Orange Sunrises

The weekend is meant for sipping cocktails and that means making time for these orange sunrises!

Orange Sunrises

When I first turned 21 a zillion years ago, I was big on mixed drinks. I think it’s just a naive phase we all go through, ordering things that make us seem fancy or sophisticated. Mainly, I had yet to discover craft beers or good wine. Friends and I would go out and we’d always get the same things: Midori sours. I’ll share those later. But I think if I could go back in time, I’d tell my younger self to try these Orange Sunrises.

They are fairly simple drinks, not a lot of fuss. The sweet and sour mix gives it a great punch and the Grenadine, well that does what Grenadine always does. It gives a rich, unbelievable sweetness that I love in everything from cocktails to lemonades. Lovely for the summer and sipping by the pool!

Orange Sunrises

Orange Sunrises

Orange Sunrises

Orange Sunrises

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces orange juice
  • 1 ounce sweet and sour mix
  • 1 1/2 ounces rum
  • 1 ounce Grenadine

Instructions

  1. Place ice in a glass. Pour in orange juice, rum and sweet and sour mix and stir. Pour in Grenadine. Serve.
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S’mores Frappuccino

Don’t bother going to the store and spending a fortune on frilly drinks. The S’mores frappuccino is easy to make at home without the extra cost or endless urge to also add a piece of lemon loaf to your order.

S'mores Frappuccino

I stopped drinking frilly coffee drinks from stores a few months ago. It was around the time I was given the espresso machine and turned into a major coffee snob. I’ll still whip up a white mocha at home or test out a raspberry white chocolate latte to get the flavors just right. But ordering one at Starbucks is not something I do anymore. The espresso machine turned me into a brat and now, I’m a flat white gal. No sugar. It’s intense and I feel intense when I drink it. 

Except then Starbucks decided to make a S’mores frappuccino and well, I couldn’t resist it. I wasn’t really planning on getting one, more than happy to just stick to my standard sip. But it was someone’s birthday and so we ordered up a round of the frosty treats.

Have you tried one of these yet? Because if you have, you’ll understand why I became instantly addicted. Sweet, marshmallow-filled, chocolately. Just like summer should taste. Since I am cheap, I decided to recreate them at home. There’s nothing like shoving a big spoonful of marshmallowey goodness into your mouth. Try this one at home and let me know what you think!

S’mores Frappuccino

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 3 Tbsp. chocolate syrup
  • 2 sheets graham crackers
  • 1/2 cup marshmallow fluff, plus 4 Tbsp.
  • 4 cups ice
  • whipped cream and crushed graham crackers for garnish.

Instructions

  1. Place 2 Tbsp. marshmallow fluff in the bottom of two glasses. Set aside.
  2. In a blender, combine milk, chocolate syrup, graham crackers and 1/2 cup marshmallow fluff until smooth.
  3. Add in ice and blend until smooth. Divide between the two glasses.
  4. Top with whipped cream and crushed graham crackers.
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Honey Harissa Chicken

Chicken can certainly be a mundane dinner option, especially if you eat it often. Honey harissa chicken is a spicy yet sweet way to change up your boring chicken game.

Honey Harissa Chicken

Sweet flavors are always welcome on my plate, no matter what the situation. And while in the past years I’ve gravitated slightly more towards salty snacks and bites, sweet things will always be on my mind. But what I love more than flat out sweets – more than a candy bar or bite of chocolate – is sweet combinations. Sweet and salty or, even better, sweet and spicy. A sweet heat is the best kind of heat and the best kind of sweetness.

When I first heard of harissa – most likely from some blog that posted some recipe that sounded interesting – I had no idea what type of flavor it gave. I just grabbed a jar on a hunger-driven whim while at the grocery store. One quick whiff made it clear that harissa would certainly be the heat in a sweet heat combo. Harissa is actually a chili pepper paste (in other words, hot). It is Tunisian in origin, is bright red and is incredibly flavorful, if a little strong. 

I wanted to slather it on some chicken, since the chicken game gets incredibly tedious after a while. But I knew that using harissa straight, directly from the jar, would prove dangerous. Using new ingredients is always a gamble at my dinner table. It is more often than not met with eye rolls, some sort of complaint and an evening of groans and sighs. So instead, I cut it with some honey. Ok, a good bit of honey. It cut down that heat enough to please my family, but not so much that you couldn’t get the flavors from the harissa. It’s definitely a dish that will show up on our dinner menu in the future! How do you serve your chicken when boredom sets in?

