Rainbow Jell-O



Layered Rainbow Jello

My youngest grandson, Fischer, loves Jell-O. When he stays over on a school night, his first request for a ‘cold’ lunch includes red Jell-O cups. I took it a step farther and made rainbow Jell-O.

What was suppose to be a joint project with Fischer turned into an all day project for NeeNee while he went to the movies. I should have known he wouldn’t have the patience for this particular project. Four hours later, the colorful layers were ready to set-up for an additional two hours. Yep, you read that correctly. It took six hours to prepare this Jell-O dish.

IMG_7872So, unless you are attending a special event, forget making this particular Jell-O dish. My grand kids had little appreciation for the time it took to make dish. They saw a photo on Google and said, “NeeNee can make that!”

Leave it to stupid-o NeeNee to make good on that claim.


INGREDIENTS

  • 4 (3-ounce) packages assorted flavored gelation
  • 6 envelopes unflavored gelatin
  • Boiling water
  • 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/4 cup cold water

HOW TO

  1. Combine on package flavored gelatin and one envelop unflavored gelatin in a small bowl. Add 1 cup boiling water and stir until dissolved. Cool 5 minutes. Pour mixture into a deep baking dish of your choice. (I used a Bundt pan). You will want to spray a light coating of cooking spray inside the dish.
  2. Refrigerate 20 minutes.
  3. Combine condensed milk (scrape the inside of the can clean) and 1 cup boiling water in a bowl. Mix well using a wire whisk. Set aside.
  4. In another bowl and add 1/4 cup cold water. Sprinkle two envelopes of the unflavored gelation over the cold water. Let stand for a minute and then stir in 3/4 up boing water.
  5. Add the unflavored gelation mixture to the sweetened condensed milk mixture. Mix well.
  6. Remove the first gelatin layer from the fridge and spoon a layer of the creamy condensed milk mixture over the top. Return to fridge and let set for 25 minutes.
  7. Continue alternating layers of the flavored gelatin and creamy milk mixture. To keep each layer ‘pure’, make sure that you allow the dissolved gelatin to cool down before spooning over the previous layer.
  8. Chill each layer before spooning next layer. Top off the final layer with a flavored gelatin.
  9. Refrigerate for 2 hours before cutting and serving.

This Jell-O recipe will keep in the refrigerator for up to 10 days. Freezing unused portions is not recommended.

 

 

Apple Raspberry Crisp

Apple Raspberry Crisp

This is an adaptation of my Apple Crisp recipe only with fresh raspberries and oatmeal (for fiber). It doesn’t have to be served hot and on a 90 degree day (like today), it’s a perfect fit with a couple scoops of ice cream.

Apple Raspberry Crisp

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh raspberries
  • 4 large apples, peeled and sliced
  • 8 teaspoons Splenda sugar
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup quick cook oats
  • 1/4 cup “I can’t Believe It’s Not Butter”, softened
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar

Apple Raspberry Crisp

How To

Mix apples, raspberries, Splenda sugar, flour and 2 teaspoons cinnamon in a bowl. Transfer to a 9 x 9 inch baking dish.

Apple Raspberry CrispUse the same bowl and combine oats, brown sugar, margarine and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Evenly distribute over the fruit in the baking pan. Bake for 50-55 minutes at 350 degrees.

Let’s talk calories. This dish will serve six to eight people. A one cup serving is in the neighborhood of 153 calories.

Sweet Holiday TREEt

Holiday Sweet Tree-t

I clipped this recipe from a magazine last month thinking it would be a fun treat to make with the grandkids. I’m glad I decided to do it myself. My suggestion is to have all the shapes cut beforehand and let the kids do the assembling. No doubt the sticky, gooey sweetness will score big for the little ones.

What this recipe lacks in ingredients, it more than makes up for in calories. Let’s see, an entire box of Fruity Pebbles cereal, 1/2 stick of butter, one bag of mini marshmallows and frosting. Need I say more? Bite-size portions are in the neighborhood of 105 calories (most being sugar grams). I am guessing the recipe can serve up to 36.

Mix together melted marshamallows and cereal

 INGREDIENT LIST

  • 1 box Fruity Pebbles cereal
  • 1/2 stick butter (you use margarine)
  • 1 package mini-marshmallows ( 10 1/2 ounces)
  • 16 ounce ready-to-spread cream cheese frosting (or vanilla) 
  • Stacking cookie cutters (I used both round and daisy shapes because it’s what I had). The recipe called for star shapes. Improvise if you must.

