In the Kitchen: Cheesecake and Chicken Wings sorta

So, my kitchen is always a disaster area. It’s the one place we can’t seem to keep up on in our house. The biggest problem with keeping it nice and picturesque is that I like to cook. Like all the time. For no reason. Oh, and I stress bake. Like some people drink or smoke, only there’s a cake waiting to be eaten once I’m done. So, I thought I could share some of my yummy finds here.

This weekend we had two “snackworthy” events – the triumphant return and glorious start of the 12th doctor on Doctor Who and our fantasy football draft. So, I wanted to make things we could munch on while we battled aliens as well as were able to eat without interfering with our mouse clicking. So, I made three different things (because I love new recipes).

1. No Bake Raspberry Cheesecake Bites

Can you say – oh mah gawd? EB latches on to me as soon as she sees me pull one out of the freezer. Maisy loves them because my crazy dog is obsessed with cream cheese. So, these two all over me demanding I share. And, Josh, well, he doesn’t like raspberries. But he likes these.

I love cheesecake and I love no bake recipes so I was sold as soon as I found it. The recipe is below on the original website I used, and, to the woman who created this recipe, I thank you. The only thing I did that was different from her instructions was that I used an ice cream scoop to get the frozen mix out of the bowl and into ball shapes. They came out much prettier that way.

I love that they’re small and easy to grab. You can eat one and get your cheesecake fill without feeling like a total fat kid. You can also make them various sizes too. I made some smaller ones for EB because I knew she’s make a mess with a bigger one.

http://thissillygirlslife.com/2014/04/no-bake-raspberry-cheesecake-bites/
http://thissillygirlslife.com/2014/04/no-bake-raspberry-cheesecake-bites/

2. Buffalo Chicken Dip

I love dips. If you can put it on a chip, bagel piece, pretzel, or graham cracker, I’m sold. And I love chicken wings. But chicken wings take forever to make, and they get messy. Enter the wing dip!

Josh doesn’t eat chicken on the bone anyways. So this was really perfect for us.

Here’s the recipe: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/buffalo-chicken-dip/

I did half of what the recipe calls for for just the two of us and it was enough for both of us to take leftovers for lunch the next day. I didn’t slow cook ours after it was all mixed. I popped it into a 350 degree oven until was all bubbly and delicious. The sauce I used (and love) is Frank’s Red Hot Buffalo Wings Sauce. It taste more chicken wingy to me than the plain Red Hot. There are a lot of recipes for this dip out there, but I’ve found I like this one best because of the portions of the ingredients. I also don’t like blue cheese and a lot of recipes call for that instead of the ranch. We eat ours on tortilla chips, but crackers work just as well.

3. Reese Puffs

So, I was on pintrest (as I tend to be) and realized that, basically, if you can stuff it into a crescent roll, somewhere, someone has. And I saw snickers wrapped and baked inside of them, and I decided to try it with Reese cups.

All I did was put the Reese cups in the fridge to get cold first. Cut them each in half and then wrap a half up in the crescent dough. I baked according the packaging and sprinkled with powder sugar when done.

Reese cups are Josh’s favorite so he was pretty happy with them. photo 1 photo 2

I’m currently noshing on my buffalo chicken dip. So, I’m gonna get back to that. 🙂

Advertisements

The sad story of the chocolate cake(s)

(Please note: this was written at 4am on a Wednesday. My baby had made enough noise to wake me up but not actually need me and I failed to return to sleep. The content of this blog is written in a state of slapstick insomnia. Enjoy.)

This a sad story about chocolate cake. The chocolate cake isn’t the sad part though. Goodness, no. There is nothing sad about chocolate cake. Chocolate cake is all that is good in the world.

::trumpets sound, angels sing, other enthusiastic imagery::

20131120-043806.jpg

This sad story starts a few weeks ago. Or maybe it was last week. It’s hard to tell. I’m unemployed so days don’t really matter much. Anyways, not so long ago, I discovered the show Cake Boss on netflix. That’s when the trouble began. As it is with Netflix, I found a show and started watching it. All of it. Hours upon hours of back to back cake. It brought on the strong urge to eat cake. Oh and remember how I said in unemployed? This urge appeared during a non paycheck week. So, I got no cake.

