0 Caramel Corn Puffs

I'm in trouble.

Deep trouble.

Again, like the Vanilla Texas Sheet Cake, I was introduced to this crispy, caramel-ly, melt-in-your-mouth puff goodness at a church gathering. It is like the best, caramel corn, EVER.
You don't have to pop the corn and you don't get popcorn hulls stuck in your gums...No seeds, no hulls!

It only took a quick search around the room to find the lady that so generously brought this addictive sweet snack and ask her for the recipe.

"Well, it's on the bag," she said.

What bag? I ask.

"Ummmm, the bag of corn puffs that I bought at Harmons grocery store."

The very next day, I went to Harmons and found the bag of corn puffs and immediately made this recipe...

Sure enough, the recipe is on the back!  Here we go ...

Butter and light corn syrup.  The base of most candy recipes...

Light brown sugar ...

are mixed and cooked for two minutes or till bubbly around the edges.  The pan is removed from the heat and baking soda is added. This lightens the color of the mixture, foams, and allows the coating to stick to the corn puffs.

The caramel-ly goodness is poured evenly over the puffs ...

mixed, and placed into a low oven, stirring every 10 minutes for 45 minutes.

Yes, you need to stir every 10 minutes or you will have a large blob of caramel corn.

Don't worry, it's SO worth every crispy, buttery, caramel-y, sweet bite!

You can find these corn puffs at:
Harmons Grocery

Print Friendly and PDF
Caramel Corn Puffs
from Barrel O' FunIngredients
1 (8oz) bag of Corn Pops (Barrel O’Fun)
½ c. butter or margarine
½ c. light corn syrup
1 c. light brown sugar
1 t. baking soda
Place corn pops in a large mixing bowl. In a medium saucepan, mix together butter, corn syrup & sugar and melt over medium high heat until bubbly around the edges. 
Remove from heat.

Add baking soda and mix. Pour over corn pops and mix gently.
Spread coated corn pops evenly onto a parchment or Silpat lined baking sheet and put into a preheated 250ยบ F oven for 45 minutes,
stirring every 10 minutes for even baking.  Remove from oven and break apart before the pops cool. 


0 Gingerbread Men

Just like sugar cookies, there are two camps: crispy or soft.  One group loves the crispy, buttery sugar cookies or the crispy, chewy gingersnaps. The other group loves soft, light sugar cookies or gingerbread cookies.

These cookies are made with butter, which give it a soft texture.  They have the perfect blend of spices, which remind me of the holidays.

With this great tip for rolling out 1/4" thick cookies every time, making these gingerbread men are a breeze.

I found this cookie cutter at Joann's Craft store for only .99 cents. 

These cookies need very little decorating.  You want their flavor to shine through.  Check out this great frosting trick that saves waste and clean up! (works great for filling Deviled Eggs, too!)


This is the Dracula we decorated for Halloween.  I'm sure you can come up with your own decorating ideas for the holidays!


Print Friendly and PDF
Soft Gingerbread Cookies
½ c. butter
½ c. sugar
1 egg
½ c. molasses
2 ¼ c. sifted all purpose flour
½ t. salt
½ t. baking powder
1 t. ginger
1 ½ t. cinnamon
½ t. cloves
½ t. nutmeg

Cream butter and sugar, then blend in egg and molasses.  Sift together dry ingredients and add.  
Chill dough 2 hours.  
Roll out 1/3 inch thick on lightly floured board.  Cut with cookie cutter or use sharp knife to cut around cardboard patterns.  
Bake on lightly greased cookie sheet 10 to 12 minutes at 350 degrees.  Makes 15 large cookies.  If rolled thinner, decrease cooking time.

