Spicy Quinoa Salad

I found this recipe on Cooking Quinoa along with many others I want to try.  Even though this is suppose to be eaten cold - I ate it warmed up.  I am not into cold salads.  This is the first time that I have eaten Quinoa - and it is my NEW FAVORITE!!!!!!!!  I had purchased Quinoa months ago at Hyvee - they have bins where you can buy the quantity that you want.  Dillons also has these.

  • 3 cups cooked quinoa (1 cup uncooked)
  • 2 cups corn
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 T fresh lime juice (this gave it a unique flavor - I probably only put in 1 TB)
  • 1/2 T olive oil (omitted)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp chipolte chili powder (used regular chili powder 1 tsp)
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika (used Hungarian Paprika)
  • 1/2 tsp salt (did not use salt)
Of course I added one diced onion - which is not in recipe.

  1. In a large bowl, combine quinoa, corn, red pepper and cilantro.
  2. In a small bowl combine lime juice, olive oil, garlic, chipolte chili powder, smoked paprika and salt.
  3. Toss dressing with quinoa mixture and serve at room temperature or chilled.
To cook Quinoa - 1 cup uncooked (soak for 15 minutes, then rinse for 3 minutes) and 
1 1/4 water.  Bring to simmer, cover, reduce heat and cook for 20 minutes - turned out PERFECT!!!!  There was no water to drain - all of it is absorbed.  

Then I combined all ingredients in a large deep skillet, covered and warmed until onions were soft.

Chewy Toffee Almond Bars

While making cake pops, I spotted this recipe on the back of the Heath Bits package.

1 cup butter (two sticks)
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/3 cups Heath Bits Toffee Bits
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1 cup sliced almonds - divided
3/4 cup coconut flakes

1. Heat oven to 350. Grease side of 13 x 9 inch baking pan.
2. Beat butter and sugar until fluffy. Gradually add flour, beating until well blended. Press dough evenly in prepared pan.
3. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Meanwhile, combine toffee bits and corn syrup in medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until toffee is melted (about 10-12 minutes). Stir in 1/2 cup almonds and 1/2 cup coconut. Spread toffee mixture to within 1/4 inch of edges of crust. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup almonds and remaining 1/4 cup coconut over top.
4. Bake an additional 15 minutes or until bubbly. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. Cut into bars. About 36.

Cake Pops!!!!

Today I spent 5 1/2 hours making cake pops with my step daughters!  I have to admit that I am exhausted!

I found this great tutorial today when I was searching for why my chocolate coating cracked on some of my cake balls.  Cake Pops Tutorial - I found a lot of helpful tips for in the future.

We made Funfetti cake pops with vanilla icing and Devils Food cake pops with chocolate fudge.  Heather had fun adding the following toppings:  Sprinkles, Heath, M&M's, Twix, Butterfinger (she even put some inside of some of the cake pops)  The Magic Bullet worked great to crumble some of the toppings!

Zucchini Bread

2 cups shredded zucchini
2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
2 tsp vanilla
1 egg
Mix ingredients, then add the following:

3 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon

Bake in a 9 x 13 inch pan.  325 for 30 minutes.  1 hour if using bread pan.

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup sour milk (I used regular milk)
2 1/2 cups flour
4 TB cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups grated zucchini
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)
1/2 cup chocolate chips

In large mixing bowl combine oil, butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla.  Add sour milk and sifted dry ingredients.  Mix until smooth.  Stir in grated zucchini.  Pour into greased and floured 9 x 13 inch pan.  Sprinkle top with chopped nuts and chocolate chips.  Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.