Raiding the larder of ideas.

What one family eats, plans to eat, dreams of eating. Plus, other food and kitchen-related stuff from the home of steak-and-potatoes, pie and fresh green beans from the garden.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Little Green Monsters

Having a ball
I had the pleasure of the company of a young gentleman, today. Ilex, the younger brother of Asteroidae, came to play here after school. And, since there was a remote chance that he would be attending a Cub Scout party this evening, we decided to prepare some treats.

Ilex is still in middle school, and therefore with limited skills in the kitchen, so we went for the quick and simple -- puffed rice treats, in Halloween style. You probably have your own favorite recipe for those, often using the big brand name products. I find that, when stuffing the faces of already-sugar-saturated boys, spending the extra cash for a big, international label isn't really all that productive.  I used stuff from discount chains.

All I needed was crisped rice cereal, mini marshmallows, butter, some green decorative sugar, cupcake decoration eyes, and a gooey red filling (ordinarily I'd have used a can of cherry pie filling to make a heart amid the gruesome squidgy blood, but we made do with the raspberry syrup I had on hand, and thus, no organs).

The process is simple, too, especially if you have a handy-dandy ice cream scoop.

Crisped Rice Little Green Monsters


3 Tablespoons butter
4 cups mini marshmallows
6 cups crisped rice cereal
1 can cherry pie filling (or other red, sticky, syrupy stuff – we used raspberry syrup, but you can also use strawberry or other red fruit jelly, thinned slightly)

cake/cupcake decorative eyes*
green decorative sugar in a wide bowl

In a saucepan or a large microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter. Add the marshmallows, heat until completely melted (stovetop, it will take a few minutes. In the microwave, no more than 90 seconds, or, until the marshmallows expand to about twice their usual size). Stir until completely mixed, then add the rice cereal. Stir again until completely mixed. 

Half-fill the scoop with the cereal mix, press it up around the sides until you have a sturdy bowl-shape. Flip it out from the scoop, then fill the cavity with a cherry and some of the syrup (or, just your red syrup, if that's what you have). 

Sorry the pic is fuzzy. You should see the stickum on the phone.
a batch of tops

Take another hemisphere of the cereal mixture, press it over the top of the filled "bowl", and carefully compress it until it holds together and makes a firm seal. 

Squidged into a nice, firm ball of naughtiness, with only slight syrup bleed-out (fixed!)
Press a pair of pre-made sugar eyes into it, then roll it in green decorative sugar.

Repeat until you have used up all the mixture.

If you have to transport them, place each one in a mini baking cup, or even a muffin tin, so they don't stick together when they travel.

Try to feel absolutely no guilt at eating something which looks at you like this:

Admit it. You find me irresistible.

For what it's worth, we made 24 treats, start to finish and boxed to go, in less than 45 minutes, even with distractions.

*If you don't have candy eyes, you may opt to cut a few mini-marshmallows into 4 or 8 pieces, stick them on, and draw pupils on them with food coloring and a toothpick.

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