Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Mini Crustless Kale and Broccoli Quiches

These Mini Kale and Broccoli Quiches are the perfect on-the-go breakfast to get your day the healthy and satisfying kick it needs!

Mini

I am just in love with springtime. I love that it brings on new life, beautiful colors, warm weather, and an excuse to eat ice cream.

**ahem**

I meant a reason to eat healthy!

No but really, I don't know what it is, but something about spring makes me think of eating quiche.

I just want to make it all the time, and keep enough on hand to eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

I dont see anything wrong with that scenario!

Whether you love it as much as me or not, make sure to make some for your kids or yourself to have a perfectly easy breakfast (or lunch or dinner) on-the-go, and make some extra to freeze (and give to me of course!)...

You'll find this baby over at Goodlife Eats today!

Happy (almost) Easter everyone!

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Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Quinoa and Chia Seed Toasted Granola Bars

An updated version of delicious Quinoa and Chia Seed Toasted Granola Bars that will give you a perfect start to the day, AND they are kid-approved!

 Quinoa and Chia Seed Toasted Granola Bars Recipe Title Photo | Carla's Confections #granolabars #quinoa #chiaseed

Isn't it funny how fast time seems to go? I mean, how is it already April? It literally feels like time is slipping through our fingers. And although I only work 30 hours a week in my outside job, it seems as though I have NO time on my hands. Between the job, three different bible studies I am a part of, volunteering at church as well as church services in itself, hanging with friends and family and everything else going on, the blog has unfortunately taken a back burner. And I am not sure why either, because the blog is the job that I am passionate about. There seems to be something wrong with that!

I go back and look at some of the photos I have taken and my heart does a little leap. Does that happen to you with your job?

I think that's when you know you are doing what you love. When your heart leaps and you can't wait to get back to doing that very thing!

I finally got the chance this week to make some new recipes and get pictures of them, and it brought me back to how much I love this whole blog thing! As crazy and time consuming as it is, I really do love it! And I hope you love listening to me ramble about it too! ;)

 photo GranolaBars2_zps3da23d65.jpg

Speaking of new recipes, have you heard of ZipList? It is a pretty awesome tool that is reaching across the blogoshpere, and it makes it super easy for you to save recipes to your very own recipe box and even add the ingredients from any recipe you love to a digital shopping list so you dont have to write it all down and then forget the list at home (yes I am very guilty of this!!).

Now ZipList is a part of Carla's Confections and right at your finger tips to get started on trying your favorite recipes easier than ever! Right under the recipe title on Carla's Confections, you will see a "save recipe" button that you can do just that! As well as on my main navigation, you will find two new buttons: Recipe Box and Shopping List where it will take you straight to your pages where you can add ingredients to your shopping list, and review all the recipes you have saved. You just need to create a free account and youre free to go!

Pretty cool huh? Let's get to cookin!

 photo GranolaBars4_zpsc9d216cf.jpg

I made this recipe as a guest post for another blog a while back, and while it is well liked, there has been a lot of questions regarding it, so it is high time to answer the questions and show you my updated version.

I tested this recipe four different ways, just to make sure I had it all right, just so YOU can have the best tasting, and best "stuck-together" version of these granola bars.

I made the four different versions all in one day, so you can imagine how many granola bars I had sitting around the house! Thank goodness they are healthy for you, otherwise we'd all be 400 pounds!

One of my favorite things when I make recipes is to see everyone else enjoying them, and even better than that is when kids enjoy them. You know how brutal kids can be with food. They won't hold back if they don't like something, so it is like Christmas seeing kids devouring this stuff.

I was able to watch not one, but TWO kids scarfing these granola bars down, and it literally made my day! And the best part about it is how stinking healthy they are! Packed full of chia seeds, quinoa, flax seed, peanut butter, and tons of other healthy ingredients, you won't have to worry about your kids eating those sugar-filled storebought granola bars. And they will be non the wiser with how delicious these are!

It is spring and the best time to be packing your kids these healthy snacks! And I won't judge if you steal some for yourselves too!

Happy Spring!

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Quinoa & Chia Seed Toasted Granola Bars | Printable Recipe

makes roughly 14 bars

ingredients:

-2 cups old fashioned oats
-1/2 cup raw or roasted sunflower seeds
-1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
-1/4 cup chia seeds
-1/2 cup ground flaxseed (also called flax meal)
-1/2 cup raw almonds, roughly chopped
-1/2 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed and drained
-1/2 cup honey
-1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
-pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg (a couple grinds of fresh nutmeg if using)
-1/4 cup raisins
-1/2 cup dark chocolate chips (optional)


directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 375˚F/190˚C. Line a large baking tray with parchment paper, and lay out the oats, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and roughly chopped almonds on the baking sheet and toast in the preheated oven 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally until golden brown.

