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Make your own Salty Chocolate Balls (insert Outdated South Park Joke)

30 Oct
My Chocolate Balls ( candy)

My Chocolate Balls ( candy)

I go this recipe from Facebook. My manger showed me and said we should make them in the store. So I made them the other day at home.  I did modify the recipe. The balls came out Really good almost like fake Reese Peanut Butter cups. and I know what I am giving some of my Friends for Christmas, Deav’s Salt Chocolate Balls. Which are really called Buckeyes, as I was informed by on of my co-workers. But I digress, below is the orginal recipe and my modifications.

Overall the recipe is easy and very delicious. If you are going to a holiday party this year I would say makes these delecious devils and keep the stress low. The do store well and later this month I will try to ship a few to friends to see how they hold up for shipping.

Original Recipe
No Bake Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Balls

1-18 oz. jar of smooth or chunky peanut buter – I prefer smooth
1 – 16 oz. bag of confectioners sugar
1/4 c. butter, melted
chocolate almond bark…
chocolate candy melts
12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips & 2 tsp. shortening

My Modifications
1-18 oz. jar of smooth or chunky peanut buter – I prefer smooth
1 – 16 oz. bag of confectioners’ sugar
1/4 c. butter, melted +1 TBSP
1 tsp. of vanilla
½ cup of mini chocolate Chips
1 box of Milk chocolate Truffles From Harry and David.

In a large bowl, stir together the peanut butter, confectioners sugar and melted butter until the mixture is crumbly. For the next step, the best way that I’ve found to make a smooth filling is to use your hands to mix everything together.
*Add the mini chocolate Chips
Line a baking sheet with foil. Roll the peanut butter filling into 1 inch balls and line the baking sheet with rows of the balls. Set the baking sheet in the freezer for 5-7 minutes to chill the peanut butter balls for easier dipping.
• I let them Freeze for about 20 minutes.

While the peanut butter balls are chilling, melt the chocolate in the microwave in a microwave safe bowl that is deep enough for dipping. I melted 6 blocks of chocolate almond bark at a time, stirring at 45 second intervals until smooth.

Remove the baking sheet from the freezer. Insert a toothpick or wooden skewer into a peanut butter ball and then dip it into the chocolate, turning quickly to cover the entire candy. Place onto a second baking tray that has also been lined with foil. Swirl the chocolate on the top of each candy for a pretty design. Refrigerate until the chocolate had completely dried.
Store the candies in a sealed container in the refrigerator.
**Warning** These little candies are very addictive!!

My Version of Nutella Cupcakes

2 Jan

Nutella Cupcakes


After the were completed.  They looked and smelled Yummy.

After the were completed. They looked and smelled Yummy.


I finally made it back to the Kitchen; it has been a long three months (Intern, Work, and Laziness set in). Cooking and baking have been put on hold and I hope I can do my own late version of the 12-Days of Christmas. First up, Nutella Cupcakes on day one. I found these recipes on several different websites, one was Martha Stewart (Man that woman does everything!) and another one was from, the Cupcake Blog which post pictures and recipes from other bloggers kitchen creations.  They have several versions, so I choose the one that was more like marble cake like.  I am surprised that more people don’t like or have not tried Nutella. Yesterday, I found out my friend won’t eat Nutella cause he saw a kinky type Video with the other people using Nutella. The lady at my job never had it, and was always curious about Nutella.  To me it is one of the most decadent yet simple spread one can ask for. I Love Nutella, I remember when my Aunt introduce it to me. I was on my Peanut Butter kick ( age 6-7), but my family was not big on every time I ate peanut butter I would have a rash, or swollen lips. So my aunt suggested I try Nutella, it was velvety smooth, nutty and chocolate but not overbearing. I was in love.  No itchy, rash or swelling.  So I made modifications to the Recipe I found, and used the wrong type of liquor in the recipe. The recipe I found on the cupcake Blog use Egg whites in the icing. Call me a Novice (NOVICE!!!!), I am never comfortable with Egg Whites so I created my own Nutella Icing to go with the Cupcakes. I hope you enjoy and HAPPY Baking!

