Monday, March 5, 2012

#60 and #61...

Is it bad my diet has taken a back seat? I still watch what I eat, limit my intake of dairy and grains, and exercise on a very regular basis, but I'm just not letting it control my life anymore. I don't constantly crave the horrible foods I used to miss because I'm not constantly thinking about when my next meal is, nor am I not allowing myself certain foods. I just don't eat a lot of junk, but when I do, I don't feel bad about it because I feel much healthier than I used to.

My weight fluctuates slightly these days: I'm usually hanging in the balance between 134 and 136, which isn't bad. It's actually a weight I hope to maintain until the wedding and then some. What I'm focusing on more or less these days is just my work outs- I want to build muscle, and tone! Plus, going to my gym 3,4,5 times a week is doing WONDERS for my stress levels. I feel MUCH more calm this year than I did last year around this time. My clothes fit much more loosely, I just feel like a happier person.

That is, UNTIL I came down with strep throat this weekend. Which is giving me ample time in bed, and therefore lots of time to blog. Hmph.

Oh well. Here's my last two recipes...

The first came to be because I was finding all of these awesome cake mix cookie recipes that only require like, four to five ingredients each AND they are super easy to whip up. I really wanted an excuse to try one of these recipes, and usually I would unleash them on the Bairds, but since Ava is allergic to peanuts, I've been trying to find other people who'd be willing to try my treats. Who better than my kiddos at school? I'd already done the research- there are NO fourth graders with known peanut allergies, PLUS I had just promised a few groups of them lunch with me one Wednesday since they had earned the most group points for good behavior.

#60: Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Cake Mix Cookies (or as I call them "Kiddo Silencers"- honestly, I gave each of the kids who had lunch with me that afternoon two of these, turned on an episode of Scooby Doo, and they were quiet the entire time- as found on


1 (18.25 oz) box chocolate cake mix
2 eggs
1/3 cup canola or vegetable oil
1 8 oz bag Reese's Minis


1. Preheat oven to 350°. With your mixer, beat together cake mix, oil and eggs until combined. Pour in entire bag of Reese's Minis. Mix on low until Reese's are evenly incorporated.
     - All right, a couple of things to note: I went ahead and mixed up the dough a couple of hours prior to baking it off and kept it in the freezer until AFTER Zumba (priorities people!). On top of that, I couldn't find a bag of the mini Reese's, so I went ahead and bought a 12 oz bag of those Reese's miniature cups that you have to unwrap out of the foil. I just had to slice them in half, and then incorporate them into the batter, and it worked out great.

2. Roll the dough into tablespoon sized balls and place n a parchment lined baking sheet about 2" apart. Cookies will spread. Bake for 8-9 minutes.
      - Naturally, no parchment paper for this girl, so I lightly greased my cookie sheets with a little PAM prior to baking them. Worked out just fine!

These were delicious, and dangerous. Highly addictive. I ate quite a few more than I meant to, SO WORTH IT though!

The next recipe, I devoted hours to really scouring Pinterest for the PERFECT recipe- it was NICHELLE'S birthday! Considering I hadn't spent time with her for about TWO MONTHS prior to this last Friday, I really wanted to bake something fun in honor of her favorite day! It was a toss up between the following recipe, and another one called "Slutty Brownies," because to be honest, I knew Nichelle was one of the only people in my inner circle who could appreciate the names of either of these treats. Instead, I baked something called "Knock You Naked Brownies"... prepare to start a'drooling, peeps.

#61: Knock You Naked Brownies (which could also be called "Knock You Silent Brownies," since they had the same affect, and it might be a little strange if I had kicked off my pants at Nichelle's place, if you know what I mean?- as found on


1 box (18.5 Ounce) German Chocolate Cake Mix (I Used Duncan Hines)
1 cup Finely Chopped Pecans
1/3 cup Evaporated Milk
1/2 cup Evaporated Milk (additional)1/2 cup Butter, Melted
60 whole Caramels, Unwrapped
1/3 cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1/4 cup Powdered Sugar


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together cake mix, chopped pecans, 1/3 cup evaporated milk, and melted butter. Stir together until totally combined. Mixture will be very thick
      - They aren't kidding. This mixture was literally like Play-doh. Clay you can EAT!! Oh, and I opted out of using the chopped pecans because Nichelle believes desserts are NO place for nuts. 
2. Press half the mixture into a well-greased 9 x 9 inch square baking pan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove pan from oven and set aside.
3. In a double boiler (or a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of boiling water) melt caramels with additional 1/2 cup evaporated milk. When melted and combined, pour over brownie base. Sprinkle chocolate chips as evenly as you can over the caramel.
     - Don't be dumb like me and stick the spoon with scalding caramel immediately into your mouth. You will get a major burn on your tongue. You think I'd learn my lesson- isn't this the third time I've severely burnt my tongue in this blog?
4. Turn out remaining brownie dough on work surface. Use your hands to press it into a large square a little smaller than the pan. Use a spatula to remove it from the surface, then set it on top of the caramel and chocolate chips.
     - I TRIED doing this. I got impatient and instead ended up just spreading the rest of the dough over the top of the caramel and chocolate chip mixture. It ended up becoming like a crumble you might put on top of a cobbler though... delicious, but kind of weird.
5. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from pan and allow to cool to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate for several hours. When ready to serve, generously sift powdered sugar over the surface of the brownies. Cut into either nine or twelve helpings, and carefully remove from the pan.
     - Several hours? Try ten minutes, tee hee. Nichelle and I spooned this out (which held up like a crumble, not a brownie) into a bowl, and then topped it with this AWESOME caramel cheesecake ice cream I found on sale at Albertson's. Be forewarned though, this is SUPER rich. We turned on Modern Family, and I couldn't finish the small portion I put into my bowl... it was WAY TOO rich. Good, but holy cow. Make sure you have milk on hand, a lot of it.
Check out these pictures from the Pioneer Woman herself... because I was too busy eating and catching up to take pictures (tee hee).

1 comment:

  1. LOVED the brownies! And so did everyone else who tried them at my place over the past week!!! So incredibly rich, but so incredibly good!! And I can't believe the original recipe called for nuts...ewww! :)