October 31, 2012

Buffalo Chicken Quesadilla with Ranch Dipping Sauce (6 WW Points Plus)

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Looking for something with a little crisp, a little heat, a little cheesiness, and a sharp little bite?  Oh, and do you want it to be WW Friendly?  Well, here ya go!  For just 6 WW Points Plus you can have just that.

When I'm on my own for a meal I like to make something quick, easy, and for the most part, good for me.  The night I made this quesadilla I was craving the buffalo chicken flavor.  I had some leftover roasted chicken breast and decided to try a quesadilla.  I have not been one who would use fat free cheese without feeling like something was not right, but I found out that the Kraft Fat Free Cheddar, is not only cheesy but stringy, not at all what I expected.  I decided to give it a try when I made Hungry Girl's Denver Omelet in a mug, which by the way is very yummy!  I used only a tablespoon of blue cheese because I wanted the flavor, but not the calories.  This turned out to be a treat that I definitely enjoyed and will make again when needing something quick and easy!


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Ingredients
  • 1 Tam-x-ico's Wrap-itz Whole Wheat Wrap 100% Stoneground
  • 1 tablespoon reduced-calorie blue cheese
  • 1/4 cup fat free cheddar cheese
  • 2 teaspoons Franks Red Hot Sauce
  • 1-1/2 ounces cooked chicken breast, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon fat free ranch dressing
  • (ICBN) I can't believe it's not butter spray
Instructions
Place tortilla on hot griddle sprayed with cooking spray or ICNB spray.In a small mixing bowl, toss chicken breast slices with Frank's Red Hot Sauce.  Place 1/2 of the cheddar cheese on 1/2 of the tortilla.  Layer chicken, blue cheese and remaining cheddar on top of first lay of cheese in order listed.  Fold tortilla in half to cover cheese/chicken mixture.  Grill until toasted on bottom. Gently flip tortilla to toast other side.  Remove from griddle and cut into four triangles.  Serve with Fat Free Ranch Dressing if desired.  
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 1 Serving

October 29, 2012

The Foodie Blogroll, Swoop, and Iron Chef Marc Forgione

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Recently I had an opportunity to do what to me, was very special and exciting opportunity.  As a member of The Foodie Blog Roll I was able to join a new and upcoming program called Swoop.  Swoop is still a baby for the most part, but its "sweeping" the internet with is innovative way of advertising!  I am very happy and excited that I am a part of this program!

Just a few weeks ago I was presented with an invitation from Swoop to attend a private event hosted by them at Marc Forgione's namesake restaurant.  I was excited to receive the invitation but so very nervous to take a trip to NYC by myself.  I'm a pure country girl and only have lived the "city" life for a couple of years here in Albany - which when you look at it, isn't a very big city at all.  However, because we now do live in Albany, it was a much easier decision to actually make the trip there and back in one day.  When I told Grumpy about it, he didn't even hesitate.  His word was "GO".  So, I went!

What an experience!  I was the first guest to arrive as I went down early in order to meet up with my cousin Ryan who lives in the city.  Ryan graciously spent the afternoon with me and catered me around the city, finally depositing me off at the restaurant before he had to head off to work himself.  I love that boy, he has turned into a awesome, thoughtful, and attentive young man!

I can tell you that although I felt slightly out of place at first, it didn't take me long to be enjoying the evening.  Kurt Holloway, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Business Development greeted me when I arrived,  Kurt was my contact on this invitation and I must say that he was extremely helpful with my worrisome questions about travel into the big apple!  I also met CEO and Founder of Swoop, Ron Elwell, who had a great inviting smile and personality.
I thoroughly appreciate the opportunity the presented me with and it is one I will not soon forget!  Chef Forgione created a menu based on "Childhood Favorites" which was one like I never experienced before but definitely hope to experience again!  Favorites that I enjoyed were his version of Bagel with Cream Cheese, a mini everything bagel bite with vegetable cream cheese and gravlax - a bite of pure heaven and one I want to experience again.  His version of PB&J was a warm homemade mini english muffin with homemade nut butter, jam, served along with Foie Gras and assorted flavored salts.  The memory of that first bite and the pure enjoyment of the feel of it all in my mouth was unforgettable.  It was my first experience with Foie Gras and I can guarantee, if I can have it again like I did there, it won't be my last!  His “Baked Potato” was sour cream ravioli, leek, bacon, and white truffle.  As soon as the plate was presented  the wonderful odor wafting to my nose was one I will not forget and will likely look to experience again!  And lastly, the dessert was another very memorable treat for me.  His version of an Apple Pie where the apple was the crust, served with black pepper ice cream, whipped cream and cracker jacks.  Just a few bites were enough to satisfy and put a perfect end to the food experience of the evening.

