Friday, July 29, 2011

Cinnabun Popcorn

I went to see a good friend awhile back and she gave me a bag of this delicious popcorn.  She probably thought I was a pig, because while visiting with her, I think I ate more than half of the bag she gave me.  I had to have the recipe.  It's a melt in your mouth kind of yumminess.  :o)  Does that make sense?!  It was awesome!  I made some just last week, and my family gobbled it up!

Cinnabun Popcorn
12 c. popped popcorn (1/2 c. kernels)
1 c. chopped pecans
1 c. brown sugar
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 c. karo syrup
1/2 c. butter
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp baking soda
4 oz almond bark

Preheat oven to 250 degrees.  Pop your popcorn and place it and your chopped pecans in a large bowl and set aside. 

In a 2 liter microwave safe bowl combine brown sugar, and cinnamon.  Mix it together.  Then add buter cut up into chunks and place on top of brown sugar mix, pour corn syrup over the top of everything.  Microwave on high for 30 seconds and then stir to combine.  Microwave again for 2 minutes.  Remove and stir and then microwave for 2 minutes more.  Remove from microwave and add in vanilla and baking soda.  Stir to combine.  The baking soda should make it foam. Pour caramel mix over popcorn and pecans and stir it good to coat everything.  Place in a foil lined cookie sheet.  And bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.

Remove from oven and spread the popcorn out onto a large piece of parchment paper.  Or if you don't have parchment wax paper or foil work just fine.

Melt almond bark according to package directions and drizzle it over the top of the popcorn.  Let it cool until bark has hardened.  Break into chunks and try to keep yourself from eating the entire batch yourself.


Our little family is off on vacation today.  I can't wait to get away from my cave for a day or two.  And when I come back next week it will be August!  Can you believe it?  It's almost fair time and school time.  YAY!  :o)  Yes, i'm one of those moms that can't wait for the school year to start.  Anyhoo...see you for Menu Monday and hopefully Monica will be back to blogging soon.  I sure miss her!!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Welcome our Guest Teauna from From Cupboard to Cupboard

Hi, Everyone!!!  We have another fun guest post for you today.  It's Teauna from From Cupboard to Cupboard!  She's a talented craftswoman and cook and also comes from the same little town as me and Moni.  I'm excited she accepted to come post over with us today.  Enjoy!  And don't forget to like us on facebook and follow our blog.  Once we get some more followers we are gonna have another fun giveaway!  YAY!  Have a great Wednesday!!

Hi! I am Teauna and I am a Cupcake-aholic.  You can find me over at From Cupboard to Cupboard... where I share my love for cooking! I love to cook, bake, decorate, blog about it... etc, etc, etc. 

When Erica and Monica invited me over to their Giant Blog of Cooking, Crafting, and other activities to share a recipe with you, I was pretty darn excited!  I grew up with these talented girls and I really enjoy catching up with them on their blog! Thanks girls, for the invite! Muah!;)

I really wanted to cook you up something special!  I went thru cookbooks, blogs, my brain, and nothing seemed quite right...until I remembered that I had this recipe written down to try!  It's been written down for a long while, waiting patiently in the wings while I've been baking up a storm and making other yummy treats :) And knowing that Erica has a LOVE for Reeses Peanut Butter Cups... I found this recipe fitting to be on her blog! :)

May I introduce to you....

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

These babies deserve a standing ovation!  I have to be honest.  The chocolate/peanut butter combination has never been one that makes me weak in the knees.  I mean, don't get me wrong... I like it and all.  It's just never been my favorite.  Well, my dears... that opinion is no longer!  Especially if the combination of chocolate and peanut butter comes in the form of THESE cupcakes!  The cake is good and moist and oh so chocolatey and the frosting.... O! M! G!  It is to.die.for! It's like silk! Am I coming across loud and clear here?  Well, if that isn't enough to take your breath away, how about the wonderful peanut butter ball baked into the cupcake? Huh?  Now, what are you thinkin'?  Yeah!  That's right! Go make them NOW!  They're calling your name aren't they?  Well, I have a dozen in the fridge... and they're calling mine!   I won't lie:)

