I got a big ol’ bag of Hershey’s Kisses in my most recent Influenster vox box (among other awesome goodies) and I knew I had to make cookies. The bag even agreed with me, because what did I find on the back?
It was a message from above. Or from Hershey’s…
I only made one substitution. My mom and dad were planning to stop by and I wanted them to be able to eat a cookie or two, so I used Country Crock instead of the shortening (which is full of trans-fat).
I know that picture is probably hard to read, so here’s the recipe:
48 Hershey’s Kisses
1/2 cup shortening OR margerine
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Extra granulated sugar for dipping
Preheat oven to 375°. Mix shortening and peanut butter together until smooth, then add sugar and brown sugar and beat until fluffy. Add the egg, milk, and vanilla and stir.
Mix flour, salt, and baking soda together, then add to the peanut butter mixture a little at a time until a soft dough forms. Roll dough into 1 inch balls and then dip into the extra sugar. Place dough balls on an ungreased cookie sheet, about an inch apart. Bake 8-10 minutes.
While the cookies are baking, unwrap the kisses and try not to eat them all. As soon as the cookies come out of the oven, press a kiss into the center of each one. Place finished cookies on a rack to cool.
I actually had one of these cookies with my coffee this morning and I think it was a perfect breakfast.
Oh, who am I kidding? I had three. And a half.
I have this friend… She’s actually the mother of one of my oldest and dearest friends, so I’ve known her for practically my whole life. Anyway, this woman really knows her way around the kitchen and I’ve been lucky enough to lend her a hand occasionally. It was on one such morning that I was at her house, helping her put together a delicious meatloaf dinner, when she realized she had made an approximate ton of macaroni and cheese. Not wanting any of it to go to waste, she asked if I wanted to take some home.
Well who am I to say no to macaroni and cheese?
O had macaroni and cheese with his dinner that night, then mixed with peas, carrots, and diced chicken for lunch the next day. He was in heaven, but I knew if he ate too much more of the mac and cheese he wouldn’t poop for a week. I needed a way to use it up.
“Why not roll it in balls, coat it in breadcrumbs and more cheese, and then fry it up?”, said my internal health nut.
That’s exactly what I did. I served them with Sriracha mayo (just for the grownups) to be even more healthy.**
Sometimes you just have to throw caution to the wind.
Fried mac and cheese bites:
Cold leftover mac and cheese (I had about 2 cups)
1 cup Bisquick (or flour)
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups Italian breadcrumbs
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
Oil for frying (I used Canola)
Start by setting out three shallow dishes (pie pans work really well). Bisquick goes in the first dish, then beaten eggs, and last will be breadcrumbs and parm mixed together.
Pour about 1/2 inch of oil into a fry pan and turn the heat to medium. I test the oil by flicking a teeny amount of water at the pan. If it pops and crackles, it’s ready!***
I made each bite about the size of a Girl Scout cookie. Scoop some of the cold mac and chees, shape it into a flat round, then start dipping in the order above. Bisquick, egg, breadcrumbs. Make sure to shake the excess off after each dip, then set them in a single layer on a paper plate.
When the oil is hot enough, begin frying the bites four or five at a time. It will only take about 30 seconds to a minute on each side, so watch them carefully. Once they are golden brown on both sides, quickly remove them to a paper towel lined plate.
Feel free to give them a little dusting of salt if you like. For the Sriracha mayo, just mix mayonnaise with as much Sriracha as you can handle. It’s the best thing to dip French fries in, too!
We gobbled these up in record time, and O was asking for “Mo? Mo?” I’d say they went over well.
**This is sarcasm. I don’t think one single element of these mac and cheese bites would be considered healthy.
***It occurred to me that this is probably not the safest way to see if oil is hot enough for frying. You might want to get out your thermometer. Look for a temperature between 325° and 375°.
If you follow me on Instagram you probably saw my picture of the mini apple pies I made to celebrate national pie day:
Well, since I’ve been rather lazy in the kitchen lately (that pork loin was really the gift that kept on giving), and since I got a request for it… I thought I’d share the recipe. I’m a giver.
These little pies are super tasty and ridiculously easy…perfect for when you need to use up a few apples or when you want a sweet treat without much fuss.
