Budget Gourmet Mom has a sweet twist on an Easter dinner essential with her Orange Bunny Rolls. She even offers a lime option, too!

With Easter right around the corner, we hopped right to it!

 

Please click here to visit Budget Gourmet Mom and see the instructions that we followed!

 

 

Alicia - TCCReviewer #1 – Alicia

Mission: Easter is just around the corner and these little pastries are so darn cute.  Why not?!

 

Details:

Make sure you read and re-read the directions. It can be a bit overwhelming to look at but not bad once you get started.

  • I decided to go with the Cinnamon and orange route, as I did not have Cardamom on hand.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

When warming the milk concoction, be sure to use softened butter. I made the mistake of using cold butter and I left it on low heat to melt. In reading the directions, this mix should have reached 120 degrees to 130 degrees. Using a candy thermometer is very helpful as my mix reached nearly 145 degrees. Whoops! I waited for this to cool before adding to dry mixture with eggs. Scrambled eggs or curdling is not what I am shooting for. Ha!

As far as measuring the dough to a specific 14×10 inch rectangle and all the jazz. I totally eyeballed it. I am all about making my life easy.

Keep your flour out because the dough can get sticky

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!

Pros:

Fun idea and the kids liked the end result!

Cons:

No cons really – just that the whole process of waiting for the dough to rise can be time consuming.

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!

Conclusion:

So my bunnies turned out good, but not great!

They are delicious when first out of the oven with the glaze on top and the orange gave it a really nice flavor.  The next day though, not as great – so be sure that you eat them up right away!

I am not 100% sure I would make them again as there were quite a few steps and my kids tend to get bored after about 15 minutes!

 

 

Reviewer #2 – Amanda

Mission: I thought these rolls were too cute to pass up. I am also a sucker for baked goods of all varieties, especially the themed kind.

 

Details:

  • I chose Allspice over Cardamom simply for the fact that is what I had in my pantry.
  • To make quick work of zesting my fruit I used my handy Microplane Grater similar to this one!
  • Although the recipe suggested using a hand mixer and kneading by hand I busted out my KitchenAid Mixer. It is like having a room full of minions do your work while you sit back and sip mimosas (I imagine that is what you would drink while minions do your work).

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Not sure where things went wrong but my bunnies were not as pretty and perfect as shown in the post.

I found it hard to roll my snakes out without making them look all rough. You definitely want to cut your pieces long enough. I made only the small bunnies and even those seemed mammoth.

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!

Pros:

These are REALLY delicious and fresh tasting thanks to the fruit juice/zest and the fluffy dough.

My kids loved them!

Cons:

I found the recipe to be a little fussy, plus I failed miserably to achieve the adorable bunnies when all was said and done.

That is no fault of Krista from Budget Gourmet Mom! This epic fail was all me.

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!

Conclusion:

The end result was really great but I think next time I will stress less about the shape and simply turn these into rolls.

The flavor will be the same minus the fluff. Get it? Like bunny fluff! That’s all folks!

 

 

Reviewer #3 – Kristy

Mission: I have been on a big citrus kick lately so combining oranges for these cute bunnies was a no brainer! And a great project to practice for my future kiddos!

 

Details:

  • I made a couple of modifications with Allspice, tangerine peel and orange juice.
  • I got to break out my favorite kitchen appliance, my KitchenAid Mixer, and my new Zester which worked like a charm for the tangerine rind.
  • I goofed on following instructions as usual, I ended up making 2 extra-large bunnies and only 3 small bunnies!

Tips & Tricks Learned:

I don’t have a Rolling Pin so a straight-sided glass cylinder vase worked perfectly for the dough!

I also used wax paper for rolling out dough onto flour for super easy clean up.

Cutting the dough was a cinch by using my Pizza Cutter!

I used aluminum foil under my cooling racks to catch the leftover icing from icing the bunnies and for more easy clean-up.  A spoon worked best for drizzling the icing on the hot out of the oven bunnies!

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!

Pros:

Pretty easy to follow and taste great!  Love the variations you could make!

Cons:

It may take a while to get those cute bunny ears!

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!

Conclusion:

Perfect for a holiday tradition by allowing kids to cook, too!

My taste testers were my office co-workers and my husband, who all gave a big thumbs up for this recipe.  Simple, yet delicious!

 

 

Reviewer #4 – Sarah

Mission: To make these darling bunny rolls for our little cuties and their cousins for cousin weekend! I have not made any form of bread in quite awhile, so I knew I’d be rusty going into this one.

Details:

I didn’t have Cardamom, but I found a tip online that noted to substitute equal parts Cinnamon and Nutmeg together. I had both of those on-hand, so that was the route I went and it worked well!

Tips & Tricks Learned:

I didn’t realize I was short powdered sugar until I had the bunnies baking and I needed to prep the glaze!

I only had ¼ cup on hand, so I used: ¼ cup powdered sugar, 1 tsp. fresh squeezed lime juice, 1 tsp. lime peel, 1 T. milk. It made just enough glaze to cover the little bunny rolls, which was just what I needed!  Phew!

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!

Pros:

Was fairly easy to prepare the dough and the rise time was perfect for clean up time.

Overall, I really enjoyed making these and I really loved the lime and cardamom flavor. I just may have to try the orange flavor next!

Cons:

I was surprised to see that some of the bunny rolls did not maintain their shape while baking. But, it sure didn’t change the taste!

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!

Conclusion:

These bunny rolls are adorable and will be perfect to serve at Easter brunch!

