S’mores – Now With Less Camping!

Smores Dip

You’re welcome and I’m sorry. When you try this Smores Dip you’ll understand.

For those who can’t wait, here’s why: It’s addictive and a super-convenient way to easily eat the equivalent of 7 or 8 Smores in one sitting when you’d normally have 1 or 2.

Don’t want to sleep in a tent? Not interested in being eaten by a bear? Prefer forks instead of eating off of a dirty stick you found on the ground? Good news! None of this crap is necessary anymore! Whee!

I’ve seen variations where the recipe uses peanut butter cups instead of chocolate chips and this sounds pretty amazing. I haven’t tried it yet because frankly, I’m scared. Scared that I will eat the entire thing alone and I try not to do things that I can’t undo and I am positive that I would be wearing that forever.

Tip: A key element of Smores Dip is smooth, melted chocolate. To ensure success, make sure there isn’t any water in the pan at any time and keep all liquids away from the chocolate after it has melted. The first time I made this I added vanilla thinking it was a great idea and it wasn’t at all – The chocolate seized right up and it was then dry and crumbly instead of smooth and melted. It was still edible but it sure wasn’t easy to scoop up with a graham cracker stick.

If you happen to seize your chocolate, here’s some info from CraftyBaking.com on how to fix it or what to do with it if it’s beyond repair.

 

Zuppa di Scarola, aka Escarole Soup

Zuppa di Scarola

This was my mother in law’s recipe until I made a drastic change to it.  Don’t tell her.

It’s been a little while since I posted, we went away for 10 days during the beginning of April to TN and VA and then it’s been 2 weeks of playing catch-up.  If I could be on the road with my guys for 3 weeks out of the month I’d be pretty happy.

Anyhoo, my MIL pronounces this dish as “shka-dole”, as does my husband, and so do I – This way we’re all talking about the same thing.  It also means that the “Zuppa di” and the “a” at the end of “Scarola” are all silent which are a lot of letters to flagrantly disregard. I like to think of them as vestigial, it’s somehow less disrespectful.

Her recipe was delicious and calls for cooking 1 whole chicken per 1 head of escarole in chicken broth.  I used to make it this way until yesterday when I got brilliantly lazy and used a rotisserie chicken from the market. It was already seasoned, cooked, cheaper than raw and if all of that wasn’t enough the grody funky ooky gooey chicken parts were already removed!

I’ll tell her anyway, chances are she’ll like how much quicker it will be ready and she loves me no matter what I do because she’s a swell lady. I’m really lucky like that.

Crab Stew Savannah

Crab Stew Savannah

We discovered Tondee’s Tavern in Savannah during our Thankgiving 2013 vacation.  It was damp and cold as we walked from our hotel across West Bay St to Tondee’s and we knew there was a bowl of soul-warming soup in our immediate future. Tondees had a miraculous dish on the menu called Savannah Blue Crab Stew that we’ve been trying to recreate ever since.  This is real close, y’all!

Like Warm Apple Pie Sandwiches

Apple Pie Sandwiches

You know when your mouth says “more now!” and your stomach says “no mas!”?  This will be one of those times. If you don’t feel like dipping the filled sandwiches in batter just make french toast instead and then spread the apple pie filling on top.  I promise I won’t tell anyone how embarrassingly lazy you are.  Slug.
Apple Pie Sandwiches – From http://www.sharongreen.me – diced peeled tart apples (I use Rome apples but any should do), water, sugar, sugar (separate from the 1/2 cup sugar above), cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice, bread, eggs, milk, vanilla, Confectioners sugar (optional), In a large saucepan cook apples and water over medium heat for 10 minutes or until apples are tender.; Combine 1/2 cup sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon and nutmeg and then stir into apple mixture.; Bring to a boil, cook and stir for 2 minutes or until really thick (this helps when battering the sandwiches). Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice.; Spread six slices of bread with 1/3 cup filling, then top with remaining bread slice.; In a shallow bowl, beat the eggs, milk, vanilla and remaining sugar.; Dip sandwiches in egg mixture. I have yet to find a neat way of doing this so relax and go with whatever you have to do to get the job done. ; Cook on a lightly greased hot griddle until golden brown on both sides.; Serve on plates and sprinkle with Confectioners sugar if desired.; – Recipe courtesy of http://www.TasteOfHome.com[/wpurp-searchable-recipe%5D

Ginger Oh Snap! Cookies

Ginger Snaps

These are so tasty and since ginger is a great anti-inflammatory eating 5 in a row is obviously good for me.  I am soooo not inflamed right now.
Ginger Snap Cookies – From http://www.sharongreen.me – all-purpose flour, packed brown sugar, vegetable shortening, molasses, egg, baking soda, ground ginger, cinnamon, ground cloves, nutmeg, salt, sugar (for rolling cookies), crystallized/candied ginger (optional), In a medium bowl sift together flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves nutmeg and salt.; In a large bowl or mixer cream together the shortening and brown sugar until lightened in color and fluffy.; Beat in the egg and, once fully incorporated, mix in the molasses.; Mix in dry ingredients 1/2 a cup at a time until fully combined.; Refrigerate dough for 30 minutes.; Preheat oven to 375F. While oven is preheating, fill a shallow bowl with sugar for rolling the cookies in.; Using a teaspoon spoon out equal sized pieces of dough and roll into 1-inch balls. Roll each cookie ball in your bowl of granulated sugar then place on a baking sheet leaving 2-3 inches between each cookie.; Press one (or more, totally up to you) pieces of crystallized ginger into the tops of each cookie ball if you decide to use it.; Place baking sheet in the oven and bake for 10 minutes or until puffed up slightly. ; Remove from oven and let cool before serving. Cookies will collapse a little and be covered in cracks – that’s what you want!; – Adapted recipe courtesy of http://www.12Tomatoes.com[/wpurp-searchable-recipe%5D

My Best Chocolate Chip Cookies Yet

Chocolate Chip Cookies

I like my cookies thick and soft but not mushy, firm and dense but not hard.  And when I say “cookies” what I really mean is cookies, Dirty Bird.
My Best Chocolate Chip Cookies Yet – From http://www.sharongreen.me – butter (left at room temperature for 10 minutes (see instructions)), sugar, brown sugar (light or dark is fine), pure vanilla extract, eggs, baking soda, salt, all-purpose flour (Scooped with the measuring cup, not spooned into the measuring cup.), semi-sweet chocolate chips, Preheat oven to 350F.; In a large bowl cream together butter, sugar and brown sugar and stop mixing as soon as it’s mostly combined. There shouldn’t be any lumps of butter remaining.

NOTE: Your butter should be soft enough so that if you firmly squeeze it you can only make a slight indentation with your fingers. Any softer and you’ll have flat cookies. If your butter is too soft pop it in the refrigerator for a bit until it’s colder. ; Mix in eggs and vanilla.; In a separate bowl combine baking soda, salt and flour. Mix into wet ingredients until 95% combined. Fold in chocolate chips, stirring until just completely combined.; Scoop onto the cookie sheets using 2 spoons or, if you have it, a cookie scoop. I use the small scoop from Pampered Chef and it gives me perfectly sized, 3-bite cookies.; Bake for 10 minutes to start, adding 1-2 minutes to the timer until the cookies are a golden brown. In my oven 14 minutes is perfect.; – Adapted recipe courtesy of http://www.DaisyCottageDesigns.com[/wpurp-searchable-recipe%5D