I sure hope you enjoy these!  Come on over to my little paradise on the blogosphere for more fun recipes!  I'd love to see you there! :)

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes
adapted by From Cupboard to Cupboard
original recipe by Annie's Eats
printable recipe

For the Filling:
1 cup powdered sugar
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
4 Tbsp butter, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla

For the Cake:
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sour cream
2 tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs

For the frosting:
8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
4 tbsp butter, softened
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
3 1/4 cups powdered sugar
1 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed


Preheat the over to 350 degrees.  Line two cupcake pans with paper liners. 

To make the filling, combine the powdered sugar, peanut butter and vanilla in a bowl.  Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until well combined.  Roll the mixture into 1 inch balls (at least 24)... I used a small cookie scoop to make them all even:)  and set aside on a baking sheet.  I put mine in the refrigerator until I needed them.

To make the cake batter, combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl; whisk together and set aide.  In a liquid measuring cup, stir together the sour cream, milk and vanilla.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter and sugar and beat on medium-high speed untl light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl as needed.  With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the dry ingredients and the sour cream mixture, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients.  Mix just until incorporated.

Spoon a tablespoon or two of batter into the bottom of each cupcake liner.  Place a ball of the peanut butter filling in each cupcake well and top with the remaining batter so that all the cups are filled.  Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Allow to cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting, in the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the cream cheese, butter and peanut butter until smooth.  Slowly mix in the powdered sugar, beating until smooth and well blended.  Mix in the whipped topping until smooth and fluffy.  Frost cooled cupcakes as desired!  (I use the Wilton 2D tip)

Thanks again girls for inviting me over!  It's been fun! :)

Happy Cooking!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Menu Monday

Can we say slacker?!  That's what I was last week.  It was a busy one.  A lot of late nights getting in, and a lot of nights I didn't even cook.  Ha!  So that means more repeats from last week.  I do apologize.  But, isn't that how it is in the summer time?  I think so.  Hoping for a more mellow week this time around.  And my camera just made it to Illinois this morning.  It is taking FOREVER to get here!  I did sneak a few pictures with my dad and sisters cameras this week, so hopefully I'll get those two recipes posted.  I have had my sister here since Saturday and I have loved every minute of it.  Even though she still is in tired new mommy mode, it's just nice knowing she's in my house.  Anyhoo...enough of my blabbering.  Here is this weeks menu!

Tacos!!!  One of my favorite dinners.

Bratwurst and Homemade Mac and Cheese

Chicken Cordon Bleu

Sloppy Joes

We are planning to take the kids out of town to stay overnight somewhere, so no cooking for me!  :o)


Chicken Taco Pasta

Have a great week!!! 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Pineapple Coconut Cake

Here's another favorite summer recipe.  Grandma would bring this cake to all of our summer picnics.  It's delish!  Make it this weekend for your family bbq.  You won't be disappointed.  :o)  Have a great weekend everyone!  Pray my camera shows up soon. 

This is another recipe that my Grandma passed on to me.  I took a bite of it yesterday and it reminded me of her.  I've been eating this cake since I was a little girl.  It went from me picking off all the coconut and just eating the icing, to now devouring the entire thing.  All the flavors go together deliciously!  The cake is lemon, topped with crushed pineapple, a vanilla cream frosting, and sprinkled on top of that, shredded coconut.  So YUM!  It's a springy, summery cake and I was excited to make it.  Even though it doesn't feel like Spring, the cake sure tasted like it.  :o)

Pineapple Coconut Cake
1 box of lemon cake mix
1 can of crushed pineapple
3.5 oz package of instant vanilla pudding
1/2 c. milk
16 oz cool whip
2 1/2 c. shredded coconut

Make the cake mix according to the box and pour it into a big 11x17 cookie sheet or two 13x9 dishes.  Bake according to box directions.  (The box didn't say how long to bake the big sheet, so I did it on 350 for 20 minutes, and it was perfect.)  Remove from oven and poke holes all over the cake with a fork.  When it's still warm spoon the pineapple and juice on top of the cake.  Let it cool completely.  Mix instant pudding with 1/2 c. milk until nice and smooth.  Fold in your cool whip.  Spread it over the top of the pineapple, and then sprinkle coconut all over the top.  Refridgerate for several hours or over night.  Feeds about 20-25 people.  Perfect for a picnic.  Hope you enjoy it!

Have a great week!!!!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Re-post Summer Appetizers

I apologize for reposting! But, I have a great excuse. My camera broke. I was using my Dad's for a little while, but for some crazy reason he took it back. I guess he needed it or something? Anyhoo...I'm expecting a new one through UPS anyday, so there might be a few re posts in the days to come. I love this post, because I LOVE both of these appetizers. They are both so yummy! Sorry about the jalepeno story too. But it is a true story. :o)   Happy Wednesday!!

This week I chose to do appetizers.  Who doesn't love appetizers?!  I had some jalepeños to use up, and thought I'd make my hubs' favorite, Jalepeño Poppers!  I love making these for family get togethers.  They are always a hit.  We had these with tacos and they were gone before I knew it, and it was only us and my Dad.  :o)  You do need two kitchen tools, toothpicks for fastening the bacon in place and latex gloves.  YOU NEED THE GLOVES!  *lol*  One time I didn't use gloves, and I itched my nose, or picked it...I don't recall...and it burned like no other!  I couldn't get the pain to go away, so me being the dork that I am stuck my nose in milk.  HA!  It seriously helped.  So...yeah...use the gloves!

All you need is 4 simple ingredients

10 Jalepeños
8 oz Cream Cheese, softened
Season Salt to taste
1 pkg of bacon cut in half

Wash your peppers.  With gloves on cut stems off peppers and then in half scraping all the seeds and ribs out, unless you want them SUPER spicy.  Line them up on a cookie sheet.  Stir in a a few shakes of season salt into your cream cheese.  Taste it til it's good for you.  Stir it up good then start spooning it into the halves of peppers.  1 pkg should fill 20 halves perfectly, unless you are using huge peppers.  Wrap bacon around peppers, fastening them with toothpicks.  Bake at 400 degrees.  Keep an eye on them.  I don't time mine.  But I like the bacon extra crispy.  Your house will smell awesome.  Remove and set on a paper towel to drain fat and remove tooth picks before eating.  Enjoy!


Okay, I'm a little embarrassed that I'm related to the above person. The only thing that's not crazy about her above entry is the fact that I'm in love with those Jalapeno Poppers. They are amazing. Anyway, I'll be honest with you. Appetizers are not my forte. I guess this is one area I could stretch myself to learn more of. I could only think of one appetizer recipe that I personally have made and enjoyed. This recipe is from one of Aaron's Aunts. She is a fabulous cook and throws fabulous parties. You can't go wrong with a recipe from her.

Hot Artichoke Dip
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
4 oz. parmesan cheese, grated
1 c. mayonnaise
4 oz. can diced green chiles
14 oz. can artichoke hearts, chopped

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Pour in an ovenproof container and bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes or until nice and bubbly. Serve with tortilla chips, crackers, or a crusty bread.

This is a great recipe for the holidays. So not healthy, but oh so delicious. Enjoy!
Source: Yvonne Moore

Monday, July 18, 2011

Menu Monday

Who knows what this week will bring.  Last week we had a trip to ER, birthday parties, soccer practices, 4H, and now me and my youngest are sick!  Can someone please throw me a freakin' bone!?  So, if i'm slow at getting posts up, you'll know why.  And I apologize ahead of time.  :o)  Onto this weeks version of Menu Monday!!

Ham and Cheese Bagels

Chicken Cordon Bleu

Tender Creamy Cube Steaks

Sloppy Joes

Chicken Enchiladas

Eat out?!

Sour Cream Noodle Bake

Pretty easy week of recipes.  I don't know about you, but in the summer we don't get in til late, so it's nice to throw something easy together.  There are a bunch of new recipes I want to try.  Now if I can find some ambition.  Anyone know where I can find some?!  :o)  Have a GREAT week!!

Friday, July 15, 2011


Snickerdoodles have to be one of my favorite cookies.  I don't make them a lot, because I know if I did I would eat the entire batch.  I just about ate this entire batch.  I started out with a huge stack to take pictures and ended up with a not so tall stack in the end.  These are just too dang tasty to keep in my house! 

1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. shortening
1 1/2 c. sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
2 3/4 c. flour
2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

2 Tbsp sugar for coating
2 Tbsp cinnamon for coating

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Cream butter, shortening and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add eggs and vanilla and mix well.  Blend in dry ingredients.  Shape dough into balls and roll in the sugar and cinnamon mix.  Place on cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes.  They will still look a little doughy once they are done but will harden up a bit.  Try not to burn yourself while eating one.  :o)  Transfer to cooling rack immediately.

Have a wonderful and safe weekend.  We are having a birthday party on Saturday.  Hope it's a success.  :o)  Wish me luck!!  See you Monday!!

Source-All recipes

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Welcome our Guest Kelsey from A Spice A Day

We're excited to have Kelsey guest post on our blog today. She's been a dear friend of mine (Erica) for years! She's an awesome wife, mother, friend, writer, and cook. So grateful that she accepted the invite to share one of her yummy recipes off her blog A Spice A Day!! 

Hello to all of you Giant Blog of Cooking, Crafting, and Other Fun Activities fans! I'm Kelsey from over at A Spice A Day! I'm so excited to be posting on this fabulous lil' blog. These two ladies amaze me and I can only strive to be like them. Especially in the crafting department...but for your sake, I won't elaborate on that. Due to repeated and highly failed attempts, it's a sore subject anyways...
I want to start out by saying CONGRATS to Monica and her family on their new baby girl! She's a real dolly! Enjoy her while you can cause I'm tempted to snatch her up...
Okay! On to the recipe. You've heard of Nutella right? If you haven't you're in a sad, lonely state of living. Pick some up now and try it, uh cause, you'll love it. And as an ice cream, it's even impossibly better. An ITALIAN ice cream, no less. Gelato is the best stuff ever, not to mention it has less fat...good for any hips or thighs. This recipe will rock your socks off and it's easy. Who doesn't like easy?

Nutella Gelato
  • 2 cups Whole Milk
  • 1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
  • 3/4 cups Sugar, Divided
  • 4 whole Egg Yolks
  • 1/2 cup Nutella
  • 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 8 pieces Baci Candy (a Chocolate Hazelnut Candy (I used white chocolate, because white chocolate and I are best friends)), To Serve
In a large saucepan, combine the whole milk, heavy whipping cream and 1/2 cup of sugar. Heat over medium heat until the sugar has dissolved, about 5 minutes.
In a large mixing bowl with the whisk attachment, whip the egg yolks with the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar for about 4 minutes until it’s thick and pale yellow.
Take 1/2 cup of the heavy whipping cream/milk mixture and slowly pour it into the mixing bowl. Whisk it together. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan.
Heat over medium low for about 10 minutes until the mixture is thick.
Then remove it from the heat and strain it through a fine mesh sieve into a large bowl.
Add in the Nutella and vanilla extract and whisk it in.
Cover the Nutella gelato mixture with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator to chill overnight. If you don’t have to chill it overnight, chill the mixture for at least 2 hours.
Once it’s done chilling, freeze the ice cream according to your manufacturer’s instructions.

