​Marshmallow of Delicious Death

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Marshmallow of Delicious Death


I make so many different holiday treat gifts that require time for the chocolate to set up, that results in some downtime. Downtime leaves me alone with my thoughts. Never a good thing. So during those downtimes I play around with goodies I have on hand. During one such playtime I made (deep voice echo) THE MARSHMALLOW OF DELICIOUS DEATH !
You will need: jumbo marshmallows, candy coat, chocolate chips, caramel pieces or bits, and pecan pieces.
I use Kraft caramel bits. If you prefer some other type of caramel, go for it. If you use caramel bits. Don’t forget to add a little water before melting. Unless you want to break a tooth. Milk will probably work in place of water. I forgot the water on my first batch. Even as I was stirring my melted caramel it didn’t even occur to me to be concerned about how thick it was. The marshmallows were beautiful. I took a bite, well I tried. I’ve never bitten a rock but I imagine it must be like my marshmallow. Lesson learned.
Okay let me quit rambling and get down to THE  MARSHMALLOW OF DELICIOUS DEATH! Melt your caramel. On wax paper have the marshmallows sitting there, just hanging out waiting on their shower of caramel. Once the caramel is melted spoon it over the marshmallows. Let the caramel set.

Then melt your chocolate. I use a 3:1 ratio of chocolate candy coat to semi-sweet chocolate chips. If mixture is too thick just thin it out with a tad of coconut oil. Spoon chocolate over the marshmallows. Let set a few moments then sprinkle on the pecan pieces.

Now impatiently wait for the whole thing to set up. Take photos and send to the people on your naughty list so they can see what they will be missing out on. Or skip the photos and just throw down on THE MARSHMALLOWS OF DELICIOUS DEATH!

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Oven Roasted Candied Nuts

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​Candied Peanuts 
Want to be a rockstar to your family and friends this Christmas? Give the gift of candied peanuts. This recipe can

Also 

be used on Pecans and Almonds.

Ingredients:
Two 16 oz jars of peanuts. Salted or unsalted.
1 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp salt
2 egg whites

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line a cookie sheet. Make sure it’s got raised edges. If you use the flat sheets with no edges you will have regrets. So many regrets…
Line the pan with parchment paper.
In a bowl mix sugar, salt and cinnamon. In a large bowl whisk together egg whites and vanilla extract. Pour in sugar mixture. Stir.
Add one jar of peanuts, mix until they are well coated. Add second jar, stir till coated.
Pour out onto parchment paper. Spread out nuts.

Bake for 1 hour. Stirring every 15 minutes.  This ensures candied mixture cooks completely.

Once cool. Store your nuts in an airtight container. I line gift tins with wax paper and fill them with the peanuts. Stick on a gift tag. Give as gifts. BAM! Rockstar!

Dolls Gone Wild

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lead

Drunk Cake for 21st Birthday

My demon child turned 21 recently. Being the awesome mom I am I decided to make her a drunk Barbie cake. If you look these up on Pinterest you see Barbie is usually bent over a toilet vomiting sprinkles. Cute, but I wanted to do more of a Barbie Gone Wild theme.

Normally I would bake the cake myself but this time I cheated and bought a small cake from our local grocery store.

I bought a swimsuit Barbie doll, the swimsuit would be her underwear. She had to have dark hair to match my daughters.

I hit up the ABC store to grab a few shot bottles. Once home I emptied a few of them. I will let you speculate on how.

I tried to gently sit the doll upon the cake, she kept wanting to fall off the cake. She’s such a drunk! I ended up just pushing her rump down into the cake. I placed the liquor bottles on the cake and the 21 candle.

Bam! Done!

My daughter LOVED it! She had a great birthday and Barbie had a really really good time.

 

Before the booze got to her

Before the booze got to her

the cakego home barbie you're drunk

We did not let her drive her dream car home.

We did not let her drive the dream car home.

You Gotha Try This Banana Pudding, Pt. 3 of a Family Food Saga

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banana pudding 4

Banana Pudding. There’s a hundred recipes out there, each one claiming to be the best. How do you determine which is the best? Easy, it’s the one you grew up on. See, it is not about the taste when it comes to banana pudding (unless you find yourself face to face with a bowl made by someone who doesn’t know what the hell they’re doing), banana pudding is about memories.

I come from a big family. BIG. Not only do we breed like bunnies but once you become friends with someone in the family, you become family. There’s no getting out either. Kind of like the mafia but with less violence.

With a big family and the merging with other families comes many variations of banana pudding. To me each one is good. One does stand out above the rest but for the sake of family peace I will not name names. Over the years I have learned these recipes and have combined the best of each one to make…‘You Gotha Taste This Banana Pudding’. I’m sure the name won’t catch on but I think once you try this banana pudding recipe you just might be hooked.