At the end of our meal, I noticed Chef Forgione standing in the doorway of his kitchen.  I decided I could not let the experience go past me without introducing myself and thanking him for the wonderful meal experience I had just completed.  Chef Forgione is a wonderful young man with a beautiful smile and humble presence.  I was totally impressed with his attentiveness when talking to him and all I can say is he must make his momma proud.  Now, when watching him on The Iron Chef, I can't help but feel my heart swell knowing that a great person he is.  Just the perfect end to a wonderful evening of great company, food, and an experience to not soon forget.  Thank you Swoop Team!

October 28, 2012

Gooey Pumpkin Chip Bars (3 WW Plus Points)

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The original recipe, Gooey Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Bars, found on allrecipes.com, was one of the recipes we could make, photograph and review this month as part of the Allrecipes Allstar Ambassador Program.  Karo, one of our products to use this month, is the provider of the recipe on AR.  I had completed my activities, but of course, just because my month activities were complete, it did not mean I wouldn't be cooking or baking anymore this month!
Yesterday, while Grumpy was in the woods, stealthily seeking big game to target with his bow and arrow, I was home with a headache of all headaches.  I spent a good amount of time on the loveseat with Lifetime Television.  When I knew it was time to have to start making dinner I went to AR and happened across the bar recipe and thought, this would be yummy as pumpkin.  While I may have followed suit and made the bar as presented, I was out of coconut and didn't want to make it as written and not have the coconut.  So, I got rid of the peanut butter and coconut and in came my canned pumpkin.  Twas not a mistake my friends.  These are some pretty tasty bars and I will probably make them again!  I used the 13x9 pan as the recipe suggested, but next time I will go with a 9x11 as I felt the bars were way too thin and could have used a bit more height to them.

If you're not pumpkined out, then try these for sure.  If you are, then why don't you go with the original?



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Gooey Pumpkin Chip Bars
Ingredients
  • Crust:
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup Argo corn starch
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • Filling:
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup Karo Light Corn Syrup
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet mini chocolate chips
Instructions
Combine flour, sugar and corn starch in a medium size bowl. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Press into a greased 9 x 11-inch pan.

Bake in a preheated 350 degrees F oven for 15 to 18 minutes or until crust is lightly browned.

Beat eggs, corn syrup, sugar, pumpkin, vanilla and salt in a medium mixing bowl. Stir in chocolate chips. Pour over crust. Return to oven.

Bake an additional 20 to 25 minutes, or until mixture is golden. Cool on wire rack and cut into bars.

Details
Prep time: 15 minutes Cook time: 43 minutes  Total time: 58 minutes  Yield: 24 bars
WW Plus Points:  3

October 27, 2012

Baked Mini Pumpkin Doughnuts - 2 WW Points Plus

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When I was on blogger the other night I noticed that my friend Lisa of Jersey Girl Cooks had blogged about the pumpkin doughnut recipe she found on King Arthur Flour website.  Most foodies are in a pumpkin mood at this time of year, yours truly certainly not excluded!

The next morning I was up early and happened to go on Facebook only to see Lisa's doughnuts in my face again.  Instead of staying on the couch, I decided to get up and make these doughnuts.  I figured if Grumpy was heading to the office, he could take the treats to work with him.  However, as fate would have it, Grumpy wasn't headed to the office that morning, so he got a few for his lunch box and the rest made it to work with me.  If you have read my blog since the beginning, then you know that when I started out blogging, I was no stranger to getting up early and baking muffins, cupcakes, cookies, whatever I was in the mood to make and take to work to share.  Since I have been getting better sleep lately (a good 8 hours for the most part, and yes that means I'm to bed early like the old woman that I am), I have felt more like my old self.

