My favorite.cookie.ever. The actual cookie looked a tad time consuming and need of an insane amount of patience. Bars, I can handle 🙂  Can’t wait to try them! Don’t forget to join in by grabbing the button!!

Homemade Samoas Bars
Cookie Base:
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt

First, make the crust.
Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a 9×13-inch baking pan, or line with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, cream together sugar and butter, until fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla extract. Working at a low speed, gradually beat in flour and salt until mixture is crumbly, like wet sand. The dough does not need to come together. Pour crumbly dough into prepapred pan and press into an even layer.
Bake for 20-25 minutes, until base is set and edges are lightly browned. Cool completely on a wire rack before topping.

Topping
3 cups shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
12-oz good-quality chewy caramels
1/4 tsp salt
3 tbsp milk
10 oz. dark or semisweet chocolate (chocolate chips are ok)

Preheat oven to 300. Spread coconut evenly on a parchment-lined baking sheet (preferably one with sides) and toast 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, until coconut is golden. Cool on baking sheet, stirring occasionally. Set aside.

Unwrap the caramels and place in a large microwave-safe bowl with milk and salt. Cook on high for 3-4 minutes, stopping to stir a few times to help the caramel melt. When smooth, fold in toasted coconut with a spatula.
Put dollops of the topping all over the shortbread base. Using the spatula, spread topping into an even layer. Let topping set until cooled.
When cooled, cut into 30 bars with a large knife or a pizza cutter (it’s easy to get it through the topping).
Once bars are cut, melt chocolate in a small bowl. Heat on high in the microwave in 45 second intervals, stirring thoroughly to prevent scorching. Dip the base of each bar into the chocolate and place on a clean piece of parchment or wax paper. Transfer all remaining chocolate (or melt a bit of additional chocolate, if necessary) into a piping bag or a ziploc bag with the corner snipped off and drizzle bars with chocolate to finish.
Let chocolate set completely before storing in an airtight container.

Makes 30 bar cookies.

Note: You can simply drizzle chocolate on top of the bars before slicing them up if you’re looking for yet an easier way to finish these off. You won’t need quite as much chocolate as noted above, and you won’t quite get the Samoas look, but the results will still be tasty.

Thanks to Baking Bites!

Sorry for the delay in this returning! Before we get to the treat, some housekeeping things. I mentioned that I would try to get a Mr. Linky up. Unfortunately, that’s before I knew you had to PAY for Mr. Linky! Sad times. So, for now, until I see how bug this gets (ie: does it warrent subscribing for Mr. Linky??) Just post here if you’re participating in Treats To Try (either by making the treat I’m trying OR posting your own T3 (Treats To Try) on your blog! I’d love it if you’d grab the button Cara made for this event and post it on your blog as well! (more people that see it, the more people that participate, I might just pay for Mr. Linky!) 😉

If you try the treat I mention, be sure to report back with your thoughts on it!

If you’re posting your own, who knows, I may pick your treat to try next! 🙂

Without further ado…. Homemade Pizza Dough (Whole Wheat and Honey Pizza Dough) thanks to 24 Hour Menu!

1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast (or 2 1/4 tsp)
1 cup warm water
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/4 cup wheat germ
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon honey

DIRECTIONS

In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.

In a large bowl combine flour, wheat germ and salt. Make a well in the middle and add honey and yeast mixture. Stir well to combine. Cover and place in the refrigerator for 12-24 hours. The dough will rise while the yeast is still warm.

After the dough has rested for while, roll dough on a floured pizza pan and poke a few holes in it with a fork.

Bake in 425 degree preheated oven for 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from oven and add toppings. Bake for another 10 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown!

Treats To Try

March.28.2009

This week’s treat comes from Little Birdie Secrets, a super fun blog jam packed with creative (and often YUMMY!) ideas!

Today was just one of those yummy ideas. I knew I could swing this recipe, this weekend even, because we have all these ingredients on hand. I can’t wait 🙂 I’ve been looking for a good granola recipe and haven’t found one I like yet – this sounds yummy yummy!

