This is by far one of the most delicious sides I’ve ever made- it’s so good, in fact, that tonight, this will most likely be my entire dinner! 😉

It’s really simple too- you just need 4o minutes to bake the sweet potatoes, but the prep literally took about 5 minutes.

Anyway, here’s the recipe, from

  • 4 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/3 cup fresh thyme leaves, plus 6 thyme sprigs for garnish
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Preheat oven to 450°F. In large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and toss. Arrange potato slices in single layer on heavyweight rimmed baking sheet or in 13×9-inch baking dish. Place on top rack of oven and roast until tender and slightly browned, about 40 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature, garnished with thyme sprigs.
Headed into the oven:
And, after roasting for 40-all done!
* Omgoodness, I can’t stop drooling- this is so good! *
You need to make these! 🙂
(I don’t know what’s going on w/the spacing…annoying!)

Ok, I feel like lately, this blog is turning into a cry-for-help, in that…I cannot stop making all the bad-for-you desserts that we’re supposed to avoid!  And, it’s ten-zillion times worse when I make it, and it stays in my house for me and the family to eat, bc I don’t know about you, but that generally means that the kids will have some, E might have one piece or so, and yea, the rest is mine by default.  Gross.

Still, seeing (and drooling over) a fudge recipe on Pinterest is a sure-fire recipe for bathing suit-season disaster.  But, thankfully, that dreaded season is still months away, so bring on the homemade fudge! 😉

So, this truly couldn’t be easier- melt chocolate chips w/condensed milk and a dash of salt; remove from heat and add in some vanilla extract.  Tada, fudge.

I’m pretty suspicious, so we’ll see- but the best part of this “we’ll see” is that the fudge has to cool for about 2 hrs, bringing it well past the kids bedtime.  Oh well, guess I’ll have to be the taste-tester this time! 😉

Be back in a bit!


So…my “I’ll be back” turned into two years– sorry! 😉

This was a tricky recipe bc it seemed to change dramatically w/temperature.  Initially from the fridge, it tasted good but seemed like I had just put chocolate frosting in the fridge; it wasn’t “fudge-y,” just chocolately and sweet.  However, after the ride to my parents house (about an hour and a half), I tried it again, and it was GREAT- even the consistency was perfect.  But then…later that night, out of the fridge for a few hours, the vanilla seemed so overpowering and actually kinda gross.

So, if you know just when you’d like to serve this (down to the hour!), this is a great recipe, especially bc it’s crazy-easy!  But, it’s really difficult to judge how it’ll turn out over time, so I may just keep on searching for a fudge recipe! 🙂

These just looked too fun not to make- even though I’m not really a s’mores fan (it’s the marshmellows).  I’m a cute-dessert fan, and a chocolate fan, and…well, the kids thought this was a fun project, especially as it meant they got sweets before bed.

I broke a graham cracker in half, then cut a large marshmellow in half and stuck it sticky-side down to the cracker (oh, and please ignore the ugliest cookie sheet ever- the “good” ones were in the dishwasher!).

Then, into the broiler (on low) they went for literally two minutes- keep an eye on them bc one minute they’re fine, the next, burning.  Once you see a bit of brown, turn the pan- I had to, bc the marshmellows in the back weren’t browning, while the others were nearly burnt.

Then, once everything seems as dark as you’d like, take ’em out and pop on a Hershey kiss- three minutes tops from start to finish, and how cute is this?

The kids really loved this project- although a few of the s’mores ended up losing their kisses 🙂

And, being too little for s’mores doesn’t mean that you miss out on dessert- you just get a giant marshmellow to drool over!

E “customized” his s’mores…by adding French vanilla ice cream and some strawberries…yum:

Definitely a fun treat- and, for three minutes of prep time, totally worth it!

This is something I’d wanted to try forever, but didn’t bc I was scared off.  Who knows why, but anyway, I avoided making apple butter.  Never again- especially now that I found a slow-cooker recipe! 🙂

The only bad thing about this recipe is that it takes a total of 12 hrs.  And, since I’m scared of leaving my slow-cooker on while we’re asleep, I had to start this pretty early.  (Well, it’s only 8am, but it’s still early to be thinking about cooking projects!)

Peel, core, and chop 2.5 lbs apples- they suggest using a mix to create a more complex flavor, and I normally would have done that, but we had loads of Fuji apples lying around, so I didn’t get fancy w/it.  Also, I used more apples than in the recipe, only bc mine were tiny, and the recipe was for large apples.

