Caramel Apple Nut Truffles

Yesterday Mom came over to our house to help pass out candy to the trick or treaters. Since Mom and Dad live on a highway and not a subdivision, they don’t really get hallween visitors.
She totally surprised David and me with carmel apple truffles. They were really good 🙂 sweet and salty. Like a creamy carmel nut apple. Here is her recipe, enjoy!


Caramel Apple Nut Truffles:
Apple bar cookies  10 oz. bag  (found at Dollar Tree)


Caramel apple cups   5 oz. bag  (like a Reese cup)


Cream cheese  8 oz.
Caramel bits  11 oz. bag
Salted peanuts  7 oz can or more

Mince the apple bar cookies in food processor until crumbs, then add the cream cheese, mix well, pour into bowl and cut up apple cups into pieces then stir into mixture. Melt the caramel bits on stove or microwave, process the salted nuts in food processor, roll the apple mixture into a small ball, dip in caramel and roll into the nut mixture. Set on pan or place in mini paper cup. Refrigerate.

Halloween Fun at Work

At the office our bosses encouraged us to dress in costume this past Friday. I had been used to my old organization dressing up, but I had no idea that my new organization would pull out all the stops!


I saw every kind of costume. Scary, freaky, and definitely some unexpcted. Me, I just wore my wedding shoes, aka ruby red slippers and was Dorthy for a day.


There was also plenty of food, but I have come to expect that from this crowd. It was awesome. An entire table of sweets and another table of snack food.


My supervisor Lisa made this dip. It was cream cheese and chocolate icing with crushed oreos on top. It tasted best with the salty pretzels. Oh and Milano cookies for tombstones. Awesome 🙂
Can’t wait to see what next year brings with my new work family.


Quick Post


Writing a quick blog post to test the WordPress app I downloaded to my phone. Hoping this will help me actually post to the blog I pay for, ha, go figure 😛

Quick recap of life since my last post, I got a promotion at work and I got married!!!

Well that’s it for now. Hopefully I’ll post pics of Halloween costume party at work tomorrow, and David’s peanut butter brownies 🙂

Oh What Fun it is to Make a Gingerbread House!

Gingerbread House Collage

This November my Grandma visited, and since she was leaving at the end of the month she wanted to go ahead and make a gingerbread house while she was here. As a way to fit in Christmas fun, even though we were fixing to have thanksgiving dinner. We bought a gingerbread house kit from Michaels craft store, and also used some extra white buttercream that we had in the refrigerator. It was a blast!

We followed the directions in the kit and started to ‘glue’ the house pieces together with royal icing. The royal icing even came in the kit. That was nice not to have to mix our own; royal icing can be a pain to make. It turns to cement really quickly, lol. After the house was together we let it sit overnight. I also used the green fondant and rolled into four columns to place on the house the next day; it needed time to dry a bit. When I came back the next day we started to decorate 🙂

Grandma was like a little kid. She got all excited thinking about the different designs we could do. We ultimately decided to do buttercream on the roof with a shell tip. We made alternating wavy and straight lines on each side of the roof. At one time I had one side of the roof and she had the other 🙂 Then grandma piped the top edge of the roof with one big wave. Better for candy to stick too.

Making gingerbread house Collage

Grandma then showed me how to do icicles! It’s pretty easy really; you take a piping bag with a small hole at the end, squeeze to build up some icing then release the pressure and pull down in one motion. Voila! Icicles 🙂 And again, she did one side of the house, I did the other. After the roof was finished we started piping on doors and windows, and filling in holes in the roof that we saw.

We then started to put candy all over the house. We used fruity jimmy’s for the roof to look like Christmas lights. Grandma really liked the peppermint candies, so we alternated those and gumdrops for the top of the roof. I placed the green fondant pillars on each corner of the house, secured with dots of royal icing. We attached peppermints to the door, and made windows with them. We then placed gumdrops around the peppermint windows as shudders, as well as lining the bottom of the house. The finishing touch was a dusting of regular and purple sugar on top of the roof to make it sparkle.

It was so pretty at the end. We were both very pleased. Our reward was to eat most of the left over candy that came in the kit. It was very yummy! I really enjoyed the entire process of making the gingerbread house. This was the first one that I have made that actually turned out pretty, lol. All thanks to my Grandma 🙂

grandma and me making gingerbread house

A Halloween Cake that Stares Back

I know it’s a month after Halloween, but I thought I would share about the cake I attempted for Halloween this year. I usually play Bunko the month of October with my Mom and some of her friends, and every October they dress up for Halloween. Mom decided to be a skeleton this year and I was a gossamer ghost. The only thing more festive than dressing up was….to make a Halloween cake of course 😛 lol.

