Wednesday, November 14, 2007

In the Kitchen with Pampered Chef

(my well-worn & seasoned pizza stone from Pampered Chef...this gets lots of use)

Like you probably have, I've been to my share of home parties over the years, from Tupperware to Premier Jewelry, Longaberger baskets, Southern Living at Home, Arbonne, Mary Kay, to Pampered Chef. Even had a few parties along the way & they are always fun. The one home party that I really like their products the most is Pampered Chef, so last night I invited a few friends over & we had a Homemade for the Holidays party, Pampered Chef style. I'm not sold on many products, but PC has some great things for the kitchen, so I don't mind inviting people over to see them. The hostess & my friend, Stacy, shared some delicious recipes from PC with us, so I'll pass them on to you...cause I'm a good friend like that.
My friends were listening to Stacy do her sales talk on the wonderful benefits of Pampered Chef products. They really are great. I have a few things like the mini-chopper (that I had to brag that I found at a yardsale for $5), the pizza stone, bread knife, garlic press, deep dish stoneware cooker (another yardsale find, brand-new), and a few gadgets. I do love the products, as does my sister. I think she has every gadget in the catalog. These friends were from church, my old church, my empty nester friends, and neighbors. Most of them had not been to our house before, so I did the grand tour. I think they enjoyed it.
Stacy, the hostess, demonstrating the microwave cookware. Don't have any of this, but it looks really great. I have my eye on a few pieces.

Catalog on the table. I whipped up some hot spiced apple cider & even though it was a warm evening, we enjoyed sipping & of course talking.
Stacy had us all help with whipping up 2 desserts & these were yummy. This is Festive Cranberry Crunch Bark & oh. my. this stuff the best. You will keep on eating & eating & eating. I'm taking the leftovers to work. I really want to make some of this for the Holidays. It's THAT good & easy too! I am coveting this stone baking sheet. I think I'll have to get me one of those.
Pecan Butter Tarts were also delicious & yummy. Recipes to follow.
See how pretty they looked on the plates? You just break up that bark after it hardens...break and eat...simple!
So, tell me....what is YOUR favorite Pampered Chef product. Stacy went around the room and asked us all that question. I think my pizza stone (obviously) is my favorite, but I would like to have a few more things. The party went well, so I'll be able to get a few free things & a couple of half-price things. That's the advantages of having a party!
Festive Cranberry Crunch Bark
1 package (20 oz.) vanilla or chocolate flavored almond bark, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup almonds
3/4 cup sweetened dried cranberries
2 cups crisp rice cereal
Place rectangle stone into freezer at least 1 hour. Lay down parchment paper. Place almond bark into bowl & put in microwave 2-3 minutes until melted, stirring occasionally. Coarsely chop nuts with food chopper, place in microwave for 2-3 minutes until golden brown, stirring after each 30 seconds. Add cranberries, stir until combined. Stir rice cereal and 1/2 the nut mixture into melted bark. Pour bark mixture onto parchment, spreading evenly. Immediately sprinkle with remaining nut mixture; press lightly onto surface of bark. Remove baking stone from freezer, slide parchment paper on top. Let stand 7-10 minutes until bark is set. Bring edges of parchment paper up over bark & break into pieces. Eat & Enjoy!!
Pecan Butter Tarts
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup cream cheese, softened
1 cup all purpose flour
2 Tbl. butter
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup chopped pecans
For tart shells, beat butter and cream cheese in a bowl until smooth. Add flour; mix until a soft dough forms. Cover, refrigerate at least 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 350*. Shape dough into 1 inch balls. Place balls of dough into ungreased cups of a mini-muffin pan. Dip tart shaper (wooden thing from PC) in flour, press into dough to form tart shells. For filling, microwave butter in small bowl on high 30 seconds or until melted. Stir in brown sugar, egg, vanilla. Chop pecans, stir into filling.
Using small scoop, fill each tart shell with level scoop of filling. Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in pan 3 minutes, remove from pan to cooling rack. Cool completely. Yields 24 tarts.
Just thought I'd give you a sneak peak of hubby's office. The bookcase turned out fantastic. He hasn't gotten it all organized yet, so you get to see shoes & everything for now, but I'll be working on the window treatment this weekend. So far, it's turning out great. He loves it in there now!