Makes 20 – 3.5” cookies 


0 Carton Smart!

This post brought to you by Carton Smart. All opinions are 100% mine.
I love square containers. They stack well and nest easily and don't suck up wasted space like round containers.  Square cartons are easy to ship, stack, and store! Ever tried to get cranberry jelly out of a can? This box makes it much easier!
 photo 62adf36b-e1dc-4d93-98c1-aa80d97a468d_zps600d562e.jpg
These new Smart cartons are much lighter than the heavy metal cans and have no need for can openers.  They are made of 70% recyclable paper, from selectively harvested, re-grown trees. Very smart.  Easy to open. Easy to pour. Reclosable. (Is that a new word?) I use what I need and save the rest for later.
 I love the space saving design that makes storing in my pantry and fridge more user friendly.
 photo d1d52bb8-c150-4f19-9a7c-b8c9ab3c8df3_zpsac6b75dd.jpg
The ingredients?  No weird, unpronouncable stuff here ~ Chicken stock is simply "water, chicken, carrots, celery and onions."  Jellied Cranberry sauce is simply "organic cranberries, organic cane sugar, & water."  The pumpkin puree?  "100% Organic Pumpkin."  100% organic, non-gmo and no preservatives!  Simple.  The way nature intended.
With the holidays, using these smart cartons make everyday baking so much easier! Here's to eating a luscious pumpkin pie...
I use chicken broth for many things.  I love that this chicken stock is unsalted (not salt free) and allows me to season my dishes just the way I want. I use chicken broth for gravy, sauces, red enchilada sauce, soups and to flavor my rice.  The uses are endless.
 photo 795e421d-1ec8-414e-b1b8-dde8f5f23ded_zps62983f0a.jpg
And it starts with a smart carton.
Be #cartonsmart this holiday season with recipes that use ingredients that taste great with little waste!

Become Carton Smart
Tweet @CartonSmart
Follow #CartonSmart on Pinterest
 photo 1898ca76-3272-4baf-a8df-07abf60e15e3_zps1bf425e9.jpg
Visit Sponsor's Site


0 Christmas Sugar Cookies!

It has been a family tradition for many years to make our favorite Soft Sugar Cookie recipe every year.  It is so fun to listen to Christmas music and watch the kids frost, decorate and gobble up these cookies!

I keep my shapes simple and easy to decorate and what you see in the photo above are my favorites. Over the years, I have found some TIPS that will make your sugar cookie making experience more enjoyable!

Tip for rolling PERFECTLY EVEN 1/4" cookies: 

How to make changing frosting colors, EASY, hassle free, with less waste and clean up!
(this works great for filling Deviled Eggs, too!)

See my Kitchen Tip for additional Sugar Cookie Secrets and have fun making these yummy cookies!


0 Crescent Dinner Roll Shape Secret!

After making 21 dozen dinner rolls for Thanksgiving and making 32 dozen last night for a church Christmas party, a helpful tip came to my mind that makes these rolls even prettier!

Although there are many beautiful roll shapes to choose from, I like the crescent shape as it is quick, easy to roll, and looks elegant.

I can't remember where I saw this tip, Martha Stewart or on the King Arthur baking website, but it does make a difference!

After letting your dough rest (for easier rolling!), cut into 12 wedges and make a 1/4" notch at the base of each wedge...

 Stretch out the base of the wedge and begin rolling...

 As you are rolling, hold the base with one hand and gently stretch the middle of the dough with the other hand, making it slightly longer.  This will create more "swirls" on your crescent roll...

When you are done rolling, make sure the "point" is under the roll.  Curl the tips of the roll toward the center.

See the difference?

The top roll did not have the notch.  The bottom roll had the notch.

You will also notice the bottom roll has an extra layer ... swirl ... due to stretching during the rolling process. 

Pretty, huh?

Happy Baking!


0 Sriracha Pineapple Pork Lettuce Wraps

This post brought to you by PeiWei. All opinions are 100% mine.
Pei Wei Asian Diner is owned and operated by P.F. Chang's China Bistro, which tells me that if you eat here, you will get exceptionally fresh food and high quality entrees.  Where else can you taste foods from five different countries? This is not just a Chinese restaurant; you can sample inspired cuisine from Korea, Japan, Thailand and Vietnam, all made with over 35 fresh, hand-cut ingredients.

