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Sipping at Starbucks: Unicorn Frappuccino

Rumors circulated around the interwebs for weeks…

A colorful drink that no one thought existed until the week of April 17th.  That’s when actual pictures of the mythical Unicorn Frappuccino drink surfaced (well, that’s when I saw actual pics.)

Starbucks then gave us a countdown til the release of the beast for consumption on April 19th! We wouldn’t know what it tasted like until you actually took a sip. Claims of color changing and flavor changing liquids are things for the science fair Gods but here we are as adults in 2017 getting hype for unicorns!

Now, of course, nothing in the coffee world that’s pink, blue or purple is acceptable but I didn’t want to be that person living with regret because I didn’t try this Unicorn Frappuccino. So, bright eyed and bushy-top knotted, I made my way to my favorite Starbucks to try it.

After chatting with my ever-so-peppy barista (seriously, Steve is the best) he handed me my very own sparkly unicorn!

 

 

Not an actual unicorn but this Unicorn Frappuccino will do! It is indeed color changing and flavor changing!

At first sip, it reminded me of those orange creamsicles that you could get off the ice cream truck back in the day (that is, if you’re old enough to remember.)  The actual color of the drink started off pink with a blue drizzle strip in the middle and as the drink melted or got stirred it would change into a purple color! Whip cream was topped off with sour sugar that change the flavor of the drink if mixed in. 

If you recall mixing your primary paints in kindergarten, you learned that mixing certain colors together gave you a whole new color!

The flavor wasn’t my favorite… Mostly because, I like a regular coffee frapp (clearly) and I don’t like the creamy fruit flavors of anything…or creamy slushes. It wasn’t the worst thing I’ve ever tasted ( I did read a few tweets on release day that people said it was disgusting and to each their own.)

As a limited time offering, it was worth it try the Unicorn Frappuccino from Starbucks but it probably wouldn’t be on my daily must-have list. Back to our regularly scheduled coffee.

Mint Juleps According to The Kentucky Derby

Counting down to the annual race today? Invite a few friends over and concoct the perfect Mint Julep with this recipe right from the horses’ mouth! Ok, so it’s not exactly from a horse but it is from the good folks over at the Kentucky Derby.

 

The Old Forester Mint Julep Recipe

kentuckyderbymintjulep
the Kentucky derby mint julep

Make a simple syrup by boiling sugar and water together for five minutes.

Cool and place in a covered container with six or eight sprigs of fresh mint, then refrigerate overnight.

Make one julep at a time by filling a julep cup with crushed ice, adding one tablespoon mint syrup and two ounces of Old Forester Kentucky Bourbon.

Stir rapidly with a spoon to frost the outside of the cup. Garnish with a sprig of fresh mint.

2 cups sugar
2 cups water
Sprigs of fresh mint
Crushed ice
Old Forester Kentucky Bourbon
Silver Julep Cups

 

You can read up on the history of the Mint Julep all over the web so recipes may vary! Since I’m not in Kentucky to pick up any Old Forester Bourbon, I’m sure substituting with any of my (or your) favorite whiskey will do. A trick I learned to make Mint Juleps: use a pestle mortar to grind the mint and extract the flavor (saves on having to let anything sit overnight.)

Since you’re going to be drinking so early today, try to pace yourself…remember there is a fight to watch much later. Horse racing plus the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao fight, what better way to spend a sports-filled Saturday than drink mixing with friends?!

 

Have fun!

 

(this is not my recipe nor did I create it. simply sharing 🙂

Celebrate National Coffee Day (Night) with Sobieski Espresso Vodka

What better way to celebrate National Coffee Day than with National Coffee Night?!

Yes, our favorite drink is taking us from day to night with a java twist!

Sure there’s your regular cup of Joe but it’s a holiday so let’s spike it up a notch!

1coffeecocktail

 The kind folks over at Sobieski  Vodka, sent over a sample of their espresso flavored vodka and a great cocktail recipe!

The recipe includes…

  • 2 oz. Sobieski Espresso Vodka
  • 1 oz. Kerrygold Irish Cream
  • 1 oz. Chocolate liqueur
  • Add all liquid ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a martini glass.

With me being under the weather, I couldn’t fully enjoy this cocktail like I wanted to. Meaning, I couldn’t down the martini glass in two seconds then smash a beer can on my forehead. BUT. What I  could do, twist open the Sobieski bottle and enjoy the aroma of sweet coffee.

Sweet.

Rich.

Espresso.

2coffeecocktail

Once the irresistible scent of espresso came over me, there was no way I could resist taking a sip (or three) don’t tell my doctor!

Now, with me being the coffee lover that I am, this delicious vodka espresso flavored vodka will get a new twist….caramel! Can’t wait to try that mix!

Super Bowl XLVII: Party Stock Up

 

 
 


Are you ready for some football? With the super bowl right around the corner, it’s time to get the party planning percolating! Now that we finally know who’ll be playing to win the Tiffany Trophy aka The Vince Lombardi Trophy bka The Superbowl, we’re going to switch gears from high fashion to hot athletes. Well, maybe on the next post!

