Thursday, July 31, 2014

Grilled Tropical Pound Cake and Pineapple



Since becoming pregnant my taste and tolerance for food has really changed.  Let's be honest, my motivation to make things has changed quite a bit as well.  You may have noticed this by my (lack of) blogging lately.  But, rest assured, at 35+ weeks pregnant there is a light at the end of this preggo tunnel and not only am I super excited to meet this little bun I have been cooking but I am also excited to get into the kitchen and make some delicious things to share.  

For the time being I am on the lookout for easy, delicious things to make that require the least amount of thinking.  I have to say that I have fallen even more in love with Tastefully Simple while pregnant.  The ease of their recipes coupled with knowing that everything I have made from their product line has turned out great is really fantastic.  Let's be honest, there is nothing worse than putting any amount of time and energy into something and it doesn't turn out.  

A few weekends ago we had our annual couple's trip to the lake.  It was so fantastic to catch up, laugh and relax with three of our favorite couples.  Standing in the lake with the sun on my skin and weight off my joints was just about the most amazing thing ever.  After spending an entire day on/in the lake we came back for an awesome dinner.  I offered to bring dessert and it did not disappoint.  I had help from the ladies of the group who I have to say were great blogging assistants…racing the daylight, holding things at the grill and helping with "accessorizing" the last shot.  Here is how it went down 
 This recipe starts off with following the directions on the box of Tropical Pound Cake Mix.
 Pour the mix into a bowl
 Add in melted butter
 Water
 And stir.  Yep, that easy.
Pour the batter into a loaf pan
 Spread out on the top and pop this baby in the oven.  Just wait until you start smelling it bake!
 Next, I got to work on the pineapple
 Cut off the top
 And used this amazing pineapple tool to cut it into rings
 I'm seriously obsessed with this thing.  I detached the rings and placed them in a container to bring to the lake
 By that time the pound cake was done.  I let it cool completely and wrapped it in tin foil for travel.
 When we were ready to make dessert I cut the Tropical Pound Cake into nice thick slices
 Out to the grill we went
 First we added the pineapple rings to the top rack.  The grill was preheated on medium high heat.
 I lightly spritzed the pound cake with canola oil spray…coconut oil spray would work as well.
 On to the grill with the poundcake
 We monitored things very closely and after a few minutes, the pound cake was ready to be flipped.
 Same with the pineapple.
 To assemble, we placed the Tropical Pound Cake on the plate, topped with the grilled pineapple and a dollop of whipped cream.
 Paper umbrella optional but highly recommended.

I have to say this Grilled Tropical Pound Cake with Pineapple was a huge hit!  The pound cake stayed nice and moist and was perfectly complimented with the tart yet sweet pineapple and whipped cream.  Not only did this dessert wow our tastebuds, it was pretty stinking cute.

Grilled Tropical Pound Cake and Pineapple 
(serves 10)

1 box Tropical Pound Cake
3/4 cup melted butter
1 cup water
1 fresh pineapple
Canola or coconut oil spray
whipped cream for serving

Start by preparing the Tropical Pound Cake by following the directions on the box.  Once baked, let cool completely and either serve or wrap in tin foil until ready to make dessert.

Cut the pineapple into rings.  Set aside until ready to grill.

When ready to make dessert, preheat the grill to medium high heat.  Place the pineapple rings on the top wrack of the grill.  Then lightly spray each side of the pound cake with the cooking spray.  Place on the main wrack of the grill and watch closely.  We didn't even shut the grill this happened so quickly.  Once the first side of the pound cake has grill marks, flip it to the second side.  Flip the pineapple to warm and make grill marks on the other side.  Once everything is all warm and grilled-marked up, remove from the grill to assemble.

Place the pound cake on a plate, top with a ring of pineapple and dollop of whipped cream.  Paper umbrellas really add something special as well :)

Enjoy!

Recipe by: Mrs. Schwartz

***DISCLAIMER: I was provided with product and compensation for this post from Tastefully Simple.  All opinions are my own and as aways, you can't buy my love, baby.**





Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Pina Colada Granita and a Giveaway!



With the temps and humidity finally climbing in Minnesota, I have found my pregnant self craving frosty, cold treats.  Let's be honest, my body still associates feeling nauseous all the time (yes, I am 31 weeks pregnant today and still face "morning sickness" all day) with being hung-over so I'm not craving a beer, but cold treats, yes!  

I was sent this Pina Colada Slush Drink Mix from Tastefully Simple and knew that it would be the ticket.  I made a simple Pina Colada Granita with it and it really hit the spot.  Here is how I did it...

The drink mix comes in it's own little bucket so all you have to do is rinse it out
Pour in the mix
Add water
And stir until it is completely dissolved
I popped it into the freezer over night
And the next day had a brick of Pina Colada
Which I then scraped the heck out of with a fork
Spooned it into an adorable little glass and went to town
It had the perfect consistency of a shaved ice and the taste of the tropics.  I am so happy I have a bucket of this ready to scrape and enjoy at will!