We served them at lunchtime with the rest of the meal for our little kiddos and their cousins. Out of the seven of them, three really loved these and the others thought they were so-so. I had no problem downing a few of the left over ones myself!

 

 

Reviewer #5 – Sheri

Mission: Well these little bunnies were just too cute not to try! Look at those little tails, seriously! I really thought my children would get a kick out of them.

 

Details:

  • The original recipe called for either Cardamom or Allspice.  I went with Allspice.
  • Based on my learning experience with the Pull Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread, I made sure that the room was nice and warm for the dough to rise.
  • I’m always nervous about screwing up the recipe; adding too much or too little.  While I was concentrating on adding the remaining flour to the dough to get that soft consistency, I was so worked up that I completely forgot to add the orange juice! Fail.
  • I let the kids help with making the bunnies. They thoroughly enjoyed putting the little bunny tails on. Unfortunately I didn’t get any pictures because my hands were covered in flour.
  • Into the oven they went and I hoped they would turn out okay. They were a little “plump” so I baked them a little bit longer.
  • For some reason my Confectioners Sugar was a little lumpy, so the glaze didn’t come out so well.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

I highly recommend a Microplane Grater to get a nice fine grate.

Also, I would have used my Mixer and dough hook had I thought ahead. Although mixing with a wooden spoon provided a good arm workout.

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!

Pros:

They were really super cute.

Cons:

My kids weren’t too crazy about the flavor.

The allspice was a little overpowering, which might not have been the case if I had remembered the darn orange juice.

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!

Conclusion:

Overall these are really cute. Of course mine didn’t come out picture perfect like the ones displayed, but then again I’m a novice baker when it comes to dough.

The kids had fun making them, but weren’t too crazy about eating them. I think that would have been different if I had remembered the orange juice! Duh!

I may try making these adorable bunnies with my aunt’s egg biscuit recipe which I know they will enjoy!

 
 

We Tried It - Orange Bunny Rolls!


The darling and very tasty
Orange Bunny Rolls and photo by Budget Gourmet Mom

 


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Inspired by a much loved Mexican Bean Salad, Once Upon a Chef has perfected her Black Bean Salad with Corn, Red Peppers, Avocado & Lime-Cilantro Vinaigrette, making it positively drool-worthy!

 

With warm temps outside, we’re up for any dish that doesn’t need the oven or stove; and who can resist a chance to eat up some of the season’s freshest ingredients?

 

Please click here to visit Once Upon a Chef and see the instructions that we followed!

 

 

Reviewer #1 – Kristy

Mission: Healthy, fresh and delicious is always a key when trying new recipes! This hit the spot!

 

Details:

Get ready to chop…lots to chop, but well worth it.

  • I grilled the corn on the grill first then added it to the dish.
  • I used minced garlic out of the jar since I didn’t have any cloves.
  • I may add some green onions next time for some extra flavor.

bb salad 1

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Definitely get a juicer for the lime. I don’t have one, and that would have definitely been handy.

We enjoyed ours with some tilapia from the Blackened Tilapia Taco recipe!

 

 

Pros:

I had it marinate for an hour and it was still delicious so don’t hesitate to make it last-minute.

It’s even great the next day!

Cons:

Absolutely, none.

Kristy - BB Salad

Conclusion:

Mike and I both enjoyed!  It’s perfect as a side salad with a meal or great with tortilla chips as a dip!  I will definitely be making next weekend!!

 

 

Reviewer #2 – Amanda

Mission: This recipe was a great way to attempt to get my hubby to eat black beans.

 

 

Details:

  • For the most part I followed the instructions from Once Upon A Chef exactly (minus the fact that I forgot to add the cilantro).
  • I did add a jalapeno for a little heat but that was the only change I made intentionally.
  • I did cut it in half since I am the only one that really loves beans in our house.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Definitely doesn’t make a great left over (gets very runny and strange-looking – although it still tasted pretty good but we eat with our eyes so who are we kidding here).

I could have cut the recipe down to just a ¼ but the thought of that math makes my head hurt.

 

Pros:

This would make a perfect accompaniment to add to a fish taco. You could whip up a batch of the fabulous Blackened Tilapia Tacos we reviewed a while back and add it to them. MMMM.

This is a great summer dish since produce is best this time of year and our markets seem to be overflowing with beautiful color. I tried this as a salsa too and it is great with chips!

Cons:

Really just the leftover thing. It just didn’t “look” like it would taste good the second day and I had to close my eyes to take the first few bites.

Amanda - BB Salad

Conclusion:

YUM. Two thumbs up! This is going straight into my recipe book. My gal pals will love it (even if my family wasn’t on board).

 

 

Reviewer #3 – Sheri

Mission: The sight of this recipe made me drool. With 4th of July coming I was looking for a light side that will please the crowd.

 

Details:

The recipe is very easy to follow, basically just throw all the ingredients into a bowl (saving the avocado for last). Mix, chill, and serve.

  • I took a short cut and used frozen corn instead of cutting from the cob. I’m a sucker for a time saver. It gave me time to make my own pitas. They’re delicious and paired perfectly with this recipe.
  • I highly suggest letting the salad chill in the refrigerator for a while as suggested in the original post. Let the flavors come together

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Squeeze some lime juice on the avocado before tossing it in. It helps prevent them from browning.

Sheri - BB Salad 1

Pros:

Incredibly delicious and sure to please a crowd.

Cons:

I divided the recipe in half and really wish I had more.

Sheri - BB Salad

Conclusion:

I absolutely LOVED this recipe. It had many of my favorite ingredients. I’m avocado obsessed.

