Easter Parade

luckkywilliamson1's Easter album on Photobucket

Friday, August 31, 2012

WICKED And Cookies To Match

the Broadway Musical 
was in town and we were lucky enough to get great

I was able to see the original cast years ago with
Kristin Chenoweth in New York and loved it.

My 18 year old nephew did some theater when he
was younger and has always wanted to see Wicked
so I gave him a ticket for his graduation present along
with his parents.  It was so fun to watch him enjoy 
for the first time.  It was also his first Broadway show.

I thought I should bring back these fun
  Melting Wicked Witch
cookies in honor of Wicked and with Halloween coming up
before you know it.  

You can get step by step instructions

Don't these look 
(But they taste so NICE.)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Circus Animal Cookie Ice Cream

Are you as tempted by Circus Animal Cookies as I am?
I was grocery shopping and saw a package of 
these pretty pink and white critters.  I usually don't buy
them because I can't leave them alone, but we were
going to Lake Powell and the kids do like a lot of treats.

Then I got inspiration to try the Circus Animal Cookies out
in a batch of ice cream, so I surreptitiously hid them in 
the back of the pantry so they wouldn't be consumed.

It turned out to be a great ice cream flavor.

As a matter of fact, most of it had been eaten out
of the freezer before it was time for dessert, so I
was lucky to get any photos.

Circus Animal Cookie Ice Cream
(This recipe has been sized for a 2 Qt. ice cream maker, double it if you want more.)

1 1/4 C. white sugar
equivalent of 4 pasteurized eggs (Egg Beaters)
1/2 C. marshmallow cream
2 C. heavy whipping Cream
1 C. milk
2 C. crushed Mother's Circus Animal Cookies
red food coloring
additional Circus Animal Cookies

In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugar, Egg Beaters and marshmallow
cream on low.  Then stir in the whipping cream and milk.  Add a few
drops of red food coloring to make it pink if desired. 

Place the cream mixture in your ice cream freezer container.  

I love the Cuisinart 2 Quart Ice Cream freezer because it is big
enough to really get the ice cream frozen.

When ice cream is almost frozen, sprinkle in half of the crushed cookies.
Let the ice cream freezer mix them in.  When it is frozen as hard as
the freezer can make it, remove the paddle and hand stir the remaining
cookies into the frozen ice cream, being sure to stir all the way to 
the bottom.  Add additional crushed cookies if desired.

Place the ice cream in the freezer several hours until solid.

Garnish with additional cookies.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Loaded Potato Chips

Do you love to watch Diners Drive Ins and Dives like I do
starring Guy Fieri?
That has to be one of the most addictive AND FATTENING
shows on television but I just love it and would love to go
to every restaurant they feature.

I saw an episode the other day where they made their own
potato chips and loaded them with all kinds of goodies
so while we were at Lake Powell this last week we
gave this recipe a try.

I tried several ways to slice my potatoes.  I wanted them thin and
crisp so they weren't soggy yucky homemade chips.

The food processor didn't work - way too thick.
The grater didn't work - even thicker.
A knife didn't work - too uneven.

Finally I used the vegetable peeler and it made wonderful
thin pieces.  On another episode of Diners Drive Ins and Dives
I saw them add vinegar to the water the potatoes were soaking
in.  The restaurant owner said that it helped take out the
extra starch so I added about 2 T. of vinegar (all I had was
apple cider vinegar, but it worked great).  I rinsed them and
filled the pan with water again and then drained and patted them dry.

Meanwhile I was heating the oil up to 375 in two pots.  I love to
use my electric fondue pots and I wanted them all done at the
same time.  I used about 5-6 medium sized russet potatoes.

Cook until they turn golden. 

(Aren't they just beautiful, all golden and curly?  They were perfectly
thin and crisp.) 

Take one out, drain and make 
sure it is crisp.  Then remove all of the chips and drain them.
While they are hot top them with BBQ sauce, shredded sharp
cheddar cheese, crumbled bacon and green onion.

We started to eat them and then realized we were missing something
the Ranch Dressing!  We had BYU ranch dressing (the best -
they make it at the college and sell it on campus)
but if you can't get that follow my suggestions for great
Ranch Dressing (using the mix and doctoring it up a bit.)

Ahh, that's better.  They disappeared almost instantly.  

When we ran out, we had some frozen french fries that we
deep fried and did the same toppings.  They were great too.

One of my only memories of my dad cooking was on a few Sunday
nights he made homemade potato chips.  That was such a tender
memory for me.  I think it is so wonderful when men help cook and
I never forgot my dad making homemade chips.  

These are a big upgrade from his.  Create some memories by
making some for your family.

Next time I am adding some jalapenos to my plate.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream

We try a different kind of ice cream almost every week during
the summer.

Today I decided to use some Nestle's Chocolate Chip Cookie
refrigerated dough that I had on hand.  It is the kind that comes
in a square package and is pre-cut into small squares.  It is
perfect for cookie dough ice cream.

I also stirred in some Magic Shell at the end of the ice cream
processing time so that there were chocolate chips throughout.