Adapted from The Endless Meal

Honey Harissa Chicken

Ingredients

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons harissa
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, miced

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place chicken on a baking sheet and bake or 15 to 20 minutes until cooked through.
  2. While the chicken bakes, start the sauce. Heat oil over medium heat in a sauce pan.
  3. Add in honey and harissa, vinegar and garlic and mix until combined. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat to low.
  4. Simmer until the chicken finished and the sauce thickens. Spoon the sauce over top of the chicken, then place the chicken under a broiler for 3 minutes. Serve with additional sauce.
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Angry Orchard BBQ Sauce

Angry Orchard BBQ Sauce

There is something about summer and warm weather that just screams BBQ sauce. It’s thick and sweet, tangy and sassy. My favorite thing is slathering it quite liberally over ribs or chicken, then broiling them so they get a nice, caramel-like crust. And while you may think BBQ sauce is delicious – nectar of the BBQ gods, if you will – you have no idea until you’ve tried homemade BBQ sauce. It’s a completely different animal.

Angry Orchard BBQ Sauce

I made a root beer version last summer and have been using it on basically everything ever since. But a recent influx of Angry Orchard in my fridge had me interested in trying a new variation, so I went with Angry Orchard BBQ sauce this time around. I used some of their crisp apple flavor in place of the root beer. I then took the BBQ sauce off to Vegas and married it. Or at least I would have, if Vegas wasn’t so far away. This sauce, man. It is amazing. The hard cider is sweet with just a hint of tarty flavor. I globbed it onto some chicken for lunches this week and then promptly ate all of it. I couldn’t wait.

Angry Orchard BBQ Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 1 vidalia onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 cup crisp apple Angry Orchard
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. molasses

Instructions

  1. Heat canola oil over medium high in a pan. Add onions and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add in garlic and cook until fragrant, another 30 seconds.
  2. Add in smoked paprika and stir until the onions are coated.
  3. Add in the Angry Orchard and cook 5 minutes.
  4. Stir in ketchup, brown sugar and molasses and cook 15 more minutes until thicken.
  5. Transfer to a jar. Keep refrigerated.
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Dirty Chocolate Egg Creams

Dirty Chocolate Egg Creams

In fourth grade, I broke my arm running backwards in gym class. Thinking back now, I’m not really sure how it didn’t happen sooner. Our “gym” was the church parking lot, filled with potholes. We loved it, but it was really just a mine field, waiting for one clumsy child to sink their foot in just the right way. Really, I can’t be bitter about the experience. Doesn’t every kid wish for a broken bone at some point? No? It’s fun to imagine having a cast, getting your friends to sign it, having everyone cater to you. And then you really break a bone and realize how stupid you were for wishing it on yourself.

Regardless, the day after the infamous fall, my mom took me to the doctor. They were closed for lunch so we went to this kistchy little place called Nifty Fifties. Anyone from the Philadelphia area knows about Nifty Fifties. It was essentially a 50s style diner. You can picture it. Bright neon signs, a glowing juke box playing out old classics and dozens upon dozens of different soda-shop foods and drinks. I’m pretty sure I tried a chocolate soda for the first time that day. It was, in a word, amazing.

Dirty Chocolate Egg Creams

But this piece is about chocolate egg creams, so let’s talk about those for a minute. In Harriet The Spy, one of my most favorite childhood books, she orders a chocolate egg cream. And for years, I thought it was disgusting. Who would drink something with an egg in?! What madness is this?! Nifty Fifites had egg creams on their menu but why would I ever order that? It’s just insanity.

Kids think silly things sometimes, I swear. My mom was kind enough to enlighten me on egg creams. Of course, there isn’t any actual egg in there. It’s essentially soda water, cream and chocolate syrup. This classic drink is frothy, sweet, creamy, chocolatey. It’s made of hopes and dreams and joy. I could drink two every day and die happy and 500 pounds. 

But I’m an adult now so let’s grow up a little. And by grow up, I mean toss some liquor in there and make it more fun for the older crowd. I went with a little rum. Why the heck not? It’s perfect with the chocolate. You could probably try vodka – and if you are really cheesy, try one of those whipped cream flavored vodkas. But let’s just stick to rum for the time being and enjoy this without the gimmick there. Yep, dirty chocolate egg creams have officially made my “must have” cocktail list.

Dirty Chocolate Egg Creams

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 4 Tbsp. chocolate syrup
  • 2 ounces rum
  • seltzer

Instructions

  1. Divide milk and rum between two glasses. Stir gently.
  2. Pour in seltzer, to fill, slowly. Divide chocolate syrup between the two glasses and stir gently to combine.
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