Friday, October 31, 2008

Halloween Madness!


Diana and I carved some pumpkins a week ago for Halloween! I hope our next carving is more successful! Mine is a "cat" and hers was a spider web. I hope you guys can tell.

Here are some cute ideas to add something extra when people come for dinner!

I bought some little black spider rings ($1 for a huge bag) and some orange napkins. I folded the napkins (fan-style) and slipped a ring over it to hold them together. The rings are very small so I cut the spider ring so that it became a clasp to hold the napkin. Make your incision directly on the opposite side of the spider so the slit is right in the middle.

With the remainder spiders, I cut off the ring all together (leaving the spider) and put them in ice cube trays with water to give my sisters a "spooky" surprise in their drinks.

Homemade Caramel Popcorn

3 bags butterless popcorn, pop in microwave according to directions
2 sticks of butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup corn syrup
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of ground cinnamon or nutmeg

1) Preheat oven to 250 oF. Put popped corn in a large mixing bowl or two mixing bowls
2) Melt butter in a medium saucepan
3) Stir in brown sugar, cornsyrup and salt until it boils. Stir the entire time to prevent burning
4) When it's boiling, leave alone to boil for 3 minutes
5) Remove from heat and stir in baking soda, and spices
6) Pour slowly over popped popcorn a little at a time until the caramel is well encoporated into the popcorn
7) Place parchment paper over two baking sheets. Spread popcorn mixture evenly over the two sheets
8) Bake for 1 hr, stirring (gently) with a spatula every 15 minutes

Orange Chicken

4 boneless chicken breasts, cubed 1-2" pieces
1 tsp salt
1 egg
3/4 T black pepper
1/2 cup corn starch
1/4 cup flour
4 cloves garlic
2 tsp minced ginger
1/4 cup onions, chopped
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
2 T rice wine

Orange Sauce
3 tsp light soy sauce
1 tsp water
1/4 tsp chilli powder
5 tsp rice wine vinegar
5 tsp granulated sugar
2 tsp corn starch
1 orange

1) Mix egg, salt and pepper. Mix into chicken pieces evenly.
2) Sift flour and corn starch into a bowl and pour onto chicken pieces until evenly distributed
3) Heat up oil on high in a wok until 300oF. Fry chicken pieces 5-8 pieces at a time for 3 minutes.
4) Leave chicken on paper towels to dry
5) When all pieces are fried, empty out oil safely and heat wok for 15 seconds on high
6) Pour in one tablespoon of vegetable oil. Add in garlic, ginger, red pepper flakes and onions
7) Stir-fry for 1-2 minutes before adding the orange sauce mixture
8) Allow sauce to boil before readding chicken pieces again
9) Juice the orange and stir in 2 tsp of cornstarch with orange juice (Add orange zest for more orangey flavor). Add orange juice into sauce and allow to thicken

Teriyaki Steak w/ Grilled Pineapple

1 lb sirloin steak
1/2 cup teriyaki marinade
1/8 cup soy sauce
1/8 cup rice wine
2 tsp honey

8 slices of pineapple

1) Marinade steak in teriyaki, soy sauce, rice wine and honey mixture for 3-4 hours. (Don't overmarinade or the steak turns tough)
2) Heat up the grill on medium high heat
3) Grill up the steak until desired done-ness
4) Grill the pineapple on the hot grill and lay the slices ontop of the steak

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