Saturday, July 30, 2011

Cowgirl Crispy Treats



This cowgirl crispy treat is a favorite among the kids at our ranch.
We made these to share with family at a bbq we are having. 


Try these flower inspired crispy treats next time you bake with your kids.








This is how our baking went...



We started off by following the traditional Rice Crispy Treat recipe found online or on the cereal box.  

Melt 1/3 stick of butter in a deep pan.




I like using the Jet Puffed Marshmallow Creme by Kraft, but you can use any kind of marshmallows.

Once butter is melted add the tub of marshmallow creme and stir until thoroughly melted.



We also used the pink stars from a bag of marshmallows to add a touch of pink color to the mix.




Add 6 to 10 colored marshmallows to color the creme a soft pink.


Add two cups of semi-sweet chocolate chips to a double boiler to melt chocolate thoroughly.




Stir the marshmallow creme constantly so that it will not burn.




Add 6 cups of rice crispy cereal to the marshmallow creme and stir until all cereal is coated evenly. Take bowl off of heat.



Spread the mixture evenly into a cookie sheet that has been coated with non-stick spray.  Let cool for 5 minutes.



Use a flower shaped cookie cutter and cut out an even amount of shapes, two per treat. 




If you don't have them eaten by now, prepare for the chocolate!
My downfall.



Dip or spread with a spatula, the chocolate evenly.




Lay popsicle sticks or any kind of flat treat stick in chocolate to set.




Spread chocolate on the other crispy treat and place on top of the stick, like a sandwich!



Before the chocolate has cooled completely, sprinkle on the colored sprinkles.
Lay treats on a cookie sheet and cool completely in the refrigerator so that chocolate can set, and sticks are firm for those little hands.




I like crispy treats when the are fresh, once cooled and chocolate has set, serve to the hungry little monsters you have hanging on your left leg!



These treats would be cute wrapped in a cellophane bag and tied with a ribbon as a party favor or gift.



My little angelic monster waiting patiently to bite into her creation....wait til I get a picture!



Finally!

Yum!







Enjoy these cowgirl crispy treats!


Our kids did!




INGREDIENTS:

6 cups rice crispy treats
1 tub marshmallow cream
6 pink marshmallows
1/3 cup butter
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
sprinkles of your choice
8 popsicle sticks


DIRECTIONS:

Melt 1/3 stick butter on medium heat in a large pan, add marshmallow creme, melt and stir constantly, remove from heat and add 6 cups rice crispy cereal and stir until mixed thoroughly.

Spread crispy mixture into non-stick sprayed cookie sheet and let cool for 5 minutes.

Melt 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips in double boiler.

Cut-out crispy mixture with cutter making even pieces to create a sandwich effect.

Spread chocolate evenly on each side of the crispy cut-out and place a popsicle stick on one side of crispy treat.  Sandwich the crispy cut-outs.  Sprinkle the chocolate that has oozed out of the sides with colored sprinkles and place on a cookie sheet, then place in refrigerator to cool to set the chocolate.

Once cooled, tie decorative ribbon around stick or place in cellophane baggie tied with a ribbon.

Enjoy! 








Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Natural Wonder

Have you ever been to Sedona? 

Sedona, Arizona that is. 

Many think Arizona is a place where cactus, cowboys and Indians live uncivilized.  We do have cactus, cowboys and Indians and some of us are uncivilized, but Arizona is, in my opinion, the best place to live. 


We went to Sedona to get-away-from-it-all and enjoy one of our favorite places to be.  It's special to Vic and I because that's where our love story began, I mean, that's where we were married.


This is how it went...




This is what all of the excitement is about...the red rock formations that Sedona proudly displays.



When you see the red rocks, the magnitude and beauty take your breath away, or put you to sleep like Snoopy on the right who is taking a nap!

Do you see him?


Let me give you a closer look...



Now do you see him?

He's laying on his back, looking toward the sky, his little ball-shaped nose is right on top, then to the right is his stomach, and finally his feet which are pointing straight up.


That's a famous red rock formation for ya!



Sedona is also known for the water that runs through the town and canyons, it's called Oak Creek.  Ir's



Which brings us to the next popular attraction...
Slide Rock

Slide Rock is a natural red rock formation that people are anxious to see and experience.

Deep in the canyons, where the water flows abundantly, it's a place that since I can remember, people have thrown on their "cut-offs," sat down in the cool running water, and slid their booty's down the creek. 



If you like crowds, people everywhere in swimsuits or wet clothes, this is the place to be.

I have experienced it and do love it but I don't like enjoying it with thousands of people.  So don't visit on a weekend!



