Leprechaun Bark

Leprechaun BarkHolidays are a great excuse to eat chocolate…not that anyone really needs an excuse to eat chocolate.  I saw this lucky leprechaun bark and knew I had to make some for St Paddy’s Day.  I actually don’t celebrate St Patrick’s Day at all, but I thought it would be cute, not to mention super tasty!Leprechaun Bark

I love mint and chocolate together, so I used Andes baking chips (+ a little dark chocolate) for the bottom layer.  I added a handful of white candy melts to just less than a full bag of green candy melts to lighten up the color for the top layer of my leprechaun bark.  You can use a microwave, double boiler, or whatever method you choose to melt the chocolate and candy melts.  I microwaved them at 60% power for about 1 1/2 minutes, stirred well, and continued microwaving/stirring at 15-25 second intervals until they were completely melted.  You could add mint flavoring to the candy melts if you’d like, but I thought there was a perfect amount of mint flavor from the Andes chips.
Leprechaun Bark

Leprechaun Bark

Ingredients

  • 1 10 oz bag Andes baking chips
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp vegeatble oil
  • 2 cups green candy melts
  • 1/2 cup white candy melts
  • green m&ms, sprinkles, or anything you'd like to decorate with

Instructions

  1. Melt the Andes chips and chocolate chips together with 1 tsp vegetable oil using the method of your choice. Let it cool for a few minutes, until it is just about room temperature.
  2. Spread over layer of wax paper as thick or thin as you'd like and let sit until completely hardened. You may place it in the refrigerator to speed up this process.
  3. Melt the green and white candy melts according to package directions. Again, let it cool for a couple minutes before spreading.
  4. Spread over the hardened chocolate. Use a spatula to spread/smooth it out.
  5. Sprinkle m&ms and sprinkles over the top and let it harden.
  6. Break or cut into bite-sized pieces.

Notes

If the bottom layer is cool (ie has been refrigerated), the top layer will set fast when you add it, so work quickly to get all your decorations on (or let it come to room temperature before spreading).

http://paintchipsandfrosting.com/2013/03/18/leprechaun-bark/

Leprechaun Bark

Pistachio Loaf

Pistachio LoafIt all started with a visit to my parents house.  I noticed a green cake on the counter… intriguing.  I had to try it; it was SO good that I continued to try it until I had eaten three pieces in the five minutes I had been there.  My mom offered to write down the recipe for me, but I kindly declined.  I can’t make something like this and keep it at home…I have NO self control.  Well, I  regretted that decision almost immediately and that delicious, pale green, cake-like loaf has been haunting my taste buds ever since!Pistachio Loaf
St Patrick’s Day is the perfect excuse to make this wonderfully addicting treat and just as you may have guessed I would, I gave in and had my mom copy down the recipe for me last week.

Pistachio Loaf

The recipe is from a local newspaper (my mom couldn’t remember which), so I’m not sure where it came from originally.  It was actually titled pistachio bread, but it is very cake-like so I prefer to call it pistachio loaf.  You could (and maybe should) use chopped pistachios, but I used chopped walnuts because that’s what I had in my pantry.  I dusted these loaves with powdered sugar, but a simple vanilla glaze would be magnificent as well.Pistachio Loaf

I can’t tell you how much I love this, but I can try.  This recipe gets bonus points because my picky eater husband liked it too!  The delicate, moist center of this pistachio loaf is complimented perfectly by a sweet and slightly crisp crust.  It is soft and springy, sweet and has the perfect pistachio flavor.  I added two drops of green food coloring to enhance the green color and make it a bit more festive, but it is still a pale green without it.  It is SO delicious!

Pistachio Loaf

Pistachio Loaf

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 2 8x4 loaves, 1 9x5 loaf

Ingredients

  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 1 3.4 oz. box pistachio pudding
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease/butter and flour two 8x4 loaf pans or one 9x5 loaf pan.
  2. Mix all ingredients until well-blended.
  3. Pour into pans.
  4. Bake at 350 for 45-50 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean.
  5. Let cool in pan for 15 minutes, then remove from pan and allow to cool completely.
http://paintchipsandfrosting.com/2013/03/17/pistachio-loaf/

Pistachio Loaf