The 25 Days of Holiday Goodies Day 10: Funfetti Mug Cake

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Sprinkles.  Cake.  In the microwave.  ‘Nuff said.

Or is it?  Think of a cupcake prepared in a mug in the microwave, start to finish, in under five minutes.  Warm and gooey with frosting, this warm dessert is a perfect treat for one on a cold-ish night or for an impromptu celebration.

Muffin had been bugging me for those (insanely overpriced) microwaveable cake-for-one desserts in the store.  I kept putting him off, knowing I had this recipe in my back pocket to make as a special pre-trick-or-treating Halloween treat.

He…wasn’t as thrilled with them as I thought.  The only thing I can attribute to that is the applesauce meant to replace the oil in the recipe.  It made the texture slightly grainy.

Overall, the texture was better than in other microwave cakes which tend to be bouncy and springy in a bad way, rubbery, almost what I imagine a tennis ball tasting like.

I, personally, loved it, and am stowing it away for the rainy day when I need a pick-me-up.

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Funfetti Mug Cake

Source:  Tablespoon

3 T yellow cake mix (preferably one with pudding in the mix

1 T water

1 T unsweetened applesauce (or vegetable oil)

1 T egg (Next time I will use egg in a carton!)

1 T confetti candy sprinkles and more for garnish

3 T rainbow chip frosting, or 3 T white frosting mixed with additional confetti candy sprinkles

1 maraschino cherry

Lightly spray microwaveable mug (8-10 ounce) with cooking spray.

In a small bowl, beat cake mix, water, applesauce or oil, and egg.  Fold in 1 teaspoon sprinkles; immediately pour into mug.

Microwave, uncovered, on high 1 minute.  Let stand five seconds.  Top with frosting, additional sprinkles, and cherry.  Serve warm.

Note:  The frosting melts and turns into a glaze.  Alternatively, wait for the cake to cool and top with the frosting (piped in even), sprinkles, and a cherry.

What is your favorite type of cake to adapt to a mug?

 

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The 25 Days of Holiday Goodies Day 4: Homemade Quickie Kahlua

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I have previously shared two other liqueur recipes:  limoncello and St. Germain (elderflower liqueur).  I love making liqueurs and cordials to give as gifts–and two use in recipes.

The very first liqueur I ever made was Kahlua, or homemade coffee liqueur.  It was very strong at first sample, so I learned that liqueur recipes must be allowed time to mellow.

You can also use this Kahlua (once it has aged) to make tiramisu.

Homemade Kahlua

Source:  Cooks.com

2 cups sugar

2 cups water

1/3 cup instant coffee

1 cup vodka (but oopsie I added 750 mL)

1 1/2 T vanilla extract

Simmer sugar, water, and instant coffee for 30 minutes.  Cool.  Add vodka and vanilla.  Bottle or jar.

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*Note:  This needs to age at least two to three weeks before consumption!

What is your favorite food gift?

 

The 25 Days of Holiday Goodies: 2017 Edition

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Welcome to that most wonderful time of the year!  Yes, I’m back.  I hope I am back for good.

This round of the 25 Days of Holiday Goodies is a mix of old favorites and new exciting selections.  In fact, I thought I had already included a few of them on the blog.

Without further ado, here is the plan:

1:  Fluffy Fruit Dip

2:  White Sausage Rotel

3:  Jezebel Sauce

4:  Kahlua

5:  Microwave Pralines

6:  Cheesy Snack Mix

7:  Velveeta Cheese Fudge

8:  Caramel Truffles

9:  Magic Cookie Bars

10:  Funfetti Mug Cake

11:  Mom’s Cheesecake (AKA Best Ever Cheesecake in River Road Recipes)

12:  Vanilla Mini Cheesecakes

13:  Death by Chocolate Mini Cheesecakes

14:  Caramel Macchiato Mini Cheesecakes

15:  Mom’s Rolls

16:  Mashed Potatoes

17:  Arnold Palmer

18:  Warm Mulled Cranberry Apple Cider

19:  Triple Berry Smoothie

20:  Cranberry Relish Daiquiri

21:  Deviled Eggs

22:  Gumbo

23:  Denver Omelet Burritos

24:  Jumbo Pico Salad

25:  Jello Shots (because sometimes the holiday season can drive us to this point)

I hope you enjoy this time of family, friends, and fellowship.

What is your favorite “goodie” of the holiday season?

The Hardest Post to Write

I know that I have not written lately.

There are times when upbeat posts cannot happen.

I have considered ending the blog.

Many of my readers, those that are personal family and friends, would understand why.  In the early morning hours of July 17, Muffin and I lost our anchor.  Josh, my husband of nearly ten years (and Muffin’s proud father) passed away after a heart attack.

In many ways, it hasn’t hit yet.

On Facebook, I know my responses to the well-wishes seemed stilted and unemotional; my feelings were hardly the case.  I know, too, this post seems like a recitation of an event.

For one of the first times in my life, I do not have the words to express my feelings.

But I feel that I owe it to Josh, and to Muffin, to press on with the blog.

For my followers who are also Facebook friends, I am not posting this post on Facebook for others to mull over.  This post is too private, too personal, to do so.

I will post an abbreviated MPM post tomorrow, just as a catch up of things to come.

 

 

Tip Tuesday: Pizza in Another Exciting Incarnation

Tip Tuesday

Pizza.  PIZZA!  Pizzahhhhhhhhh!!!

Is there a way that pizza (in its various forms) isn’t yummy?

But sometimes…the local pizza joint, or a Pepperoni Pizza Hot Pocket, or English Muffin Pizzas just fail to satisfy.