Then, add in white sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg- and cook on low (stirring occasionally) for 10 hrs:

Be back in…oh, forever, w/an update! 😉


Ok, so I started at 8, and it was finally ready at 6pm.  But, I totally forgot about it, since I’d been smelling it all day, and didn’t remember it until nearly 7!  (Oops!)  After the 10-hr cook, I used a hand-mixer to mash the apples- you’re supposed to use an immersion blender, but I don’t have one.  The hand-mixer was a bit tricky, but I smushed the apples into one side of the slow-cooker, and ran the mixer over them a lot until the mix was pretty smooth.

Then, one more hour of cooking on high.

OH- my apple butter was really thick, almost like paste, and the thought of one more hour of cooking had me thinking I’d just be cleaning a baked-on mess out of the slow-cooker, so I added about a half cup of water, and stirred it in.  Perfect!

E had some after dinner, and said it was really good- and wow, it totally is!  Definitely using this recipe again! 🙂

Another fun project, courtesy of Pinterest! 🙂  This was the “silly” project I had in mind the other day, that I never got around to making, and honestly, it wasn’t nearly as tricky as I thought it’d be.

For starters, I used pre-made crust, which takes out all the usual pie-making nonsense.  Next, the pies are super-small, so the lattice work is really easy to do!

Anyway, the recipe in the link above is for caramel apple pies- I just made apple.  Cut up about two small apples, mix w/a little bit of sugar, some cinnamon, the smallest dash of nutmeg, and sprinkle w/lemon.  Tada!  Then, cut out circles for your pies (I used one of the kids snack containers bc it was bigger than a glass), and press it into a cupcake pan:

Press the dough into the pan, and add the apples:

Next up, the lattice work.  I made another circle in the dough, and then just cut tiny strips into it. Assemble the strips to cover the apples, and just weave them together:

A little egg wash, and then into the oven (350-degrees) for about 25 minutes.

All done- and, yum!  I only made one, as a tester, and now I’m off to make more!  So cute! 🙂

(Just be sure to really let it cool before trying to take it out of the pan- I lost a bit of the bottom by being too impatient!)


I recently joined Pinterest, and have been loving every second of it- it’s so fun!  Anyway, one of the first things I “pinned” was a recipe for authentic Chick-fil-A chicken nuggets…which I had to try, considering how much the kids love them.  And, as it turns out, the homemade version was extremely popular w/husbands, too! 😉

Anyway, on to the nuggets- cut up two boneless, skinless chicken breasts into bite-size pieces; “marinate” in a mix of one egg and one cup of milk for 2-4 hrs, to soften the chicken.  Then, dredge the chicken pieces in a mix of flour, powdered sugar, salt, and pepper, and fry in…2″ of peanut oil.  I didn’t do this- I really don’t ever wanna deep fry things for the kids, so I just poured some peanut oil in the pan, and fake-fried the nuggets that way.

I made our nuggets in two batches, and learned to use tongs to turn them only occasionally after the first batch lost most of their breading due to too much flipping w/a spatula.

When they’re finished, I put them on a plate w/a paper towel to absorb some of the extra oil:

I’d also made some homemade fries for our Super Bowl meal, but threw in some blueberries w/the finished products bc…our plates looked a little too fast food-ish!  😉

Anyway, these were really good, and E and I ate way too many.  They really did taste similar to Chick-fil-As, and I’m guessing it’s the powdered sugar- sounded weird to add to the breading mix, but that was totally the key ingredient.

The kids, however, choked them down (just barely), and said that Chick-fil-A had better ones. Can’t please everyone, I guess- even if you were trying to!  Still, if you have normal eaters in your house and not super-picky little people, you should definitely make these!

I’ve never made marinara sauce before, but wanted to try it as I had every ingredient (it’s not a huge list), and I bought pasta today from my favorite pasta maker in the Italian Market (they had a Facebook 25%-off fresh pasta sale, why wouldn’t I go?)…so, it was just meant-to-be, really 🙂

I feel funny about posting the full recipe (since I can’t find it online), but I’ll email it to you if you’re interested.  It’s pretty straight-forward, and even uses canned crushed tomatoes.  I used this can that I bought back in September when we went to a local farm:

Anyway, you start off w/a base of chopped onions and garlic w/a little bit of red pepper:

Then, add in the crushed tomatoes to simmer for about 30 mins:

And voila- marinara sauce!  Smells delicious– can’t wait to enjoy it w/our 3-cheese ravioli! 🙂

This is a really great sauce- and, it’s kinda spicy!  Never would have thought of making marinara spicy, but it really works- yum! 🙂

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