Have you ever had a bunny pretzel? Don’t you think it’s about time? This Easter I will be making my family little and big bunny pretzels. I guess it’s safe to say we are pretzel crazy, and why not make it a bunny shape if we can fit it into the holiday. This is the deal. I have been making pretzels pretty often lately and have come to be a dough master in my own right. My Mom and I believe one of the keys to making perfect pretzels is having fresh yeast, and the warm weather helps out too.
The last time I was at Walmart I picked up a small supply of yeast to make another few batches of pretzels. As my dough came to rise for the final time, my mom suggested I make a batch for Easter Sunday. I said “pretzels for Easter?” and she was matter a fact about it all….and said “yeah….shape them into bunnies.” She just wanted another reason to eat my homemade pretzels. I decided to give them a test run and dip them into a sugar cinnamon mixture. Me and Mommy were happy with the results. Thank you Walmart for keeping fresh yeast in stock always…. looks like I’m gonna have a great Easter.
Ingredients for bunny pretzels:
1 – packet active dry yeast
1 – cup warm water plus 1 ½ tablespoons
3 – cups unbleached flour
1 – tablespoon sugar
1 – teaspoon salt
9 – cups boiling hot water
2 – tablespoons honey
4 – tablespoons baking soda
1 – egg
1 – tablespoon water
In a stand up mixer with a dough hook attachment add yeast and warm water to the bowl and allow to sit there for 10 to 15 minutes.
In a separate bowl combine flour, sugar and salt.
Pour mixed flour mixture into warm water and yeast mixture.
Mix on a medium speed.
Dough will come together in about 5 to 7 minutes. Forming a ball shape.
Place dough on a clean surface and kneed with hands for 2 minutes.
Coat a large bowl with vegetable oil and place the dough in the bowl. Cover bowl with plastic wrap, and let rest in a warm place for 4 hours or until dough doubles in size.
Remove dough from the greased bowl, and cut into 8 even pieces.
Roll one piece of dough at a time, by rolling it with two hands to form a long skinny snake like shape. Then carefully shape dough into a bunny shape.
Place pretzels on a baking mat lined cookie sheet and allow to rise for another 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a large pot over a high flame add in hot water and bring to a rolling boil. Once water is boiling add in honey and mix to dissolve. Then pour in baking soda. Mix to combine.
Slowly dip each pretzel into the boiling water for 30 seconds on each side. Then with a slotted spoon remove pretzels.
Place pretzels back on baking mat lined cookie sheet.
In a small bowl whisk egg and water together creating an egg wash.
Using a pastry brush, brush each pretzel with egg wash.
Bake for 11 to 12 minutes.
While pretzels are baking mix sugar and cinnamon together to make a mixture.
Remove from oven and allow to cool for a few minutes, then dip into melted butter.
Let the pretzel drip dry a bit them dip into the sugar cinnamon mixture.
I will occasionally tell my son “some bunny loves you,” and without fail he looks at me like “what does that mean?” I explain to him it’s just a play on words and something a lot of people say quite frankly. Yesterday we were hanging out and he says to me “Some bunny loves you Mommy.” I smiled and said “Is that some bunny you?” He just smiled and ran to the other room… I don’t know if he was embarrassed or thought he used it out of context.
Either way later on in the day we went to Walmart to pick up some supplies and usually I allow him to get a few things while we are in the store. I have to limit him the kid or he will fill up my basket with all his needs and wants. I noticed he was scanning a certain shelve for a while, just staring at the pudding cups and then he says in a sweet voice…. “Mommy, can I get a snack pack?” I said “Yeah, you can,” then he says “Some bunny loves you Mommy, and that’s me.” He stole my heart… he could have gotten all the snack packs he wanted at that point, not to mention they were only a dollar, and have a new easy open lid. He’s so cute, when we got home I decided to make his snack packs into a “some bunny loves you” version, and it’s perfect timing with Easter in the near future.
What you need:
snack pack (flavor of your choice, I used Vanilla)
Remove foil from top of snack pack.
Fill the top with shredded coconut.
Place two chocolate chips for eyes, and a jelly bean for a nose.
Cut a marshmallow in half, then dip the sticky side in candy sprinkles.
Place the marshmallow halves at either end of the cup for ears.
Dig in and enjoy!
