Category Archives: Holiday Specialties

Your Next Favorite Party Food: Beer-Braised Cocktail Sausages

Beer Braised Cocktail SausagesI don’t know if you caught my recent post about the awesome and totally fun party game, Personalogy, but if not, you should check it out!  As you know, any party needs great snacks so I tried out this fabulous recipe from Triple Slow Cooker Entertaining by Kathy Moore and Roxanne Wyss.  The book has over 100 recipes and even has 30 plans for parties.  I modified the recipe to fit my own tastes and greatly enjoyed it.  Hope you love it too!

 

 

 

 

Ingredients:

2 packages cocktail sausages

1/3 c packed brown sugar

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 cup Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce

1/2 c beer (I used Dos Equis)

3 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

Directions:

  1. Place sausages in one slow cooker stoneware.
  2. In a small bowl, combine all other ingredients and mix well.  Pour over sausages.
  3. Cook on low for 2-4 hours or on high for 1-2 hours.

I’d love to hear your modifications, thoughts and what you served it with!  Hope you enjoy it!

 

Originally posted 2016-06-13 07:36:00.

DIY Rainbow Treats

Not only are rainbows beautiful, they were sent as a promise from God.  These quick and simple little treats are perfect for Easter, March, or even Rainbow themed parties!

DIY Rainbow Treats: Quick & Simple

I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth. Genesis 9:13

On a recent trip to Sam’s Club, a demonstrator was making these adorable treats and they were so perfect, they had to be shared!  The entire month of March we see rainbows with a pot of gold at the end.  During Springtime, they are prevalent throughout Easter and frequently seen across the clouds in the sky.

Continue reading DIY Rainbow Treats

Cinnamon Sesame Roasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe

Screen Shot 2013-06-13 at 7.05.18 AM

With my new book, Osteoblasts to the Rescue, I had my chef and nutritionist friends email me their favorite bone-building, kid-friendly recipes.  If you purchase the book from Amazon or me, they can send me their receipt and I will email them the pdf ebook.

Thanks,
Heather
Ingredients

1 cups pumpkin seeds

1 tablespoon agave nectar

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon sesame seeds

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon sea salt

 

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

2. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients; gently toss to coat. Transfer pumpkin

seeds to a baking sheet.

3. Bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown; stirring occasionally.

4. Remove from oven; set aside for 10 minutes to cool.

5. Serve alone as a snack or as a topping for salads and whole grain recipes

 

Makes 4 servings

Amie Valpone, HHC, AADP

www.TheHealthyApple.com

 

A little bit more about Dr. Heather:

Dr. Heather Manley, who in 2001 received her medical degree from the National College of Naturopathic Medicine in Portland, Oregon, is a practicing physician whose primary interest is preventative healthcare for families. She is the author of the award winning Human Body Detectives, her children’s educational adventure series of story-telling books, eBooks, and iPhone/iPad apps. She also promotes wellness and naturopathic healthcare on her website DrHeatherND.com. She lives on the Big Island of Hawaii with her husband and two daughters, and is currently at work on the next Human Body Detectives adventure.

Excerpts:

Merrin and Pearl are at it again! This time these two young Human Body Detectives are exploring the skeletal system.

With the ability to jump in and examine the various systems in the body, Merrin and Pearl’s adventures are fun stories and helpful tools to educate children.

In Osteoblasts to the Rescue, Merrin and Pearl navigate their friend, Lily’s, broken arm and learn all about bones.

As the fourth in The Human Body Detectives series, Osteoblasts to the Rescue can also stand alone as a book that’s sure to inform, engage, and inspire readers of all ages.

We do have the gift of going into other people’s bodies to help them feel better, but being a Human Body Detective is a big responsibility and no one seems to need help right now, Merrin thought.

They landed on a hard smooth surface. Happily, they were still together. As their eyes opened, Pearl looked around and Merrin gasped, “Pearl, where are we?

Pearl leaned over to Merrin and felt along her spine. Merrin shivered a bit. “Those bones you feel when I touch your back are the spinal processes.”