You Gotha Taste this Banana Pudding

Ingredients:

Bananas

Vanilla Wafers

Vanilla instant pudding, 2 small boxes

2 ½ cups milk

1 small tub of cool whip, thawed

½ small can of condensed milk about 7 ounces.

2 tsp. vanilla extract

In a large bowl mix the 2 boxes of pudding with 2 ½ cups milk. I use a hand mixer. Once mixed add condensed milk (you can use the whole can but your banana pudding will be way to sweet) along with the vanilla extract. Beat until it has a smooth pudding consistency and has started to thicken up slightly. Gently fold on the cool whip. I put my pudding mixture in fridge until I’m ready to assemble.

Just the pudding and milk

Just the pudding and milk

With cool whip added

With cool whip added

While you’re pudding mixture is chilling out in the fridge, take a handful of vanilla wafers, place them into a Ziploc bag, and seal it.

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Find a weapon, I use a hammer with a dishrag or small hand towel laid over the bag (this prevents the hammer from tearing open the bag). Now beat the wafers. Beat them until they are vanilla crumbs. This will be the topping.

Beating the wafers. Ignore my chipped nail polish

Beat the wafers. Chipped nail polish is optional.

wafers to crumbs

wafers to crumbs

Slice your bananas. The amount depends pretty much on what you have on hand. I usually have a lot since my dad is always coming by with a bag of bananas he found on sale. I swear that man has not met a banana he didn’t like.

I just toss the banana slices into the cool whip bowl. No need to dirty extra dishes.

I just toss the banana slices into the cool whip bowl. No need to dirty extra dishes.

Once the bananas are sliced it’s time to get assembling. A pretty bowl or casserole dish is what you need.

Line the bottom of your bowl/dish with vanilla wafers. Spoon half of your pudding mixture over wafers. Add a layer of bananas. Repeat.

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Wafers, pudding mixture and banana.

Wafers, pudding mixture and banana.

Now the top is up to you. Some people line the top with whole wafers while others sprinkle the top with wafers crumbs. There are even those who lay down another layer of wafers, cover with a layer of just plain cool whip then sprinkle wafer crumbs. No wrong choice here. Cover with foil and allow to sit in the fridge a few hours.

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An important note: if you are making this dish for a get together you must make a small bowl of banana pudding and put in fridge. Why? Because if it’s like my family gatherings you’re not going to get any of it unless you do this.

Cover with foil and let chill in fridge for a few hours.

Bowl I made for myself as I was assembling the banana pudding

Bowl I made for myself as I was assembling the banana pudding

banana pudding 3

banana pudding 2

banana pudding 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

Super Bowl of Disaster

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In baking sometimes things can go wrong, sometimes they go Titanic. The ship is sinking with no hope for rescue. That happened today. One baking pin went wrong and one went Titanic.

Pin 1:
Baking pancake mix in muffin tins to create a pancake bowl. I ended up with pancake muffins. So I didn’t get my pancake bowl, no problem. I just cooked up some sausage patties and made pancake/sausage breakfast sandwiches. Pretty tasty.

Pin 2:
Turning your muffin pan upside down to make cookie bowls. Yeah…that one was a disaster. No survivors. I have burnt cookie pieces in my hair, a pan that almost did not come clean and a husband who is still laughing at me. I will laugh about this one day also. Just not today.

The pancake bowl. I followed the instructions so I don’t know what went wrong. I will check out more pancake bowls pins and see if I can do something different next time. When I finally get it right I will share the experience with you.

Tasty pancake sausage biscuit

Tasty pancake sausage biscuit

The cookie bowl. It was a last minute thing, I was baking cookies for tomorrows family dinner. I was down to the last bit of dough when I spotted my muffin pan sitting innocently in the dish rack drying. I got an idea (obliviously this was my first mistake). I remembered a pin, if was just a photo with no instructions, but it looked easy enough.
So I flipped the pan over, gave it a nice coat of cooking spray, slapped on the cookie dough and popped it into the oven. The pin showed the cookie down covering each muffin tin completely. I worried I didn’t use enough cookie dough, I didn‘t have much dough left. Apparently it does not take much cookie dough to make a bowl. I used too much and ended up with a darn big mess.

Prelude to the horror

Prelude to the horror


Cookie was baked/burnt onto the pan. I had to get a butter knife to fight and scrape the cookie mess off the pan. Burnt cookie was going everywhere. EVERYWHERE. All over my nice clean counter, the floor, my hair, I even had some crumbs get into my eye. I did learn that saying curse words at burnt cookie stuck to a pan does not do a thing to help get it off the pan. I did go seek out other pins. Next time I will mold aluminum foil to the muffin tin. I will also use less cookie dough per bowl. Hopefully I will have success next time.
Shameful

Shameful


Oh the horror!