P.s. I know they have powdered Egg Whites but Meh.


For the Cupcakes:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking powder

½  tsp baking soda

¼  tsp kosher or sea salt

3 large eggs, at room temperature

2 cups) granulated sugar

1 cup vegetable oil

½ Bottle of Bailey’s Cream hazelnut flavored liqueur or Hazelnut Liquor

1 tsp. Vanilla Extract (optional)

1 tsp. Butter Extract (optional)

1 cup

Nutella, for filling




1 ¼ cup of Butter

3 cups Confection Sugar

2-3 TBSP. Nutella

1/8th  tsp. of salt.



  1. 1.       Preheat oven to 350 F. Line two 12-cup muffin pans with paper liners and set aside.
  2. 2.       Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a medium bowl ( a large mixing cup) and set aside.
  3. 3.       In another mixing bowl, beat eggs and sugar on medium speed until thick and pale, about two minutes. Turn off mixer and add oil, Hazelnut Liquor, and milk.( I also add in the Vanilla, and Butter Extracts and a pinch of cinnamon about 1/8 tsp.) Beat on medium speed for about one minute. Add flour mixture and beat on medium-low speed until fully incorporated, about two minutes.
  4. 4.       Divide batter evenly among prepared pans, filling each cup about 2/3 full. Add a tsp. of Nutella to the center and swirl with a fork.
  5. 5.       Bake for 17-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pans for five minutes, and then remove to racks to cool completely.


  1. 1.       Add Butter mix until light and airy.
  2. 2.       Add in the Nutella and 1 cup of Confection Sugar continue to mix.  Alternate until the rest of the Nutella and Sugar is added. If the Icing is too sweet just add a dash of Salt 1/8th tsp. usually does the trick.
  3. 3.       Frost the cupcakes once completely cooled and enjoy.

The fate of these Cupcakes, I donated them to my Job Bake Sale for Charity. I also gave some to my  Aunt  since she loves NUTELLA. Next up…. I don’t know hopefully my Spice Pear cake, Fake Fruit Cake or Lemon Ricotta Wontons. You have to tune into the next post


Also I forget my References but Martha Stewart Website is one and another blog from the cupcake blog.  Furthermore, was unable to do the 12 days of baking. Life came at me fast and hard. Guest post coming soon.

These are the cupcakes sitting out at the office bake sale.

These are the cupcakes sitting out at the office bake sale.

Happy Banana Pudding!

25 Aug

The finished product!

Banana Pudding!

So last week ,I asked a friend what their favorite dessert was their response was banana pudding. For most people Banana Pudding is the easiest thing to make it takes less than 5 ingredients (Vanilla Wafers, Pudding, Milk, and Bananas). All I can think to myself something so simple can be ruined so easily if you are not careful.  For me making banana pudding is a source of contention since I am not a fan of banana pudding. I feel the banana get in the way of my pudding and soggy wafers at the bottom cause a texture issue should I chew or swallow, but I digress.  So one of my co-workers who won the dessert contest at work, made Ms. Paula Deen’s “Not Yo’ Mama’s Banana Pudding” I read the recipe and thought it should be really good she use Pepperidge Farm Chessman cookies and Whip Cream. Furthermore, I did not have to turn on the oven.  So I proceed to make the pudding. I did add 2 tsp of vanilla extract and 2 tsp of Banana flavor extract (it the baker in me). I used two types of cookies. I used traditional Vanilla Wafers on the bottom and Chessman on top to give it a pretty look. Overall the recipe is really simple.  Layer your cookies on the bottom than you banana. At this point I drizzled about a tablespoon of honey over top of the banana and cookies. Follow the instruction of the pudding (French vanilla pudding and Milk with 2tsp of vanilla), mix. Then mix the Whip cream and Cream Cheese in a separate bowl, here is where I add the banana extract to the 2nd mixture.   I mixed the combo together. At this point I actually sprinkled some vanilla extract over the bananas. I tasted the pudding cream cheese mix all I can say was OMG it was like sex in my mouth. I mean it was creamy, rich; the banana extract made it the perfect flavor with the vanilla finishing it off. It was so sinfully delicious. I coated the pan with the combo, than arranged the chessman cookies on top. I allowed the banana pudding to refrigerate for 3 hours. I ended up making two pans one large and one small.  What were the reactions from this pudding?