I made some mini, some regular sized, some cinnamon sugar frosted, and some chocolate frosted.  The weight watcher data here is for the cinnamon coated only.  I honestly can't give you data for the chocolate frosted because I didn't measure anything when making the chocolate frosting.
I have to admit, that I do believe this is the best baked doughnut recipe I have made so far, and I have made a few!  Of course, it could also be because I'm quite partial to pumpkin, but Grumpy's response was that they were the best baked ones also.  When he realized what I was making was baked doughnuts, he at first turned his nose up at them.  However, I still gave him some for his lunch box and when I asked him later that night, he said the were good, "probably the best baked ones to date".  Ok, you can't expect more from Grumpy, remember now, he's picky.  I will give him credit for being more adventurous than he used to be, but he's still pretty plain when it comes to food.  If you ask me how these were, I'd say they were pretty freaking yummy.  :o)

Please read the recipe to the end if you are looking for the WW Points Plus information!  Note that the original recipe calls for 1-1/2 cups of sugar.  I felt it wouldn't need that much, especially if I was frosting and sugar coating some.  I reduced the amount to 1 cup.



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Baked Pumpkin Doughnuts
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1-1/2 cups pumpkin puree
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1-1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Instructions
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly spray doughnut pans with cooking spray.  If you don’t have doughnut pans, you can bake these in a standard or mini muffin tin.Beat together the oil, eggs, sugar, pumpkin, spices, salt, and baking powder until smooth.  Add the flour, stirring just until smooth.Fill the wells of the doughnut pans about ¾ full; I use a piping bag to pipe the batter into the doughnut pan.  Bake the doughnuts for 15 to 18 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of one comes out clean.WW Points Plus:  1 mini doughnut = 2 points

I recommend this is the way to go if you are following WW program.  If you are not, feel free to make the larger doughnuts and frost them.  With my calculations, just 1 regular sized doughnut would be 7 points.
Suggested Servings with points:1 cup coffee with fat free half and half and 1 large cinnamon sugar coated doughnut, 1 serving fruit = 7 points

Snack:  2 mini doughnuts and 1 cup almond milk = 5 points
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 48 mini or 12 regular size

Check out these other Baked Doughnut Recipes:
Sandra, The Foodie Affair:  Baked Mini Donuts
Renee, Renee's Kitchen Adventure:  "Cake Donut" Mini Muffin
Marion, Our Life Tastes Good:  Mini Apple Donut Skewers with Salted Caramel Dipping Sauce
Me :)  Baked Banana Donuts with Coconut Almond Glaze

October 22, 2012

Fall Food and Fun, an allrecipes.com party!

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I am not a stranger to Halloween Parties. There is nothing I would have loved more this year than to have planned another one. After all, the Grown Up Halloween Party I threw with my Daughter-in-Law a few years ago was a total blast, from planning and making the food to having the party itself. Since we moved to a new area and really don't have a home big enough to entertain even just a few without it being super crowded, I didn't feel that I had the resources to go ahead and plan one this year. Maybe next year we will be in our own home again and I can throw one, but for this year, I thought I would share with you some great treats that you could share at your own party should you happen to be planning one yourself!
For some great appetizers, you could start with some Mini Butternut Squash Tartlets with Caramelized Onions and Crispy Sage.  This recipe is one I took their idea and made my own from one of Pillsbury's recipes here on AR for Onion Cheese Custard Tarts.  I ditched the egg and caramelized the onions.  I then instead of eggs, mixed in roasted pieces of butternut squash, havarti cheese cubes and fried sage.  Baked as a tiny tart and it is now a favorite of Grumpy and me!
Some other great starters made with the Pillsbury Crescents would be these Spicy BBQ Chicken Crescents.  So easy to put together and a yummy treat!  I added a little kick to my crescents by using half barbeque sauce and half franks red hot sauce.
Toss a little fun into your party with some Crescent Dogs or as we did, Mummy Toes!  Same concept as the dogs, just use cocktail wieners and a slivered almond to create the toenail.  Everyone will have fun eating these!
One thing I love about parties is you can offer the small plates.  A seemingly indulgent treat can be portioned out as just a few bites and your guests won't feel deprived because they have several other small plates to choose from!  That makes this Chipotle Macaroni and Cheese the perfect addition, and I boosted it up a little more by adding some lobster to my recipe and created some Chipotle Lobster Mac & Cheese bites!
What's a party without out a little pizza?  This One Dish Quick and Easy Pepperoni Pizza makes throwing it together a cinch.  You mix the dough right in the deep dish pie plate, add your toppings and bake.  Can't get much easier than that, and its yummy!
These Parmesan Garlic Rolls are a sure hit also. After all, when you go to the pizza shop, how many places don't offer a version of a garlicky, cheesy, bread?  These are a must have and another quick and easy addition to your menu!
For some sweet treats, make sure you offer up a taste of fall with these easy to make Pumpkin Braids. Guests will love the nutty pumpkin filling with the irresistable glaze!