There are a few other recipes on the bucket and at TastefullySimple.com using the drink mix that, yes, include alcohol for all of you folks who like to booze it up!

But, how about a little giveaway to really kick off this summer season!?  Tastefully Simple has generously offered their Triple the Fun drink bucket mixes for a little giveaway!  How fun is this!?  One winner will receive this prize pack of Lovin' Lemon Slush Drink Mix, Juicy Watermelon Margarita Mix and Mango Breeze Margarita Mix!  These are perfect for the hot summer evenings after work or for entertaining!  Just enter below and I will pick a winner the evening of Monday, July 7th.  Please note that you will need to respond to my email saying you won within 24 hours or I will pick a new winner!

Good luck and HAPPY SUMMER!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**Disclaimer: I was provided with product and compensation for this post as a blogger in Project Simplicity.  All opinions are 100% authentic and are my own.  As always, you can't buy my love, baby.**

Friday, May 23, 2014

Caramel Macchiato No-Bake Cheesecakes

If you follow me on Instagram, you saw that not too long ago, coffee and I became friends again.  After quite a long hiatus, (18 weeks to be exact), my pregnant body decided it needed to try again.  So I made myself a nice tall iced decaf coffee and haven't looked back since.  Ahhh to be "normal" again!  

Since then I have had a coffee every day (decaf--quit judging me) and when I spoke with Tastefully Simple about today's post, I knew I had to try the Caramel Macchiato Frappe Drink Mix! Oh my word you guys, this stuff is heavenly.  The original use is to take the mix, combine it with ice and water in a blender and you have the most heavenly frozen coffee drink you will ever sip on.  I drink a lot of these, take my word for it!  

But, for today, I used the mix to make these adorable Caramel Macchiato No-Bake Cheesecakes.  They could not be easier (note: pregnant and tired) to make and they received rave reviews by my husband, sister and niece!  Here's how to make them

Start out with crushing a few Oreos.  I think the single-stuff Oreos would work better but let's be honest, you will only use about 8 and then have a package of single-stuff Oreos in your pantry?  Worthless.  Get the double-stuff.
I roughly crushed them like so, with my fingers in a plastic bag.  Set aside
Next you will need whipped cream cheese.  You could use regular cream cheese but this was so much easier to incorporate.  Use whatever you have on hand.
Plop it in the bowl
Next you will want to tear open this bag of heaven.  
Sprinkle in 5 tablespoons of the mix
And combine with the whipped cream cheese using a hand mixer.  You don't have to use a hand mixer it just yields a better consistency.
Next, you will need a tub o' whipped topping
Add that to the bowl as well, mix with the hand mixer.  Don't over mix this, you don't want to loose the fluff.
Then it is time to assemble.  Take a few of the Oreo cookie pieces and place them in the bottom of your jar
Layer in the caramel macchiato mixture (drooling…)
Next comes this amazing Creamy Caramel Sauce.  Seriously, I am not a huge caramel fan (I know right?) but this stuff is so good.  So good.  I actually tastes home made and doesn't have that weird from a jar caramel taste.  Love!
Pop the Creamy Caramel Sauce in the microwave (WITHOUT THE LID) for about 20 seconds so it is easier to drizzle.
Drizzle it over the caramel macchiato mixture
Top with a  little more whipped topping and a few more crushed Oreos.
And there you have it!  Fancy looking with minimal effort= happy pregnant lady.
Oh and it is also coffee flavored?  
Win! Win! Win!


Caramel Macchiato No-Bake Cheesecakes

8 Oreos (double or single-stuffed)
8 oz cream cheese (whipped cream cheese is easier to use)
5 tablespoons Caramel Macchiato Frappe Mix 
8 oz whipped topping (lite is okay!)
3 tablespoons Creamy Caramel Sauce

Start by crushing the Oreos in a plastic bag.  You don't want them pulverized, just crushed.  Set aside.

Add the cream cheese and Caramel Macchiato Frappe Mix into a large bowl, combine using a hand mixer for best results or by hand if you don't have one.  Add in all but about 1/4 cup of the whipped topping and mix again with the hand mixer.  Don't over do it, you don't want to loose the fluffy quality of the mixture.

Pop the Creamy Caramel Sauce into the microwave (without the lid on it) for about 20-30 seconds so it is drizzle-able.

To assemble, take about a tablespoon of the crushed Oreos and place them in the bottom of your jar.  Spoon in about two tablespoons of the caramel macchiato mixture on top of the Oreos.  Drizzle a few teaspoons of the Creamy Caramel Sauce over the top.  Spoon on a tablespoon of the reserved whipped topping and sprinkle with a few more crushed Oreos.

These can be served right away or chilled for later.

Enjoy!

Recipe by: Mrs. Schwartz

**DISCLAIMER:  As part of Project Simplicity, I was provided with product for this post as well as compensated for my time.  I however truly love these products and all opinions are my own.  As always, you cannot buy my love, baby.**