All posts tagged snacks

Summer Popsicles

It feels like we’ve been waiting for Summer for a long time this year up in the Pacific Northwest. These last two weeks have been worth the wait! And with Summer finally here I thought some icy treats were in order.

I still have a few peaches in the freezer that we bought at their peak last Summer and I decided to mix those with some blueberries and homemade yogurt for a delicious afternoon snack. You can use whatever fruit you fancy. If you choose something like a blackberry or raspberry, you’ll want to strain the seeds before freezing. And you can also adjust the sweetness level according to your taste and whatever fruit you’re using. The peaches we had were pretty sweet, so we didn’t need that much honey.

Fruity Yogurt Pops

  • 1 cup peeled and pitted peaches, fresh or frozen
  • 1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 2 T honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Blend everything in the blender. If the fruit is frozen you can let it thaw a bit to make the blending easier.
  2. Pour into molds (whatever you have on hand – I’ve used little glasses before or dixie cups. I picked up the mold above at the local thrift store) and freeze.
  3. Enjoy!

Poutine: A Tribute to My Home and Native Land

I want you all to bear with me here. I know it may not look like the most appetizing snack, but poutine is absolutely delicious! You cannot eat it every day (because I’m pretty sure that you would suffer a heart attack by day six!), but you can try it on Canada Day, which coincidentally, is tomorrow.

Before you judge too harshly, remember that you have no problems with cheese fries, you may have even partaken of the chili cheese fries … this just improves upon the idea.

Poutine is basically fries, cheese curds and gravy. I can pretty much get this at any fast food place when I’m home and I even found poutine at the Utah State Fair (talk about a wonderful night!), but I have yet to find it in Texas.

Since my husband doesn’t like there to be any deep fat frying in the house, when I make this at home I use oven fries. It’s not ideal, but everything needs to be hot. Here I used my favorite take out fries(hello Five Guys!) and re-heated them. Next you layer on the cheese and gravy( do not use white chicken gravy). I don’t often have cheese curds in the house, so I just use shredded mozzarella. You  really just want something that melts well. Everything will then melt and be heavenly. You can eat the first few bites with your fingers, but then you have to use a fork because it gets messy.

I cannot properly describe to you the bliss that is poutine. Try it and you’ll see, or come over and I’ll make some for you!

p.s. Last night someone told me that July 1st is also National Pudding Day, but I don’t think that in any way compares to Poutine Canada Day!

Smoothies 2 Ways

If you have kids who don’t like to eat their fruits and veggies, chances are you’ve tried to give them smoothies. Who doesn’t love a good smoothie? Today we’re going to show you the way we each make smoothies for our families.

Sarah’s Version:

Now, I’m all for being healthy, but I also need a certain amount of sweetness. My kids actually really like Christina’s spinach smoothies, it’s just that I sometimes have a hard time with the color! So, this version is strictly my preference. I’ve tried using yogurt and honey, but those really taste “healthy,” and I want my smoothie to taste more like a fruity milk shake! Now, if you have dairy allergies feel free to substitute sorbet for the sherbet (p.s. I’ve always thought it was “sherbert.” Who knew?!) I generally use a mix of fresh and frozen fruit + sherbet + orange juice. How can you go wrong?!

Sarah’s Fruit Smoothie:

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups strawberries (cleaned and hulled)
  • 1 cup kiwi (peeled)
  • 1 cup frozen peaches
  • 2 cups orange juice
  • 1 cup orange sherbet

Directions:

  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend away!

This is one of the most basic recipes, but my entire family loves it. This recipe also works really well frozen. Just put the smoothie into popsicle molds, or paper cups, and place in the freezer. If you do go the popsicle route, you may want to switch out the kiwis. My six year old wasn’t a fan of the frozen kiwi seeds!

Christina’s Version:

I have only been making green smoothies for the past year. The first time I made one it was disgusting, and I didn’t want to try one ever again. But I soon found that the problem with my first attempt was a lack of water and ice. When you’re drinking a fruit smoothie it’s okay if some of the fruit pieces aren’t completely blended, but not so with a green smoothie (maybe you can picture me trying to stomach my chunky, warm, spinach smoothie – not so pretty).  What you’re after is a very cold temperature and a smooth almost thin consistency.

My friend Rachel introduced me to a recipe like the one below at her house. I was actually scared to try it because of my previous experience, but, boy, am I glad I did. I love this recipe. It is really sweet, not sweet like sherbet sweet, but way sweeter than you would expect.

To be honest, my older kids won’t drink this version because of the color, but my youngest and I love it!

Christina’s Green Smoothie:

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups spinach
  • 2 medium oranges (outer peel removed – I try to keep as much as the pith as I can intact for added fiber)
  • 1 large banana
  • 1 cup ice
  • 2 cups cold water

Directions:

  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend at highest setting. The consistency will be quite thin.
  2. Feel great that drinking something so tasty is so good for you!  I promise you’ll barely notice the spinach.  I dare you to try it. :)

So how do you like your smoothies? Red or green?

Granola Bars

I like to make as many snacks as I can for my family so I know what we’re eating. We’re getting ready for a car trip this weekend and while I appreciate that most people would probably take the night before a get-a-way to pack and prepare the household for their absence, I tend to be more worried about the menu! What kind of things are we going to enjoy eating in the car? I’m not above fast food, but I do want to make sure that we’re still eating reasonably well on the road.  I came up with this recipe to bring with us. I think it’s pretty good, I hope that there will still be some granola bars left when we get in the car!

Obviously, you can alter the recipe to suit your own tastes. Don’t like craisins? Leave them out. Love almonds? Throw some in! Have fun and be creative.

Granola Bars

3 cups rolled oats
1 cup whole wheat four
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup sesame seeds
¼ cup sunflower seeds
½ cup craisins
½ cup raisins
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix together oats, flour, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, craisins, chocolate chips, raisins, and salt in a large bowl. Mix the rest of the ingredients together in another bowl and then add to the oat mixture. Stir until everything is evenly moist. Place in greased 9 x 13 pan and bake at 350° for 25 minutes. You want them to start turning golden brown around the edges. Let cool, cut into squares or bars.

note: I didn’t feel like they were quite as thick as I would like them in the 9 x 13 pan so I squished them to the side a bit to get them to the thickness that I wanted (see photo below).

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