“We need to get to Lily’s left arm, the one that is broken. I want to see the break and understand how the body will fix it. We might be in for a journey, Merrin! Most of the vertebrae have these spinal processes and if we climb up toward her head, we’ll find Lily’s left clavicle, which will lead us to her left arm.”

Oh my, Merrin thought.

Merrin realized Pearl’s shoelace was untied and bellowed out, “Pearl slow down and tie your shoelace!” But she was too late. Pearl tripped and then… She tumbled.

She landed on her stomach, her feet dangling off the rib.

They both looked up and noticed the sternum bone was completely vertical. They would need rock climbing gear tohave any chance of getting to the top

They both looked at each other and wondered if they were brave enough to do it. Who knew where they would land, let alone if they fell off the bone?

At that moment, osteoblasts came storming out from everywhere! They were all over the place. Merrin and Pearl tried to jump out of their way, but the osteoblasts were on a mission and didn’t even notice them.

“Well, I hope Lily is eating enough foods with calcium and

phosphorus. Actually, what food does she need to eat to get more of these nutrients?” Merrin asked.

More About the Skeletal System goes into more depth of the skeletal system.

Pearl was intrigued by the skeletal system. She learned some fun

facts along the way and wanted to share them with you.

did you know that… “osteo” is the Greek word for bone?

The Human Body Detectives know that the bones are living and need

exercise as much as the heart does. Along with a healthy diet, physical

activity is crucial for strong bones.

The Human Body Detectives love a great case, but they also love a

funny joke! Here are some of Merrin and Pearl’s favorites!

 

What do you call a skeleton who doesn’t like to get up in the morning?

Lazy Bones.

Originally posted 2013-06-28 00:01:58.

Romantic Roses Cake Pops Recipe

Aren’t these beautiful!  The sky is the limit with what you could do with them and I just love them!  Flowers my husband would appreciate!  LOL.  These and other adorable recipes can be found in the book 175 Best Babycakes Recipes by Kathy Moore and Roxanne Wyss.  You can check out my review here and get your copy here.  

If you don’t have a babycakes maker, don’t fret.  You can still make these adorable little things!  Just bake the cake, mix in one container of icing, roll into balls, freeze, then decorate!  😀