For twelve mini pies, you’ll need:
One recipe heart – healthy pie crust (or your favorite store – bought crust for even less fuss)
3 medium/largeish-5 small apples (whatever variety you love), cored, peeled, and diced
Butter (about a teaspoon per mini pie)*
Caramel sauce (optional)
Preheat your oven to 425°. Spray a muffin tin with a little Pam.
Use a cookie cutter to cut circles out of your rolled out crust. You could also just tear off a chunk and press it into your muffin tin like I did. Either way, get a bottom crust into each hole of the muffin tin. Make sure a little crust hangs over the edge so you can seal the pies easily.
In each crust, add diced apples to the top of the tin. Sprinkle brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg over the apples (I didn’t measure, but maybe 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons of each?), then either pour about a tablespoon of caramel sauce over everything, or add a dab of butter to the top. *I don’t recommend using both because the filling might get soupy.
Use whatever method you like to form top crusts, then place them over the pies and seal ’em up. Vent each pie by cutting a slit into the top crust. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until the top crust is golden brown.
Serve warm with more caramel sauce and vanilla ice cream. Prepare to be adored.
Yep, same picture. I just thought you might like to see them again. Now go bake!
I saw this recipe while scrolling through Pinterest one day and I knew I had to try it. One pork product wrapped in more pork? What could be bad about that?
The correct answer is nothing. Except that maybe I didn’t make enough.
The BF loved it so much that he pretty much ate the entire three pound pork loin himself by sneaking pieces from the fridge.
I served it with oven roasted potatoes and mac and cheese the first night. On night two I shredded it into a skillet with a little water and some taco seasoning….I then spooned the meat into hard taco shells, topped them with a metric ton of cheese, then baked them at 400° for around ten minutes. Best tacos ever!
It also makes good sandwiches, according to The BF.
The recipe can be found here, and for once I wouldn’t change a thing.
For Valentine’s Day, I made a cookie cake (Recipe here) and it was also delicious.
It’s super delicious hot from the oven topped with Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla Ice cream.
Yes, I think Valentine’s Day is stupid and I don’t get what is so romantic about forced flowers…but I wanted a cookie cake. Plus, I feel like it’s my responsibility to make sure O sees that these silly holidays can be fun… That way, maybe he will be the kind of guy that gives thoughtful gifts on Hallmark days. You know, when he starts dating. At 25.
It’s been a few days! Did you guys miss me?
This weekend was The BF’s mom’s birthday. We spent Saturday having a lovely lunch with her, then taking the boy to get a hair cut. Wouldn’t you know it, the kid picked this time to make a fuss about it. To be fair, it was his nap time and he is still getting teeth. I think I’d be grumpy, too!
Sunday I made a cake for The BF’s mom. Let me tell you, the next time I decide to make someone a birthday cake I will pick a tried – and – true recipe. This cake gave me fits! She’s such a wonderful lady that it was well worth it…At least it tasted good!
Monday was O’s first dentist appointment. No cavities, and he did really well. I don’t think the little piranha even attempted to bite the dentist’s finger off! We celebrated by having lunch with my mom and The BF’s mom, then we headed to Kohl’s so I could exchange some slippers. I ended up getting a really good deal on some cute boots (Like, 89.99 marked down to 44.97. With my gift card and the cash I got back for the slippers, the boots were practically free!).
I’m sure by now you’re thinking, “Well that’s nice…but what about the spinach?”
Ok, ok…On to the spinach!
I don’t make this often because the BF’s not a huge fan. Last week I had a random craving for it, so I made barbecue pork cutlets, roasted broccoli and cauliflower, and creamed spinach. Delish!
To make it, you’ll need:
1 bag of pre washed spinach
About half of a smallish onion, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon margerine or butter
1-2 cups half and half
1/2 – 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper
1. Melt butter over medium heat in a skillet, then add onion and garlic. Let cook for a couple of minutes, then start adding your spinach, about 1/3 of the bag at a time.
2. Cover the pan each time you add spinach so it will wilt quickly.
3. Once all of your spinach has wilted, add a cup of half and half. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and let cook for about 5 minutes (or just until the half and half is hot). Add 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese and stir. If you need to adjust the consistency, add more half and half (to thin) or cheese (to thicken). Season with salt and pepper before serving.