Sometimes, pizza gets a little ho-hum.  Mundane.  Ordinary.  Boring.  Trite.  Overdone (and I don’t necessarily mean burnt).

Sometimes you can (gasp!) get sick and tired of pizza.

That is when pizzahhh needs a reboot.

Today’s reboot comes courtesy of Kraft Recipes.  Well, mostly.  If you have been reading this blog for any length of time, you know that it is impossible for me to follow a recipe exactly.  I.  Must.  Modify.

And luckily, this recipe is easily modifiable and adaptable.

What is it, exactly?

Pepperoni Pizza Lasagna.

Let me repeat that lusciousness again.  Pepperoni Pizza Lasagna.

Cheesy, saucy, meaty, pasta-y, veggie goodness.

And easily adaptable.

Yes, this is recipe nirvana.  (And not the band)

Nirvana (the band) is not exactly the genre of music I hear in my head when making and consuming copious amounts of this recipe.  Sinatra, yes.  Alternative?  No.  Think the Olive Garden soundtrack.  “When the moon meats your eye, like a big pizza pie…”

And, now back to recipe matters and not mangling-lyrics matters.

The original recipe calls for raw diced bell pepper and onion.  That creates two problems in our household.  1)  The peppers and onions don’t get completely cooked, and 2)  Muffin is not a fan of raw bell pepper and raw onion.  And, since he eats so many other healthy things, I have learned not to push my luck.

So, we adapted.  We subbed olives for the peppers and onions.  I think it would also be fabulous with most pizza toppings.  Except maybe pineapple.  As much as I love pineapple pizza, the thought of pineapple and lasagna noodles makes me slightly nauseated.

But Italian sausage, browned and added to the sauce and crumbled over the top?  Definitely!  (Even though we haven’t tried it that way yet.)

So, what do we do usually?

Pepperoni Pizza Lasagna

Adapted from Kraft Recipes (see link above)

1 egg, beaten

1 (15 ounce) container part-skim ricotta cheese

1/2 cup grated Parmesan

2 cups shredded mozzarella, divided

1 pkg. pepperoni, divided (I used the 6 ounce package from Aldi)

1 cup (1 can large pitted ripe olives, sliced) veggies, divided

1 jar (24 ounces) smooth pasta sauce (Traditional flavor, if possible)

1/2 cup water

1 package lasagna noodles, uncooked (You will not use them all.)

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together the egg, ricotta, Parmesan, and half of the mozzarella.

Reserve 12-15 pepperoni slices and 1/2 cup olive slices (or 1/4 cup other vegetation).  Chop remaining pepperoni.  Add it to a medium bowl with sauce, water, and remaining vegetation (olives).

Spray a 9×13 dish or foil pan with cooking spray.  Spread 1/2-3/4 cup sauce on the bottom.  Top with a layer of lasagna noodles, broken to fit, as necessary; 1/3 ricotta mixture; and 1/2 cup of sauce.  Repeat layers twice.  Top with lasagna noodles, sauce, cheese, and reserved toppings (meat and vegetation).  Cover with foil sprayed with cooking spray.

Bake 35 minutes.  Uncover and cook 10 minutes more.  Remove from oven and cool completely.  Cut into serving-sized squares, with a slice of pepperoni centered in the square.

Chill or freeze.

When ready to eat, remove the desired number of squares and reheat in the microwave until heated through.

*Note:  I tried eating this 10 minutes post-oven, but the noodles are on the hard side of al dente.  For some reason, chilling it overnight after cooked softens the noodles to a more preferable al dente (as in, you can then chew them).

This recipe was definitely Muffin Approved!

Muffin Approved

What is your favorite pizzahhhh variation?

Meal Plan Monday: The Between Christmas and New Years’ Edition

Meal Plan Monday

I don’t know about you, but I am exhausted.  For the last month, the meal plans have sorta not worked too well.  As in epic fails.  As in, I knew when I planned them that they were not going to go well.

I will spare you the horrific details.  This week is how-to-prep for New Years’ Eve and New Years’ Day while still enjoying the leftover goodies of Christmas.

I’m going to supply the menu for everything for the next two weeks (because the “eves” and “days” are a bit more complicated, recipe-wise).

Here we go.

Saturday (Christmas Eve):  snackies (little sausages in barbecue sauce and raspberry chipotle Tabasco sauce because choosing to wait until December 23 to purchase jalapeno pepper jelly simply doesn’t work, white sausage rotel and chips, treat tray, cream cheese and pepper jelly)

Sunday (Christmas morning/breakfast):  sausage biscuit breakfast casserole, fruit cup, tomato slices, sparkling grape juice

Sunday Lupper:  turkey, ham, cranberry orange relish, dressing, mashed potatoes, tourtiere, gravy, relishes (pickles and olives, plus carrots, tiny tomatoes, celery, and cucumber slices), macaroni and cheese, spinach madeleine, yams richard, crescent rolls, and treat tray

Monday:  leftovers see above

Tuesday:  hopefully leftovers (see above)

Wednesday:  chili (freeze leftovers)

Thursday:  leftovers or hot dog

Friday:  mini pizzas

Saturday (New Years’ Eve):  chicken and steak fajitas, guacamole, beans, pico de gallo and chips, Spanish rice, treat tray

Sunday (New Years’ Day):  probably ham (or some pork like form), greens, hot water cornbread, treat tray

Monday:  fajita leftovers

Tuesday:  sloppy joes, fries or tater tots

Wednesday:  pizza lasagna, green veg

Thursday:  leftovers or hot dog

Friday:  pizza

Saturday:  stir fry

Sunday:  roast of some kind

And there you go.  The latest Saturday and Sunday are not set in stone.  But the rest pretty much is.

How does your time look to be shaping up?