Pumpkin cheese ballI decided to make a cauldron of eyeball soup. Sounded gross, scary, fun, and colorful all at the same time. Plus I found eyeball gumballs at the dollar store; so it all worked out, lol. Mom ended up making a cheese ball coated in crushed Doritos and topped with a bell pepper stem to look like a pumpkin. She found it on Pinterest 🙂 I thought it was pretty darn cute.

For the cake I baked two 2 inch yellow cakes with green food coloring to make the cake seem like the insides of the cauldron. I then cut one of the 9 inch cakes smaller to about a 7 inch circle. I saved the extra edges. I placed the other cake on top of the 7 inch circle and then carved so it would more resemble a cauldron shape. I used the extra edges to create the lip of the cauldron. Also, I thought cherry pie filling would be a really good filling for this cake because it sort of resembled squishy, bloody eyeballs (ewwwwwwwww, grosss, lol). So I piped a dam of icing between the two cake layers and placed cherry pie filling in the middle while I was constructing the cauldron.

I then iced the cake in dark gray buttercream. I also mixed up some green, orange, and brown icing. I piped brown icing on the bottom for the cauldron’s firewood, and I used a tooth pick to makes strips through the icing to give a wood-like texture. I striped a piping bag with red coloring and then filled it with orange icing. When I piped that out it was a mix of orange and red for the cauldron’s fire. I had some left over cherry pie filling so I put some on top of the cake. Then I went to piping out the gobs of green goo on the top of the cauldron. I used a tip 12, large circle tip for this. I used that tip for most of everything, except the fire; I used a medium to small shell tip for the fire. After the gobs of green goo were on, I placed the candy eyeballs on top. I felt it needed more color, so I mixed up some purple icing and piped on purple ‘bubbles’ bulging out of the eyeball goo.

Now I considered the cake done, however….lol, the cake had some other ideas. My mom got to my house to get ready for the party, and by then the cake was already starting to lean a bit. You can kind of see that in this picture.

halloween cake and pumpkin cheese ball

Then right when I got to our friend Chris’s house for Bunko, half the cake toppled over in the cake holder! The filling was too much for the soft cake I had made, and I had not piped on a thick enough icing dam in between the layers of cake. The cherry pie filling oozed out in real Halloween fashion, and then the cake just couldn’t take it I guess, lol. The only consolation was this cake was made for friends and they didn’t care. The cake still tasted great to them, and the cherry pie filling just made it look ‘bloody’ and more in the Halloween spirit. Here is a pic of what it looked like at the beginning.

cauldron cake

I take this as a learning experience to be sure and make a stronger
cake before trying to add filling. Also, never try un-tested recipes before going somewhere, as well as build a strong icing dam in between cake layers for filling. With these lessons, bring on the next ghoulish cake! 🙂

Turkey Meatballs

turkey Meatballs

I wanted to eat Italian food but stick with my low carb way of life. So I thought, what is it that I enjoy the most about spaghetti and meatballs??? That’s it! The meatballs 🙂 I felt like going a little lighter on this dish so I used turkey. I also had some sage from my CSA box I wanted to use. Sage and turkey just kind of go together. I know sage is not the most Italian flavor that comes to mind, but it worked in this dish.

I started everything with bacon; the most greatest of starting points, lol. While the bacon was cooking I made the turkey meatballs with egg, parmesan cheese, sage, diced onion, and Dijon mustard. Mixed all that together into inch/inch and a half sized meatballs. When the bacon had rendered all its fat, I started to fry the meatballs until brown on all sides. Then I transferred them into the oven to continue cooking.

This gave me plenty of time to make a marinara sauce to go with the meatballs. I made the sauce starting out with diced onions and carrots. I always remember that Giada De Laurentiis from Food Network likes using carrots in her marinara sauce. So in the spirit of Giada, and the fact I also have carrots from my CSA box, carrots went in the dish. The sauce was very simple and turned out pretty good. I added the onion and carrot to the rest of the bacon drippings and meatball fond. Sautéed them until soft, added my spices and cans of tomato sauce and diced tomatoes. Let that simmer away until nice and melded.

