Monthly Archives: July 2014

Rocky Road Brownies- Bonus!

July 4, 2014



Who doesn’t love a brownie?  I have such amazing memories of my sweet Gramma Buffy’s brownies being at every holiday growing up, and while I can never fully replicate her delicious bites of gold, I’ve taken a stab at a new favorite for our get togethers.  Best of all- it starts with a box!  Brownies, marshmallows, chocolate chunks, and peanuts… in about 30 minutes.  Kids, dessert doesn’t get easier than this…

1. Start off with your favorite boxed brownie mix, and prepare as directed.
2.  Bake as directed, minus 3 to 5 minutes of cook time. (set timer.)
3.  Top mostly cooked brownies with mini marshmallows, chocolate chunks, and peanuts.
4. Return to oven for the remaining 3-5 minutes.
5. Enjoy gooey, delicious, sweet, and salty Rocky Road Brownies.

Picnic Pasta Salad

July 4, 2014


Happy 4th of July!  Summer BBQ’s are in full swing, and picnics are abundant!  We’re getting ready to head over to our block party this afternoon and evening.  For the picnic, I’m taking over my favorite Picnic Pasta Salad!  Easy to throw together, and full of zippy flavor… it’s sure to be a crowd pleaser!   Whip it up for your next get together!

Picnic Pasta Salad
1 family pack of 3 cheese tortellini (I like Barilla)
2 zucchini, diced
1 cup chopped carrot
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
4 green onions, chopped
1 can sliced olives, drained
3 -4 oz sliced pepperoni, quartered
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1 packet of dry ranch dressing mix1/4 cup to 1/2 cup italian dressing (to taste)

Go ahead and cook your pasta as directed. (roughly 10 minutes)
While that’s cooking, I usually prep and chop my veggies.
Once the pasta is cooked, strain and run under cold water to cool and remove extra starchiness.  Drain again, and allow to cool an additional 3-5 minutes.
While the pasta is cooling, throw all of your veggies into a large bowl and give them a toss.  Add in your dry ranch packet, and toss it all again.  Add your pepperoni and  cooled pasta.  You guessed it- toss it all again!  Add 1/4 cup of italian dressing- I like to start small, and add more as needed- always better than overdressing your salad!  Finally, add in your Parmesan cheese, and toss everything together.  Taste and adjust as needed.  Chill for 2 hours before serving.

Happy 4th!

PS: Looking for an EASY and delicious dessert?  Check out the next post for Rocky Road Brownies!