Halloween Fun!

So Halloween was about a week ago or so. During Halloween weekend it was full with crazy parties, ridiculous costumes and just huge amounts of fun in general. On the weekend,  after all the crazy partying had subsided and in continuing with the spirit of Halloween my girlfriend and I went over to a friends house which turned into a giant mix of Candy Apple making, Jack-O-Lantern carving and drinking. It was a blast.

The day started off with Kirsten and Callie creating the caramel sauce for the apples as well as melting the chocolate for the chocolate drizzle, while Jon and myself were relaxing on the couch with some beers trying to find actual Halloween music on the internet(which is impossible to find FYI).

The caramel was a bit runny, but with 4 engineers in the house the issue was not a problem. We added a few more blocks of caramel to the mixture and soon we were ready to go.

We had a random assortment of apple coating ingredients. Coconut, peanuts, Reese’s Pieces bites, as well as white and dark chocolate . What could be better! So we got to work…

 

This was by far the funnest part. People grabbing spoons left right and center, throwing apples into every bowl imaginable. It was a messy, messy process and sadly it was over far too fast. But here was out result. I think they look awesome! The caramel was still a bit runny but a short 5minute visit to the freezer solved that.

We had to eat one right away and as Jon was cutting it he so brilliantly put it, “They trick you into thinking this sorta stuff is good for you, because its got apples in it, but its actually diabetes on a stick.”

Either way it was so delicious. Although you couldn’t have more then 2-3 pieces of apple before you needed to take a break from all that sugary goodness.

We had a lot of left over toppings. So while everyone was recovering and still trying to find appropriate Halloween music I decided to create…

Using the extra caramel and chocolate sauce I was attempting to make some type of chocolate/caramel bar with extra white chocolate on top. Once it was made it was put in the freezer for about 25minutes to harden up.

And the results were fantastic. It came out of the freezer and looked great but once cut and you could see all the layers and it looked even better.

They were sooooo delicious but after a few bites we definitely went into a sugar comma. Completely worth it thou.

Since we were full of sugar and it was early in the night we decided to start carving some pumpkins. There were 6 of us at this point so we divided up into 3 teams. Each of us had our own design. So we set up shop and got to work!

Things were going well. Mid carve Callie started to get a bit hungry so she decided to take all the pumpkin seeds and roast them in the oven with a variety of spices. However, she clearly couldn’t wait.

Pumpkin guts…delicious?

However, when all was said and done we have 3 great Jack-O-Lanterns.🙂

Ron Swanson, A Jack-O-Lantern and Pac-Man We all did a good job but Ron Swanson’s pumpkin clearly was the best. Look at that mustache, it’s like an automatic win.

With everything that happened this weekend, this has got to be one of the funnest Halloweens in a long time. I can’t wait for next years.

Posted in Randoms, snacks, Stories | Leave a comment

Deep Fried Bacon Wrapped Pickles

So as some of you may or may not know about 2 weeks ago I posted this blog about making pickles from scratch. I did not know if it could be done, but i gave it a try and it turned out to be a complete success. After that I thought of only one thing…

How can I add bacon to this?

The solution was so simple… Just wrap them in bacon!

I made two different kinds of deep fried pickles. Ones with a breading mixture on them and the others just with bacon. Both were super delicious, however the bacon got much crispier on the non breaded pickles🙂. So those were definitely my favorite. There are few things are better then crispy bacon.

Ingredients

Bacon Pickles

Breading

  • Bread Crumbs
  • Eggs
  • Paprika, salt, pepper, garlic
  • extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

1. Take your pickles and slice them into long chunks (2.5” by 3/4” were what mine were in)2. Wrap each pickle in bacon, 1 slice per pickle. This should allow the bacon to double wrap some areas.

3. If you like crispy bacon I would leave it there and skip to the deep frying part, if you want the bacon flavor with a delicious breading on the outside then it is time to set up the breading station.

On the left we have bacon wrapped pickles. In the middle eggs, which will be the egg wash, and on the left grandma’s home made breadcrumbs with a pepper, paprika, garlic and a bit of salt in it. You do not need a lot of salt the pickles and bacon are salty enough as is.

4.  Dip the bacon wrapped pickles in the breading first. There should be enough moisture on the bacon and pickles to get some breading to stick.

5. Transfer the pickles to the egg wash bowl and thoroughly coat them. Once coated move the pickles back to the breadcrumb bowl and coat them too until fully covered. This will give a nice crispy layer that wont fall apart during frying.