4. Eat it up!
I had planned to use the leftovers for spaghetti squash florentine…but there weren’t any. For a guy that says he doesn’t like creamed spinach, the BF sure ate a lot of it! Not that I’m complaining…I love it when something I make for dinner disappears on the first night.
As I said yesterday, I had a lot of trouble getting excited about the Superbowl this year. I still planned to watch the game, though, because I knew I’d be mad if I missed an awesome display of football. After all, isn’t that what the Superbowl is all about? The two best teams in the league getting together to really battle it out for the title of World Champions? Theoretically, you should be able to count on a damn good game whether you like the teams that are playing or not.
I guess someone forgot to tell the Broncos because WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED?!
There has to be a good reason for the abysmal performance by the Broncos last night. Here are the top five possibilities, thought up by yours truly:
5. There was a freak snow storm in Denver and the team was actually unable to get to the game. A local high school team was subbed in.
4. Body snatchers.
3. GHB in the Gatorade.
2. Oprah offered each player a billion dollars and a jet ski to throw the game. Who says no to a jet ski?
Photo courtesy of Peyton Manning’s Wikipedia page, which (as of right now) doesn’t say anything about him being too stoned to win a Superbowl.
Pinterest is dangerous.
Last night I was scrolling through the Food and Drink section when I saw a pin for soft pretzel bites. I don’t know if you’ve noticed yet, but I have quite a bread addiction going on here. When I saw the recipe, I pinned it…then I pinned a couple more… then I went to sleep and had dreams about soft pretzels.
Well ok, I actually had a dream that someone dyed my hair blue and said I looked like Katy Perry and I was quite distraught because I really can’t stand her…But you probably didn’t want to know that.
So I woke up this morning and rejoiced that Superbowl day had dawned and that meant SNACKS. And chili cheese dogs for dinner.
Chili cheese dogs…on soft pretzel buns.
While the boy ate lunch, I made the cheeseball and got the buns started. By the time I had covered the dough to rise, it was nap time for O (who is in the middle of getting FIVE teeth right now, NBD). I was able to get him down and finish the dishes before the dough was ready, and I managed to get them in the oven before he woke up.
The recipe I used can be found at BiteMeMore.com and I followed it exactly. For once.
Hint: you could probably get away with less than sixteen cups of water, just make sure to adjust the baking soda to water ratio accordinly.
I’m very happy with how these turned out. I ended up with eight buns, but The BF wandered through the kitchen and stole one. He must approve, because after he finished his stolen bun he went back to touch the rest of them. “You don’t know where my hands have been…”, he said.
I don’t think he realizes…I don’t care. I’m still going to eat my chili cheese dog on a delicious pretzel bun.
I just realized that the Super Bowl is tomorrow.
I know, I can’t believe it either.
I just can’t really get excited about it this year since I’m just, eh about both teams. I guess I want the Broncos to win after that ridiculous display put on by Sherman after the Seahawks win…but I don’t like hopping on the Broncos bandwagon just because a certain ex-Colt happens to be their QB.
Of course, I’m still gonna watch because it’s football and we’re looking at a very long stretch of no football after this is over. Remember, two seasons: football and boring. Plus, Super Bowl watching requires one thing I tend to be very good at (besides yelling at the tv): snacking. I’m definitely going to make the Holy Grail cheeseball, and I might even pop some popcorn and toast up some Cheerios. We don’t need a ton of food since it’ll just be the three of us.
I majorly slacked on giving you guys some awesome Super Bowl party snack ideas. I had planned to have a big list of ideas for you, and I actually meant to get it posted about a week ago. Funny how that whole ‘preparedness’ thing just never happens for me…At any rate, here’s a last minute list of snacky foods that I think would be awesome for your Super Bowl gathering:
4.Sweet and spicy meatballs (try subbing ground pork)
6. Toasted Cheerios (not pictured): Melt a couple of tablespoons of butter in a pan over medium heat, then add Cheerios (try to keep them in a single layer, so the amount would depend on the size of your pan). Fry until they are golden brown, then add salt and any other seasonings you like.
Toasted Cheerios are seriously addicting so make sure to make more than you think you’ll need.
You could also order a pizza or some wings… A mighty tempting idea for this hot wing (boneless, duh) loving girl right here.
So what do you have planned for the Super Bowl?
Who are you rooting for?