Paired with my homemade pita chips, I was all ready to enjoy my Saturday night. This recipe is definitely a winner and full of yummy goodness.

I know what I’m bring to this week’s 4th of July cookout!

 

 

Reviewer #4 – Maren

Mission: I could not wait to make this recipe, it’s right up my alley!  I am a lover of each and every ingredient in this salad.  Yum!

 

Details:

  • I don’t love red peppers, so I went with orange!
  • I used a 12 oz. bag of frozen sweet corn – worked like a charm!  I eat this brand all the time and I do feel like it’s crunchy and fresh tasting when allowed to thaw on it’s own.  I’m pretty sure that I used more than called for, but whatever, I love corn!
  • I went a little heavy on the lime juice and garlic.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

IMG_3476

I use lime juice in just about every recipe that we eat.  I love it!  Every couple of months, I buy a bag full of limes and take some time to squeeze them all, then pour the juice into ice cube trays so that I always have real lime juice when I need it.  Way better than the stuff you buy in the little plastic lime bottle at the store.

Enjoy with Xochitl tortilla chips.  They are the best!

If you’re chop-challenged, you can use a pizza cutter!

Pros:

I LOVE this salad so much!  I have made it 6 times and have ingredients in the fridge for more!  I eat it on chips, on it’s own, and have even added rotisserie chicken!

Cons:

Even though I am a huge lover of avocado, I actually liked this salad better without it.  Not really a con, but my own preference.

Maren - BB Salad

Conclusion:

This recipe is great.  It’s so fresh and light, perfect for summer noshing.

While I do prefer this salad without the avocado, it’s great with it, too!  Versatile and easy to make, this one was a fast favorite.

 

 

Reviewer #5 – Sarah

Mission: I’m always on the lookout for easy and tasty recipes to prep for events. This one sounded like it was one of those, and in addition sounded healthy!

 

Details:

I modified this recipe from the start!

  • I decided to make it more of a chip dip vs. a salad. I picked up tortilla chips when gathering the ingredients to serve with the dip and it was a hit!!
  • Though I like to eat as many healthy fats as I can, I have never been a lover of avocado. I just can’t get used to the taste and texture, so I left them out of this recipe – I know, selfish! Though, in my case, it helped as I made this dip for two separate events where it would have been too difficult to add to the salad right before serving.
  • I really love a recipe that calls for ingredients I have on-hand. I had Iowa sweet corn from my parent’s farm in the freezer, mini sweet peppers and garlic in the fridge and sweet onions in the pantry, which I used instead of shallots. In addition, I already had all of the seasonings that were called for.
  • At the grocery store, I picked up the black beans, limes and cilantro and then got to work.
  • The only items I had to dice were the peppers, onion and garlic. And then I zested the limes with my handheld grater, which worked great!
  • To cut-up the cilantro, I used my kitchen shears and added closer to 3/4 cup to the mix.
  • After prepping, I let the dip sit in the fridge for 2-3 hours before attending each event I served this at.

It was a huge hit and was gone by the end of the night!

Tips & Tricks Learned:

chips_dip

Using a handheld grater to zest your limes works great – just watch your fingers!

Cut the sugar down to 1 tablespoon, or even omit altogether. In my opinion, it wasn’t necessarily needed.

If you make this as a chip dip, cut down the amount of olive oil added. I only used 6 tablespoons.

 

Pros:

Easy to make and oh so tasty! And, with the addition of the cayenne, it had a nice spicy kick!

Cons:

Honestly can’t think of any – loved it and will definitely make again.

Sarah - BB Salad

Conclusion:

Loved this dip! It was easy to modify for your own needs. Even my husband ate it and went back for seconds, and that’s saying something!

 

 BB Salad Conclusion


The gorgeous
Black Bean Salad with Corn, Red Peppers, Avocado & Lime-Cilantro Vinaigrette and it’s photo by Once Upon a Chef


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A love for fruit snacks is almost mandatory in the kid world these days, but what’s in those things anyway? 
Mama Mouse Says
has shared her own recipe for homemade Gummy Fruit Snacks made with easy ingredients that may already be in your refrigerator!

 

Always searching for healthy treats to feed to our little ones, we were eager to give this clever recipe a try!

 

Please click here to visit Mama Mouse Says and see the instructions that we followed!

 

 

Alicia - TCCReviewer #1 – Alicia

Mission: I have always wanted to try and tackle a homemade fruit snack recipe but had been a bit discouraged by the lack of easy-to-follow recipes. This recipe was super simple and I am all about fast and easy, and kid approved or course!

Details:

I followed the recipe exactly.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

You definitely need a food processor to create this recipe. I suppose you could use a blender and get the same results. I did find that by blending/pulsing the mixture, I got a lot of air bubbles. Let your mixture settle a bit before pouring into your pan and LEAVE in the fridge for at least 2-3 hours or overnight.

Also, being the goofball that I am, I purchased 6 full packages of the gelatin at the store not realizing that one package contains 4 pouches inside. DUH! You don’t have to twist my arm to make more.
Alicia - Snacks 1

Pros:

Very healthy and delicious.

Cons:

By using a small fondant/cookie cutter, you have a lot of wasted product, although it looks so pretty.

Alicia - Snacks 2

Conclusion:

My kids loved these snacks so much, that they gobbled up my first batch before I even noticed. I am so thrilled on how easy it was to make and that I know exactly what is in them. No artificial flavors or colors- YES!!!!!