Oh the horror!

Yummy Indoor S’mores

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The universe talks to us all. We just have to learn to listen. For example I had bought some of the new Hershey chocolate spread to try out. It was Wednesday. Thursday I come home from work to find a surprise left for me on my kitchen counter, marshmallow Peeps. My dad had got them for me after Easter and just decided that Thursday afternoon it was time to give them to me. So almost an hour later that same day I open up the sales paper from our local grocery store. Graham crackers were buy one get one free. Yes universe I hear you loud and clear…you want me to have smores.
Can’t fight fate people.
So later that evening I was enjoying a couple of indoor S’mores. To top it off I was enjoying my snack while wearing my ‘Chillin with my Peeps’ t-shirt.
Happy, I was so very happy. It seems toasting little yellow marshmallow bunnies puts a little lightness in my dark soul.

Indoor S’mores

You need:
Hershey chocolate spread
Marshmallow (peeps or the regular)
Graham crackers

The Gang

The Gang

Turn oven on to the broil setting. Take one of your graham crackers spread on the Hershey’s heavenly spread. Set aside. Put marshmallow on other graham cracker, place on cookie sheet.

The sacrifice

Pop that marshmallow in the oven. Watch closely. When the marshmallow is brown to your preference remove from oven.

Toasty Bunny

Toasty Bunny

Now marry the toasted bunny up to the chocolate covered graham cracker. Now you have a sandwich of gooey marshmallow chocolate happiness. Also known as S’mores.

After doing all that there are two things left to do: sit back and enjoy.

Yummy Indoor S'mores

Yummy Indoor S’mores

Loaded Blueberry Chia Muffins

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muffin

I have several boxes of blueberry muffin mix. It was on sale the other week along with chocolate chip cookie mix. It was a GOOD sale, too good to pass up. So I got two boxes of each. The next day here comes my dad with three boxes of each. He said it was a great deal and plus he thought it would be nice for his daughter to bake him some blueberry bread. The story doesn’t end there. Later that day as my husband comes home from work he announces, “hey look what was on sale”. Yes he got two boxes of blueberry muffin mix. I open the pantry door and reply to him, “yes I know it was on sale.” He sees all the boxes, laughs and replies, “Well at least we’ll have muffins during an apocalypse.”

So three boxes of muffins later I really wanted to change them up some. I decided to bake some to freeze them for workday breakfasts. Now if I’m going to have a muffin for breakfast I want it to fill me up. I opened my cabinets to see what I could throw in with the mix. There was my new Chia seeds. I can replace the eggs with that. I spotted some walnuts, some sunflower seeds, a packet of granola and some toasted coconut. I thought to myself, ‘what the hell throw it all in.”

And I did. The result: a muffin that filled me up and tasted pretty good. I did go overboard with the sunflower seeds, the taste almost overpowered everything else. So I will cut the amount in half next time. They are small muffins, at first I thought I would need two to fill me up. No. One was plenty. Is this a muffin your kids will like? Doubt it. Is this a muffin you will like? I hope you give it a go to find out.

A little something I want to share: I think the muffins would have risen more if I had used eggs instead of Chia seeds. I did bake a loaf of blueberry bread later that week, the only thing I changed in the recipe was using Chia seeds in place of eggs. I ended up with a tasty but a much smaller loaf than usual. Something I need to investigate further.
Do you replace your eggs with Chia seeds? If so, how does it work for you?

Gotha’s Loaded Blueberry Chia Muffins

1 blueberry muffin mix (or your favorite blueberry muffin)
Chia seeds to replace 3 eggs (3 tbsp chia + 9 tbsp water, sit to side for 15 mins)
½ c. water
1/3 c. oil (I used coconut)
½ c. walnuts
1 ½ tbsp. sunflower seeds
¼ c. granola
3 tbsp. coconut flakes
Blueberries (can that came with mix)

After your chia seeds have absorbed all the water and is gel like, add the seeds, mix, water and oil to a large bowl. Mix by hand.
Add walnuts, granola, sunflower seeds and coconut flakes. Mix.
Last add your blueberries. Fold them in gently.
Fill muffin tins.
Bake 20 minutes at 400 degrees.
This made a dozen.

Don’t judge a muffin by its picture. These aren’t picture perfect muffins but they are tasty.

Add 9 tbsp. of water to 3 tbsp. of seed. Let sit for 15 minutes. Replaces 3 eggs.

Add 9 tbsp. of water to 3 tbsp. of seed. Let sit for 15 minutes. Replaces 3 eggs.

Those nutty nuts

Those nutty nuts

The muffins aren't going to rise much at all.

The muffins aren’t going to rise much at all.

The small but filling Loaded Blueberry Chia Muffin

The small but filling Loaded Blueberry Chia Muffin