We had a bake sale at work and I wanted to contribute something that wasn't overly sugary but was still full of great flavour. I found this recipe while I was on Pinterest and they turned out great. What is awesome about these No Bake Energy Balls is that they are so versitile that you can add or omit different ingredients depending on your preference. For my version that I made, I omitted the coconut and added more oatmeal instead and they still turned out great. Enjoy!
Who doesn't love Rum Balls during the holidays? The best thing about Rum Balls is the longer they sit for, the boozier they get (if you can make them last that long). This recipe is from my 'Joy of Cooking - All About Cookies' cookbook, the original recipe calls for bourbon but I used a spiced rum instead and they tunred out just great! Happy Holiday's!
1 Cup powdered sugar
2 Tbsp cocoa powder
1/4 - 1/3 Cup of rum (or bourbon)
2 Tbsp light corn syrup
2 1/2 Cups chocolate wafers (or vanilla), crushed finely in a food processor
1 Cup coarsley chopped pecans
1) Sift together powdered sugar and cocoa powder and set a side
2) In a seperate bowl, mix together rum and corn syrup
3) Mix together cocoa mixture and rum mixture until combined
4) Stir in crushed wafers and nuts into cocoa rum mixture until well combined (if mixture is too dry, add more corn syrup and if mixture is too wet, add more powdered sugar a little bit at a time. This mixture should stick together well and keep their shape)
5) Roll mixture into balls and coat with powdered sugar
6) Ball can be kept at room temperature for 3 weeks or can be stored in the fridge or freezer for later use (the longer they sit, they stronger they taste!), enjoy!
I recieved mixed reviews about these treats from my friends. Some said that they loved the combination of the vanilla and cranberry flavors but some said that they would have been better if I took the cranberries out. I decided to use vanilla flavored Rice Krispies and added extra vanilla extract into the marshmallow mixture. Overall, the vanilla flavor of the rice krispie squares were great but I may leave out the cranberries next time as they weren't everyones favorite.
It has been a busy, fun, crazy summer and to top it all off I got to attend a fabulous wedding at the beginning of September. My good friends Matt and Laura Greenwood got married on September 17, 2011 but the fun didn't start there. There was many bridal showers, wedding parties and an awesome bachlorette party. I had so much fun attending all of these events that I wanted to share all of the treats that I got to eat along the way.
I made these chocolate covered strawberries for Laura's fisrt birdal shower. They are very easy to make and you can find the recipe on my website here. As mentioned before, these treats are best eaten the day they are made.
This was Laura's bridal shower ice cream cake. We all enjoyed this Dairy Queen ice cream cake, especially because it looks a lot like the couple.
Unfortunately, we did not get to taste this wedding cake because it was a 'fake' cake. I had never heard of them before but they call them 'fake' cakes because there is only one piece of real cake at the back so that you can cut into it and enjoy but the rest of the cake is unedible.
All in all, it was a great summer full of wonderful treats that I wanted to share with you. Thanks again to Matt and Laura for such an amazing wedding; I am so greatful to have been a part of everyone moment!
Tips for Chocolate Covered Strawberries
- Always wash and dry the strawberries before using them
- I find its best if you make the chocolate covered berries the day of eating
- I like to use semiweet chocolate (I find that milk chocolate is too soft and dark chocolate is too hard when they dry)
- I like to use white candy coating rather than white chocolate (it melts better and is easier to use)
- I find that it is better to dip the strawberries when they are at room temperature rather than cold because the combination of the hot chocolate and the cold strawberry can cause the berry to 'sweat'
- I like to flash freeze the berries for 1min after I dip them - Once I've dipped about 10 berries I put them in the freezer for 1min or less so the hot chocolate doesn't 'cook' the berry too much
- After some testing I've found that the chocolate covered berries can last overnight at room temperature and still be fine (I stored them in a box but still allowed some air to breathe)
- If you need to keep them longer than overnight I would recommend you keep them in the fridge or else the berries might go bad (the only down side to this is that when you remove them from the fridge the berries form beads of condinsation - this is from the berries trying to breathe through the chocolate - they will still taste good but the apperance isn't the same as the first day you made them)
- All in all making chocolate covered strawberries can be fun but can also be frustrating and involves a lot of trial and error - to be safe buy and make your strawberries the day of eating them and enjoy!
Here is a quick summer treat to try if you craving that sweet tooth in the heat.
Note: I found with this recipe you need to drink it ASAP because 1) it is very good and 2) the crushed cookies in it seem to get a bit soggy after time and then the texture isn't as good as before
Iced Lemonade Milkshake
10 Crushed cookies (I used Iced lemonade cookies)
1 Cup vanilla ice cream
1/2 Cups ice
1/2 Cup milk
1) Put all ingredients into a blender and blend until the mixture is thick and frothy. You may have to alternate blending a stirring until the mixture becomes nice and smooth
2) Pour it into a glass and enjoy!
A good family friend of mine asked me to bake for her son's engagement party that she was hosting at her house. Since it was the beginning of summer she thought it would be a great idea to take advantage of the local strawberries and asked me to bake her chocolate covered strawberries, strawberry tarts, strawberry shortcakes and strawberry shortbread cookies.
For the chocolate covered strawberries, I thought it would be a cute idea to decorate the strawberries in outfits of chocolate covered wedding dresses and tuxedos. I used semisweet chocolate for the tuxedo jackets and white candy coating for the wedding dresses.