2. Meanwhile, combine the peanut butter and honey in a small bowl, stirring with a fork to combine.

3. Once the oats mixture are golden brown, combine those, along with the remaining dry ingredients into a large bowl and stir roughly to combine. Add in the peanut butter/honey mixture and mix well to combine.

4. Line an 8x8 roasting pan with parchment paper and turn out the combined mixture into the pan, pressing down with a spatula to get as even and flat as possible.

5. Place bars in the fridge minimum of a couple hours to firm up. Remove and cut into desired bar sizes and store in the fridge in an airtight container until ready to eat.

RECIPE NOTES:

-This is a soft, chewy granola bar recipe; if they are stored at room temperature, they will not hold together. They need to be stored in cold temperatures to stay together. They will start to fall apart if they are out of the fridge too long.

-Bars should be good to eat for at least a couple weeks when stored in the refrigerator.

-Feel free to substitute craisins for the raisins, different nuts or any chocolate variety you would like.

-Yes the quinoa is uncooked. I promise you will love the added crunch it gives the bars :)


Recipe adapted from Carla's Confections, which was inspired by Two Peas and their Pod

© Carla's Confections 2014



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Sunday, March 2, 2014

Baked Shrimp Po' Boy with Sriracha Mayo

Seriously mouth watering sandwich that will take you down south! This Baked Shrimp Po' Boy with Sriracha Mayo will certainly have your heart singing. Not to mention your stomach a-growlin! ;)

 Baked Shrimp Po' Boy Recipe | Carla's Confections #shrimp #poboyrecipe #poboy #sriracha #srirachamayo

Can I just tell you that I have seriously been wanting to make this sandwich for over a year?!

And then I had to go and have one of the best versions of it in Portland, only ever-so-slightly raising the bar for myself to make it.

I was sort of extremely nervous to make an at-home version, because, I mean, can you really compete with the best??

The answer, my friends...

YES!

Every. Time. I. Look. At. These. Photos. I. Crave. Another. One.

I really could not be more impressed with the way these turned out. We even had leftovers the next day and they were just as good! (If you want to go this route, see notes at bottom of recipe) And I still want more! Every single day.

 Baked Shrimp Po' Boy Recipe | Carla's Confections #shrimp #poboyrecipe #poboy #sriracha #srirachamayo

I am a fairly new convert of Sriracha hot sauce, but for no other reason than I haven't had many things that I would think Sriracha would taste good on, if that statement makes any sense.

Even though I have only had it a few times in my life, I instantly knew that on my version of Shrimp Po' Boys needed Sriracha Mayonnaise.

I absolutely guarantee there will be no going back once you cross the Sriracha Mayo line.

Nor will you want to go back!




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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Caramelized Onion, Spinach and Bacon Pizza

Delicious homemade pizza with the amazing flavors of a garlic cream sauce, caramelized red onions, crispy bacon and sauteed spinach. This Caramelized Onion, Spinach and Bacon Pizza will ensure you never buy pizza out again! ;)

 Caramelized Onion, Spinach and Bacon Pizza Recipe | Carla's Confections #caramelizedonion #bacon #pizza

Have you missed me? I have sure missed you! It is amazing how quickly time can go and how easily life can get in the way.

I can assure you I am back at it this week, and you certainly don't want to miss out on this recipe!

I am very much a one-flavor-of-pizza kinda girl, and that happens to be BBQ Chicken Pizza, because I mean, no explanation needed right?!

But this pizza! Oh man! It is one of my top two pizzas now! It is seriously insane! Looking at the photos now is making me drool and want a big ole bite!

Yeah its that good!

So go check the post out on GoodLife Eats and make the pizza tonight. Or for pizza Friday. Or for breakfast Wednesday.

Whatever floats your boat.

If you need me, Ill be in the corner hoarding this pizza.

 Caramelized Onion, Spinach and Bacon Pizza Recipe | Carla's Confections #caramelizedonion #bacon #pizza

Caramelized Onion, Spinach and Bacon Pizza on GoodLife Eats



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Monday, January 13, 2014

Chocolate Toffee Caramel Corn (GIVEAWAY CLOSED)

This twist on the classic Caramel Corn recipe will have your whole family going crazy. Chocolate Toffee Caramel Corn needs to go along with you next time you go to the movies, or better yet, on a picnic once the Polar Vortex is over. And if you like picnics, stay tuned to the end of the post for a really amazing giveaway!

