April 30, 2012

Homemade Salted Caramel Sauce

Gooey, sticky - amber colored deliciousness.  And, with just a hint of salt. 

Salted Caramel.  


A good caramel sauce is so great to have on hand.  You can make it in large batches & can several small jars of it.  It's way better than the store bought kind.  Replace a recipe that calls for the store bought stuff with the homemade - and you have an instant decadence layer added.  Drizzle it on ice cream, popcorn, pancakes, etc.  Or, just dig in with a spoon.  

One of the best things about this salted caramel is the batch of cupcakes that I created with it.  You have gotta check out! (Posts tomorrow, watch for it!!)

Caramel isn't as hard to make as some people think.  Follow along with me!

Put your sugar into a large saucepan.  Turn the heat on to medium, and melt the sugar - whisking often.  Don't leave the caramel!!  You don't want burnt caramel, or make a gloppy mess!

Make sure the sugar is melted completely before proceeding to the next step!!

Whisk in the butter & heavy cream.  Whisk your heart out!!  I like to use a french whisk - it works fantastic for things like this (and for beating eggs). But, that's not necessary.  Be careful, it will foam up!  Just keep on a whisking until it's all smooth.  Turn off the heat, and let it sit to cool about 15 minutes before stirring in the salt & transferring to a jar.

Serve on top of anything that sounds like it will be good!

Homemade Salted Caramel Sauce
(makes about 1 pint)

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons butter, cubed
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream, plus 3 tablespoons
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Melt the sugar over medium heat in a large saucepan.  Whisk the sugar as it melts, never leaving it's side til it turns a deep amber color.  Add the butter & stir until melted.  Whisk in the cream.  Careful - it will foam up!  Whisk until you get a smooth sauce.  You may have some lumps, but keep stirring until they are melted.  Remove from the heat & cool slightly. Stir in the salt.  Store in a mason jar for a week in the fridge, or can & store in a dark place for up to 6 months.  Set in a hot container of water to reheat or pour into a small saucepan to reheat for best consistency.  
Shared with these great blog parties!

April 29, 2012

Makin' You Crave Monday

Welcome to another edition of Makin' You Crave Monday!!  

This week, I'm sharing my Cloud Parfaits!

Here are my favorites from last week.

A huge thank you to everyone who shared last week!  I can't wait to see what you have to link up this week.  Soooo....

Let's get this party started!!


Week 17 - Above the Stove & a Food Declutter too

This week has been stressful to say the least.  I have been experiencing crazy swelling, and got into the doctor to find out what could be causing it.  It was suspected that it could be a problem with my kidney.  Kidney as in singular.  I just have the one.  My first one was punctured when my 6 year old self flipped over the handlebars of my bike & collided with the corner of a stop sign. There was no saving the kidney, and it was removed.  

I'm still awaiting further tests - but I have decided that I need to take some measures myself.  I don't eat much processed food - I cook from scratch most of the time.  But, I'm guilty of having canned veggies...canned cream of whatever soups - and such like that.  Have you ever checked the sodium levels in that kind of stuff?  Whoa. It's high!!  I surely don't need any of that extra sodium with just one kidney - and most definitely don't need it if I'm experiencing problems with my only kidney.  I went thru everything in my pantry, and got rid of all the processed stuff.  Going to do the same to my freezer in the morning, and take it all to the women's shelter.  

So, that's counts as not only decluttering the pantry - but also decluttering my body.  :)

Now - gotta get the top of that stove decluttered.  It's not horrible - but I store some cooking things on top of my stove.  Sometimes those things like to fall down - and it's not so fun when those things happen to fall into a skillet of bacon frying.  

I popped into Goodwill last week, and found this cute little hangable basket for just $1.  I grabbed it up, and just knew it would be perfect for organizing this area.  I ended up screwing it into the wall, just millimeters above the top of the stove.

Things like the cinnamon & the small containers of homemade spice mixes went into my baking cabinet.  The sprays, olive oil, spices, & such that I use frequently went into the basket neatly.  

I'm liking this method lots better!!


Shared with these great blog parties!

April 25, 2012

Cloud Parfaits

My kids love things like desserts, snacks, and special food treats - and I don't always have the time to whip up something.  So, having an arsenal of easy, fast 'special treats' is a great way to combat the whole zero time issue.

These cloud parfaits are one of my favorites to make.  My kids act like I've just spent 10 hours in the kitchen making up a special masterpiece.  In reality, that is no where near the case.  All they are is prepared blue jello & cool whip. Seriously, how much easier can you get?

They are also one of my favorite picnic treats.  The jello & cool whip packs up easily, and they are quickly put together when we reach our destination.  

Cloud Parfaits

  • prepared blue jello
  • cool whip


Layer the prepared blue jello & the cool whip in a clear glass.  Serve.


Shared with these great blog parties!

April 23, 2012

Menu Plan Monday - 4/23/12

This week is looking exceptionally busy around here, so I am turning to my crockpot for some of the meals this week, which save me tons of time and energy during the busiest days.

Here's what our menu is looking like for the week.


Breakfast Mac & Cheese
Bacon, Eggs, & Biscuits

Sausage Gravy & Biscuits
Stuffed Country Ham Biscuits

Pancakes & Sausage

Leftover Pancakes
Breakfast Burritos


Corn Chowder
Green Chile Stew, Avocado Onion Salad

Lightened Up Burgers & Grilled Mixed Vegetables

Slowcooker Pot Roast, Blackeyed Peas, Buttermilk Biscuits

Spaghetti & Bread Machine Garlic Bread
Teriyaki Chicken, Cheesy Ranch Potatoes, Green Beans, Cornbread

Slowcooker Parmesan Honey Pork Roast, Pan Seared Asparagus, Honey Roasted Carrots, Honey Oatmeal Bread


Check out many more menu plans over at OrgJunkie!

April 22, 2012

Makin' You Crave Monday

Welcome to another edition of Makin' You Crave Monday!

This week, I'm sharing my Mean Green Smoothies - packed with a healthy dose of spinach plus a variety of fruits.  Makes for an incrediblly tasty, healthy treat!

A big thanks to all those who linked up last week.  Here are my favorites.

Key Lime Pie Cupcakes from Cups by Kim

Cookies & Cream Cupcakes by Talented Terrance Girls

Cherry Cobbler by Pint Sized Baker

I can't wait to see what everyone has in store for this week!


Shared with these great blog parties!


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