Well it ranged from good to OMG:

  • I forgot that extract is made with alcohol so if no heat is applied it still will taste like you guessed it alcohol. This did not ruin the flavor.
  • Most people enjoyed it and asked if I added alcohol.
  • The person I made it for said it tasted happy. Which made me happy, because I wanted to make sure if I made this a smile would come across their face and just have a warm feeling of joy after eating it.

Below is the exact Paula Deen Recipe. Any extra adulteration I made I put optional and an asterisk* beside it. I hope you decide to make someone smile and make this banana pudding.

1   12-ounce container frozen whipped topping thawed, or equal amount sweetened whip (10 oz tube
1   14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
1   8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
2 cup milk
1   5-ounce box instant French vanilla pudding
6-8   bananas, sliced (Used 3 bananas)
2   bags Pepperidge Farm Chessmen cookies * ( I only used 1 bag)

1 Tbsp. Honey* (optional)

2 tsp. Vanilla Extract* (optional)

2 tsp. Banana Extract* (optional)

½ box Nilla Wafers* (optional)


Line the bottom of a 13x9x2-inch dish with 1 bag of cookies and layer bananas on top.

In a bowl, combine the milk and pudding mix and blend well using a handheld electric mixer.  Using another bowl, combine the cream cheese and condensed milk together and mix until smooth.  Fold the whipped topping into the cream cheese mixture.  Add the cream cheese mixture to the pudding mixture and stir until well blended.  Pour the mixture over the cookies and bananas and cover with the remaining cookies.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Recipe courtesy Paula Deen

Yummy! Slap yo’ momma good. Please don’t she may slap you back.

Rub me tender, Rub me right!

17 Aug

Rub me tender, Rub me right!

The following is a product review for broiled/baked chicken wings. I am pretty sure if a cook was to read this they will turn their nose up or dislike how I prepared these wings but I like to keep it simple and tasty.  So I tried three types of rubs from three different places. One was the honey Rub sold at Crate and Barrel valued at $4.95, the next was the tomato, basil and garlic (TBG) marinade from a regular grocery about $1.50-$2.00 (depends on what store I think I paid $1.79). The last rub I tried was from Harry and David, Red Roasted Pepper Rub a value of $6.95.  So the basic recipes call for your meat product (in my case chicken wingettes. I am too lazy to cut up the whole wings to make my own wingettes).  Of course prep you wings properly, do not mix cooked and raw products. Wash your hands constantly and pay attention. I coated the each wings with olive oil than covered each set of wings with their respective Rubs.  The honeys rub and roasted red pepper rub could be applied directly to the coated wing. The TBG called for mixing the marinade with vinegar, and oil. For two of the wings I did add some modifications, for the honey rub, I drizzled honey over each wing and the Roasted Red Pepper wing  with some of Harry and David Sweet Red Pepper Spread.  All wings were marinade for 30 minutes in the refrigerator.  The baking took place I over bake my chicken for fear of Campylobacter, Salmonella, and other bacteria. So I baked the wings at 350* F for 30 minutes covered.  Than changed the setting to broil for 30 minutes than I removed the aluminum foils. So it took about 1 hour.  I was afraid that I would over dry the wings but the amazing thing the wings were still moist and tender.


 1st Place Honey Rub: These were some of the best wings ever. They were peppery, sweet and tender. The extra honey used brought out more of the honey flavor in the Honey rub. The rub was not too salty or overly sweet. This rub is totally worth the money and it covers the wings nicely for that browned appeal. If you are looking for something amazing splurge and get this rub for $4.95 from crate and barrel. These wings were finger licking good.