For the shortbread cookies, I got the idea from the Pioneer Woman for this recipe. I thought the combination of shortbread, creamcheese, and strawberries was perfect for a light and sweet simple dessert. I decided to use a flower shaped cookie cutter and sprinkled the dessert with raw sugar to make it look more prettier.
The tarts were very fun to make and I used this vanilla pudding recipe that turned out really well. I didn't have any vanilla beans so I added an extra 1 1/2 tsp of vanilla to the recipe and used 2% milk. I made the pudding the day before assembling and let it sit in the fridge overnight so it was extra vanilla tasting. Hope you enjoyed all the strawberry treats, happy baking!
I love love love ice cream! But... I'm lactose intolerate and I am yet to find a good soy ice cream out there that I enjoy. Looking at the Pioneer Woman's website, like I always do, I was drooling over her 'I Scream' post all about ice cream. Then I discovered that she had a whole section of non-dairy ice cream recipes that were posted on the Tasty Kitchen website. I don't have an ice cream maker (yet!) but I found this recipe for Healthy, Impossibly Easy Banana Ice Cream that doesn't use an ice cream maker, doesn't have dairy, and is healthy! I was so excited that I went out the next day to the store and bought so many bananas. I followed the recipe posted on Tasty Kitchen and added 4 Tbsp cocoa powder, 1/4 Cup almond milk, and 1 Tbsp vanilla to the 3 sliced frozen bananas. I don't have a very good blender but I just kept blending and stirring the mixture until it formed the texture I wanted. Then I sprinkled it with mini chocolate chips and enjoyed!
Side Note: I only ate half of the batch that I made and kept the other half covered in the freezer overnight. The next day I let it sit at room temperature for about 30min and then it was perfect texture to eat again!
A little while back, Archway Cookies sent me an e-mail asking if I wanted to participate in their summer baking contest and I immediately said yes! So last week they sent me a bunch of smaples to bake with for their contest. I've made a few recipes so far using their cookies and I thought I would share them with you one at a time. I started off simple with a classic ice cream sandwiche recipe. I found the classic oatmeal and the dutch cocoa from Archway to be the best to use for the sandwiches because they were perfectly round and very soft and chewy (which I prefer for a sandwich cookie). I used vanilla ice cream for both sandwiches and decorated them with mini chocolate chips and toffee bits to give them a little bit more yumminess. Feel free to use any of your favorite ice creams and decorate them with as much toppings as you like. Think of ice cream sandwiches as sundae's but in the palm of your hand!
Ice Cream Sandwiches
2 Large cookies (I like to use soft and chewy cookies)
Approx. 1/3 Cup ice cream, depending on the size of your cookies
1/4 Cup dessert toppings (ie. chocolate chips, sprinkles, toffee bits, or even blueberries etc.)
1) Lay each cookie face open and spoon ice cream onto one cookie evenly
2) Place other cookie on top of ice cream and lightly press down just until ice cream reaches the edges
3) Sprinkle toppings on ice cream, gently pressing down to keep them in place
4) Cover and store sandwiches in the freezer for 30min or until you want to eat them and enjoy!
Side Note: My boyfriend tried one of these sandwiches after it had been in the freezer for a few days and said it was even better then the day they were made. He said the cookies were softer from the moisture of the ice cream and the ice cream kept its shape better too.
Me, my boyfriend and his brother went up to the East coast of Canada, all the way to Newfoundland, this week to visit their Auntie Sue. Sue wasn't born in Newfoundland but she sure cooks and bakes like she does. We were spoiled rotten with great food all week that she cooked using local Newfoundland recipes. We ate everything from Moose Burgers to Cod Tounges to Partridgeberry Pie. I was too busy eating to capture everything on our adventures but I managed to take a few delicious pictures to share with you!
The first night there we had fresh halibut steaks but I was too hungry to get a picture of those but the second night we went out and got fresh lobsters. We bought both females and males and kept them in the fridge in a bag (with air holes of coarse) until it was dinner time. Once you have a big pot of boiling water going you put all the lobsters inside and cover. Once the water begins to boil again you cook them for 20min (Sue says that 20min is the perfect time for them to be ready) and they should be bright red. Then crack them open, dip them in melted herbed butter and enjoy!
For dessert that night we had partridgeberry pie! Sue makes her crust with lard which gives it a great flaky tenderness. Partridgeberries are small, red and quite tart. They work well in jams and pies. Sue also made a rhubarb pie from her garden but I ate that before I could take a picture because it was so good!
For appetizers one night we ate all these fresh mussels. Sue steamed them with onions, garlic and white wine just for a few minutes until the shells opened up. Then we devoured them within about 5min! :)
Another night we decided to buy some fresh snow crabs. We cooked them the same way we did the lobsters in a pot of boil water for about 20min until they turned bright red in color. They were so good and flakey and we dipped them in lots of butter as well!
Sue made yet another pie, this one was bakeapple pie but can they can also be called cloudberries. These berries look like small orange raspberries and have a very unique smell to them. They work well in jams and pies and have a texture like blackberries and raspberries, where you can taste the seeds when you eat them.
All in all it was a great trip and we definately filled our bellies full of delicous Newfoundland food. Sue gave us each a Newfoundland recipe cookbook so I will have to bake something from that soon to share with you!