Category Archives: food

Happy Halloween Cocktail Recipe: Candy Corn Jello Shots!

 

candy corn jello shots!

candy corn jello shots!

Celebrating the holidays to the fullest was always a very fun and important tradition in my family growing up. Luckily my little sister and I continue to carry on the tradition of making the most out of each holiday in our adult lives and this year she created something so fantastic for a recent pre-Halloween get together she held at her home!  Candy Corn Jello Shots!!!  Enjoy:)

Candy Corn Jello Shots, makes 20 shots

Ingredients:

1 small box orange-flavored Jell-O
3 envelopes Knox unflavored gelatin
7 oz. sweetened condensed milk (1/2 of a 14 oz. can)
2 cups water
1 cup vanilla or cake vodka (add more if you like strong shots)
yellow food coloring
Tall shot glasses

* My sister used this recipe except she substituted coconut milk and whipped cream vodka!

Directions:

Pour 1 cup of water into a small saucepan and pour 2 packets of the unflavored gelatin into the water. Warm the water and gelatin over a low heat, stirring occasionally, until all the gelatin has dissolved (about 5 minutes). Remove pan from the heat and add 1/2 your can of condensed milk to the mixture. Stir until the ingredients combine. Add 2/3 cup vanilla vodka. Cover and set aside half of your milk mixture and evenly distribute the other half throughout your 20 shots (just don’t fill them more than 1/3 of the way full). Refrigerate your shots until firm (30-40 minutes).

When the first layer is firm, pour another 1 cup of water into your saucepan and add 1 packet of gelatin. Warm the water until the gelatin dissolves, remove from heat, and stir in the box of orange Jell-O until that dissolves as well. Add 1/3 cup vanilla vodka. Evenly distribute orange layer on top of white layer and refrigerate until chilled.

When your orange layer is solid, retrieve the second half of your milk mixture and add in a few drops of yellow food coloring. You can also only make half of the milk mixture and repeat the orange layer recipe with a yellow-colored Jell-O instead. You get more of a transparent color when you use Jell-O and a more opaque layer when you use the condensed milk, but either works!

Distribute your yellow layer on top of the orange and put it back into the fridge until set.

A Huge Happy Halloween THANK YOU to my amazing little sister Drew for sharing her delightful holiday recipe with me!

My sister and I celebrating one of many, many Happy Halloweens in the 1980's lol!

My sister and I celebrating one of many, many Happy Halloweens in the 1980’s lol!

You can see the full recipe here as well as a wonderful step-by-step pictorial on abeautifulmess.com

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The Best Meal I Ever Had by Joseph J. Mazzella

The Best Meal I Ever Had

By Joseph J. Mazzella

“What was the most delicious meal you ever had?” That was the question in an online survey that popped up on my screen the other day. I moved my mouse over and clicked out of the survey, but the question stayed with me. As I thought about it only one answer came to my mind: Ramen noodles.

It happened years ago during Hurricane Sandy when 3 feet of wet, heavy snow hit the mountains of my home. Trees were snapped, power lines were down, and my children and I were stuck in the house bundled up in coats and shivering in the cold. We had no heat, no lights, no television, no telephone, and no internet. The meat in the freezer had already gone bad and any food that wasn’t spoiled had already been eaten. All the stores were closed due to the storm too. I felt shaky from not eating and when I looked in my youngest son’s eyes I could see how hungry he was as well.

Thankfully, though, I still had several bags of Ramen noodles. Taking them and an old pot I walked over to my Dad’s house. He had lost power too but still had his propane grill to cook with. I set the noodles simmering on the eye of it and watched them slowly boil. Trudging back through the snow I held the pot gingerly. Then I poured myself, daughter and sons each a big bowl of them. They were so delicious. We ate and ate until our hunger faded and then sat around the table and smiled at each other. It was the best meal I ever had. We all felt so happy at that moment and our joy only grew greater when the power came back on later that night.

I learned something special too from that meal. I learned that the greatest happiness comes from a grateful heart. Since then I have been more and more thankful to God for every blessing in my life. I thank Him for every sunny day, every meal, every smile, and every bird singing in the trees. I thank Him for my heat, lights, and all the modern conveniences we too often take for granted. I thank Him for each new day he gives me here to live, to learn, and to love. I thank Him for His love. And I thank Him too for every adversity and challenge that comes my way, because I have learned to use them as well to grow stronger, better, and kinder.

May your best meal always be the one you are eating right now. May the best you always be the person you are right now. And may you always live with a grateful heart full of love, joy, and God.

 

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Fall Dessert Recipe: Baked In The Apple Pie

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Well hello everyone and Happy Wednesday!

As some of you know, Fall is my most favorite time of the year here in NYC and besides all the beautiful fall foliage colors, more pleasant temperatures, and official kick off to the holiday season, baking is one of the things I look forward to the most.  I love to bake, I love the excitement I feel waiting to see the final result when it comes out of the oven.

My boyfriend and I have determined it takes me about three times making a dish for me to get it just right and although this was the first time I made this dish, it came out so delicious that I had to share it with you!!!  I brought some into my office and my coworkers agreed, this Baked in the Apple Pie is definitely one recipe that will have your friends and family coming back for more!

What You Will Need (makes 10 baked apple pies)

12  granny smith apples,

1/2  cup sugar

2 Tbsp   brown sugar

1/2 tsp  cinnamon

Directions

– Heat oven to 375%

– Cut off the top of 10 apples off and discard. Remove the inside of each apple with a spoon very carefully, as to not puncture the peel (I actually used tools from my pumpkin carving kit I have at home for this part which made it SO much easier and fun to do and allowed me to salvage most of the removed apple to use for the filling!!)

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– Remove skin from 2-3 additional apples and slice very thinly. These apple pieces will give you the extra filling needed to fill the ten apples you are baking.

– Mix sliced apples with leftover apple pieces from previously cored apples (being sure to discard any seeds or harder apple core pieces from apple pieces from the cored apples) combine with sugars and cinnamon in a bowl.

– Fill hollowed apples with apple pie filling.

– Make dough for pie crust (you can also use store bought pie crust but I prefer to make mine homemade using my favorite pie crust recipe you can find here)

– Divide dough into two halves

– Roll out first half of dough and slice into 1/2 inch strips to add a strip of pastry inside the top of the apple almost like a liner to add a little more texture/sweetness to the pie

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– Roll out the second half of the dough and then slice thin 1/4 inch strips to create the lattice on the top of the baked in apple pie.

– after lining the inside of the tops of each filled apple with a ½ inch strip, place the 1/4 inch dough strips on the top of each apple pie to make a lattice and pinch the inside dough strips and outer edges of the pie  together. ( I also cut out heart shapes from the cut off apple tops and baked them for about half the time on a separate cookie sheet and then sprinkled each with sugar after adding to the top of each pie while the pies finished baking.)

–  Place apples in an 13 X 9 baking dish. Add just enough water to the cover the bottom of the pan. Cover with foil and bake for 20-25 minutes.

– Remove foil and with a pastry brush, use some of the drippings from the pies as a glaze for the top of each pie

– Bake for an additional 20 minutes or until crust is golden brown and sliced apples are soft.

apples2

– Enjoy!!!

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