This is a must try recipe. 2 sticky-thumbs up!

 

 

Reviewer #2 – Amanda

Mission: Make a yummy and healthy treat for the kiddos.

 

 

Details:DSCN7948

I followed Mama Mouse’s recipe exactly with the exception of needing slightly more juice as I was a little shy on fruit juice.

  • I chose a little Mott’s apple juice with veggies. It worked like a charm!
  • I also used a sweet little cutter to made quarter sized flowers. They were very pretty but a little fussy.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

As soon as I poured the liquid puree into my cookie sheet I decided that I needed a smaller pan for next time. My gummies ended up being a little bit thinner than I wanted.

I also lined the pan with a layer of Glad Press’n Seal for ease of removing the gummies.

Amanda - Snacks 1

Pros:

This really was a great sweet treat packed with fruit and very little sugar.

Cons:

I would have liked for them to be a little more like fruit leather rather than slightly tacky like they were.

Also, if I make these again I will just cut little squares instead of using a cutter.

Amanda - Snacks 2

Conclusion:

This was a fun experiment with VERY edible results. My kids thought they were very fun to eat too.

 

 

Reviewer #3 – Sheri

Mission: My kids are crazy for fruit snacks but I recently cut them out of their diet and now I’m the bad guy. Maybe this all-natural homemade fruit snack recipe will fill the void and make me “Awesome Mom” again.

 

Details:

This was a very easy recipe to follow.

  • I chose to use strawberries because it’s a fruit that all three of my boys love.
  • For juice I used Newman’s Pomegranate Lemonade, another winner in our house and it also provided the citric component the recipe called for.

The first thing I did was line the tray with plastic so I would be ready. I then poured the juice into the blender. I quickly heated up the diced strawberries and honey. While they were heating up I added the 5 packets of gelatin.

I combined all of the ingredients as directed and poured it onto the try. It looked a bit frothy. I let them set overnight. When I took the tray out in the morning it still didn’t look hard enough. I left it there a few more hours and it was still strange looking. It was an odd combination of spongy and rubbery. Honestly, it reminded me of the nasty gel-like ring when you open a can of wet dog food. Blech.

I cut them up and passed them onto my taste-testers. It got a 1 out of 3. My oldest was thrilled; the other two guys spit them out. I think it was just a texture thing.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

I think adding a 6th packet of gelatin might give it a better texture.

Sheri - Snacks 1

Pros:

They’re not as sticky as store-bought gummies which stick to their teeth.

Cons:

The texture isn’t quite right and a little repulsive.

Sheri - Snacks 2

Conclusion:

One out of three boys enjoyed these strawberry bites.

I love that it was a really easy recipe using real fruit and no artificial flavors or high fructose corn syrup. There just has to be some sort of way to get the texture a little better. Honestly, I’m not sure I would try this again.

 

 

Fruit Snack Conclusion


The lovely
Gummy Fruit Snacks and photo by Mama Mouse Says


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Eat at Allie’s has created a sweet treat with a disappearing act that is a perfect pairing for the story of the Easter Holiday.  Her Resurrection Rolls are as easy to make as they are fitting for the big day!

 

Stories aside, we love marshmallows and bread.  Period.  Let’s do this!

 

Please click here to visit Eat at Allie’s and see the instructions that we followed!

 

Alicia - TCCReviewer #1 – Alicia

Mission: To create yummy pastries while teaching the kiddos the resurrection of Jesus. My Sons says “Jesus is a nice guy you know”- I couldn’t agree more

 

Details:

This recipe is very easy to follow and the items are all usually on hand in my kitchen!

  • I used both crescent rolls and biscuits. I found that the biscuits were easier to stretch and fit a large marshmallow with breaking or tearing the dough.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Make sure you seal or crimp your ends tightly. Some of my seals broke open and created a huge sticky mess on the bottom of my oven.

Alicia - Rolls 1

Pros:

Very easy recipe to follow and super tasty. Cinnamon and sugar is a plus in my book.

Cons:

The mess in the bottom of my oven!

Alicia - Rolls 2

Conclusion:

Jesus has risen indeed! What a fun recipe and a great way to incorporate a Bible lesson at home with the kids – and did I mention it was a delicious treat!

 

 

Reviewer #2 – Amanda

Mission: Bake up some gooey, doughy goodness while entertaining the kiddos.Happy Kids

 

 

Details:

  • I used all the same ingredients and methods suggested in the original post minus the parchment paper. Clearly I was not paying attention there.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

The parchment paper would have made a huge difference in serving and how well the little balls stayed intact since they would not have been baked onto the sheet so firmly…. which would have improved cleanup time as well.

Amanda - Rolls 1

Pros:

We all had fun making these. The kids were excited and so was I! Such a simple idea and very kid friendly.

Cons:

They didn’t turn out as lovely as Allie’s. In fact my kids kind of picked at the gooey center (mine did not turn into magical syrup like hers’ either) and then asked if they HAD to eat them.

Amanda - Rolls 2

Conclusion:

Not a winner in the taste category but they really were fun to bake. I don’t know that I would make these again in this method but might consider adding a bit of chocolate and mini marshmallows for a s’mores-like knock off. Pretty sure I could get everyone on board with that idea!

 

 

Reviewer #3 – Sarah

Mission: To make a yummy treat for the kids…oh and me!

 

Details:

I had all of these ingredients on-hand, which made this recipe even easier from the get-go – I love when that happens!