The cookie dough itself I added after the ice cream was
done processing so that it would stay in chunks.  I just
broke their squares up by hand and hand stirred them in
before placing the completed ice cream back in the freezer.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream

3/4 C. brown sugar, packed
1/2 C. white sugar
Egg Beaters, equivalent of 4 eggs
1/2 C. marshmallow cream
1 T. vanilla flavoring
2 C. heavy cream
1 C. milk

Nestle's Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, refrigerated
(I used half of a 16 oz. package.)
Magic Shell

In your mixing bowl mix the sugars, the Egg Beaters, the
marshmallow cream and the flavoring.  Beat on low until
almost smooth.  Your marshmallow cream will not completely
mix in and that is fine.  Then stir in the cream and milk.

Pour into prepared ice cream freezer.  I love the 2 Quart
Cuisinart Ice Cream Freezer.  It has enough freezing fluid
to make your ice cream freeze really well and it makes 
enough for a family.  It must be frozen solid for 24 hours
for great results.

It takes about 30-40 minutes to freeze the batch of ice cream.

As the batch is finished freezing squeeze in some Magic Shell.
The Magic Shell will quickly freeze and as it stirs in, it will
create small chocolate chips.  

Remove paddle and then stir in your broken up cookie dough.

Replace the ice cream in the freezer for several hours until the
ice cream is hard enough to scoop.

Super Yum!!!

(The Nestle company uses pasteurized eggs in their cookie dough
so I haven't worried about eating it uncooked.  You can decide
for yourself.)

Posting with
On The Menu Monday
Foodie Friday

Monday, August 13, 2012

Halibut in Cedar Grilling Papers

Fresh halibut from Alaska was delivered to our house
by our friend Wally who had just gone on a fishing 
trip there.  I had purchased these cedar papers a while
ago and decided the halibut was the perfect way to 
give them a try.

The cedar is cut so thin that after 10 minutes of soaking you can
easily wrap it around a narrow piece of fish and then tie it off
with the enclosed string.  I decided to top mine with olive oil,
lemon pepper, red onion and cilantro.

The smell of the smoking wood was incredible and they 
didn't catch on fire like my planks have done, they just
smoked.  We cooked them about 5 - 7 minutes on each
side depending on the size of the filet.

It definitely made some of the most moist halibut I have ever tried.

We served them in fish tacos.  I am definitely returning to the
grocery store to get some more of these.
They can be found in the grilling departments of some
grocery stores, Home Depot and online.
They also suggest soaking your papers in juice for
added flavor.  We just used water.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

French Berry Pie

A beautiful basket of strawberries just called out to me to
create a luscious pie for them to top.

Remember my French Peach Pie? 

 I decided I would make
it topped with fresh strawberries and pie cherries.

This is such an easy and fabulous pie to make.

It goes together in minutes and always gets compliments.

French Berry Pie

1 can sweetened condensed milk
4 T. lemon juice
2 C. whipped cream or 2 C. Cool Whip
1 tsp. almond flavoring

9 inch pie crust, baked and cooled

2 C. sliced strawberries
1 can pie cherries

In a large bowl mix the sweetened condensed milk with the 
lemon juice adding 1 T. at a time.  Fold in the whipped cream
or Cool Whip (I used Cool Whip today to save on fat) and
the almond flavoring.  Pour the filling into the prepared pie
crust.  Place in fridge and let cool.

Just before serving gently stir together the fresh
strawberries and the cherries.  Top the pie with the
fruit.  Serve with a dollop of whipped cream.

I usually make this with a traditional baked pie crust but
today I made it with pre-made graham cracker crusts.  Either
work great, or make your own graham cracker crust.

Thanks for visiting Purple Chocolat Home today!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Spicy Grilled Salmon or Chicken with Grilled Peaches

When a main dish makes you want to sing between bites 
you know it is one you have to get the recipe for and 
this Bobby Flay Recipe certainly makes me want to 

My friend Tammy introduced me to this recipe on our 

I told you we loved to eat really well at Lake Powell.

Everyone was anxious for her to email the recipe.
Our friend Wally had just brought us over some
Red Sockeye Salmon that he had caught in Alaska.
I decided to make the recipe and try it on both the
salmon and the chicken.

It is one of those fabulous recipes that is so full of flavor, but so 
easy to make.  I have seen grilled peaches for ages but have never
made them - don't put it off - give it a try this week!!

Spicy Grilled Chicken or Salmon with Grilled Peaches
(Slight adaptation of Bobby Flay's 

2 C. peach preserves
1 T. finely chopped garlic
3 T. olive oil
2 T. soy sauce
1 T. Dijon mustard
1 small jalapeno or serrano chili finely chopped

boneless chicken breasts or salmon filets
fresh peach halves - one per person
toasted, chopped pecans

1/3 C. soy sauce
1/3 C. vegetable oil
1/3 C. maple syrup
1 clove garlic, crushed

Mix the marinade and marinate the meat for 30 minutes. 
( I changed the recipe and added the marinade.)

