Sweet & Salty Treat

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With the holidays around the corner, you will probably need a little treat.  If you want to make something that’s super fast and super delicious, I have the perfect suggestion.  I’m not sure you could even call this a “recipe” because it requires no baking or even baking skills!  Melt some chocolate, caramel and pour over pretzels.  That’s pretty much what you do!  Here are the ingredients and the instructions:

Ingredients
  • 12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips (I used a chocolate bar I had on hand)
  • 8 ounces mini pretzel twists , half of a regular 16-ounce bag
  • 11 ounce bag Kraft Caramel Bits
  • Sea salt for sprinkling

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Instructions
  1. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Melt 8 ounces of the chocolate chips gently in the microwave (on low heat, stirring every 15 seconds) until smooth.

  3. Spread the chocolate evenly over the parchment. Immediately add the pretzel twists over the top (it’s fine if they overlap!) and gently press them into the chocolate.

  4. Add caramel bits to a microwave safe bowl with 2 tablespoons water and melt according to package instructions (on high for 2 minutes). Stir well and drizzle the melted caramel over the top of all of the pretzels.
  5. Melt remaining 4 ounces of chocolate and drizzle over the caramel. Sprinkle with sea salt.
  6. Refrigerate until hardened.
  7. Cut into pieces, I found it best to serve them in cupcake liners for individual servings.  It looks better than a pile would!

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These are delicious and so easy.  What event is coming up that you could take these to?!  I took them to the Pinterest Party at our church this past weekend and came home with empty platters!
With love from my country kitchen,
Denise Signature 150 px

Bridal Shower & Fun Food

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I love hosting showers – Bridal showers, Baby showers – they’re just so much fun!  It’s great to get a little creative with the display of the food, as well as the decor, but then the food can be a whole mixture of things you wouldn’t normally put on your menu, like snack foods.

I got to host a bridal shower here a couple weekends ago and using the Theme “Fall in Love” I decorated with fall items, and fixed fall-type foods.  Here was the menu:

Chili Bar
Fritos ~Hot Dogs~Crackers
Cheese Ball
Munch & Crunch Mix
Veggie Tray ~ Hummus ~ Ranch Dip
German Chocolate Cupcakes
Cider~Iced Tea~Coffee~Water

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Today I’m going to highlight and share the Crunch & Munch Snack Mix – it was a new recipe to me and I loved it!  From the way it disappeared during the shower, I think everyone else enjoyed it, too!  It’s another Gooseberry Patch recipe. It’s the perfect blend of a little spicy and a little sweet. It mixes up in ten minutes and takes 25 minutes to bake.  I doubled the recipe, and would advise you to do the same.  You have a whole bag or box of each of the ingredients; it only makes sense to use it while it’s fresh!

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup mini pretzels
  • 1 cup corn chips
  • 1 cup oyster crackers
  • 1 cup roasted, salted pumpkin seed kernels
  • 1 cup honey-roasted peanuts
  • 2 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper – I left this out.  Add if you love spicy foods!

Toss together first 5 ingredients in a large bowl; set aside. Whisk together butter and remaining 6 ingredients in another bowl; pour over snack mix, stirring to coat. Spread mix in a roasting pan; bake at 300 degrees for 25 minutes, stirring after 12 minutes. Cool completely; store in an airtight container.

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For the decor, I used large, square flannel scarves as “runners” and then used all my fall pumpkins, gourds, bittersweet branches and even some branches from outside.  I filled a tall vase with the real branches and tied cardboard leaves on.  I asked each guest to take a leaf off and write her best piece of marriage advice for the bride-to-be.

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We had a great time honoring the bride and the fellowship we enjoyed around the fall foods was a special blessing!

I hope you’ll try the snack mix – it would be great for any gathering or even movie night at your house!  You might make up small bags-full for your favorite Halloween Trick-or-Treaters!

If I told you the snack mix was my favorite thing I served that wouldn’t quite be true because THE CUPCAKES…Oh my!  You’ll have to wait until next Monday for that recipe, though.  Until then, enjoy Crunching and Munching!!

With love from my country kitchen,

Denise Signature 150 px

Friday Favorites

What a great week this has been. These days before Christmas are so much fun. Yes, they are full, but full of  blessings! Here are some of my favorites –

What I’m reading:
The Four Streams Bible Reading Plan

I’m almost finished reading through my Bible in a year. What a blessing it’s been to read through the “Four Streams” plan on You Version! It takes you through the New Testament four times, Proverbs four times, the Psalms twice, and the Old testament once. As mentioned here, I’ve been listening to the audio as I follow along in my Bible. That’s been a great addition!

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Projects I’ve worked on…
A blanket scarf.

I bought shirting flannel for $4.50 a yard. I frayed all four sides and folded it in a triangle and tied it in the front. It’s perfect and perfectly warm! I wore it yesterday when it was in the 20’s and it kept me toasty while I was outside!
I did another scarf in a long rectangle, cutting it in half, lengthwise and putting a seam in the middle.

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These were fun projects that gave me two flannel scarves for under $10!

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The most surprising thing I’ve seen…
An Elf!

It’s not every day you see an elf walking down the street! If only I could’ve gotten her to come home and help with the rest of my gift wrapping!  =)  This was at Dollywood where we went to see the Christmas lights and the shows.  Dollywood gives the Gospel in every Christmas show!  It’s wonderful!

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She so sweetly posed for my picture!

What’s been cooking in my kitchen…
Santa Munch

This is a mix of popcorn and pretzels, covered in white chocolate and M&M’s added in! Popcorn is my very favorite snack. This stuff is heaven!

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The cutest recent picture of Liza

Helping me wrap gifts…you know, since the elf couldn’t help!

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It’s not the huge things that stand out – it’s the little blessings God allows that make the days and moments special.  A special verse or chapter of Scripture, a laugh, a crafted treasure, a treat, a curious kitty.  They’re all gifts from my loving Father and I thank Him for each one!

It’s also going to be a great weekend and I’m super excited about what’s planned!
What has a highlight in your week been?

Stay refreshed!

Denise Signature 150 px