July 17, 2014

Popcorn & Peanuts Challenge

It’s July when thoughts turn to baseball and two of baseball’s favorite foods: peanuts & popcorn. Kristen from Frugal Antics has challenged us to combine the two into one dish.ejpeanutspopcornFor this challenge I used air-popped popcorn & freshly shelled peanuts along with chunky peanut butter…ejpeanutspopcornSo, ummmmm, I don’t know if it’s the 106° or our elevated “monsoonal” humidity… but I’m afraid my #gf classification today stands for “gooey fail!” Don’t get me wrong -- they are quite delicious; but, alas, are just a little messy.

Mr. Pitt eats Snickers®

No problem ~ I just ate the bars with a fork & knife!ejpeanutspopcornHere’s my recipe:ejpeanutspopcornrecipeThe popcorn flour is easy -- just give it a short ride in the food processor & you’ll be all set. ejpeanutspopcornThe flour is unbelievable light. (So please, if you’re substituting any other kind of flour, do not use 4 cups!)

I thought of making the nougat & caramel “from scratch”; but upon considering the amount of time that would confine me to a hot kitchen, I opted for the much simpler mini marshmallow & Kraft® caramel  “cheat”…

When I realized the bottom crust was not going to hold up under the pressure, I decided to coat it with melted chocolate to try to keep it together.ejpeanutspopcornThe bad news was that it wasn’t very effective. But the good news was now it had CHOCOLATE. But the bad news was that it made it a little too sweet & took away from the popcorn flavor…ejpeanutspopcornNext time I attempt this I will 1) use a “binder” with the popcorn flour, and 2) use caramel corn to keep that popcorn layer a little more crisp. (That was a complaint I heard from my “testers” -- aside from it falling apart in their hands…)

If you’re looking for more peanut & popcorn recipes, I recommend you check out the links below: 

June 19, 2014

Roasted Raspberry Chipotlé Sauce Stuffed Jalapeños

It’s that Improv time of the month, again! Kristen challenged us to use berries and cream in creative ways. I so wished to make yet another gluten-free dessert, but that would’ve probably been too self-serving… Winking smile

Fischer & WieserAbout ten years ago our family encountered this incredible sauce at a tasting booth in Costco. We immediately bought it & used it on everything we grilled! raspIt soon became our favorite appetizer iconically poured over a block of cream cheese & served with crackers. And this combo, dear friends, became my inspiration for today’s challenge.ejroastedraspI made the sauce a day prior to using it in my jalapeño peppers. ejroastedraspsPretty sure my tummy was growling the entire time it was roasting in the oven! ejroastraspovenThe remaining ingredients ejroastedrasp (14)were stirred in. ejroastedrasp (17)It was given time to cool downejroastedrasp (18) and then it thickened quite nicely in the fridge.ejroastedrasp (27)ejroastrasprecipe

The hubs got a lovely jalapeño roaster for Father’s Day, but it didn’t quite fit the bill…ejjalapopsI had the brilliant idea to use my corn stick pans, and those peppers seemed to be quite happy to be roasting there!ejroastjala

The ingredients for the filling stirred together quickly. ejalafill(Since the jalapeños wouldn’t be left whole for roasting, I used a spoon instead of pastry bag to fill…)ejalafilledI read somewhere that any filled jalapeño is a “popper” whether you bread it, fry it, roast or grill it.ejroastedrasp (46)

These made for a delicious dinner -- especially when wrapped in a warm corn tortilla.ejroastedrasp (56)

ejpopperecipePlease check these berries and cream recipes from my friends: