Top 2010 Warm Vanilla Sugar Recipes

2010 has been a great year. I graduated university, went to Europe for two months, and got my own apartment (that I share with my boyfriend and our kitty). Also, I started this blog. I started it simply because I wanted an easy way to share my recipes with friends and family, and somehow amazing readers like you have found me! Thank you so much for your comments this year. It’s been a blast :)

Here are my favorite recipes from 2010:

Five: Reese’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cake. I made this for my boyfriend for his birthday, and we ended up eating the whole thing within two days!

Four: Strawberry Banana Muffins. My favorite muffin recipe.

Three: Chocolate Chip Cookies. My favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe (the secret is the browned butter).

Two: Canadian Butter Tarts. A Canadian staple that tastes like heaven.

One: Butterscotch Pie. My Nanny’s recipe that has been my absolute favorite dessert since way before I could ever bake myself.

Happy 2011 Everyone!

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Christmas Baking – Chocolate n’ Peanut Butter Dreams

Here they are…my favorite Christmas treat. This is the bar that I reach for on the goodie plate every time. I simply can’t get enough of them. I got this recipe from a good friend last year, and have now made them about 11 times!! A tried and true amazingly delicious dessert.

Want to learn how to make them? Of course you do!! Let’s bake. Combine peanut butter and butter in a saucepan over medium heat.

Let it combine nicely. Take off the heat.

Add icing sugar and graham wafer crumbs and stir it up.

Place yummy mixture into a 9 x 9-inch pan.

Then get the chocolate ready. Melt chocolate chips and shortening together.

Pour the chocolate on top of the peanut butter base, and place in the fridge for about 2 hours.

Eat! Oh my these were good. Key word being “were”.


Chocolate, Peanut Butter Squares

Makes 16 large squares.

Ingredients:
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup butter
2 1/2 cups icing sugar
2 cups graham wafer crumbs
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 tbsp vegetable shortening

Directions:
1. Combine peanut butter and butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Melt completely.
2. Take off the heat and add icing sugar and graham crumbs, mix together. Place mixture into a 9 x 9-inch pan and smooth the surface.
3. Melt the chocolate and shortening together. Pour evenly over peanut butter base. Place pan in the fridge and wait for 2 hours.
4. Cut into 16 squares and enjoy!

Christmas Baking – Puppy Chow

This stuff looks strange.

I remember seeing this ugly snack for the first time. I was at a girls Secret Santa Christmas party and my friend brought it as her potluck treat. I thankfully accepted her contribution to the food table, eyeing the strange mixture of whatever-it-was as I placed it with the other food. I tried the snack to be polite, and then…I was HOOKED! Sure, this “Puppy Chow” isn’t anything to look at, but it’s tasty. It’s filled with peanut butter, chocolate and icing sugar and makes me a very happy girl. A very, very, happy girl.

To begin, melt PB and chocolate chips in a big pot on the stove. Once melted, take off the heat.

Put box of Crispix in a big bowl, and add melted chocolate and PB.

Stir everything together until Crispix is covered with the choco/PB mixture.

Pour into two large freezer bags.

Add icing sugar.

And now shake that mixture silly to “Jingle Bells”!

Put your freezer bags in the fridge or freezer to solidify the mixture, and then you’re all done! This is such a great gift. You can doll it up is a nice Christmas tin, or bag with a bow. It’s cheap, easy, tasty and fun!

Happy Holidays Everyone!

Puppy Chow recipe

Ingredients:
1 box “Crispix” cereal
2 cups milk chocolate chips
2 cups peanut butter
1 small bag icing sugar

Directions:
1. Melt PB and chocolate chips in a big pot on the stove.
2. Once melted, take off heat.
3. Put box of Crispix in a big bowl, and add melted chocolate and PB.
4. Stir everything together until Crispix is covered with the chocolate and PB mixture.
5. Pour into two large freezer bags, and then add icing sugar.
6. Shake until covered (however much icing sugar you feel you need).
7. Cool in fridge/freezer (I always freeze mine).