 HOW TO

Melt the butter in a deep fry pan over low heat. Add the marshmallows and continue to melt and stir on low heat.

When marshmallows are completely melted, gradually add cereal. Mix well ensuring cereal has an even coat of marshmallow mixture.

Spread mixture in a 13"  x 9" baking dish

Lightly coat a 13″ x 9″ pan with non-stick cooking spray. Evenly and firmly spread the gooey mixture into pan . I found a sheet of wax paper helps.

Let the mixture set up for 45 minutes to an hour before cutting with shaped cutouts.

 

The tree is stacked with 5 different size cut-outs. You need two of each size. I used a large circle for the base of tree, and rotated each shape based on diameter size (largest to smallest).

Each cut-out is attached to the next by frosting.  Fill in any bare spots with additional frosting and decorate with holiday candies. I used a peppermint candy as the tree topper.

 

You will need to bear down on the cookie cutter to cut through the gooey mixture. This is why I suggest making the cut-outs ahead of time when working with small children.

 

Cut shapes with cookie cutters

The cookie cutters should have some depth and be stable enough to cut without bending.

 

Cut out the stackable shapes from the cereal mixture

Attach the pieces with ready-to-serve frosting

Once the tree is constructed, keep it covered. I placed the tree on a holiday plate and covered with tented aluminum foil. Store in the fridge for up to 7 days.

Now, here is the big question. How in the world do you cut this tree for serving? My answer, “I have no idea”. My thoughts are you start disassembling at the top of tree and work your way down, cutting into serving sizes.

Peach & Coconut Milk Ice Cream Treats


Filo cups filled with coconut milk, roasted peaches and raspberries.Coconut Peach PopsicleMichigan is setting record breaking temperatures this summer. Heck, we haven’t had rain in three weeks. Grass is fading to brown, temps are soaring and everyone is looking for ways to cool-off.

My cool-off idea was to pull out the grill and roast fresh peaches! Yep, roasted peach slices. Pair it with coconut milk and shredded cocount for a savory summer popsicle.

My soap making company sells the popsicle and pop sticks. But, in 95 degree weather, I discovered a better way to use the mold. Bite size filo cups filled with ice cream goodness.

The pops were very tasty with just enough sweetness to satisfy. I hope the grand kids give this summer treat a thumbs-up.

If you don’t want to invest in a pop mold, freeze mixture in a plastic tub. When ready to serve, place scoops into parfait dishes and drizzle with  honey (and coconut).

This picture is an indicator of the high temps we are experiencing. I took a bite from the popsicle and it was already melting. That’s OK, it only took me one minute to eat it!

Slice fresh peaches and roast in oven or grill.Here’s the scoop on how to make these yummy summer treats.

Ingredients

  • 4 fresh peaches cored and sliced, do not peel the skins
  • 2 cans of coconut milk (get the Light, if available)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut

How To

Roast peach slices in oven.Leave skins on peaches, slice into wedges. Spread out onto cookie sheet and sprinkle with lemon juice. Roast in oven at 400-425 degrees. Bake until the peach slices start to caramelize (about 25-30 minutes). Remove and dice into smaller pieces. Set aside.

Rich coconut milk with vanilla extract.

Blend coconut milk, shredded coconut and vanilla extract until creamy.

Pour mold cavities 1/3 full of the coconut milk. Drop 2-3 diced peaches into each mold. Place in freezer and let set for 30 minutes. 

Remove mold from freezer. Drop in more peach pieces (try to evenly distribute), add another layer of coconut milk and freeze for 30 minutes.

Pour the coconut mixture into each mold cavitiy.

Remove mold from freezer. It’s time to pour the final layer. Top off mold cavities with the coconut milk, evenly distribute additional peach slices. Insert the pop sticks. Place in freezer for a minimum of 3 hours. The pops should be frozen solid once removed.

The popsicles may require a quick soak in warm water for removal. Note the word “quick”. If you soak too long, the pops will begin to melt.