These apple cider glazed doughnuts will have everyone thinking fall.  The light and fluffy doughnut with the apple cider glaze are absolutely irresistible.  Its hard to just eat one of these!
Finally, send your guest home stuffed and happy and with a little caramel corn treat bag and some Pumpkin Spice Bon Bons!  
The bonbons were made using the Harvest Pumpkin Cupcake recipe - just baked as a cake and crumbled and mixed with about half of the frosting, shaped into balls and dipped in chocolate with fall decorations! They will go home remembering all the yummy food you served with a little taste for the next day!


Disclaimer

I am an Allrecipes Allstar Brand Ambassador (a voluntary position) and I’m not compensated for my work with Allrecipes.com.


Products received from advertiser are only used for experienced-based reviews on The Life and Loves of Grumpy's Honeybunch name. The reviews, content and opinions expressed in this blog are solely my own.

October 21, 2012

Apple Cider Glazed and Maple Frosted Doughnuts

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Naked doughnuts.   That's what these are!  But the funny thing about a naked doughnut is it's not naughty until you actually cover it with a little sugar, so of course, that is exactly what I did!

I reduced some fresh apple cider down to about half it's volume, stirred in a little karo syrup and powdered sugar and started dunking them deep in that bowl of sinful goodness and coated them with that warm fall flavor.

October 19, 2012

1 Dish Pepperoni Pizza (7 WW Points Plus)

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Here is another quick, easy, and yummy meal for you all (with Weight Watcher's Points Plus included!).  This is a Fleischman's recipe that is on allrecipes.com.  While we love to have pizza, i don't always love the time it takes to make it or even the time it takes to order and have it delivered....and I certainly don't feel like going out to pick it up.  Yup.  I'm lazy like that sometimes.

When you read this recipe, you might think there is a mistake when you read it since it calls for two packages of yeast.  I'm not sure if it was a misprint or not but I decided to use it since it was not your normal pizza dough.  I was worried it might cause the pizza to taste yeasty but fears were set aside and I bit the bullet and just did it.  No yeasty taste evolved and the pizza rose up nice and high causing this pie to become a definite deep dish!
This is very versatile and you could make this several different flavors - and even flavor the crust!  This was about as adventurous as Grumpy allowed me to get with the pizza.  While I would have loved to to went with BBQ or Buffalo Chicken, I had to stick to pepperoni.  At least he let me toss some olives and spicy pickled peppers on top.  :)


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1-Dish Pepperoni Pizza (Deep Dish) 7 WW Points Plus
Ingredients
  • 1-3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 packages Fleischman's Rapid Rise Yeast
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup very warm water
  • topping:
  • 1/2 cup pizza sauce
  • 1-1/2 cups part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 2 oz pepperoni
  • 2 tablespoons black olives, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons slivered spiced pickled peppers
Instructions
Mix batter ingredients in a pre-sprayed 9-1/2-inch deep dish pie plate. Spread pizza sauce evenly over batter.
Top dough with pepperoni slices.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Top with olives and medium hot pepper slices.

Bake by placing in a cold oven; set temperature to 350 degrees F. Bake for 30 minutes or until done.
Details
Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 30 minutes Total time: 40 minutes Yield: 6 servings

October 16, 2012

Spicy BBQ Chicken Crescents (Weight Watcher Points Plus = 4)

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On work nights, sometimes quick and easy is the only way to go.  With our busy lives, we can be eating dinner as late as 7 pm so making a homemade meal can be very challenging during the week.  In comes Pillsbury Crescent Rolls to the rescue.
All you need is some cooked shredded chicken, bbq sauce, frank's red hot, colby cheese and crescent rolls.  I had a couple of chicken breasts I had already cooked so I shredded 1 of them and that equaled about 1 cup.  You could always use the ever convenient rotisserie chicken if you want to save yourself cooking the chicken ahead of time.