Remember some bunny loves you, so pin this snack pack for later:
I always knew it was the start of meatless meals as a young kid when my grandfather would come home with a black ashy cross smeared on his forehead. In my neighborhood many people observed lent, and my family was no exception. My grandfather used to make tortas de camaron with a side of nopals every Friday. That was part of his lent ritual. I must admit I was never a fan, I think the salt like consistency of the grounded up shrimp was too much for my young mind to wrap around, then as an adult…. it just tasted salty to me. Yet I still enjoy carrying on this tradition of a seafood type cake, so as I got older I started making him tuna cakes. I don’t know if he liked them as much as he enjoys tort as de camaron, but to me this is a way better option.
Last week I was making out my Walmart grocery/shopping list for the next 7 days and knowing we are in the thick of lent, thought I would invite my grandfather over for dinner Friday night. I picked up the phone and told him that I was thinking of making him some tuna cakes, and I was on my way to Walmart to wrangle up all the stuff. He said “Oh you’re going to Walmart right now?” I said “Yeah.” He said “I’ll go with you.” It was a win win. I got to see my grandfather twice in one week.
Ingredients for tuna cakes:
2 -cans of tuna packed in water (drained from liquid, and flaked)
3/4 – cup red onion (chopped)
1/2 – cup black olives (chopped)
1/2 – cup mushrooms (chopped)
2 – tablespoons sesame seeds
1 – egg
3 – tablespoons mayo
1 – tablespoon mustard
1/3 – cup breadcrumbs
In a large bowl mix tuna, red onions, black olives, mushrooms, sesame seeds, egg, mayo, and mustard together until well combined. Then sprinkle the breadcrumbs in and mix until mixture comes together.
In a frying pan over a medium flame add a little oil Just enough to coat the pan) and allow to get hot.
Form 1/4 cup of tuna mixture with your hand into a patty. Then drop into pan.
Fry on each side until golden crisp.
Serve with fresh veggies or a light cheese and cream mixture.
Disclosure: I partnered with Frito-Layfor this blog post and was compensated for my photos & original DIY creation.
There are very few things that can take me away from sunny California to a place where it is super freezing cold, in this case Texas. Until of course, LAY’S® Classic Potato Chips calls. Earlier this year I was invited to the frito-lay headquarters in Plano, Texas as a part of a program to help spread the news of this year’s LAY’S® “DO US A FLAVOR®” contest. Without hesitation I jumped at the chance, and soon after me and a few of the other Walmart Moms not only found ourselves in the chilly cold, but also got to spend a day with Frito-Lay Chef Jody Denton in the FLAVOR KITCHEN® creating recipes inspired by our hometowns.
In addition to bringing our regional flavors to life… we also filmed personal videos (see my video attached below) encouraging contestants to submit their hometown flavors and why they are special to them. I couldn’t resist making a spicy mac and cheese as a fusion of who I am and where I come from. Let me explain this contest a little better so I don’t confuse you…. LAY’S Classic Potato Chips has this super fun contest going on right now called Do Us A Flavor, and fans nationwide are invited to submit their ideas for the next great potato chip flavor for the chance to win a $1 million grand prize or one percent of their flavor’s net sales, whichever is higher. This marks the third time the contest has been held in the U.S. This time around, there’s an exciting new twist: the LAY’S® brand is asking fans to also include the location that inspired each potential million-dollar idea. Then, later this year, four delicious finalist flavors – representing flavorful cities and towns across the U.S. – will be fully developed, brought to store shelves and voted on by America. That is so HUGE…. that there is the potential for your flavor suggestion to be developed and tested by AMERICA. You don’t have to be a foodie, flavor expert or chef to enter – you just have to trust your taste buds. There is a good chance if you like it, then other people will too. Do Us A Flavor 2015 awaits.
Submissions are open from January 20 – March 30, 2015. Visit www.dousaflavor.com for more details and official contest rules. Don’t worry, you don’t have to make a video to submit a flavor… you can submit your flavor suggestion on www.dousaflavor.com, or through Twitter (follow @Lays for details), or through the LAY’S® Facebook Page or by using your cell phone to text FLAVOR to CHIPS (24477) and following the prompts. How easy is that? Now get suggesting before the time runs out!
