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Monthly Archives: October 2011

Yummy Halloween Candy made from Nasty Halloween Candy!

I know the food-oriented blogosphere has been abuzz this season about homemade butterfinger candy, and when I happened upon the recipe, it was too strange NOT to try.  Candy Corn and Peanut Butter?!  That’s it?!  What?!  It sounded so easy!  I immediately walked down to the store to pick up some Candy Corn to try it.  Which was momentous, as I had never bought Candy Corn before!

blech.

Line a 8X8 pan with parchment paper (though I think foil would be easier – not a big deal, I just had the paper right there and didn’t want to run upstairs to get foil!).  Measure 2 cups of candy corn in a pyrex bowl and microwave it for a minute on high, stir them up a bit, and microwave it for another minute until they were melty and bubbly.  Immediately stir in 2 cups of peanut butter.  Definitely use a hard plastic or wooden spoon, as the candy corn gets to be an extremely sticky, dense texture.  Then spread it in the prepared pan.

closer...

Stick the pan in the refrigerator for an hour or two until the mixture is set and solid.  Turn out the pan, or lift the parchment/foil right out and set on a cutting board.  Cut into any desired size, such as 1″X2″ for small bars.

almost there...

Melt semisweet or milk chocolate in a bowl.  Dip the pieces into the chocolate using a fork.  I had to dip about half of them, and put the undipped pieces back in the fridge for a little bit, as they softened up pretty quickly.  Another option would be to spread some chocolate on the top of the peanut butter/candy corn mixture while it is setting, and then just cut the whole shebang into pieces.  I just liked the idea of dipping them in chocolate.  Voila! Homemade Butterfinger Candy Bars!  Crazy!  They don’t have quite the crunchy texture of a butterfinger, but the flavor is spot on, and I actually like the chewy texture just a tad more (Justin said he still preferred the crunch).

be patient while the chocolate sets...

Store the candy in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Then go to the store and stock up on Candy Corn, as there is now a reason to keep this stuff around year round!

nom nom nom!

 
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Posted by on October 25, 2011 in Baking, Julie

 

The Best Buffet in Vegas. Period.

We enjoyed another sunny, beautiful day today. We walked to and had breakfast at the Bouchon Bakery in the Venetian (fantastically delicious), walked through the Palazzo, did a bit of gambling on a few nickel slots, then took the monorail down to the MGM, walked through to New York New
York, onto the Monte Carlo, then back to Vdara for the afternoon, swimming and watching the Packers (barely) beat the Vikings. And all that was great, but this post focuses on our dinner, which we just returned from. We couldn’t really decide what we all wanted exactly, so we ended up going with a buffet, and the closest buffet was Wicked Spoon in the Cosmopolitan. In short, it was incredible. It was pricey, but in the end, we all agreed it was worth it. So many choices, each so delicious, and many choices we never imagined could make it onto a buffet and still be amazing. Bone marrow! Prime rib! Pork rillettes! Beignets! Mussels! Fried chicken! Truffled scallop potatoes! Sushi! Mac and Cheese station! Gnocchi with lamb ragu! Salted Peanut Gelato! Mint Chocolate Gelato with Chocolate Pearls! Strawberry shortcake! Macaroons! And oodles and oodles and oodles more. And everything was delicious and refined in a way that it could have been served in a very high end restaurant. If you find yourself in Vegas and are looking for a buffet, make a point to visit Wicked Spoon. We’ve been to a few other buffets we thought were very good, and this blew them all out of the water.

 

 
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Posted by on October 23, 2011 in Food, Julie, Las Vegas, Restaurant Reviews, Travel

 

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A full day, and even fuller stomach!

We had a great day in Vegas today. The weather was absolutely gorgeous, sunny and 85 degrees. We walked (and walked and walked and walked) and ate (and ate and ate) and gambled (and gambled some more) and people watched galore.

A crazy sculpture made out of canoes outside the entrance of the Vdara.

In the Bellagio’s conservatory.

A recreation of a painting done with flowers in the Bellagio.

Trying on some amazing sunglasses, trying to fit in. They didn’t really work with my outfit.

Lunch at Canter’s Deli in Treasure Island. Giant sandwiches and a knish to share. Delicious. And too much.

Taking in a show of the Bellagio fountains and enjoying the sun!

Inside the Wynn. One of my favorite hotels to walk into.

Dinner and Zoozacrackers Deli in the Wynn. We shared Loaded Nachos, Loaded Knish, and Loaded Crispy Potatoes. Our stomachs were soon Loaded!

Ready for the start of Le Reve!

Le Reve’s theater after the show. Simply the most incredible show we’ve seen on The Strip. Highly highly recommended! It may be pricey, but it isn’t rated the best for nothing! So so so amazing!

Walking back to our hotel after the show, we were able to take in a few more songs at the Bellagio fountains. Very entertaining, despite the crushing crowds.

 
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Posted by on October 23, 2011 in Julie, Las Vegas, Travel

 

Girls’ Weekend in Vegas!

Mom, Ruth, and I flew out this afternoon for a fun weekend in Vegas! Since the TCO was in Florida this year, we were missing our Vegas fix! Justin suggested we take a weekend away, and he definitely didn’t have to twist our arms or force the issue! We are staying at a new hotel, Vdara, this year, which is an all-suite hotel. With three people, a suite is a good fit. We have already walked ourselves in circles and are figuring out the City Center complex, but we figure we’ll have it down by the time we leave on Monday morning! Here’re are some pictures from the day.

 
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Posted by on October 22, 2011 in Family, Julie, Las Vegas, Travel

 

A Sunset

Despite a cold, cloudy, and windy day, the sun made a brief appearance. Hopefully this is a promise of a nicer day tomorrow!

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Aye aye, Matey!

I just realized how long it’s been since I’ve posted anything I’ve made here!  So often I am plowing through baking orders and just not thinking about taking pictures!  Well, these cookies were too much fun not to share.

 They are for a little girl’s pirate-themed birthday party.  So cute!  It had been awhile since I have made sugar cookies, so it was fun to work on these.  Especially since Jenn came over to help fill and chat!

Plus, now that we have our iPhones, which have pretty good cameras in them, I don’t always have to run upstairs to grab the camera – one is right in my pocket!

 
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Posted by on October 19, 2011 in A Dash of Delicious, Baking, Julie

 

Five guys

We were in Appleton to run some errands and stopped by Five Guys for the first time. Definitely recommended.

 
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Posted by on October 18, 2011 in Justin, Restaurant Reviews