Green Pizzas for St. Paddy’s Day, Plus 6 More Spring Pies

by in Entertaining, Holidays, March 16th, 2015

Pizza is the perfect food for entertaining — a crowd-pleaser with unlimited options for sauce, cheese and toppings. We started with one basic dough recipe and explored some creative combinations of ingredients that celebrate spring. If you’re willing to break with corned-beef-and-cabbage tradition, the naturally green pizzas are perfect for St. Patrick’s Day gatherings. Read more

11 Ideas for a Red Hot Valentine’s Day

by in Holidays, How-to, February 11th, 2015

In the early 1930s, the Ferrara Candy Company created the famous Red Hots cinnamon candies using the cold panned candy method. The inventors probably never imagined that the candies, which have become a Valentine’s Day staple, could be used in so many ways. All of these ideas utilize one 6-ounce theater box of the candies. Browse the full gallery for all 11 spiced-up homemade Valentine’s Day treats.

Red Hot Strawberries
Red Hots melt perfectly into a smooth syrup that can be incorporated into a variety of recipes, including these candy-coated strawberries (pictured above). Boil 1 box of Red Hots with 1 cup of water and 1/2 cup of sugar to 300 degrees F (hard crack stage). Use a candy thermometer to monitor. Carefully dip skewered strawberries into the candy. Let cool completely.

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Beyond the Bag: New Ways to Eat Your Baby Carrots

by in Family, How-to, January 27th, 2015

It’s a common predicament: You buy a bag of baby carrots, eat a few, and then let the rest of them sit at the bottom of the vegetable bin until they become either a slimy mess or dried-out little nubs. Here are easy ways to use up the rest of that bag, get more veggies in your family’s diet and feel good about yourself! Check out the full gallery for all 14 delicious ideas.

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5 Edible Holiday Centerpiece Ideas That Will Wow Your Guests

by in Holidays, How-to, December 20th, 2014

Start the music! Light the lights! Get the party going with an edible centerpiece tonight! These fun, creative projects are sure to be the star of any holiday party, and they’re easy enough for kids to help with. Use them as a single element, or in a group on a buffet or dinner table. Check out the full gallery for step-by-step instructions for each centerpiece idea.

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Fun Thanksgiving Projects for Kids

by in Family, How-to, November 21st, 2014

Chores like peeling potatoes can make kids start to feel like they are on KP duty, and though that may be fun for a while, it can quickly turn to drudgery. This Thanksgiving, let everyone share chores so they go by faster, then set your kids up with one of these fun projects. Even little kids can roll cheese balls and cut out shapes with cookie cutters, and older kids can do more-complicated projects like creating a turkey-shaped veggie platter. These projects are win/win/win! They teach kids how to use creative thinking in the kitchen, they take some of the work off parents’ hands, and they keep kids occupied. Plus, the results look and taste good enough to meet the standards of your most-persnickety guests.

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Make These Treats with Leftover Halloween Candy

by in How-to, October 29th, 2014

Kids consider their stash of hard-earned Halloween candy sacred, so the concept of leftover candy is a fantasy in a lot of households. Before making any of these spooky desserts, you might need to hit the post-trick-or-treat sale aisles. Be prepared to receive a hero’s welcome when you bestow these bonus Halloween candy-based treats upon your loved ones this weekend.

Store-bought cake, frosting and brownies can be used as timesavers, or you can make your own. Do frost the cake and brownies yourself, because the frosting needs to be wet for the toppings to adhere properly. Incorporate Halloween-themed sprinkles into each recipe to up the fun factor even higher.

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10-Minute Cake Decorating with Supermarket Staples

by in How-to, October 2nd, 2014

Decorating a cake can be super-easy and stress-free, so celebrate life’s special occasions, no matter how small, with a festive decorated cake. No need for piping bags and sugar flowers: All of these ideas can be done in minutes using supermarket staples, and they’re as much fun to make as they are to eat. Use them as a jumping-off point to pique your imagination and to discover easy cake decorating ideas from your own supermarket aisles. Read more

How to Brighten Up Your Summer Party Punch

by in How-to, View All Posts, August 14th, 2014

Here’s a fun (and probably healthier) way to use mini doughnut molds. To get through these dog days of August, make pretty individual ice rings to cool down and brighten up glasses of punch at summer parties. Read more

How to Decorate Cookies for Spring

by in How-to, May 20th, 2014

If April showers bring May flowers, what do Mayflowers bring?

Yes, Mayflowers do bring pilgrims, as this grade school riddle so memorably illustrates, but May flowers bring joy — the kind of joy that inspired me to break out my brushes so that I could paint and capture what I saw on … cookies!

Not only is it easy and fun to celebrate spring with these hand-painted watercolor flower cookies, but you can do your pretty decorating without the use of artificial dyes and additives. Herbs, fruit juice and plant dyes all can be used as food coloring, and companies like India Tree even make premade versions available for purchase. What other natural food colorings can you come up with?

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How to Decorate Easter Eggs with Sprinkles

by in Holidays, How-to, April 17th, 2014

Sprinkles turn regular old eggs into amazing, dye-free, edible works of art, with minimal effort and maximum fun. These hard-boiled eggs bejeweled with pastel-colored nonpareils make an extra-special addition to any Easter egg hunt or Easter basket. Here’s how to make them. Read more