  • I melted the butter in a glass dish, got the cinnamon sugar mix ready, put the marshmallows in a bowl and started prepping these. I have a silly phobia of things that “pop”, such as balloons, fireworks, guns AND crescent roll tubes…so I secretly hate using these. My husband has a good time making fun of me for this fear of mine. But, I power through opening the tube and forge ahead.
  • Anyway, once I was all set up, the process of making the resurrection rolls was very quick and easy. Outside of getting my hands coated in butter and sugar, it was a smooth process.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Make sure to tightly secure the crescent roll around the marshmallow to avoid having it spilling out the sides as mine did. It ended up being messy and not as cute as they should have been once baked.

Sarah - Rolls 1

Pros:

Minimal ingredients and delicious!

Cons:

A bit messy to create, and if you didn’t secure them tightly enough, messy to get them off the cookie sheet.

Sarah - Rolls 2

Conclusion:

A yummy treat to nosh on for this Easter!

 

 

Reviewer #4 – Janet

Mission:  I was hesitant with this project at first. It was definitely something I personally wouldn’t have picked out to try.

 

Details:

  • I got the marshmallows and crescent rolls at the grocery store and had everything else on had.
  • It was really easy to put together!

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Definitely put some effort into pinching the dough closed, I didn’t do this very well and as you can see, melted marshmallow all over the pan!

These are tastiest right out of the oven, don’t let them cool before eating because they get hard and very sticky.

Janet - Rolls 1

Pros:

These tasted really good!

Cons:

Sticky melted marshmallows all over the cooking pan. Made it difficult to get the rolls off the pan without pulling them apart!

Janet - Rolls 2

Conclusion:

These turned out okay, but I don’t know if it is something that I would make again. The story on the blog is really sweet and would be fun to tell to kids while making the rolls.

 

 Rolls Conclusion

 

The lovely Resurrection Rolls and their photo by Eat at Allie’s


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WHAT?!  You heard us!  Pumpkin Scones, a la StarbucksWe Heart Food has shared with us the stuff that legends are made of.

Be prepared to be in high demand for every brunch, shower, birthday party, conference, book club… you will hold the key!

 

Please click here to visit We Heart Food and see the instructions that we followed!

 

 

Reviewer #1 – Amanda

Mission: To bake something that I won’t consume the entire pan of upon completion. Major fail for me here which means these really were WTFOMG good!

 

Details:

  • I did not have half and half so I used ½ heavy cream and ½ whole milk, thanks to my kiddos.
  • Instead of using a fork to mix the butter into the dry ingredients I used a Pastry Cutter. So easy to get it all mixed in this way with a lot less effort.
  • To mix the dry ingredients with the wet, I started off using a wooden spoon but quickly realized I should have just used my KitchenAid. So I dumped it into the metal bowl and within a few seconds it was mixed perfectly. Sometimes I am pretty wise.
  • Also, I included testers of the 5 and under age group. HUGE success with that target market (not too shabby with the 30+ age group either).

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Use a mixer if you have one instead of your own brawn. Totally worth the end result with no sweat involved.

I decided that I would cut my scones even smaller since I knew kids would be consuming them. I didn’t get a chance to count them (that is how quickly they were eaten) but I dare say you can get nearly 2 dozen out of this recipe.

Pros:

UM seriously tasty and so appropriate for fall. Scones initially made me a little intimidated but these really were pretty simple and so worth making.

Cons:

I ATE TOO MANY. That is all.

Conclusion:

I will definitely be making these again. It would be fun for a Thanksgiving brunch or even around Christmas time.

 

 

Reviewer #2 – Sheri

Mission:  I have never in my life made scones. They’re a treat I recently discovered that I absolutely love; I’m just hoping I can do it. At least it’s not a dough that requires yeast, that would increase my chances of failure. My husband is not a huge pumpkin fan and if I can impress him with these I will consider this a success.

Details:

The instructions from We Heart Food seemed quite easy.

I finally got to use that little contraption my kids are always asking about, the Pastry Cutter. I don’t bake much so I’ve never used it before. It worked like a charm.

I also got to use the dough hook that came with my KitchenAid mixer. I’ve always been more of a cook than a baker.

The combination of the cinnamon, clove, ginger, and nutmeg was phenomenal.

My dough was rather sticky but I was able to get it rolled out into a 1-inch thick slab by just using my hands. As far as cutting the dough, the directions didn’t seem right or I read them wrong so I created my own way which worked great.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

The frosting: follow the instructions perfectly. You don’t want it too runny because it will slide right off the scones. The second glaze needs to be a little thicker than the first for a reason…it blends all together if it’s not.

Pros:

Really easy and beyond delicious!!

Cons:

Me and confection sugar glaze have had a battle with each other since my elementary school days, but I FINALLY got it right this time!

Conclusion:

These are definitely a winner! My husband came downstairs asking what smelled so awesome. When I told him they were “pumpkin” scones he looked a little bit disappointed. That was until he ate one. He too exclaimed, “Oh My God!” followed by an obscene word and an “awesome!”

The kids had them for breakfast this morning and couldn’t believe I really made them. I’m taking the compliments as a success. Now I need to go see if they left me any.

 

 

Reviewer #3 – Maren

Mission: After laughing hysterically reading the post by Chris and Lisa of We Heart Food, I was pumped to make these scones! I have a scone recipe that is my old standby, but am always looking for tasty new flavors like pumpkin!  Mmmm!

Details:

I super stuck with the program on this recipe. I even leveled off my cups and spoons with the back of a knife!

I used a really handy trick for the drizzled icing.  Pour your icing into a baggie and snip off a teensy bit of the corner!  Instant pastry bag!

