Friday, December 9, 2011

Home Made Marshmallows

This week I tried my hand at making marshmallows! It was pretty easy, considering the end result. They pared with hot chocolate just as well as you may imagine. Eating them out of the bag was just as good! :)

The only thing I recommend is having a stand mixer. You can do it with a hand mixer, but the mixing time is 12 MINUTES!!! So it may be a little hard on you're hand mixer.

Here we go....

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 3 (1/4-ounce) packages unflavored gelatin
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (or more if you like)
  • Corn Starch, and Confectioners' sugar, sifted, for coating (I did a cup of each)

  • Prep...
  • Take a 9X9 inch pan (or 9X13 depending on how big you want them) and coat it with cooking spray. Then take you're parchment paper, and line the pan so that the edges go up the the rim of the pan. Coat the paper with cooking spray too.

  • Like this...

After that, take your gelatin packets, and cold water, and combine them in a bowl. Now ideally this will be you're stand mixer bowl, but if you're not using one, a regular mixing bowl is just fine.

Then in a heavy medium saucepan, combine you're sugar, corn syrup, and 1/4 cup of water, and turn you're heat on med/high. With a wire whisk, stir to make sure all is incorporated, so your dry sugar doesn't burn. Stir it even couple of minuets until it boils. Now, I didn't have a candy thermometer, but you're goal is a 230-240 degree boil. This is a really hard boil, and should take you about 9 minutes to achieve this boil. Don't let it burn!! This means not walking away from it at all!!

Once it has reached that hard boil, let it boil for appox. 1 minute. Then add you're salt, and take you're pan to you're mixer, and pour the molten sugar into you're mixing bowl. With your whisk attached to the mixer, turn it on low. I draped a kitchen towel around my Kitchen Aid so it didn't spatter all over my kitchen.

Once it has combine, flip it into over drive!! Turn you're mixer on it's highest setting, and set you're timer for 12 minutes. YES, 12 MINUTES!

When it's done, it will be cooled enough to touch. Remover the bowl from the mixer, and pour into you're greased pan. Take a greased spatula, and smooth it out. Cover it with cling wrap and put it aside for 4 hours, or until it's set and completely cooled.

The next part is up to you. I flipped the pan and let it fall onto a powdered working surface, and dusted the top, and a pizza cutter with my corn starch/ powdered sugar mixture. At this point you could use cookie cutters. Then I proceeded to cut rows, then cubes. I then threw them into a bowl with the dusting mixture, and then a zip lock baggy. They will keep for 3 weeks.

My plan, when I make them again is to pour half of the "dough" into the greased pan. Then make a mixture of red food coloring, and peppermint extract, and drizzle that over whats in the pan. Then pour the remainder of the "dough" on top of the drizzle. Then take a butter knife and swirl it in the pan, to make a candy cane looking treat.

I would really like to give these to a few neighbors inviting them to the Christmas Eve service. We'll see. :)


NOTE: Because of the nature of the REALLY REALLY hot sugar, I would suggest you wait to make these until the kids are asleep!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

CVS Couponing Trip

Okay, so while the rest of the drugstores were having a pretty boring week, CVS was pretty good!! I guess it's all in what your looking for.

They were having a sale on Air Wick products. Originally the couponing web sites were saying that product that was on sale for $7.99, then a $4 off, which is pretty good. But then on top of that, if you spent $20 on that product, you got 10 ECB's back. That made the deal even better.

When the circular came around, people were discovering that a) the ECB deal worked for the $4.99 Air Wick kit, b) also the $4 off coupon worked for the 4.99 Air Wick kit, and c) if you bought 4, even though it only rings up to 19.96 it still gave you the ECB's!!! So essentially this could be a money maker of $6.04 after sale, coupons, and ECB's!!

Unfortunately for me, I could only get my hands on 2, but I still got a great deal!!

This is all the stuff I got. Before sales and coupons, it rang up to over $38.

These were the 4 Air Wick products I got.

This was on sale for .99, i had a .75 off coupon making it .24!!!I was so glad that this went on sale because we were out.

So here's the breakdown...

4 Air Wick products at 4.99 = $19.96
-(2)$4 off coupons = $11.96 before tax

Dawn Dish soap at .99
-.75 = .24
For everything = $12.20

-5.99 previous ECB's I had.

My out of pocket cost with tax was $7.83!!

But 10 ECB's printed out on my receipt!!

PLUS- a $4 off 20 coupon printed on my receipt too!!

This also sets me up for an amazing deal next week on diapers where I plan on paying less than $3 a pack!!

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Friday, August 26, 2011

Couponing week 8/14

Couponing this week took a bit of a back seat as Adah was sick, and we went camping with my parents for a couple days. I haven't even finished clipping my coupons yet. :/

And... Unfortunately, I don't have pics of what I got because we tore into it when I got home.

