Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Friday, June 4, 2010
I'd seen a recipe on a blog for a peanut butter crispy treat that looked intriguing and thought it would make a great addition to my "basket o'treats." Sadly, when I went looking for it, I couldn't find it. I did some searching around online and found a lot of recipes that seemed similar. I combined a little of this one and a little of that one and came up with my own version of this tasty, easy treat.
The great things about this treat are numerous: you can make the recipe in a matter of minutes, it utilizes ingredients you likely already have in your kitchen, it's very inexpensive, and the flavors really compliment one another. It's a great blend of crunchy and creamy, salty and sweet. Want to know how to make it? OK, I'll tell you!
Peanut Butter Cereal Treats
1 c. light corn syrup
1 c. sugar
1 c. peanut butter
6 c. corn chex cereal
1 c. salted peanuts
Spray a 9 X 13 pan with cooking spray; set aside. In a small saucepan, bring the corn syrup and sugar to a boil. Remove from heat and whisk in peanut butter. Combine cereal and peanuts in a large bowl. Pour syrup mixture over cereal and peanuts; stir to combine. Press cereal mixture in to the pan. When cooled and firm, cut in to bars.
The peanut buttery sauce that glues the cereal and nuts together is heavenly. It's almost like a peanut butter caramel. It takes some gently stirring to get the mixture to go from this...
...but it's well worth the effort. I've found that if I stir slowly with a rubber spatula, the cereal stays relatively whole and the peanuts distribute nicely. Also, if you don't have chex cereal, use crispy rice cereal. It will work just as well.
Please pardon, once again, the blueish tint of my fluorescent kitchen lighting.)
Back to my confession. I still maintain my treat basket idea was a brilliant one. The planning was a blast. Even the baking of several different goodies went off without a hitch. The problem I must confess is that the treats never made it out of my kitchen. (If you are my neighbor, I sincerely apologize.) Distractions kept me from ever putting together my baskets. Pathetic! I must sadly report that several (and by that I mean WAY more than should have) treats ended up in my own tummy. I eventually farmed the weekend's bounty out to Mr. C's co-workers. However, the good news is that conference comes twice a year, so I can start planning now to surprise my neighbors in October.
Note to self: follow through with your plan next time.
In the meantime, I think I'll go make a batch of these:
I bet my neighbors would be just as happy with a plate of them today as they would have been 2 months ago.
P.S. Welcome to any new friends visiting after hearing about this blog at my cooking class today! I'm so happy that you're here!
Thursday, June 3, 2010
These little beauties have a lot of names in our family. My aunt calls them Abracadabras. Some people call them wraps or pinwheels. But, in my immediate family, we call them "Little Burrito Things." We love these things. It's rare for any family event to go by without little burrito things being there.
I know what you're thinking. You're thinking there are 1,000,001 roll up type recipes out there. You're right. There are. I've found this one to be different than others I've tried because it's more of an appetizer type roll up than a meat and cheese sandwich type roll. Whether I've made them for a casual craft day with friends, or a formal open house, the recipe has been a hit. In fact, on year I made about 500 for a church Christmas party and not one came back home. (Good thing since I was sick of them by that point!)
The ingredients are few, simple, and cheap. Let me show you!
Little Burrito Things
16 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 cans chopped olives
2 can green chilies (undrained)
1/2-1 t. Bon Appetit seasoning (or seasoned salt)
4 packages of pressed ham lunch meat
10 8" flour tortillas
Mix the first 3 ingredients in a large bowl. Add seasoning to taste. Layer 4 pieces of ham on each tortilla. Divide the cream cheese mixture among the tortillas and spread leaving a 1" border on one side. Roll up beginning from the edge opposite the 1" edge. Cover the wraps and chill. Slice before serving.
Could it be more simple than that? I think not! Let's review a couple things. First of all, the Bon Appetit. If you don't have this incredible seasoning in your home, RUN--don't walk--to the store to get some. It's a lovely combination of celery seed, onion, and salt. The not so lovely part? It can be difficult to find. And, when you find it, it can be 5.00-6.00 a the small spice bottle. I think it's worth the investment though. It will last you for a very long time, it can be used in other things, and I think it makes this dish. But, you can substitute basic seasoned salt if you prefer. Second, the ham. Buy the cheapest pressed stuff a the store. You know, the super thin stuff that is about 60 or so cents a package. Each package has 10 slices in it and 4 packages will divide perfectly among the 10 tortillas. Third, the chilies. Don't worry about them being spicy. They are mixed in enough cream cheese that they add flavor without spice.
Just a couple side notes. I ususally cut my rolls about 3/4" wide, but you can cut them as wide or thin as you like. Cutting them at 3/4" will give you about 70 or so little rolls. Also, this recipe is super easy to half or multiply (remember the 500 Christmas rolls), so it's great for small or large gatherings.
Want to know one of the best parts of making little burrito things? These:
The ends! The ends of each roll up never stay closed, so they get tossed aside. In our family, it's always a race to see who gets to them first! I suggest slicing the rolls when nobody else is around. That way you don't have to fight over the ends. They'll be all yours!