The red rocks are amazing and spiritual-like.



If you ever had the thought to see something you have never seen before, then Sedona is the place to go.



Okay, I'm done bragging about Arizona!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Me and My Dad


My mom and dad brought me to Oak Creek Canyon, I have been here before but I don't really remember, I'm only two.

My big sisters are out of town on a trip with friends playing on the beach somewhere, I miss them, but I'm happy I have my mom and dad all to myself.

My dad took me down to the creek to show me what the creek is all about, and how cold the water is, and to teach my new puppy how to rock hop.


This is how it went...


Me and my daddy.



Oak Creek Canyon, I think this is the most beautiful place I've been!



 Dad's gonna teach me how to throw sticks and pebbles in the creek.



That is, after I get myself ready to.



Daddy took me to the biggest rock in the creek.  We sat for a little while, then he taught me how to whistle for my puppy.



She's still learning how to rock hop.



I want to put my feet in the water.



I think it's too cold for me today. Maybe tomorrow it will be warmer.


I like it here, so does my mom and dad.

It makes them happy.


I love my daddy and I love to kiss him, but I don't like the stickers on his face.



I love my Lucy too!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Seared Ahi Tuna Fillets with Avocado



What's cookin at the Ranch?


To cure our insatiable appetite for sushi, and lack of a sushi restaurant within an hour's time, we have to get creative with our own take on sushi here at the ranch.  Luckily for us, Chef Jake was on hand to work up a seared tuna that can cure anyone's sushi cravings!


This is how it went...


If your entertaining guests or find some great quality tuna in your market, this recipe is easy and delicious! This serves as a great appetizer or can be used for a meal or atop a salad! You can master this recipe and satisfy your sushi craving while staying at home!



Fresh Ahi Tuna Fillets, yum.

Sushi might not be an old cowboy favorite, but since we were once 
city-slickers enjoying city-cuisine, it's in our blood, we have to have it often!

Or else we might go crazy!



 Back to the tuna...
Choose fillets that are sushi grade, cut thick, and are bright in color.



Drizzle each side of the Ahi tuna fillet with canola oil and rub in to ensure evenly coated.

Yes, I said CANOLA OIL, you'll read why in the directions below.



Sprinkle each side with sesame seeds and a dash of salt and pepper.



Once evenly coated, get them on the grill!



Grill the fillets on medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes per side for rare, and 3-5 minutes per side for medium to done through the center.

For us, it's rare, all the way!


 
 Place sliced avocado, soy sauce and the sliced seared Ahi tuna on a serving plate and enjoy... immensely!

If you want to kick-it-up with flavor, you have got to make wasabi sauce like I did with chicken kabobs.  Wasabi makes this dish taste heavenly!  

Yee-Haw

 This tuna can also be served over some white rice (sashimi style) or even atop a salad! For a light dinner idea, sear some tuna and serve it over an Asian inspired salad with edamame beans, carrots, red peppers, bean sprouts, avocado, crispy romaine lettuce and an Asian style vinaigrette! Enjoy!

Thank you to Jake for this great recipe, I had so much fun cooking, creating and capturing the process with you!


Ingredients:
 
2 Ahi Tuna Fillets
1 Avocado
1 T Canola Oil
2 T Sesame Seeds
Salt and Pepper 
Soy Sauce
Wasabi (to taste)

Directions:
 
1. Start off by rubbing the ahi tuna fillet with canola oil on both sides. (canola oil works best  because of the high smoke point compared to other oils, like olive)

2. Sprinkle the tuna with sesame seeds, salt and pepper, coating both sides of the tuna evenly.

3. On a "smoking hot" outdoor grill, or indoor pan, sear the tuna for 2-3 minutes per side. (allow more cooking time if you like it cooked through the center or less if you prefer it rare)

4. A good trick to slicing this ahi tuna is by freezing it. If you want to get thin pieces from the tuna fillets, freeze the tuna after it's cooked for at least an hour. Those of you who are less patient, slice the tuna to your thickness liking and enjoy with your wasabi soy sauce and avocado slices!
 
This tuna can also be served over some white rice (sashimi style) or even atop a salad! A light dinner idea would be to sear off some tuna and serve it over an Asian inspired salad with edamame beans, carrots, red peppers, bean sprouts, avocado, crispy romaine lettuce and an Asian style vinaigrette! Enjoy!

Recipe by Jake Schmitt
Photographed by BackCountryBelle

Friday, July 22, 2011

Have A Great Weekend!



Enjoy what life has to offer...family, friends and laughter!


Have a great weekend!
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