Sunday, December 27, 2015

Spinach Mandarin Orange Pizza

My family has never been a football family. I don't know the difference between a touch down, field goal, or any of the other stuff. BUT, as far back as I can remember, my mom always had us tuned in to watch the Rose Parade.  This year I am excited to be part of Dole Packaged Foods ‘Live on Green’ Food Blogger Blast Party 2016 Rose Parade led by Dole California Cook-Off Champion Ally Phillips of Ally’s Kitchen.  

December 29th and 30th, Ally will perform live cooking demonstrations and share quick and fun recipes featuring Dole Packaged Foods’ products.  
One of the recipes Ally will be making is this Spinach Mandarin Orange Pizza. This pizza was so different. Light and fresh, making it a perfect appetizer to serve for your New Year's  (or any other) party.

On January 1, tune in to watch the Tournament of Roses Parade where Dole Packaged Food’s float, “Soaring Over Paradise,” explores the world’s rainforests. The float includes four waterfalls, a zip line that travels through the rainforest canopy and a flock of Macaws that appear to take flight over the floral gardens.

Disclaimer:This is part of a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own.

Spinach Mandarin Orange Pizza

1 packaged roll out pizza dough ( I used homemade following this recipe from What's Cookin' Italian Style Cuisine)
8 oz container whipped cream cheese
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp course ground black pepper
1/2 cup orange marmalde
1 cup sauteed and drained spinach
1 cup Dole®  Packaged Foods Mandarin Oranges, drained well
1/2 cup pepperoni, chopped

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Roll out pizza dough into irregular shape on baking sheet covered with parchment paper (I used my baking stone). Spread whipped cream cheese onto pizza crust. Over top of whipped cream cheese, sprinkle salt and pepper, then spread orange marmalade.
Place spinach, mandarin oranges, and pepperoni over top.

Bake in preheated oven 17-20 minutes, or until edges are golden. Slice and serve immediately.

#RoseParade #LiveOnTheGreen #DolePackagedFoods #DoleTournamentOfRoses
Source: Ally's Kitchen

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Sunday, December 20, 2015

Christmas Fudge

Baking weekend was a success. Cookies, Fudge, Nut Krispies, Peanut Butter Cups, Pinwheel Cookies, and maybe Gingerbread Cookies yet tonight. Not sure about that yet. Truckin' Man is even helping decorate the cookies! How cool is that? He doesn't look to have much truckin' this week, so maybe I'll see if I can get him trained in on more of the Christmas baking!

I was so happy that things went so smoothly, because this means I get to share a recipe with you! I LOVE my fudge recipe. I have been making this recipe for at least fifteen years and it has never failed me! It gets quite the rave reviews from friends and family too. 
So, if you haven't made fudge yet, give this a try!

Christmas Fudge
1 - 7 ounce jar marshmallow cream
1 1/2 cup sugar
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1/4 cup butter
1/4 tsp. salt
2 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 chopped walnuts
1 tsp vanilla

Line 8x8 pan with foil.  In large saucepan, over medium heat, combine marshmallow cream, sugar, evaporated milk, butter, and salt.  Stirring occasionally, bring to full boil. Once at a boil, set timer for 5 minutes, and stir continuously. After 5 minutes, remove from heat, and add chocolate chips.  Stir until chocolate is melted, and mixture is smooth. Stir in walnuts, and vanilla.  Pour into lined pan. Chill overnight (at least 2 hours).  


Thursday, December 17, 2015

Some of my Favorite Christmas Treats


How are you all doing on your Christmas baking? I haven't even started!! I ended up coming down with a cold over the weekend, and then Truckin' Man has been completely super sick the last couple days. I hope we are germ free by the weekend so I can get things rollin'!

I had planned to have a couple new recipes to share with you, but that apparently isn't working out the way I had hoped. Instead, I am sharing some of my favorite recipes that I have previously shared!


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Friday, December 11, 2015

Eggnog Fudge


Welcome to the Freaky Friday Virtual Holiday Cookie Exchange! 12 bloggers got together, we were secretly assigned another blog to select a Christmas cookie/treat from. This was sooo much fun! We are all finding out the same time as you, who was assigned to each other, and to ourselves! Be sure to check out the links at the bottom of the page, and find out what recipes everyone else found for their new holiday treats!