Meanwhile prepare the spicy peach sauce by mixing 
all of the ingredients together.

Heat grill.  Grill chicken or salmon about 5 minutes per side.
Brush peach glaze on both sides and continue to grill until

Brush the cut side of the peach halves with the peach glaze
and place cut side down on grill for about 2 minutes.  Turn
over and spoon more glaze onto cut side.  Cook about 3-4 
minutes more or until soft.  

Serve the meat with additional glaze poured over
and the grilled peaches.  Top both with toasted pecans.
(I added the pecans too.  They give a nice nutty crunch.)

Even my non-fish lovers gobbled down the salmon.  It was the reddest
salmon I had ever seen and was perfect with the glaze, peaches and pecans.

The peaches would be fabulous as a side dish too.

This is me rappelling down a cliff at Lake Powell.
The first step off the top is the scariest.
We work up a big appetite here and it is fun to
have such great food.  So glad Tammy introduced us
to this great recipe.

I will be posting with
Foodie Friday
On The Menu Monday

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Lemonade Cake

Did you have a lemonade or candy stand as a child?
My children did for years and years and lemonade
just reminds me of summer.

I saw a yummy picture of this on Pinterest and had
saved it for the summer.  We have a lunch group
and during the summer we gather at my friend Barb's
pool.  We bring our children and now our grandchildren
and do pot luck for lunch so I decided the pool party was
the perfect place to try out the lemonade cake.

I popped the cake in the oven the night before and then sat
down and read the reviews.  The recipe came from
My Recipes.Com and is a Cooking Light recipe.

I quickly began to panic as half the reviews said they took one
bite and threw the whole cake out.  I started making a back-up
plan in my mind as to what I could whip up in the morning.

First let me say that as I read the recipe and it said to bake
the layers for 20 minutes, I knew that was the first big mistake.
Where I come from, a layered cake has to be baked around 30-35
minutes.  Many of the reviewers said their cakes fell.  Aha - not
enough cooking time.  

I set the timer for 30 minutes and checked it and it needed another
5 minutes.  It raised, it looked good, it smelled good, but how
to taste a little of it and not be embarrassed as I served it.

Reviewers didn't love the cream cheese frosting recipe either -
I wondered if that was because it was "light".  Now this I
could change as I hadn't made that yet.  So in the morning 
I made my own recipe for a lemony cream cheese frosting.
Then I decided to garnish it with crushed lemon drops and
that led to crushed lemon drops between each layer.

Since everyone in the lunch group knows
I am a food blogger,
I decided to take some photos at home, including a slice of
cake (the above photo).  That let me take a little snitch of the
cake and YES, I liked it.  It got to come to the pool with me.

Everyone there liked it too and they especially loved the crunch
of the lemon drops between layers.

Lemonade Cake
(I changed the recipe to create 3 - 8 inch layers.)

2 C. granulated sugar
9 T. soft butter
1 1/2 T. grated lemon rind
4 1/2 T. thawed lemonade concentrate
3 tsp. clear vanilla
3 large eggs
3 large egg whites
3 C. flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. salt
1 7/8 C. buttermilk

Heat the oven to 350.

In mixing bowl beat the first 5 ingredients until fluffy - for a full 5 min.
Add the eggs and egg whites one at a time, beating well between
each one.  Mix the dry ingredients in a separate bowl and stir
together with a whisk.  Beat the flour mix into the butter mix
alternately with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour.
Scrape the sides of the bowl often.

Prepare 3 - 8 inch pans by cutting out parchment paper to fit
the bottoms of the pans.  I don't grease my pans, just use parchment
paper.  This way the grease doesn't interfere with the cake rising
and you get nice flat layers.  Spoon the batter evenly into the
three pans.  Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick comes
out clean.  Let cool for 5-10 minutes, then run a knife around
the edge of the pan to release the cake from the pan.  Turn upside
down on a cooling rack.  Let cool completely.

10 oz. jar lemon curd
(I like Dickinson's or Trader Joe's.)
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
4 C. powdered sugar
pinch salt
1/2 C. crushed lemon drops.

In a large mixer bowl beat the lemon curd and the cream cheese until 
smooth.  Beat in the powdered sugar and salt.  Beat until smooth.
The frosting will be very soft at this point so place the bowl in 
the fridge for about 20 - 30 minutes to help it firm up.

Place a small amount of frosting on serving platter to
hold cake in place.  Place a layer on and frost the top, then
sprinkle some crushed lemon drops on.  Continue with the
remaining layers.  Finish by frosting the sides and top and
garnish with crushed lemon drops.  

I had these African daisies in my garden so I used them to
top the cake.

Summery goodness in every bite.

Whoa, look who swam up out of the deep to have a bite of cake
with us.  This is Mermaid Emmy.

 You can find her fun mermaid tail
She added her own tankini top.
You can also find the mono fin that goes inside by Googling
mermaid fin (around $30) and you could sew your own out of
sparkly swimsuit fabric. 
(We more mature ladies are toying with the idea of making
mermaid tails for ourselves! Now that would make a funny picture.) 

I will be posting with


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