Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Homemade Butterfingers

Butterfingers have always been a favorite candy bar of mine.  I used to get them at the movies and I'd nibble on the small squares which came in a huge box and cost about four bucks.  I came across a recipe for homemade Butterfingers and the ingredients may surprise you.  Candy Corn, one pound of it, goes into the recipe.  Plus a whole jar of peanut butter.  Dip it in chocolate and you've got your own Butterfingers.  So because of Halloween and the bags of Candy Corn for sale everywhere, I decided to made some.  Plus, today just so happens to be National Candy Corn Day.  Don't make these if you're dieting because the calorie count would scare you as much as 'Friday the 13th'.  That's why I'm giving most of mine away to friends.  They taste pretty close to the real thing but even richer.  If you have tons of Candy Corn left over from Halloween or you're just craving some Butterfingers, the recipe is below. 

                                                                   Homemade Butterfingers

The recipe I used was found here.

1 lb. candy corn
16 oz jar creamy peanut butter
16 oz pkg. chocolate candy coating

Melt candy corn in microwave on high 1 minute. Stir and continue cooking in 15-second intervals til melted, stirring after each interval. Stir in peanut butter. Spread mixture in an 8x8 pan lined with parchment. Cool completely. Cut into squares. Dip in melted chocolate candy coating. Lay on waxed paper to set.

If you can't find any chocolate candy coating then two cups of chocolate chips will also work. 



                                                             Have a safe and happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Dinner at Tokyo Restaurant

Last night I met up with some friends for dinner in Bellevue at a Japanese place called Tokyo Restaurant.  I hadn't had sushi in a while so I was craving some all week leading up to going out.  The sushi didn't disappoint, I loved my california roll with crab.  I put some ginger on top, dipped it into some soy sauce and yum, that's good tasting sushi.  Sushi was always a food I was sort of squeamish about until a year ago or so when I started getting more adventurous with my food.  I grew up only eating American food like chicken strips and pepperoni pizza.  Now that I'm older, there's not too many food I won't try at least once.   I also ordered a favorite of mine, the fried Calamari.  A couple of my friends got the Sashimi Boat, a huge platter of raw fish.  I've tried raw sushi before but I'm not too crazy about it.  My favorite sushi is the crab rolls.  For dessert, we all got complimentary coffee jello, a small dish of coffee flavored condensed milk with cubes of coffee jello. 

Two different kinds of Sushi-california roll with crab and salmon sushi.
My friend's Sashimi Platter. 
Fried Calamari with Tarter Sauce and Lemon. 
For Dessert-Coffee Jello, a good palate cleanser.

                                               Click here for Tokyo Restaurant's website.  Tokyo Japanese Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Salted Caramel Cupcake from Pinkabella Cupcakes

If you spend any time looking at my blog you know that I have a thing for salted caramel.  It's probably my favorite flavor right now.  I was taking a Sunday stroll through the mall today and came upon Pinkabella Cupcakes.  I was just going to look, but like a beacon in the night, the Salted Caramel jumped out and said, 'buy me!' I couldn't resist so before I knew it, the nice salesgirl was boxing up my treasure for me to take home.  No joke, this cupcake is one of the best I've ever eaten and I've definitely had my share.  The cake part is a dark, moist chocolate and the caramel frosting is so very thick with caramel drizzle and a touch of sea salt. 



Like most people with smartphones, I'm addicted to Instagram.  I actually just discovered it and have been going crazy taking pictures almost every day.  I just can't stop.  Here are a couple fun shots I took today of my delicious cupcake and Pinkabella's display. 

 
 
Taking photos of taking photos.  How fun!

                      Pinkabella Cupcakes's website is http://www.pinkabellacupcakes.com.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

National Chocolate Cupcake Day

Today is National Chocolate Cupcake Day.  Celebrate by baking cupcakes at home, supporting your local bakeries or just get em' at the grocery store.

When I think of chocolate cupcakes, I think of chocolate frosting on chocolate cake.  Double chocolate with maybe some sprinkles or another garnish that wouldn't take over the chocolate.  So to celebrate, I'm going to post a few shots I've taking from over the years of my cupcake craze that I just can't seem to shake.  I probably never will.  I just love eating cupcakes! 


A chocolate cupcake with chocolate frosting and sprinkles from my Birthday in 2007.  These were so moist and rich and believe it or not, these cupcakes were from my local Safeway. 


Oh, Magnolia Bakery, how we love thee.  This bakery in NYC made famous from a scene in Sex and the City, makes delicious cupcakes with oh so thick frosting.  This Magnolia Bakery location in West Village is probably always busy.  The day I visited, it was crowded with people like me, grabbing cupcakes and devouring them.  Gotta have it!  http://www.magnoliabakery.com.


These super dark chocolate cupcakes with white chocolate shavings came from Red Apple, a local grocery store in my neighborhood.  Since 2007, I've been always on the search for great cupcakes.  As soon as I find them, I buy, shoot, and then, eat!


These chocolate cupcakes are from Pinkabella Cupcakes in Seattle.  The cupcake in front is their Classic Chocolate Cupcake.  The one in back is their German Chocolate.  Lots of light, airy frosting tops a dense cake, good stuff.  http://www.pinkabellacupcakes.com.