These worked out pretty well for me and would be a great item to feed guests at a party - kids and adults alike!

This recipe is adapted from Pillsbury's BBQ Chicken Crescents found on allrecipes.com.

I have worked out the Weight Watcher's Points Plus using their Recipe Builder and these are 4 WW Points per crescent.  Enjoy!


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BBQ Chicken Crescents
Quick and Easy Weeknight Dinner that is Delicious!
Ingredients
  • 1-8oz can Pillsbury Crescent Dough Roll (reduced fat)
  • 1 cup cooked chicken, shredded
  • 2 Tablespoons Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ Sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons Frank's Red Hot Sauce
  • 4 ounces reduced fat colby cheese, shredded
  • 1   egg, whisked until foamy
Instructions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.Unwrap crescent roll dough and separate into 8 triangle pieces. Divide chicken mixture evenly over top of dough.  Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of cheese.  Starting at wide end of triangle, roll up loosely as directed on can.  Brush with egg and sprinkle on remaining cheese.Bake 12-15 minutes or until golden brown.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 8 crescents

October 14, 2012

Pumpkin Danish Braid with Maple Drizzle and Walnut Topping (6 WW Points Plus)

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Makes 6 servings - 6 WW Points per serving!
Saturday morning we woke up to our first frost and it was BRR!  Grumpy was up early because he intended to go out bow hunting.  I was going to try to sleep and stayed in bed at first, but it was no good.  I was awake and nothing I could do about it.  I got out of bed and made my cup of coffee and sat in the living room while Grumpy commented that he really didn't want to go out.  At first I thought it was because he didn't want to go in the cold and when I said something he reminded me that it was because he didn't like to go out alone.

October 13, 2012

David C. Whitton - Citizen of the Year

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and MY Uncle :-)  You can't tell I am proud can you?

You can read about this honor bestowed upon my uncle here, but let me tell you some things that the paper can't tell you.

Uncle David is my Nanny's baby boy.  I am Nanny's first grandbaby.  I have been told stories about how my Uncle David absolutely loved me when I was born.  Well who wouldn't?  Love a baby that is. ;)  However, even though when I got older, he had his fun teasing me, when I was a teen and away at a boarding school he would type me letters from his work typewriter to send off to me.  When I think about it now, that really tells me just how much he loved me.  Then when he found out I was going to have surgery to replace 2 disc in my neck, he called me, so concerned and worried about whether I was doing the right thing and that had me in tears knowing his concern.  There is no doubt in my mind.  My Uncle David loves me.  And I love my Uncle David.  He is a kind hearted man who never wants to do anything but help someone in need.  He also is a fun guy who loves to tease and laugh and joke.  While I can't be home to celebrate this honor with our family and friends, I can certainly let everyone in the internet world know about him and share  his honor with you!

I love you Uncle David.  My heart overflows when I think of you and how much you care.  I will never, ever forget.  Congratulations on your success!!!  XOXOXO  Shelby Mae Lou Law :) aka Sister Sue (don't know where that came from) and Bontonelle (a nickname bestowed upon me by my uncles because I reminded them of my dad's youngest sister Bonnie).  

Do you do the DEW?

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While I am not a huge soda drinker, Mountain Dew is one of my choices when picking one, and it has been the choice of Grumpy and my children also.  Grumpy's best bub he worked with prior to our move was a Dew Dude too and we actually bought him the Dew for his birthday one year (a good supply of it I might add!).
Dale Jr's Diet Dew
I am posting this today to make you aware of where you can join the "Dew Crew" and interact with Dale Ernhardt Jr!  There are quizzes, trivia, video's etc that you can have fun with just by visiting the Dew Crew!

Content and/or other value provided by our partner, Mountain Dew.  The Life and Love's of Grumpy's Honeybunch was compensated for this post, but all views and opinions are her own.

October 12, 2012

Pumpkin Chip Muffins (WW Points included)

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Yummy, moist, full of pumpkin flavor with a hit of semi - sweet chocolate.  Perfect fall breakfast.

I found the recipe for Pumpkin Muffins II on allrecipes.com and adapted it to fit the Weight Watcher's Points Plus Plan.  You can eat two of these for breakfast, or one for a snack later in the day, and it doesn't hurt your points bank!

