Chocolate Diablo Cookies

I’m not sure whether I should love or hate my friend Cheryl who told me about this recipe.  If you love heat and chocolate, you’ll be in HEAVEN!

Dark Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, Heat and Salt.  It’s a crispy on the outside, fudgy on the inside flavor explosion and you may need a kleenex for a runny nose.  All in all an amazing taste experience.

This is adapted from a blogger who adapted it from Canadian Living.

I got almost 40, so you may want to halve the recipe if you don’t have a few hot lovers in your house.  Oy, that sounded bad, lol

Dry Ingredients – Med bowl

  • 1.5 cups white Flour
  • 1 cup Epicure cocoa (or other dark rich Cocoa)
  • 1 tsp Epicure’s Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Cayenne powder
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup Belgian Milk Chocolate chips or chunks
  • Coarse or flaked sea salt (maybe 1 tsp?).  I had some Pink Hawaiian on hand so used that.

Preheat oven to 375.  I never used to pre-heat although I do for baking.  It’s actually important.  Google it.  Sift flour and cocoa (I never sift and I do recommend you sift this recipe since there is no stand mixer involved).  Mix in other dry ingredients EXCEPT the sea salt.

Wet – Smallish Bowl

  • 1/2 cup Avocado Oil (I avoid GMO’s – you could use a vegetable oil)
  • 1/2cup egg whites or 2 lg eggs (I had egg whites left from a batch of Hollandaise)
  • 2 tsps Epicure Vanilla
  • 3 Tbsp fresh Grated Ginger

Whisk together wet ingredients.

Pour wet ingredients into dry.  Mix until just combined.  Mine was pretty dry, almost like a graham crust consistency so I crumbed it together with my hands.

Diablo - crumble

Take a small handful and squeeze it together to make a cookie ball.

Diablo - roll into ball

Press it down about 1/2 way with the back of your measuring cup.  Sprinkle on a pinch of sea salt.  Diable - Raw

Bake 9-10 mins (if making only 2 dozen large bake 11 mins) just until they start to crack. As soon as you can handle it rip them off the cookie sheet and dig in!

Diable - cooked

Top 15 things to do now to Rock Epicure in 2015

It’s Sunday Dec 28th.  Most of our holiday merry making has been done and we’re in our last days of 2015.  Here’s my EPICURE Top 15 list for the next 10 days or so:

  1. Send out your customer email with the ‘In the Vault’ and ‘Boxing Week Specials’.  Do this ASAP.  Only 3 days left for the Boxing Week.  Be sure to include the January Booking Specials
  2. RSVP for a local Product Launch if there is one available to you.  An hour or two is WORTH IT to travel to a PL.  The list is available here (http://content NULL.epicure NULL.com/web_marketing/2014/december/consultant_pl_event_schedule_htm/consultant_pl_event_schedule_en NULL.htm)
  3. Contact your ‘dated’ January Hostesses – send them a text or email with the January flyer.  Let them know you’re so excited for their party and their free shopping spree & you’ll forward the specials as soon as you get them.        save the date
  4. Organize your list of maybe’s – you’ll likely have a list of those who were a maybe or even a yes that haven’t yet booked a Jan party date OR that were thinking about signing up at any point in the past.  Get that list organized so you can contact them.
  5. Make a list of family, friends, former hostesses, top customers, etc that you think may be interested in hosting AND/OR joining your business.  Include people that were fun and interesting that you’d like to work with.  Frank list
  6. Make a list of your Open Dates, these are the dates you’d love to host a party on in January.  Remember, you’ll want to book MORE parties (even up to 2x) than you want to hold as there are always cancellations.
  7. Call, email or text all those maybes, un-dated and those you would love to party with.  A great exercise to use to make those calls is set yourself up with a 25 no’s sheet.  Here’s a link (http://www NULL.cesarlrodriguez NULL.com/100-nos-list-challenge/) to getting 100 no’s.  25 no’s would be awesome, getting 100 No’s in January would make you a rockstar!  Make sure to share your results, I’d love to hear!
  8. COUNT your stock.  Check your kit jars.  Examine your kitchen jars  GFRF
    1. Epicure doesn’t recommend you keep stock although if you do, count it. What you have in stock will reduce your taxes since you haven’t yet sold those items
    2. Do you have any beat up or almost empty jars in your kit or kitchen?  If so, make a list of what you’ll need so you’ll be ready for demo’s and cooking in 2015.  While you’re at it, remove any vaulted items from your kit, wipe it out and be ready to add in the new items once you get them.v
  9. Clean off & sort though your desk, drawers and cabinets.  chaotic desk
    1. Sort through all the papers, invoices, random odds and sods on your desk and in the drawers
    2. Make a goal to touch each paper once – Recycle it, File it, or move it to an Action needed basket
    3. Scrub down your desk top, filing cabinets, etc.  A sparkling clean work space is a welcoming space
  10. Sit in your clean office or workspace and look around.  What’s not working for you?  Do you have what you need at your fingertips? Do you have to scramble or dig to find things?  Do you need an inbox or another organization system so you’re not piling everything in one place?
  11. Examine your office supplies.  Office supplies  Do you have enough pens, paper clips, printer inks, invoices, etc.  Make a shopping list.  There is a nothing more frustrating than being part way through a job and not being able to complete it.  I have a shopping app.  I’m so not a paper person!  I love Shop shop (http://nschum NULL.de/apps/ShopShop/), and it’s FREE!  I have many categories on my app – Dollar Store, Staples, Costco, Grocery, Hardware, Health Food Store.  As soon as I think of something I need I whip out my phone and add it.  If someone else is going to do the shopping I can share the list with them via email, text or dropbox sync.  :)
  12. Tidy up your 2014 taxes.  DON’T WAIT for March or April. Do it now.  tax
    • Epicure’s website has simple tracking spreadsheets under the forms.
    • If you haven’t done anything all year that’s OK.  Sort your receipts into the various tax categories, as per the form HO has supplied.
    • NOTE:  any of the small printer receipts like what you get from the post office, grocery store, gas stn etc. will FADE.  They’ll be useless if you get audited.  You can lay them on your printer & copy them OR use a scanning app.  I have this iPhone app (https://itunes NULL.apple NULL.com/ca/app/scanner-pro-by-readdle/id333710667?mt=8) and LOVE it.  For less than $4 you have a rocking app that scans any document into a pdf file that you can export to iCloud or upload to Dropbox.  FYI, when copying or scanning don’t do it one by one.  Lay out as many as you can (from one category) on your printer or in a letter sized space if scanning with the app.  Way more efficient!
    • Pick up a stack of sorted receipts, add it up, write it down, scan or copy, and file the stack away.  File it in an envelope or file folder labelled 2014 – Office (etc).  You’re now 80% of the way to being ready for taxes!
    • Personally I do my sorting & adding while watching movies. :)
    • FYI – if you don’t have dropbox (https://db NULL.tt/7pYNcgc) or similar yet, get it.  Awesome free online storage that syncs to your computer files and photos (you choose) and you’ll never ever lose anything if your computer crashes or heaven forbid, your house burns down or floods.  Dropbox also has a free app so anywhere I am I can view any folder/document on my computer hard drive.  WOW!
  13. Prep your 2015 tax organization.  No, I don’t mean go get another shoebox!  It doesn’t have to be elaborate.  Mine is simply a file folder.  I drop everything in it and every 3 months I sort through it and organize my receipts into the categories on the spreadsheet.  I then add, scan, staple and file and hope to never have to see it again.  :)
  14. JAN 1st or close to it, record your vehicles mileage, you’ll need this to figure out your % of vehicle usage for 2014.
  15. day dreamingSit down with a lovely cup of Epicure tea and think about what you’d LOVE to see happen for your business in 2015.
    1. DREAM.  Don’t self edit.  Even if you think it’s impossible or far fetched, that’s OK.  That’s what dreaming is about.  If you want to do 50 parties and you’ve never done more than 20… that’s not relevant, write 50 down!  You want to be a leader although don’t yet have team?  Great, write it down.  Want to make $10,000 or $40,000?  Awesome, write it down.  Want to leave a day job so you’re working from home with your kids?  Fabulous, write it down.  Seriously.  WRITE IT DOWN.    Scientists managed to get a lander onto the Rosetta comet in Nov…  They launched the lander TEN years ago and it traveled 4 BILLION miles and actually landed on a moving comet.  Hello – anything is possible!  We cram ourselves into large metal tins and hurtle through the sky while watching movies and eating snacks and go from one side of the country to the other in mere hours.  Does this not boggle your mind? I am very very thankful for dreamers!
    2. SHARE.  Tell someone.  Tell your leader or a running buddy in the business.  Share what your WAD’s are (Wildly Audacious Dreams) and together you can figure out an action plan that fits your availability, lifestyle and family situation.  Maybe 2015 will be THE year that your WAD’s are reality, or maybe 2015 will be your building, learning, improving year.  Every step forward along your path to your dream is success!  With your dream & your leader or upline support you’ll be the Rosetta lander and it won’t take you 4 Billion miles and likely not 10 years to achieve it.

Okay, I said 15.  I need to add one more:

SIXTEEN:  Celebrate. I don’t celebrate enough, my friend Dana N can verify that!  As each item on the list is completed post it on the FB thread where you read this, comment on this post, call a buddy, tell your leader, do a happy dance… whatever that celebration looks like to you, do it.  It’s not silly (I know, I’m reading some of your minds right?!).  I promise you that it’s important.

celebrating cats

Here’s to your success & WAD’s,

Epicure ED, Dana K

Go for it

5min Lonely Socks Club DIY Project – for $4!

