Mac + Molly

Marshmallow Popcorn Bars

Marshmallow Popcorn Bars Recipe

I’m back from my mini-vacation and feel so rejuvenated! As much as I like West Virginia, I sometimes get in a bit of a rut missing my friends in Michigan and Chicago. Lately I’ve really been missing the city. This past weekend we visited a place called Blue Hole with some friends (thanks Jenna!) and then Ben and I stayed at Stonewall Resort and I feel like my homesickness has faded a little bit. West Virginia is gorgeous and swimming at Blue Hole was such a neat experience that I feel like I like it here even more now!

I had a couple friends over last night to catch up and chat and be girls. I made 3 pitchers of sangria and some of the girls offered to bring snacks. I wanted to make something to share and just getting back from a weekend away, I wanted something easy to make. These little Marshmallow Popcorn Bars were so easy to whip up and they are so cute! Perfect for an impromptu girls’ night.

Marshmallow Popcorn Bars:

6 cups popped popcorn
10 oz. bag marshmallows
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter (+ a little extra for the popcorn if you’re popping your own)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Extra marshmallows for decorating – optional
Sprinkles – optional

You’ll need 6 cups of popped popcorn. I used this popcorn popper from Sur La Table that my friend Melia got me for Christmas and it worked like magic!

Microwave Popcorn Popper

You can use unpopped kernels and just microwave them with the amount of butter you want. I added a little bit of salt after it was popped, too.

Popcorn

Sur La Table Popcorn Popper

In a big pot, you’ll want to melt your butter and then add your bag of marshmallows. I use mini because I like how they melt, but you can use the big ones too.

Mini Marshmallows

While you marshmallows are getting all melty, you can butter a 9×13 baking dish.

Once it’s all melted together, add your vanilla and stir to combine.

Popcorn Marshmallow Bars Ingredients

Next, stir in your popcorn. Make sure there are no kernels and only the fluffy, popped stuff. It may take a while to combine, and some of the popcorn will get smashed, but that’s fine. Just make sure your popcorn is coated.

Popped Popcorn

Turn out the popcorn mixture into your buttered baking dish. Use your hands (I sprayed mine with a little Pam to do this) to press it into a flat layer.

Popcorn Bars

Top everything off with a few extra mini marshmallows and some sprinkles and then let it cool. Cut into squares and serve!

Marshmallow Popcorn Bars

Chocolate Espresso Bread with Vanilla Glaze

Chocolate Espresso Bread Recipe

This weekend I’m FINALLY getting out with my boyfriend for a little trip. We’d been talking about it since we moved to West Virginia, but you know how things just always seem to pop up and get in the way. Well, it’s finally happening and I’m hoping to see a few new sights and read a new book and maybe even get some sun on my pale legs! Oh, don’t worry. Molly is coming too!

Since I have plans to get out of my apartment (Hallelujah!) for a few days, I decided I’d better get to making some goodies before I left and didn’t have access to a kitchen. You know, just to get it out of my system. I still (stilllll…) have some leftover instant espresso powder from when I made Coffee Cake Muffins and this Banana Breakfast Shake, so of course it was time to try using it again. You don’t have to use much to get the flavor in baking, so I’m thinking I’m going to have to drink this stuff. That probably means I’m going to have to buy a cute little demitasse cup, and quite frankly, I can’t find anything wrong with this idea!

Chocolate Espresso Bread Recipe:

1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup whole milk
1/4 cup cold brewed coffee
1-1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon instant espresso powder
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips + 1 Tablespoon flour to keep them from sinking

Vanilla Glaze:

1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-3 Tablespoons whole milk

First, grease a 5×9 loaf pan with spray oil and pre-heat your oven to 350-degrees.

Then, in a medium sized bowl, combine both sugars, vegetable oil, egg, vanilla, milk and cold coffee and whisk until everything is combined. You’ll end up with a grey looking mixture that doesn’t look very appetizing, but that’s okay!

Chocolate Espresso Bread Wet Ingredients

Next, in a large sized bowl, combine all of your dry ingredients except the chocolate chips.

Chocolate Espresso Bread Dry Ingredients

Now you’re ready to mix!

Slowly pour your wet ingredients into the large bowl of dry ingredients and stir just until combined.

Chocolate Espresso Bread Batter

In another small bowl, add your chocolate chips and tablespoon of flour. Toss around until your chips are coated.

Chocolate Chips

Add them to your batter and stir until combined.

Pour your batter into your greased loaf pan. Bake at 350-degrees for 50-minutes to an hour, until you can insert a toothpick and it comes out clean.

For the glaze, you’ll add your powdered sugar to a bowl. Pour in your vanilla and add your milk 1 tablespoon at a time. Use a whisk to blend, you’ll know if you more milk because it will clump inside the whisk.

Vanilla Glaze Recipe

Adding a little more milk at a time, you’ll end up with a smooth, creamy glaze.

Homemade Vanilla Glace Recipe

Once your bread has cooled COMPLETELY, you can drizzled the top with the vanilla glaze. The bread is a slightly bitter, chocolate and coffee flavor, so don’t be shy with that sweet creamy glaze!

Chocolate Espresso Bread

I used a fairly large soup ladle to top my bread with glaze and then went back in with a small dinner spoon and some melted chocolate chips to do a smaller chocolate drizzle. Then I topped it with semi-sweet chocolate chips, because why not?

Have a very happy weekend! It’s already mid-July so be sure you plan something you wanted to do this summer before it’s over!

The Best Bloody Mary Recipe

Best Bloody Mary Recipe

My family likes to drink. I mean they just really like to drink. Whenever we get together, usually the first question is, “Would you like a glass of wine?” and my answer is always, “Yes, now please.”

Sometimes when I visit my dad and Tami I even get morning cocktails. I’m talking mimosas and the queen of drinks, The Bloody Mary. During one visit Tami told me that the secret ingredient is dill sauce. I hate pickles so of course I immediately was a little hesitant, but I trusted her and tried it. And O M G am I glad I did. It adds that special little flavor that real good Bloodys have. I’ve been having a hard time finding it in WV, but luckily I still have a little bit left.

The Best Bloody Mary Recipe:

3 oz. Vodka
5 oz. Bloody Mary mix – Use Zing Zang if you can find it!
1 Tablespoon Dill sauce
Juice from 1/4 of a lemon – about 1 Tablespoon
Fresh ground black pepper
Dashes of hot sauce – Tabasco is my favorite
1/4 teaspoon salt – for the rim
1/4 teaspoon celery salt – for the rim

Wet the rim of your glass with lemon.

Bloody Mary Lemon Rim

On a plate or napkin, mix your salt and celery salt until evenly combined. Coat the rim with the salt mixture.

Bloody Mary Rim

Fill your cup about 3/4 full with ice.

Add your vodka, dill sauce and Zing Zang mix and stir.

Next squeeze your lemon juice in and stir in your pepper and hot sauce, tasting as you go to get the right amount. I like mine pretty spicy, so I go pretty heavy. I know other people think mine are a bit too much, so if you have guests this is where I usually let them do that part themselves.

Bloody Mary

Zing Zang Bloody Mary Mix

I skip the straw for this cocktail because I love that celery salt rim!

Do you have any secrets for your favorite Bloody Mary recipe?