Monday, October 29, 2007

Platter of Severed Hands


Halloween is near and you would not believe how creative some people are when it comes to spooky food. Not me though, i'm not into Halloween, i don't like scary things at all, i like to keep my "spooky" G- rated. But when i saw this 'recipe' over on i was suddenly inspired.

Spooky Gloved Munch Mix

I just had a Halloween themed makeover party. As favors, i handed out severed hands. These went over BIG. There were tons of "ew gross, and ooh cool" to go around.

I simplified the process by using Crunch n Munch to make the flesh for the hands. The hardest part was finding clear gloves, then cleaning said gloves. See these gloves are coated inside and out with a thin coat of some sort of powder. On the bag of the gloves, it doesn't even say what the powder is. Regardless, i wasn't going to stuff one finger until those gloves were totally residue-free.

Once the gloves were wiped clean and dry on both the inside and the outside, it was a cinch to pop in the candy corn and the popcorn.

I also created a frightening feast using some homemade goodies, some store bought. On the menu:

Witches Warts- Alexia Mushroom Bites
Goblin's Eyes- Baked Cheese Olives
Rest in Pizza- California Pizza Kitchen White Pizza
Mold & Slime Dip- Friday's Spinach, Cheese and Artichoke Dip
Skeleton Fingers w/ Congealed Blood- Pistachio Crusted Chicken w/ strawberry preserve dipping sauce

We had a devilishly good time! :)

Friday, October 19, 2007

P is for Pumpkin

Cause i already used the C is for Cupcake line... :P

It's STILL good enough for me!

It's FALL, WOO HOO, even though it's still 87 degrees out. The calendar says fall and that means pumpkins! i LOVE fall and i LOVE pumpkin. So time to get my pumpkin on. One can of pumpkin purchased, and off on a mission i go. Looking for something sweet, someone linked me up to this recipe and i'm all over it!

Pumpkin Bliss Cupcakes

Aren't they gorgeous? I swear i was so excited to see these perfectly plump cupcakes come out of my oven.

The first ones i frosted, were frosted and sprinkled with chopped pecans. I loved the texture the pecan added to the cupcake, but much to my surprise, my perfectly plump cupcakes had the wrong cake to frosting ratio. Definitely NOT enough frosting.

So we proceeded to eat the remaining cupcakes this way.

Step 1: Nuke cupcake in micro for 10 seconds.
Step 2: Take warm cupcake, slather the top wtih frosting.
Step 3: Eat top of cupcake.
Step 4: Flip cupcake upside down, slather the bottom with frosting.
Step 5: Finish enjoying the perfectly frosted cupcake, lick fingers, make mmmm sounds.

Repeat as necessary! :)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007


Now that it's getting cooler out (i think it's 83 yesterday, instead of the usual 89), i was inspired to make a cool weather dinner. This was my first time ever making beef stew and when i told my hubby we were having beef stew for dinner, he said he had never had it before. So this dinner was going to be a hit or miss.

I went on a mission to find a good recipe, but i couldn't find one that i felt would suit our likes and dislikes. So i took a little bit from ALL the recipes i came across, and came up with my own!

Meli's Beef Stew

1 sweet potato chopped but chunky
2 white potatoes chopped but chunky
2 onions chopped but chunky
1 small bag of baby carrots
1.5 lb cubed stew beef
1 pt white mushrooms, halved, stems removed
3 cloves garlic, smashed
2 cups of red wine
1 small can of tomato sauce
1 can of condensed beef broth

Throw everything in the slow cooker in the order mentioned except for the cornstarch. Cook on high for 6 hours. A few minutes prior to serving, take out 1C broth, whisk in cornstarch (i used about 1/4c), then return that mixture to the crock pot and stir. Repeat until desired thickness is achieved. Serve immediately with a side of bread for dunking.

Luckily it was a hit, he got up in the middle of eating for seconds and everything. His only complaint was he wanted more beef and i wanted more onions, so i wrote the recipe above already adding more of both.

It was a snap to put together, and i love that i was only in the kitchen for less then 10 minutes. Great for a weeknight dinner. :)

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Fabulous Chicken

I've eaten ALOT of chicken in my lifetime, enough to not get excited about chicken...ever. I don't order it when i go out, and i have only recently built up a small repertoire of chicken recipes i actually do enjoy at home. So if i wrote out my short list of chicken recipes, this would be at the top of the list with hearts dotting the i's.

Pistachio Crusted Chicken

I've made these for a crowd, i've made these just for us, every single time, this chicken is a hit! So easy, so tasty! The pistachios really add a nice flavor to the chicken. I just love using the honey mustard as a binder instead of an egg, it also adds a subtle layer of flavor.

For a less messy way of making these, i have prepped the chicken strips and left them in a zip lock bag with the honey mustard combo for a couple of hours. Then when i was ready, i took the strips and put them in another zip lock bag that had the crumbs and nuts in it. Just a quick shake and they are ready to be thrown on a prepared baking pan.

I serve it with a strawberry or raspberry sauce, which is just seedless jam and red wine vinegar stirred together and nuked in the micro till warm.

Give this fabulous dish a try, then come back and tell me how much you loved it! ;)

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

2 Bites

Looking for something different for a quick app for a ladies lunch i hosted, i came across this unique recipe and decided to give it a shot. I love allrecipes (foodtv and cookinglight) for the real life feedback you get from cooks who have made these recipes before. Here's a perfect example where reading reviews before you make the dish really comes in handy. Although highly rated, the recipe as written is FLAWED.

Baked Cheese Olives

Again, the recipe is flawed. You must add 2 Tbs of water to actually make the batter. Also, i used Queen Olives, and found that i needed to double the batter recipe to get all 24 olives wrapped. Though the recipe isn't written correctly, with some minor adjustments, it was a really great recipe.

I had to get all clever and put them in my olive dish. Cause well, it IS an olive, and what the heck, i'm going to pull out this odd dish at every opportunity i get. :P

I LOVED these, loved them!!! Biting into the cheese biscuit and finding a little olive treasure tucked inside is so much fun! Once you fix the error in the recipe, it's a cinch to make and as a bonus, you can make these in advance and freeze them. So on party day it's one less thing to do. LOVE THAT! :)

Monday, October 1, 2007

Turkey Picadillo

Picadillo is a staple in any Cuban home. My friend Christy shot me a link to a lightened up version of the traditional favorite. She actually shared with the a lightened up version of a Cuban Feast. This one is bookmarked, as i want to try to take on boliche...someday! Cuban Feast Makeover

As i was making it, i realized for our tastes, i needed to make some changes to the recipe. I made some slight alterations and popped it into the weight watchers recipe builder and viola!

Turkey Picadillo

This was delicious and deceptively light. You couldn't even tell that i used ground turkey instead of ground beef. As you are cooking it, you can figure out if you like it soupy. Personally, i like it a little soupier then dry. If you like it drier, just keep simmering away. No matter how you make it, this is a must try. Enjoy! :)