Friday, May 28, 2010

Peanut-Butter-Scotch Pretzels

Oh man, it's finally happened. I've got LOSTmania.

My older brother and I made a deal this week: He watches Doctor Who, if I watch LOST. I spent the ENTIRE day watching episodes. I was so into it, in fact, that I forgot that today was Sweet Day!

So, looking for something simple to whip up, I settled for something that I haven't made in a couple of years: Peanut butter butterscotch dipped pretzels! (Or peanut-butter-scotch for short.)

Sorry for the sideways picture! I can't get it to rotate.

They're really easy to do, but also time consuming. It took me an hour to dip about 40 mini pretzels, which filled one cookie sheet. They're sooo tasty, though. Mom and I first made these as a seasonal treat, but I figured that I'd mix it up and make them now!

Everything was fine, except for the dip itself. It was a little on the thick side, and for whatever reason stayed slightly lumpy. Afraid to overcook it though, I simply left it. Someone trying this recipe on their own might add a tablespoon (or two?) of solid vegetable shortening to help smooth it out.

Note: Another great thing about making these is that it makes the house smell like butterscotch!

Peanut-Butter-Scotch Pretzel Recipe
  • One bag of pretzels (mini or full sized, your preference)
  • One 11oz package of butterscotch morsels (found in the baking aisle with chocolate chips)
  • 1/3 cup peanut butter


  • Melt the peanut butter and the entire bag of butterscotch morsels together.
  • Line a cookie sheet with wax paper.
  • Drop some pretzels into the mix, and coat well. Using a fork for regular pretzels, or a toothpick for mini-pretzels, gently shake off the excess coating and leave on the wax paper to dry.
  • For a little extra oomph, put them in the fridge. Being chilled makes the coating more firm.

Well, that's it! I'm giving it the 'quick and easy' tab even though it isn't neccessarily quick. With so few ingredients and instructions, though, it definitely deserves the 'easy'!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Oreo Balls

I've got a loooong work week starting tomorrow. Everyone is taking days off at once, so there's really only a couple of us who are available to work all of the shifts.

Because I KNOW I won't want to bake anything after working 9-5 tomorrow, I thought I'd make something tonight. So I spent the entire day making oreo balls!

They're messy to prepare, but are sooo worth it. Plus you only need three ingredients, so it's easy to do these from memory. Everybody at work loooves these, too.

Note: Using different food colorings in the Almond Bark can instantly make these festive little goodies! Always use a gel-based food coloring though-- the liquid food colorings make the Almond Bark "seize up" and you'll have to get a new package. You could either color all of it, or dip the oreo balls in plain white Almond Bark, then color the leftover and drizzle it over.

Oreo Balls Recipe
  • One package Oreos (plain/original)
  • One package cream cheese
  • One package white Almond Bark


  • Leave the cream cheese out to soften/get to room temperature.
  • Put the Oreos in a large Zip-Loc back (The freezer bag/gallon bag is what I use.)
  • Seal out the air, then use a rolling pin to crush the Oreos as best you can. When you think they're crushed enough, keep crushing for another minute or two because larger chunks are harder to blend.
  • Put the Oreos and cream cheese in a large bowl and blend together until you get a smooth, well incorporated mixture.
  • Put the mixture in the fridge for half an hour to help it firm up.
  • Cover a cookie sheet with wax paper. Roll the mixture into 1" balls, and put on the cookie sheet.
  • Put back in the fridge for an hour.

  • Chop up the Almond Bark and heat until it's melted. (Heat for a minute, then stir every 20 seconds.)
  • Prepare a second cookie sheet with wax paper, for the dipped balls.
  • Taking 4-5 balls from the fridge at a time, drop one at a time into the Almond Bark. Use a toothpick to lift it out, and once it's evenly coated shake off the excess A.B., then put on the wax paper to let it set. (You'll want to have a second toothpick on hand; use it to put extra A.B. over the toothpick hole in the Oreo Ball.)
  • Once they're all coated, put the new pan in the fridge to let them firm up and chill. Then serve!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Cookies au Creme

Originally I planned to make mini-chocolate chip cookie sandwiches, but I decided that they were still too big to be minis, so I came up with something else instead: Cookies au creme! French for cookies with cream! (Clever, right?)
As far as I'm aware, I didn't see these anywhere before I decided to make them, so the recipe is an old chocolate chip cookie recipe I had, and the frosting recipe is the same one mom and I use for frosting regular sugar cookies.

