by amanda

Slow Cooker Cashew Chicken

April 17, 2014 in chicken, slow cooker by amanda

After years of hearing me talk about my weekly Chinese order, I have bad news for you.

I’m over Chinese.

It’s a sad moment because I have been obsessed with our local place’s cashew chicken since my husband’s last deployment.

I keep trying to talk myself back into loving it and actually went to my other Chinese food love, Panda Express (and took a work call while in the drive-thru because I keep things classy) the other day and it was just so blah. 

And now I’ve convinced myself that if I just go to PF Changs, I’ll be back in love with Chinese food and my life will return to normal.

(Normal = being able to acquire bad-for-you food without leaving your house)

I don’t know what’s wrong with me.

This Slow Cooker Cashew Chicken is less like the veggie-filled cashew chicken I love and more like the sweet and sour chicken that my kids love. All three of my boys loved it and argued over leftovers the next day.

It’s a really simple recipe and odds are, you have most of the ingredients on hand. If you are a sweet and sour person when it comes to Chinese food, you’ll probably dig it!

Two years ago: Orange Beef and Broccoli
Three years ago: Baked Seasoned Potato Wedges
Five years ago: Baked Brie

Slow Cooker Cashew Chicken

Ingredients

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size chunks
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tablespoon canola oil
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
4 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoon brown sugar
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup cashews

Instructions

  1. Combine flour and pepper in large Ziploc bag. Add chicken. Shake to coat with flour mixture.
  2. Heat oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Brown chicken about 2 minutes on each side.
  3. Place chicken in slow cooker.
  4. Combine soy sauce, vinegar, ketchup, sugar, garlic, ginger, and pepper flakes in small bowl; pour over chicken.
  5. Cook on low 4 - 5 hours. Add cashews and stir. Serve over rice.
http://fakeginger.com/2014/04/17/slow-cooker-cashew-chicken/

by amanda

Easter Marshmallow Bark

April 16, 2014 in holiday by amanda

My kids are obsessed with marshmallows. Obsessed.

And they’re in the baking aisle of the grocery store so I can’t even buy flour without hearing “MOM! LOOK! NEW MARSHMALLOWS! PINK MARSHMALLOWS! MARSHMALLOWS SHAPED LIKE COWS! LOOK!”

You can imagine how thrilled they were with bars that are literally just marshmallows covered in white chocolate. You guys. They went nuts.

They’re pastel and I topped them with bunny sprinkles so they’re perfect for Easter! I’m not really a huge fan of marshmallows but I won’t lie, I’ve considered putting a square of marshmallow bark between some graham crackers and having a solo microwave s’mores party.

One year ago: Cinnamon Twists
Two years ago: Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake
Three years ago: Caramel-Filled Brownies
Four years ago: Chocolate-Peanut Butter Biscotti

Easter Marshmallow Bark

Ingredients

1 (12 ounce) bag white chocolate chips
1 tablespoon shortening
3 cups mini rainbow marshmallows
Easter or Spring sprinkles

Instructions

  1. Line an 8x11-inch baking dish with parchment paper.
  2. Put white chocolate chips and shortening in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 1 minutes and then give it a good stir. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring after each one, until completely melted.
  3. Add marshmallows and stir to coat all the marshmallows. Work quickly or the marshmallows will start to melt!
  4. Pour the marshmallows into your prepared pan and use a rubber spatula to extend the marshmallows to all sides. Sprinkles on any sprinkles you want to use.
  5. Refrigerate until completely set, at least a couple hours. Cut into squares and bring to room temperature before serving.
http://fakeginger.com/2014/04/16/easter-marshmallow-bark/

by amanda

Carrot Cake Whoopie Pies

April 15, 2014 in cookie by amanda

Do you guys leave anything for the Easter Bunny?

I don’t remember leaving anything as a kid (maybe I did?) but my husband insists that he likes carrots and my oldest insists that he also likes hard-boiled eggs.

I’m hoping that maybe he’ll leave me a basket this year if I switch things up and leave these Carrot Cake Whoopie Pies for him instead of boring carrots and eggs.

If you are a carrot cake fan, you will love these whoopie pies. It’s basically just a rearranged carrot cake cupcake! They’re really good and for some reason, even though I know that it’s technically two tiny cakes stuffed with cream cheese frosting, I still feel like it’s just an innocent cookie and I don’t feel guilty eating more than one.

