Endless Peeps: Chocolate Mousse Marshmallow Cookie Bars

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Peeps. I love Peeps. And I love that the Peeps peeps are creating the sugar-coated marshmallow treats for just about every holiday. I even got a mint-flavored, Christmas tree shaped, chocolate covered peep in my stocking this year. So, you could imagine my excitement when I received a box of a variety of Peeps products at my door. The varieties ranged from vanilla creme hearts, raspberry and strawberry chocolate covered Peeps, strawberry creme Peeps, heartshappd marshmallow Peeps, even chocolate-dipped Peeps.

We loved the Peanut Butter Comfort Six Layer S’mores Bars so much that we decided to create a variation involving peeps…and maybe brownies. After debating chocolate chip vs. sugar cookie dough, we decided to go with a base of a sugar cookie. The result was something between a shortbread and graham cracker crust (maybe because there are whole graham crackers in the middle). Unfortunately, one tube of cookie dough was not enough, so we smothered the rest of the concoction with brownie batter. Between the cookie dough and brownie batter is whole graham crackers, chocolate mousse peeps, and chocolate chips.

Interestingly enough, the peeps kind of spread into every crevice available—even downward into the cookie dough. Every bite has a different texture. Sometimes the crunchiness of the graham cracker comes through, other times the chocolatey brownie and chocolate chips, and other times the gooey-ness of the marshmallow takes over. However, the flavor of the chocolate mousse is quite the complement to the overall taste. One thing I would change? More Peeps!

Chocolate Mousse Marshmallow Cookie Bars

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Can this Banana Bread be Saved?

I have a confession to make.  Despite my mostly-vegetarian, quinoa-loving, local-eating lifestyle, I just don’t like whole wheat flour.  I think whole wheat pasta tastes just like the box it comes in, and every time I try to bake with whole wheat flour, I regret it.  However, we came into several bags of the stuff the other week, and after making some extra nutritious play-dough, I was still left with far too much of the finely ground fiber-fest.  I also had several black bananas, so the next step seemed obvious.

In retrospect, I should have used a combo of white and wheat flour, but in my zealous pursuit of using all of the WW flour, I went a little overboard.  The result was nothing short of brick-like.  It was so dense and dry that even putting a generous dollop of Nutella on every bite just made me wish I was eating the Nutella off a spoon.

Did I mention that I made two loaves of this nasty stuff?  I contemplated just chucking the whole thing in the trash, but I have had a few too many Friday-you-know-what’s lately, so I decided to persevere. 

The Joy of Cooking told me that for bread pudding, you should only use yeast breads, not ones leavened with baking soda, so I went online in search of a different recipe for bread pudding to redeem my sad banana bread.  Just a heads up, it is pretty much exactly the same as the recipe in the Joy of Cooking.  Oh, J of C, why you gotta lie like that?

Anyway, I cut the offending ‘nana bread into chunks, added a few other ingredients, and Voila!  The sweet smell of redemption.

Banana Bread Bread Pudding

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Endless Ice Cream: Cannoli Cups

Here is a marriage of two of my favorite things: cannoli and ice cream. This is a pretty easy recipe: no eggs, no straining, barely any cooking at all. Plus, these cups are adorable, and perfect for individual party desserts. You can fully assemble and garnish them up to three days ahead of time and pop them back in the freezer, in an airtight container, until it’s time to eat. No need to defrost, you can eat them right away. I really like the wonton wrapper cups, they are crispy but not crispy enough to give you Doritos mouth shank.

Cannoli Ice Cream Cups

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Make Way for Fluffertella

Can someone who is allergic to peanut butter really make a good  peanut butter anything besides a quick smear between some jelly and bread? Unless my friends and family are all liars, the answer is yes.

I have to rely on them as my taste testers when it comes to peanut butter treats.  The last one I made was a Fluffernutter (marshmallows, Reese’s peanut butter cups, chocolate chips and Nutter Butter cookies). Although well received by the majority, it did receive feedback from two people that it was too “peanut buttery.” To correct that, this time I decided to try cutting the strong peanut butter flavor with some Nutella. It worked. The Nutella comes through strong enough to taste, but not so much that it overwhelms the peanut butter. As it turns out my friends actually preferred the Fluffertella Bars over the Fluffernutter Bars.

So if anyone gives this a go, do come back let me know if my friends are lying to me.

Fluffertella Bars

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Rice Krispie Squares

Time to celebrate back-to-school season with some kid-friendly, no-bake goodness. But since we couldn’t keep our busy hands alone with the just the classic Rice Krispie treats, we threw a few extra add-ins for a scaled-up version.

Don’t worry  — we didn’t get too complicated. What we did do was add was some peanut butter and chocolate, plus some bananas to cut through the richness, and because three is never a crowd when it comes to those flavors.

So yeah, sit back, have a few bites, and go ahead — wipe your mouth on your sleeve.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Rice Krispie Squares

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