 Chocolate Toffee Caramel Corn Recipe | Carla's Confections #chocolatetoffee #caramelcorn #recipe

Raise your hand if you are ready for warm weather.

You can't see it, but my hand is high high high in the air, waving madly, wishing hopefully that this act alone will somehow will summer (or even spring) into existence!

And I am on the west coast. I cant even imagine how those of you in the mid-west and the east are feeling.

Doesnt it feel like (unless you live in California of course), that winter is the longest season of all? I do like winter. I really do. But when it last practically half the year, I start to get a little tired of it, to say the least.

I am ready for warm weather and that is all there is to it.

 Chocolate Toffee Caramel Corn Recipe | Carla's Confections #chocolatetoffee #caramelcorn #recipe

Something else that I am ready for is to see the end of childhood hunger in America (and all over the world for that matter).

I know it seems like we talk about it all the time, but it is truly a huge problem and it breaks my heart to think of how many children go without eating everyday. Even if it doesnt appear from the outside that a child is going hungry, there might be some small signs to look out for. Look at these stats that are coming from No Kid Hungry:

-Nearly 1 in 5 children are going hungry everyday, and they might not look any different from other children. We may be missing the signs of hunger in a child.

-Hungry children are more likely to experience severe short and long-term health problems than children who receive proper nutrition.

-Hungry children are less likely to do well in school, get the proper education, and is less likely to be able to feed their own families when they grow up. It has much larger an effect than just the here and now.

But there are solutions to the problem at hand.

Fleischmann's Yeast and Karo Syrup reached out to me and some other bloggers to help spread awareness of the growing problem at hand. They asked us to help by #BakingADifference and creating our own fun twist on Karo's Classic Caramel Corn Recipe and sharing it, along with spreading awareness about Childhood Hunger in America and how we can make a difference at home.




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Thursday, January 9, 2014

Whole Wheat Garlic Parmesan Pita Chips

These Whole Wheat Garlic Parmesan Pita Chips are the perfect kick start to the new healthy you of 2014! A lot healthier than potato chips and are utterly delicious when dipped in homemade hummus! And they are easier than you think (the pitas are storebought!).

 Whole Wheat Garlic Parmesan Pita Chips | Carla's Confections

I know we are already almost two weeks into the new year (!!!!!!!), but it is never too late to start fresh right??

And while I will never say "no" to a good cookie or some homemade ice cream, sometimes it just feels right to reach for something on the healthier side to eat. Do you agree?

Since we are all trying to get over that holiday binge eating (or is that just me??), I thought I would start us all out in the new year with a healthy snack.

These Whole Wheat Garlic Parmesan Pita Chips are the perfect addition to some Homemade Garlic Hummus, or even some Arugula and Walnut Pesto. And it's **practically** guilt free. Or at least I like to think so...

You'll find the super easy recipe for these Pita Chips over at GoodLife Eats today. Stop on by and say hello :)



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Friday, December 20, 2013

Cookie Dough Truffles

These M&M Cookie Dough Truffles will knock your socks off this holiday season. Perfect as a last minute gift, or to munch on while ringing in the new year! Make sure these truffles pop up in your household sooner than later!

MnM Cookie Dough Truffles | Carla's Confections #cookiedough #mnm #truffles

It is really hard to believe we are less than a week from Christmas and less than two weeks from ringing in 2014. December flew by without any knowledge of it.

As we come to the close of the year, I feel it necessary to look back and remember what the year was like.

We spent ringing in 2013 up in Portland with my brother, sister-in-law, new niece and my parents celebrating the last day of 2012, immediately followed by hugs and goodbyes, and moving up to Vancouver, BC for my husband to start work on his very first movie production.

We were so stoked, albeit terrified of moving yet again to a new country, but the excitement for the new job overwhelmed it all. He was finally getting somewhere in his career. We were set for a three year visa, and a long term contract at Sony Pictures Imageworks.

Then July came around, and things changed. The next project Sony was set to work on would be on hiatus for at least 4-5 months. This meant the worst: we would be out of a job in a country we couldnt afford to stay in with no income.

We were forced to leave.

We packed up and left Vancouver at the end of August, but with some great prospects in mind! Matt had had a great interview with the dream company, and we were awaiting the answer of if we would be able to live and work in the USA, and better yet, close to home.

He got the job! He was hired from Pixar Animation Studio and was set to start work in late September.

Only, that wouldn't last either. Not 8 months, like it did at Sony. Not even 3 months, like our stint in Portland.

Nope this job wouldn't even last a whole work day.

