A yummy weekend

Hey everyone!! Hope your week is off to a great start.

I had a good (and busy) weekend. It went by quickly, but it was fun while it lasted. How was yours?

Friday night we had some camp people over for a li’l get-together. I made some tasty desserts, including the caramel apple cheesecake squares I blogged about a while ago, and also s’mores bars … my Aunt Carmen’s recipe, which I love very much. (Was that confusing? To clarify, I love both the aunt and the recipe very much.)

The cheesecake was good, but I probably won’t make it again. It just wasn’t apple-y enough for my tastes, even though I increased the amount of apples in the recipe. And the caramel topping, although it looks really good, makes it very very very sweet. The recipe has a lot of steps and takes quite a bit of time (you make a crust and then cheesecake and then apples and then a streusel topping) … and I think that amount of time might be better spent making a good old fashioned, never disappointing, straight-up apple pie. At least for me.

But it turned out fine, and even if I didn’t love it, you might. If you want to try it, just follow the recipe here. I didn’t make many changes. I did add an extra apple to the topping (bringing the total for my version to 4 apples) and I cut down the butter just a tad here and there in the recipe. It is a Paula Deen recipe after all — yipes. I doubt it made much of a difference; it’s still an incredibly rich dessert.

The s’mores bars I have made many times, and they never fail to impress. They couldn’t be simpler, but when people eat them they become overjoyed. :-) I recommend them for any gathering.

[like how ben is reading in the background? pretty cool shot eh?]

Aunt Carmen’s S’mores Bars

3/4 cup light corn syrup
3 Tbsp butter or margarine
12 oz. milk chocolate chips*
1 tsp vanilla
12 oz. Golden Grahams (1 box)
3 cups miniature marshmallows

In a small saucepan heat corn syrup, butter and chocolate chips to boiling, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Pour over cereal in bowl and toss to coat. Fold in marshmallows. Press into buttered 9×13-inch pan. Let stand 1 hour to harden. Cut into small squares because everyone is going to want one.

Well, suffice it to say that Ben and I have eaten a lot of desserts this weekend. Sigh. So much for not becoming a fatty this winter. :D

But that’s not all there was to my weekend. Saturday night Ben and I went to see a movie at a historic Art Deco movie theater in downtown Portsmouth called the Commodore.

[photo from their website]

It is a REALLY cool place, very retro and romantic. It was built in 1945. It originally seated 1,000, but it has just one big screen. In the 1970s it was falling into disrepair but someone bought it and totally refurbished it and turned it into a dinner theater. Now the main floor has small tables each with a lamp and a telephone, and little plush armchairs (there’s a balcony with regular theater seating too). You come early, check out the menu, then call the kitchen on your telephone and place your order. Eventually they bring your food and you eat while the movie starts to play.

The food is not too fancy, but it is GOOD. Very, very good eating — I was pleasantly surprised. Ben ordered nachos, and he got a biiiig platter with real cheese, not the fakey stuff, and toppings, which he enjoyed very much. I ordered a roast beef and cheese sandwich, and I was expecting some halfway-decent little deli style sandwich. Instead, the sandwich was on a soft homemade roll and there were slices of tender medium-rare beef with soft melty cheese — so yummy!!! I also ordered hot chocolate, which came in a beautiful glass mug with fresh whipped cream on top.

The movie was “Tower Heist” which was very silly, but we had a good time. It’s just such an unusual movie-going experience, so it’s a lot of fun.

[it’s all about the mood lighting!]

Other than that, I spent most of the rest of my weekend studying and baking banana bread. I’ve mentioned before that here at camp we get food donations from grocery stores and stuff. I can’t bring myself to touch much of the produce because it is so close to rotten, and sometimes it is rotten. But bananas are an exception; the browner and smushier the better, for making banana bread at least! I have the best recipe ever for banana bread, and I made 2 loaves — one with chocolate chips (!!!) and one without. I froze one, and the other one I’ve been slicing and eating for just about every meal. :-)

Yes, I do like food a lot. Haha. How’d you know? :-P

This week is going to be very, very busy but I’m hoping to post semi-regularly. Thanks for reading and I hope your week is fantastic!

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