Easy Peasy Butter Toffee!!!

I love butter toffee candy and if you do also, you won't believe how easy it is to make!  It's just a few simple ingredients and very little time!!!  This would be great for gift giving!!!  The trickiest part of this is not burning the toffee mixture!!!    Here is what you will need:

2 cups butter (do not use margarine)
2 cups sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla flavoring
1  1/2 cups chopped pecans or walnuts
2 cups milk chocolate or semi sweet chocolate  chips

Cover a large sheet pan with nonstick foil or parchment paper.  Sprinkle evenly with the chopped nuts.

In a heavy, large sauce pan melt the butter, sugar and salt together over medium heat.  Bring to a boil stirring constantly.  After it comes to a boil turn the heat down just a little so it doesn't burn and cook, stirring constantly until it turns the color of peanut butter.  If you are using a candy thermometer it should reach 285 degrees.  Once it thickens and turns the color of peanut butter, remove from heat and add the vanilla flavoring.   This will burn quickly at this stage so be sure to get it off the heat now.   Pour mixture over the chopped nuts and spread it out evenly.  It might seem thin, but that is ok.

Let it sit for a minute or two and then sprinkle the chocolate chips even over the top. 
 Let the chips set for about 5 minutes to get soft.  

When they are melted, spread the chips like icing with knife.   Then place in the refrigerator and chill for about an hour or two.  Then peel it off the paper and break into pieces.  Store in an airtight container! 

It doesn't get much easier or more delicious than this!!! 

Hissy Fit Dip!!!

You might be thinking how in the world did this dip get this name?  Well, the story goes, that someone made this dip and served it at an SEC football tailgating party and it was a huge hit!!!  It was such a hit that a certain southern belle, didn't get any and she threw one heck of a 'hissy fit' about it!!!   So from then on, this yummy dip has been called "Hissy Fit Dip"!!!   This really is a good dip for game day, tailgating or holiday parties!!!   Here is what you need:

1 lb. breakfast sausage
1/4 cup sweet onion, diced fine
8 oz. cream cheese, cubed
8 oz. Velveeta cheese, cubed
1 cup shredded Monterrey Jack or Muenster cheese
16 oz. sour cream (do not use light)
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. soy sauce
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. Cajun seasoning (I used Tony Cachere)
1/4 tsp. Curry powder (optional)
dash of hot sauce to taste 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large skillet brown the sausage and add the onion while browning and cook until translucent.  Turn heat to low once browned and add all of the other ingredients and stir until it is all well incorporated.

Spray a 2 quart casserole dish with nonstick spray and pour the mixture in.  Place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes.   If this starts to brown too much on top, cover the top loosely with a sheet of foil.   When it's hot and bubbly remove from over and serve!!!  

I like this served with Frito scoops or tortilla chips, but you can also serve with crackers or veggies!!!   This disappears fast!!! 

Slow Cooker Spicy Italian Beef

This is not exactly a southern recipe, but it is one my family favorites.  I have tried around a half dozen different recipes for Italian beef that call for different cooking methods,  but this recipe gets the best results and is a mixture of several of the best recipes with a few additions of my own.  It's so simple to throw in the slow cooker the night before.

Here is what you will need for this:

4-6 lb chuck roast
1 envelope au jus mix
1 envelope Italian dressing mix
1 envelope onion soup mix
1/2 jar peperoncini pepper rings with juices
1 cup water
1 Tsp. Tony Chachere's Cajun Seasoning
Swiss or provolone cheese slices
Hoagie rolls

Sprinkle roast with pepper, salt and garlic salt on each side then sear and brown on both sides in about 1 Tbs of oil and 1Tbs of butter.  Do this in a nonstick skillet.  Once browned place in slow cooker sprayed with nonstick cooking spray for easy cleanup.  Deglaze the skillet with a cup of water over high high and pour this over the roast.  You can skip this step and just put the roast right in the slow cooker without browning it, but I think it does enhance the flavor.

Sprinkle the Tony Chachere's seasonings over the roast, all three of the envelopes of seasoning mixes, and some additional pepper.

Add a 1/2 jar of the peperoncini peppers and about 1/2 of the pepper juice over top.  Pour 1 cup water around the edges of the roast.

After 8 - 10 hours on low or overnight, remove the meat and shred.  return to slow cooker in the spicy au jus. 

Now it's time to make the sandwiches.  Split your hoagie buns and I like to toast them slightly in the oven.  They will hold up to the juices of the sandwich better.

Now pile on the meat and cheese.  Run back in the oven until the cheese melts or in the microwave for about 30 seconds.
If you like extra spice add more peperoncini rings.  You can also serve some of the au jus on the side for dipping!!!
Spicy Italian Beef right here in southern Kentucky!

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