Walgreens... Believe it or not, I have yet to coupon at Walgreens due to the fact that I really wanted to get to know their rewards program. I glad I did, because Walgreens will double their own coupons with manufacturers coupons. The only catch is, you have to have as many items as coupons, i.e. If you want to double a coupon on one item, you have to get another item to even out your coupon/ item ractio. Its REALLY easy to do that right now with all the back to school stuff that is literally pennies rit now.

I'm not going to do a price breakdown because I broke the #1 rule of couponing... NEVER take your kids, this resulted in paying way more and getting Adah a pair of Tinker Bell socks that she didn't need. Oh boy!

Anyhow, Huggies has a new diaper product that is onesale at Walgreens for $9.49 right now, with $2 Register Rewards. But, to make this deal even better, as with most of new products, there is a $3 off coupon out right now, making it essentially $4.49!!

I also got Skippy peanut butter. The price was $3.49 each, but there was an in-ad coupon (2/$4). I also had a $1 off coupon making it $1.50 each. Because you had to buy 2 for the offer to work, I didn't need to get an extra item, but I did. :/

This was a great introductory trip to Walgreens. I really like their rewards program because you don't have to sign up for anything, or remember to bring a card. It just a coupon program.

CVS... I am becoming very aware of CVS's rewards program and Extra Care Bucks, (and cashiers lol!), and am really getting the hang of how to split up the transaction to keep my OOP (out of pocket) really low.

This week there was a really good deal on Revlon Lipstick. They are $6.99 regular price, but you get 5 ECB back. There is also a $1 off coupon making it $.99!! Unfortunately, I only had one coupon, and I would have bought more had I known that it included lip glosses too. :/. So I only got 1.

While in the cosmetics, I found a gem! Cover girl colorstay lipstick for $2.24 clearance. There were a lot to choose from, and I had a cover girl $1 off coupon, making this normally $7.99 lipstick, $1.24!! I didn't know if it would work so I only got one, but I think I may go back with e remaining coupons I have.

I am also finding that the one of the three drugstores will almost always have a deal for a nice razor. Sometimes as low as .99! So I got Jon a schick hypro 3 razor (8.49) for $1.49 with ECBs and coupons.

This weeks was okay, but I didn't have a whole lot of time to prepare for this shopping trips, but still made out pretty good!

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Couponing week 8/7

This is from almost 2 weeks ago, but we have been busy with the Harvest Crusades, Adah being sick, and camping, so I'm am just now posting some of the deals I scored from that week.

So my main objective for this trip was to get Pull-Ups. Adah is just about potty trained, but we were headed to the crusade, and I didn't want to take any chances with accidents while we were away from home.

I had a couple of other things I wanted to get to so this is what I got...

Pampers Easy Ups, renuzit, and Dryers dibs.

This was the best deal I had gotten on diapers. Generally I think think a sale price of about $8.99 is good on diapers. We use to get Adah the big Costco box of diapers, but because she is so close to being fully potty trained, it's not worth it. So when I saw this deal I had to take advantage.
Diapers on sale= $8.99, I had a $2 off coupon, and I got ECBs back.

Final price= $3.99 about 14 cents a diaper.

This was a splurge I was not proud of, but we both wanted ice cream, and it would have cost more if we went somewhere to get it.

Sale price= 3.99

Renuzit, this is why I need to post soon after I go shopping, I cant remember the deal with these, but I do remember they came out to be about 56 cents each. I don't love these types of air fresheners, but I wanted to get something to freshen up our house, so these will do for now.

My bill came out to $7.43 with coupons, and ECBs! Not too shabby!

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Friday, August 5, 2011

Churnin' the Butter

No, your eyes have not deceived you, I am getting 2 blog posts out in 1 day!!

My Mother in-law's birthday was this week, and she is really into very thoughtful gifts. I decided to make her home made butter, and get a really nice loaf of bread from Panera Bread to go with it.
This is making butter in the most modern way imaginable, but it is fun to make your own butter, and I found it to be really really easy. Adah had a great time watching it too!

You will need...

A food processor
1 pint Heavy whipping cream
Cheese cloth
Whatever kind of seasoning you want. (this could be just salt, or you could make a sweet butter with some honey)

Start by emptying the pint of whipping cream into your food processor. If you have a normal sized processor, it will cover the blades. Flip it to the on (not pulse) position, and leave it on for several minutes.

This is the first phase in the cream. It will begin to look like whipped cream. I snagged a little bit to put in a bowl, and mixed it with powdered sugar for Adah and I to dip our strawberries in. YUM!!!

Then it will look like this. Very thick, but it's still not done. You are looking for it to separate. You will know when it does. It will do it all of the sudden, and it will be almost "slushy."

Then take your cheese cloth and drape it over a bowl. Pour the mixture over the bowl, then squeeze out the buttermilk with the cheese cloth into the bowl. Keep the buttermilk for another recipe.

Put the butter in a small airtight container. You can leave it like it is, or mix salt, or anything you want into it.

I didn't get a picture of the finished product. :(

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