Chocolate Cream Pie




 I love cream pies, especially a good chocolate cream pie. It satisfies the sweet tooth, without being to heavy or filling, This chocolate cream pie is easy to make and we never have any leftovers because it is so amazing. To make the large chocolate shavings, I use this technique

Print recipe here 

Ingredients

crust:
30 nabisco wafers (I buy these at wincos)
1/3 cup of sugar
6 TB butter - softened

filling :
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 5 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

topping:
  • 1 cup chilled heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • shaved chocolate

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Make the filling: place the sugar, cornstarch and salt in a heavy medium saucepan, on medium/low heat. In a  measuring cup, whisk together the milk and egg yolks. Add the milk mixture to the saucepan in a slow and steady stream, whisking until the mixture is smooth. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture starts to bubble and thicken, 6-8 minutes. Immediately turn the heat down to a simmer and cook, whisking constantly until thick. (to prevent eggs from scrambling)    
  3. Turn off the heat, add the chocolate and whisk. Add the butter and vanilla extract. Transfer the filling to a bowl. Press a piece of saran wrap directly over surface of the filling to prevent a film from forming; refrigerate until cool, 1-2 hours.
  4. Make the crust: Combine the chocolate wafers, sugar and butter in a food processor and pulse until the cookies are finely crushed. Press the mixture firmly into a pie pan. Bake for 10 minutes until crisp. Cool completely.
  5. Once the filling and crust are cooled, spoon the filling into the crust and spread evenly and chill for at least 6 hours or up to one day.
  6. Up to 3 hours before serving, make the topping: Place the heavy cream and sugar in a stand mixer. Whip on medium speed until the whisk leaves  tracks in the cream. Add the whipped cream over the filling and sprinkle with the grated chocolate and refrigerate until ready to serve.


Thanks for visiting, 


Packing School Lunches -Planet Box Rover Review


Lets talk about packing lunches. My daughter takes a cold lunch to school about 3 times a week, depending on what is on the lunch menu.

  I prefer to pack my daughters lunch the night before- to avoid the morning rush. All I need to do in the morning, is move there container from the fridge to her carry bag. I also fill up her water bottle and put everything into her back pack.

 I used to have to pack little individual boxes and ziplock bags of fruit, veggies, snacks, and the main meal. Then I would need to wash all the individual boxes when my daughter would come home from school-- not fun. So when PlanetBox reached out to me and offered to send me their Rover lunchbox, to review, I jumped at the opportunity. I have seen pictures of this lunch box on instagram,  and I was even planning to purchase 2 for the next school year, so I could pack the same meals for both kids, side by side. 

After using this box for a few weeks, I feel like I can give you an honest review. 
I think this is a fantastic lunch box! It has perfect portions for a child or an adult. I no longer have to wash 2 or 3 tupperware containers after school. I just wash the entire lunch box or put it into the dishwasher. 

My daughter is picky- like most kids, so if she saw something in a baggie or a little container that she didn't like, she wouldn't even bother opening it. Now, as she lifts up her lunch box lid, all the food is in front of her and she doesn't need to ask for help from the teacher with any containers or baggies.  

I have only one tiny complaint about this box, and that is you can not heat food in the the stainless steel container, I wish they offered a container that was microwave safe. My daughter's class eats in their classroom, and they have a microwave to heat up food.  So when I pack something that I know she will like to warm up, I slip a small paper plate into the carry bag. She is able to place foods like quesadillas or pizza on the paper plate and heat them up. 

As I did some more research on this, I found out that Planet box makes a bigger lunch box (the Launch) with a glass container inside, which can be used in the microwave. I decided that I will be getting my daughter the Launch box next year and keep this rover box for my son. He will be in kindergarten next year and this would be perfect for him. I will just buy a new carry bag :)

The planet boxes come with magnets which you can customize your lunch box with,  and you can choose the color of your carry bag. 


This lunch box is made of high quality steel, the main box is not waterproof, which is why it comes with 1 little dipper and 1 big dipper for sauces, applesauce, yogurt and so on.