Christmas Baking – Butterscotch Marshmallow Squares

I don’t know why I don’t just pretend it’s Christmas every month. I’m having so much fun!! I wake up, turn on some good Christmas oldies (Tony Bennett’s “I’ve got my love to keep me warm” is on currently) and get to baking. It’s heaven in my kitchen every day. My hands smell like brown sugar and butter, and I have butterscotch on my cheek with no worries.

This recipe, is an old one from my Great Aunt. I remember several Christmas goodies that she made, but these Butterscotch squares were my favorite. If my six year old self would have known how easy these were, she would have been a butterball herself.

First add your butter to a saucepan over medium heat.

Add your butterscotch chips.

Add your peanut butter.

Let them melt together and then take your pot off of the heat. Let mixture cool down a little for about 8 minutes.

Get 2 cups of mini marshmallows ready and add them to the butterscotch mixture.

Mix together melted ingredients with marshmallows, and place in a 9 x 9-inch square pan. Cool in the refrigerator (about 3 hours).

When the butterscotch goodness is ready, cut it into 16 squares and enjoy.

Ingredients:
½ cup butter
1 cup peanut butter
2 small or 1 large pkgs of butterscotch chips
2 cups of mini marshmallows

Directions:
1. Melt butter, peanut butter, and butterscotch chips together in a saucepan over medium heat.
2. Mix together melted ingredients with marshmallows, and place into a 9 x 9-inch square pan.
3. Refrigerate for approximately 3 hours.
4. Cut into squares and enjoy! These will keep for up to a week in the fridge. You can freeze them too :)

Christmas Baking – Buckeyes

WARNING if you want to consume mass amounts of peanut butter and chocolate immediately this post is not for you. You must let the dough set for a couple of hours in the fridge before the chocolate dipping begins. Life is hard.

It’s Christmas baking time. I have been thinking and re-thinking my baking list non-stop this year. I’m. So. Excited!! Every post this month will be something from my Christmas baking list. The list I have contains easy recipes that I bake every year for the holidays, all of which are freezable. For my first post I thought I’d share my Buckeye recipe with you. This recipe comes from my sister’s Grandma (yes, my parents are divorced) who bakes up a storm every year.

To begin, grab some peanut butter (2 cups to be exact).

Put that peanut butter in a bowl along with 4 1/2 cups of icing sugar, a stick of butter, and 1 tsp of vanilla.

Mix all the ingredients together and put your bowl in the fridge. Yes, I switched bowls (this one was smaller for my fridge).

Now is the sad part – you have to wait to roll the peanut butter goodness into balls. I always make this recipe the night before the chocolate dipping, but if you like things done NOW, it’s ok! You can refrigerate the dough for 4 hours or so, and it is still fine. Once you have waited for your dough to cool, you can roll it into 1-inch balls. Set them on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and insert a toothpick into each ball.

Now you have to wait again. Really? Yes, really. You want perfect buckeyes remember?! Chill your balls (tee hee) in the freezer until hard, approximately 30 minutes. While the dough is in the freezer melt your chocolate chips and shortening over medium heat. Remove the pan from heat.

Dip balls in chocolate and place back on cookie sheet.

Refrigerate (again) until chocolate is set, approximately 2 hours. And now, the good part. Eat your heart out beautiful. You deserve it.



Grandma’s Buckeye’s
Makes 40 peanut butter balls

Ingredients:
Balls
2 cups peanut butter
4 1/2 cups icing sugar
½ cup (1 stick) butter
1 tsp vanilla

Chocolate dip
4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup shortening

Directions:
1. Mix together the “balls” ingredients, and refrigerate overnight, or for at least 4 hours.
2. Roll dough into 1-inch balls. Set them on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and insert a toothpick into each ball. Chill in freezer until hard, approximately 30 minutes.
3. Melt chocolate chips and shortening over medium heat. Remove the pan from heat. Dip balls in chocolate and place back on cookie sheet. Refrigerate until chocolate is set, approximately 2 hours.