October 09, 2012

B-Leve Shampoo, Conditioner and Body Wash!

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I know, a strange post for me right?  I don't normally talk about products, but Price Chopper contacted me and wanted me to try their new product B-leve.  I was sent 3 coupons for myself - 1 for shampoo, 1 for conditioner, and 1 for body wash so I could try the product

I'm all for trying hair care products - and I'm always looking for a product specifically for color treated hair.  Yeah, this "ain't" my natural hair color.  :-)  The scent of the shampoos, conditioner, and body wash is very pleasant and mild.  I've been using the product for about a week now and have no complaints.  I would definitely buy this product again for myself.  They have several different types of shampoo/conditioner/body wash to meet what your need may be.

Price Chopper Shoppers could also try these products free as I was also provided with 3 of the same coupons for you to try the product free also!  Please remember these coupon's are only good for you to use at Price Chopper.

To enter the giveaway, just leave a comment here about what you like in a shampoo/conditioner!

Bonus Entries- leave an extra comment for each

Like Price Chopper on Facebook

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Like Grumpy's Honeybunch on Facebook

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Tweet the following: "I entered the @Price Chopper B-leve giveaway via @GrumpysHoneyB you can too! http://tinyurl.com/8sxe8cf"

Hurry - giveaway ends at 7 PM EST on Thursday, October 11, 2012.

Pumpkin Cookies with Rum Flavored Icing

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Pumpkin.  Its a term of endearment my mom and dad call each other.  They didn't start using that term until I was a teen and about out of high school.  I specifically remember it when we were on the farm and they would be out in the barn milking cows.  I also remember catching them smooching out there when they thought nobody was looking!  Then my mom giggling like a little girl when they got caught.  Us kids were always afraid to go to the barn after that.  ;-)  My parents have definitely been the definition of what true love is to their children - and it has lasted for over 50 years with them.
Pumpkin.  Its also a word that brings warmth and comfort to a soul.  Its the definition of fall and what's to come.  From cereal, bread, coffeecake and muffins, to cheesecakecookies, candy and even cinnamon buns, most everyone feels the warmth and love when they hear the word Pumpkin.  Must be why its a term of endearment for my parents.
Pumpkin.  Its whats in these cookies that I made for my little boy (well, not so little, but to me will always be) who is now living over 1000 miles away from me.  Made with more love than you can imagine, so they are going to be the best cookies he has ever eaten.  Until his mom makes him some more.  :-)  He will feel the warmth and love with each bite and feel comforted knowing his mom loves him so much that she took the time to make him Pumpkin Cookies along with several other treats and shipped them off to him so he could have a part of me.

Pumpkin.  I have even called my children that nickname learned from my parents, and they both know what it means.  <3 br="br" nbsp="nbsp">
Note:  This recipe was adapted from one I have made for several years now from allrecipes.com.  I reduced the sugar and changed the icing to suit our tastes.  This is a definite 5 star cookie!




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Pumpkin Cookies with Rum Flavored Icing

Ingredients
  • 2-1.2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extractIcing:
  • 1-1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon rum flavored extract
  • 4-5 tablespoons fat free half and half
Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and salt; set aside.

In a medium bowl, cream together the 1/2 cup of butter and white sugar. Add pumpkin, egg, and 1 teaspoon vanilla to butter mixture, and beat until creamy. Stir in dry ingredients.

Drop on cookie sheet by tablespoonfuls; flatten slightly. *tip: I flattened by using the back of a tablespoon that I had dipped slightly in water to prevent sticking.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven. Cool cookies, then frost with icing. If you use more half and half you can just drizzle the icing. I wanted to frost and decorate with fall sprinkles!

To Make icing: Combine confectioners' sugar, milk, melted butter, and rum extract. Add milk as needed, to achieve drizzling consistency.

Note, I used my small cookie scoop and got just under 3 dozen. If you make these any larger, you will not get as many cookies as the recipe states it yields.

