Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Reese Stuffed Giant Cookies

This is the first thing I have baked in the new house and let me tell you house nice it is to have a full kitchen and real oven! The basic recipe for the dough I got from the Fabulous Picky-Palate, except I didn't use M&M's and I stuffed my cookies!

Here's what you need: (I got so excited to be baking I forgot a line-up photo)
  • 2 sticks softened butter
  • 3/4 Cup sugar
  • 1 Cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 extra large eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons pure vanilla
  • 3 3/4 Cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 12 oz bag chocolate chips
  • Regular size Reese Cups

I started out by melting the butter (makes chewy softer cookies). We don't have a microwave yet, so I melted it on the stove. if you are patient enough to brown the butter, it makes much better cookies! 

Add the butter to the sugars. Add the eggs and vanilla. Mix well.

Combine your dry ingredients and add to the wet.

Add a bag of chocolate chunks and mix well. Chill the dough either for a short time in the freezer or a longer time in the fridge.

I also chilled the unwrapped reeses cups for a few minutes. 

Take a scoop of dough and flatten it out with a slight 'bowl' in the center. Add the PB cup and a little more dough on top. Form a ball of dough around the Pb cup.

Before and after shots. They turned out so much better than I hoped!
(By the way, I also stuffed a couple with GS Tag-Alongs. Have yet to eat one of those yet)

Mmm! So delicious!

Lilly was in the kitchen watching the whole time I was baking. I got behind the camera too. Those were cookies on my muffin top pan. Equally as amazing!


Stuffed Jalepeno Stuffed Burgers

Okay, if you are reading the title of this post you are probably thinking I am getting a little ambitious. The truth is, I didn't actually make the stuffed jalepenos just to stuff them into burgers. Leave the poppers to my friend, Victoria. They are pretty simple, but delicious. She cleans out the peppers and stuffs them with a cream cheese/sausage mixture and wraps them in bacon. OH YES!

Anyway, we had a get-together recently and she sent me home with a platter FULL of these poppers. What better to do then put them into a new recipe! My husband thinks I am silly, but I enjoy re-using stuff!

You will need:
  • Leftover Stuffed Jalepenos (or something similar)
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • seasonings
  • Cheese
Start with putting your hamburger into a bowl and adding the basic seasonings. I used creole seasoning, pepper, and garlic.

Now look at those delicious jalepenos! Dice them up into small pieces.

Add those pieces into the mixture. Combine well with your hands. If making ahead, keep this is in the fridge to get a nice flavor for a couple hours.

Now time to patty them up. I chopped up more stuffed jalepenos for this. Divide your meat into 4 or 5 equal amounts for 4-5 burgers. Form a patty shape and then make a 'bowl' in the middle for the filling and some cheese. I used white american sliced cheese. Then close it up as best you can around the filling.

Here they are stuffed and in the pan to cook!

If you sealed them well enough, the shouldn't ooze too much in the pan.

Oh my goodness! These were so juicy and delicious! It makes me consider stuffing a burger with a cream cheese mixture! Maybe a coming recipe?! =)
Hope you think these look yummy and I inspire you to use some leftovers to stuff your burgers.. maybe superbowl snacks?

Semi-Homemade Poptarts

So I was really bored before moving a couple weeks ago and decided to whip up some poptarts. I call them semi-homemade because I was a little on the lazy side and used store-bought pie crust dough. I want to try them again with a homemade recipe for pie crust.

But again, the way I made these was super simple, and you may even have the ingredients laying around your kitchen!

You will need:
  • Pie crust dough 
  • Sugar
  • Jelly or preserves
  • Cornstartch
  • Powdered Sugar
  • Splash of Milk
  • Sprinkles (if wanted)
Unroll (or roll out) your dough. I wanted the crust really thin and flaky, so I rolled this as thin as I could, while keeping its shape. Try to roll it our into a rectangular shape, so your poptarts are more uniform.

Next, squeeze about a cup of the jelly into a bowl. In another small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of water. Make a paste (this brought me back to the days of making goop) and add this to the jelly. Stir well. It just helps thicken it up a bit.

Spread some of the jelly onto the pieces of crust. Don't overdo it, if the jelly comes out the sides baking it is a mess!

