Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Im back! It is Snackadium Time!! Pt 1

So, I think it is fitting to make my return to blogging about my most spectacular party spread yet.  First, why I have been gone for so long.  It was my dream to be a special education administrator so that I could help as many students with disabilities and their families as possible.  When I had started this blog I had worked 6+ years in special education and was teaching in a self contained special education high school for students with intellectual disabilities.  There I had taken many leadership positions as a teacher and helped improve the academic and transition programs at my school for 250 students and felt it was time to move to the next level.  I worked on getting my second masters in educational leadership, and that is why I stopped blogging.  There was no way I could write 10+ page papers each week and write for fun.  Then, I got my dream job.  However, district based leadership jobs are completely different than school based.  It was nothing as I imagined.  I won't get into specifics, but even though I was good at my job and made a difference, my heart is completely in the classroom with my kids.

So now I am back to blogging.  My plans have changed and for the first time in 11 years I don't have a career goal. It feels weird.  From when I graduated with my undergraduate degree until I finished my second masters degree I was continuously in school with no more than 2 semesters off.  I got my masters in special education and then was working on my doctorate in curriculum and instruction when I came down with Gastroparesis and had to scale down my dream of having a doctoral degree.  I then got my National Board Certification, and was back into school for the second masters.  I guess this is my time to breathe!

Enough about me... lets talk about the party.  For the Super Bowl our friends decided to have a party and as usual my husband and I started brainstorming what we were going to bring.  I made the mistake of mentioning a snackadium that I had seen earlier in Rachel Ray's magazine.  That small comment turned into the Snackadium madness.  My husband instantly started creating Facebook posts telling everyone about the crazy Snackadium we were going to build and bring.  Guess who was cooking it all?  Here are some of the recipe highlights.  I will share the construction, dessert dome, and final product in another post.

The first parts I created were peanut butter pretzel footballs.  I have to tell you, it took me forever to find these pretzels.  I went to 4 different stores over 2 days and nothing.  My husband finally found them at World Market.

The recipe for these pretzel footballs can be found at plainchicken.

Then I started to think about how I would create the walls of the snackadium.  I did not want to make 5 million sandwiches like other snackadiums, so instead I started to make pans upon pans of krispy treat bars.  I decided to make them using cookie pans so they would be thin enough so I could stand the bars up like walls.

The first type I made were basic krispy treats using Trix cereal.  I got the recipe from Cravingsofalunatic.  If I made them again, I would increase the amount of marshmallows.  They were a bit dry for me.

Since I wanted to do something different with my rice krispy treats, I looked for something using cake mix.  No, I can't eat them being gluten free but my cake mix chex mix went over so well I figured I would try it in another way.  I made cake batter rice crispy treats from Now you Can Pin It!  Since I didn't want to spend money on sprinkles with all of the ingredients I was buying (a small amount of $, but it was the point of it all) I used funfetti cake mix.  

Then I wanted to add some chocolate to the mix, so I chose to make these nutella rice crispy treats.

The last ones I made were my own creation.  Very easy but they were SOO good.  Glad I had some left over to snack on!

Candy Covered Rice Crispy Treats

6 cups of rice krispies 
3 Tbs of salted butter
1 10 oz bag of marshmallows 
Wilton candy melts in your favorite colors (took approximately 1.5 bags total)

In a microwave safe bowl combine the butter and marshmallows.  Heat for 1.5 minutes, stir, then go for 1.5 minutes more.  Stir until smooth then add the rice krispies.  Stir until coated.  Spray cookie sheet or pan with cooking spray and push mixture in pan.  Cool in the refrigerator.  Cut the treats into bars.  Heat the Wilton candy melts according to the directions on the bag.  Put the individual treats on parchment paper.  Take a silicone pastry brush and brush the melted candy on one side of the treat, turn, and then the other.  Let cool in fridge.  

Originally the candy was for candy coated Oreos in the Seahawks and Broncos colors, but I definitely think the krispy treats beat them out.  Did I mention how good they are?  Its the winter, I go sugar crazy. Its getting late so I will post more soon.  Glad to be back!