Posted in Food, Lifestyle

Recipe: Easy Pecan Turtle Candies

For the holidays, I am always looking for quick and easy recipes to add to the holiday feast. When a friend told me about this Pecan Turtle recipe, I thought it had to be too good to be true.  I mean, we are talking SUPER easy to make. YES! I wanted to share this recipe with you through a mini Blog post (because frankly, there really isn’t much involved in making these Pecan Turtle Candies, but they were too good not to share. Enjoy!

Pecan Turtle Candies
Pecan Turtle Candies

What You Will Need to Make the Pecan Turtle Candies

  • (2) Family Size Bags of Rolo Candy (unwrapped)
  • 12 oz. bag of Snyder of Hanover SNAPS Pretzels (the little lattice square ones)
  • 10 oz. bag Pecan Halves
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons of Coarse Sea Salt
  • Parchment Paper (to line Baking Sheet)

Preparing the Pecan Turtle Candies

  1. Preheat oven 350 degrees. Line baking sheet with Parchment Paper.
  2. Line Parchment Paper with SNAPS pretzels. Place one unwrapped Rolo candy on top of each pretzel SNAP.
  3. Bake for approximately 4-5 minutes until Rolo is soft but not completely melted.
  4. Remove from oven and sprinkle Rolo with coarse Sea Salt.
  5. Push one half Pecan down on to the soft Rolo/Sea Salt/Pretzel combo to form the “Turtle” candy. Cool completely to allow Rolo to harden before removing from Parchment Paper.
  6. Repeat until all Rolos are used.

That’t it! So easy, yet such gooey goodness. The sweet chocolate and caramel Rolo is the prefect pair with the salty pretzel and pecan flavor. I prefer to chill the Pecan Turtle Candies in the refrigerator before serving. The “chill” just add more chew to the candies.

Pecan Turtle Candies with Lemon Buttercream Stuffed PIzzelles
Pecan Turtle Candies with Lemon Buttercream Stuffed Pizzelles

In addition to serving the Pecan Turtle Candies at my holiday dinner, I also prepared the Lemon Buttercream Filled Pizzelles (shown plated above with the candies.) You can check out that recipe as well right HERE, on the Blog.

PIN ME: Pecan Turtle Candies
PIN ME: Pecan Turtle Candies

I would love to hear your comments on how these yummy treats turned out once you try making them for yourself, and if you and your guests loved them as much as mine did. Please feel free to share your comments below.

All the Best,

Jamie

 

 

 

Posted in Food, Lifestyle

Recipe: Lemon Buttercream Stuffed Pizzelles

Hey all! So recently, I was invited to a “cookie exchange” party and am super excited to share a not-so-ordinary cookie with the guests. After searching high and low for what cookie to bake for the party, I decided on yummy Lemon Buttercream Stuffed Pizzelles. I just did a trial run of the recipe (of course I wanted to try them before serving them to guests 😉 and am so pleased with the results. I wanted to share the recipe with all of you as well! If you haven’t done so already, be sure to subscribe to my email list on the side of this page and I will email you a printable of this recipe in case you wanted to try them for yourself. You WON’T be disappointed!

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What You Will Need to Make Lemon Buttercream Stuffed Pizzelles

First and foremost, in order to make the pizzelle cookie shells you will need a Pizzelle Maker! I purchased a Cuisinart Pizzelle Press and am pleasantly surprised with how easy it is to use. The press included a wooden rod for rolling the pizzelles, which also came in handy for this recipe. You will also need something to stuff the cookies with the Lemon Buttercream icing, and instead of a piping bag I decided to purchase this cookie decorating/piping gadget, the Wilton Dessert Decorator ULTRA, that is SO easy to use. Love it! Of course, a standard piping bag would also work, so whatever you prefer will ultimately give you the same delicious cookie result. In case you are interested in either, I added shopping links to bottom of the post as well 😉

Cuisinart Pizzelle Press
Cuisinart Pizzelle Press

 

Wilton Dessert Decorator ULTRA
Wilton Dessert Decorator ULTRA

For the cookie ingredients, you will need the following (yields approximately 3 dozen stuffed Pizzelles):

Batter ingredients:

  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 oz. margarine
  • 2 oz. unsalted butter
  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. Vanilla extract
Pizzelle Batter Ingredients
Pizzelle Batter Ingredients

Buttercream Icing ingredients:

  • 4 cups powdered/confectioners sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) softened butter
  • 2-3 tsp. Lemon Extract (depending on how strong you prefer the lemon flavor)
  • 2 Tbsp. of milk
  • Yellow food coloring (optional)

How to Prepare the Pizzelle Shells to be Stuffed

  1. Combine butter and margarine in a small bowl and melt in microwave. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl (I use an electric stand mixer for even mixing as I add the ingredients), add the sugar and eggs and mix on high for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the melted and cooled butter and margarine and mix for another minute.
  4. Add flour and Vanilla and mix on low until all ingredients are completely combined.
  5. Preheat your Pizzelle Press. Pour some batter with a small scoop (I used the one that came with the Cuisinart Pizzelle Press) onto the pizzelle maker and bake for approximately 1 minute, or until “ready” light turns green if your Press has the option.
  6. Remove the Pizzelles from the Press and roll them around a wooden dowel or similar item while hot and place them rolled seam down to cool and harden. NOTE: Be sure to roll hot, as the Pizzelles get brittle and harden fairly quickly as they start to cool. Once cooled, they will maintain their rolled shape.
Rolled Pizzelles Ready to be Stuffed
Rolled Pizzelles Ready to be Stuffed

