Monday, March 28, 2016

Easter Part One: Rice Krispie Nests!

Easter seemed to sneak up on me rather quickly this year.

Lauren had a week off from preschool for spring break and that week was a blur, because when you break the routine of sassy 3.5 year old for a few days, everybody pays for it.  
I think that's partly why it slipped my mind that Easter was approaching. 
Also, it's weird that Easter is in March right?

So, when Lauren went back to school on Tuesday, and I finally looked at the calendar, I realized that her Easter party was on Thursday.  

I had a few ideas about what to make for the party, sugar cookies, cupcakes, no bake cookies, bunny things etc. but finally decided on Rice Krispie Nests. 

One of the reasons I chose them was because if I was making Easter treats for 20 kids and a few teachers, I needed to get on it and Rice Krispie anythings are usually pretty fast and easy. 
I also had a huge bag of little chocolate eggs that I had planned on using for preschool treats, and I knew that the nests would be really cute!


Rice Krispies Nests:
(Makes about 12-15 nests)
  • 1/4 cup margarine or butter
    5 cups miniature or 40 regular sized (250 g pkg) marshmallows *see note below 
    1/2 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
     6 cups Rice Krispies cereal

  • Grease 12 cupcake pans.
  • In large saucepan over low heat, melt butter. 
  • Add marshmallows and stir until melted and well blended. 
  • Remove from heat.
  • Stir in vanilla. Add cereal, stirring until coated.
  • Using a greased spoon, scoop some of the mixture into each cup.  Be sure sure to keep the spoon greased. 
  • Press down the center and shape the sides to make a "nest". When doing this, make sure your hand have some butter on them or else the Rice Krispies will stick to your hands. 
  • Refrigerate until set, at least half an hour

  • *Just to mix things up a bit, I used the fruity colored marshmallows instead of regular ones. 

    • Once the nests were set, I piped some green buttercream  into each nest using the 
    • Wilton #233 grass tip and then added 3 little chocolate eggs to each nest. 

  • To package the nests, I placed each one in a cupcake liner and then in an Easter bag from the dollar store. I also attached these cute tags I found on Pinterest. 

Happy Easter!

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Sunday, March 20, 2016

The Perfect Weekend Treat!

Friday Night.
Can you think of a better way to kick off the weekend than by filling your face with homemade caramel popcorn?
I can't!

Around here we all love popcorn.
It doesn't matter whether it's plain or coated in that sweet, brown sugary, butter mixture, we'll eat it. 

We don't have caramel popcorn that often because honestly, it's pretty much just butter and sugar, and as good as it is, we don't need it!
When I make it, it's usually for special nights like when the girls uncles come to visit, or we're having a family movie night. 

Friday night I made it because earlier in the day I may have bribed made a deal with my 3 year old that if she napped, we'd have caramel popcorn and watch a movie. 
I'm not overly proud to admit that, but that's life right? Sometimes as a parent, or a human you need some quiet time. 
I needed an hour of quiet. I just needed to sit a drink a cup of silence.

I'm not sure what's been going on around here lately, but its been a little bit crazy! 
Lauren and Olivia haven't been napping, it takes hours to put them to bed, and then when they finally do go to sleep, they end up waking up 3+ times a night and at some point both of them crawl into our bed. Or they decide that 4 am is the perfect time to play.
Maybe it's the time change or the fact that Lauren is on spring break from preschool and our routines are all messed up...

Thankfully our deal worked, both girls napped, (it was a short nap, but it was a nap!), and we got to have cararmel popcorn.

I find that the original recipe makes too much for just the 4 of us, so I just halved the recipe, which is posted below. 

Caramel Popcorn:
(Makes about 6-8 cups of caramel popcorn)
6 cups of popcorn *see note below
1/2 cup salted butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tbsp + 2 tsp corn syrup
1/2 - 1 tsp salt

Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
If popping your own popcorn, do so now and place in a large bowl.
In a saucepan melt butter, brown sugar, corn syrup and salt together over medium heat. 
Bring to boil. 
Boil for 4 minutes without stirring.
Pour caramel mixture over popcorn and stir to coat evenly.
Pour popcorn onto lined pan and place in oven. 
Bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
Allow popcorn to cool on a parchment lined counter.

*I didn't pop my own popcorn this time, I used Angie's Boom Chicka Pop. I didn't measure it out, but I think it was about 6 cups. I just added  more popcorn as I needed it. 

Oh and remember that cup of tea that I mentioned? The one I was looking forward to drinking in silence?
I ended up dumping it out about 6 hours after I made it. It was ice cold and pretty much full.

They're lucky they're SO cute!!

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Sunday, March 6, 2016

Not My Usual Kind of Cake!

Even though these aren't sweet cakes topped with way too much icing, my girls love them!

So what kind of cake that isn't chocolate or covered in buttercream do they love?

Tuna cakes of course!!!

They aren't the prettiest, but they taste good!

As I mentioned in my macaroni & cheese post, the girls could eat tuna sandwiches or mac & cheese, every single day, but I get bored making the same thing all the time. So, to mix things up a bit, I've started making tuna cakes again.

A couple years ago I found a recipe for tuna cakes that the girls loved.
I liked them because they froze well and we could have them for lunch or pack them in our snack bag for trips to the park.

The only problem was that to make enough tuna cakes for a couple of meals and snacks, I had to double or triple to recipe. With all the ingredients (eggs, cheese, tuna, sour cream etc.) and the amount needed, they were pretty expensive to make all the time. And they had tomato paste in them, which is something I never seem to have in the cupboard.

So after trying a couple different recipes (that weren't a hit), I did a bit of experimenting and came up with a recipe that meets all of our needs...they are quick and easy for me to make, they freeze well and most importantly, the girls like them!

Tuna Cakes:
Makes about 16 mini cakes)
2 large eggs -lightly beaten with a fork
1/4 cup mayonnaise or sour cream *see below
2 tbsp melted butter
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
1 can tuna, drained
1/2 - 1 cup shredded cheese

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
Lightly grease 16 mini muffin tins.
In a medium sized mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, mayonnaise, butter, and lemon juice.
Add Panko breadcrumbs into into the egg mixture and stir.
Once combined, add tuna and mix well.
Spoon mixture into prepared muffin tins and add shredded cheese.
Bake for 15-18 minutes.

*For these tuna cakes I used a combination of mayonnaise and sour cream. I used 3 tbsp of mayonnaise and 1 tbsp of sour cream to equal 1/4 cup.

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Tuesday, March 1, 2016

One Year!

It was one year ago today, March 1st, that I hit 'Publish' on my blog. 
When I started it, I wasn't sure how often I'd update it or if it would even last. Turns out blogging is a lot of fun!

My 'When I realized it was my one year blog birthday,
I quickly made this for Instagram' picture

Thank you to everyone that's stopped by Mommy, Can I Lick the Spoon?!

And don't forget to check back this weekend for a new post!

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