Makes 1 centerpiece

Create this show-stopping tiered arrangement of cake pop roses for a sophisticated garden fête, a tea party for a special grandmother or anytime you want to set the stage for a stylish occasion.
Ingredients
            Pink and white candy melts
20 to 24           Princess Cake Pops 20 to 24
            White sugar pearls
Materials
12        cake pop sticks         
1          pastry bag or squeeze bottle, fitted with a fine tip
            Strong craft glue, suitable for glass
2          glass candlesticks (about 4 inches/10 cm tall)
1          china dinner plate    
1          china soup bowl or salad plate       
1          china sugar bowl or cup     
            Light green tulle
            Styrofoam block (at least 3 inches/7.5 cm cubed)
12 feet green ribbon (1⁄8 to 1⁄4 inch/3 to 360 cm 5 mm wide)
            Pearl strings
1.         Melt 1⁄4 cup (60 mL) pink candy melts (see page 18) and use to attach sticks to 6 cake pops (see page 27). Freeze cake pops for at least 15 minutes to set. Reserve the remaining candy melts. Repeat with white candy melts, attaching sticks to 6 cake pops (8 to 12 cake pops will not have sticks).
2.         Add 1 cup (250 mL) pink candy melts to those left in the cup and melt until smooth. Coat the cake pops secured with pink candy melts. Set in a cake pop stand to dry. Using the fork tool, dip half of the cake pops without sticks and place them on a wire rack set over a sheet of foil or waxed paper to dry.
3.         Add 1 cup (250 mL) white candy melts to those left in the cup and melt until smooth. Coat the cake pops secured with white candy melts and immediately sprinkle with sugar pearls. Set in the stand to dry. Using the fork took, dip the remaining cake pops without sticks and place them on the rack to dry.
4.         Reheat pink candy melts, adding more as needed. Use the pastry bag to pipe a swirl in a tight circle on top of each pink cake pop (with and without sticks) to resemble a rose bud. Set cake pops with sticks in the stand to dry. Set cake pops without sticks on the rack to dry.
5.         Use craft glue to glue one candlestick to the bottom of the dinner plate to form a large pedestal. Glue the other candlestick to the bottom of the soup bowl to form a smaller pedestal. Let both dry.
6.         Place the small pedestal on top of the large pedestal. Place the sugar bowl on top of the small pedestal. If necessary for stability, glue everything together. Decoratively arrange tulle over the bottom two pedestal layers.
7.         Measure the dimensions of the sugar bowl and trim the Styrofoam to fit snugly and be about 1 inch (2.5 cm) shorter than the bowl. Place Styrofoam in the bowl.
8.         Cut ribbon into twelve 7-inch (17.5 cm) lengths (there will be ribbon left over). Tie a bow around each cake pop stick. Slide bows up to just below cake pops. Push the cake pop sticks into the Styrofoam, arranging the roses at different heights. Fill in around cake pops with small pieces of tulle, hiding the Styrofoam.
9.         Arrange the cake pops without sticks in the tulle on the middle and bottom layers. Cut the remaining ribbon into 8-inch (20 cm) lengths and tie small bows with long tails. Arrange the bows next to the cake pops so that the ribbon flows off the plates. Drape pearl strings around the cake pops on the bottom two layers.
Tips
It looks especially dramatic to place just one cake pop without a stick on one side of the middle layer, positioned beside a bow with especially long tails.
Inexpensive glass candlesticks and individual pieces of china can often be found at thrift stores, flea markets and estate sales. Even mismatched pieces can combine for an attractive look.
You can substitute tiered glass cake pedestals in graduated sizes for the china and candlesticks.
To complement this centerpiece, fill matching teacups with additional cake pops on sticks, decorated to match the large arrangement, and set the teacups around the room. Make enough cake pops so that each guest can eat one at the party and take one home as a favor.
Capture the days of wine and roses. For a beautiful evening, begin with a Romantic Roses centerpiece, then serve a bottle of Champagne, Prosecco or your favorite wine in your best wineglasses. Pure romance.

Excerpted from 175 Best Babycakes Cake Pop Maker Recipes by Kathy Moore & Roxanne Wyss © 2012 www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

Originally posted 2013-02-02 06:00:00.

Halloween Cake Pops

\halloween

I think these cake pops are adorable and since it’s the season….  So hook em up and enjoy your Halloween!

Some of you may remember catching my review of the 175 best Baby Cakes cake pops recipes (find it here).  This one was my fave Halloween centerpiece!  Here goes.

Ingredients
18 cake pops
White, orange, lavender, green, and black candy melts
Pumpkin or Halloween motif bowl
styrofoam block

Melt 1/4 cup white candy melts and use to attach sticks to 6 cake pops.  Freeze cake pops for at least 15 minutes to set.
Repeat with orange and lavender candy melts, using each color to attach sticks to 6 cake pops.

Add 1 cup white candy melts to those left in the cup and melt until smooth.  Coat the cake pops secured with white candy melts.

Set in a cake pop stand to dry.

Repeat with orange and lavender melts, 6 per color.

Melt 1/4 cup green candy melts.  Use a pastry bag to pipe a pumpkin stem onto each orange cake pop.  Set in the stand to dry.

Pipe two green eyes onto each of the 3 white cake pops.
Set in stand to dry.

If you like this recipe and would like more, you can order yours here.  I’d love to see pics of your creations!

Excerpt from 175 Best Babycakes Cake Pop Maker Recipes by Kathy Moore & Roxanne Wyss © 2012 www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

Originally posted 2012-10-27 05:00:00.

Chocolate Mint Cookies

My first guest post!!!  I felt so proud!  😀  I posted a recipe that Monkey and I made for Chocolate Peppermint Cookies!  They turned out super yummy!  SO, go by and check em out if you wish!  They are posted up at Dominique’s Desk!