Best Pinterest project ever!   3 in 1!

  1. Lonely socks Club – the right side is for lonely socks.
    • I buy 2-3pks of matching socks when I shop, that way we have less lonely socks and this will take care of the rest.
    • I noticed a few distinctive socks seemed to get washed every week despite never bring worn, this will eliminate that.
    • I’m starting lonely socks on the right and the ones that are still on the right a long time and are unique from the rest of the socks we have, will get tossed, their friend is gone!
    • My daughter can grab mismatched socks off here (it’s her ‘elf’ look, rather than digging in my sock drawer – fingers crossed!)
  2. Lost and Found  – for the bathing suits and random clothes that get left here by kids
  3. Drying Rack for bras and other items

What you’ll need:

  • A hot glue gun and glue sticks.  FYI – Home Depot’s glue sticks are about 1/2 the price of Michaels.  :)
  • $$ Store pkg of clothespins
  • A piece of trim.  The piece I used was left over from my kitchen install.

I wanted as much of the clothes pin to touch the trim as possible, thereby having a stronger bond, so i glued 2/3 of the back of each clothespin, with the grabbing end down (obviously).  The glue sets up almost instantly, so don’t expect to move them around once you get going.  Boom, 5 mins later and you’re done!

In the first day we already matched up a couple pairs – SUCCESS!

Salted Caramel Pecan Bars (Turtles)

I make these every year and this year my friend Tracey inspired me to make them in my Perfect Petites pan.  Grand idea!

It’s important to me that I don’t use Corn Syrup because it’s GMO (the majority of corn is) and the process to make it uses toxins.  This caramel takes a little longer to set up although since I know what’s in honey it’s worth it.  :)

If you don’t have a Perfect Petites pan you could follow the steps and make ‘bites’ on parchment or your Bake & Roll on a cookie sheet.

  • Pecans – toast these in your oven or frying pan until crisp although not burned
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 Tbsp Epicure’s Vanilla
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup Whipping Cream
  • Belgian Dark Chocolate – if you can’t find chips you can chop up a block
  • Sea Salt – I used a lovely Pink Hawaiian Salt

Place sugar, vanilla and honey in your Multi Pot if you have one (I have an induction range and sure do miss my MultiPot) and let it melt together.  Let it cook on med-high until it gets a lovely dark color.  Meanwhile, heat your cream to a low simmer, place pecans in your petites pan (or in small piles on your parchment or Bake & Roll) & gather your remaining ingredients

Turtles - cream  Turtles - laid out  Turtles - ingredients close up

When your caramel is the color your like, add butter in small spoonfuls and whisk in between additions, then whisk in your hot cream.

Cook your mixture until SOFT BALL stage if you want it soft like turtles.  I like them more chewy like a hard caramel so I went to hard ball.  You can use a candy thermometer or simply use the cold water method (see below)  I left mine on 4 for about 20 mins while I cleaned the house.  I set a timer to go every 5 mins so I’d stir it.  You can cook it on a higher temp/faster if you’ll actually pay attention.

Turtles - darkening  Turtles - soft ball  Turtles - soft ball stage
Pour your caramel over the pecans (I used a scoop since I can’t use my Epicure MultiPot on my range, and a scoop is a MUCH messier method, next time I’ll transfer it all to my MP after it’s cooked!)

Drop a 6-8 chips onto each bar and let the heat of the caramel melt the chocolate.  Use a spreader or the back of a spoon to spread it around.  Drop a few pecans on top, if desired, and sprinkle on a few grains of salt.  Let set up and dig in!

Turtles - melting choc

COLD WATER METHOD

1. While your caramel is boiling, take a spoonful and drizzle it into a cup of cold water.
2. Let it cool a second
3. Pull it out of the cup and form it into a ball.  You’ll either have a gooey mess, a soft ball, a hard ball.  If you cook too long you’ll get a ‘crack’, which is way past the stage you want for a caramel and is on it’s way to a brittle.  Keep cooking and testing your caramel until it’s the stage you want it.

Peppermint Snowballs – Melt in your mouth

This is great without peppermint too and makes a simply delish whipped shortbread.

  • 1 cup room temp butter (I used my own homemade butter although store bought works great)
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 tsp Peppermint Extract (optional)

Beat butter until light and fluffy. Add remaining ingredients & whip at least 5 mins.

Drop onto a parchment or bake & roll covered cookie sheet using a small cookie scoop, or spoon out a teaspoon of dough and roll into a ball.  Bake at 325 for 8-10 mins, do not brown.

Once cooled roll in icing sugar for the snowball look.  Or don’t.  Great either way.