Tips & Tricks Learned:

The next time I make these, I think that I’ll try using my Pastry Cutter and Hamilton Beach Hand Mixer which I LOVE! I would just like to see the difference in texture.

I floured the crap out of this dough, as it was a little sticky to roll out while still being able to pick them up to place on the baking sheet.  The texture wasn’t negatively affected, and the scones were a perfect, delicate baked consistency when done!  A little lighter and fluffier than your average heavy, dense scone, which I liked!

Careful that you don’t go overboard though.  There were a couple of scones that had excess flour on them and the first layer of icing didn’t want to adhere to those areas.

Cutting the scones… um, I somehow failed this part of the scone baking process. I just ate the stupid looking ones first.  Problem solved!

Pros:

Holy S#!T these ARE amazing!  I feel so proud of myself!

I feel like freaking Julia Child, minus the Julia Child voice {said with the Julia Child voice}

The drizzled icing has a strong presence of clove that really emphasizes the pumpkin flavor!  It is PERFECT!

Cons:

Apparently cutting 1 rectangle into 12 triangles is too complicated for me.

Conclusion:

I LOVE WTFOMG SCONES!!!  I cannot wait for my next chance to make these incredible treats to share! I want to show off this incredible recipe that practically turns me into Martha’s protégé!  I also want to eat mass quantities of this treat so I will have to always make double batches… note to self!  I just want to shout it to the world!

 

 


The drool-worthy
Pumpkin Scones and their photo by We Heart Food


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One More Moore has shared her favorite recipe for Fruit Salsa with Cinnamon Chips.  Originally discovered at Allrecipes.com, this keeper has been in One More Moore‘s recipe book since!

Eager to munch on the seasons best fruit, we couldn’t test this recipe out fast enough!

Please click here to visit One More Moore and see the recipe that we followed!

 

 

Reviewer #1 – Mandy

Mission:  Get back into healthy eating with a yummy “treat” I can’t resist.
 

 

Details:

  • I followed the recipe as written minus the preserves as I forgot to pick that up at the grocery store.
  • Also, I didn’t get exact with the types of fruits they called for. Not a huge fan of kiwi so I substituted with others.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

It was super easy and delicious so I didn’t really have much to change or learn. Maybe use it as a way to use the fruit in your kitchen that is getting over ripe. It all does blend together and maybe gets a little mushy so it’s perfect for using up fruit!

Pros:

Easy. Tasty. Crowd Pleasing.

Even my dad who doesn’t really like anything said “it’s OK.” (That’s GOOD in his book!)

Cons:

I don’t really have any.

It was a tad sweet so you may not need to use the sugars to sweeten it even more… although I’m sure they help with the juice that develops.

Conclusion:

Make it! Now!

 

 

Reviewer #2 – Sheri

Mission: This twist on salsa looked sweet and refreshing. Something my kids would actually enjoy! I referred to the Annie’s Fruit Salsa recipe on Morgan Moore’s blog, One More Moore. Seven quick and easy ingredients and some dicing…I love dicing.
 

Details:

The ingredients:

  • 2 kiwi’s, peeled and diced
  • 2 apples, peeled, cored and diced
  • 8 oz. raspberries
  • 1 lb strawberries, diced
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 3 Tbsp preserves

A no-brainer recipe – dice and combine.

The cinnamon chips were also quite simple. Just cut up flour tortillas, sprinkle them with cinnamon and sugar, and bake them at 350° for about 10 minutes. Viola.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

I can’t stand the look of browning apples. Just one of those things that will turn me off from consuming this delicious treat, so I used a lemon to help preserve them.

Pros:

Easy and delicious, and you can vary it with the fruits you have on hand.

Cons:

None!

 

Conclusion:

This recipe was super easy…that’s because I like dicing. If you don’t like chopping, then it’s not for you.

A great little tid-bit; if you don’t have the time to make your own cinnamon chips (although I do recommend you do) store-bought cinnamon pitas work just great with this salsa. It was devoured quickly and made the perfect dish to bring to the summer BBQ.

 

 

Reviewer #3 – Amanda

Mission: To whip up a yummy and mostly healthy snack with fruit I already have (that was my mission anyway).
 
 

Details:

I will admit that as usual I am trying to be all sorts of lazy thrifty here and I wanted to use fruit I already had at home instead of going out to hunt down what was used in the original recipe.

My fruit list looked a little like this:

  • Kiwi
  • Raspberries
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Orange Marmalade (this I did buy)
  • I also halved the recipe because I know my kids are a bit picky and I didn’t want to end up having to eat the entire bowl myself! I was smart because of course they didn’t LOVE it. They tried it and ate a little but I mostly had to finish it. I tried to save it for the next day but the flavors got a little too intense.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

I think pinapple would have been a great addition and I would stick with a strawberry or raspberry marmalade because the orange had a slightly bitter taste which I am pretty sure turned my kids off. Apples (which I didn’t use) would have added a nice crunch.

Pros:

It was fairly easy and definitely pretty.

Cons:

Because I tried to deviate a little it wasn’t as good and some got wasted.

Conclusion:

I would definitely try this again though and change up some of the ingredients. Maybe also change my tasters to adults instead of finicky little ones.

 

The gorgeous shot of Fruit Salsa with Cinnamon Chips  captured by One More Moore


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The Curvy Carrot has shared a delicious recipe for Strawberry Bruschetta that looks as delicious as it is easy on the eyes!

