Friday, October 28, 2016

Edible Eyes

Halloween.  I think there are two types of people out there when it comes to Halloween:  those that love all things creepy and gross . . .and those that don't.  My hubby falls into the second category.  Me, more of the first (as long as it isn't too creepy or super scary).  And of course, what kid doesn't love Halloween?  Our teenager absolutely loves it - and for several years now, she has been making Halloween treats to hand out to all of her friends.  This year I helped her make candy eyeballs.  We'll just say the hubby wasn't so excited about them.  I brought a bowl of them to work and they were a huge hit.  And remember, take two . . .they usually come in pairs ;)

Edible Eyes
Makes Several

Candy Melts or White Chocolate

Special Tools:

Step 1:  In a microwave safe bowl, add some candy melts in the color of your choice and melt on low in the microwave for 30 seconds.  Then, stir well.  If they are not melted yet - go another 30 seconds.  After that, stir again.  Do not over cook - it will burn.  You just want them melted enough to be liquidy.  Optional:  after the candy is melted, place into a baggie or piping bag, close and snip the tip - this helps with the next step.

Step 2:  In the bottom of the round molds, place a candy eye.  Then, top with melted candy. Place the molds in the fridge or freezer for about 10-15 minutes - until the eyeballs are set.

Step 3:  Once the candy is hardened, remove from the molds.  They should pop right out by tipping them upside down and giving the cavity a tiny squeeze.  

Friday, October 21, 2016

Cookies ‘n Cream Cheesecake Mousse

This is pure decadence.  You will be tempted to eat the entire batch.  No doubt on that.  This mousse is made with cream cheese and Oreos and whipped topping and everything that makes life awesome!!!!  Okay, well . . .maybe not everything that makes life awesome.  Just almost everything.  Make this now.  Just do it.

This recipe is an original from here.  This lady is phenomenal.  She has one of my most favorite blogs.  

Cookies 'n Cream Cheesecake Mousse
Serves 6

1 - 8 Ounce Block Cream Cheese, softened
1/3 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Marshmallow Fluff
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
8 Ounces Frozen Whipped Topping, thawed
15 Oreo Cookies
Maraschino Cherries for Garnish

Step 1:  Take 6 Oreos and set them aside - they will be used for garnish.  With the remaining 9 Oreos, break them up into about four pieces each and set aside.  

In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine cream cheese and sugar.  Using an electric mixer, beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.

Step 2:  Add in the marshmallow fluff and vanilla extract and beat until well combined.

Step 3:  Add in the broken-up Oreos and mix until combined.  

Step 4:  Add in the whipped topping and beat until creamy and smooth.

Step 5:  Distribute the mousse between 6 dessert dishes.  Garnish with a whole Oreo and a maraschino cherry.  Serve immediately.

If you wish to make ahead, do not garnish until you serve it.  Cover the mousse tightly with plastic wrap and store in the fridge.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Parmesan and Chive Crusted Pork Chops

Here is a super simple recipe for pork chops.  In fact, it's so simple that I don't even measure out the ingredients!!  These always turn out delicious.

Parmesan and Chive Crusted Pork Chops
Serves:  4-6

4-6 Pork Chops (about 1.5 pounds)
Dijon Mustard
Parmesan Cheese

Step 1:  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Spray or grease a baking sheet.

Step 2:  Place pork chops on the baking sheet.  Top each pork chop with a little mustard and spread to cover the top of the chop.  Sprinkle about a tablespoon of Parmesan cheese on each chop.  Now, add about a tablespoon of chives to the top of each chop.

Step 3:  Place chops in the oven.  Bake for about 1/2 hour - until the chops are cooked through.  This may vary in time based on how thick your chops are.  Pork is done when it reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit for the internal temp.


Friday, October 7, 2016

Scalloped Potatoes

Every once in a while, I just crave a good, old-fashioned scalloped potato.  Not that kind that comes from a box.  And not the cheesy kind either.  Rather, the creamy kind . . .with chives and dill.  Although it may seem a bit daunting, it really isn't.  The hardest part is cutting the potatoes thinly - I use a mandolin for ease.  But, don't let this recipe scare you . . it is supper yummy and goes great with pork chops.

Scalloped Potatoes
Serves 4-6

2 Pounds Potatoes (standard Russett)
1/4 Cup Chives
8 Tablespoons of Butter (1 Stick)
1 Teaspoon Chopped Garlic
1/4 Cup Sour Cream
1/4 Cup Cream
1/2 Cup Milk 
Nature's Seasoning (or Salt and Pepper)

Step 1:  Preheat the oven to 375°F. Peel the potatoes and cut them into 1/4-inch thick slices.

Step 2:  In an oven-proof skillet, melt 4 tablespoons of the butter over low heat.  Add the garlic and stir to distribute.  

Step 3:  Remove from heat and now it's time to layer the potatoes etc.  Place a single layer of potato slices in the pan.  Season with Nature's Seasoning and sprinkle with dill.  Repeat with remaining potatoes until all the potatoes are in the pan.  

Step 4:  In a saucepan, add the remaining butter, sour cream and milk.  Heat and stir until combined and hot (do not boil).  Pour over the potatoes.  The liquid should almost come to the top of the potatoes.  If it does not, add a little extra milk to bring the liquid level up to the top of the potatoes (but do not cover them in milk).  

Step 5:  Return the skillet to the stove top and bring to a simmer.  Top with the chives.  

Step 6:  Place the pan in the oven and bake for about 45 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork.