Apple Chips

The other day I let my 2 (almost 3) year old son pick out the apples we bought last week. Little did I know he picked out the sourest apples I’ve ever tasted. After trying the extremely tart apples (Pink Lady Apples) I had no idea what I was going to do with them. That’s when I got the idea of making Apple Chips. I’m always buying them anyway, so why not make them. Today I’m going to share with how to make your very own Apple Chips.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

4 Apples (They don’t have to be tart)

Cinnamon

Sugar

Parchment Paper

Slicer

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Start by preheating your oven to 200 degrees. Place the  Then are going to slice your apples using your slicer. (The thinner the slice the crisper it will turn out.) Be sure to remove the seeds.

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Next sprinkle as little or as much sugar and cinnamon on both sides of apple slices. Then bake in the oven for three hours on the bottom rack. Turn off the oven. This part may seem a little crazy but let them stay in the oven overnight. They will be extra crispy.

Then the next morning take them out and store them or gobble them up.Enjoy!!!

 

Bird Nests

One of my earliest school memories is of being at an end of the year class party and eating a Haystack for the very first time. It was amazing. Years have passed and I’ve often thought of that delicious piece of candy. However I haven’t had another one since. So the other day that memory popped in my head and I instantly knew what I had to do. I had to make some Haystacks but since it’s almost Easter I decided to be a little festive and make Bird Nest Haystack. Needless to say they turned out absolutely mouth watering. Today I’m going to show you how to make Bird Nests/Haystacks.

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Here’s what you’ll need

1 Bag of Butterscotch Morsels

1 Cup of Peanut Butter

1/2 Teaspoon of Vanilla

4 Cups of Chow Mein Noodles

1 Bag of Egg Shaped Candy ( I used Whoppers Robbin Eggs)

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Start by placing the 4 cups of chow mein noodles in a large bowl. Set aside. Then in a separate microwavable bowl pour the butterscotch morsels and add the peanut butter. Melting the mixture in 30 second increments. Be sure to stir after each 30 seconds.

Once the mixture is complete melted stir in the vanilla. Then pour it over chow mien noodles. Stir until the noodles are covered.  Using cooking spray, spray your muffin tin.

Next spoon the mixture in to the pan. Using your spoon dig little ditch into the center of each nest. (This is so your eggs will sit down inside of the nest, instead of on top of it.) Then place your eggs in the nest (This allows the eggs to stick in to the nest) Chill the Birds nest for about an hour.

Then using a butter knife remove the nest from the muffin pan and enjoy!!!

 

Rice Krispy Treat Messy Eggs

When I was living in Chicago back in 2010, I didn’t have anyone to spend Easter with. I wasn’t the only one alone for the holiday, a few of my other close friends were by themselves too. So we all decided to make our own Easter celebration. Together we made a pretty amazing dinner and then took a trip to the beach. It’s one of my fondest memories of my time in Chicago.

One of the desserts we made was Rice Krispy Treat Eggs. They were delicious. Now that I have a husband and a son, I want to make awesome memories with them. So what better way to create more memories than by taking something special from a past memory and putting a new twist on it. Today I’m going to show you how to make Rice Krispy Treat Messy Eggs.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

10 Cups of Rice Krispy Treats

1/2 Cup or 1 Stick of Butter

6 Cups of  Miniature Marshmallows

1 1/2  Teaspoons of Vanilla

1/4 Teaspoon of Salt

1 Bag of White Melts

Food Coloring  (A Variety of Colors)

Lollipop Sticks (Optional)

Plastic Easter Eggs

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In a large pot melt the butter on low heat. When the butter is melted, add 3 cups of marshmallows, the vanilla, and salt.

While waiting for the marshmallow mixture to reduce, pour the melts in a bowl. Then place it in the microwave for 30 second intervals until the melts are completely melted. Next stir, in the food coloring of your choice. Make as many different colors as you’d like. Then set aside.

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Once the marshmallows mixture is smooth. Then stir in the remaining marshmallows until they are melted.

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Then stir  Rice Krispies into the melted marshmallow mixture. Set aside.

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Take some butter or cooking spray and grease the inside of the plastic eggs.

 

Using a spoon or your hand fill both sides of the plastic egg with the Rice Krispy Treat mixture. Then close it to get the mold. Next, remove Rice Krispy Treat and place it on a baking pan. (Wax paper or Aluminum foil will save you on clean up) You may want to flatten the bottom out a little so it sits better on the pan or if you plan on placing it on a lollipop stick.

 

Once you have all of the eggs molded the real fun begins. Using a spoon drizzle your colored melts over the Rice Krispy Treats. Repeat this step using different colors, as much or as little as you want.Turn on some music and let the kiddos help out. (Tip: If your melts start to harden before you are finished place them in the microwave for an additional 30 seconds)

When that’s finished let them dry for a bit and then enjoy!!!

 

 

 

 

Apple Cheesecake Bars

I tend to be a cheesecake snob but with good reason. My friend (more like my brother from another mother) Shaun has had me addicted to his Turtle Cheesecake since high school. I tried eating The Cheesecake Factory’s cheesecake after having his and was beyond disappointed. My husband hates cheesecake but he’ll eat Shaun’s. He made us little mini turtle cheesecakes for our gender reveal party a couple of years ago and all of our friends and family members swooped in like savages to get one. I didn’t even get one. LOL. So believe me when I tell you, his cheesecake is heavenly. If you’re ever in Hattiesburg, Ms you’ve got to visit Cotton Blues (he’s the Pastry Chef there) and try a piece of cheesecake. The other food there is great too but his cheesecakes are the things dreams are made out of.

Although Shaun refuses to share his recipe with anyone, (Including me, his trustworthy, loyal,sister from another mister, and long time friend) I thought I’d give a cheesecake recipe a try. Now I knew I wasn’t going to attempt to try to make a traditional cheesecake.  I decided to make Apple Cheesecake Bars instead and they taste pretty great!! So today I’m going to show you how to make Apple Cheesecake Bars.

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Here’s What You’ll Need:

BAR INGREDIENTS:

2 1/2 Cups of All Purpose Flour

1/2 Cup of Brown Sugar, Packed

1/4 Teaspoon of Salt

1 Cup (2 sticks) of Butter, Softened

2 8oz Packs of Cream Cheese Softened

1/2 Cup and 2 Tablespoons of Sugar

1 Table Spoon of Cinnamon

1 Teaspoon of Pure Vanilla Extract

4 Apples of your choosing, cored and chopped up ( I used granny smith apples)

CRUMBLE TOPPING INGREDIENTS:

2/3 Cup of Rolled Oats

2/3 Cup All Purpose Flour

1/2 Cup of Brown Sugar, Packed

1/4 Teaspoon of Salt

1/4 Teaspoon of Cinnamon

6 Tablespoons of Butter

 

First you’ll need to preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Grab a 13×9 inch pan and spray it  with nonstick spray, then set it aside.

In a large bowl combine the flour, brown sugar, and salt. Using a pastry blender or a fork, cut in the 2 sticks of butter until the mixture is crumbly. When you’ve done that pour the flour mixture in the pan. Press it evenly in the pan. Bake it for 15 minutes or until the edges are brown.

Next using an electric mixer, mix the cream cheese until it’s creamy. Once the cream cheese is smooth, slowly add in the 1/2 cup of sugar, eggs, and pure vanilla extract. When all of the ingredients are completely combined, pour the cream cheese mixture over the warm crust.

Then place the chopped apples in a small bowl. Add in the cinnamon and 2 tablespoons of sugar. Stir until all of the apple pieces are covered. Then spoon the apple mixture on the cream cheese mixture. Set aside.

In a medium sized bowl stir the rolled oats, flour, brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. Using a fork or pastry blender cut in the butter until the mixture is crumbly. (I call my pastry blender a “Butter Cutter”) Then sprinkle the oat mixture over apples and bake for 35-40 minutes.

Here’s the part where I should tell you to let it cool a couple of hours before cutting it but who really wants to wait that long. lol So cut it whenever you like and enjoy!!

 

 

 

 

 

Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars

I’m a bit of a peanut butter fanatic and my husband’s favorite cereal is Cheerios. This recipe brings the two together in a tasty treat. Today I’m going to show you how to make Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars.

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Here’s What You’ll Need:

6 Cups of Cheerios

1 1/3 Cup of Honey

1 Cup of Peanut Butter

1 Teaspoon of Pure Vanilla Extract

First place the 6 cups of Cheerios in a large bowl and set it aside. Then in a sauce pan cook your honey and peanut butter on medium heat until they are melted. Then add the Pure Vanilla Extract.

IMG_0214.JPGNext pour the peanut butter and honey combination over the Cheerios stir.

IMG_0229.JPGGrab a 9×13 inch pan and pour the Cheerio mixture into it. (I lined mine with parchment paper for easy clean up. ) Then place it in the fridge for two hours.

IMG_0252.JPGAfter time is up, cut into squares and enjoy!

Homemade Candied Pecans

I spent a semester in Chicago, while in college and I absolutely loved it! Chicago is the greatest city and you can’t connivence me otherwise. Even thought my time there was brief, I made memories and friendships I know will last me a lifetime.

One of my favorite memories was when my friend, Angel, and I visited Navy Pier for the 2nd time. The first time we visited, it was still winter and Lake Michigan was frozen over. It was like a winter wonderland, absolutely beautiful. The second time we went was in the spring, and I needed to buy souvenirs. While walking around talking we were suddenly hit with the most amazing smell. This older gentleman was making candied pecans at his cart. We walked up to the man and started a conversation. He told us about his journey to America and how he just lost his wife but that he knew he’d see her again someday. We bought some of his freshly made candied pecans. He had a ton of different flavors but we went with the cinnamon. I’ve had candied pecans before and I don’t know if it was the conversation we had with this man or what but these were absolutely the best!!

Last year my husband, Shae, and I were at a local festival. There a booth was selling freshly made candied pecans. As ridiculous as it may seem, I was extremely excited. That was until I tried them and the excitement soon faded. They were okay but paled in comparison to the ones that I’d had at Navy Pier. After seeing my disappointment, Shae, said to me, “I bet you could make them”. This lead me on the hunt for the perfect candied pecan recipe. What kind of terrible person would I be if I didn’t share it with y’all?! Today I’m going to show you how to make the best candied pecans.

Here’s What You’ll Need:

2 Egg Whites

4 Teaspoons of Water

4 Teaspoons of Pure Vanilla Extract

2lbs Pecans Halves

2 Cups of Sugar

2 Tablespoons of Cinnamon

1 Teaspoon of Salt

*This recipe makes a ton of Candied Pecans which is perfect for sharing 😀

IMG_9798.JPGFirst you’ll want to preheat your oven to 250 degrees. In a gallon ziplock bag mix the sugar, cinnamon, and salt.

IMG_9803 Then in an extra large bowl whisk the egg white, water, and vanilla until it’s frothy.IMG_9804.JPG Add the pecans to the egg white mixture and stir until all the pecans are coated.

IMG_9807  Once that’s finished place the coated pecans into the ziplock bag with the sugar mixture. Next you with shake it up until the pecans are fully covered. *Dancing while doing this will only bring you more happiness. Spray the baking sheets with cooking spray.IMG_9808  Then spread the pecans out on the baking sheets. Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes.  IMG_9815.JPG

You will not regret making these!! Well, you might if you can’t stop eating them. Enjoy!!!

 

Recipe Source:FireFlyTales