On Sunday, February 3rd, the NFL will have a new champion between the San Francisco 49’ers and the Baltimore Ravens. Jokingly referred to as “The Harbowl” seeing as though the two head coaches of each team are actually BROTHERS! Yes, you read that right, Jim Harbaugh, the head coach for the Niners and John Harbaugh, the head coach for the Ravens are real life brothers. The siblings will coach AGAINST each other for this years championship!





Are you planning a Super Bowl party, going to one or will your hubby/boyfriend/partner/person who sometimes sleeps next to you and snores through the night, throwing or invited to a bowl bash?  I’ve got a few things in store for you! Whether you’re going to a touchdown party or becoming the host for one, check out a few things you’re going to need.



For the party planner:
 
Personalized pitcher and glasses
 

 
 
Walmart


Table Ware & Decor

 


Party City




For the party goer:
 

 

Get your official super bowl gear 
 

 
 
 
 
 
Ladies, will never be out done!
 
 
 
 
 





For the party chef:
 

There’s nothing like some good tasting, finger licking, taste bud appeasing foods to nibble on while watching the big game. From appetizers to dessert, I’ve got you covered with some fun-to-try treats. Now, I have to warn you, these aren’t for anyone who may be dieting. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

 


Buffalo Chicken Cheese Balls

Aaron  McCargo Jr. for Food Network

Ingredients
1 store-bought rotisserie chicken
1/4 cup hot sauce (recommended: Frank’s Red Hot)
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 3/4 cups sharp Cheddar
1/4 cup freshly sliced scallions
1 cups all-purpose flour
3 eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups panko bread crumbs
Vegetable oil, for frying
Blue Cheese Dip:
1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
1/2 cup packed blue cheese, broken up
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
Directions
Have oil heated to 350 degrees F.

Pick the meat from the chicken and discard the skin. Place the chicken in a large bowl and add the hot sauce, pepper, cheese, and scallions, and toss to combine. Roll the chicken into 2-ounce balls, about the size of a golf ball.

Place the flour, eggs, and bread crumbs in 3 separate bowls. Roll each ball in the flour, then the egg and then the bread crumbs. Set aside.

When the oil is hot fry the chicken balls in batches. Cook for about 2 minutes per batch. Remove the chicken to paper towel lined plate to drain the excess oil.

To make the sauce, combine all ingredients in a large bowl and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Serve the chicken alongside the dipping sauce.




Pigskins in a Blanket

 
Food Network Kitchens
Ingredients
One 13-ounce package kielbasa
All-purpose flour, for rolling
One 17.3-ounce package frozen puff pastry, thawed 
(I would use Pilsbury Crescent Rolls…much easier)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/3 cup mustard, such as Dijon, whole grain, spicy brown or yellow, for dipping
 
 
 


Directions
Split the kielbasa in half lengthwise and then cut each half into six 3/4-inch pieces, slicing on an angle. Cook the pieces in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until the skin is crisped and some of the fat has been released, about 5 minutes. Transfer the kielbasa to a paper towel-lined plate to cool.
 
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
 
On a lightly floured surface, roll one piece of puff pastry out to form an 8- by 11-inch rectangle. Using a 3 1/2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out 6 circles from the pastry; cut the circles out as close together as possible and reserve the scraps. Repeat with the second sheet of puff pastry.
 
Wrap a circle of puff pastry around each of a kielbasa, pinching the seams together to seal all the way around so no kielbasa is exposed and gently pulling on the ends to make a tapered football shape. Place on an ungreased baking sheet, seam-side down, and repeat with the remaining pastry and sausage.
 
Brush the rolled sausages with the beaten egg. Use bits of the pastry scraps to make laces on each “football” by placing 1 strip lengthwise on top of each and laying 3 smaller strip crosswise over it. Press down gently to adhere and brush the laces with a bit more egg.
 
Bake until the pastry is browned and crisped, 25 to 30 minutes. Serve the pigskins with mustard for dipping.
 
 
 
 

 
Food Network Kitchens

Ingredients

  • Canola oil
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 3/4 teaspoon plus 1 pinch kosher salt
  • Twelve 6-inch corn tortillas, each cut into 6 wedges
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded, if desired, and
  • finely chopped
  • 1 plum tomato, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup Mexican lager-style beer (such as Corona)
  • 12 ounces muenster or Monterey Jack, grated (about 3 1/2 cups)
  • 4 ounces sharp white Cheddar, grated (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • Directions
  • Pour oil to a depth of 2 inches into a medium saucepan. Heat over medium-high heat until a deep-frying thermometer inserted in the oil reaches 350 degrees F. In a small bowl, mix the lime zest and 3/4 teaspoon salt together. Working in batches, fry the tortilla wedges until golden and crisp, about 1 minute, and transfer them to a paper towel-lined baking sheet with a slotted spoon. Sprinkle the chips with the lime salt while they are still hot. Set aside.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon canola oil in a 10-inch cast-iron or ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions, jalapeno and a pinch of salt and cook until the onions just start to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato and cook until softened, about 1 minute. Add the beer and cook until all the liquid has evaporated, about 7 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat. Toss the muenster and Cheddar together and add them to the skillet. Stir once or twice to combine.
  • When ready to serve, preheat the broiler. Place the skillet under the broiler until the cheese is bubbling and lightly browned on top, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve hot with the chips.
  • Cook’s Note: Although this cheesy dip should be eaten fresh from the oven, you can have everything ready to go before your guests arrive. You can fry, season and cool the chips and store them for 2 to 3 hours in an airtight container. Cook the vegetables and reduce the beer, then remove the skillet from the heat. Grate your cheeses and combine them. When you’re ready to serve, stir the cheese into the vegetables, broil and enjoy.




