Homemade square-ish goldfish crackers

Last week my friend Amy mentioned Smitten Kitchen’s goldfish cracker recipe on Facebook and since I had all of the ingredients on hand I decided Lil and I would make them the next day.  The next morning after I cleaned up from breakfast I gathered all of the stuff I needed, which thankfully wasn’t much.  You need a food processor, a little cheese, some flour, salt and onion powder, easy peasy.  We buy our cheese from Costco and because of the size we grate it right away and freeze it in usable portions so that made these crackers a snap to make.

My little chef was a big help. She poured everything into the food processor and probably ate more cheese than she put in the bowl.  She tried really hard to roll some of the dough with her really cool alligator rolling pin, but just couldn’t get it to work.

kitchen helper

kitchen helper

Finally I rolled some out for her and gave her a knife (a really real knife! I know!) for her to cut some crackers herself. When Waldo walked away he whispered to me ‘do you know she has a real knife?’ I laughed and said that I did know and I was watching her. She’s never going to learn how to use a knife if we don’t let her. He rolled his eyes and walked away. And she did do fine and besides those knifes are almost too dull to cut a red pepper so I wasn’t too worried.

kitchen helper

I didn’t have a small fish shaped cookie cutter or any other small cutters so I just used a knife and cut square-ish shapes.

Homemade square-ish goldfish crackers

I think they turned out pretty well. So did Lily.

Kitchen helper

When we went shopping this weekend I picked up a set of 6 small cookie cutters and made more crackers this morning. They turned out really cute.

More goldfish crackers not shaped like fish

More goldfish crackers not shaped like fish

Popsicles made less messy

I had a brilliant moment a few days ago and I know I’m not inventing the wheel here, but I had to share.

Lil’s cousins Brock and Bryce were visiting and they had just got back from the park with my In-laws. The kids were hot and wanted a snack. I had made Lil some strawberry banana surprise Popsicles a few days before so I gave each of them one and we all went out to the backyard to keep the mess down.  Brock was sitting on a sheet with my Mother in Law when he started complaining that he didn’t like how the popsicle juice was getting on his arm. I had a flash of brilliance, I went inside and grabbed 3 small paper plates from the pantry and made a slit in the middle with a sharp paring knife. I went outside, asked Brock for his popsicle and popped it in the slit. He was thrilled. My Mother in Law was amazed and I was pretty darn happy since cleanup just got a lot easier. I put Lily and Bryce’s popsicles on a plate too and everyone was happy.

Eating popsicles

Brock and his Popsicle


Eating popsicles

Lil and her Popsicle


Eating popsicles

Lily and Bryce with their Popsicles

Like I said I didn’t invent this, I have seen people put candles through paper plates for vigils and I’ve seen ear candles the same way. I just haven’t seen popsicles like this before. With Summer and the hot weather coming up I thought some people might find this useful.

Oh and the Strawberry and banana surprise popsicles couldn’t be easier to make. I put a banana in my small food processor along with some sliced up strawberries. Once it was all chopped up I added some plain yogurt and a splash of orange juice. Pulsed it again to mix it together and spooned it into my new popsicle molds. I highly recommend the molds by the way, they are super sturdy and way cute.

Happy Early Holidays Everyone

Christmas has come early to the house of Jinx this year.  I don’t know exactly where it all started but I think it was when my Sister-in-law Katie said something on Facebook about putting up her tree already and it kind of snowballed from there.  I mentioned to to Waldo and he said that it was a great idea to put the tree up now, that way we’d get more time to enjoy it.  I told my Mother-in-law what we were planning and she loved the idea.  Now we have our tree up in our family room, my MIL has her tree up in the livingroom and Katie has all of her other decorations up (her house looks great) and her tree will be up any day now.
Christmas Tree 2011

The tree was just the beginning though.  I’ve already spent one afternoon baking and gifted our new next door neighbor a lovely box full of Holiday Cheer.
Early Holiday Chocolate Chip And Mint Cookies

I made two different cookies and rice crispy treats all with a mint theme.  Here are my chocolate chip cookies with a hint of mint.  I cut up Andes Mints for these.  I also made Triple Chocolate and mint Crinkle cookies.  I added chopped up Candy Cane Kisses and Andes Mints to the crinkle cookies. I can’t believe I didn’t get a picture of those. And now I can’t even find the recipe online. I got it from last December’s Food Network Magazine and it is amazing.

