A Knife-and-Fork Style Candy Bar + a Giveaway!

Hello Monday!

I had a great weekend...but how is it over?! Yesterday I finally saw The Hunger Games! Though some parts of the book were not quite adapted how I had hoped (or left out completely?), overall I really, really loved this film. I thought it was a really great adaptation of a fantastic book. And I adored the cast.

What did you think of the movie?

I'm really excited today because not only am I talking about decadent chocolate candy bars, but I also have a great giveaway! So happy Monday to you!

When the Main Street Bakery & Cafe sent me one of their signature candy bar desserts to sample (along with some other yummy goodies), of course I said a big, fat yes, thank you!

This 'candy bar' is not your average drug store chocolate bar. It's a thick, rich candy bar that is to be eaten with a knife and fork...kind of like the candy bar that Mr. Pitt dawned in an old Seinfeld episode. Remember that one? And you KNOW I love a pop culture food reference! I was smitten before I even opened the package.

In case you didn't know, you may see my Dexter cupcakes, Giants Superbowl cupcakes, and all of my ideas for a True Blood theme party.

Anyhow.

I have to admit that I'm not really a chocolate-eater. Sure I love a good chocolate cake, but typically not totally interested in chocolate candy or anything too 'chocolatey'. But this candy bar? Ooooh my.

 

Layers of chocolate, ganache, caramel, krispies and nuts make this a decadent treat that can't just be eaten by one person. It's so rich that it's the perfect dessert to share.

The buttery, soft caramel is the stuff dreams are made of.

Oh and my absolute favorite part? Some sea salt crystals sprinkled on the top. You know I love a sweet and salty combo. And I loved that the little salty flakes actually crunched when I bit into them. Yum.

Though it's not exactly inexpensive ($4 per bar), I really enjoyed this candy bar, especially since it could easily be shared for two people. Main Street Bakery & Cafe is located in Port Washington, NY but fortunately for all of you not in the area...they are generously offering up a box of 6 candy bars to one lucky TAA reader! Now doesn't that make your Monday just a little better?!

To enter the giveaway do one or all of the following for extra entries:

1. Leave a comment below telling me your favorite candy bar of all time.

2. Like The Avid Appetite on Facebook and leave a comment telling me you did (or if you already do!)

3. Follow @theavidappetite on Twitter and leave a comment telling me you did (or if you already do!)

4. Head over to The Main Street Bakery's website and leave yet another comment telling me what other goodies strike your fancy.

5. Like Main Street Bakery & Cafe of Port Washington on Faacebook and leave yet another comment telling me you did.

The giveaway is open until Tuesday 4/3 at midnight. I'll announce the winner on Wednesday and have your goodies shipped out to you just in time for Easter...er, you know, in case you are interested in sharing your winnings ;) Sorry, this giveaway is only open to the continental US.

Hope you have some chocolately daydreams today, friends! Have a great week!

Cookiepalooza 2011 + A Holiday Goodies Giveaway!

Happy Monday everyone! I am seriously struggling this morning! I had a fantastic weekend, starting with an 8 hour baking session at my parents' house on Saturday. I spent the day with my mom, sister Kimberly and cousin Veronica making a big ol' mess in my mom's kitchen and whipping up a quick 10 batches of holiday cookies (all different kinds, I might add).

Needless to say, I'm still a bit exhausted today but I can't wait to share all the gorgeous photos with you! And to celebrate the most wonderful time of the year, I'm giving away a whole box of homemade holiday goodies, made by yours truly :) I hope you will all enter!! Head to the bottom of this post for entry details. Meanwhile....feast your eyes on some serious cookie porn!

We always have our favorite holiday staples in the baking mix, but this year, we added a whole bunch of new ones as well. One of my favorites is the chocolate cherry kisses. I think they are so gorgeously pink and delicious to boot.

 

Other classics on the list included raspberry-filled thumbprints (my favorite...they scream Christmas time to me!) and eggnog snickerdoodles...

We also added a lot of new ones, like cherry cheesecake cookies...

...and black and white cookies (wowza!)

...and peanut butter blossoms, filled with a chocolatey Hershey's Kiss...

We also whipped up these gorgeous cocoa thumbprints (which I think turned out to be the prettiest of the bunch!

