Monday, May 26, 2014

Pancake Poppers:

I love pancakes! When I was younger, we had pancakes just about every Saturday morning, and well, we still do that I guess! Not every week, but probably at least twice a month!
During the week, things are too busy to make pancakes in the mornings, but some of us aren't huge cold cereal fans. I came across this idea, and decided to try it out. It worked great and makes for a quick and yummy breakfast! I babysit some kids that really like pancakes, and they love these!!
I let the little kids eat them warm as they are, and tear them up in pieces for the toddlers. It works great! I hope you'll give them a try too!!

4 eggs
4 cups milk
2/3 cup canola oil
1 tsp. vanilla
4 cups flour
1 tsp. xanthan gum
8 tsp. baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
Optional: Blueberries, strawberries, crumbled cooked sausage, crumbled cooked bacon pieces, chopped nuts, chocolate chips, whatever you can think of!
In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs until foamy. Add milk, oil and vanilla. Mix well. Add dry ingredients and mix until well combined.
Spray a mini-muffin tin with cooking spray. Using a cookie scoop, fill muffin cups 3/4 full. If you want to add any optional ingredients, now is the time to add them. Sprinkle over the muffin cups and press gently into the batter. Bake at 435 degrees for 12-18 minutes or until very light golden brown. Let set in the pan for 3-5 minutes. Run a table knife around the edges to loosen from the pan. Flip them out on a wire rack or even just the counter top and let them cool. Place on a baking sheet (preferably so they aren't touching too much) and freeze for 2-3 hours. Remove from the cookie sheet and place in a ziplock bag. Freeze until ready to use!!
To Re-Heat:
For about 6 poppers, microwave for 1 minute to re-heat! Dip in syrup!

-We prefer to use Rice Milk in our pancakes, but you can use whatever you like.
-You can, of course, use any pancake mix you want!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Orange Carrot Jello Salad:

My Grandma used to make this salad and I always loved it!!!
If you have never tired it or heard of it, it may sound weird having carrots in your Jello, but trust me, it's really good!!! It couldn't be any easier to make, and it's super yummy!
I couldn't find grandma's recipe in our recipe boxes anywhere, so I'm not sure if this is the exact recipe she used, but it tastes identical to me and reminds me so much of her, with every bite I take!
I hope you'll give it a try!!
2 (3 oz.) packages Orange Gelatin
2 cups boiling water
1 (20 oz.) can Crushed Pineapple
2 tblsp. lemon juice
Cold Water
1/4 tsp. salt, optional
1 & 1/2 cups finely shredded or grated carrots
In a medium bowl, gently stir gelatin and boiling water until gelatin is dissolved. Drain the pineapple, reserving the juice; set the pineapple aside. Combine lemon juice and pineapple juice. Add enough cold water to equal 2 cups. Stir in salt, if desired. Stir into gelatin mixture. Chill until slightly set (1-2 hours). Stir in pineapple and carrots. Mix well. Pour into serving bowl and chill until set. Serve!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Crispie Caramel Ice Cream Dessert:

It's really nice to have a fabulous and even impressive dessert that takes little to no time to make and even better if it has very few ingredients! Well, believe it or not, this dessert is all that and more!!
It's so easy, takes 5 ingredients and is SO good!!! It's going to be fabulous for the summer, but I first tried it in the winter and it was fabulous then too, so don't limit yourself to just the summer!
I hope you give it a try!!!

3/4 cup (12 tblsp.) Butter, softened
1 & 1/2 cups brown sugar
3 & 3/4 cups Rice Crispie cereal
1/2 gallon (8 cups) vanilla ice cream, softened enough to spread easily
Caramel Ice Cream Topping

Directions for a 9x13 baking dish:
In a medium bowl, mix together butter, brown sugar and cereal. I used a spatula for this, and my butter was just about melted, so it worked fine. Mix until well combined. You don't want any big chunks of butter or sugar. Press 2/3 of this mixture into the bottom of a greased 9x13-inch baking dish. Place in the freezer and let it stand until your ice cream is really soft. When it's soft enough, spread it gently and evenly over the crust. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/3 of the cereal mixture. Cover and freeze until firm (preferably over night). Allow to stand for about 10 minutes and then cut it to serve. Drizzle with caramel ice-cream topping before serving!

Directions for cupcakes:
The same as above, except line a muffin tin with paper cupcake liners. Divide 2/3 of the rice crispy mixture evenly between 20 cupcake liners. Using the back of a spoon, firmly press the mixture down in each cup. Allow to freeze while your ice cream softens. Divide the ice cream evenly between all the cupcakes (you might have a little leftover). Sprinkle with the remaining 1/3 cup rice crispy mixture. Freeze until firm. Remove from muffin tins and place in an airtight container. Store in the freezer! Drizzle with caramel ice-cream topping before serving!
-I've made both the pan version and the cupcake version. Both are equally delicious!
-You can do the crust after your ice cream is already softened, but I found that the crust won't break up, if it's really good and cold, so I like to let it freeze for the entire time it takes the ice cream to soften.
-You can actually use any ice cream topping you want. I'm not a huge caramel fan, but I LOVED it on this! I think it just blends really well with the brown sugar flavor in the crust.
-This is a great make-ahead dessert! As long as it's sealed really tight, it lasts really well in the freezer!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Macaroni Salad:

My mom was, well actually still is, famous for her macaroni salad! And my little brother (who is now bigger than me) used to live off of it! My grandfather was in the hospital for 9 weeks when Kaleb was 2. We stayed at a lot of different people's houses during that time, since mom was usually at the hospital, and it was a long 9 weeks for us. It happened all of the sudden, and they wouldn't let us in the hospital to see Pappy, and it seemed like we were tossed back and forth from one family to another. For being so young, Kaleb did pretty good, though, as long as we brought plenty of macaroni salad for him! That was 14 years ago, and he can't stand it now!! But the rest of us still enjoy it! It's one of those things that didn't really have a recipe, so it took several tries before I could really get exact measurements! I think I have it now, though, and I hope you try it out and enjoy it as much as we do! And as much as Kaleb used to!!!

4 cups uncooked macaroni noodles (about a 16 oz. pkg.)
10 hard-boiled eggs
1 small onion
4 stalks celery
2 cups mayonnaise (we use miracle whip)
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
Cook the noodles according to the package directions, just until done. Drain and set aside to cool. Use an egg slicer, and slice the eggs; add to the noodles. Place onions and celery in a food processor, and finely chop; add to noodles and eggs. In a small bowl, combine mayo, sugar, salt and pepper. Stir into noodles until evenly coated. Serve or chill until ready to serve!

-If you are making this the day before you need it, then you will probably need to add more dressing before you serve it, as the noodles soak up a good bit of what you put on earlier.
-This makes a HUGE amount!! If I was making this for my family for a single meal, I would probably only make a fourth of this! (although you have to take into account, I also only cook 4 chicken breasts for my entire family as well! What's wrong with us?)