RSS Feed

Tag Archives: dessert

Remember This?: Old McDonald’s Apple Pies

Posted on

I dreamed last night that I went to Taco Bell for a caramel apple empanada. When I got there, they were revising their menu and most of it was covered over in pieces of cardboard. My delicious, sweet, fried empanada was no longer there.

It made me sad. The dream was very realistic because usually my favorite foods get discontinued. Does anyone else remember Kraft having frozen meals? I was particularly fond of the ravioli filled with mozzarella. There is a great family (meaning just my mom and I) story about me turning around quickly in the kitchen and all the ravioli and tomato sauce slopping off the plate with the centrifugal force my body created. Man, what I wouldn’t give for that plateful of cheesy, tomatoey gooey goodness one last time.

At McDonald’s? Chicken nuggets have stood the test of time, with varying degrees of quality through the decades. A Big Mac, supposedly their signature sandwich? I could care less. I only ate them when I had a year’s worth for free. Even then, I had to order it without the special sauce. But their apple pies? Oh, how I loved those. And no, not the BAKED doughy version they have now, filled with apples slices that are too large and topped with a pile of cinnamon. I love cinnamon, I truly do, but I don’t want it all piled in one spot on top.

Oh God, I would give my pinky toe nail for one of those right about now.

Oh God, I would give my pinky toe nail for one of those right about now.

No, I loved the McDonald’s apple pies of my youth. I believe they went by the wayside in the early 1990s. They were fried, because the outer shell was all golden and crispy. The texture was all these tiny little air bubble bumps along the outside. When you bit into it, it crunched with deep-fried deliciousness. Usually you also burned your lip on the steam, if not on some of the extra-sweetened apple goo that would get stuck to your lip that would continue to scald until you could manage to lick it off and burn your tongue in the process.

Such uniform, processed steaming-hot perfection!

Such uniform, processed steaming-hot perfection!

Inside were diced apples, all uniformly sized in their heavily processed form. It was the definition of DESSERT, as much as you can have without chocolate anyway. It wasn’t a half-assed attempt to make your dessert healthy, with the baked and the less sugar nonsense.

The caramel apple empanada dream upset me so because that is the closest thing I have found that I can still get that reminds me of the old McDonald’s apple pies.

I am apparently not the only one still pining for this fruity delight. There are recipes all over the Internet trying to duplicate the taste and consistency of the original: you can find one here. I am afriad of hot grease, so my attempting it seems highly unlikely. There are still infrequent fried apple pie sightings across the United States, but they seem to be harder to find than a needle in a haystack.

Holy crap! Look at what they serve in Japan. I would totally try that.

Holy crap! Look at what they serve in Japan. I would totally try that.

Now go on about your day. Just try not to think about the crunchy, gooey deliciousness that you can no longer have. Because you can’t. It’s gone. It has gone by the wayside, just like MicroMagic cheeseburgers and old Wendy’s French fries.

Now you can’t stop thinking about them, can you? Your mouth is watering. It would be a great trifecta of garbage food filling up your stomach. Excuse me, I need to take off now and, um, drive thru, I mean drive to the store. Yes, yes….that’s what I meant…

Follow the romantic entanglements of The Riley Sisters in my books:
Be Careful What You Wish ForAVAILABLE NOW!
When You Least Expect It THE CONTINUING ROMANCE!
The Wind Could Blow a BugWHERE IT ALL BEGAN!

Remember This?: Pre-Made S’mores

S’mores.

Good idea, bad execution.

Marshmallow – Good.

Chocolate – VERY Good.

Graham Cracker – Eh.

S'more

S’more

The traditional location to eat S’mores is camping.

Are you f’ing kidding me?

Why would you want to try to devour something ooey-gooey-chocolately delicious when you have a residue of dirt and mosquito repellent on your hands? And after you eat the S’more, you have a thick, sticky residue of marshmallow on your hands. Hand sanitizer or a cup of water isn’t going to rinse that sh*t off. I feel like camping foods should be easily clean-up-able. Hmmm. Maybe this is why my mother has never been a camper. (She likes things clean.  To the point of rubbing my son’s butt off after a poopy diaper change. OY.)

I don’t even think I had ever consumed a S’more until Nabisco came out with pre-made, microwavable S’mores in the 1990’s, called Suddenly S’mores. If you are trying to jog your memory, they came in a red package.

They were great!

No campfire required! (Just a microwave.)

No assembly required!

You can make them anytime!

They were the perfect proportion of chocolate to marshmallow to sweetened cookie graham cracker. Except for the occasional marshmallow burn on my finger, they were great! Except they came in inner packs of 2, and you had to make 4 at a time to really get all the yummy deliciousness that you craved.

A great after-school snack.

Bedtime snack.