Preparing the Lemon Buttercream Filling and Stuffing the Pizzelles

  1. Add the powdered/confectioners sugar to mixing bowl.
  2. Add butter, softened.
  3. Next, add the Lemon Extract and 2 Tbsp of milk.
  4. Beat on low until all ingredients are incorporated, while periodically stopping and scraping the sides of the bowl. Add lemon food coloring (optional) drop by drop for desired color. Once all incorporated, mix on medium-high speed until desired consistency for filling your Pizzelle shells.
  5. Add the filling mixture to your piping bag or press and start stuffing! I find it easier to stuff one side shallow and then stuff the other side fuller to give an even distribution of Lemon Buttercream yumminess.

Refrigerate before serving. This allows the Buttercream to thicken a bit more and adds some extra “crisp” to the lemon flavor. I hope you have the opportunity to make these for yourself and to share, and would love for you to comment below with feedback once you do!

Looking for another tasty recipe to share? Check out my “Easy to Make Caramel Apple Slices” for a new spin on a popular sweet treat. These are sure to please.

Lemon Buttercream Stuffed Pizzelles
Lemon Buttercream Stuffed Pizzelles


Posted in Lifestyle, Travel

Making Holiday Memories with Kennywood Park Holiday Lights

Each year, we make it a family tradition to visit a Christmas lights display near our home in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area. This year, we decided to give another location attraction a try! We have frequently visited Kennywood Park for amusement fun in the summer. Once we heard they also have a Holiday Lights display, we were all in! Though many of the rides and eateries in the park are closed during the Holiday Lights festivities, there is still LOTS to do and see.

First Impression of Kennywood Park Holiday Lights

Upon arriving to the park, we were pleasantly surprised that parking was actually FREE for the Holiday Lights festivities — score! We visited on a Saturday evening and didn’t have to wait in any long lines to enter the park. We were able to order the tickets a head of time online through the Kennywood Park website. Nonetheless, we skipped the ticket lines in the park and went straight through security. On a side note, there was a military discount offered for ticket purchases for up to 6 guests when we went. Be sure to inquire about the discount if a member of your party is a veteran for some extra savings.

Light Displays at Kennywood Park Holiday Lights

When you enter the park, you are greeted by a beautiful array of twinkling and dancing lights throughout the park! Many of the trees and landscape are strung with lights. Several of the rides that were operational glowed with hues of green and red, or were also strung with lights. Our favorite “ride” that was decorated for the Kennywood Park Holiday Lights was Noah’s Ark  — super cool! Even the inside atmosphere of the rides were also decorated with all things Christmas.

Noah's Ark Kennywood Park Holiday Lights
Noah’s Ark Kennywood Park Holiday Lights

Toward the back of the park is a HUGE tree of lights that makes the perfect backdrop for family photos. My favorite light display was surrounding the lake that is situated toward the center of the park. Here, we were able to watch a light show where the lights “danced” and were synchronized to holiday tunes. This light show is performed on timed intervals throughout the evening and is something you don’t want to miss.

Nicholls 5 Kennywood Park Holiday Lights
Nicholls 5 Kennywood Park Holiday Lights

Games and Shopping at Kennywood Park Holiday Lights

There are several games open during the Holiday Lights festivities, and they, too, are holiday themed. Aside from games that are fun for all ages, there are also vendors set up in “booth” fashion around the park. One booth that we visited actually sold personalized ornaments, so our family purchased an one to add to our ornament collection of memories. Another booth had a Santa Shoppe with gift ideas for the children. Here, they could also join in the gift-giving by shopping for friends and family.

Manger Scene Kennywood Park Holiday Lights
Manger Scene Kennywood Park Holiday Lights

So What is There to Eat During the Kennywood Park Holiday Lights?

Well, there is one food place that I plan to visit EVERY time I go to Kennywood Park — Potato Patch Fries! So, are they are also open during the Holiday Lights –YES! Second score! Throughout the park, you will also find snack vendors that offer pretzels, churros, and hot cocoa, to name a few. We opted to get out of the cold and ate at Johnny Rockets restaurant located inside the park. You can’t go wrong with burgers, fries and shakes. 😉

All Aboard the Gingerbread Express Kennywood Park
All Aboard the Gingerbread Express Kennywood Park

Overall, we really enjoyed our visit to the Kennywood Park Holiday Lights display. The kids had fun riding the amusement rides that were open, and I enjoyed the light displays and the food LOL! If you find yourself in the Pittsburgh area and are looking a “something to do” on the weekend, I would recommend checking it out! While you are there, don’t forget to take a ride on the Gingerbread express. 🙂

Aboard the Gingerbread Express
Aboard the Gingerbread Express

Looking for a snack that is fun and easy to make for the whole family, check out my “Easy to Make Caramel Apples Slices” post for some yummy inspiration!

PIN ME: Kennywood Park Holiday Lights
PIN ME: Kennywood Park Holiday Lights