Fresh ingredients like strawberries and basil, paired with rich goat cheese, balsamic vinegar and a crispy baguette! We had to try this one out!

 

Please click here to visit The Curvy Carrot and see the recipe that we followed!

 

Reviewer #1 – Amanda

Mission: Create a unique appetizer that is still family friendly.

 
 

Details:

  • I didn’t have a French baguette so I opted for cutting a couple of Ciabatta Rolls instead.
  • I also opted to leave the cracked pepper off in hopes that my family would actually try it. This was a smart move but when I make it again I will add the pepper. It would bring a nice bite to the dish.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Dice the strawberries small – per the instructions. It makes it easier to eat them. Also, let the balsamic and olive oil sit on the bread, cheese and topping before consuming.

Pros:

Pretty and SO tasty! It is a lovely combination of sweet and savory. Perfect pairing with wine!

Cons:

There really are none. I personally loved this dish and plan to make it again for people who can appreciate it as much as me (my family was as excited as I was about the dish but mainly that was because we had a LOT of food in addition to the appetizers on our table to consume).

Conclusion:

This is a fun way to bring sweet and savory together in one dish. Perfect for a dinner party and ideal for a night of wine and snacks. I will definitely be making this one again!
 
 

Reviewer #2 – Sheri

Mission: At first glance on Pinterest these things look delectable. A sweet take on the traditional bruschetta. I clicked on a gorgeous pin that initially to me to a fantastic food blog called Annie’s Eats.

The recipe itself looked simple, but to be honest it didn’t sound as delectable as I originally thought. Black pepper, olive oil, and basil with strawberries!? Let’s just say my husband and parents were giving me strange looks as I was preparing it.

Details:

  • First I sliced up a cup of strawberries and coated them with a tablespoon of sugar.
  • While I let the strawberries stand in the sugar I sliced the baguette.
  • Then it was assembly time. I spread the goat cheese on the baguette and then applied the strawberries and sprinkled them with some fresh ribbon-cut basil.
  • Lastly, it was time to drizzle the olive oil and balsamic vinegar over them and finish it off with some fresh ground black pepper.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Tips I am going to use the next time I make these:

a.)   Toast the baguettes a little. Spreading the goat cheese on soft bread was tough and I think a little bit of crunch might make them a little better.

b.)   Be cautious when “drizzling” the balsamic vinegar. I ended up dousing a few.

Pros:

They’re fast. They’re pretty. They taste surprisingly great.

Cons:

Trying to get someone to try them.

Conclusion:

As previously stated, these little appetizers looked fabulous but after reading the recipe I got a little bit nervous. My husband and parents were good sports and tried them…then we devoured the entire plate. They were fantastic.

The sugary strawberries were paired nicely with the balsamic vinegar, tangy goat cheese, and even the basil and ground black pepper. So yes, they are as good as they look and easy to assembly to boot.
 
 

Reviewer #3 – Sarah

Mission:  To try out this yummy sounding summer appetizer.

 

Details:

  • Baguette
  • Strawberries
  • Goat cheese
  • Basil
  • Olive Oil
  • Balsamic
  • Salt and pepper

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Pre-mix your olive oil and balsamic and just use a spoon to drizzle it over the strawberries on your bread/goat cheese mix.

Pros:

Easy and delicious.

Great way to use in-season fruits and herbs – I picked the basil fresh from my garden!

Awesome combination of savory and sweet.

Cons:

In my opinion, more of a gals-type appetizer. I don’t foresee many of the guys in my friends circle even giving this one a try.

Conclusion:

This appetizer was AMAZING! I was hosting for my book club (consisting of 10 gals) and made this as the appetizer and there were rave reviews! It was an easy one to prep and a delicious one to eat! And, on top of that – it is just beautiful to look at…great colors!

I’m pretty sure everyone at the book club requested this recipe.  I will be adding this one to my recipe box 🙂
 
 

Reviewer #4 – Mandy

Mission:  Find a unique twist on my usual garlic/tomato/basil bruschetta that I love to serve. It’s my “go-to” app.

 

Details:

  • I followed the recipe as written. It was super easy to follow and turned out fabulous!
  • I made the bruschetta again at a later date and forgot to drizzle the bruschetta with balsamic. It was good, but not as full-flavored as the first go-around.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Don’t skip or forget any of the ingredients as I explained above.

It helps to “fan” the strawberry slices on the bread. Helps with the messy eating.

Pros:

Pretty easy. As long as you have access to the ingredients, you’ll be fine.  I was in my hometown (a smaller town) and it took a little bit of digging to find goat cheese. It’s Wisconsin… land of cow cheese, I guess.

So, so yummy!! Everyone that I had try it (even the picky eaters) loved it.

It’s also a little unique. People would typically think of a bruschetta to include tomatoes, basil, etc. This is a unique spin on it that is really good!

Cons:

There aren’t many… maybe it can get a little messy? Probably not a passed-type of appetizer.

Also, so good that you can’t stop eating… goat cheese calories galore!!

Conclusion:

Yum. Yum. Yum. I think this is such a great, easy appetizer that is unique and delicious.
 
 

Reviewer #5 – Maren

Mission: Try out a new twist on my favorite hors d’oeuvre!

 

Details:

I followed The Curvy Carrot’s recipe to a T!  I didn’t forget anything or screw anything up!  So proud.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

My baguettes were pretty dinky; a little tough to fit the strawberries on.  However, they were the perfect size to shove in your mouth.  Next time I think I’ll get the standard two-biter size.

