Sunday, June 26, 2011

Oreo Bon-Bons

Oreo Bon-Bons

1 bag of Oreos
1 block of cream cheese (8 oz.)
1 lb. vanilla-flavored candy coating (see note)

Crush Oreos in a gallon-size Ziploc bag with a rolling pin (or in a bowl with a potato masher). Mix the crushed Oreos and cream cheese in a large bowl until very well blended. (This takes 5-6 minutes.) Cover the mixture and let sit in the refrigerator for one hour.

Roll into small ball shapes. (To aid in the dipping process, return rolled balls to refrigerator and let sit several minutes until firm. Remove half of the batch at a time when dipping.) Dip the balls into melted candy coating and set on wax paper to harden. This should be done fairly quickly to prevent candy coating from hardening before all rolled balls have been dipped. Keep in refrigerator until ready to serve.

Cook’s note: Vanilla-flavored candy coating, such as Candiquik, or Almond bark, is usually available in the same grocery aisle as the chocolate morsels. It is usually sold in 1-lb. packages. It is sometimes called white chocolate candy coating. Follow package directions to melt.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Homemade Twix Bars

It never crossed my mind to make my own candy bar. But I saw this recipe here, it looked delicious, and I had to try them. 

Homemade Twix Bars
1 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup butter
2 tbsp Corn Syrup
1/2 cup condensed milk 
1/2 cup brown sugar

1-1/2 cups Cadbury milk chocolate (I used Ghirardelli milk chocolate)

1. Mix the cookie ingredients until it is all combined and crumbly, do not over-mix. Pat down in a greased 9x9 glass pan. Bake for 325 degrees for 20 minutes. You don't want the cookie to be under-cooked, it's supposed to be a little crunchy. 

2. While the cooking is baking - combine the caramel ingredients in a saucepan, turn to medium-high heat, and constantly stir until it boils. Once the caramel comes to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and continue to constantly stir for 5 minutes.

3. Pour the caramel over the hot cookie. Place in the fridge and let it cool for at least an hour.

4. Melt the chocolate and pour over filling. Let it cool again for up to an hour before cutting. 

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Cinnamon Swirl Cake

I have my mother-in-law to thank for this wonderful recipe. I didn't change a thing to it. It is one of the best cakes a person could possibly make! So delicious.

Cinnamon Swirl Cake
1 package of yellow cake mix
3.5 oz. instant vanilla pudding mix
1/2 cup soft margarine
1 cup sour cream
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup brown sugar
1-1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1. Combine the cake mix, pudding mix, margarine, sour cream, eggs, and vanilla.
2. Beat for 10 minutes. This may seem like a long time, but it's necessary to get a nice fluffy cake.
3. Mix the brown sugar and cinnamon in a separate bowl.
4. Turn half of the batter in a greased bundt pan. Sprinkle 1/2 of the sugar mix on top of the batter. Add the remaining batter and top with the remaining sugar mix.
5. Swirl with a knife to create a swirl of the sugar and cinnamon into your cake.
6. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes. Allow the cake to completely cool before slicing and serving.

Waist Apron Tutorial

This is almost exactly like the apron here and there was a request for a quick tutorial, so here it is. There are a lot of similarities to this apron. So first off, grab your supplies:
 I then took a square piece of fabric, held it up to my waist and measured the width and length I wanted it - your dimensions might be different than mine :). But make sure to make it 3-4 inches longer than your desired length. Then I finished the edges of that entire piece.
 Next, make your yellow ruffle. Increase the length of your stitch on your machine to 4.5. Do not do a back stitch.
 Pull on the bottom thread and pull the fabric in the opposite direction. Watch your little ruffle come to life!
 Pin and sew the ruffle directly on the back.
 Next, cut some straps. sew with pretty sides together, creating a long tube. Turn inside out and iron flat. Sew next to your ruffle on the back of your apron.
 Fold the extra few inches of fabric down over the strap to reinforce it.
 I added a little pocket, I always have my phone on me, so this little guy does the trick perfectly!
 There you are! A quick little waist apron. Let me know if you need more details or have any questions!

Flower Onesie

Another little onesie. I did the same thing as the onesie I made here. I cut out all of the pieces, made sure they fit, then cut out a matching piece of bonding paper. Ironed on the pieces, and with this onesie I decided to make this one a little extra durable. It took a lot more time, but I think it's worth it. I just found a stitch on my sewing machine that goes in a UUUU shape. I went very slowly to make sure that I was carefully following the edges. Like I said, it took a little longer, but definitely worth it. 

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Chicken Parmigiana

Chicken Parmigiana
4 Chicken breasts
2 eggs
1/2 cup flour
1 cup of fresh bread crumbs
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cups tomato pasta sauce
4 slices of Mozzarella 
12 oz. of uncooked pasta

1. Pour the oil in a saute pan and turn to medium heat. While the oil is heating through prepare the chicken breasts. Also, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. 
2. Dip each chicken breast in the flour, pat off excess. Dip in the beaten eggs. Cover in fresh bread crumbs (take a slice of whole wheat bread and use a cheese grater to get your fresh crumbs). 
3. Softly lay the chicken breast in the hot oil. It shouldn't be hot enough to "spit" back at you. Let your bread crumbs brown and your chicken begin to cook. Turn after 3-4 minutes, and let the other side brown for another 3-4 minutes. Once your chicken has browned let it rest for a minute on a paper towel to soak up some of the oil. 
4. Pour the pasta sauce into a greased baking dish. Lay your browned breaded chicken breasts in your baking dish. 
5. Bake for 20-23  minutes. While the chicken is cooking, cook your pasta.
6. Pull out the dish and place a slice of Mozzarella on each piece of chicken. Place back in oven and let it cook for another 5-7 minutes. 
7. Serve your chicken on top of your pasta with any excess pasta sauce.