Home- Made Granola

7 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup wheat germ
1 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup oil
1 cup honey
1/4 cup water
2 T. vanilla
1/2 T. salt
1/8 cup cinnamon

Mix all of the ingredients together and spread out on a greased cookie sheet. Bake at 325 degrees for 20 minutes. Stir and bake another 15 minutes. Scrape the bottom of cookie sheet as soon as it is done to prevent sticking. Cool and then store in an airtight container.

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Check back to see the verdict!

Treats To Try

March.21.2009

Ok, once again, I’m going to change things up a bit…

The list last week was very overwhelming in trying to decide something new to try, soooooo…

My new Treats To Try will be one new recipe I intend to try the following week (as in, the one I post today will be tried for dinner one day this week). It will not always be a dinner, this one just happens to be. But this will be less overwhelming for me! 🙂 Please, feel free to join in in trying a new treat each week (doesn’t have to be this one, just a NEW one!)

My plan is to report back after trying the recipe and give a review on it…this could occur at anytime during the week, depending on when the recipe is tried!

With that being said! This weeks’ treat will be:

Kraft Food’s Cheeseburger Roll-Ups. I found this recipe via Feasting Fun this week and I am way too excited about it!

1 lb. lean ground beef
4 slices  OSCAR MAYER Bacon, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 lb.  (8 oz.) VELVEETA Pasteurized Prepared Cheese Product, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 pkg. (13.8 oz.) refrigerated pizza crust

HEAT oven to 400°F. Brown ground beef with bacon and onions in large skillet on medium-high heat; drain. Return meat mixture to skillet. Add VELVEETA; cook until melted, stirring frequently. Cool 10 min.

UNROLL dough onto baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Press into 15×8-inch rectangle; top with meat mixture. Roll up, starting at one of the long sides. Rearrange if necessary so roll is seam-side down.

BAKE 20 to 25 min. or until golden brown.Kraft Kitchen Tips (they are SO good about these!)

Serving Suggestion
Balance this indulgent “cheeseburger” with a mixed green salad and fresh fruit.
Special Extra
Serve with your favorite condiments, such as CLAUSSEN Dill Burger Slices, mustard, ketchup, sliced tomatoes and/or TACO BELL® HOME ORIGINALS® Thick ‘N Chunky Salsa.
Variation
Prepare using VELVEETA 2% Milk Pasteurized Prepared Cheese Product and substituting 1 can (7 oz.) chopped mushrooms, drained, for the bacon.

Treats To Try!

March.14.2009

Do you love girl scout cookies? Here is a Thin Mints recipe (and links to others, that I have not checked out yet)–Thanks, Little Birdie Secrets!

I keep saying that I’m going to make more of our bread and I never do…these burger buns and english muffins look amazing!!!!–Thanks, Frugal Village!

Making our own tortillas is also on the ‘to-do list’….–Thanks, Feasting Fun!

Yum! (Granola!)–Thanks, Cooking for Seven!

I hope to make this for our Freezer Meal Swap Group someday…or just us!! We LOVE burgers!–Thanks, Meal Planning Mommies!

Along the lines of bread, here’s a recipe for homemade whole wheat bread (we’re white bread addicts!)–Thanks, The Homemade Baby Food Recipe Blog

My dear friend, Angela, shared her story of baking for her hubby along with her Mamaw’s Chocolate Pie, does it not look INCREDIBLE!!!!–Thanks, Angela!

We make pizza all the time and next time, I’m going to experiment with making our own crust! Also, do you LOVE the Blondies from Applebee’s? I do!!–Thanks, 24 Hour Menu!

Hawaiian chicken sounds AH-mazing!–Thanks, My Favorite Recipes!

….We’ll stop there for this week!! Let me know if you try any of these treats!!

**also, I’d like to make a button for this weekly “gathering”…can anyone help me with that??