Two years ago: Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
Three years ago: Funfetti Blondies
Four years ago: Pugliese

Carrot Cake Whoopie Pies

from Cooking Light

Ingredients

2 cups shredded carrot
2/3 cup brown sugar, divided
1/4 cup butter, divided
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 teaspoon orange zest
3/4 teaspoon vanilla, divided
1 egg
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt, plus a pinch, divided
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
4 ounces cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon milk

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Combine shredded carrots and 3 tablespoons brown sugar in a bowl; toss to coat. Place carrot mixture in a fine mesh sieve; let stand for 10 minutes. Discard liquid.
  3. Microwave 2 tablespoons butter in a medium microwave-safe bowl until melted, about 45 seconds. Add oil, ring, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and egg. Whisk until well combined.
  4. In a separate large bowl, combined flour, remaining brown sugar (about 1/2 cup), cinnamon, salt, and baking soda; whisk together. Add carrot mixture and butter mixture; stir until everything is incorporated.
  5. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto prepared baking sheets. You should get 28 cookies. Gently pat dough down to form 2-inch circles.
  6. Bake for 11 - 13 minutes or until cookies are set. Let cool completely on wire rack.
  7. Combine cream cheese, remaining 2 tablespoons butter, remaining 1/4 teaspoon vanilla, and a pinch of salt in a medium bowl. Beat with a mixer at medium speed until fluffy. Add powdered sugar and milk; beat at a very low speed until combined.
  8. Spread about 1 tablespoon on flat side of 1 cookie, top with another cookie, flat side down. Repeat with remaining cookies and filling.
http://fakeginger.com/2014/04/15/carrot-cake-whoopie-pies/

by amanda

Dirt and Worms Chex Mix

April 14, 2014 in snack by amanda

How was your weekend?

We had the best of both worlds. On Saturday we were eating watermelon in the backyard while wearing shorts and then Sunday we watched snow fall all day long! It was very strange and pretty fun.

I’m assuming most of your had nice Spring weather so I wanted to share this Spring treat! I think it’s my favorite thing I’ve made in months.

It’s basically Chex cereal coated in chocolate pudding mix and then you stir in crushed up Oreos and gummy worms! I know it looks like it’s for the kids but I won’t lie, it hit all my weird cravings on Saturday night – sweet and crunchy, chocolate, sour, chewy. I mean, everything all in one cute little bucket!

And my kids went nuts for it, of course! They’re boys so they like anything gross and eating bugs and dirt was pretty exciting for them.

One year ago: Smothered Burritos
Two years ago: Sour Cream Coffee Cake
Three years ago: Slow Cooker Mac & Cheese
Four years ago: Guacamole

Dirt and Worms Chex Mix

adapted from Better Crocker

Ingredients

4 cups Chocolate Chex
1/4 cup butter
2 tablespoons chocolate pudding and filling mix
1 cup coarsely chopped Oreos
2 cups gummy worms

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 300F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with oil.
  2. Place cereal in a large mixing bowl. Set aside.
  3. Melt butter on very low heat (or in the microwave). Remove from heat and stir in pudding mix until pudding has dissolved. Pour over cereal and toss gently, making sure each piece of cereal is coated. Pour onto prepared baking sheet.
  4. Bake 15 minutes, stirring halfway through.
  5. Stir in Oreos and gummy worms. Spread mixture onto wax paper to cool completely before serving.
http://fakeginger.com/2014/04/14/dirt-worms-chex-mix/

 

by amanda

Peeps Nests

April 9, 2014 in holiday by amanda

I am in full-on Easter mode right now.

I wasn’t. Then this past weekend the Army post we live on had their Easter event and I mainly showed up because they promised an ice skating rink (and lied!) but after holding ALL THE CUTE BUNNIES at the petting zoo, I’m pretty excited to have the Easter Bunny visit us.

Plus, can we all agree that Easter has the best holiday candy? Cadbury eggs, Cadbury mini eggs, Cadbury white mini eggs…

Omg.

Anyway, this is the treat I was planning on sharing on Monday someone destroyed the bag of pretzels and the eggs. Better late than never though, right? I love these so much. They are basically white chocolate-covered pretzels with a Peeps chick on top – what’s not to love?

Two years ago: Cream-Filled Doughnut Muffins
Three years ago: Garlicky Crumb-Covered Broccoli

Peeps Nests

25 servings

Ingredients

1 24-ounce package white almond bark
1 10-ounce bag pretzel sticks
25 Peeps chicks
1 package egg-shaped candy

Instructions

  1. In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt white chips; stir until smooth. Set aside 1/2 cup for decorating.
  2. Add pretzel sticks to remaining chips; stir until coated. Scoop a small amount of mixture onto waxed paper; shape into a nest using two forks. Repeat, forming 25 nests. Dip bottom of Peep into reserved white chips; place in a nest. Add eggs to nests, securing with white chips. Repeat. Let stand until set.
http://fakeginger.com/2014/04/09/peeps-nests/

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