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Michelle said...

Your PC party looked like it was a lot of fun! I've been to several PC parties, hosted a few and have a variety of PC gadgets - though the number is not THAT many. I've been wondering about that stone (if it's really worth its cost :); thanks for answering my question!

You have a lovely home, Rhoda :) The bookcase project turned out very well!

Deb said...

I've been to many Pampered Chef parties too. I think my favourite P.C. item (and one I use all the time) is a mini muffin pan which came with a delicious recipe for Swiss Cheese/Ham puffs. It's a recipe I make around this time of year for Christmas get togethers.

Alice said...

I have a pizza stone and a square baking stone that is great for oven french fries. I'm a kitchen gadget nut so I have plenty of them too. The one I use most often though is a PC heavy whisk. It is so strong and well made, not weak and too flexible like many. I probably use it every day for something.

Sandi McBride said...

Gee Rhoda, thanks for all the great FATTENING recipes, lol...I was so happy to be able to show my husband that my pizza stone looks exactly the way a well seasoned and used pizza stone should look! (I rescued it from the dishwasher the one time he offered help in the kitchen! I have refused all such offers ever since!)

Vonda said...

Thanks for the recipes, Rhoda! I too love Pampared Chef stuff. Just bought something last week. Hope you're doing great. -V

Vonda said...

Oh and my favorite PC item is the cookie sheet! Use it all the time! -V

daisy cottage said...

Oh fun Rhoda! I am positive your guests had a WONDERFUL time touring your home and enjoying the fun PC stuff! My favorite is their large rubber spatula - it gets the bowl SO clean when pouring your batter out! Love it - oh and the mini spatula - perfect for removing brownies from the pan. Thank you for sharing your fun!

yellowfarmhouse said...

Oh thank you for sharing these wonderful recipes. I'm going to make that bark tomorrow. I'm having some ladies over and it would be a great little treat before dessert, LOL. Love your blog, always inspiring.

thanks - Karen

PAT said...

Rhoda, your PC pizza stone, looks just like mine!

I have so many wonderful Pampered Chef gadgets, etc, I don't think I can decide which I like best. I like them all.


Kari said...

My sister is a big Pampered Chef fan. Me? I honestly don't get it. I prefer my role as "Pampered Eater". lol But, despite my ignorance of all things cooking, even I know that PC stuff is THE stuff to have! And I probably would have ended up buying something at your party because I would have been "high" on the glories of eating those fantabulous snacks and would have forgotten all about the fact that I CAN'T COOK! lol

joan said...

That cranberry crunch thing look too yummy and it looks easy too. I might make that for Christmas. Starbucks has something like that also. I have a few Pampered Chef items and they do hold up well.

Anonymous said...

I just love Pampered Chef products. My favorite product is probably any stoneware I own - which is a lot - I have the pizza stone, the rectangle baker, mini bakers for the toaster oven, and quite a few more. They're awesome! I need to replace my 9 x 12 baker - it broke in half after the warranty was up.

Cottage Magpie said...

I haven't tried any of those products yet, I'll have to do that. AND I'm going to have to try those tarts! YUM!
~Angela :-)

Nathansma said...

My favorite PC items are the garlic press, can opener and the chopper. They have proven to be very handy here in Jamaica.

Nunnie's Attic said...

Do you remember when I was squeeling with joy when I came home from the Indoor Flea Market with a brand new spritz cookie maker from PC for $4!! My niece just used it tonight as a matter of fact to bake cookies for their trip to SC to visit my sister.

I love the garlic press and I have the stone but I don't use it like I should. My deep dish stone and mini loaf quad stone are on top of my list too! I have the cutting boards for meats - but they kinda warped a little. Any suggestion on what I could do to prevent them from warping any more? It says they're dishwasher safe.


cityfarmer said...

Never mind me...I don't do well at home parties...always feel so obligated to spend a bunch of $$$$

Rosemary said...

Sounds like fun!!
That recipe sounds so good. I will try it for sure.
Your bookcase turned out really good. Can't wait to see the whole office.

Steph said...

I am not a fan of lots of little gadgets, but I do love the PC measure-all cup. I have had it for years and I love it especially when measuring something like peanut butter!
The bookcase looks good!