“Don’t pinch me…. Don’t pinch me!” On March 16th I go to bed wearing something green so I am never left to circumstance without a glimpse of green on my body once St. Patrick’s Day is alive and well on the 17th. When I was a kid it was my biggest fear to be without a green article of clothing for the fear of being pinched during the Irish celebration. As I got older I just made sure to make everything green that day and I would be in the safety zone. That included my food.
As luck would have it at the end of the rainbow there is a Walmart. My Mom and I shopped for all good things this past weekend and as I cruised the produce section I found on the shelves sitting side by side a group of asparagus getting awfully close to a gang of leeks…. They had paired themselves.
I told my Mom wouldn’t those two greenies make the perfect asparagus leek soup for St. Patrick’s Day…. she responded by saying ” Don’t wonder about it, grab them and make me a bowl tonight.” I did, and we were so happy with the results. I even convinced my son to eat some by telling him this was the soup Yoda ate (he has a serious Star Wars fascination going on). He took one big gulp and gave me the thumbs up, then sat down at the table and ate a bowl. All of a sudden I was feeling lucky!
It’s that time of the year when I start itching to do something fun with my family. The sun is out and the skies are blue it’s the perfect combo for a day of great family entertainment. I crave for a place with good food, live entertainment, and enough activities to keep a smile on my 5 year olds face…. As luck would have it Knott’s Berry Farm’s Boysenberry Festival 2015 is just around the corner! It’s the ideal spot and meets my criteria of a day well spent. My son is excited to go and play in Camp Snoopy and I’m excited to go and get my grub on. How can I not be when I know I will be tasting Knott’s very own farm-made Berry Market™ Boysenberry BBQ Sauce during the widely acclaimed Boysenberry Festival. The finger lickin’good sauce adds the perfect flavor to ribs, BBQ chicken, chicken wings, and more.
It’s sure to be a boysenberry heaven…. Just imagine boysenberry bites served with fried cheese curds, or a fish and chips sandwich with boysenberry tartar sauce….yes! Did I mention Boysenberry ICEE Floats, Boysenberry Frappuccino and Latte? Now you see why I’m saying it’s the perfect day?
Plus, it’s Knott’s Berry Farm… there are sure to be waffle treats and funnel cakes…. loaded fries…. something for everyone…. I’ll be sporting my stretchy pants without a doubt.
Don’t miss out on this fun festival at the park…. From March 28th through April 12th…all this family goodness can be yours. See you there!
Snacky. Is there such a word? I get in these moods of not really wanting a meal, but wanting a snack that is substantial. I call it being snacky. Since I know I find myself in these hungry states from time to time, I want to be better prepared, because there is no way I want to eat the same thing again and again. With that in mind, I was at Walmart strolling the aisles and came to the Wild Oats section of the market. I have to admit I always get so excited when I come to the Wild Oats section…. why you ask? BECAUSE IT’S ORGANIC and sold at such a reasonable price! Okay back to my snacks and how this black bean and corn salsa came to be… So I’m there scanning all the shelved products…. jarred pasta sauce, canned veggies, pretzels, spices, quinoa, and a ton of other amazing products. My eyes are keep diverting back to the Wild Oats black beans, and my mouth sends little messages to my brain saying it wants a black bean and corn salsa. Fair enough Wild Oats makes corn too. I think it might be extra special if I add chopped tomatoes to the equation, and so I grab a can. As I walk around the store I want to mix in avocados and little cubes of fried panela. I think it might be fair to say I have discovered my perfect snack.
Ingredients for black bean and corn salsa:
1- can Wild Oats black beans (drained)
1 – can Wild Oats corn (drained)
1 – can Wild Oats chopped tomatoes (drained)
1/2 – cup red onion (thinly sliced)
1 – avocado (cubed)
2 – limes (juiced)
1 – tablespoon chile flakes
salt and pepper
1 – tablespoon olive oil
3 – ounces panela (cubed)
Drain the three cans of liquid, then place them in a bowl.
Mix to combine.
Add in red onions, avocado, lime juice, chile flakes, and sprinkle in salt and pepper to your liking. Set to the side.
In a frying pan over a medium flame add in olive oil and allow it to get hot. Then add in panela cheese cubes.
Fry the cheese on each side for about 3 minutes or until golden crisp.