Details
Prep time: Cook time: 20 minutes Total time: Yield: 3 dozen

October 08, 2012

Tomato Butter

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Today is the Secret Recipe Club reveal day!  This month I was honored to receive Evelyne's blog, Cheap Ethnic Eats.  Evelyne had my blog a while back and she made my Nanny's Brown Sugar Fudge!  I'm glad to be able have her blog finally so I can return the favor and tell you what I found on her blog :-)

I did a lot of browsing.  The first thing I came across that I knew I would make would be the tomato butter that you see posted here today.  I think of this as more of a jam and I loved it on my morning toast.  Mom and Dad had treated us to so many goodies on their visit, and fresh garden tomatoes were some of them - so I had some great produce for my recipe!
There are a couple of things I want to share with you (and of course Evelyne!) in relation to Cheap Ethnic Eats and herself.  First of all, she lives not too far away from where I lived all my life until a couple of years ago.  I lived right near the Canadian border for about 45 years!  Grumpy and I went to Montreal when we were first together and I had the Lasik surgery there and years before that I remember going on a camping trip up that way and took the boys to see the Colorado Rockies pay the Montreal Expos.  Sorry, Evelyne, they were both Rockies fans.

Evelyne also talks about something on her blog that I grew up with.  She has a post that she does called Thursday's Thingamijig.  This particular post talked about food in cans and how they don't belong there.  I couldn't help but smile when I saw the Worthington Fri-Chik.  Because I grew up with a vegetarian Mom, the Fri-Chik was a stable in our home.  LOL.  Seriously, that stuff is good, but you can't expect it to taste like real chicken.  That would just be wrong.  ;)  The real chicken in a can though, well, yeah.  That one does gross me out.  I don't have much of a problem with vegetarian soy protein in a can though.  Another food that is in a can that is from Worthington is the Big Franks (hot dogs).  LOVE THOSE THINGS!

Thanks for the walk down memory lane Evelyne.  I had a lot of fun browsing through your blog!  I hope you enjoy my rendition of the Tomato Butter!

At the end of this post, please check out the links to the other Secret Recipe Club reveals for this month!


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Tomato Butter
Ingredients
  • 3 large Tomatoes, diced
  • 1/4 cup sugar
Instructions
Place tomatoes in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until tomatoes have completely broken down and are soft and have reduced and thickened to a jam consistency.  Evelyne chose to not strain her tomatoes and I did the same, however you can strain the skin and seeds if you prefer.

Details
Prep time:  :10 minutes
Cook time: :20 minutes
Total time: :30 minutes
Yield: 1 cup




October 07, 2012

Candy Corn Fudge

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I am guilty of making a lot of sweets lately.  Between birthdays and making goodies to send off to the kids, I've gone through a lot of sugar in the last month!  I also have decided that since I have made fudge 3 times in the last month now, and each time it has turned out wonderfully, I am now going to proclaim that I am no longer a failure at candy making.  For now anyway.  Or at least until I do fail (cause that is sure to happen when cooking sugar).
The Pumpkin Spice Fudge that I made took a trip back home to my son Justin.  This Candy Corn Fudge is making it's way to North Carolina tomorrow along with some other goodies in the box for my other son Christopher.  Of course, I sent goodies home for Kristina also when I sent Justin his fudge, so, likewise, when shipping these treats off I am sending off enough for Chris to share with his roommates.
I am having so much fun with the Allrecipes Allstar Program.  I love being challenged and this is definitely challenging me!  I'm also enjoying making the goodies that are not staying in my home.  I'm loving taking the photos too!  As a part of this program this month, one of the things we are doing is making and reviewing recipes that contain Karo Syrup.  My only situation with this recipe, is I'm not sure if it counts as part of my activity as I can't find this particular one on allrecipes.com.  I did however find it on the Karo website.  It is a recipe for White Fudge and I added salted peanuts and candy corn to it to give it more of a Halloween theme and to make it pretty.  :-)
I am also learning a lot of patience with all this fudge making.  I am finding that to make a good cooked fudge, I definitely need the candy thermometer, and I need to know exactly what it looks like when it states in the recipe "the fudge starts to loose it's gloss".  If you attempt to pour the fudge after it has lost its gloss too late....then your fudge will harden before it hits the pan.  If you don't beat it long enough and pour it before it begins to loose its gloss, you will end up with gooey fudge.


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Candy Corn Fudge
Vanilla flavored fudge with peanuts and candy corn mixed in!

Ingredients
  • 2-1/2 cups Sugar
  • 1-1/4 cups fat free half and half
  • 1/3 cup Karo corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup salted peanuts
  • 1/3 cup candy corn
Instructions
Line an 8x8 pan with foil and spray with cooking spray.  Set aside.Combine sugar, fat free half and half, corn syrup, and salt in a heavy 3-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently until mixture boils.