Filling the popsicle mold

Tips

  • Make single serving bite-size desserts. Place any leftover popsicle mixture in a plastic tub and freeze. Using a melon baller, scoop out ice cream mixture and place into a mini filo cup. Dress with a raspberry and whipped cream. Serve immediately.
  • Use small binder clips to keep sticks centered in each mold cavity.
  • You don’t have to use a popsicle mold. Consider freezing the coconut mixture and scooping out servings into a parfait dish. Top with shredded coconut.

The popsicle molds filled to the top.

Serve petite single-serve portions with a chilled glass of Pinot Grigio wine. You can dip the filo cups into melted chocolate… YUMMM!

Use mini filo cups to serve up this delicious ice cream.

 This recipe makes 12 (6 ounce) popsicles, PLUS there is plenty leftover to make 24-36 bite size filo cups.

OK, let’s talk calories. You’re in the neighborhood of 28 calories per ounce for the coconut milk. One whole peach (roasted) and a tablespoon of grated coconut (unsweetened)  adds  203 calories.

A 6-ounce popsicle is 150 calories. The only down-side of using coconut are fat calories. They’re fairly high. But, an occasional indulgence shouldn’t affect your weight loss goal.

The bite-size filo cups might be a better option (as pictured above). They appease the sweet-tooth, and are less than 30 calories (per filled cup) if using fat-free whipped cream.

 

Fresh Grilled Figs with Goat Cheese & Basil

Grilled Figs and Goat Cheese with Basil

Every year, the wine guy and I mark our calendars for fig season. Today we rejoiced! Fresh mission figs were available at Costco. If you’ve never experienced grilled figs with dollops of goat cheese and basil… you haven’t experienced life. It’s a culinary delight.

Fresh grilled figs are a culinary delight.

The tray of figs were cut in half. Leave the seeds intact. I soaked wooden skewers in water for 20 minutes. This keeps the skewers from burning on the grill. You only need to grill for a few minutes under low heat.

Promptly remove the figs from the skewers and top each fig with a dollop of goat cheese. Fresh basil leaves add to the flavor. You may want to chop the basil first and then sprinkle on top of the goat cheese filling. This appetizer is best served warm, but the wine guy and I were headed out for a day on the lake. We put our coveted figs in a cooler and quite honestly they were tasty even when chilled.

 Grilled figs ready to fill with goat cheese.

We are picking up another tray of figs at Costco this week. There are 24 mission figs in a tray. Cutting the figs lengthwise yields 48 bite-size servings and is in the neighborhood of 45 calories per fig (including goat cheese and basil topping).

According to the California Fig Advisory Board, figs contain more fiber than other common fruits and vegetables. One medium fig contains 1.7 g of fiber. If you eat 4 ½ medium figs, you satisfy 30 percent of the daily recommended allowance for fiber. Fiber is essential to regular digestion, a healthy colon and beneficial in lowering lower cholesterol. Oh, and let’s not fail to mention that figs are a great source of calcium and potassium.
 
Pencil in a date night with a figs while they are in season.  

NeeNee’s Apple Crisp

Blimpy Girl's Apple CrispThere are two stories behind this apple crisp dish.

Story #1
My grandsons stayed overnight on Thursday. Carson got into a little trouble and was grounded from TV and Wii. Blimpy Girl NeeNee decided we could we could work together in the kitchen. We made an apple crisp (a favorite for Carson). We enjoyed our project and the boys learned something new.

Grating the apples for the apple crisp.Story #2
I discovered an apple crisp recipe dating back to the early 1970’s. I’m fairly certain the recipe book was a wedding gift from my first marriage (my daughter’s Dad). My grand son loved that I used this recipe while married to his Poppa.

So, with stories shared, here is the recipe (not exactly Blimpy Girl style, but heck… call it a splurge).

Recipe Page

Spread in pan:

4 cups sliced apples (we used a grater since the boys are too young to handle a kitchen knife)

Sprinkle apples with 1/4 cup water, 1 teaspoons cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

In a separate bowl add1 cup sugar (I used Splenda), 3/4 cups flour and 1/3 cup butter (whipped-low fat kind). Mix with a pastry blender until crumbly. Spread mixture over the apples.

Bake in a 350 degree oven for 35-40 minutes. Serve while warm. Makes 6 servings. Calories… you don’t need to know, it’s a splurge item *wink*.

The apple crisp receives a thumbs-up.

The apple crisp receives a thumbs-up.

