Tidbit Times

Tiny Tidbits of my Time

Easter Peeps Cookies April 2, 2012

Filed under: Tasty Bits — tidbittimes @ 7:32 pm
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I found this cute little idea and recipe on The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle last spring.   I thought they were so adorable.  Since I found it too late in the spring,  Hobby Lobby was all out of the larger size bunny cookie cutters.  Well, this year I was on the ball and snatched one up as soon as the Easter aisle was filled!  Last year I was able to find the tiny Easter cookie cutters, so used those.

 

 

Here is what the cookie cutter looks like.  You need to remove the pink rubber piece and slightly squeeze the sides inward to make a more authentic peep shape.

 

Here is the other variety of cookie cutters we used besides the peeps.

 

Here is the sugar cookie recipe that I used from Sugarbelle.

 

Rolled Sugar Cookies

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon good quality vanilla extract

Parchment paper

Directions:

-In a medium bowl, stir together the flour and baking powder and set aside.

-In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  This should take about 3 minutes.

-Add the egg and vanilla and beat another minute or so.

-Add the flour mixture slowly.  (Be careful not to add too much at a time or you will have a snowstorm of flour.)

-Blend until all of the flour is incorporated and the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl.

-Take the dough out of the bowl and place it on a piece of parchment paper.

-Using your hands, knead the dough a few times.

-Place the dough in a large plastic (ziplock type) bag and refrigerate for about 2 hours.  If you want to speed up the chilling process, place the bag of dough in the freezer for about 20-30 minutes. Just don’t forget it in the freezer, or it will become to firm to work with (and then you’ll have to wait for it to thaw).

-When it’s almost time to remove the dough from the refrigerator (or freezer), preheat oven to 350 degrees (F).
-When the dough has chilled and is firm, take out about half of the dough, leaving the rest in the refrigerator (until your ready to work with it).

Roll with sheet of parchment paper over the dough.

Cut 1/3 inch thick. Chill in freezer/refrigerator for 3-5 min before baking

Bake for 8-10 minutes  about 30 cookies (2-2 ½ in)

 

*****

Will and I worked together to make the dough and cut out the cookies.  It was a fun mother-son activity for a Saturday.  He really enjoys baking and I’m amazed at how long he’ll keep with the task.  We are expecting a baby in June.  I thought it was so sweet that Will wanted to make some of the bunnies with babies in their tummy.  (Note pink peep cookie pictured above).  I think he’s ready for his little sister to arrive!

 

(Wow, please disregard our messy kitchen in this picture.  Lots of baking lately = lots of dirty dishes!)

 

Here is the recipe I used for the icing.  I made two batches of this recipe and divided each batch in half before coloring it. It was just about the perfect amount.  I used Wilton coloring paste for the food coloring to get the bright and vibrant colors (rose, leaf green, orange, lemon yellow and aqua blue).  I then sprinkled a coordinating color of sanding sugar over the top of each cookie.  I used chocolate (canned) frosting for the eyes and noses.

 

Sugar Cookie Icing

Ingredients

  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 teaspoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • assorted food coloring

Directions

  1. In a small bowl, stir together confectioners’ sugar and milk until smooth. Beat in corn syrup and almond extract until icing is smooth and glossy. If icing is too thick, add more corn syrup.
  2. Divide into separate bowls, and add food colorings to each to desired intensity. Dip cookies, or paint them with a brush.

Here is the finished plate of Easter cookies ready to take to our family gatherings!

 

St. Patrick’s Day Treats March 15, 2012

Filed under: Tasty Bits,Uncategorized — tidbittimes @ 2:22 pm
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These dipped Oreos with a little St. Patty’s Day feeling were super fast and easy to make. 

 

 

There are only 3 ingredients required:  Mint Oreos, White Almond Bark and Green Sprinkles.

 

 

We melted the almond bark in a mini crock pot so that it would stay warm and not harden in the middle of dipping.

 

 

Dip half of the Oreo cookie in the almond bark and place it on a piece of waxed paper.  Immediately sprinkle the part of the cookie dipped in almond bark with green sprinkles.  That’s it!  EASY, EASY!

 

 

***

 

 

These shamrock pretzels were very easy as well!