I was so excited when I was assigned to An Affair from the Heart. Michaela has so many amazing recipes. Be sure to go over to her blog and check them out. You really will be pinning up a storm once you see all her fantastic recipes!  I was torn between Double Chocolate Peppermint Puppy Chow, and then I was drooling over the Rainbow Cookies!  But, once I saw her Eggnog Fudge, I knew what I had to do! Eggnog Fudge it was.

I haven't had Eggnog in years. Seriously, years. Not since I used to make it for my dad when I was just a wee little one, and using the recipe in my first ever cookbook.  I have missed this flavor, and am so inspired now to try more recipes with Eggnog.

This Eggnog Fudge, is my new favorite fudge! And, I am kinda surprised at that, because I am not a huge white chocolate fan, but the Eggnog, the white chocolate, the nutmeg.... Everything blends together so beautifully, that you just need to make this fudge for your friends and family!

Eggnog Fudge
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons Eggnog
2 Tbsp heavy whipping cream
2 cups sugar
10 ounce white chocolate chips
7 ounce jar marshmallow fluff
1/2 tsp nutmeg (plus additional for finishing)
2 tsp vanilla

Line 9 x 9 baking pan with with parchment paper.

In medium saucepan, combine butter, eggnog, cream, and sugar. Over medium heat, bring to boil, stir occasionally. Boil for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring constantly, until candy thermometer reaches 234 degrees. Remove from heat.

Add white chocolate, stirring until melted and smooth. Stir in marshmallow fluff, nutmeg, and vanilla. Mix until well blended and smooth. Spread into pan, sprinkle top with additional nutmeg.

Let cool at room temperature. Once cooled, transfer to refrigerator and chill until firm.  Cut into squares.  Store in refrigerator.

Source: An Affair From the Heart

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Saturday, December 5, 2015

The Day it Snowed

This season has been minimal on snowfall so far. Even though we have little snow covering now. 
Once in a while it does snow.

I am always excited to see what the animals and chickens think of the first snow.
So, the chicken coop is my first stop.

Pretty view, isn't it?

Lil' Miss Australorp wasn't having anything to do with that white stuff.

Nope, that's as far as they went. No further than the little door.

Have a great weekend!

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Thursday, December 3, 2015

Hot Chocolate Snowballs

Are you ready to start your holiday baking?? I am! I have been so excited to try a couple new recipes that had caught my attention a while back, and this is one of them. These Hot Chocolate Snowballs seemed to be a pretty popular recipe, which had my hopes even higher.  So I planned these for December's Fill the Cookie Jar, to have the perfect Christmas Cookie to share with you.

The older I get, the more quickly I seem to get chilled, so I love wrapping my hands around a mug of something delicious. Just the name of this cookie makes me feel warm and festive.

These are so fast and simple to make.  Well, fast as long as you don't have cocoa mix with marshmallows and need to pick the marshmallows out! I will tell you too... I LOVE to eat cookie dough. LOVE it. This recipe does not have eggs in it, so I didn't even need to feel bad about enjoying that cookie dough! I can always tell when a cookie dough knocks my socks off, that the cookies are going to bring a big smile to my face, and these did exactly that! The perfect amount of cocoa, with the sweetness of the sugar dusting... Santa's belly would be happy to have some of these.

If you are interested in joining Fill The Cookie Jar group on facebook, fill out the form that can be found at Fill The Cookie Jar. Each month we bake a different theme for the cookie.
We bake, we share and we enjoy our cookies!

Hot Chocolate Snowballs

2/3 cup butter, softened
3 oz cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup hot cocoa mix
1/3 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 3/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp salt
Additional powdered sugar for rolling

In large mixing bowl, cream together butter, and cream cheese. Mix until smooth. Add hot cocoa mix and powdered sugar. Stir in vanilla.  In small bowl, combine flour and salt, gradually add to cocoa mixture. Mix until flour is fully combined.  Cover, and refrigerator for one hour.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheet(s) with parchment paper.   With small cookie dough scoop (my scoop holds one tablespoon), roll chilled dough into balls. Place balls on lined baking sheets, and bake for 12-14 minutes. Let cool for 3-4 minutes, then roll in powdered sugar. Transfer to wire rack to cool. 

Once completely cooled, roll in powdered sugar once more, if desired.

Source: Jam Hands

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