The versions not pictured include salted chocolate caramel shortbread, seven layer Italian rainbow cookies and our classic butter cookie cutouts! It was such a fun day and by the end, my mom's kitchen looked like this:

...and even this little lady was all tuckered out...

And now to the good part.

****The giveaway!****

How it Works:

What:

A box of homemade holiday goodies (and some other surprises), including a batch of the cocoa thumbprints, homemade marshmallows and more!

 

When:

The giveaway opens... right now! It will close on Wednesday 12/14 @ Midnight, Eastern Standard Time.

How to Win:

Simply leave me a comment below and tell me what your favorite cookie is! This giveaway is open to readers, bloggers, family and friends. Don't be shy! Even if you don't celebrate Christmas...who doesn't love cookies?!

The winner will be announced on Thursday 12/15 and the goodies will ship out to you via Priority Mail on Monday 12/19, so that you will have them in time for Christmas!

*Sorry, but this giveaway is only open to US residents.

So tell me...what's your favorite kind of cookie?!

Sweet Corn & Zucchini Hash + an Animal Lover's Giveaway!

I'm hosting a great giveaway today...scroll down to find out about it and enter!

I have arrived in Las Vegas! I'm blogging from my king-sized bed (which feels very empty without Shaun to share it with!) and my computer is reading 2:51AM Eastern Standard Time, though it's only 11:51PM here. But it feels like almost 3AM for sure! I landed around 3PM, checked into the MGM Grand and darted right out to meet my cousin Mona (who lives in Vegas!) for an early dinner at Border Grill (super duper yum!). Immediately following, I went to a cocktail party followed by another dinner at Strip Steak (I did more of a tasting off of other people's plates for this one). So far, a successful trip!

Meanwhile, I have a recipe to share with you. I threw this together so quickly on Friday evening from ingredients that were on the verge of going bad in my refrigerator. And I'm soooo happy that I did. It's so easy, so fast and so delicious. Seriously. 

I am definitely rocking a full-blown, four alarm fresh corn obsession right now. Causes of said obsession may include a) my craving for all things summer, b) its ease of use and abundance, and/or c) its simplistic deliciousness. It's probably all of the above. 

 

This is one of the easiest side dishes I've ever whipped up. I'm fairly positive that though this dish serves around 2-3 people, I could easily devour this entire thing on my own. And I just might have.
Sweet Corn & Zucchini Hash
3 ears of fresh corn, husked & kernels removed
1 zucchini, diced
2 tbsp parmesean cheese
1 tbsp olive oil
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat and add the zucchini. Season with salt and pepper and cook for about 3 minutes. 
Add the corn (with kernels cut off of the cob). Cook until the corn is tender and toasted, turning a bit brown from carmelization.
Mix in the parmesean cheese. Devour immediately.

 

The Giveaway!

Ok, now for the really fun part. I'm so psyched today because I love hosting giveaways on TAA. And what makes this one even more awesome is that it's sponsored by my talented artist cousin, Alyson! With a love for and specialty in animal art, Alyson has generously offered to giveaway a custom pet portrait to a very lucky TAA reader! And if you don't have a pet? Pick out a favorite animal or childhood pet! I absolutely love this idea, and I would be all over this if I had a pet of my own. Alyson has provided some samples here, but you can see her full gallery at Alyson's Animal Art.



Here's the rundown:
What your playing for: One custom 9x12 pet portrait in your choice of media (colored pencil, pencil, soft pastel, oil pastel or conti)

To enter: Simply leave a comment telling Alyson and me something fun about your pet/your family's pet or your favorite animal

When: It starts now!

Ends: Friday 6/17 at noon EST

Logistics: This giveaway is open to US and Canada residents only

For extra entries:

1) Follow me on Twitter (@theavidappetite) and Tweet this giveaway, leaving me a separate comment telling me that you did so.

2) Like The Avid Appetite on Facebook and leave me yet another separate comment telling me that you did so (or if you already do, leave a separate comment with that too!).


A winner will be selected at random and announced on Friday evening. Once a winner is selected, please email me at theavidappetite@gmail.com to discuss the logistics of your prize...be sure to have your favorite animal photo ready!

I hope you'll enter to win this one of a kind, custom prize!!