Monday, May 4, 2009

Rocky Road Fudge Bars

These things are amazing! I asked my husband what treat he wanted me to make and he suggested "buffalo chips" with marshmallows. In his family, buffalo chips=fudge bars. Basically, the bars consist of fudge in an oatmeal cookie sandwich. Kind of a turn-off name for such a great dessert. I decided to take him up on it but take it a step further, and added coconut to the cookie batter and both walnuts and marshmallows to the fudge. The result: incredible. I highly recommend them.

Rocky Road Fudge Bars
  • 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup margarine
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 cups quick rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut
Step 1: Make fudge base
In a small saucepan, melt 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips with sweetened condensed milk over medium-low heat until smooth in texture. Remove from heat. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla. Allow to cool. I recommend making the cookie base while the fudge is cooling.
Step 2: Make cookie base
In a large bowl, add 1 cup softened margarine and 2 cups sugar and beat until fluffy. Add 2 eggs and mix well. Add 2 teaspoons vanilla, salt, and baking soda and mix well. Add flour and stir until uniform in texture. Add oats and coconut.

Press 2/3 mixture into the bottom of a 9x13 pan.

Step 3: The middle layer
After fudge base is cooled, add marshmallows and walnuts and stir until thoroughly mixed. Be careful: if the fudge is too hot the marshmallows will melt! Pour the fudge layer over the cookie base and spread to coat evenly.

Step 5: The top layer
Crumble the remaining cookie base over the fudge layer in patches. It will spread, so do not worry about getting a perfectly even layer.

Step 6: Bake
Bake 20-25 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Undercooking is best. Let cool, cut into bars and serve!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Out of Trouble

Last week I spent the first week away from my husband since we'd been married. I had some time off work, and he didn't, so I went home to see my family. However, since I will be commuting to work this summer and there were a few problems with our car he promised to fix them while I was gone. He works as a welder in an auto-body shop, and there are several people at work that can help him fix things when they go wrong. This time, apparently, they weren't able to help him fix them fast enough. My flight home arrived in Salt Lake at 8:25 in the evening. We live about 45 minutes from the airport. When I called to say I was home, he responded that he hadn't quite finished putting the car together. It was almost 11:00 at night by the time I walked in the door to our apartment. Luckily, my husband was sweet enough that he had picked up some flowers for me just to be nice before anything had even gone wrong. Apparently the guys at work told him flowers wouldn't be good enough. They were :) (He had cleaned, too.)

Pizza and Kale Salad

My theory in life is that food is most satisfying when meals are healthy and deserts are delectable. This means that I am constantly trying to cook with whole wheat when I make breakfast/lunch/dinner, but when I am searching for something sweet I go all out. It's my version of balance. However, since getting married I have consistently had trouble trying to find a whole wheat pizza crust that my husband will eat. Last night, I finally did thanks to a few modifications on an artisan bread recipe my dad found. SUPER easy. Combined with the perfect texture of a kale salad, inspired by my hometown's Moscow Food Coop, the meal was satisfying and delicious. Let me share what I learned.

Whole Wheat Pizza Crust

3 1/2 cups warm water (approximately 100-110 degrees Fahrenheit)
1 1/2 tablespoons active yeast
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
6 1/2 cups all purpose whole wheat flour

Note: this is a no-knead recipe (hence the ease factor) and the dough can actually store in the refrigerator for over a week, allowing you to make it once but use it over several days.

To make the dough:
  1. In large mixing bowl (I used a Kitchenaid with a dough hook), combine yeast, warm water, and salt. Don't worry about getting the yeast to dissolve all the way.
  2. Add flour. Mix until combined. The dough should be wet.
  3. Leave the dough, covered but allowed to breath, to rest on the counter for at least 2 hours until it has had a chance to rise and fall.
  4. Place dough in refrigerator until you are ready to use it. Dough will be easier to work with if refrigerated.
To turn the dough into Pizza:
  1. Place pizza stone in the oven. Allow the oven to preheat to 450 degrees Fahrenheit with the stone inside.
  2. Take desired amount of dough and form into crust of desired thickness. Cover lightly in oil or spray with cooking spray. Lay to rest on a cornmeal-covered surface until the oven is preheated.
  3. Place dough on pizza stone and bake 5-7 minutes.
  4. Remove partially cooked dough from oven and cover with desired pizza toppings. Place back in oven and cook 5-10 minutes longer, or until done.

Kale Salad
exact measurements are not necessary


In a small bowl combine the following:

1/2 cup toasted sesame dressing (I used Kraft)
2 teaspoons spicy brown mustard
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 cup light mayonnaise

Whisk until combined.


4 cups chopped fresh raw kale
2 cups chopped green cabbage
1/2 cup diced red onion
1 cup diced cucumber
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup toasted walnuts, or other nuts

Toss the salad with the dressing, and you should be left with an amazing, crunchy and unique salad. This salad would be a perfect dish to bring to a potluck.

The Reason

A few weeks my husband and I were going through the pictures on our computer and my husband made the comment, "The only pictures we have on here are of food, flowers and buggy." (My husband is working on building a mini dune buggy.) It was true! Really, the only things I ever photograph are meals (okay, usually desserts...) that I think look delicious and flowers to preserve the fact that they were really there and beautiful. Since I never write on our "real" blog, I thought I might put these pictures to use as it seemed a little silly to post those pictures as part of our daily life. Enjoy!