Sunday, December 30, 2012

Chocolate Mint Trifle

This trifle was our Christmas dessert, or one of them anyway.  I love how a trifle looks like you've worked really hard, but in reality, you haven't.  

This one is based on the recipe I found at a site called The Cooking Mom.  I did most things the same, except I didn't color my whipped topping green, because it just seemed unnecessary.  And I used chopped up Andes mints instead of  mint baking chips.  

Here's the recipe:

1 box (19.5 ounces) family size brownie mix, prepared according to directions and baked in 9 x13 inch pan
3 cups cold milk
2 boxes (3.4 ounces) instant chocolate pudding
1 container (12 ounces) of frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
a couple drops of green food coloring
1 ½ cups mint baking chips
a few Andes mints, unwrapped
Fresh mint sprig (optional)

Cool brownies and cut into 1 to 2 inch cubes. Beat pudding and milk together until it starts to thicken. In another bowl, mix peppermint extract and a few drops of green food coloring into the whipped topping until it turns light green. Place half of the brownie cubes in the bottom of a trifle dish or clear glass bowl. Top with half of the chocolate pudding. Sprinkle on half of the mint chips. Next, carefully spread half of the green whipped topping over mints. Repeat with the remaining brownies, pudding, and mint chips. Cover loosely with plastic and refrigerate until ready to serve. Right before serving remove plastic and decorate the top with a “cloud” of the reserved green whipped topping. Place some whole mints on top and garnish with fresh mint sprig.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Crispy Baked Orange Chicken Wings

Very Merry Christmas to all of you! I can't believe it's been September since I posted anything!  But my daughter got a laptop for Christmas which means I finally have mine all to myself again, so hopefully things will start rolling along a little better now.  

But back to Christmas....I hope you had a wonderful day celebrating with people you love, and hopefully some good food to go along with it.  I decided I didn't really want a regular turkey and dressing type Christmas dinner, so we had appetizers.  Because I love appetizers and always feel guilty stuffing myself with them before the main course.  So it only makes sense to just make them the main course.  We had so many good things...pineapple cheeseball, buffalo chicken dip, apple caramel dip, and these delicious wings that were new to me.  

I really loved these little beauties, and I also love that they are baked and not fried.  It could have something to do with the fact that I've lost the power cord to my deep fryer, and I also just hate the mess.  

So I will cut the chatter and give you the recipe that I found from Just a Taste (via Pinterest).  

For the Chicken:
2½ pounds chicken wings, tips removed, drumettes and flats separated
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

For the Sauce:  
1 1/2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
2 1/2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes, or more to taste
3/4 cup orange marmalade
1/4 cup hoisin sauce

Preheat oven to 400ºF.
Rinse wings and drumettes and pat dry. Transfer to a large bowl and toss with vegetable oil, salt and pepper. Position wings on baking racks in a single layer ensuring that wings aren't touching.
Bake, rotating pan half-way through, until fully cooked, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove wings from oven and transfer to a large bowl.
Add the sesame oil and olive oil to a small saucepot over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, for about 3 minutes until golden brown.
Add the red pepper flakes, orange marmalade and hoisin sauce, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.
Pour the orange sauce over the wings, tossing to thoroughly coat, and serve immediately.

I hope you get a chance to try these, maybe New Years?  I've really missed the whole blogging experience and interaction so I'm looking forward to visiting with all of you and seeing your wonderful creations very soon.