Tag Archives: sweets

Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars {tutorial}

My father’s birthday was earlier this week.  Everyone at his work forgot; no one wished him a happy birthday.  (Granted, he didn’t tell anyone, but it is odd saying, “Good morning, today’s my birthday.”)  He came home dejected and sad.  Poor Dad! (Actually, it wasn’t too bad.  To make him feel better, he went to the grocery store and bought a huge steak and grilled it for dinner.  Nothing like meat to make a man feel better!) Today, I thought I would make him some dessert to comfort him, so he knew he was still loved.

One of his favorite desserts is peach pie.  My mom makes a fabulous peach pie, but since I invited them over, I didn’t think it fair that she also bring the dessert.  I love peach pie too, but I don’t love making it.  Pie crusts are hard and take a lot of love and work.  I have to be in the mood to make pies.  I decided to make these bars instead, mostly because I had all the ingredients and didn’t need to go to the store.  And my guess is that you probably have all these ingredients in your pantry too.

Start off by spraying cooking spray on a 9-inch square pan.  Press wax or parchment paper over it, pressing down with your fingers to “seal” it.  Then spray cooking spray on top of the wax paper.  (The first spray enables you to easily take it out of the pan.  The second spray allows you to get the bars off the wax paper.) Continue reading


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Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwich Cookies

Oatmeal chocolate chip cookies have always been one of my favorite desserts.  Growing up, my mom used to make these often and I loved having them in my brown bag lunch at school.  It was a small, loving gesture, but none the less, it made me happy (even when I was jealous of my friends who ate their hot-lunch).  There’s just something about homemade cookies.

I wanted to make some ice cream sandwiches, and when I thought about the “sandwich” part to this dessert, these cookies came to mind.  They are by no means a large cookie, but when you sandwich them between ice cream, they make the perfect, summer hand-held snack.

I decided to use mint chocolate chip ice cream, because is it my favorite flavor, but you could use whatever type of ice cream you like.  (Shoot, you could even replace the chocolate chips with raisins and/or nuts if you like.)  To make these ice cream sandwiches, bake the cookies and let them cool to room temperature.  Have the ice cream sit out on the counter for about five minutes, so it softens up a bit (it’s easier to scoop that way).  Scoop out some ice cream and press it in the underside of one cookie.  Choose a cookie about the same size as the first and press the inside of it against the ice cream.

And there you have it.  A perfect treat on a hot, summer day.  Very simple and very delicious.  Enjoy! xoxo

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches

printable version

For the cookies:
¾ c unsalted butter, room tepmerature
1 c brown sugar
½ c granulated sugar
1 egg
¼ c water
1 t vanilla
3 c instant oats
1 c flour
1 t salt
½ t baking soda
1 c chocolate chips

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Beat butter, sugars, egg, water and vanilla in a mixing bowl with a attachment until creamy, about 3-5 minutes.  Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and mix, on slow speed, until all is incorporated.  Using a cookie scoop, scoop out the cookies and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown around the edges.

For the Sandwiches:
1 pint ice cream (any flavor)
even number of cookies

Set the ice cream out on the counter for about 5 minutes to soften it.  Using an ice cream scoop, scoop out some ice cream onto the bottom of a cookie.  Using another cookie, press the bottom into the other side of the “sandwich.”  Press both sides of the cookies together a bit, to adhere the cookie to the ice cream.  Eat immediately.  (You can freeze the cookies once they are made into a sandwich.  Just put plastic wrap around it, then aluminum foil and place into a freezer bag.)

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210 Cake Balls

My friend Natalie helps run a children’s ministry program, AWANA, at her church.  Today is the last day of the AWANA year, and she and her husband wanted to recognize all the volunteers who help make the ministry possible.  So, she asked me if I’d help her make some cake balls for the volunteers.  Originally we thought to make one large cake ball per volunteer, but eventually settled on three small ones, in the AWANA  colors (yellow, red, green, and blue).  This meant that we were going to make 210 cake balls, as there were 70 volunteers.   I’ve made 60 cake balls before, but nothing like this.  Needless to say, I didn’t sleep well Sunday night.  I was in a little over my head, but at least I had help from Natalie, and her friend Esther, who came over for a bit to see how to make cake balls and to help in whatever way she could.  Here we are making a big mess.

Natalie and I were working in stations.  She was putting the balls in the muffin liners while I was coating them.

We made yellow, lemon, and chocolate cake.  (Yum, except the chocolate.  I don’t like chocolate cake.) Continue reading


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