I tried to make due. I scoured the interwebs for cake in a mug recipes, but each one let me down. Too rubbery. Too wet. Too bland. Nothing like actual cake. So my desire grew. And, of course, I continued to watch Cake Boss because one does not stop watching a show on Netflix until the whole series has been seen. So, on stroke of luck, I discovered $30 cash hidden in an almost 10 year old birthday card before pay day. And, yes, cake was the first thing on my mind. And yes, I barely let Josh finish putting the groceries away before I started breaking eggs and mixing shit in my kitchen. Then I had to wait. See my oven doesn’t work. It hasn’t for over a year. We use it as a nice giant floor weight. That’s like a paperweight only it keeps the floor from flying away. We make up for this lack of useful oven by using a toaster oven that has super awesome normal oven powers. It’s small and doesn’t bake evenly. So I had to make a choice: normally I would just make a super thick cake and put all the batter in a single 8×8 pan and let the edges burn and the inside be kinda raw. That’s how I roll. Plus my husband eats anything I bake for him. So that’s not a concern if I’m just baking for fun. This cake though was for me. It had to be good. So I opted to do the correct two pans and had to cook each one by itself. 30 minutes each. Then cooling time. It was agony after having to wait for what felt like an eternity for my cake.

They came out of the oven and, luckily (I use this word ironically), my toddler decided to do something destructive in the living room. It served as enough distraction that my cakes had both cooled enough to frost by the time I was able to return to them. I layered them and frosted them and, because of my Cake Boss obsession, I even pulled out an icing tip and added a border and design. This cake was to be my masterpiece. I had waited long enough for it. It deserved the love. I added some sprinkles because sprinkles make life better and viola! It was ready. And I dove it. I had a MASSIVE piece of chocolate cake that my child screamed to have some of. But I didn’t share. I made daddy share. This was all mine. I had waited so long and it ended up being so worth it. (Authors note: yes, I realize how much of a fat kid I am. I just love cake that much) This cake lived up to the hype in my head. I use a box mix because 1) I’m lazy and because 2) it is expensive to buy all the things you need for a homemade cake. But I modified it. I adjusted the recipe to make it less boxlike and more scratchmadelike. And it was magnificent.

Further proof of its amazingness: I ate some the next day. I usually bake and then eat the baked good while it’s fresh and then Josh eats the rest for like a week. I had cake for breakfast and after dinner. We finished that cake in 3 days. And then, we were sad.

So, Monday night the cake was gone. I mourned. I had to eat Cheerios for breakfast on Tuesday and who wants that? But Josh gets paid on Tuesdays. So, here’s the sad part of the story. By Tuesday night there was another chocolate cake sitting on our counter looking identical to the one we had just destroyed, and I honestly don’t think it’s going to live to see Friday.

20131120-043919.jpg (PS: yes, I’m aware it’s the same picture as the first cake. I just added a filter and hoped you wouldn’t notice. Truth is: I was too much of a fat kid to take a picture of the second cake before I cut it to pieces. But, trust me, it looks just like this.)

I guess it isn’t much of a sad story at all. Guess it’s all how you look at it. I look at it as more chocolate cake. It’s sad if you look at it as two grown adults who are unable to control their need to stuff their faces with yummy sugary goodness. But I choose not look at it that way.

Btw, it’ll be the last chocolate cake for a while. The second one, that is. I’m going to refrain from my need for dessert (my kryptonite if you failed to notice). Plus, I’ll be baking Christmas cookies with my mom in probably about 2 weeks. 😉

So this a tale of two cakes. It was a delicious tale. It was a sad tale. It’s made me very hungry. I’m going to wait until the sun comes up before I go eat another piece though. I think I can manage that at least.