6. Grab a frying pan and add a cup or 2 of olive oil to it. Turn the over onto medium heat and wait until oil gets hot. Note: If you have a deep fryer you can use that too. I do not have one handy so I did a shallow fry in a pan.

7. Once oil is hot enough, place 3-4 in at a time. Cook approximately 3-5minutes per side until the bacon is crispy or the breading is dark brown.

8. Remove from pan and place on paper towels to soak up any of the excess oil.

9. Serve and enjoy!

Now I have a question for you fine folks!!

Is there anything you’d like to see on this blog? I have been doing this for a few months now. I am trying to improve my blogging as well as my photography. I’m not sure if there’s anything specific you guys would like to see, or are interested in or just have some constructive criticism on how to improve. If you have any suggestions or questions for me, feel free to comment or send me an email. Thanks

And I hope you all have a great weekend.

 

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MovemBEER is Here!

Hello Everyone!

Movember Is Here!

Now, as I have mentioned a few times before I work for MolsonCoors. For this November and in support of mens health our Richards brand is supporting Movember with badass mustache beer!

Now not only do you get delicious beer, but also cool mustaches on the side. I think this is  a great way to raise awareness for mens health, and see lots of guys in ridiculous mustaches too. I will be one of those guys soon. I have never attempted to grow a mustache but we shall see what happens. Perhaps I will grow the Richard’s Blonde Handbars? Time will tell.

If any of you would like to learn more about Movember, or support me in my quest here is the links that will direct you to both.

http://mobro.co/CoreyHiller.

http://ca.movember.com/mens-health/

Cheers!

Posted in Drinks, Stories | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

It’s Pickling Time!

Pickles!Now I am a huge fan of pickles. Some might say a connoisseur. While growing up, we had at least 4 jars of pickles in our fridge at any one time. And at least 5 more on reserve when those ran out.

However, I have never pickled before. Didn’t really know how, but I decided to give it a whirl anyways. There were huge doubts in my household, but I was confident so I ran to the store, picked up an assortment of spices and went to work.

For my first go I decided to pickle cucumbers sliced a few different ways, radishes, onions and jalapenos. I figured these were safe bets.

To the vegetable mix I added a wide variety of spices: celery seed, mustard seed, coriander, bay leaves, dill seed,  cinnamon, ginger, allspice, red pepper flakes, garlic cloves, a bushel of fresh dill, a combination of black, red, pink, white and green peppercorns. Seems like the only thing I didn’t add was the kitchen sink.

I really didn’t measure the ingredients. I would say 1 to 1.5 table spoons of everything. I went quite a bit heavier on the coriander(1/3 cup), garlic(9 cloves), fresh dill(1 giant bushel) and peppercorns(1/3 cup). I was a bit worried I put too much in, however they came out really well. Crunchy, juicy and full of flavor.

Now for the pickling liquid I actually did measure. I mixed 2.5 cups of water with 2.5 cups of white vinegar, a 2/3 cup of sugar, a 1/3 cup salt and an accidental assortment of the pickling spices. You can definitely skip that last “ingredient”, because since I was trying to minimize the number of dishes used during the cooking experiment, the spoon that mixed the pickling spices together did the same job but for the liquid. Figured I should clarify this ahead of time since some friends had already asked why the liquid was moldy. -_-

Once the liquid was hot enough(just before a steady simmer) it was added to the vegetable-spice mixture

I kept it in there for a few hours, covered with tin foil and a pan.

I left it like this until the bowl was no longer hot. put it in the fridge and waited 24 hours. This was by far the toughest part. I was so anxious and curious to know if I had succeeded.

After 24hs everything looked pickly, But had I actually succeeded?It turns out I HAD!. They were crunchy and delicious and tasted like pickles. Nice flavors all round but particularly that of dill and with a hint of garlic.

Even after telling my mother it had worked she was still skeptical. She kept saying things like “When you were young I pickled all the time. It took at least a month, no way you can do it in a day.” And she kept that up until I convinced(or bugged her enough) to finally trying one. So she ate one…

and then another….

and then another….

and another.

Looks like they were delicious after all, eh Mother?🙂

Now these pickles wont last forever. They need to be kept in the fridge and eaten within a few weeks. To make them last longer the pickles would need to be put in airtight jars and pasteurized in order to eliminate/reduce any bacteria that would spoil them. If that is the case I would also go easier on the spices, since they will intensify the longer they sit in the pickling liquid.

I definitely will be making these again.

 

 

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