Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Baking is my happy place

I know I've been writing a lot about recipes and food but I'm really enjoying being a wife to a husband who comes home every night. I love to cook and be the domestic diva that I am. :-) Last night we had a party for all the scouts that were in town for mini-camp. Since the guys always work late we decided to do desserts and cocktails for a little after work winddown.

I love to bake so I was pumped when Jon thought that we'll just do desserts instead of a meal. I inherited the love of baking from my mother-in-law. Besides my grandmother, she's one of the best bakers I've ever known. Her recipes are just amazing! There is a dessert called Strawberry Pretzel Salad that she makes that is my favorite!! I've made it multiple times and has always been delicious.....until yesterday. Monday morning I decided to do all my baking so I didn't have to rush around yesterday with baking. My intentions were good but it didn't happen that way. I started off making the pretzel salad but it turned out all wrong. It's a layer of pretzels as the crust, a cream cheese mixture in the middle, and the top is strawberries and jello. Well, my jello somehow seeped to the bottom. I was ticked! I then decided to go to the store yesterday morning to redo the dessert but it happened again!!! Needless to say I had a lot of pretzel salad and NO ONE ate it!!!! They were too interested in my chocolate trifle and cake balls. :-)

The party was a success and I loved seeing all the guys. I have a feeling this isn't going to be our last get together. We're bringing Southern hospitality up to the North. :-)

Strawberry Pretzel Salad

8 oz cream cheese
bag of pretzels
large container of cool whip
2 (3 oz) boxes of strawberry jello
2 (10 oz) cartons of sliced strawberries
1 cup of powdered sugar
1 tbsp regular sugar
1 1/2 sticks of butter
2 cups pineapple juice

  1. Melt butter in a 9x13 glass dish. Mix 2 cups of crushed pretzels and 1 tbsp spoon of sugar to butter in dish. Smooth out pretzels into layer for the crust. Bake at 350 degrees at 8 minutes. Let cool completely.
  2. Cream together cream cheese and powdered sugar then add cool whip. Once pretzels are cooled, spread cream cheese mixture onto crust.
  3. For the top layer, put pineapple juice into medium size sauce pan. Add jello and heat until Jello dissolves. Remove and add strawberries. Pour over cream cheese layer. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

The next recipe was a HUGE hit. It's kind of time consuming but very worth it!

Cake balls

cake mix (any flavor)
frosting (any flavor)
almond bark (chocolate or vanilla)
any topping (coconut, nuts, sprinkles, etc)

Bake cake according to directions. Let cool. (you may want to put it in the fridge to cool off. It's easier to roll up in a ball that way) Once cooled, crumble cake into a bowl and mix in frosting. Use a small ice cream scooper or melon baller and make small balls. Place them on cookie sheet that is covered in wax paper. Melt bark and dip balls into them. Decorate immediately after dipping. I suggest to freeze balls before dipping in bark. It's easier to dip that way!

Another big hit.....

Sweetheart Trifle

1 chocolate cake mix
1 (10 oz) peanut butter chips
4 1/4 cup milk, divided
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/4 tsp. vanilla
2 boxes instant chocolate pudding mix
1 (12 oz) carton Cool Whip
4 Nestle Crunch bars, crumbled

Prepare cake mix and bake in 13x9 inch pan according to directions on box.. In heavy saucepan combine chips, 1/4 cup milk and cream. Cook and stir over low heat until chips are melted. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Cool to room temperature. Combine remaining milk and pudding mixes and beat on low speed for 2 minutes. To assemble, crumble 1/2 of cake into 4 quart trifle bowl. Layer with 1/2 of peanut butter mixture, pudding, Cool Whip and candy bars. Repeat layers. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours. Serves 12-15

That's about all the desserts I made. Oh no....I did do fruit with a yummy dip. All the dip is marshmallow creme and cream cheese blended together. YUMMY YUMMY YUMMY!!!!

I did make a yummy wine punch for the wives.

White Sangria Fizz

1 cup fresh OJ
1/2 cup sugar
1 (750 ml) bottle dry white wine
1 1/2 cups sparkling water, chilled
Garnishes: lime, orange and lemon wedges

Stir together OJ and sugar in a large pitcher until sugar dissolves. Stir in wine. Cover and chill 8 hours. Stir sparkling water into wine mixture just before serving. Yield: 7 servings.


  1. I am loving all these recipe you're sharing! The cake balls sound like a lot of fun! I think I'll definitely have to try that one soon!

    Have you posted any pics of your house anywhere? I want to see!

  2. can tell how different our worlds are...when you said "all the scouts that were in town" my mind immediately went to Boy Scouts. HA!

  3. I haven't yet Jennifer. Will do that soon. :)