By this time the meatballs were smelling quite awesome. After about 20 minutes I
added them back to the marinara sauce and let everything come together on the
stove top. David and I ate big plates of meatballs and sauce topped with
cheese. A wonderful Italian dinner and we didn’t even miss the spaghetti. I’m
glad my experiment in the kitchen turned out pretty good. I’ll definitely make
these meatballs again. If my CSA box gives me some different herbs, might even
have some different variations! Hooray for variety 🙂

Turkey Meatballs
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Turkey meatballs cooked in marinara sauce. No pasta needed.
Recipe type: low-carb
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 2-4
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 strips of bacon
  • 1 pound of ground turkey, white and dark meat
  • 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 5-6 sage leaves, chopped into small pieces
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg
  • salt, pepper
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz. can tomato sauce
  • 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • Cheese of your choice for topping
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Place the turkey, sage leaves, Dijon mustard, a quarter of the diced onion, egg, and parmesan cheese into a mixing bowl.
  3. Mix until everything is combined, and form into 1 to 1½ inch sized meatballs.
  4. Place bacon in a large skillet with high sides, and cook until fat is rendered out, medium high heat. I usually use an 11 inch skillet. You can reserve the cooked bacon to eat with this dish, or voila! a snack.
  5. Fry the meatballs in the bacon grease until brown on all sides, only couple min on each side.
  6. Place on a cookie sheet, and bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes.
  7. While the meatballs finish in the oven start the sauce; add the rest of the onions and carrots to the skillet. Scrap any bits of meatball fond off the bottom. Sautee until veggies are softened, 5-6 minutes.
  8. Add the Italian seasoning, and cook for about 1 minute. Then add the cans of tomato sauce and diced tomatoes. Scrap any remaining fond off the bottom of the pan and cook sauce stirring occasionally until the meatballs are done.
  9. Place meatballs back into the sauce for everything to meld together.
  10. Top with cheese and enjoy!
I put servings of 2-4 people, because if you added pasta to this dish, you could feed and entire family of four no problem. However, we eat this without pasta so we each had a nice dinner portion of meatballs and two smaller lunch portions for the next day out of this dish.


Broccoli Soup

I bought some broccoli on sale at Kroger and needed a recipe to use it all up. David and I were tired of the same old roasted broccoli. That is where we usually break into florets and lay on a cookie sheet, drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and bake at 450 for 10 min. They always come out nice and toasty, almost having a slight nutty salty flavor. Delicious, but we were ready for something a bit different. So I was looking in one of my favorite low carb cookbooks, Lose Weight the Smart Low-Carb Way by Bettina Newman and David Joachim, and I found a recipe for broccoli soup. I decided to give it a try.

Broccoli Soup

The recipe is on page 131, and is titled ‘Creamy Broccoli Soup with Chicken’, however I did not have diced chicken or chicken breasts to cook, so I decided to use the good ol’stand by, bacon. David and I love bacon. What’s not to like in this salty pork treat! So instead of starting the sliced onions and garlic for this recipe in butter, I fried up about 4 strips of bacon, and cooked the vegies in some of the bacon fat. I then reserved the bacon to place in the soup later, instead of the chicken. The main ingredients in this soup are bacon, onion, garlic, chicken broth, broccoli and sage. The soup is thickened with whole wheat flour and then finished with half and half. I used heavy cream; another low carber’s best friend 🙂 I also liked the addition of sage. It gave a warm earthiness to the soup. I even got to use my organically grown sage from White Oak Pastures. It was in my CSA box I got last Thursday 🙂 The soup turned out very creamy and delicious. Warning, because I used bacon no extra salt was needed in this recipe. I will definitely have to try this with the diced chicken later. Hope you get this low carb cookbook and try this wonderful recipe.

Broccoli Soup 2

Gingerbread Cookies

Gingerbread Cookies

David and I for the past 2 years have made it a tradition to making gingerbread cookies at Christmas time. The first year we made them it was on a whim, because I like baking cookies around this time and had never tried making gingerbread. So I went and got all the ingredients, such as molasses, ground ginger and some others, looked up a recipe on the internet and we set out to make gingerbread cookies. Needless to say it was a huge success. We did have a little learning curve with rolling the dough out, and which cookie cutters that were best to use, but we worked out a system where David would roll the dough out, I would swoop in behind him and cut out shapes and place them on parchment lined baking sheets. We worked like a little cookie factory. It was wonderful.

Then we had dozens of gingerbread men, Christmas trees and bells, that were well…naked, ha. So I had to look up a recipe for royal icing. Luckily the recipe I was using came from Paula Dean, and she had a recipe for icing below the cookie recipe. However I added a cap full of vanilla extract because I like vanilla icing. David loved the icing! How could he not though, it’s pure sugar. So first I tried to use my pampered chef easy accent decorator to pipe the icing on, but it was too runny of an icing. I then tried to place the icing in a zip lock bag and cut the corner out and pipe the icing; that worked better but it was still quick interesting looking gingerbread. So, because David liked the icing so much, we just started to dip everything in the icing. We liked that, so it stuck, lol.