Saturday morning breakfast.

Lunch.

Dessert.

Lunch Dessert.

If they still made them and stocked them in a store near me, I would still be buying them today.

But, alas, the closest thing I can find nowadays is the S’mores bar from Cabelas. It has a chocolate covered marshmallow sandwiched between the graham cracker. You have to be careful when you microwave it because if you leave it in too long the marshmallow will get huge and the top will slide off the bottom. They are kind of expensive. And have to be purchased at a Cabela’s store.

Another alternative, if you have a gas stove, is to toast the marshmallows that way.

But I still miss the microwave variety 😦

Does anyone else remember these?

Watch the commercial I found on YouTube.

Old Family Recipe

Today I will share with you an old family recipe. It is very easy to make. It is a good way to use up leftovers. It can be a breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack, or dessert. It is delicious.

Have I peeked your interested?

It is frosting on oyster crackers!

What?

Oyster crackers. You know, the little round salty soup crackers. Nabisco Premium oyster crackers are my favorite brand. If you don’t have any oyster crackers, Saltines work too. Using Saltines just makes getting the ratio of frosting to cracker more tricky to get right.

What?

Oh, you meant that this concoction sounded gross? My husband thinks so too. But I try not to judge him too harshly for it. I will do the same for you.

Ta-Da!: I present to you Frosted Oyster Crackers

Ta-Da!: I present to you Frosted Oyster Crackers

My mom used to eat this when I was little to use up leftover frosting. Because, of course, you cannot throw out extra frosting. It is sugar and fat in spreadable form. A precious commodity!

My mom often used chocolate frosting for this dish. I think I prefer vanilla. This is one of my most favorite desserts. Sometimes, if I haven’t had it in a while, I will just buy a can of frosting especially to make it.

I tell you, there is nothing quite like the combination of sweet and salty, unbleached enriched flour and hydrogenated oils (that is for you, LazyHippieMama!). That perfect little dollop of frosting smeared onto the cracker.

Hey, I wonder if I could turn them into a party snack. If I used a pastry bag (a.k.a. Ziploc bag with the corner cut off) I could make an attractive frosting peak on every cracker. Maybe I could run a toothpick into them. I wonder if my in-laws would eat them? That would mean I would have to stop double dipping though. But frosting might make the cracker soggy. Then it would not have the desirable crispiness that is required.

I am not one who usually shares recipes on my blog, and now you know why 😉 I currently have a whole can of red frosting leftover from my son’s caboose birthday cake. My waist line is already expanding. I should just throw it out. Will I?

Well, the jury is still out.

I did have to make up some crackers for the photo for this post.

And Betty Crocker frosting does last in the fridge for 30 days. (Damn it, I thought I bought Duncan Hines. I like DH better.) 6 more days to go…

Caboose Cake

Last year I made my son, M, a rather complex Thomas the Tank Engine cake for his birthday. You can get more info and instruction for Thomas here: https://imnotstalkingyou.com/2012/11/27/beginners-luck-the-post-with-the-thomas-cake/

My finished Thomas The Tank Engine cake

My finished Thomas The Tank Engine cake

I did a month of preparation for it (planning, shopping, baking, freezing, studying Cake Boss episodes). My son still remembers the cake because pictures of it keep circulating on my digital picture frame.

I started asking him a couple of months ago what kind of cake he wanted this year. First he told me “a Creeper cake” (from Scooby-Doo).

The Creeper from Scooby-Doo

The Creeper from Scooby-Doo

I told him no. Beyond my skill level and too scary.

Then he fell in love with the story “The Little Red Caboose” by Marian Potter. Then all he wanted was a caboose cake. Last year was the beginning of the train, this year the end. A caboose is pretty much a rectangle. I could handle that.

My inspiration: The Little Red Caboose by Marian Potter

My inspiration: The Little Red Caboose by Marian Potter

I had two goals with this cake, which greatly affected the outcome:

1. Make it taste better than the Thomas cake.

Thomas was all about the looks. I used fondant and butter cream frosting to make him look awesome. I wasn’t crazy about the taste of either of them. This year I vowed to use regular old in-the-can Duncan Hines frosting, no matter what the impact on my finished creation would be.

Thomas was made with two boxes of cake mix. The caboose is only made from one box. I used yummy strawberry cake and layered it with chocolate frosting. I covered the outside with colored vanilla frosting.

2. Do not be stressed out.

Well, I was a little. I only had like 2 1/2 hours to assemble the cake on the morning of my son’s birthday. But that was only like one day’s worth of stress compared to last year’s weeks worth of so much anxiety I couldn’t sleep. When I made the Thomas cake, I wasn’t working. I had plenty of time to plan cakes and worry last year. Not so much this year.

So, when you judge the result of my efforts, take those two things into consideration.

I present to you, my caboose cake!

My Caboose Cake!

My Caboose Cake!

It could put a diabetic in a coma!

It is complete with smoke stack, buffers, and a brake wheel (the brake wheel is important in the story).

It…looks a little like a houseboat???

I was way too far into my hasty assembly and decorating before I realized that I had forgotten to make another lower level for the back.

But look at the fine details of the railing! The door! The windows!

I think I should at least get credit for trying. My asbestos friend said she would not even attempt such a thing. (Which is silly, because I have seen her make an adorable Stitch costume in one night. Creativity flows from one medium to another. Except music. I can’t make music to save my life.)

The ultimate test for me is if my son can tell what the cake is supposed to be. And he could!

Then he pointed out that there were only buffers on on end. And he wanted me to make the rest of the train cars :/

I pretty much used the knowledge I gained from Thomas to make this cake.

1. Draw picture.

Rough drawing  (Click on any picture to make it larger)

Rough drawing (Click on any picture to make it larger)

2. I used paper to create a template.

3. I baked and froze my cakes, wrapping them in wax paper and foil to prevent freezer burn. I used one box of cake mix and split it between 2 loaf pans. Note to Self: Level the cakes at this step next time.

Frozen cakes

Frozen cakes

4. I took them out of the freezer and cut them according to the templates.

Frozen cakes with templates

Frozen cakes with templates

5. I stacked them using frosting. (This is where I should have consulted my original drawing again. Whoops. You know what they say: Live and learn and eat a houseboat.) I slid two wooden dowels through the high part.

Stacked cakes with dowels

Stacked cakes with dowels

6. Frosted the outside.

Covered in red frosting

Covered in red frosting

7. Applied decorations. I used Hershey’s kisses for the wheels, fruit roll-ups for the windows, cinnamon discs for the lights, Rice Krispie treats for the back end, and a huge-ass Hershey bar for the roof. Most of the rest of the details are made out of licorice. Which you could not pay me to eat, but it proved to be a very versatile decorating tool. The railing was made with the help of paper sucker sticks and toothpicks (DO NOT EAT TOOTHPICKS!).

Constructing caboose details

Constructing caboose details

8. I used chocolate frosting for the ground, brown sugar for the gravel/dirt, and licorice for the rails and ties. I wanted to have green frosting for grass, but I forgot and dyed all my frosting red.

*Moral of the story: Take your time! Do not rush!

Cake showing all details and tracks

Cake showing all details and tracks

9. Apply dinosaur candles to instantly convert the caboose into one of my son’s other favorite entertainment franchises: Dinosaur Train!

Caboose with dinosaur candles inserted

Caboose with dinosaur candles inserted

10. Light candles.

CABOOSE-11

11. Make wish.

12. Blow out flame.

13. Cut cake, removing all non-edible objects.

14. EAT!

Destruction: The tastiest part of cake-baking

Destruction: The tastiest part of cake-baking

15. Re-light candles. Make more wishes.

Remember what my Thomas Cake post was titled?

“Beginner’s Luck”

Yep. This is what happens when beginner’s luck runs out.

The dashing birthday boy!

The dashing birthday boy!

Lunch Dessert

The other day my mother-in-law called me. I have to read the caller ID on my phone correctly, or else I think it is MY mother, and I answer my phone all aggravated. Our conversation went a little something like this:

MIL: Are you busy?
ME: No, just finishing up lunch.
MIL: Should I call you back later?
ME: Oh no, I’m just having lunch dessert.
MIL: You are having what?
ME: Lunch dessert.
MIL: What is that? (laughing)
ME: The sweet treat you eat after lunch.

Hey, if Taco Bell can create fourth meal, I can create lunch dessert. I can also get fat from eating lunch dessert. But I just can’t stop!

Am I having an unhealthy snack? No, it is just lunch dessert.

Can’t wait to eat those cookies til after dinner? Have them for lunch dessert.

My lunch was a piece of cake (literally!). Can I still have something else sweet for lunch dessert? Why certainly.

I had lunch dessert today, can I still have a dessert after dinner? Certainly!

Is there such a thing as breakfast dessert? Yes!

Unfortunately, all the sugar & calories of breakfast & breakfast dessert in one :(

Unfortunately, all the sugar & calories of breakfast & breakfast dessert in one foil packet 😦

Can you have breakfast dessert after eating Pop-Tarts for breakfast? Sorry, no. The sugar and calorie content in Pop-Tarts is just too high to allow that 😦

For more wacky unofficial dietary suggestions, visit my past posts*:

The Candy Bar Diet

Picky Eater

As Paula Deen was to butter, that may be how I am to sweets.

* Consult your doctor before doing anything a random blog post recommends.

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: