Game Day Oreo Truffles

IMG_20110205_214142.jpg

1 package of Oreos

1 8oz cream cheese

Milk Chocolate Almond Bark

White Chocolate (for drizzle)

**I tinted flaked coconut with green food coloring for the grass. Just throw the coconut into a ziplock, add a few drops of food coloring & shake, shake, shake.

*************

Crush 36 cookies to fine crumbs; place in medium bowl. Add cream cheese; mix until well blended. Shape mixture into football shapes & refrigerate for a few minutes.

Dip balls in chocolate; place on wax paper-covered baking sheet. Melt white chocolate chips in a plastic bag. You want the chocolate to be soft, but not too thin because you need to be able to pipe it. Cut tip off corner of the bag and pipe “laces” onto truffle.

Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour. Store leftover truffles, covered, in refrigerator.

Peanut Butter & Chocolate Drizzled Trail Mix

This is what happens when your friend asks you to bring “something snacky” to a gathering. I kind of just threw things together, but everyone was hovering over the bowl in the kitchen, so I think they liked it 😉

I wouldn’t really call this a “recipe” but here are the steps!

 

1 box of Chex Mix

16 oz dry-roasted peanuts

Reese’s Pieces

Peanut Butter

White Almond Bark

Small pretzel sticks (optional)

****************

Lay out two pieces of wax paper (it’s best to do this on a baking sheet) and split the box of Chex Mix between them. If you have pretzels, repeat this step with two additional pieces of wax paper. In two separate plastic bags, microwave a few blocks of almond bark & peanut butter until melted, but not runny.

Snip a small hole in one corner & drizzle one half of Chex Mix (and pretzels) with chocolate & the other with peanut butter.

Put baking sheets in fridge until chocolate & peanut butter have hardened completely.

img_20110205_191459img_20110205_191514img_20110205_191521

Break Chex Mix into small chunks. In a large bowl, add Chex Mix, Reese’s Pieces & peanuts and combine well.

img_20110205_192627img_20110205_192701

**If you’re doing this for a football game, you could add in colored sprinkles on top of the white chocolate. You could even substitute the Reese’s Pieces for M&Ms in team colors!

“Berried” Treasure Dessert

(Originally posted June 5, 2016)

I can’t even tell you how delectable this dessert is… we make it all the time during the summer. Yum yum yum!

berried-treasure

Crust:

1.5 cups graham crackers crumbs or 1.5 sleeves of graham crackers crushed

1/2 cup sugar

1/3 cup melted butter

Filling:

One 8 oz. softened cream cheese

1/4 cup of sugar

2 TBSP plus 2.5 cups of cold milk

(2) 16 oz. cool whip – thawed

(2) 1 pint of strawberries – quartered

(2) 1 pint blueberries

One 6 oz vanilla instant pudding (I used two packages of the 3.4 oz boxes)

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Mix all ingredients together until combined (Try not to faint from the heavenly aroma)

Allow to cool (you can stick it in the fridge to speed up the process)

Beat cream cheese with 1/4 cup sugar and 2 TBSP of milk until smooth; fold in 1/2 tub of Cool Whip.

Spread this over the already baked and cooled crust & sprinkle strawberries & blueberries on top.
berried-treasure-2

Mix the pudding packages (6oz) and 2.5 cups of milk; beat 1-2 minutes.

Pour the pudding mixture over the strawberries/berries and chill for several hours or overnight.
berried-treasure-3

Spread with additional Cool Whip & assorted berries.

berried-treasure-4

berried-treasure-5

berried-treasure-6

Grilled Chicken & Grape Tomato Basil Pasta

(Originally posted May 29, 2015)

During the summer, we have this all the time. Although it’s pasta, it’s light & delicious!

tomato-basil-pasta

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Nature’s Own seasoning, dried oregano and dried basil

kosher salt and fresh pepper

8 oz penne pasta

2 (pint) grape tomatoes, halved

6 cloves garlic, minced

parmesan cheese, grated

extra virgin olive oil

4 TBSP fresh basil, chopped

* * * * * * * * *

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.