             I hope I've make you hungry for chocolate cupcakes.  I know I'm craving some now!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Individual Deep Dish Chocolate Chip Cookie

You know those days when you want to bake something?  But you don't want thirty cookies, you want just one?  Today I made myself a chocolate chip cookie in the microwave.  Yeah, baby!  It was so easy, too.   Remember when I made the Chocolate Mug Cake?  It was the same idea and the cookie tasted delicious. 

Here's how I made it:

Individual Deep Dish Chocolate Chip Cookie

1 T. Melted Butter
1 T. White Sugar
1 T. Brown Sugar
3 Drops of Vanilla Extract
1 Egg Yolk
Pinch of Sea Salt
1/4 C. Flour
2 T. Mini Chocolate Chips

Melt butter in microwave for 10 seconds, then add rest of ingredients in small bowl or dish.  Then microwave for about one minute.  Enjoy!

Voila! Cookie dough super fast!




 
I know, I'm bad!  I couldn't resist adding a dollop of Tillamook Caramel Butter Pecan Ice Cream. 
 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

A Visit to Newport, Oregon

While in Newport, we saw some beautiful sunsets and sunrises.  It helped that our motel was on the beach.  We also drove the eight miles to Depoe Bay, which has the world's smallest harbor.  Here are some photos from our trip. 

Sunset on the Pacific Ocean.  On our first night in Newport we checked in and about a half an hour later, we saw this out our window.  Not too shabby. 


The beach in front of our motel where I took alot of walks along the shore.

A seagull at Nye Beach in Newport.
The view from Yaquina Head Lighthouse.
Another view from the Lighthouse.
Sunrise on our second day in Newport.
Sea Lions hanging out on Newport's Historic Bayfront.

Depoe Bay, Oregon.
A boat finishes its day on the water and goes to dock in Depoe Bay's small harbour.
The drive from Depoe Bay back to Newport, looking towards Yaquina Head Lighthouse.
Jellyfish at the Oregon Coast Aquarium.
Coastal birds at the Aquarium.

Newport Eats and My Birthday Dinner at Georgie's Beachside Grill


The Oregon Coast is filled with many great food spots.  Fresh seafood is available everywhere and I definitely took advantage of that.  Newport, where we stayed, had many restaurants and we checked out a few of them.  Of course, being the dessert lover that I am, I had to hit up a couple fudge and sweet shops, too.  Here are a few of the places we ate at, in order, while in Newport.


On our first day in Newport we ate lunch at Nye Beach at the Savory Cafe.  This restaurant had an Hawaiian theme and served pizza, pasta, sandwiches, seafood and more.  Something for everyone. 


I ate the coconut prawns, my first taste of fresh seafood this trip.
My husband ordered the Chicken Curry.  The serving was pretty big so I helped him. 
                                         Their website is http://www.savorynyebeach.com.

After lunch we walked around Nye Beach and checked out the gift shops.  Then my sweet tooth started calling so I got some fudge at Nye Beach Sweets. 



I had the Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel Fudge.  Luckily the piece was small since I devoured the whole thing, it was very tasty.  http://www.nyebeachsweets.com.


The next morning we ate breakfast at the cafe at our motel.  I had the French Toast with Strawberries and yes, I polished off the whole thing.  Then I took a long walk on the beach and walked off the calories (I'm hoping).

That afternoon we took off for the historic bayfront in Newport.  There's tons of restaurants, gift shops, sea lions and tons of things to look at.  We ate lunch at Rogue Brewery, which is right along the strip of restaurants and shops.  We lucked out and found a parking spot right in front of the entrance.  Being Saturday, the bayfront was busy with tourists enjoying the shoulder season. 




As soon as we were sat, the server plopped down these samples of beer for us, free of charge.  My husband also ordered a Dead Guy Ale but me, not being a beer fan, just sipped my free sample. 




He ordered a Kobe beef hot dog which he enjoyed while I got the fresh oyster shooters and the clam chowder.

Fresh Oysters from Yaquina Bay.  I only ordered two but she brought me four.  Expensive little things and I got some shell, eww. 
I loved my clam chowder.  I would order this again!  

Rogue Brewery is located in Newport's Historic Bayfront.  Their website is http://www.rogue.com.

I bought some sweets for my parents at Aunt Belinda's Candies next, also located at the bayfront. 




Since my mom's never tried Chocolate Sea Salt Caramels before (heaven's no!) I bought them several pieces along with some Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge.  For more info about Aunt Belinda's Candies, click here.

 On our last full day in Newport it was my Birthday.  We had a really fun day sightseeing and then we ate a nice dinner at Georgie's Beachside Grill where I tried Fondue for the first time.  I started with salad and bread and then had the Crab Artichoke Fondue as my entree.  Ugh, it was so heavy( well, I was consuming a ton of cheese) I had a stomach ache afterwards, but it tasted so good!


My husband had the Parmesan Chicken which he gave me several bites of.  Now I can see why Georgies was so busy, the food is delicious.  Plus we watched the sunset while we waited for our food.

 



A piece of Chocolate Fudge Cake for my Birthday dessert.  It was so rich that I boxed it up to go and finished it the next day.

For more about Georgie's Beachside Grill, go to http://www.georgiesbeachsidegrill.com.

              I hope you've enjoyed checking out my food photos from my trip to Newport!