Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Birthday card barrage!

September is a BUSY month for us, birthday-wise. I had10 birthdays to prepare for! And so I made all the cards ahead of time (which doesn't mean I've sent them OUT on time, but that's another issue for another blog ;-))

Here are two of the designs I'm sending. I have a few more up my sleeve for another day :-)

The "Celebrate" comes from the Celebrations cartridge on the Cricut.

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Sunday, September 19, 2010

Food Obsession: Chocolate Covered Peanuts

I have a small addiction to chocolate covered peanuts.
Before I got pregnant, I was doing Weight Watchers. I realized I had no way to gauge my peanut treat intake if I didn't strictly measure my peanut clusters. So I bought a mini muffin tin, weighed out my peanuts and put in a precise amount of chocolate/butterscotch mixture. My points value (depending on the methods I used) came out to be between 2-3 pts per cluster. WORTH it :-)

Here's my muffin tin full of peanuts, just waiting for the oozy chocolate/butterscotch mix.

I always melt my chocolate over a double boiler, not in the microwave. I just like the way it turns out better. And if you can get your hands on a *glass* bowl, those work better than metal. If you can't get glass, plastic works too. Metal seems to get too hot and can seize up your chocolate. Be sure when using a double boiler that you don't get ANY WATER in your chips! Mix well while it's melting, because the chips won't change shape until you do - and you risk scorching it!

Filling the cups - almost there!

I pop mine in the deep freezer for a short amount of time (usually because I don't care if they're set before I start eating them ;-)) and then you can just pop them out onto a large cutting board or your counter!

You can make them "prettier" if you mix the chocolate and peanuts together, then put them in the cups. However, as I mentioned, these are the WW version :-)

My Recipe: 

3 oz lightly salted peanuts
10oz chocolate/butterscotch chips - I prefer about a 60/40 mix chocolate to butterscotch, but play with these numbers for yourself (you WILL make them more than once - they are addictive!)

This makes 18-2pt snacks. 

Sunday, September 12, 2010


I never went apple picking as a kid. It's something that started when my husband and I got married. His favorite dessert is a homemade apple pie and his birthday is late September, so we always go around his birthday to pick our own apples for his birthday pie.

We went earlier this year, because the weather permitted. We left with 15lbs of apples! I made pie a few weeks ago (not a stellar job and I have enough apples, I may just try to redeem myself before his birthday rolls around!) but in my prengnacy haze, I have been CRAVING an apple fritter.

The *best* apple fritters from from Patterson's Fruit Farm in Ohio. However, I live in Missouri now, and that's a LONG drive for what is essentially a doughnut :-) So I scoured the internet for a recipe. I landed on this one from The Picky Apple.

I have LOTS of apples left, and I wanted to use one Jonathan and one Golden Delicious, so I doubled her recipe. I also added WAY more cinnamon than the recipe calls for. Hubby loves cinnamon-apple and preferred it with a bit more "spice".

Here's my bowl of batter (sorry, I'm trying to get better about taking pictures at each step, but I was so excited to eat them, I forgot to take more pictures :-)
Mmmmm wouldn't be a real doughnut/fritter if I didn't fry it.

And a bit of icing. Mmmmmmmm.

And you'll be thrilled to know, they reheat well (toasted in a toaster oven) for dessert that same night ;-)