Category Archives: Snacks

Macadamia Nut Shortbread Cookies For Mom

Back home in Hawaii, we can get these a~maz~ing Macadamia Nut Shortbread Cookies from The Big Island aka Hawaii Island.  Now that we’ve moved to the mainland, NOPE, NADA, NO CAN GET!  So once again the mother of need raises her head and says, MAKE YOUR OWN!

My Mom no longer lives 12 miles away from my DH and I, so I make up my version of a care package for her every so often.  I’ve added these to her most recent box.

Auntie Doni’s Macadamia Nut Shortbread Cookies

½ C. Macadamia Nuts, Roasted, unsalted and coarsely chopped

1/3 C. granulated Sugar

½ C. Unsalted Butter, softened

½ tsp. Salt

1 ¼ C. Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

½-1 C. Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Melting Wafers

In a food processor, pulse the nuts until ground fine, set aside.  In a stand mixer, cream together the butter, sugar, salt and those ground nuts.  Mix in the flour, just until combined.

Macadamia Nut Cookie logs

Form the dough into two 14 X 3 X 1” logs and wrap them in plastic.  Stash them in the `fridge for 1-24 hours.  Preheat the oven to 350⁰.  Line a **baking sheet** with either parchment paper or a Silpat® Mat (optimum choice).

place slices 1 inch apart

Slice the dough in ¼ inch widths; place on the sheet pan one inch apart.

Bake for 10 or until just lightly golden on the edges.  Place on a cooling rack.  Melt your dipping chocolate as directed on the package.

Chocolate dipped Macadamia Nut Cookies

Dip half of the cookie in the melted chocolate;

Place back on the Silpat® Mat (or parchment paper),

oh my, garnished chocolate dipped macadamia nut cookies

Add optional garnish of ground Macadamia Nuts;

Allow to cool completely, wrap and gift.

ALOHA!

**It’s best to use a light colored baking sheet for lighter colored baked goods**

a lighter colored pan makes for lighter colored bottoms on my our baked goods

Trader Joe’s Soft Pretzel Sticks

Trader Joe's Soft Pretzel Stick

Oh my gravy all over my two scoops rice (that’s OMG! in my world) !!!!

Recently, DH was reading an article in the local newspaper, yes, some folks do still read newspapers, anyways it was about the most popular items at Trader Joe’s.  One of them was their bakery items, Soft Pretzel Stick.  It’s HUGE!  Like a mini loaf of bread.

On my last trip to TJ’s, I picked two of these ginormous “sticks”.  When I got home, I immediately popped them into a hot oven for about 10 minutes, plated them up with some Spicy Brown Mustard for dipping, and WOW!!!

We’ll need to watch ourselves, `cuz we could easily eat these ALOT!!  Next time though, I want to try these with a Cheese Sauce for dippin’.

Speaking of Ice Cream Sandwiches

I was at our local “Wally World” the other day and spied something different in the freezer case.  I recall there being three flavors of house brand Ice Cream Sandwiches, but the Cherry one was calling my name, no really! “Auntie, you need to try this, AUNTIE!!  Even my cashier commented on my purchase, “Uuuuhhhhh, what’s this?  I don’t think I’ve seen this before, this is looks delicious!”  RIGHT?!  Cherries and Chocolate, such a fabulous combination.

That night, DH was poking around the kitchen, as he will do on occasion, looking for something sweet.

DH: Uuuuuhhhh, what’s this?  This looks delicious!

Me: Right?!  That’s what my cashier said too, HA!!!

So it was unanimous, these cuties are superb!

Super Bowl LI Spread

This year, we went over to Mr. & Mrs. Dear Friend’s home for a Pot Luck Super Bowl.  Missus DF and I have come to the conclusion that since they are now GF-DF-Pescetarians, it works out best this way.  So, with that said, my DH requested Stromboli and a “Nibble Platter” consisting of varies Olives, Veggies, Cheese and Salami.

Missus DF had a few more dishes then me.

Super Bowl LI spread, YUM!