A sneak peak???

Just this once….

Yummy looking, huh!?!  Go by and say hello and snag the recipe!

Originally posted 2011-12-20 14:51:00.

Pumpkin Bread

What better treat on a cold night than pumpkin bread???  I made some for our church and our guests at Thanksgiving, and a loaf to fill our bellies later!  😀  I was initially scared to try it, but it was amazingly easy!  Also, very inexpensive!  Here goes:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 cup butter, soften
2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 16 oz can of pure pumpkin
1. Preheat oven to 350º and spray three medium loaf pans with nonstick cooking spray.  (I got the tin ones at Dollar Tree so that I could freeze some)  Or, you can do multiple (I forgot to count!) small loaves to give as gifts!  Don’t fill more than 2/3 full!  😀

2. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, spices, salt, baking soda, and baking powder and set aside.

 3. In the bowl, mix cream the butter and the sugar until fluffy, about two minutes. Add eggs one at a time mixing well after each addition. Add the pumpkin and combine well.
4. Add the dry ingredients stirring until just combined. Coat the cinnamon chips with 2 T. flour and stir into batter.
5. Spoon batter into prepared pans. Bake side-by-side for about one hour or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. (Bake mini pumpkins 25- 30 and 35-40 minutes for the mini loaves.)

Note: Substitute 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon plus 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg and 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves for 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice.

I used my Gypsy Wanderings to make the tags, then wrote on them.  😀  I also had a loaf to eat on for dessert!  They turned out really well and everyone was pleased to take some home!  As a side note, remember when I said I ran out of brown material????  This is a basket covered with a skirt!  No one thought twice about it!!!

Thanks for visiting the Zoo!!!  Stick around and check it out!  Don’t forget to go and sign up for my Giveaway, tomorrow is the last day to sign up before our winner is drawn!!!  There is also a few giveaways here!

Here are some great gifts you can check out:

Great Kid’s Book
DIY Jewelry Hanger

 

Originally posted 2011-11-30 03:24:00.

Kitty Litter Halloween Cake

KittyLitterCake

Isn’t this just HORRIBLE GOODNESS!!! The adults were slightly sickened, but the kids loved it!  Guess that’s how it goes!   We had a great time making it and the reactions to it were very entertaining!  A friend and I made it for a Halloween Party for teen girls and really enjoyed it!  I’m going to go ahead and admit that making the poo was really fun!  We were up late and giggling, so that may have contributed!  Complete the party with scary stories and some ‘bloody punch’, and you’ll all have a night to cherish forever!  I can’t seem to find the pictures of the inside, but using some food coloring, when you slice into it, it looks fabulous!  Here’s how ya make it!

Ingredients:
1 white cake mix, made as directed
green food coloring
1 container cool whip
Any flavor of white colored pudding, made as directed
graham cracker crumbs or vanilla wafers (any tan or light brown cookie would do fine), crushed
tootsie rolls
CLEAN  NEW KITTY LITTER BOX AND SCOOP!!!

Directions:

Make cake as directed.  Let cool.  Take cake out of cake pan and crumble into both large and small chunks.  You can’t really go wrong with the sizes, it will work regardless and you can modify it if you don’t like the way it looks when you put it in the ‘litter box’.  Mix pudding and cake together.  Once you get it smoothed the way you want it, go through in different spots and mix in a bit of food coloring.  This will give it the kitty litter look!  Smooth out cool whip on top, adding small spots of green food coloring in random places.  Cover with crushed cookies/graham crackers.  Take tootsie rolls and stretch and mold them to look like, well I think you can guess!  Let chill in the fridge for a while so that the pudding can thicken to desired texture!  Serve with a litter scoop and enjoy!!!  We used a storage container with rounded edges, the scoop was only a buck, so it wasn’t bad.  Gotta love dollar tree!!!

You’ll Find this Zoo Exhibit Featured Here:

Originally posted 2011-09-28 14:31:00.