Three hours.

Three hours at Pixar when they told him the unfortunate news that they would be unable to keep him. They had made the tough decision to push the movie production back 18 months that they hired him for, which meant there was absolutely no work for him to do.

Heart. Break.

The dream job in the dream city had slipped through our hands and we were left once again, job-less and house-less.

 MnM Cookie Dough Truffles | Carla's Confections #cookiedough #mnm #truffles

We cannot, however, look at the negatives without highlighting the positives.

You see, we have been trying to get pregnant for close to two years now, and we have been unsuccessful in the venture. We had gotten to the point that we needed to have it addressed.

When we came back (broken hearted) from San Fransisco and the loss of the dream job, we were fortunate enough to get incredible insurance for two months from the job that lasted 3 hours.

We decided it was high time to talk to our OB-Gyn.

We were so afraid she wouldn't be able to give us any good news or any plans of how to move forward.

Boy were we wrong! We found out just the opposite in fact! It turned out that I have severe Endometriosis, which prevents pregnancy. I went in for surgery, had the majority of it removed, and was placed on a three-month shot to get rid of any remaining Endometriosis!

Which means, that after the three month period in which the shot is active in my body, we will be able to try (hopefully successfully) to have babies!

We couldn't have been more relieved to get this news. As tough of news as it was, it gives us hope that there is a fix for this, and that we will be able to give our baby niece a cousin fairly soon!

And with the incredible insurance we were blessed with, we didnt have to pay a penny for the surgery. Talk about God's hand in that situation! There is no denying He had the perfect timing for that.

We also got to celebrate our niece's first birthday, where her Aunty Carla made her cake (first time using fondant! Eeeek!!), and we are finishing off the year (or Christmas anyway) by spending FIVE days in Disneyland!

I guess you could say this has been the best and worst year for my husband's career, but we have to realize too how blessed we are.

So even though we may not have a job right now, we do have a roof over our heads (and free rent!) family surrounding us, and an amazing 2014 to look forward to (and God willing, a baby to ring in 2015 maybe!!)

I hope that you and your family have a blessed Christmas and New Years and that even with all the tough things in the world right now, I hope you can look to the positives as well, such as these Cookie Dough Truffles ;)

 MnM Cookie Dough Truffles | Carla's Confections #cookiedough #mnm #truffles

I hope you can forgive me for the long (and lack of funny) post, but I promise to keep this part short and sweet...

literally.

These cookie dough truffles are seriously the cutest, and most perfect little bite sized treat, and I am giving you an excuse to eat the cookie dough before it gets baked into a cookie!

And it is egg-less so you dont need to fret on that count!

I know, I think of it all!

It is customizable to your favorite cookie dough ingredients, as well as the chocolate coating.

So treat Santa, your friends and family, or your New Years guests to a treat they won't soon forget!

These Cookie Dough Truffles won't last long, I can promise you that! Even my husband, who is not a fan of cookie dough (GASP!!) gobbled these babies up and asked for more!

Merry Christmas everyone! Have a cookie dough holiday!!!

 MnM Cookie Dough Truffles | Carla's Confections #cookiedough #mnm #truffles

M&M Cookie Dough Truffles | Printable Recipe




makes roughly 1 1/2 dozen truffles

ingredients:

-1 1/8 cup flour
-1/4 tsp baking soda
-1 stick (1/2 cup) salted butter, softened
-3/8 cup white sugar
-3/8 cup brown sugar
-1/2 tsp vanilla
-3 Tbsp milk
-3/4 cup mini M&M's (or your favorite addition)
-1 8oz bag white or dark chocolate melts, or your favorite

directions:

1. Beat the butter and sugars in a stand mixer on high until creamy and fluffy. Add in vanilla and milk and beat until combined. Turn the mixer to low and slowly add sugar and baking soda. Mix until combined and then stir in mini M&Ms.

2. Using a cookie scoop, scoop out the cookie dough into roughly the same size and roll them into balls, placing them onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. Do the same with the remaining cookie dough, and place in the freezer at least 30 minutes to harden.

3. Melt the white or dark chocolate in the microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring frequently, until fully melted. Stir in some canola oil, if needed to thin chocolate out.

4. Remove cookie dough balls from freezer, and using a fork, dip into melted chocolate, covering the entire cookie dough ball, and place back on the parchment. Drizzle more chocolate if desired and garnish with extra mini M&M's. Place in fridge to allow chocolate to harden and store in fridge to keep fresh longer. Store in airtight container.

© Carla's Confections 2013

Cookie Dough slightly adapted from Love & Olive Oil



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