
1 egg, room temperature
1 teaspoon coffee liqueur or vanilla extract (I used Kahlua)
1 C heavy cream
Fresh whipped cream (optional)
1/2 cup fresh berries (optional)
Directions:Place chocolate chips, egg and coffee liqueur or vanilla in blender and chop. Heat cream until very hot and small bubbles appear at edge. Carefully pour hot cream into the blender. Blend until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Pour into dessert dishes or pretty wine or martini glasses. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until it firms up a bit. Serve with fresh berries and/or whipped cream on top. Makes enough for 2 to 3 servings depending on the size of the dish.

Your cream is ready to come off and pour into blender.

Cover with seran and chill.  I thought that was easier than individual serving dishes.

I opted for caramel sauce instead of berries and cream.  Nice little drizzle on the bottom.

And a little more on top.


Friday, October 24, 2014

Party Pumpkin

I have NO idea why this posted sideways?!?  At any rate, you get the idea.  This a fun center piece to your Halloween party buffet table. 
Give your pumpkin a good wash.  Let the kids decorate a face and give the pumpkin some hair with salami and cheese stuck with fancy toothpicks.  You could get all healthy and do vegetables or something else but that's not how we roll around these parts on Halloween!


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Did ya miss me?!

It's a my FAVORITE month so I had to start blogging again!! How would you know my awesome trick to pumpkin carving if I stayed away longer??  I wanted to get you excited to carve your pumpkins!!
I put this tip on a couple of years ago but wanted to do it again because it makes life SO much easier!! Cut the bottom out of the pumpkin. Scoop out seeds with a big spoon, a scoop or your hands. Lots of room to move around now AND you don't have to worry about the bottom of the pumpkin not being level. Put candle under on ground and put pumpkin on top. No more burnt fingers trying to get the candle lit too:)

Monday, June 16, 2014

Fruit Salsa

REPEAT recipe but totally yummy and perfect for summer!

Here's what you'll need

1 C finely chopped Strawberries
1 med Orange peeled and finely chopped
3 Kiwi, peeled and finely chopped
8 oz can crushed pineapple drained or 1/2 C fresh
1/2 c finely sliced/chopped green onions ~ 1 bunch
1/4 C each chopped yellow and green pepper
1 T lemon or lime juice
1 fresh jalapeno seeded and chopped ~ optional, I don't use
Combine and chill 6-24 ihours, if chilling for more than 6, leave strawberries out until right before serving. Makes 3 cups

12 8" flour tortillas
1/2 C Sugar
1 t ground cinnamon ~ I used a bit more
1/4 C melted butter

Combine sugar and cinnamon. Brush tortillas with butter and sprinkle with sugar mix. Cut into 8 wedges, spread on baking sheet and bake at 350 for 5-10 minutes until dry and crisp. Cool and store in airtight container for 4 days or 3 weeks in freezer.
I used canned crushed pineapple. Make sure you drain it.
Chopped orange. Throw it in the bowl.
Chopped Kiwi, throw it in the bowl.
Chopped onion, throw it in the bowl.
Chopped peppers, throw them in the bowl.
Chopped Strawberries, throw them in the bowl. Squeeze your lime juice in and give it a stir.

Let's make the chips. Brush melted butter on flour tortillas, sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar mix.
Cut into triangles with a pizza cutter.
Bake at 350 for 5-10 minutes until dry and crisp. Do NOT let them cool on the baking sheet, the sugar causes them to stick as they cool

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Daddy Daughter Dance

Craig has taken Claire to Daddy Daughter Dances a few times at church and they always came home with smiles.  But today was something a little more fun.  Craig PARTICIPATED IN a dance at Claire's spring show.  They had a couple hour practice on Saturday, a dress rehearsal on Sunday before the show and then the big performance (two actually because we have two shows).

Craig was SUPER nervous.  This is SO far out of his comfort zone that I actually felt a little bad for him.  I was also more than a little jealous, because he got to have that "I'll never forget when.." moment with Claire.  But that jealousy quickly vanished as I snapped photos (soon to come) and saw them completely enjoying the moment and having a BLAST together. 

Here's the performance.  Craig did a great job and he didn't drop her, which was a little bit of a concern;)

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Tres Leches Cake

I found this in my draft file.  I have no idea what happened to the photos but thought I might as well post especially since Cinco de Mayo is right around the corner.  I'll add photos when I make this next time.  Yep, another Pioneer Woman recipe. I read about this on her blog forever ago and it intrigued me. I ran across another woman who had made it and thought I'd give it a go.

Reminded me of the jello cake my Mom made in my youth:)

But back to the Tres Leches cake. I made it with only a couple minor changes for our family spring fling and people liked it. The brownie fruit pizza was a bigger hit, but maybe we're a chocolate family?? I brought the leftovers to work and had a Hispanic woman try it and she said, "YUM, good job and you aren't even Spanish"?

My cousin Melanie said that she used a can of coconut milk in place of the Evaporated milk and added a touch of Malibu Rum for a grown up version of this cake, I might try that the next time.

At any rate, this is a solid recipe and really very easy so give it a try.

1 C Flour
1-½ t Baking Powder
¼ t Salt
5 whole Eggs Divided
1 C Sugar, Divided
1 t Vanilla
⅓ C Milk ~ I used 2%
1 can Evaporated Milk
1 can Sweetened, Condensed Milk
¼ C Heavy Cream
1 pint Heavy Cream, For Whipping
1/3 C Powdered Sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 13 inch pan liberally until coated.

Separate eggs into two different bowls.

Beat egg yolks with 3/4 cup sugar on high speed until yolks are pale yellow. Stir in milk and vanilla. Add flour, baking powder and salt and stir very gently until combined.

Beat egg whites on high speed until soft peaks form. With the mixer on, pour in remaining 1/4 cup sugar and beat until egg whites are stiff.

Fold egg white mixture into the batter very gently until just combined. Pour into prepared pan and spread to even out the surface.

Bake for 25 to 35 minutes (her directions said 35-45 min but my cake only took 25 until it was done) or until a toothpick comes out clean. Turn cake out onto a rimmed platter and allow to cool~I didn't turn my cake out, I left it in the pan for easy transport.

Combine condensed milk, evaporated milk, and heavy cream in a small pitcher or bowl. When cake is cool, pierce the surface with a fork several times. Slowly drizzle all but about 1 cup of the milk mixture—try to get as much around the edges of the cake as you can~I didn't read the "all but 1 C", I dumped it all on. It was still tasty, just a little wet, "I" might like it better following that rule.

Allow the cake to absorb the milk mixture for 30 minutes. To ice the cake, whip 1 pint heavy cream with 1/3 C of powdered sugar until thick and spreadable.
Spread over the surface of the cake. Decorate cake with whole or chopped maraschino cherries. Cut into squares and serve