Gummy Fruit Ice Cream Dessert

Valentine Jello Treat with Ice Cream

Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. The grand kids are here for an overnight while Mommy and Daddy enjoy an extended snowmobile weekend in Michigan’s UP. This gummy fruit ice cream dessert is on the menu for the grand kids tomorrow. Heck, I might even serve it over pancakes.

NO, NO, NO… the beet colored cut outs on the ice cream ARE NOT BEETS. The stacked cut-outs are actually a gel mixture made with blackberries, strawberries and blueberries.Mix the berries with water Emulsify the mixture and pour into an 8 x 8 pan and refrigerate overnight.

Remove from fridge and cut out desired shapes with cookie cutters.

Use a 3-inch round cookie cutter to make the vanilla ice cream patty. Place cut out gummy shapes on top and decorate with a splash of strawberry syrup. Place in freezer until ready to serve.  I’ll get the recipe posted in the next day or two.

   

 

Zucchini Carrot Apple Bread

Zucchini Carrot Apple Bundt Bread

To call this a bread doesn’t seem right, it’s more like a moist cake. You can either bake it in a bundt pan or in two loaf pans. Using loaf pans allows you to keep one and gift or freeze the other loaf. The fact that my three year old grand son loved it, is a clear indicator that this bread/cake is a winner in Blimpy Girl’s recipe book.

My honey-man, the Wine Guy, baked this yesterday for dessert. A light confectioner sugar  and cream cheese frosting was the drizzled topping. I love the color and texture of the slices. Knowing there are two veggies and a fruit incorporated into the recipe is an added bonus.

The bread easily serves 12. Pair it with a strong cup of java…yum…yum! Grab the Recipe
 Bundt Bread: Zucchini Apple Carrot

Brownie & Cream Cheese Cupcakes (with Strawberries)

Brownie & Cream Cupcakes

Who says you can’t have cake and eat it too? These brownie cupcakes were served at our New Year Eve dinner party this year for dessert. My good friend, Janelle, made them. She has lost a considerable amount of weight over the last year and, like me, is conscious of her calorie intake. It was so thoughtful of her to bring a guilt-free dessert.

It’s a very simple recipe. One box of No Pudge Fudge brownie mix. You will find it in the baking section of your grocery store. Prepare the mix as directed and bake the brownies in cupcake liners. I strongly urge you to use silicone cupcake liners. The paper liners tend to stick to the brownie mix when using the No Pudge Fudge mix. Probably because of the low fat.

While the brownies are cooling prepare the topping.

  • Low fat cream cheese
  • Fat free/no sugar cheesecake flavor instant jello pudding
  • 2 tablespoons low fat milk
  • 1 tablespoon Splenda or agave nectar
  • Sliced strawberries

How easy is that? Not sure on the exact calories, but I do know that the brownie itself is only 120 calories. My guess is the topping adds another 20  to 30 calories, if that. It’s a low-cal splurge. The cupcake brownie is dense and quite filling (and yummy, too!!).

 Janelle, also brought along some cream filled strawberries. The same low fat cream filling was used in the strawberries. Here’s a great tutorial on how to prep the strawberries from Stephanie at Anna and Blue Paperie.

Strawberries filled with Low Fat Cream Cheese

Magic Christmas Elf Smoothie

Magic Christmas Elf Smoothie

Thank you Betty C. for this awesome strawberry vanilla yogurt smoothie idea. I’ve revised it a bit to fit the Magic Elves that arrive every Christmas.

The wine guy (my honey-man) is off to the grocery store to shop for the week. These ingredients are on the list. Won’t the grand kids be surprised when they awaken and find their Magic Elves sipping on this smoothie?

I so love the candy cane edge around the glass….so festive. Let the Elf fun begin. If you haven’t followed my Elfcapade adventures each holiday season, I encourage you to visit my soap making blog to see what’s been up with the mischievous elves. Grab the Recipe

Countdown to Magic Elf Arrival 2011
Those Darn Elves. Always into Something!
What’s Up This Year With the Elves?
It’s Magic Christmas Elf Time Again
Elfcapades Day Seven (Magic Christmas Elves)
Elfcapades Day Four (Magic Christmas Elves)
Elfcapades Day Two (Magic Chrismas Elves)
The Eve of The Magic Christmas Elf Arrival
Magic Christmas Elves Arrive by Sleigh