I mixed my balsamic vinegar and olive oil together first, then spooned over the strawberry topping.  I felt like a genius.

I found that the vinegar made the bruschetta slices a little soggy, so next time, I would either bake the slices to make them crispier, or use a balsamic reduction… leaning towards the reduction option because I LOVE balsamic vinegar!

Lastly, don’t go too thin on the goat cheese.  It really adds to the flavor!  My mom agreed.  In reference to a few that were a little light on the cheese she said, “Well, they’re not knocking my socks off, but that doesn’t mean that I won’t keep shoving them in my face.”  Haaha!

Pros:

Totally amazing!  Such a unique and yummy combination of flavors.

Easy to make + easy on the eyes!

This recipe is easy enough to make any night of the week, guests or not!

Cons:

None – seriously, these were great.

Conclusion:

They are so pretty and easy to prepare – I cannot wait to make this the next time we have guests!  My mom, husband and I couldn’t eat enough of these suckers!   We practically licked the plate.  I will recommend this tasty dish for years to come.
 
 

The lovely shot of Strawberry Bruschetta taken by The Curvy Carrot


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Six Sisters’ Stuff tempt us with a recipe for Chili’s Copycat Salsa!

Our mouths were watering just thinking about this delicious snack!

 

Please click here to visit Six Sisters’ Stuff and see the recipe that we followed!

 

Reviewer #1 – Maren

Mission:  I love Chili’s Salsa!  These instructions were super easy to follow.  I feel confident that even “College Maren” could have handled this recipe!  I did refer to the forwarding blog, Six Sisters’ Stuff, for more specific info on the jalapeno situation.

Details:

  • I wasn’t paying attention to the recipe and did not drain the tomatoes – ooops!  I think that this actually made the consistency looser though, which is what I was hoping for.  For my jalapenos, I used a full [4 oz] can of Ortega Japapenos, lightly drained.
  • The lime juice that I added was frozen ahead of time thanks to a pin that I saw on Pinterest!  That trick is great if you like to cook with lime juice, or add it to your drinks!  I actually used onion that I had chopped and froze a week or two earlier too.  I’m just discovering the miracle of “freezing.”

Tips & Tricks Learned:

The most important lesson learned from this experience, the ingredients absolutely DO NOT FIT into a Cuisinart Mini Prep.  I was too lazy to get out my full sized Cuisinart, and that was clearly the incorrect choice.

After my salsa explosion, I scooped out [and off the counter] half of the overflowing salsa and continued in half batches until I got a smooth, pureed consistency.  I then reflected upon how things would have gone differently had I just gotten out the G. D. Cuisinart.

Pros:

SUPER Easy and delicious!  Had some serious kick, but wasn’t too hot.  Works well in recipes and on it’s own.

Cons:

Requires a blender or food processor, both of which are heavy and in hard-to-get-at locations in my kitchen and therefore never get used.

Conclusion:

This salsa was ridiculously easy to make!  I fed it to my salsa-loving husband and he said, “It tastes like chili.  It’s good.”  Translation, “I taste the cumin.  I like it.”

Don’t be scared by his comment!  We partake in a chili cook-off with our college friends each fall.  In an overly competitive panic to submit the BEST chili, it is not uncommon for me to make several different kinds in the month preceding the event and feed them to my husband until he can hardly stand hearing the word “chili.”  Therefore, as we approach our fourth year, my husband has eaten more cumin…I mean chili, than the average Joe.  I didn’t think that it was overly cumin-y at all.

Since it’s just my honey and me in our home, I froze half of the salsa for another day!  Thawed it out and used it to make some chicken – it was great!  I also like knowing that there isn’t any weird shit in it that I don’t know about.  Love this salsa!

 

 

Reviewer #2 – Sheri

Mission:  I’ve spent many wonderful evenings catching up with girlfriends over a bowl of chips, Chili’s Salsa, and iced-cold Coronas. Now we all have kids and our get togethers are rare occasions. How great would it be to invite the girls over for some Copycat Chili’s salsa and chat time?

I referred to the Six Sisters’ Stuff blog for a copycat recipe, and it looked surprisingly easy.

Details:

I was at first a little saddened that there would be very limited chopping or dicing, and no fresh ingredients, but then again the recipe was SUPER easy and I had an entire batch of salsa done and to the table in five minutes. You literally just put the ingredients into a blender or food processor and press the button. It’s ridiculously simple.

I chose to use the blender because my food processor is too small. I tossed in the whole tomatoes, canned jalapenos, and onion. I added the salt, sugar, cumin, and lime juice then just hit the button briefly. DONE.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

1.) Wash your hands immediately after touching jalapenos. Do. Not. Touch. Your. Eyes!

2.) A blender might not be the right choice. Complete puree. You would have thought I used tomato sauce instead of whole tomatoes.

Pros:

This can be put together so fast! So, so fast. You can have this all done and cleaned up in a matter of ten minutes. The flavor is pretty darn close to Chili’s salsa.

Cons:

It is definitely on the soupy puree side, and I prefer a chunky salsa. I don’t recall Chili’s salsa being so soup like.

 

Conclusion:

If you can use a can-opener and press a button YOU can make this salsa. I personally thought there was a little more cumin than I remember Chili’s salsa tasting like. I would adjust that a bit next time. I also don’t remember Chili’s salsa being so soupy, but that was most likely my mistake for using the blender. I’ll just have to add some ice and vodka and have a spicy bloody mary instead.

 

 

The lovely photo of Chili’s Copycat Salsa taken by Six Sisters’ Stuff


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