Food & Party Snacks  &  Desserts

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    A video just went up on Reddit that's stirring up controversy. It's called, "My drunk wife makes grilled cheeses." Except the woman making grilled cheeses while slugging rosé is not actually the poster's wife. She's single comic Ashley Bez. And those grilled cheeses? They're fake, too. But that's the really interesting part. Sit up and pay attention, because grilled cheese just got reinvented by Ms. Bez. If I didn't know better, I'd think this recipe was created by a kindergartner, it's so weirdly brilliant. You have to see this.

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    My husband loves two things -- peanut butter and dark chocolate. I don't blame him. The sweet and salty combo is a winner. And my children go gaga for the taste as well! These Chocolate Peanut Butter Blossoms are not only easy to whip up, but the batter freezes well enough to make a second batch later on in the week. Shhh ... don't tell him, but I'm going to make him a batch of these cookies for his birthday! That is, if the kids don't get to them first. 

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    If you're anything like me then you might have some kids at home complaining about being hot and bored this summer! I'm always open to trying out new activities I see, and when "ice cream in a bag" pins started making their way through my Pinterest stream, I knew my children would love to try it!

    To start, I gathered heavy cream, vanilla, milk, and sugar. I added those ingredients to a small Ziploc bag, put that into a larger Ziploc bag, and covered it with ice and rock salt.

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    Every once in a while, you may want to go beyond your ordinary picnic. You want to pack a gorgeous picnic -- the kind you see in magazine spreads. A picnic so ingenious and pretty, total strangers will pin photos of it to Pinterest. (Because you Instagrammed it, shamelessly.) Not that that's the main purpose for this meal! Of course you're doing it for your own enjoyment and the pleasure of your picnic companions. But you know what I mean. You open that basket and everyone gasps: Ooh! Ahh!

    Here are 12 ideas for a beautiful, Pinterest-worthy picnic. They're not all the most practical tips -- that's not what this is about. For once, we're putting form just a wee bit ahead of function. But at least these are do-able ideas.

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    Lately I've got ice cream on my mind. Not just ice cream, but ice cream concoctions -- sundaes, sandwiches, you name it. I've been craving decadent ice cream desserts like crazy lately. So I've been looking around the web for sundae inspiration. AND! I just tapped Jeni Britton Bauer, founder and chef of Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams, for her sundae-building tips. Bauer is also the author of the insanely yummy cookbook Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream Desserts. And all I can say is: We are about to change our ice cream sundae game in a major way.

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    I think we can all agree on this one thing about ice cream: It melts when it's warm outside. Heck, it melts in a slightly chilly room. So when Christie Watson discovered her son's ice cream sandwich hadn't melted (much) after sitting in 80-degree weather for 12 hours, she was naturally suspicious. After checking the box of Walmart Great Value bars to verify that they are made with real ice cream, she tried a little experiment. She left another bar out overnight. Sure enough, that one didn't melt, either. "I thought to myself: What am I feeding to my children?" Watson said.

    What's the deal with these ice cream bars?

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    Whether you're celebrating a birthday or simply looking for a show-stopping summertime dessert, ice cream cake is always a crowd-pleaser.

    Not only is this cool and creamy homemade confection a hit with all ages, it costs approximately a third of what a store-bought cake will set you back, and it can be prepared in 10 minutes or less.  

    Another bonus: Since you're the chef, feel free to mix and match your favorite flavors and toppings. Then sit back and enjoy the rave reviews!

    Note: The most challenging thing about this recipe is not going back for seconds (or thirds!).

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    So you're in your den watching a bunch of hot men run around in little, tight-fitting shorts (I'm talking about the World Cup of course) when you eagerly unwrap your chocolate bar only to discover -- OMG, BALLS! Literally, on you candy. It would appear that the white chocolate Milkybar has a penis-like shape imprinted on it. And everyone's been oblivious until this week, when London lawyer Robin Jacobs made the discovery and was overcome with strong feelings.

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    You've seen it on elaborate cakes, and you've seen it create fantasies on the reality TV show Cake Boss: It's fondant, the pliable, dough-like decorative cake icing. When you cover a cake with this confection it gives you a beautifully smooth surface to decorate. Usually it's made of gelatin and food-grade glycerine (a kind of sugar), and it's most often sold as "rolled fondant" in soft blocks which you knead and roll out. You can buy it white and color it yourself, or you can buy colored fondant. Here's how to use fondant the most basic way, to cover a whole cake in a single color.

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    Happy July 11. It's a certain Stir staffer's birthday AND it's Free Slurpee Day at 7-Eleven stores! Because 7/11, that's why. Today the convenience store is giving away a free small Slurpee in any flavor to its customers. But wait, there's more! 7-Eleven is having a whole series of freebies for a week. Read on to get all the icy-cool, delicious details.

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