I love the casual atmosphere of Pei Wei. You can choose to sit at a table, booth, or at the bar and watch the chefs whip up your meal.  You can customize your order to your liking; don't like peppers? Have the chef leave them out. Too spicy? Have them leave the chili oil or chiles out.  Gluten free? There is a wide variety of gluten free and vegetarian dishes available.  Online ordering and take out is also available.
When you enter the restaurant, you are greeted with three large video displays of all their creations. These displays are easy to read, colorful and make it difficult to decide....
I love their lettuce wraps and now there are four to choose from:
Sriracha Pineapple, Korean Steak, Traditional Chicken, and Thai Chicken.

Let's try the newest lettuce wrap on the menu ~ Sriracha Pineapple Pork.  Sriracha is a type of hot sauce named after the coastal city of Si Racha, in Thailand.  It is tangy, sweet, and hot, so if you can handle the heat, this dish is for you!
 photo 42b3a2a9-f6dc-4a02-be4c-b623c9aa3c22_zpse87cf835.jpg
Wok seared pork, fresh veggies, and sweet chunks of pineapple are tossed together with a kick of Sriracha sauce. This is served on a bed of rice noodles with several crisp lettuce leaves.  How do you eat lettuce wraps?  Simply grab a lettuce leaf, fill it with the meat mixture, and eat it "taco" style.
 photo e0ef35db-d861-415d-99a9-0b351e85dd7b_zpsef831452.jpg

This is a great dish by itself or served as an appetizer among friends.  Crunchy, tangy, hot and sweet, give Sriracha Pineapple Pork lettuce wraps a try!
Have you been to Pei Wei?  Leave a comment telling me what you are excited to try!

Explore the full Pei Wei Asian Diner menu
Like Pei Wei on Facebook
Follow Pei Wei on Twitter
Follow Pei Wei on Pinterest

Visit Sponsor's Site


0 Freddy's Sticky Saucy BBQ Ribs!

This post brought to you by Netflix. All opinions are 100% mine.
The holidays are the BEST times to bring family and food together!  I have a family of boys and they LOVE ribs. 
There's something manly about picking up a meaty rib, slathering it with tangy barbecue sauce, eating every morsel off the bone and licking your fingers clean....

While eating, we love to watch a favorite TV show or movie on Netflix. There are thousands of shows to choose from, and I love that many of them are favorites of mine growing up. 

You can pause, fast forward, and rewind with Netflix.  You can watch your favorite TV shows, any time, any where, all with NO commercials! I have Netflix on my phone and tablet and watched a movie in the airport while waiting for a flight.  I have Netflix on my computer in the kitchen and enjoy watching while baking and cooking in the kitchen.
As a family, we like to watch Star Trek Next Generation. We started at the very beginning and have watched every episode in order. We recently watched Men in Black, which was entertaining and fun.  On Thanksgiving, while baking, I will be catching up on White Collar and Burn Notice, which are a couple of my favorite TV crime shows. Having my favorite show on while baking in the kitchen is more enjoyable and makes the time go by faster.
Curtis Stone partnered with Netflix to recreate some favorite TV recipes and I get to share Freddy's Sticky Saucy Ribs (from "House of Cards") with you!
You can bake these ribs, but smoking ribs on a gas or charcoal grill is super easy. After rubbing the spice mixture all over the ribs and letting it marinate, it is set over a disposable pan of water and a foil packet of soaked wood chips.  I poked holes in the top of the foil packet to let the smoke come through.

Grilling low and slow over the grill produces a juicy, tender meat. This took about 2.5 hours.  During the last 30 minutes or so, the ribs are basted with homemade tangy barbecue sauce. 
The result is a smoky, saucy, fantastic rib that anyone would love to sink their teeth into... Click on the link at the end of the post to save/print this recipe.

(full page printable recipe)  
Does your family have movie/TV marathons during the holidays?  What do YOU like to watch?

Like Netflix on Facebook
Follow @Netflix
Follow Netflix on Pinterest
Visit Sponsor's Site
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Pin It button on image hover