*If you don't have an ice cream maker, here's how to do it!*
Place your mixture in the freezer for thirty minutes. Take it out and whip it up with a hand mixer or stir it vigorously with a spatula. The point is to break up the ice crystals that are forming so that your ice cream will be smoother. Repeat this two more times in 30-minute increments. Worked for Kelso!!
Cut up some Baci candy or other chocolate hazelnut candy and sprinkle on top. Enjoy!

I usually don't remember to take pictures of the cooking process for my blog, plus it's tedious, and I have almost no patience, but there's just something about separated eggs that's so...What's the word?

The eggs get me started on everything else! I'm not weird am I?

It may seem impossible at first for the Nutella to whisk into your mixture, but don't give up! It will eventually become smooth.

I'm sure you can use any kind of chocolate, or cut up candybar, or fruit! Or CANDY!
I get excited over all the options you have for toppings on this heaven in a bowl.

So Nutella...Incredible.
Mix them together and you get the most perfect blend of dessert.
Thank you all for bearing with me! If you found this interesting, you can always join me in the rest of my crazy antics over at A Spice A Day. And thank you to Erica and Monica for inviting me to guest post! It's been a real pleasure! Much love to the two of you, and congratulations again to Monica and her cute family on their precious new addition.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Cowboy Calzones

We really enjoyed these.  They made enough to feed us the next day for lunch too.  I think I even sent some home with my dad, and just realized he never told me if he liked them or rude!  :o)  O'well.  We liked them.  I will make them again, but next time I'm gonna add LOTS more cheese.  I like lots of cheese in my calzones.  These were really easy to throw together.  And as you can see, my picky toddler loved them too!  YAY!

Cowboy Calzones
1/2 lb ground sausage
1 lb ground beef
1/2 onion, diced
1-10 oz can tomatoes and chilies
8 oz whole milk ricotta cheese
1/2 c. grated mozzarella cheese
1/2 c. grated monterey jack cheese
1 egg, beaten
salt and pepper
olive oil for brushing

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  In a large skillet, combine sausage, hamburger, and onion.  Cook until brown.  Drain excess grease.  Pour in tomatoes and chilies.  Stir to combine and cook for about 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and let it cool a little.  In a bowl, combine all the cheeses and egg.  Add a dash of salt and pepper.  Add the cooled meat mix to the cheese mix and stir gently to combine.  Divide the pizza dough into 8 equal size balls. Roll out on a floured surface to make a 6 inch circle.  Place 1/8th of the meat and cheese mix in the middle of each circle.  Fold the circle in half and gently press to flatten and spread the filling inside.  Press with a fork along the edge to seal your calzone closed.  Transfer to a greased baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining dough and filling.  Brush calzones with olive oil.  Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown.  ENJOY!


Happy Tuesday!!

Source-The Pioneer Woman

Monday, July 11, 2011

Menu Monday

Hi, Everyone! Hope you all had a great weekend.  Ours was pretty good.  We had a couple awesome storms rolls through.  Not too great for the farmers with their hay down (Dad), but I personally love a summer storm.  Smells so good and cools things off for a little while.

Monica finally made it home.  I haven't seen her yet, but I can't wait til she comes our way to visit. 

This week is gonna be another busy one, so i'm hoping I can cook more than I did last week.  Here's another Menu Monday.

Hotdog boats



It's my lil' mans 3rd birthday, so we might be going out to eat.


McCoy's birthday party, i'm making Chicken Salad Croissants


Have a great week!!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Yummy White Bread

I've been searching for an easy white bread recipe with great results and I think I found it.  I've made it about 4 times since and each time with a yummy end product.  I so very easily could finish off an entire loaf in one day with lots of butter.  I got this recipe from my friend Kelsey, at A Spice A Day.  She will be guest posting for us here next week.  :o)  I can't wait! 