Slutty Cheesecake Bars

 
Bakers Royale

Makes one 8×8 pan | Preparation: Heat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line pan with a foil sling.

INGREDIENTS:

8oz. cookie dough (ready-made or homemade)
16 Oreos
12 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
Topping

3 oz.Whoppers, chopped
5 Oreos, chopped



INSTRUCTIONS:

Roll out or using your fingers, press cookie dough to an 1/8 inch thickness and bake until crisp. Place whole Oreos on top of baked cookie crust.
To make cheesecake filling: Place cream cheese, sugar, egg and vanilla in a bowl and beat until blended. Pour mixture over Oreos.
Sprinkle chopped Oreos and Whoppers on top. Bake at 350 degrees for about 35-40 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely before cutting.
*This can be prepared 3 days in advance and kept in the refrigerator tightly covered. Remove from refrigerator 20-30 minutes prior to serving. (Cut while cold for bars with nice clean edges).

 

 

Deep Fried Candy Bars

 
Huffington Post

Ingredients
4 pop sticks
3 cups vegetable oil
4 candy bars, such as Mars Bars, Snickers, and Milky Ways
Powdered sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
1/2 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
powdered sugar




Directions

Preheat oil in a large, heavy pot over medium-high heat. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Pierce each candy bar with a pop stick, place on the prepared baking sheet, and refrigerate 30 minutes.
Whisk all batter ingredients until little to no lumps remain. One at a time, dip chilled candy bars in batter and coat well.
Once oil reaches 390°F, carefully place candy bars in oil one at a time and fry about 3 to 4 minutes. Drain on a paper towel, sprinkle with powdered sugar if desired, and serve hot.

 



 

Chocolate Rice Krispie Treat Footballs

 
Kellogs

3 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 package (10 oz., about 40) regular marshmallows
OR
4 cups miniature marshmallows
1/2 cup peanut butter
6 cups Kellogg’s® Cocoa Krispies® cereal
Canned frosting or decorating gel
Why use Kellogg’s® Rice Krispies®?



1. In large saucepan melt butter over low heat. Add marshmallows and stir until completely melted. Remove from heat. Stir in peanut butter until melted. 

2. Add KELLOGG’S RICE KRISPIES cereal. Stir until well coated.

3. Cool slightly. Using buttered hands shape mixture into sixteen 3-inch footballs. Decorate with frosting. Best if served the same day.

MICROWAVE DIRECTIONS:

In microwave-safe bowl heat butter and marshmallows on HIGH for 3 minutes, stirring after 2 minutes. Stir until smooth. Add peanut butter, stirring until melted. Follow steps 2 and 3 above. Microwave cooking times may vary.

Note

For best results, use fresh marshmallows.

1 jar (7 oz.) marshmallow creme can be substituted for marshmallows.

Diet, reduced calorie or tub margarine is not recommended.

Store no more than two days at room temperature in airtight container. To freeze, place in single layer on wax paper in airtight container. Freeze for up to 6 weeks. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.





Let’s get ready to party!

 

 

 

Hope that helps! Have fun, be safe and always… Happy Shopping!
 

 



A Keurig Coffee Machine is What I Need

I need a new coffee maker.  Seriously.  Black & Decker just isn’t cutting it for me anymore.

Know what Rena wants?  A Keurig!

It quite possibly may be time for me to use my words and bat some eyelashes!  Well, that is, if I did that sort of girly maneuver, which I don’t!  I would never!

What if, for all intensive purposes, there is someone out there (I won’t mention any names) that this technique could persuade them to purchase a Keurig for me, them or perhaps us?  Could this person be reading this post?  Is it making him or her think about the deliciousness of dark roast coffee or a mug of hot cocoa filled with marshmallows? Just curious.  Maybe you want some iced tea…who knows?!  It has lots of benefits for many people lol all I want to do is be a good friend…you know me!

This is starting to sound (read) like an advertisement…..totally didn’t intend for that to happen!  Someone should write the Keurig company and tell them I’m selling the shhhh out of their coffee machine thingy!  They should just send me one….let me test it or umm I don’t know,  have it forever!

Tis not a lot to wish for.