Sunday, January 30, 2011

Peanut Butter Cup Cookies

I had one last bag of Reese's Peanut Butter Bells still languishing in the pantry after Christmas.  It was either sit down and devour the entire bag while reading a juicy novel or bake something the entire family could enjoy.  I decided the latter was a healthier option for me!  I found this fantastic recipe in Goodness Gracious, Recipes for Good Food and Gracious Living.

2 1/4 cups flour
1/3 cup cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking soda  - typo!
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup butter
3/4 cup smooth peanut butter
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
10 oz. peanut butter cups, coarsely chopped
1 cup ( 6 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt.  In a large bowl, beat the butter, peanut butter, sugars, and vanilla until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs , one at a time, beating well after each addition until throroughly blended.  Stir in the dry ingredients until smooth. 

 Do you remember Linus's line in "It's The Great Pumpkin"?  "YOU DIDN'T TELL ME YOU WERE GOING TO KILL IT!"
That's what popped into my head when I began chopping up the cute little Christmas bells. 

Fold in the peanut butter cups and chocolate chips.  Spoon 2 tablespoons dough (Pampered Chef large cookie scoop is perfect for this) about 2 inches apart onto an ungreased baking sheet.  Bake until slightly firm to the touch, but not brown, 10-13 minutes.  Cool for a few minutes before transferring from the baking sheet to a wire rack to cool completely.  Makes about 3 dozen.

"For a serious sweet tooth, these cookies will not disappoint you"

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Friday, January 28, 2011

Recipe Roundup: Party Recipes

We're finishing up our Super Bowl recipe week with a collection of our past recipes that would also be great fixins to bring to a party.  Do you have any fabulous ideas to share?  Are you hosting a party this year or attending one?  Or just hanging out at a sports bar so that someone else can cook and clean up? :)


Spicy Bean Salsa

Black Bean Corn Salsa


Real Simple Personal Pizzas

Potato Chip Fingers

Hawaiian Beef Sliders

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Baked Coconut Shrimp

Lil Smokies in a Blanket

Nana Flora's Awesome Potato Salad

Black Bean and Mango Tostadas

Salad Rolls with Peanut Sauce

Caramel Apple Cupcakes

Gooey Caramel Corn

Peanut Clusters

Molasses Whoopie Pies

Peanut Butter Balls

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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Sliders

I have to admit something:  A big part of the reason that I like to cook semi-healthy is to support my sugar habit.  If I can whittle calories from savory foods, I won't even hesitate.  But, nearly all of my desserts are full-blown whirlwinds of sugar and fat and all the deliciousness those two nasty ingredients bring to the mixing bowl.  So, of course, when I found a recipe for a healthified version of buffalo wings, I jumped all over it.  

And then I forced our friends to guinea pig it with us over New Years.  Know what?  It's darn good.  Darn good!  It's all the yum of buffalo chicken without the skin and the deep-frying.  Plus, you get to make it in a crock pot, so it's pretty easy to haul to a Super Bowl party and serve up.  And then dig into the cookies and cupcakes.  You have my blessing :)


Healthier Buffalo Chicken Sliders
adapted from Allrecipes

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 8 oz. buffalo wing sauce
  • 1 oz. (or 1 1/2 Tbsp.) dry ranch salad dressing mix
  • low-sodium chicken broth

  • shredded cabbage
  • ranch dressing or bleu cheese dressing
10 small sandwich rolls or small buns, split

  • Place the chicken breasts into a slow cooker, with the wing sauce and the ranch dressing mix. Add enough chicken broth to almost cover the chicken.  Cover, and cook on Low for 6 hours (or High for 3 to 4 hours), flipping the chicken breasts over occasionally.

  • Once the chicken has cooked, shred the meat with two forks.  Cook for another 30 minutes or so, to allow the shredded chicken to soak up juices.  In a separate bowl, toss shredded cabbage with enough dressing to lightly coat.  Pile the meat onto the hoagie rolls, topping with the cabbage mixture, and additional dressing and hot sauce, if desired.  Makes 10-12 sliders.

Ingredient lineup:

Dump the hot sauce, ranch mix, and chicken broth into a crock pot.

 Shred the chicken with a fork and allow to soak up juices for half an hour.

Dig in!

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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Pull Apart Garlic Bread

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I'm sure you have figured out by now that I'm all about easy whenever possible.  Appetizers are no different.  The one I bring you today...think monkey bread only for garlic bread.  Yumm. 

Go Pack Go!


1 can of refrigerated biscuits
1 stick butter or margarine, melted
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 Tablespoon parsley

1.  Separate biscuites and then cut each biscuit in half.
2.  Mix garlic, parsley and margarine.
3.  Dip biscuits in mixture and then place into 9 inch pie plate.



4.  Bake 15 minutes at 400 degrees


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

What's the Name of That Recipe?

I am not even sure what the name of this recipe is...all I know it that it's good! My Great Aunt gave the recipe to my Aunt who gave it to I don't even have a clue where it came from. It's just So good that I had to share:

To get started lay out 2 packages of Philadelphia Creme cheese - they need to come to room temperature.

Start Draining 1 20-oz can of crushed pineapple.

Then get busy chopping:


Chop 1 bunch green onions,


3 colorful bell peppers,


1 medium red onion


and 2 handfuls of pecans.


I know that was a lot of chopping and your tired...but try to stick with me here...your almost to the finish line. Combine all of your hard word and stir to combine.

Then add Philadelphia Cream cheese and drained pineapple. You might be thinking to yourself that you can mix this with a too. But it's next to impossible.

So get your clean hands in there and mix like it's a meatloaf. I promise that even though it's gross...the pay off is going to be so yummy!


Serve with your favorite crackers at any function and I promise everyone will want this recipe! I mean who wouldn't want this little bite of heaven?



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Monday, January 24, 2011

Ariel's Salsa

Do you know I have NEVER made salsa?  Nope.  I buy it or my lovely daughter in-law makes it fresh and brings it family functions.  It was always one of those mystery recipes that I wanted to, but was never really driven to, try creating on my own. 

This January I created a list of foods I always wanted to try creating on my own.  Fresh Salsa was at the top of the list and with Super Bowl approaching the timing couldn't be better.  My daughter in-law, Ariel, passed her basic salsa recipe along to me, and it couldn't be simpler!

 You will need:
  1.  7-8 Vine Ripe tomatoes - chopped small  (I chose to use Roma because they were half the cost this week!)
  2. 1 Jalapeno pepper.  - minced fine (The day I shopped for ingredients I discovered my store didn't have any so I chose 1 Cubenelle pepper instead .)
  3. 1 Yellow onion - minced fine
  4. Tabasco Sauce  - To taste.
 I hand chopped the tomatoes because I like a big bite of tomatoes on my nachos and chopped the onion & pepper together in my mini Cuisinart. Yes I like it chunky.  :)

You can serve it fresh and it is very good this way. Ariel recommended. and I now agree, to let it set overnight to increase the flavor.  Drain in a fine sieve before storing in an air tight container and again before serving.
I warmed the tortilla chips in a 200 degree oven before indulging. Mmmmmmmmm......... So good! 

Who knew it was that simple?  I can't believe it took me this long to try preparing this.  One recipe crossed off my 'Want To Learn How' list.  Eleven more to go!
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