 

 

Again, all you need is 3 ingredients:  Mini Pretzels, Hershey Kisses and Mint M&Ms.

 

 

Heat your oven to 200 degrees.  Place the pretzels on a cookie sheet covered with waxed paper.  Place one Hershey’s Kiss on the top of each pretzel.  Put them in the oven until they are melted through. 

 

Immediately, place 3 mint M&Ms like the picture above (pushing the chocolate down).  I needed to put these in the refrigerator to help them set up quickly.

 Yummy, O’Yummy!

 

Banana Oatmeal Pancakes February 17, 2012

Filed under: Tasty Bits — tidbittimes @ 1:59 pm
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Sometimes I’m just in the mood for breakfast for supper.  One night supper was on my own, so I made up a batch of these yummy pancakes, since I figured the boys in my life wouldn’t be too hip on them (my little guy has never liked bananas).

I googled the recipe and found it on the Taste of Home website. 

Banana Oatmeal Pancakes

1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup old-fashioned oats

1 tablespoon sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 egg

1-1/3 cups milk

1 cup mashed ripe banana

2 tablespoons canola oil

Maple syrup

 

Mix the flour, oats, sugar, baking powder and cinnamon. Mix the egg, milk, banana and oil and combine it  with the dry ingredients just until moistened.

 

Pour batter into a hot, greased pan or griddle.  Turn the pancakes when bubbles form on top; cook until second side is golden brown. Serve with syrup.  Makes about 1 dozen.

 

 

 

 

Rolled Pickles January 31, 2012

Filed under: Tasty Bits — tidbittimes @ 9:33 pm
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So whenever I’m asked to bring an appetizer to share, I am “expected” to bring the rolled pickles.  I made this last weekend when we had friends and family over for our baby’s reveal cake party.  I made two jars of pickles this time and there wasn’t a single crumb left on the platter!  I was also asked (told) if I was going to make them for the Super Bowl this coming weekend again.  OF COURSE! 

 

You will need:

Whole Dill Pickles (2 jars)

Whipped Cream Cheese (1 tub)

Dried Beef (1/2 lb)

There are several methods you can use to make these pickles.  When I first started making these I spread the cream cheese on the pickle and then rolled it in the dried beef.  After a while a friend told me she spread the cream cheese on the dried beef and then rolled the pickle (genius!).  Well, for this batch of pickles I had to go back to my old method of spreading the cream cheese on the pickle, because the dried beef from the deli was too thin and shredded to be able to spread anything on it. 

 

Before spreading the cream cheese on either the pickle or meat, I dried the pickle with a paper towel and cut each end off the pickle.

 

 

Roll it up all nice and neat.  Sometimes you have to piece it together and perform a little surgery.  Last, cut the pickle into slices and place them on a tray. 

 

 

Oh, and by the way check out our reveal cake to find out whether we are having a boy or a girl this time around!

 

 

 

stART ~ Tacky the Penguin & some Family Fun! January 14, 2012

Filed under: StART Bits — tidbittimes @ 11:11 pm
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Our Family Fun group reconvened this week after the holidays.  We had our biggest crew yet and had so much fun doing activities about PENGUINS!  We’d like to share our fun with you!

 

 

For our stART book/project Amy read us “Tacky the Penguin” by Helen Lester and Lynn Munsinger.  The Tacky books are so cute.  This is the first in the series.  Tacky is a penguin who beats to his own drum.  In this story he tells how he saved the day when some hunters come to their land. 

 

 

For our art project we made penguins, of course.  I found the idea on Pintrest, which came from the blog Casa Camacho.  I had pre-cut all the pieces of the penguin (body/head, tummy, wings, beak and wiggly eyes).  The kids, along with the help of their parents, positioned the pieces on their penguin and then glued them on.  The last (and most fun) part of the project was making the penguin’s feet.  I think all the parents thought I was a little crazy to tackle this part of the project, but those kids did a fabulous job. (There was no paint on the tables, floor or chairs).  I had the kids place their hands in orange paint and put their handprints at the bottom of their penguin to make the feet. 

 

 

We had some more fun with penguins with these activities!