This is part of a sponsored collaboration with MilkPEP and Latina Mom Bloggers. However, all opinions expressed are my own.
That picture above is exactly how I start my day. I need my milk dose to get going in the morning. It’s not just that…. I need to be stronger, faster and on my toes all the time to keep up with my 5 year old son. I live for the kid and want to be around for a long time to watch him grow, so I am beginning this year off by thinking about my health and what I put into my body. Starting with breakfast… they say protein (a glass of milk) at breakfast can help you stay fuller longer so you’re more likely to stick to your healthy eating routine. I love this because heaven knows I can easily get sidetracked. Plus, milk is one of the most affordable sources of high-quality protein you can find. You don’t need to be rich to do something good for yourself. From muscles to hair, bones to teeth, the body needs protein to be strong and healthy, and I can’t think of a more delicious way to meet those needs. Here’s one last little fact: The US Dietary Guidelines recommend eating right, staying active and drinking three glasses of lowfat or fat free milk each day to maintain a healthy weight. And we are back to the healthy weight talk…. that’s the goal. So far so good… I see the numbers dropping on my scale, my pants fitting me better, and my energy level rising enough to keep up with my young boy. I owe it all to that simple little change of having milk in the morning. I mix it up sometimes and make strawberry milk instead. Watch the video below to see exactly how.
Ingredients for strawberry milk:
1 – cup strawberries
6 to 7 – raw almonds
1 1/2 – cups milk
For more recipes, nutrition tips, and more information follow siempre leche on twitter.
Also feel free to participate in the #FuertesConLeche14-day Photo Challenge that invites you to share your photos. The campaign theme Start the New Year off “fuertes con leche” (strong with milk) between February 14 – 28th.
Join me on February 19th from 9-10 PM EST for the #FuertesConLecheBe Your Strongest Self Bilingual Twitter Party.
When I was a little girl, I had the pleasure of living in a house with lots of Aunts and Uncles that had a love for all kinds of different cuisines. For example, my Uncle Luke was really into Mexican food. My Uncle Robert was obsessed with Italian. My Aunt Hope liked any food with cheese. My Tio Ron was a California Cuisine kind of guy. My Mom couldn’t get enough Chinese. She and I would always go to her favorite little Chinese spot in downtown Los Angeles called The Red Dragon Noodle House (it isn’t there anymore…sad face). I vividly remember the first time I ate there because the food was amazing. It totally blew me away at the tender age of 5. What also sticks out in my mind is at the end the meal, a little Chinese girl, about my age, came to our table and brought us almond cookies to enjoy as a dessert. She was extremely sweet and said, “Here you go friend, taste my mom’s almond cookies!” I thought it was the nicest gesture and I was super curious as to what this strange cookie was that she had just offered. I smelled it for about a minute before I decided it needed to be in my belly. From the first bite, I was smitten over this delectable sweet treat. Every year around this time, because of that charming little girl, I always make Chinese New Year almond cookies to celebrate my Chinese friends! I like to head over to Walmart to grab the ingredients I need because I know they’ll have everything and I don’t have to go all over town to find stuff. Happy Chinese New Year everyone!!
I look through cookbooks, cooking magazines, and old recipes all the time in search of something delicious to eat. Sometimes I strike gold and other times not so much. Interesting enough I came across a “baked potato soup” recipe the other day and was shocked when the directions asked for the baked potato to be microwaved before hand. I guess the recipe developer decided to do that as a time saver. I thought I could make a similar soup and just boil the potatoes instead since I don’t use the microwave and still fall under the 30 minute mark. I will make loaded mashed potato cheese soup.
I put my cockiness to the test and ran out to Walmart to buy all my ingredients. When I returned home I set a timer and and was off like a race horse. I imagine that most families have become accustomed to fighting against the clock when they get home from a long day and want to get their broods fed. I decided to put up my fisticuffs and join the battle of making a meal under 30 minutes. I started by boiling the potatoes until fork tender, then draining them and replacing the liquid with broth and milk. I took a serious smash to those potatoes until they were the consistency of mashed potatoes. Then I dressed the whole thing up with sliced green onion and a ample supply of shredded cheddar cheese. Yes, yes, yes…. it all came together in under 30 minutes and my family named me a the soup VICTOR! I’ll take it with time to spare. Enjoy!