Cut Up Peppermint Kisses

These are the chopped up Candy Cane Kisses that I put on top of the rice crispy treats.  I loved them.  Waldo informed me he’d rather have semi-sweet chocolate then white minty chocolate. All the sudden I have no idea who he is anymore.

Happy Cookie Girl

Lily got to enjoy a little cookie after her lunch and she thought it was the greatest thing EVER.


Here are my finished packages. One to my Sister-in-law Katie and her family and the other two to neighbors.  We tried to give the neighbor’s theirs tonight, but only one of them was home.  We might be forced to eat the other box,  you know I can’t give away 3 day old treats, it would do. Forced I say.

Hey you can see the Triple Chocolate and Mint Crinkle Cookies in the box, they are covered in powered sugar. Yay I did sort of get a picture of them.

Early Holiday Packages

Happy Early Holidays Everyone!  Enjoy!

All of these pictures were taken with my phone in less then stellar light. Sorry.

Random Mobile Shots

While these aren’t totally random, they are all from my phone.

We’ve been to the zoo in Boise twice since moving here and both times we got Lily some popcorn. She loved it, but we hated that it was full of crap so we decided to buy an air popper. I found one at a thrift store for $5.99 and it’s been sitting in a box since that day. We bought some organic popping corn at the food Co-op, so now it was just a matter of deciding that I was adventurous enough to try making it. Today I decided was that day.

Popping pop corn

Lil's checking it out.

I read that you can put 1/2 cup of popcorn in the chamber and that makes about 18 cups of popped corn.  I didn’t want nearly that much so I used the little butter cup that comes with the machine filled most of the way full and was happy with the bowl full of popcorn we got.  It was still too much, but not as bad as 18 cups.

Popping pop corn

The little kearnels are heating up and dancing around.

Lily wasn’t a fan of the machine’s noise, I tried and tried to get a picture of her with her hands over her ears, but didn’t manage it.

Popping pop corn

The corn is starting to fly.

Once it started popping it went very fast.

Popping pop corn


I started to panic that my bowl was going to overflow, but luckily it was just perfect.

Popping pop corn

The blur is Lily trying to hold in her excitment.

Popping pop corn

Which one should she try?

Popping pop corn

This was her fourth or fifth handful.

She loved it and kept stuffing pieces in my mouth because she just had to share the yumm.   She ran upstairs to tell her Daddy all about it too.  I think the Popcorn was a huge success and using the air popper was crazy easy.

p.s.  Lily tinkled in the potty this morning.  YAY!

Grilled potato wedges

I saw part of a episode of Grill It! with Bobby Flay where he was making some grilled potato wedges and both Waldo and I said almost at the same time that we had to make those.  They looked so good and sounded really easy to make.  I was surprised to find out that they were in fact very easy to make, if you don’t burn your oil.

par-boiling potatoes

Parboiling taters

Grilled potato wedges

My finshed wedges


Grilled Potato Wedges with Hot Garlic and Red Chili

adapted from Bobby Flay’s Grilled Potato Wedges with Hot Garlic, Red Chili, Parmesan and Parsley

  • 4 russet potatoes, scrubbed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup canola oil Sunflower oil
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (which I totally forgot to add)

Put the potatoes in a pot of cold water, add some kosher salt and bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Simmer slowly till soft but firm (about 40 minutes).  The potatoes must be cooked through and fork tender, but still holding their shape. Drain and set aside to cool slightly, then cut each potato lengthwise into 8 wedges.

I carefully covered the wedged (which were on a cookie sheet) with some sunflower oil, salt and pepper, then I wiggled them around to coat all the sides. Grill until golden brown and cooked through, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a serving bowl.

Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan until it begins to shimmer, this is very important, shimmer not simmer.  Do not try to simmer the oil, it doesn’t go well. Remove from the heat and immediately add the garlic and red chili flakes and let sit for 1 minute. Season the oil with salt and pepper, to taste, and drizzle over the potatoes. Sprinkle with the cheese (if you don’t forget) and serve immediately.


I wish I would have had the parsley that the original recipe called for, but I forgot to grab it at the store. I think it might have added a nice herby flavor.  And I really wish I hadn’t forgotten about the cheese, but you know what, I didn’t notice anything was missing until I saw the cheese on the counter after I was done eating.  Next time I’ll add the cheese for sure.

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