 It's a delicious meal, and one of my husbands favorite!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Monday, June 13, 2011

BBQ Chicken Pizza

BBQ Chicken Pizza
Pizza Dough
1 - 1 1/2 breasts of chicken
1 cup BBQ sauce
1/3 cup Mozzarella
1/3 cup Sharp Cheddar
3 or 4 strips of turkey bacon
1 Tbsp. of chopped fresh cilantro

1. Cook chicken. Bake in an oven at 350 for 25 minutes. Shred and combine with about 1/3 cup of BBQ sauce. Cover and store in your fridge until the rest of your pizza is prepared.
2. Cook the bacon, but not all the way. Chop and set aside.
3. Prepare the pizza dough. You can either do a refrigerated pizza dough, or you can use this recipe:
1 1/2 cups of warm water
1 Tbsp yeast
1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
3-4 1/2 cups of flour
Place the sugar, warm water and yeast in a mixing bowl. Let it rest for about 10 minutes until the yeast gets bubbly. Add the salt. Mix in 1 1/2 cups of flour. Once well combined mix in another 1 1/2 cups of flour. Add more flour until the dough comes away from the edges of your bowl (a little sticky, but not too sticky). Put the dough in a greased bowl and let it rise for 30-45 minutes. Roll out in a circle and place on your greased pan.
4. When putting the pizza dough on the pan, roll up the edges to create a crust. Spread out the BBQ sauce. Spread the chicken. Sprinkle the cheese and bacon.
5. Bake in a preheated oven set to 425 degrees. Bake for 12-14 minutes until the crust is golden brown. Sprinkle the chopped cilantro on the cooked pizza. And enjoy!!!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Mexican Chicken Corn Chowder

Mexican Chicken Corn Chowder
2 chicken breasts
1/2 cup diced onion
1 sweet red pepper
2 cloves or garlic
1 tsp. dried thyme
2 Tbsp. flour
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 can (12 oz.) 2% evaporated milk
1 can (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes
1 can (4.5 oz.) green chiles
1 can (14.75 oz.) cream-style corn
1 can (14.75 oz.) whole kernel corn
1 Tbsp. barbecue sauce
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. salt

Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Place in greased cooking dish. Cook 2 chicken breasts in the oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. The chicken should shred easily.

While chicken is cooking, prepare the rest of the soup. In a large pan saute the onion in a tablespoon of butter. After a few minutes add the red pepper and garlic. Once the onions, and peppers are tender, add the thyme and flour.

Stir in the chicken broth and evaporate milk. Keep on medium-high heat until it thickens. Add the tomatoes, chiles, cream-style corn, corn, barbecue sauce, salt and pepper. Add in the shredded chicken. Turn down the heat, and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Top it off with some crispy bacon and fresh cilantro. It's sweet and savory, one of my favorite dishes!

Side-note: This is "low-fat", because if you've ever made corn chowder, then you know that it usually has a whole bunch of butter, bacon grease, half-and-half, and anything else that is wanting to clog your arteries. So with the chicken stock base, and a bit of the low-fat evaporated milk, you'll be able to enjoy your soup without regret!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

DIY Ribbon Board

I have made several of these for other people, and I decided my own baby girl deserves one! So I took some coupons I had that were expiring, and I was able to buy all of my materials for under $10! (excluding the staple gun).
Lay your fabric face down. Place some quilt batting on top of that (the thickness is totally up to you). Then lay your cork board face down in the center of the fabric and batting. You want to make sure you have at least a 2 inch allowance on each of the four sides of the board.  
Start in the middle of any side and staple the material and batting to the back of the cork board. 
After completing one side, do the opposite side. Pull the fabric and batting slightly when stapling so that there is no slack in the fabric.

 Take the ribbon (you can do one kind of ribbon, but I used 5 different ribbons to add a little more character) and lay it down diagonally across your board with about a 2 inch allowance on each end. You can pin the ribbons in place, or you can set them aside, and staple each ribbon one at a time. Before I staple the ribbon I always hold it in place, look at the front to make sure it's straight and parallel to the other ribbons, then staple.
 Once you have completed all of the ribons facing one direction, to the others facing the opposite direction.
 This time, you will want to weave the new ribbons with the ribbons that have already been stapled onto the board. The ribbons that are weaved should stay in place while you flip over the board to staple - once again, I usually make sure it's exactly where I want it before I staple it.
 After stapling the fabric, batting, and ribbons, I like to trim all of the excess just to clean it up a bit. But it's the back, who cares what it looks like, no one will ever see it!
 And there you have it!! I don't think it took me more than 20 minutes! It's darling, and I love it. You can place pictures under the ribbons or reminder notes or whatever you please - I'll be using it for all of my baby girls little hair bows!