Season chicken generously with Nature’s Own seasoning, oregano and basil. Heat a large skillet on high heat. Once heated, drizzle oil in pan and add chicken. Cook about 3-4 minutes, until cooked through. Remove chicken, dice and set aside.

Add pasta and cook according to package directions. Reserve 1/2-1 cup pasta water before draining.

While pasta cooks, add olive oil to skillet on high heat. Add garlic and sauté until golden brown (do not burn). Add tomatoes, salt and pepper, cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Sauté about 4-5 minutes. Use tongs to crush softened tomatoes – this will help create the sauce. When pasta is drained, add pasta to tomatoes and toss well. If pasta seems too dry, add some of the reserved pasta water. Add fresh basil and chicken and toss well. Serve and top with grated cheese.

Red, White & Blue Cheesecake Triple

(Originally posted May 28, 2016)

trifle

2 (3.4 oz) packages instant cheesecake flavored pudding mix

4 cups milk

Pre-made pound cake – cut or torn into bite-sized pieces

1 lb strawberries

2 containers blueberries

1 container blackberries

12 oz Cool Whip (or homemade whipped cream)

** you can sub the cheesecake pudding for anything – white chocolate or french vanilla would be yummy too

****************

Combine milk & pudding mix using your mixer according to package instructions.

Spread cake pieces into the bottom of the trifle dish – about half the cake.

Top with about 1/2 of the prepared pudding.

Top pudding with about 1/2 cup of each kind of berry.

Top berries with about other half of the Cool Whip.

Layer other half of cake, rest of pudding, remaining Cool Whip and decorate the top layer with strawberries, blueberries & blackberries.

Refrigerate for about 2-3 hours, until ready to serve.

trifle-2

In the Cookie Jar: Princess Peanut Butter Blossoms

 

These are the easiest cookies we make, Charlotte. You love adding the Hershey Kiss at the end 🙂 You’re on your way, my sweet girl.

peanut-butter-blossoms

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 cup creamy peanut butter

1 cup butter or margarine, softened

2 eggs

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

Additional granulated sugar (about 2 tablespoons)

About 7 dozen Hershey’s Kisses milk chocolates

**********

Heat oven to 375°F. In large bowl, beat 1/2 cup granulated sugar, the brown sugar, peanut butter, butter and eggs with electric mixer on medium speed, or mix with spoon. Stir in flour, baking soda and baking powder.

Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll in additional granulated sugar. Place about 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are light brown. Immediately press 1 chocolate candy in center of each cookie. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack.

 

 

 

In the Cookie Jar: Christmas Thin Mints

(Originally posted Dec 8, 2015)

These cookies are so yummy! They taste just like the Thin Mints the Girl Scouts sell, so you know it’s going to be a winner.

Thin Mints.png
18 Ritz Crackers

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted

1 tablespoon vegetable shortening, optional but recommended

3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
Assorted Christmas sprinkles

************

 

Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment wax paper.

In a shallow microwave-safe bowl, combine chocolate chips and shortening (the shortening helps the chocolate stay smooth when using it for dipping; it prevents that thick and gloppy, chocolate getting hard before you want it to phenomenon) and heat for 1 minute on high power to melt. Stir and heat in 10 to 15 second bursts until chocolate can be stirred very smooth.

To the melted chocolate add 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract and stir. If you prefer it mintier, add another 1/4 teaspoon.

 *Note: Mint extract is much, much more potent than vanilla extract; 1 teaspoon of mint extract has an extreme amount of potency compared with 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. You cannot un-do mint once added so be very, very careful to not over-do it.

Add 1 cracker to the chocolate, coat it, and remove it by lightly scooping it up from the underside with a fork, allowing excess chocolate to drain off through fork tines. Place cracker on parchment and repeat with all remaining crackers. If necessary, re-heat the chocolate in 10 to 15 second bursts if it starts getting too firm for smooth dipping. Sprinkle dipped crackers with assorted sprinkles. After all crackers have been dipped, place baking sheet in refrigerator.

Store extra Thin Mints in an airtight container in the refrigerator for many weeks. In the freezer, I estimate that these could be kept for 3 to 6 months successfully.