I’ve been trying really hard to squeeze the last little bit of fun stuff out of these last two weeks of August. After all, I just started my holidays so mentally I’m a bit behind everyone else right out of the gate. It seems that while most people are heading back to school, or at the very least back to school shopping, I’m floating around the pool instead of the mall. Small miracles.
It’s surprisingly nice to have holidays later in the summer, even though it feels like it’s a lifetime away while I’m listening to everyone else talk about their summer adventures all through June and July. I’m not a fan of extreme heat or humidity, so when the nights cool off a little bit and the days are still warm but not unbearable, that’s generally when I’m at my most content.
And of course, like every year, I never get done half of the things that I say I’m going to do but that’s OK. Sometimes, the best holidays are the ones where the days are unplanned and the adventures are unscripted. Once in a while you just need to heal the soul without adding in extra clutter. And most often the best things are the uncomplicated things.
A delicious nut free treat for school, parties, bbq's, or just because!
1/2 cup butter (not margarine)
1-1/2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup whipping (heavy) cream, at least 35%
30 - 34 marshmallows
5 cups crisp rice cereal
1/2 cup milk or dark chocolate melting wafers
1/2 cup white chocolate melting wafers
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set it aside.
Over medium-high heat, melt the butter and brown sugar. Whisk together to combine. Bring the mixture to a boil and boil for 2 minutes. While constantly whisking, pour the cream in a steady stream. Return the caramel to a boil and boil for 2 - 3 minutes or until it coats the back of a spoon. Remove the pot from the heat and let it cool for 2 minutes to thicken slightly.
Insert a lollipop stick into each marshmallow. Dip the marshmallow into the caramel and swirl to coat on all sides. Let any excess drip off pack into the pot. Immediately roll the caramel covered marshmallow in the rice cereal. Place the marshmallows on the parchment lined baking sheet . Once completed, refrigerate the marshmallow pops for 30 minutes.
Add the milk/dark chocolate to a microwave safe dish. Microwave on high in 30 second intervals, stirring between each, until the chocolate is melted. Drizzle the chocolate over each marshmallow pop. Repeat with the white chocolate.
Onion rings are a tasty side dish on their own, or serve them up on top of burgers and steaks! Experiment with different flavors of beer from pale ale to stout.
3 Vidalia onions
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 cup corn starch
1 can (8 oz) beer
Canola or vegetable oil, for frying
Peel each onion and slice into 1/4" to 1/2" thick rings. Add the sliced onions to a bowl. Fill the bowl with cold water and let the onions sit submerged for 20 minutes. Drain the water and set the onion slices on a paper towel to air dry.
Prepare your oil for frying by pouring it into a medium-sized, high sided pot. For safety sake, you do not want your oil to be more than 2″ deep, and definitely not more than halfway up the side of the pot. Heat the oil to 375 degrees. A candy thermometer comes in handy here, but if you don’t have one, heat the oil on medium-high heat for about 5 – 7 minutes. Test your oil temperature with a small portion of batter. If it browns too quickly, turn the heat down to medium and wait a minute or two to start frying.
In a bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, and corn starch. Add the entire can of beer and whisk to combine.
To begin, dip 4 - 5 onion rings into the batter, shake off some of the excess batter then carefully drop the rings into the hot oil. Fry on each side for 2 - 3 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove the rings and place on a paper towel to drain slightly.
To Freeze Onion Rings
Once the fried onion rings have cooled completely, line the rings in a single layer on baking sheets and freeze. Once frozen, transfer the rings to freezer safe bags.
To Reheat Frozen Onion Rings
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Line the onion rings in a single layer on baking sheets. Bake for 10 minutes, turning once.