Thursday, December 10, 2009

A Great Opportunity!

As you saw from my previous post, Picky Palate is one of my favorite blogs to follow.  It is actually the very first one I ever saw and I was HOOKED. 
So tonight I was checking in to see what was new and saw that the latest post has a link to the Kraft website for a really great opportunity to help feed the hungry this holiday season.  And a fun giveaway from Jenny at Picky Palate.  Check it out here

Holiday Treats

Well, I won't say that I have officially started my holiday baking, but I'm definitely looking into what I want to try this year.  And this world of food blogs has opened my eyes to so many new recipes.  I love it!  I visited Picky Palate this week and found this great recipe for Candy Cane Kiss Centered Brownies.  I have to admit I bombed my first round of these.  I know you're wondering how someone can mess up brownies from a box.  Well, I didn't let them finish baking all the way and I had a big, half-baked brownie mess on my hands.

I didn't want all the brownie pieces to go to waste so I decided to try something with them.  I melted Hersheys chocolate bars, mixed in the brownie pieces and a bag of mint M&Ms.  (If you haven't tried these M&Ms yet, you should.  They are sooo good!)

I rolled the batter in a mixture of powdered sugar and crushed candy canes and rolled it up in wax paper.  I let this cool in the refridgerator.
The result?  It turned out very delicious, but hard to cut.  I think I'll try it again - with a few changes.  Maybe I'll spread it into a thinner layer-and not let them cool all the way before I cut into them. 
So, in the end I crunched it up into smaller pieces and my husband loves it. 
Not such a bad mistake after all.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Italian Fruit Salad

So I'm guessing fresh fruit seems like a funny thing to talk about this time of year.  I know everybody's thinking about doing their holiday baking and grocery shopping for those big family gatherings and delicious meals.  I can hardly wait myself!
I was supposed to go to aChristmas party this weekend with friends - with an Italian theme.  I offered to bring a side dish and I found a very simple recipe for fresh fruit with a sweet glaze to pour over it.

Lots of beautiful berries, pineapple and grapes

A simple mixture of honey and orange juice to pour over the fruit

And voila!  A simple, sweet fruit salad
(I'm not sure what makes this Italian - I haven't visited there yet - but I'll trust the creator of this recipe knew what they were talking about when they named it Italian Fruit Salad)

Italian Fruit Salad

1/2 c. honey
1/3 c. orange liqueur - I used orange juice
1 pound strawberries, quartered
1/2 pound seedless grapes
1 large can mandarin oranges, drained
1 fresh pineapple cut into chunks
1/2 pint raspberries
1/2 pint blueberries
1/2 pint blackberries

In a small bowl, whisk together honey and fruit liqueur.  Wash fruit.  Add all fruit into a large serving bowl, add the dressing and toss gently.  Chill before serving