 I like the separate compartments, It helps me make sure I pack a balanced meal.


Heres a peek into her past few lunches-




Chocolate Cake



Nothing will satisfy that chocolate craving better then a slice of this delicious, moist chocolate cake. We all love this cake, definitely something I will be making over and over again.
It is a combination of three different recipes which I put together to make one amazing cake. The cake recipe is from Add a Pinch, the condensed milk frosting is from Natasha's Kitchen and the buttercream is from my german chocolate cupcakes


Ingredients-

cake
2 cups of flour
2 cups of sugar
3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt 
1/4 cup brewed coffee
1 cup of milk
1/2 cup veg oil
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup boiling water

condensed milk filling/frosting-
1 cup of unsalted butter at room temperature
2/3  condensed milk
1/4 cup water
3 eggs yolks
4 oz semi sweet chocolate chips

buttercream for decorating and piping (optional)
2 oz cream cheese (softened)
1/4 cup of unsalted butter (softened)
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 TB milk

Chocolates for decorating, I used milk chocolate DOVE 

Directions:

Fried Chicken Tenders


I absolutely love fried chicken, I really don't know anyone who doesn't. What I don't like is getting my hands dirty while eating around the bones. This is why I love using chicken tenders. This chicken is so tasty, it is seasoned well and the crunchy coating is amazing. 

I like to marinate the the chicken overnight, this insures that the chicken tenders are moist and seasoned well. 


Ingredients:

marinade-
2 pounds chicken tenders
1 cup butter milk
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp paprika


for the breading-
1 1/2 cups of flour
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
3/4 tsp garlic powder
3/4 tsp paprika
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3 tb buttermilk

2-3 cups vegetable oil for frying

Instructions:

 In a large ziplock bag, combine chicken tenders and all the ingredients for the marinade. Seal the bag tightly and mix it all together. I like to place the bag into a bowl (incase there is any leakage) and place into the fridge overnight, or at least 4-6 hours.

To make the breading, in a medium bowl, combine flour, salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika and baking powder. Stir together to combine. Add the 3 TB of buttermilk, and stir. This will make some lumps in the coating which will adhere to the chicken and make that yummy crispy crust. 

Dip the marinated chicken tenders into the flour coating and set aside onto a parchment lined sheet. Press the coating in firmly so the clumps adhere to the meat 

Heat 2-3 cups of veg oil on medium-high heat in a skillet with high sides. 
Prepare a large plate lined with paper towels. Place chicken into the hot oil, do not overcrowd. I fry 3-4 pieces at a time. 
Cook until golden brown on the bottom, and then flip and cook until the other side is golden. Remove the chicken onto the prepared plate. 

Fry the remaining chicken. This chicken tastes best when it is fresh and hot. 
But we still eat it the next day to. Kids love to dip it into ranch and bbq sauce, It is also amazing in a hoagie bread for a chicken sandwich (with some ranch, lettuce and tomatoes).

Enjoy!


Zoo in January


We had no school today! Yay! Plus there was a break in the rain, so I decided to take the kidos out to the zoo followed by lunch. It was a last minute decision, and after a swift breakfast, we bundled up  in hats and coats and headed off. Apparently, we were not the only people who had the same idea, the parking was packed and the lines were long. But thankfully we didn't have to wait in line since we are members. 

We strolled though the zoo, and the kids took in the sights. I love seeing their excited faces when they see something new. William loved the penguins, and didn't want to leave them, he kept waving to them, disappointed that they didn't wave back :)

After pushing the stroller up and down, we were tired and hungry. We ate the the Zoo restaurant. We had cheeseburgers and chicken strips with beer battered fries. Yum!

It was quite a lovely day, and I am glad I decided to do something spontaneous, instead of doing the usual cleaning and cooking all day long :)

Heres a look into our day 







William's 2nd Birthday



My little boy has turned 2! It seems like just yesterday that we celebrated Williams 1st birthday, but here we are a full year later. I went back to look at his new born photos and I still find it hard to grasp that this little itty baby turned into such an energetic toddler.




William adores Curious George, so naturally we went with George for the party theme.