My mini-cookies!

These cookies are mini, complete with mini chocolate chips! To get them small, I used a melon baller-- the larger scoop if you have one with two sizes. Or, from what I gathered from looking, they're about the size of a teaspoon (a measuring spoon, not an actual spoon.)

To keep them from spreading out, I added about 1/4 cup extra flour to the recipe, maybe a little more.
I also cooked them on parchment paper-- NEVER grease a pan if you don't want the cookies to spread!
For the frosting I used regular buttercream-- the recipe is actually on the back of the C&H brand powdered sugar bags. It should be a little more thick than the frosing used to frost cookies, but not too much.. when it holds its own, but can also be manipulated easily, then it's probably a good consistency.

For the design I used a star tip nozzle with a piping bag, and went in a spiral. Then I topped with more mini-chocolate chips! But be sure to sprinkle the chips on as you go, because as the frosting sets, the chips begin to bounce off of it if you drop them on too late.

I didn't actually count, but I'd estimate that I made about 70 mini-cookies. By the time I'd frosted 30, I was exhausted (and bored) so I left the rest plain, for milk-dipping.

It's time-consuming to make each little cookie, to bake, then to prep the frosting and frost, but they're worth it!
Cookies au Creme Recipe

  • 2 sticks of butter, softened
  • 3/4 cups brown sugar
  • 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 12-oz bag of semi-sweet MINI-chocolate chips


  • Preheat oven to 375
  • Blend together the butter, sugars, and vanilla until creamy.
  • Beat in eggs, one at a time.
  • Beat in salt and baking soda.
  • Beat in flour, bit by bit, until fully incorporated.
  • Use a spoon to mix in about 3/4 of the chips.
  • Cover a few baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Using a melon baller (or teaspoon), scoop out leveled-off spoonfuls of dough. (I used a butter knife to get it out from the scoop.)
  • Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown.
  • Leave on the pan for a minute or two, then scoop onto wire racks to cool.


  • ++This recipe is doubled from what's on the back of the bag++
  • 2 lbs powdered sugar
  • 11 tbsp butter, softened
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup milk (estimation-- I keep about 3/4 a cup on hand and eyeball it)


  • Blend together the butter, vanilla, and salt.
  • Beat in the powdered sugar, a third at a time (to cut down on a possible mess) until all blended, adding milk as you go.
  • If too stiff, add a little extra milk. If too runny, add in more powdered sugar.
  • Put the frosting in a piping bag with the star nozzle already inserted.
  • Frost the cookies, flat-side up, by going around the cookie in a spiral.
  • Sprinkle with extra chips!

Sunday, May 9, 2010


One of my friends discovered recently that she has Celiac disease-- or, she can't eat gluten. So when our group got together for Movie Night, I decided to make something gluten free for dessert. They're either called buckeyes or buckeye candy, depending on how you've heard it.

I discovered this recipe on the internet (link at the end of the post.) In short, they're peanut butter balls dipped in melted milk chocolate. Reese's, eat your heart out!

After a bit of research, I discovered that they're called buckeyes because they resemble the nuts that come from Buckeye trees. Google images proved it!

Everybody at work loved them. LOVED them. They're so simple to make, too. I'm giving them the "quick and easy" stamp because, even though they have to be chilled for an hour, the preparation is otherwise very...quick and easy.

The recipe directs you to use a toothpick to dip the PB ball halfway in the chocolate. This leaves a less-than-pleasing hole in the top though. My solution: After putting them in the fridge to chill, I simply smoothed over the tops with my finger!