Jen said...

You can absolutely have the most wonderful times with girlfriends whil having a shop-at-home party. Pampered Chef definitely tops my list for one to host. I actually enjoy the cookbooks they offer. Some of my favorite easy recipes come from these.

Your bookcase looks really nice. I enjoy the visits through your home. Have a wonderful week.

Susie Q said...

Love PC and I have not been to a party in awhile! Wish I could have been at yours! LOVE, LOVE the pizza stone as you do.

I have lots of their wonderful little gadgets and love them all.

Just trying to play catch up and loving seeing all the posting I have missed!!


Sher's Creative Expressions said...

Rhoda, thanks for sharing these recipes. I think Pampered Chef parties are fun. I've also been to the new Taste of Home - home parties and they are also great. Home decor items as well as kitchen items.

Your husband's bookcase turned out great. Good job!



He Knows My Name said...

hi rhoda. i tagged you :) see my blog.


Cottage Contessa said...

Sounds like a good time was had by all! I'll bet there was a lot of oohhh-ing and aaahh-ing over your home as you took everyone on the house tour! Can't wait to see the finished office photo's!
Amanda (aka Cottage Contessa)

Jacki said...

Can't comment on the Pampered Chef stuff because I'm not much of a cook. But I love your dining room, such rich colors. Esp. the plates on the wall.


Diane said...

Looks like everyone had a great time. Thanks for sharing the recipes. Diane

Lynn@ The Vintage Nest said...

Hi Rhoda, I was delighted you visited my blog. I see you are a girl after my own heart with antiquing and thrifting and finding a wonderful bargain. Really, I think my husband has no idea how much money I have saved him over the years with my bargain hunting. It's so much fun. I enjoyed reading your blog and hope you will visit often. ~ Lynn

Esther Sunday said...

By far - the chopper!!!!! Love it!!
Can't wait to see the end result of the hubber's office.

the feathered nest said...

I must be one of the few people who has never even seen any PC products! I've heard of them (esp the pizza stone). That cranberry crunch things looks dangerously good!


Mary Isabella said...

I have never had a p. C. party. But have recieved some of their things as gifts. I do have the pizzia stone. Have a great night. Mary

justabeachkat said...

I have the pizza stone too. Love it. Those parties are fun. Thanks for the recipes.

Looking forward to seeing you again soon.


Decorating Queen said...

Hey Rhoda! Its been a while since I posted, but I have been visiting. :-) Oh my round pizza stone looks just like yours. I just love mine. I make everything on it from pizza to cookies and biscuits. I have to say that, that is my favorite. Hugs, Nicole from Texas!!

linda t said...

How funny that you should mention PC, cuz I just commented on another blog that her dark, seasoned PC pizza stone looked just like mine!
I have hosted a ton of PC parties over the years, but almost all my stone was found at thrift stores!!! And it's real PC stone, for a dollar or two! And brand new! They must not like it cuz it comes very rough when new, but if they would just use it, in no time it is smooth and seasoned. Love the stone to make pie in... found for 50 cents!
Thanks for the great recipes too!

Maureen said...

Hi Rhodie. Stopping off here at your fun blog today and almost missed this one! The bark looks delicious, and hey, cranberries contain anti-oxidents, right? I am a fan of PC too and have many of their items. Somewhere,I have a brand-new PC pizza stone that I put aside because I already had an older, more cumbersome one from William Sonoma from years back that was in use, plus I lost the little holding rack for the PC stone. The PC stone seems more user-friendly. I love their corer, and use all the garnishing tools!

PamperingBeki said...

Oh Miss Rhoda, I was a PC consultant for 5 years. I LOVE their products! You really must get that large stone cookie sheet. That's my favorite item, I think.

Too bad I don't live closer because now I put on a mean home jewelry party. ;-) Haha!! I actually had to quit PC when my jewelry business took off so much, but I still do love their things and think they're worth every penny.

KJ said...

I have an entire kitchen full of Pampered Chef! There really have not been many items that I have been disappointed with. Mostly, I love 95% of what I have purchased! The pizza stone that you displayed looks just like mine: loved and well used!


KJ said...


I am a kitchen gadget nut, too!