Saturday, June 25, 2011

Peanut Candy Bar Treats

One of my favorite candy bars are paydays. I love the sweet and salty combo. I think that's why I love these treats so much, they taste a lot like a payday.

I have always made them with peanuts and peanut butter chips, but I've also made a batch with cashews and butterscotch chips for Tyler who can't have peanuts. They were so good! I'm not sure I can pick a favorite. I guess you'll just have to try them both ways.

1 box of yellow cake mix
1/3 cup plus 1/4 cup melted butter or margarine, divided
1 egg
3 cups mini marshmallows
1 cup light corn syrup
1 1/2 cups peanut butter chips or butterscotch chips
3 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups rice crispy cereal
3 cups salted peanuts or salted cashews

Preheat oven to 350. Beat cake mix, 1/3 cup melted butter and egg in a medium bowl. Press mixture into an ungreased 9x12 glass baking dish. Bake until lightly browned, about 12 minutes. Sprinkle on your marshmallows and bake for another 10 minutes or until marshmallows are all puffy. Let cool.

Combine corn syrup, remaining butter and peanut butter chips in a large saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until chips are melted, about 5 minutes. Stir in your vanilla. Add the cereal and peanuts, mix well. Spread over slightly cooled marshmallows. Cool completely before cutting into bars. Store in an airtight container.


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Surprise Cookies

Surprise Cookies


  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 12 large marshmallows, cut in half horizontally
  • Chocolate Frosting for Surprise Cookies  (I used store bought frosting)


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add egg, milk, and vanilla, and beat until well combined. Add reserved flour mixture; mix on low speed until combined.
  3. Using a tablespoon or 1 3/4-inch ice cream scoop, drop dough onto ungreased baking sheets, about 2 inches apart. Bake until cookies begin to spread and become firm, 10 to 12 minutes.
  4. Remove baking sheets from oven, and place a marshmallow, cut-side down, in the center of each cookie, pressing down slightly. Return to oven, and continue baking until marshmallows begins to melt, 2 to 2 1/2 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
  5. Spread about 1 tablespoon of frosting over each marshmallow, starting in the center and continuing outward until marshmallow is covered.


Thursday, June 16, 2011

Broccoli Slaw Salad


If your looking for an easy, light salad for a summer get together, this is it! It is one of our favorites!

1 pkg. Broccoli slaw (found by the bagged salad in the produce section)
2 or 3 stalks of green onions, chopped
sunflower seeds
sliced almonds
2 pkgs. chicken flavored Ramen noodles (it has to be the chicken, I tried the beef flavored once & it was awful!)

2 chicken seasoning packets from the Ramen noodles
1/3 cup vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil

*Smash the Ramen Noodles, them mix with the broccoli slaw. Sprinkle the green onions, sunflower seeds, almonds & crasins onto the Broccoli slaw & mix together. Now I know there are no exact measurements for those last three ingredients, it's because some people like their salad stuffed (me) while others would prefer the taste of the Broccoli slaw to be the main thing (my hubby). So add the ingredients slowly until you find your perfect combination. Set aside.

*In a separate bowl, mix the chicken seasoning, vinegar, sugar & oil together. Pour the dressing mixture slowly over the noodle mixture. BE CAREFUL not to dump the entire dressing mixture on all at once, I don't like my salad drenched so I add it slowly while mixing just until it's coated. Most of the time I don't use all of the dressing. Mix well & serve immediately.


Friday, June 10, 2011

Double-Decker Fudge

Double-Decker Fudge
1 cup REESE'S® Peanut Butter Chips
1 cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips or HERSHEY'S MINI CHIPS Semi-Sweet Chocolate
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 jar (7 ounces) marshmallow creme
3/4 cup evaporated milk
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter or margarine
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Line 8-inch square pan with foil, extending foil over edges of pan. Measure peanut butter chips into one medium bowl and chocolate chips into second medium bowl. In heavy 3-quart saucepan, combine sugar, marshmallow creme, evaporated milk and butter. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture boils; boil and stir 5 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Immediately stir 1/2 of hot mixture (1 1/2 cups) into peanut butter chips until chips are completely melted; quickly pour into prepared pan. Stir remaining 1/2 of hot mixture into chocolate chips until chips are completely melted. Quickly spread over top of peanut butter layer. Cool; refrigerate 1 1/2 hours or until firm. Remove from pan; place on cutting board. Peel off foil; cut into 1-inch squares. Store tightly covered in refrigerator.

Makes about 5 dozen pieces or about 2 pounds candy

Peanut Butter Fudge: Omit chocolate chips; place 1 2/3 cups (10-ounce package) Reese's® Peanut Butter Chips in large bowl. Cook fudge mixture as directed above; add to chips, stirring until chips are completely melted. Pour into prepared pan; cool to room temperature.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

cherry brown butter bars

It's cherry season!

We went to my Mom's house and picked baskets of cherries. When I came home I immediately hopped online to see what I could make with these delicious fellas. I found this recipe on SmittenKitchen and loved it so much that I made it twice. The second time I changed it up a bit. You see, I love cherries and almonds together. So I substituted half of the vanilla extract with almond extract and ground up some almonds to use in place of half the flour. So so so amazing! One more thing I changed the second time around, I thought it needed more cherries, so I covered the crust with them. It really just depends on you.

Here's what you'll need for the crust:

7 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1/3 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract (or 1/8 vanilla and 1/8 almond)

1 cup plus 1 tablespoon flour (or 1/2 cup finely ground almonds and 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour)

pinch of salt

And for the filling you will need:

1/2 cup sugar

2 large eggs

pinch of salt

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon vanilla (or 1/2 vanilla and 1/2 almond)

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, diced

2-3 cups of sliced, pitted cherries

First you need to make the crust. Preheat the oven to 350. Line a 8x8 pan with foil, set aside. In a medium bowl mix together your melted butter, sugar and vanilla. Add the flour and salt and stir well. Press mixture into the bottom of your prepared pan. Bake for 17 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool a bit on a wire rack.

While your crust is baking you need to brown your butter. By the way, brown butter is sooooo good! It tastes a little nutty. I love it! So, to brown it you'll need to cook your butter in a small saucepan. A lighter colored one is best so you can see the color of the butter change. Cook it over medium heat stirring often and watching it closely. It'll take about 6 minutes to brown. Once brown, immediately pour it into a glass measuring cup to cool slightly.

Now you need to whisk your eggs, sugar and salt in a medium bowl to blend. Add flour and vanilla and whisk until smooth. Slowly whisk in your browned butter into your egg mixture. Whisk until smooth. It should look something like this....

Did you notice the cherries in the photo above? Not enough for me, I added another cup to that. Arrange your cherries on your slightly cooled crust. Carefully pour on your browned butter mixture over your cherries. Bake for about 35-40 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool your bars before removing from pan and cutting into squares. They should look something like this (but with more cherries)....
Check out that shortbread crust and speckles of browned butter. Heaven.