Note: When chilled, I put most in a glass 9x13 pan. The rest went into a metal pan. Both pans went into the freezer, but when they were taken out, the balls in the metal pan had spread and flattened slightly. I suggest using a glass pan to help them retain their shape.

Buckeyes recipe
  • 2 cups creamy peanut butter (NOT all-natural, according to the recipe)
  • 1/2 stick (or 4 tbsp) butter, softened
  • 3 3/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 12-oz package of milk chocolate chips (recipe calls for semi-sweet, but I substituted and think they came out even better this way)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening (to keep the chocolate smooth and creamy)


  • Beat peanut butter and regular butter in a bowl until creamy/smooth.
  • Beat in the powdered sugar, a little at a time. This amount was perfect, so don't go short! Otherwise the balls will be too difficult (sticky) to roll.
  • Roll into 1" balls. Place in a wax-paper lined 9x13 pan. Freeze for about one hour.
  • Once the hour is up, melt together your chocolate and vegetable shortening, checking on/stirring until entirely melted.
  • Prepare a cookie sheet (or two) with wax paper.
  • Take 7-8 balls from the freezer at a time.
  • Using a toothpick, dip each ball about 1/2-3/4 of the way into the chocolate.
  • Shake off the excess chocolate, then run the bottom edge on the side of the bowl (this eliminates the chocolate blob that forms on the bottom of the ball otherwise.) Place on cookie sheet.
  • Once all of the balls are dipped, put in the fridge to help them set.
  • Before packing them up, use your finger to smooth the toothpick hole off of the top.

Be sure to keep these chilled if it all possible, even when they're being served. The coldness provides an extra crispness to the chocolate, and gives the peanut butter an extra somethin'-somethin'.

Recipe came from here:

Rock Chalk Jayhawk Cookies

This really hasn't been my two weeks! I got over my sickness, but I've been sooo ridiculously stressed from my finals (and the papers I have to write!) that I didn't even remember to update my blog until today. So there's going to be a double post.

My lil bro's dorm has the most awesome RA ever. She arranges all sorts of activities to make them feel like they really do have a home away from home. For their last big bang their entire floor had a picnic, and they had one request-- Jayhawk cookies.

L5 stands for his dorm and floor!

I don't know what's in the cookies that makes them so great, but everybody loves them.

So mom and I made Jayhawk cookies. It took us FOUR hours to frost FOUR dozen cookies.

And it was worth it!

Here they go marching one by one hoorah, hoorah...

No recipe (sorry kids, it's a secret ;) but you can enjoy the pictures!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Rice Krispies Treats

I haven't been feeling well lately, but my co-workers have come to expect food on the weekends. So I settled for making something easy, that wouldn't add to my stress level: Rice Krispies Treats!
I don't think I've met a single person who doesn't like them. Even sick, I couldn't resist eating the excess mixture off of the spoon when I was done.

For the recipe, I stick with the 666 rule: It's easy to remember (for more than one reason), and also delicious.

This is Leo. Leo is my baby, and he LOVES mallows!

Rice Krispies Treats Recipe

  • 6 tbsp butter
  • 6 cups marshmallows
  • 6 cups Rice Krispies


  • Coat a 9x13 pan with cooking spray to avoid sticking.
  • Combine the butter and marshmallows in a large, microwave safe bowl.
  • Microwave for about two minutes. Using a wooden/plastic stirring spoon, stir at the minute mark, then the thirty second mark. Once the mallows are totally melted, you're done.
  • In a separate, extra-large bowl pour in the cereal.
  • Pour the mallow mixture into the large bowl, and use the stirring spoon to coat the cereal.
  • Pour the new mixture into your 9x13 pan.
  • Coat your fingers in a bit of butter to keep yourself from being stuck to, and press the mixture into the pan until even.
  • Let cool, cut, and enjoy!

Check out the Fruity Pebbles Treats, too!