Happy Halloween- Crocktoberfest!

My work had a really fun Crocktoberfest where we all brought in some delicious food to share, not only did I make Smitten Kitchen’s Italian Cabbage Rolls but I couldn’t resist making another childhood favorite DIRT PUDDING!  I just love the stuff, it’s chocolate mousse and Oreos… and much much more- and it was a HUGE hit, everyone was so happy.  You want to brighten someone’s day, make them dirt!  Dirt Pudding that is:

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Adapted From: Taste of Home

Ingredients

  • 1 package (8 ounces) 1/3 Less fat PHILADELPHIA® Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 3-1/2 cups cold 2% milk
  • 2 packages (3.4 ounces each) instant chocolate pudding mix
  • 1 carton (12 ounces) frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 1 package (15-1/2 ounces) Oreo cookies
  • Gummy Worms, optional

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and confectioners’ sugar until smooth. In a large bowl, whisk milk and pudding mixes for 2 minutes; let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set. Gradually stir into cream cheese mixture. Fold in whipped topping.
  2. Spread 1-1/3 cups of crushed cookies into an ungreased 13-in. x 9-in. or Trifle dish. Layer with half of the pudding mixture and half of the remaining cookies. Repeat layers. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving. Serve with gummy worms if desired! Yield: 20 servings.
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Beef Confetti Chili

Best Chili recipe so far, we used 93/7 lean ground beef and loads of fresh veggies, and this was the PERFECT hearty rich chili.  We love letting it meld together all day while we work, so when you get home there is no cooking, just eating and relaxing!

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16 oz  Beef, Ground, 93% Lean Meat / 7% Fat
small  onion, diced (1 cup)
medium red bell pepper, seeded and diced (1 cup)
1 poblano pepper, seeded and diced
habenero pepper, seeded and diced
teaspoon  ground cumin
teaspoon  ground coriander
teaspoon  Chili Powder
1/2 teaspoon  garlic powder
28 ounce  crushed tomatoes, with their juices
cups  Organic Low Sodium Chicken Broth
tbsp  chipotle chile
1/2 teaspoon  dried oregano
14 ounces  canned reduced sodium black beans, drained and rinsed
28 ounces  low sodium pinto beans canned, drained and rinsed
cup  corn kernels
Salt and Pepper to taste
Directions

Saute onions with a bit of olive oil, add beef and brown till cooked through
Add all ingredients to crock pot, stir, cover and cook low 8 hours
Serve with cilantro and sour cream and cheddar cheese!

Apple Cider Pancakes with Cinnamon Sugar Topping

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Pinterest is the devil, and is amazing all at the same time.  You see these gorgeous pictures of delicious food and I don’t know about you, but I go straight to the store and get what I need to make them.  I grew up eating buttered toast with cinnamon and sugar sprinkled on top, and lately I’ve been craving random childhood foods… This recipe has whole grains, healthy fat, and yogurt with that fall cider and apple, and is decadent at the same time.  I would definately cook down a cup of cider next time to concentrate the flavor and add chunks of diced apple as well, I wanted  more apple.  But the pnacakes were a great texture, thin light and cakey at the same time.

Apple Cider Pancakes + Cinnamon-Sugar Topping

adapted from: Tokyo Terrace Blog

*This recipe makes a large batch. If you are making these for 2 or 3 people, just save the extra dry mix as I’ve indicated below. This way you’ll have plenty for the next time you decide to make pancakes! If you’d prefer not to use whole wheat flour, use white flour instead.

3 cups whole wheat flour
3 cups white flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon salt

Place ingredients in an airtight container and store until ready to use. Or continue with the recipe below, which makes  nice amount of pancakes for 2 very hungry people or 4 not so hungry people:

1 cups dry pancake mix

1 egg, separated
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup buttermilk (or buttermilk substitute)
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1 teaspoons honey
1/2 cup apple cider (or apple juice if you can’t find cider)

Unsalted Butter (both for cooking the pancakes and topping them when they are finished)

3 Tablespoons sugar + 1 1/2 Tablespoons ground cinnamon

Place the 1 cup of dry mix in a large bowl. In a small bowl, whisk the egg white, buttermilk, yogurt, honey and cider. In another small bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and olive oil. Whisk the wet ingredients in one bowl until combined. Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry mix and stir until just combined. Lumps are good! Don’t get rid of them!

Heat 1 tablespoon of butter or vegetable oil in a medium pan. Measure 1/3 cup of the batter and pour into the pan. When you start to see small bubbles on the top of the pancakes and the edges are beginning to cook, flip the pancake. Be sure to add more butter or oil as needed so the pancakes don’t stick.

While the pancakes are still warm, top with some butter and allow it to melt over the top of the pancakes. Sprinkle with the cinnamon and sugar mixture and eat!