*Important step* I learned the hard way, you have to seal these well. I suggest getting a small cup of water, and dipping our finger in the water, rub it around all the seams of the dough. Then fold it over and press firmly to seal.  (Optional: Brush the tops with water (or egg whites) and sprinkle with white sugar.)

Be sure to let them cool before breaking into them, otherwise it will be an oozing mess of jelly. Otherwise they are pretty tasty. I was very pleased that the center of it actually looks like a poptart!

And finally, to get the full effect, mix some powdered sugar and a little milk together to make an icing and top with sprinkles! This one is too cute!

I am waiting on the husband to get home so we can have dinner, and I am literally drooling at this post as my stomach rumbles away! =) 

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Blueberry Lemonade Slush

Yes, I am aware it is winter and currently pretty cold here in KS, but I was going through photos and found these... I made these so often this summer! Not only are they easy and refreshing, they also have fruit in them!

You will need:
  • Frozen Lemonade Concentrate (or other juice flavor)
  • Blueberries
  • Ice Cubes
  • Other fresh/frozen fruit if wanted
Used a Magic Bullet for a single batch, but also made larger batches in a regular blender. 

I am sure the lemonade concentrate is full of sugar and other crap, but the blueberries make me feel better about eating/drinking these!

If using a blender, use the whole lemonade carton, otherwise you can spoon out and taste as you go for a single serving.

Love this before mixing and after! So pretty! Anyways, pulse/blend until ice is crushed. Add more ice/blueberries for the right taste an consistency.

These are delicious! I have also had strawberry/blueberry lemonades and they were equally as good! Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Peanut Butter Custard Pie

I had been craving this pie for awhile, it is a similar recipe to what my mom makes. I couldn't get a hold of the family recipe, so I googled and found this similar one!  It is pretty basic, over the crust you crumble a peanut butter/powdered sugar mixture, pour in the cooked custard and top with some more of the crumbles! A meringue on top is an option too.

You will need:
  • 1 (9 inch) pie shell, baked (I USED AN OREO CRUST!)
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch
Meringue (Optional):
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 6 tablespoons white sugar

This crust was great with the pie! I baked it according to the package details before I added the custard for a little crispier crust.

For the PB crumble you will mix 1 part peanut butter to 2 parts powdered sugar, (1/2 cup and 1 cup). Combine these together until they form a crumbly texture.

You will need to separate 2 eggs. If you are making a meringue on top, save the whites for this.

In a double boiler, add the milk and white sugar. Stir these together.

Then you will add the salt vanilla and con starch.  Stir this oven medium heat until it thickens. (Mine was taking a lonnnng time, so I moved it to the microwave and heated it there, stirring in intervals.)

When it is done, it should be a thick custard. Be sure to stir well to get rid of lumps. The recipe doesn't call for this, but I added a heaping tablespoon of PB to the custard, it tasted better with this.

Place 3/4 of the PB crumbles in the bottom of the pie crust. It will look like more than you need, but trust me! Pour the hot custard over the top and then sprinkle the remaining crumbles on top. Keep Chilled!
This dessert is best if made the night it is to be eaten or the following day. After a day or two in the fridge it does start to separate and look 'watery' but it still tastes good, just not as great looking! ENJOY!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Perfectly Baked Cookies

I have found out over the past few years, a lot of people I know (Mom *Cough*) have trouble getting cookies to turn out fluffy, thick and delicious. Now the cookies usually all taste good, but let's face the fact, a fluffy cookie is better than a see-through one!  So I compiled a couple of tips I always use when making cookies!

There are 4 basic things I always try to do:

 Melt the butter!

 Use more brown sugar than white. For example, the normal recipe calls for 3/4 cup white sugar and 3/4 brown sugar...Alter this and use 1 cup b. sugar and 1/2 cup w. sugar!
Whip the egg(s) before adding to the ingredients.
 This is probably the most important, CHILL YOUR DOUGH! If you are impatient like me, use the freezer before the first batch. But freezing the dough keeps it together  and it is less likely to melt all over the pan, especially a hot-from-the-oven pan. 

I never have issues with my cookies coming on paper thin anymore! They are much more appealing, and with the alteration of more Brown sugar, I think they taste better too! I hope these tricks work for you, leave me a comment and let me know! 

*Oh on a funny note, I stored some of these cookies with some of the whoopie cakes, and the cookies were SO soft, because the cakes were super soft. I guess this compares to storing your cookies with a slice of bread. It totally worked*