I could, and have on occasion, eat most of a whole pan of Rice Krispie treats. Reese's cups, not so much. However, I ate the combination, shared here, with both hands. They are so easy to make, I suggest you make a couple of batches. One for gifts and one for yourself.

I'll never know the difference if you buy a roll of refrigerated chocolate chip cookie dough at the grocery store. You will though. First, it won't be as good as homemade and most importantly, there won't be any leftover dough for cookies.

I've heard of suddenly salad mixes for as long as they've been available, but only occasionally, vaguely wondered if they'd figgered out a way to box lettuce. Of course, it's a pasta salad and I love all things pasta. How can you mess up pasta? I bought one. It can be done!! I promise it will only take a tiny bit more time to make your own rather than opening a box.

Pasta Salad

2 cups pasta  (shape of your choice, cooked al dente according to the package directions) Set aside to cool.

1 medium carrot, shredded

1 cup frozen peas

3/4 cup mayonnaise

1/2 ounce dry ranch dressing mix

1/4 cup bacon bits,optional

Bring 2 cups of water to boil. Add peas. Blanche one minute. Drain; rinse in cold water. Drain well. Set aside to cool. Combine mayonnaise and dressing mix. Chill 10 minutes or so.

In a large bowl, combine carrots, pasta and dressing. Mix until well coated. Gently fold in peas. Chill thoroughly. Garnish with bacon just before serving if desired. Cook's note: Add two or three tablespoons of finely diced sweet onion, finely diced red, yellow and green bell peppers if desired.

Reese's Cups Krispies

1 cup sugar

1 cup white Karo syrup

1 1/2 cups peanut butter

4 1/2 cups Rice Krispies

1 package mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

1/3 cup chocolate chips

In a medium size, heavy saucepan over medium heat, heat sugar, syrup and peanut butter until the sugar dissolves, stirring constantly. In a large bowl, combine peanut butter mixture and Rice Krispies until well coated. Stir in chocolate chips. Cool mixture about two minutes. Stir in Reese's cups. Drop by tablespoons onto waxed paper. May spread in a 9x13 pan if desired. Cut into squares. Cover and store in a cool place.

Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Squares

8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature

1/2 cup sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

*16 ounces chocolate chip cookie dough, divided

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add vanilla and egg. Beat until smooth. Spread half the cookie dough in the bottom of an 8x8 inch baking dish. Pour cream cheese mixture evenly over cookie dough. Drop remaining cookie dough over the top by teaspoonfuls. Bake 35-40 minutes. Cool 30 minutes. Chill 2 hours. Cut into squares.

*Cookie dough recipe

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon soda

2 sticks butter at room temperature

3/4 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup white sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup chocolate chips

3/4 cup chopped pecans

Cream butter and sugars until smooth and light. Add eggs and vanilla. Whisk together dry ingredients. Add dry ingredients to the egg mixture one third at a time, beating until mostly incorporated after each. Fold in chocolate chips and pecans.

Weigh out eight ounces and spread in baking dish. Spread cream cheese mixture over the cookie dough. Weigh eight ounces; dollop over cream cheese mixture. Make cookies with the remaining dough. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drop cookie dough by rounded tablespoons onto parchment lined cookie sheet. Bake 10 minutes or until cookies are brown around the edges and barely done in the center. Cool five minutes on the cookie sheet. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

Miss Olivia Sipe is the owner of Miss Olivia’s Table in Maryville.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.