Special Banana Nut Bread

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 large Nellie’s Free Range Eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 4 medium)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups chopped pecans, divided
ORANGE GLAZE:
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 3 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
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Peanut Butter Fudge Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 4 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Pulled Chicken Sandwiches (Crock Pot)

Ingredients

  • 1 medium onions or 1⁄2 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
SAUCE
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
  • 1 pinch salt

Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups 53% cacao dark chocolate morsels
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 cup instant nonfat dry milk
  • 2/3 cup dark unsweetened cocoa

Directions

  1. Stir together dark chocolate morsels, sugar, instant nonfat dry milk, and cocoa; spoon into 1 (2-qt.) jar. Store at room temperature up to 1 month.
  2. TO MAKE HOMEMADE HOT COCOA: Heat 1 cup milk to 180°; stir in 1/4 cup Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix. Makes 1 serving. Total 5 min.
  3. PACKAGE THE COCOA MIX IN: Weck 9-oz. Juice Jar

Slow Cooker Carnitas

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon crumbled dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 (4 pound) boneless pork shoulder roast
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups chicken broth

Directions

  1. Mix together salt, garlic powder, cumin, oregano, coriander, and cinnamon in a bowl. Coat pork with the spice mixture. Place the bay leaves in the bottom of a slow cooker and place the pork on top. Pour the chicken broth around the sides of the pork, being careful not to rinse off the spice mixture.
  2. Cover and cook on Low until the pork shreds easily with a fork, about 10 hours. Turn the meat after it has cooked for 5 hours. When the pork is tender, remove from slow cooker, and shred with two forks. Use cooking liquid as needed to moisten the meat.

Spiced Apple Snaps Fizz

Ingredients

  • 50ml Swedish aquavit (I used O.P. Anderson), or use gin
  • Squeeze of lemon juice
  • 4 tbsp cloudy apple juice
  • 2 pinches of ground cinnamon
  • Handful ice cubes
  • 200ml bottle sparkling wine
  • ½ small apple, cored and thinly sliced

Directions

  1. Pour the aquavit or gin into a cocktail shaker or large jam jar. Add a good squeeze of lemon juice, the apple juice, a generous pinch of cinnamon and a handful of ice cubes, pop on the lid and shake well.
  2. Strain into 2 fluted glasses and top up with sparkling wine. Sprinkle the apple slices with the remaining cinnamon and thread onto 2 cocktail sticks. Balance a cocktail stick across the rim of each glass and serve straight away.

MCDonald’s Celebrates Halloween with Haunted Restaurant & Giveaways

When you’re in the mood for a good scare, generally you don’t head for the comforting predictability of your local fast food joint.

But this year, McDonald’s is putting on quite the spooky spectacle by turning its Chicago headquarters into a haunted restaurant, complete with an LED lightshow and freebies.

The burger chain’s Halloween celebration began this weekend, when it unveiled its outdoor installation. According to a release, it includes a 1,630-square-foot LED screen with 10,000 individual lights, as well as hundreds of jack-o-lanterns, ghosts and skeletons. Spooky music complements a menu item cemetery, where the McPizza, the McD.L.T. and Onion Nuggets have been laid to rest.

For those who choose to dine at Mickey D’s across the country, a brand-new instant-win game (called “Trick. Treat. Win!”) is featured on food packaging. Customers can win food, vacations and even a new car.

If you want to catch the lightshow, it will be run two times every hour from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. local time until October 31st.