Wednesday, March 30, 2011

My favorite Pina Colada

Winter is not my favorite season.  I don't love getting cold, I'm not a skier, and once Christmas is over I'm ready for spring!  One thing I DO love during winter though, is that American Idol starts!! (cue music here)
For the last 5 or 6 seasons now, a group of gals from my neighborhood get together weekly and "watch" the show. I use the term watch loosely, as there is a lot of talking and laughing going on. And eating. Let's be honest here, that's really the fun part! (Hey, it's not like we're watching "The Biggest Loser"!)  Nothing warms my heart more in the winter than time spent eating laughing with friends and family....

This year I decided to *feature* a new drink every week--it was a good chance to try some new recipes that I don't usually get to make. So of course I'll share those drinks here! The first drink I wanted to share is my favorite Pina Colada recipe.  Whenever we go out to eat at restaurants, I usually just get water, but I often bend that rule for a Pina Colada! And until I got this recipe, the Coladas I made at home were just not as good.  That all changed when my friend Trish made these for us and after one sip I was hooked.

You'll need just 3 ingredients for this recipe, plus some ice. (so, technically, I guess that makes FOUR ingredients)
1 can Cream of Coconut (found by the drink mixers at your local grocers) 
A can of crushed pineapple or pineapple tidbits
Pina Colada mixer (this probably isn't really necessary, but I like to use it because it makes the cream of coconut go farther)
 The measurements are really loose here. I just do it to taste.  In a blender add 1/2 can cream of coconut, 1/2 can pineapple tidbits and juice and pour some of the mixer in. Add the ice and blend away.  Then I taste it and decide if it needs more pineapple or more colada flavor.  One blenderful makes about 4 good sized servings. Make another blenderful with the remaining ingredients and you've got a rip-roaring good time.

All of these ingredients are easy to keep on hand so you can blend up something delicious any time a friend pops in!
Party on friends!

Monday, March 28, 2011

"8" is GREAT!! Cookie Bouquet

My son just turned 8 and that is an exciting birthday!! I wanted to make something special to give him after his baptism. I saw this cookie idea on Sugardoodle a couple of years ago, and knew it would be fun to try! 

To make the "8" cookies, just start with your favorite sugar cookie recipe.  You could also buy pre-made dough, or even the Betty Crocker mix.  I don't recommend the recipes that have sour cream in them (the softest sugar cookie recipes!) they are too soft to stay on the sticks very well.
Yummy, yes; effective, no.
Roll your dough out onto the counter
I got a paper/plastic cup and cut this shape in it. A trapezoid if you will. (Thank you Ms. Greiner, geometry teacher!)

Cut out your figure 8's by pressing the cup one way, then flipping it around matching the cut opening together.

Use a smaller circle/lid (I used a *clean* glue stick) to cut your center circles. At this point, you're probably wondering why I don't just use an "8" shaped cookie cutter. Because I don't have one, that's why! :) If you have one, great! Use it!!

Spray your cookie sheet really well. I put only about 5 cookies on at a time, and they are all at the top of the sheet, leaving room to slide the sticks in after baking. 

When you remove the cookies (don't overbake), you'll want to work fast sliding the sticks in.

I slide it all the way through the bottom circle,up until it's almost to the top circle.  I think you could probably even bake these with the sticks already in, but I've never tried it. And I'm afraid of starting a fire :)
You'll notice the circles have filled in while baking, so I had to cut them all over again with my gluestick.  This is where having only five on a sheet is helpful, as you really do need to work fast before the cookies get too cool!
Using a pancake flipper/spatula thingy carefully slide them onto a cooling rack. You can stack them up after they cool off to make room for the hot ones coming off the pan. I suggest definitely making more than you think you'll need, as some of them do break or the stick doesn't stay in very well.

When you're ready, frost away!  I usually just make a few different colors and spread on. Last time, I let the kids do them all. We just used white frosting and colored sprinkles.

To make it into a bouquet, I just squooshed some floral foam into these cute pots I found on clearance at Roberts last year.  A painted terracotta pot would also be really cute! I put some tissue paper to cover the foam, and started arranging my cookies! It added a cute touch to our dessert table and of course all the kids loved them!  I sometimes am not sure what little gift I could take when I go to a baptism, and I think this would be a huge hit! Go make some today for your favorite 8 (or 80) year old!

Linking up to...

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Basketball Cookies

How "Sweet it is!"
If there was ever any one thing for me to be jealous of, it would have to be my hubby's love of BYU sports! His passion  is usually  geared towards their football team, but this year there is a serious case of "Jimmer Fever" at our house! Playing among the "Sweet Sixteen", the Cougs are looking for a win to advance to the "Elite 8"
                               GO COUGARS!!! Rise and Shout!

These cookies or cupcakes would be a great addition to any basketball party that YOU may be hosting during this March Madness
 I put orange sprinkles on the cookies pictured above, but it just looks like I didn't mix my color well enough!

I made these cookies a couple of years ago for my son's basketball birthday party, and just a couple of weeks ago when it was our turn to bring the after-game treat.  Both times they were a huge hit, and really easy to put together. 
This is one of those times when cheating is quite appropriate. Everyone will be so excited to eat a basketball, they won't care if you ran down to the closest grocery store and bought pre-made, unfrosted sugar cookies and put orange coloring into a can of frosting.  Put a drop or two of orange extract into the frosting if you want, then you can claim it IS homemade.....right?

You will need:
unfrosted sugar cookies or cupcakes
orange colored (maybe flavored?) frosting
about 1/2 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
 1 TB of butter
small ziploc baggie

Frost cookies with orange frosting.  In a microwaveable bowl, place about 1/2 cup of chocolate chips and a small amount of butter or oil. (I don't usually measure, just grab a bit of chocolate and add a small amout of butter or oil to make a smoother melt)
Heat in microwave for about 30 seconds. (You don't want to overcook, or you will burn the chocolate)
Stir the chocolate....for a minute or so even.  The little lumps will continue to melt as you stir. Put back in the microwave if there are still lumps, but only for a few seconds at a time and stir in between!
 Put chocolate into a ziploc baggie, and snip a SMALL bit off the corner.  Practice on wax paper first if you need, and use a steady hand to get good lines.  As you can tell from my pictures, some of them turned out better than others!  I *may* have had to go get a basketball to make sure I did the correct pattern! I think I like it better in the first picture where there is a circle piped around the whole cookie. What do you think?

The nice thing about the baggie is you can just toss it in the garbage when you're done (after you've squirted into your mouth of course!)
Quick! Easy! Delicous! That's how we like it!
Go Cougars!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

You're invited

Hello and welcome to my Happy Little Party!!  My name is Amy and I'm so excited to have my own little corner here in blogland.  I love to celebrate all of life's little joys with family and friends.   And really, aren't there so many things to celebrate!? We don't have to try very hard here at our house...."Hey, it's Tuesday again!! Let's have some cookies!" This blog is to compile my favorite party ideas, cakes, games, and food all in one place.  Occasionally the crafting bug hits me and there may be some of that too.  Thanks for stopping by my party and hope to see you again soon!!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...