2nd place Red Roasted Pepper Rub: The one thing I can say about H&D is they do a lot of things well and this is one of those things. The kicker you get a lot of rub for you money. So you can do steaks, pork or more chicken, make it as a dipping oil spice or  as marinade also. I loved the fact that it has a sweet heat which is always good. Not too sweet but the heat is just right to bring out the tenderness of the chicken meat. Also make really good Roasted Almonds.

3rd place Tomato, Basil and Garlic: So what can you expect from McCormick.  The wings were good but it was missing something. Next time, I will add some diced tomatoes to the mix. I think if you were doing Chicken breast and sautéing this would be really good but for wings , it was a little too sophisticated sounding.

Honorable mention goes to: Tequlia Chili Wings. I still need to work out the kinks but the 2nd day you tasted the heat of the chili with lime and was a little tipsy from the tequila.


Until Next time,


Rosemary Almonds

10 Jun
Rosemary Almonds
I Love My 2nd Job! On the weekend I work at a Gourmet Food and Gift Store, every now and then I can make really delicious samples. Last weekend was super awesome, because my Manager, told me to get creative and make sampling fun this weekend.  I was super stoked, however we were sampling snacks. I was thinking, how would I be able to make sampling fun with snack items?  A long time ago (2007-2009) I brought a cookbook called “Party Appetizers: Small Bites, Big Flavors” by Tori Ritchie. One of the recipes in the book is Rosemary Almonds, which is super easy to make; all you need is  butter, garlic, rosemary, and salt, pepper, and Worcestershire sauce.   These almonds have a subtle flavor but are still delicious. The rosemary left the store smelling comfortable, warm and inviting.
Rosemary Almond Recipe:
*1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil to coat pan (optional)
1 Tablespoon Butter
1 clove of garlic, minced or Pressed
1 tablespoon of minced fresh Rosemary
1 ½ cups of whole unsalted almonds
Salt and Pepper
2 teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce
  1. Preheat Oven to 350*F
  2. Add Butter to skillet and melt at medium heat * if you use Olive oil add before the butter.
  3. Add in Garlic and Rosemary , Stir for a few seconds (30s-45s)
  4. Add in almonds, salt and pepper. Stir until almonds are well coated for 1 min.
  5. Add Worcestershire sauce & Shake pan vigorously. Then stir until almonds are glossy(~1min).
  6. Transfer Almonds from the skillet  to a baking sheet and back for 8-10 minutes.
  7. Allow the almonds to cool,than remove almonds from  the baking sheet and Serve.
These almonds can be stored up to 2 days in an air-tight container. Since  they taste so  amazing you won’t need to store them. Great for a quick appetizer when guest come over or if you are trying to be healthy. Even though, I think the butter defeats that aspect of a healthy snack.   This recipe can be adjusted for vegans/vegetarians. Just omit the butter and use Earth Balance Baking Sticks or spread. I would suggest the olive oil based ones since this is a savory snack.
I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as my customers did. I had on customer come back for 5ths .
Also I have to put the joke that was made about the almonds:
Customer: So what are you sampling today?
Me: Rosemary almonds
Customer: Where are they?
Me: We made them in our kitchen.
Customer: So you get paid to prepare gourmet nuts?
Me: Yes, and so far everyone seems to be enjoying my nuts in their mouth.
(I thought it was funny)
*Cool Fact about rosemary is considered an aphrodisiac.  The benefits of rosemary are the ability to ignite lost memories
as described in folklore.  Rosemary is known to increase circulation and increase touch sensitivity. In artist renderings of Aphrodite/ Venus the goddess of love is believed to be clutching sprigs of Rosemary in her hand. During medieval times women use to bathe with rosemary to entice their lovers of past memories. In Shakespeare Ophelia states after finding out about Hamlets death “There’s rosemary, that’s for remembrance; pray, love, remember: and there is pansies. that’s for thoughts.” Rosemary is for love and remembrance.