Yummy White Bread
2 c. warm water (110 degrees)
2 Tbsp. white sugar
2 packets of yeast, or I use 4 teaspoons of the saf-instant yeast
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 c. vegetable oil
6 c. bread flour
cooking spray

In your mixing bowl combine water, sugar, and yeast.  Stir to combine and let it sit until it starts growing and gets all foamy.  With your dough hook mix in salt and oil.  On low speed mix in 1 cup of flour at a time.  Once all the flour is in turn your mixer up to medium speed and knead for 5 minutes.  If you don't have a mixer with a dough hook then knead by hand until dough is nice and smooth.  After it's smooth take dough out and add a little oil to the bottom of the bowl and roll dough around to coat it.  Cover bowl and let the dough rise until doubled in size.  About 1 hour.  Dough is done when bubbles start to form on the top.  Punch down down and divide into 2 balls.  Spray 2-9x5 bread pans.  Place dough in them and cover and let rise for about 30 minutes. Don't let them get too high!  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until it's a nice golden brown.  Dump them out onto a wire rack and brush butter on tops while they are still warm. 

Happy Friday!  Have a fun and safe weekend!  See you for Menu Monday!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

The title should have got you.  Because i've said before that chocolate and peanut butter are soulmates! Plain and  :o)  These tasted JUST like Reeses Peanut Butter Cups.  They were amazing!!!  The kids loved them too.  I had to take the rest to a family reunion or I would have sat down with a spoon and ate the entire pan.  That's just how I roll.


Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars
1 1/2 c. graham cracker crumbs
1 lb. powdered sugar
1 1/2 c. creamy peanut butter
1 c. butter, melted
12 oz bag of chocolate chips (My family prefers milk chocolate)
2 tsp creamy peanut butter

In a large bowl beat together graham crackers, powdered sugar, 1 1/2 c. peanut butter, and melted butter.  Mix until well combined.  Press into bottom of a parchment paper lined 13x9 dish. 

In a microwave safe bowl add your chocolate chips and 2 tsp peanut butter.  Microwave in 30 second intervals, making sure to stir after each one.  Do this until it is all melted and smooth.  Pour on top of peanut butter mix, and spread evenly.  Refridgerate until chocolate is set.  If the chocolate gets too hard, just let it sit on the counter for a little while and it will soften up a bit.  Cut into bars and ENJOY!

Have a happy Thursday!!  Oh...and guess what!?  I get to see my sister and the new baby soon!  I can't wait!!! 

Source-Our Best Bites

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Menu Tuesday

Hi, Everyone!!!  Hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July.  Mine was alright.  Wasn't the same without my sister and brother in town.  It was pretty low key, but still enjoyable.  Kids make it so much more fun.  My daughter was in the parade this year with her soccer team, and it was just dang cute to see my older son at the parade.  He was so excited!!! 

So...first things first...Monica had her baby!!  And...IT'S A GIRL!  She is a gorgeous!  She weighed 6 lbs 14 oz.  She looks a lot like her older brother and sister.  Mom and Baby are doing great!  They are home now and taking it easy before their long trip back home.  I can not wait to hug and kiss on that baby and give my sis a great big hug.  I sure miss all them!

Onto our Menu Monday a day late.  I'm hoping to get back in the groove of things.  My house is a disaster, my laundry pile is as big as Oxford Mountain, and my fridge is empty!  :o)  So, let's get to it, because as you can see I have TONS to do!

Monday-4th of July!  I PIGGED OUT!

Tuesday-Lemon Butter Chicken


Thursday-Grilled hot dogs and homemade mac and cheese

Friday-BBQ'd chicken and oven baked steak fries, and maybe a green salad

Saturday-I'm hoping my husband will catch some fish this morning, so we can have some for dinner.  Cross your fingers!

Sunday-Roast and mashed taters and gravy

If you ever see a repeat of what I posted last week, it is because I got lazy and decided not to cook dinner, or we had something else happening.  :o)

Sorry no pictures today.  I got some yummy recipes coming up this week!  Have a great week!!!

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