 

 

We played the Penguin Relay to burn off some energy.  The kids were divided into two teams (NOTE: it was not an easy task to get 9 preschool-aged kids into two lines! Much appreciation to all the preschool teachers out there!).  One at a time the kids would place a ball between their knees and waddle across the room and then run the ball back to the next person in line.  It was hilarious to watch!  I really should have taken a video of it. 

 

I’m a Little Penguin Song

(sung to the tun of I’m a Little Teapot)

I’m a little penguin round and fat

Here is my beak, here is my hat.

Winter days are coming, hear me shout.

“Please don’t toss my mittens out!”

 

I’m a little penguin black and white

Short and wobbly, an adorable sight

I can’t fly at all, but I love to swim

So I’ll waddle to the water and dive right in.

 

I’m a little penguin on the ice

I think cold is very nice

I can hop around first once, then twice

I think ice is very nice

 

 

For our last activity we made penguin cupcakes.  I found this idea on Pintrest, which came from Family Fun magazine.  I think they turned out really cute!  Start with a cupcake frosted with white frosting.  Next, the penguin head and wings are made from halves of  Keebler Grasshopper cookies.  The eyes are made from mini M&Ms dipped in frosting so they stick to the cookie.  Last, the beak and feet are made from a cut up orange slice. 

It was a fun time!

 

Chocolate Doughnuts December 28, 2011

Filed under: Tasty Bits — tidbittimes @ 9:57 pm
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Guess what I got for Christmas?  Yes, a doughnut pan!  We decided to give it a test run today!  They turned out pretty good, although Will decided he couldn’t eat his because he just wanted sprinkles — no chocolate (silly boy!). 

We used the recipe that came with the pan. 

Doughnut Recipe

2 cups flour

3/4 cup sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 cup milk

1 teaspoon salt

2 eggs (beaten)

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 tablespoon shortening, melted

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Lightly spray the doughnut pan with cooking oil.      

(Makes approximately 18 doughnuts — I halved the recipe this time)

In bowl mix together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.

  

   

Add shortening, eggs, milk and vanilla.  Last, add the nutmeg and cinnamon.

Beat until well blended.

 

 Fill each doughnut hole 2/3 full.  Bake 8 minutes or until tops spring back when lightly touched.  Cool and remove from pan.

 This time we just frosted them with chocolate frosting (from a can) and of course added sprinkles!

Next time we may try a glaze. 

 

 YUM!!!

 

Red Velvet Cake Balls December 7, 2011

Filed under: Tasty Bits — tidbittimes @ 2:59 pm
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I first tried this recipe last Christmas.  They seemed to be a big hit, so I wanted to give them another try this year.  We did some tweaking to the process to make them much easier to make.  Hope you will enjoy this recipe.

 

 

Red Velvet Cake Balls

1 Red Velvet Cake Mix

1 can Cream Cheese Frosting

White and Chocolate Almond Bark or Candi Quik

Sprinkles or other things to jazz them up

(Makes approximately 60 cake balls)

 

 

Bake the Red Velvet cake as instructed on the box.  After the cake has cooled, break/crumble it apart into a bowl.  Mix it together with the whole can of cream cheese frosting. 

 

 

This is what it will look like.

 

 

Using either your hands or a small cookie scoop, form your cake balls.  My mother-in-law came up with the genius idea of inserting a toothpick into each ball for easier dipping (this was a great change!).  I placed the cake balls into a cake pan lined with parchment paper so I could freeze them.  I did this first step one day, and the dipping a couple of days later.    Place the cake balls into the freeze so that they will chill for easier dipping.

 

 

The next genius idea came from my husband (this must run in the family).  He suggested to melt the almond bark in the microwave and then place it into a mini crock pot so keep it melted.  This was another great addition to the process.  Dip each frozen cake ball into white or chocolate almond bark, covering the whole thing.  Place them on waxed paper and to harden (remove the toothpick).  About half of the batch I sprinkled with Christmas-colored sprinkles after I placed them on the waxed paper.  The other half of the batch, I drizzled with the opposite color of almond bark . 

 

 

Ta-da!  Church women’s Christmas potluck and work cookie exchange here we come!

 

 

 
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