There’s Caesar Salad with homemade dressing, yum, beautiful Heirloom baby Tomatoes, GF Crackers, Tuna&Salmon Salad, Baby Shrimp Salad, Green Olive and Anchovy Spread (which was surprisingly good seeing as I don’t care for those little fishies), Deviled Eggs and lastly GF-DF-Tomato Pie with Anchovy filets for the guys (think Pizza only cranked up 100 times).  My DF knows that I am not the biggest fan of Tomato, so portion of the dough is dressed simply with Olive Oil, Rosemary and DF-Parmesan Cheese.

And can see that she was cute enough to even have some football themed paper goods, nice!

What a spread, I mean come on man !  How good does this all look?!

The game was boring (until the end that is), but the food and company was GREAT!

Handheld Spinach & Artichoke Dip Bites

I’m not sure why I didn’t post this recipe and accompanying photos earlier, that WILL make you drool I promise you!  I made this for a cocktail party that we were invited to back in on New Year’s Eve, and I just plum forgot to share, shame on me.

Spinach & Artichoke Dip Bites

Handheld Spinach & Artichoke Dip Bites

Yield: 48 pieces

Dip Ingredients:

1 (8 oz.) Package of Cream Cheese, room temperature

¼ C. Mayonnaise

½ C.  Grated Parmesan Cheese

2 Garlic Cloves, finely minced

1 (15 oz.) can Artichoke Hearts, drained and chopped (not the marinated ones though)

1 C. Frozen Chopped Spinach, thawed and drained well

Bite Ingredients:

2 tubes of Pillsbury® Original Crescents

¼ C. Shredded Mozzarella Cheese (more or less, it’s up to you)

Pre-heat your oven to 375⁰

In a large bowl mix together the Dip Ingredients (I used my Stand Mixer); set aside for now.

Take the dough from one of the tubes of Crescents and gently pull off just half of it.  On a lightly floured surface, press together all of those little breaks in the dough, to make one big square.  Using a pizza wheel, cut the dough into 12 pieces as equally as you can.  Spray a mini muffin tin, lightly, and press each dough square into a cup, gently; repeat until all the cups are stuffed.

Now for the Dip part.  Use a teaspoon to add the filling to the dough cups, don’t over fill them; top with the Mozz, as much or little as you like.  Bake for approximately 12 minutes, the tops will be puffy and golden.  Let them cool on a rack until you can handle them.  Pop each lovely morsel of gooey deliciousness out on to another rack to cool slightly… and serve.

Spinach & Artichoke Dip Bites, well maybe 3 bites

They wouldn’t be around for very long.

ENJOY!

Mexican Themed Foods Continued

Somehow, growing up in the Middle of the Pacific Ocean, I was exposed to a lot of Mexican Foods.  My Dad loved it!  He made it all the time for us, maybe because it was so inexpensive.  The one thing that he never made himself was Chips and Salsa, I LOVE CHIPS!

Not so long ago, I found a large quantity of Corn Tortillas in our freeze, with many packages having expiration dates long past due.

¡CHIPS!

I stacked up my stash of tortillas; cut them into quarters and heated a high-sided pot of Vegetable oil to 375⁰.  How do I know it got to that temperature?  * Cooking Tip – If you dunk the end of a wooden spoon into the hot oil and it bubbles profusely, it’s ready.

Homemade Tortillas Chips, not Salsa though

Fry the tortillas (remembering not to crowd the pan) to GBD (golden brown and delicious); carefully remove to a paper towel lined sheet pan and salt immediately.

Esto es muy picante!

Esto es muy picante!

Serve warm with your favorite dip and as always …

ENJOY!

A Bit Of Home In Central Arizona

It has been a VERY stressful, well, seven months for my husband and I, what with listing our home, open houses, 3 offers to buy our home and finally selling it, MAN!  It’s rough, let me tell you.  So we both decided that we needed some comforts from home, Hawaii that is!

Cucumber Sushi

The first dish I made was Cucumber Sushi, super easy!

Limu Ahi Poke

Next up was some Limu Ahi Poke, MMM!  Now that just screams Hawaii, doesn’t it?

As I always do, I made WAY  too much food.  You know the drill, I gotta share it, so who better than our new landlords.  We’ll just say that Mister Landlord liked the sushi.