Mandarin Orange Fudge Cookie Salad

Once Easter Sunday arrives, it always feels like spring is officially here.  I love Easter and all that comes with it -celebrating that Jesus has Risen through our beautiful Mass at church followed by festivities with family to rejoice on this beautiful day.

We have a few traditions we have started with T.J. over his first three Easters.  On Good Friday I always like to do some type of baking project that he can be “involved” in.  This was the first year he was actually able to participate in some capacity which was so much fun!  Recently, on Pinterest, I saw a cute idea for Rice Krispies Eggs with a hidden surprise inside.  So on Friday, T.J. and I decided to give this idea a try in our own kitchen.

They were so easy and such a cute idea.  We simply made our Rice Krispies Treats as usual.  Then we filled our plastic Easter eggs with the Rice Krispies mix and hollowed out a little hole on each side of the egg.  Then we placed three chocolate candies in each and put the eggs together.  We let them stand for 20 minutes before taking the plastic egg off.  I then wrapped them in plastic wrap and placed them in an Easter basket.  It would be really cute to wrap them in pastel colored plastic wrap, use food coloring in the Rice Krispies mix, or decorate the outside with treats or sprinkles.  So fun!

PicMonkey Collage eggs

On Saturday we always dye Easter Eggs in preparation for Sunday.  Again, this was the first year T.J. really enjoyed it. He did a great job and the eggs turned out wonderful…the way they looked anyway 🙂  As I’ve stated before, I’m the first to admit that I make plenty of mistakes in the kitchen.  I’m a work in progress.  I hard boil eggs on almost a weekly basis and have never had a problem.  Well, this time, forgetting that I was doing more eggs than usual and using a big pan, I boiled them and let them sit in their covered pan for the same amount of time I do with six eggs in a smaller pan.  When we dyed them they appeared fine.  It wasn’t until the next day when we cracked them open to enjoy, that we realized they were half-cooked 😦  A little disappointing.  So we had to throw them all away.  I’m thinking T.J. might not let me off the hook as easily if I make the same mistake again next year…so believe me, I’ll take extra care not to let it happen.  We made up for the lack of eggs by eating more candy!

PicMonkey Collage dying eggs

T.J. did an awesome job and the Easter Bunny was pleased with his work. Luckily, the fact that the eggs were not cooked through didn’t affect our dying activities!

Following church and our Easter Egg hunt, we had a few family members over for coffee and Bloody Mary’s before heading to my grandma’s house for Easter lunch.  She lives in a small town only about 10 minutes away from our house so it was an easy commute.  The tradition for holiday meals at my grandma’s house is to have a potluck style meal.  This year I decided to take a favorite recipe my mother-in-law makes for most holidays we spend with them – Mandarin Orange Fudge Cookie Salad.  This was the first time I made this, and I couldn’t believe how easy it was…in fact, I felt a little guilty about how easy my contribution to the meal was to put together.  This will definitely be something I repeat in the future and probably several times throughout the summer!

Here is what you’ll need on your grocery list:

**This recipe makes enough to serve a small crowd.  Probably 8-10 people.  You can easily double, triple, etc. the recipe for larger crowds.**

2 small packages Vanilla Instant Pudding

2 cups Buttermilk

1 (12 oz) tub Cool Whip

1 (15 oz) can Mandarin Oranges

8 crushed Fudge Stripe Cookies

Directions:

1. Pour all ingredients into a large mixing bowl.  Stir gently until well combined.

2. Transfer to serving bowl, cover, and refrigerate overnight.

3. Serve and Enjoy!  It’s that simple!

IMG_20140424_172558

I hope everyone had a very Happy Easter!  This is a dish you should be able to enjoy at many potlucks and picnics throughout the upcoming spring and summer months.  It works great as a side or as a dessert.  Think how cute this would be served in parfait glasses and garnished with an orange and a cherry!

Until next time…

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