Continue cooking, stirring occasionally until candy thermometer reaches 235 to 240°F (soft ball stage). Remove from heat; do not remove candy thermometer. **NOTE:  I let my candy cook to the 240 temp - otherwise I end up with runny fudge.

Add vanilla and butter and stir until incorporated.  Cool mixture to 100°F.  To speed cooling, place pan of hot fudge mixture in a cold water bath -I just remain patient myself because I don't want to take any chances of getting water in my syrup.  Remove candy thermometer.

Beat mixture with a wooden spoon until it thickens and begins to lose its gloss (about 4 to 5 minutes). Stir in peanuts.
Pour fudge mixture into prepared pan and quickly place candy corn on top, pressing slightly to sink corn into the fudge a little. Cool completely. When firm, remove from pan; cut into squares.

Details
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Yield: 36 pieces

October 06, 2012

Butternut Squash Tarts with Caramelized Onions and Crispy Sage

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Butternut Squash Tarts with Caramelized Onions & Crispy Fried Sage #fall #butternut #sage
Isn't it funny how when we hit certain seasons our mind starts to revolve around foods that fit into those seasons?  To me fall is not only indicate of pumpkins and apples.  It also means winter squash such as butternut.  Butternut squash is my very favorite winter squash.  When mom and dad were here a few weeks ago, they brought me a couple from their garden.

Earlier this week I was looking through the Pillsbury Crescent Recipes on allrecipes.com.  I found a recipe for Onion-Cheese Custard Tartlets.  Well, I had the onion and cheese part, but we all know how I feel about eggs for the most part.  I was craving a little buttery, sweet, heat topped with a little savory so I decided what better way to utilize these tarts than some of my butternut squash!  I kept the onions and cheese and made a few other additions to get the flavors I was craving and came up with these Butternut Squash Tarts.  These are absolutely delicious!  Grumpy and I both loved them.  We even had the leftovers the next evening for our dinner and just reheated in the microwave they were still yummy.
I am an Allrecipes Allstar Brand Ambassador (a voluntary position) and I’m not compensated for my work with Allrecipes.com. Products received from advertiser are only used for experienced-based reviews on The Life and Loves of Grumpy's Honeybunch. The reviews, content and opinions expressed in this blog are solely my own.




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Butternut Squash Tarts with Caramelized Onions and Crispy Sage
A slightly sweet heat with the creaminess of Havarti, and comfort of caramelized onions and texture pleasure of the crispy sage!
Ingredients
  • 1 (8 ounce) can Pillsbury® refrigerated crescent dinner rolls or Pillsbury® Crescent Recipe Creations™ refrigerated flaky dough sheet
  • 4 cups butternut squash, cubed into bite sized pieces
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon (or to taste) cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup havarti cheese, cut in small cubes (or monetery jack works well too)
  • 9 fresh sage leaves
  • 1/2 large onion, sliced thin
  • 2 tablespoons butter
Instructions
Heat oven to 375 degrees F.  Mix squash, olive oil, salt, cayenne, and brown sugar and place in roasting pan. Place in oven and roast until pieces are tender. About 30 minutes.

While squash is cooking, prep onions by placing 1 tablespoon butter in medium hot skillet and cooking until browned. This took me about 20 minutes. Remove onions from pan, wipe out any moisture and place remaining tablespoon butter in pan. Cook until it starts to bubble, then add fresh sage and fry until sage becomes darker and butter is browned. Remove sage from pan and set aside on paper towel.

If using crescent rolls: Unroll dough into 1 large rectangle on work surface. Press into 12x9-inch rectangle, firmly pressing perforations to seal. If using dough sheet: Unroll dough on work surface. Press into 12x9-inch rectangle.

Cut dough into 6 squares. Gently press squares into 6 ungreased muffin cups, shaping edges to form rims 1/4 inch high.

Mix cooked squash (will still be hot) with 3 pieces of sage (crumble the sage into the squash), and havarti cheese. Scoop squash into muffin cups. Top with caramelized onions.

Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Cool 5 minutes. Remove from muffin cups and garnish with fried sage leaf.
DetailsPrep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes (squash and tarts)
Total time:  1 hour
Yield: 6 Tarts
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