This year David’s sister Donna joined us for the cookie extravaganza. We used colored sugar, sprinkles, and crushed cinnamon candies to decorate this year. They turned out so pretty! I hope you enjoy the pictures of cookies, and try Paula Dean’s recipe for gingerbread cookies. They are not too strong, and taste great with plenty of David approved, royal icing.

Buffalo Chicken Wings with Kohlrabi Slaw

chicken wings and slaw

This was one of my first dinners using the ingredients from my CSA box from White Oak Pastures. I had a lot of fun using the chicken wings to make, well…chicken wings; of course buffalo style. I like using Texas Pete hot sauce for mine.

However, I did not know what to do with this strange new vegetable: kohlrabi. It was strange, purple, but when you cut it open it smelled and looked like a broccoli stalk. So I googled some recipes and people just loved using it shredded in a slaw. So I came up with my own rendition. It turned out great! What a wonderful discovery this vegetable was; I don’t know if I’ll go back to normal cole-slaw ever again. My boyfriend David did give the slaw a try and said it tasted good. That’s a pretty nice complement coming from a guy who doesn’t like slaw’s in general. I’ll take that as a win. He does not like chicken wings however, so more for me. They turned out great too. Can’t go wrong with butter and hot sauce. Recipes follow, hope you enjoy!

Buffalo Chicken Wings with Kohlrabi Slaw
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Organic chicken wings coated in hot sauce and butter baked in the oven, accompanied by fresh kohlrabi slaw.
Recipe type: southern
Serves: 4
  • 2 lb organic chicken wings
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 cup Texas Pete buffalo style hot sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp. onion powder
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 Kohlrabi bulbs, peeled and shredded
  • 1 small carrot, peeled and shredded
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • ½ cup creamy ranch dressing
  • 1 tsp. celery seeds (or to taste)
  • salt and pepper
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • splash of apple cider vinegar
  1. Place chicken wings in a large bowl. Sprinkle the onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper on the chicken to coat. Melt the stick of butter in the microwave. Pour butter and hot sauce over chicken wings to coat evenly. Place wings evenly spread out on a cookie sheet. Place in a preheated 400 degree oven for about 35 minutes, until chicken reaches 160 degrees.
  2. While chicken is cooking start making the slaw by peeling and shredding the kohlrabi and carrot with a food processor. Place in a bowl and toss with lemon juice, salt, pepper. Add mayonnaise, creamy ranch dressing, and celery seeds. Finally add a splash of apple cider vinegar. Make sure everything is mixed well, and taste for seasoning. You can let it sit in the refrigerator until the chicken is done baking in the oven.


First CSA Vegtable box

White Oak CSA Dec 2012

I recently bought a ‘community supported agriculture’ (CSA) share from White Oak Pastures farm in Bluffton, GA. I’ve been wanting to do this for a while now. The idea of getting a box of surprise vegetables is like Christmas morning to me. (I know, such a foodie). I was not disappointed. My first box was full of winter greens, as well as some late summer eggplants and peppers. Here is a complete list of what came in the box here on the White Oak Pasture’s blog. I’ll also be sure to make future posts as I start to cook all these wonderful veg. The best part is that all I had to do was go to the international city farmer’s market in Warner Robins after work to pick it up. Very convenient!

That’s not all, I also wanted to try out organic grass fed meat. So I bought a meat share as well. This week we got our cooler box full of chicken wings, two NY strip steaks, 1 pound of ground chicken, and 1 pound of ground beef. Can’t wait to have a burger off, or even a steak off with normal grocery store beef. I want to see if there is a big taste difference. If David, my boyfriend, and I like the new beef we might even take a field trip to Bluffton and buy an entire cow; store it in the freezer!

This is very exciting to me to be eating more ‘farm to table’ style. The fact I know where the food came from is just plain neat to me. If White Oak raised pork as well I’d be set. However, this is the first organic farm I have tried out. There are many more local options the more I keep looking; I had no idea. There is Evergreen East, in Twiggs County Ga. I know them mostly for their pork, but I think they raise cows as well. I’ve also heard of Davis farms in Roberta, GA. Definitely will have to give them a try.

So many options, can’t wait to try them all!

Cooking for Family and Friends