Scrappin’ snackin’

When I am planning to scrapbook for 10-12 hours – either at home or with friends at a crop – I don’t want to be interrupted to prepare meals. So I plan to have certain favorite, quick foods on hand before I start.

When I go to daylong crops with friends, we plan and coordinate what we’re bringing. Below you’ll find recipes for some of the foods we enjoy when we get together.

However, when I host a retreat at Mountain Mamas Retreats, what I cook for the women is more involved. You can see some of those recipes – from the baked berry French toast with glazed applewood-smoked bacon that I serve for Sunday brunch to the black bean and pumpkin chili – in a slideshow at our website www.mountainmamasretreats.com. This year, build-your-own caramel apple bars are trendy. Because that’s a messy food to eat, we slice our apples and then add the caramel and candy toppings.

When I’m working at the retreat house, I’m there to cook, not scrapbook. But when I’m scrapbooking, I want to grab, snack and get back to work. And it doesn’t hurt to splurge a little if it’s decadent. Here’s a selection of the things I have on hand to eat:

DEVILED CHEX MIX
3 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon ground chili powder
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup assorted unsalted nuts, such as peanuts, almonds, walnuts, pecans
3 cups Rice Chex® cereal
3 cups Corn Chex® cereal
3 cups Wheat Chex® cereal
1 cup miniature cheese crackers
1 cup miniature pretzels

In small bowl, mix sugar, paprika, chili powder, curry powder, cumin, coriander, pepper and salt; set aside.

In large microwavable bowl, combine oil and nuts. Microwave uncovered on High about 2 minutes or until fragrant. Stir in cereals, crackers and pretzels until evenly coated. Stir in sugar mixture until evenly coated.

Microwave uncovered on High 2 to 3 minutes, stirring every minute, until mixture is thoroughly heated. Spread on paper towels to cool. Store in airtight container.

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A pepperoni roll during assembly

PEPPERONI ROLLS – a West Virginia invention

Someone in Marion County got the notion to bake pepperoni in bread dough for Italian American coal miners to carry in their lunchboxes.

What follows is my recipe. But my business partner at the retreat house omits the salami and adds a slice of Kraft Deluxe American cheese to each roll.

Two loaves Rhodes frozen bread dough, or 24 dinner rolls, thawed
3/4 pound thin sliced deli sandwich pepperoni
1/4 pound thin sliced salami
Mozzarella or provolone cheese (optional) sliced is more manageable than shredded

Cut the bread dough loaves each into 12 equal pieces. Working with one piece at a time, roll out the dough till it’s about the size of a deck of cards. Stack together about 3 slices pepperoni and one slice salami (and a slice of cheese if you’re using). Roll up. Roughly chop it with your knife on your workspace (this releases oils from the meat to make a good orange “grease spot” on the bottom of the roll.) Put it in the center of the dough. Fold in the short ends and then roll up the long ends. Place it in a greased 13-by-9-inch pan to double in size — about 12 rolls per pan. Bake according to the dough package directions. Rub with butter when they come out of the oven. Makes two dozen.

Scarecrow crunch is a fall snack mix that’s making the rounds on Pinterest. You can ad-lib and add your own ingredients if there’s something you don’t like or don’t have.

SCARECROW CRUNCH

4 cups Kettle corn or plain popcorn or 2 6-ounce boxes caramel popcorn with peanuts
1 24-ounce bag candy corn
Chocolate Teddy Grahams or Chocolate Pepperidge Farm Goldfish
4 cups crunchy oatmeal cereal squares (such as Life cereal)
4 cups tiny twist pretzels
2 cups Reese’s Pieces

Mix together in a big bowl. Store in an airtight container.

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REESE’S CUP COOKIE BROWNIES – found in a recipe booklet with the Pampered Chef brownie pan and circulated on Pinterest.

2 small scoops OR half of a break-and-bake square of chocolate chip cookie dough on bottom – push down with Tart Shaper (or your fingers).

Then place a small Reese’s cup upside down on the cookie dough. 

Using a Medium Scoop drop brownie mix on top of Reese’s Cup. 

Bake at 350 for about 16-20 minutes. (Until brownie is done) Immediately flip onto cooling rack.

TACO SOUP

from my friend Donna

1 envelope taco seasoning
1 envelope Hidden Valley Ranch salad dressing
1 pound of ground beef, browned
1 can light red kidney beans
1 can corn
1 bottle Spicy V8 juice
1 bottle original V8 juice
Tortilla chips

Mix everything but the chips and heat through. Serve with the chips.

What do you eat when you’re scrapbooking with friends? What do you take when a crop requires you bring a covered dish?

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2 responses to “Scrappin’ snackin’

  1. Superb blog! Do you have any hints for aspiring writers? I’m hoping to start my own website soon but I’m a little
    lost on everything. Would you suggest starting with a free platform like WordPress or go
    for a paid option? There are so many choices out there that I’m completely confused .. Any tips? Appreciate it!

    • I have a food blog on Google’s Blogger and this blog here. The choices can be overwhelming.

      I have, three times, gone through Google Apps to buy domain names and they cost $10 each. If you go to GoDaddy, it’s $12 I think. I have never used but I have heard of a place called NameCheap.

      When I was developing my scrapbooking blog, I went round and round for 3 weeks trying to figure out what I wanted to do. I don’t like the look of .blogspot or .wordpress at the end of my address. But for now I am sticking with WordPress.com. I decided to not pay $70 a year for a fully customizable, ad-free WordPress site until I determined how committed I was to a scrapbooking blog. (Not to be confused with WordPress.org, which is the free software to build WordPress sites that are self-hosted, meaning you are paying to host it somewhere with your own domain name without a wordpress suffix.)

      I could’ve gone with hosting my blog on Google and spending only $10 and building it in Sites BUT I don’t like their templates as well as WordPress’s.

      I have found another site that is more user-friendly and has even cooler templates: Wix.com. However, to pay them to host your site, it’s like $16 a month I think. (I’m sorry if my info is messed up. I have looked at SO MANY options they all run together.) Anyway, on Wix, if you have a free site, they put an ad for themselves on it and they leave the .wix.com at the end of your domain name. I don’t like that.

      I heard advice from Lain Ehmann to buy your domain name one place and host your site somewhere else. I looked into Hostgator and Bluehost and they seem to be worth their cost. However, if you think you can pay $3.95 per month there, you’ll soon discover that’s if you pay for 3 years at a time. I am not committed enough yet to drop $142 on this project.

      I decided, with the launch of our new Idea Book coming up (this was months ago), that I had to make a decision. I would just dive in and start getting my blog set up on WordPress for free. Then later I would explore how to get a domain name I own to direct back to it. I got mixed up looking at all my options.

      I am not as savvy as some people at this and I hope I haven’t muddied things for you. I think I know just enough to be dangerous.

      Maybe someone savvier than I can correct me if I’m wrong on this … as I understand it, you have to have a place to host the domain name even if you just want to set it to direct somewhere. That’s where I got overwhelmed and stingy while looking at all the options.

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