Thursday, May 5, 2011

Rosemary Rice Krispie Treats, and a Weekend at Camp



Last weekend I was able to get out of town and head up to the San Bernardino Mountains for a few days.  

I attended Camp Blogaway - a getaway weekend for food bloggers, recipe developers, and photographers that is organized by the lovely Patti Londre.  The weekend serves as our time to enrich our sense of community and connect with one another and learn ways to improve and enhance what we love to do.  I truly enjoyed making new friends, catching up with old ones, and being surrounded by people who love and appreciate food (and all that good food stands for) as much as I do.  It was food for my soul (pun intended) to be in an environment surrounded by genuine people that have true passion.  And of course, the blue skies and clean air didn't hurt.          



Anytime I go out to the mountains in So Cal I always feel like I am going home; the real 'forests,' green grass, and birds chirping take me back to the Midwest where I grew up.  I definitely felt like that this past weekend, but I also felt a different sense of belonging that you can only really get when you are with a group of caring, like-minded people.  That sense of family was even further reinforced when we listened to Cheryl and Susan talk about their community of readers, and about how our online families extended beyond the connections we made with each other at camp to include each one of YOU that faithfully reads our blogs.  And for that I want to say thank you - for being part of my family - for supporting me when life is hard, for laughing with me when life is amazing, and for always appreciating good food and good friends.     




I caught up with some old friends at Camp Blogaway, but also met lots of new ones - I can't possibly list them all here but I definitely want to make sure you know who they are and to introduce you to some fantastic new blogs.  Check out the Camp Blogaway website for a full list of attendees, and also to see an awesome slideshow of photos from the weekend (don't miss the photo of me wearing my designated camp shirt - a cartoon of dancing chocolate, graham crackers, and marshmallows saying 'Let's Have S'more Fun.'  Yeah, it's amazing.).  I didn't get a whole lot of photos of the weekend (even I need a break) but the collection of pictures in the slideshow really captures it all.  Also, within the next week I will be updating my blogroll to include these new blogs I think you will love.

Julie of Savvy Eats, and Kristina of Better Recipes.

Myself and Quyen of Kitchen Runway

After spending the weekend at camp with my new 'family,' I came home feeling nostalgic and dreaming of comforting sweet treats.  I swear I don't have an obsession with marshmallows (despite the fact that I make them from scratch and own t-shirts adorned with them) but I seriously could not stop thinking about rice krispie treats.  I blame Cathy of Gastronomy for this fixation, because I tried her Rosemary Rice Krispie Treats earlier this year at a photography workshop and I was blown away.  They have been on my 'to-do' list ever since then, and a weekend of camping brought them to the forefront of my mind.   

Finely minced fresh rosemary. 

Melting marshmallows with rosemary and butter.  *Sigh.*

For those of you that have never made rice krispie treats before, they are a simple (but sinful) mixture of butter, marshmallows, and popped rice cereal.  Adding a little rosemary and lavender takes them to a more 'adult' place, but they are still a child's treat at heart.  


Now I would be remiss if I didn't tell you that making rice krispie treats can be a bit messy.  See those sticky threads of marshmallow up there?  If you are not careful you can get krispie-marshmallow-goodness just about everywhere.  And, that is exactly what I did.  

I thought I didn't have any parchment to press the rice krispies into the the pan, so I resorted to trying to press them down with aluminum foil - bad choice.  When I tried to pull the aluminum foil off, the marshmallow stuck and I proceeded to get it all over the table, my hands, and my hair (not sure how that last part happened, but well, it did).  And even with all that, these Rosemary Rice Krispie Treats still turned out fantastically.



Now if you are still skeptical and think you might be 'above' eating a childish Rice Krispie treat, well, think again.  And when you do, remember how much you enjoyed eating them when you were a kid.  Remember how you could barely wait for them to cool before you begged your mom to cut you a piece?   She handed you one perfect gooey square, and your tiny mouth broke into a huge grin.  A crunchy bite of that sweet treat was the high point of your day, in fact, the high point of your week.  They were the best, and mom was the best for making them for you.   

Now imagine making them a bit more sophisticated by adding rosemary and lavender, and you have the perfect taste for big kids and families alike.  Maybe you might even switch the roles around and make these for your mom this Mother's Day, just to remind her how much you appreciated those simple, happy days as a child. 


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Rosemary Rice Krispie Treats

Remember eating rice krispie treats as a kid?  These are the stuff of childhood memories, all grown up.  The vanilla and marshmallow plus the extra lavender and rosemary make these smell intoxicating, and the crunch is irresistible.  This recipe is uber simple, just be wary of sticky melted marshmallows.   

1 stick unsalted butter
1 tbsp finely minced fresh rosemary, add more if you like
1 bag (16 oz) of marshmallows, or make your own
1/4 tsp lavender extract (optional)
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 box (12 oz) Rice Krispies, or crisped rice cereal

Prepare a 9 x 13 inch baking pan by spraying with non-stick cooking spray or coating with extra softened butter.  Set aside.

In a large stockpot, melt the butter over medium heat.  Add the rosemary and stir to mix, then add the marshmallows and continue to stir over medium heat until the marshmallows have completely melted.  Stir in the lavender extract, vanilla extract, and salt, then add the Rice Krispies and stir until everything is well coated and mixed evenly.  

Transfer the entire mixture to the prepared 9 x 13 inch baking pan - this step might be messy and remember everything is still hot!  Once everything is in the pan, use a sheet of parchment paper or well-oiled hands to press down on the top of the rice krispies to smooth out and level off.  (If you like your rice krispie treats very dense, press down a lot at this step; if you like them to be more airy and less compact, then only press gently on the top of the pan.)  

Let the pan cool for at least one hour or longer, then slice into squares and serve immediately.  Rosemary Rice Krispie Treats will keep in an airtight container for at least 4-5 days, but are best on the day they are made.  

42 comments:

  1. It seems that you had a great time there! What a lovely event.

    Those are original treats! So pretty and perfectly shaped.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  2. Oh..I love this easy peasy rice Kirspies..never knew it could be a child's play (though need to save my hair first:)
    How lucky to have met friends and fellow bloggers, and getting a chance to unwind in the wild.
    I have rice crispies and marshmallows waiting for me for this wonderful transformation. Thanks for such wonderful post.

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  3. Absoolutely brilliant! As always, your pics are stunning. I think next year at the Camp, you should teach a photography class. Seriously!

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  4. The photo of you in your s'mores shirt with a s'more is brilliant.

    I keep meaning to make graham crackers and haven't done it yet. I think it's time.

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  5. Oh I would so like one of these right now, I can almost smell the rosemary!
    Loved seeing you this weekend! Wish we talked more. We can't let so much time pass before we see each other again!

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  6. Beautiful rice krispie treats! Though I must admit - gasp - I'm not huge on marshmallows ... (promise to forgive me?)

    I'm oh so jealous of your Camp Blogaway experience!

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  7. this is a great adult snack :D

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  8. I love RKTs and have a half dozen versions and varieties on my site that use special k, too. i mean, i am into them! haha!

    rosemary, that's an adult twist. awesome.

    Camp BA. I am soooo mad at myself I didnt just go. I could have gone but life and planning got away from me. NExt year!

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  9. You'd think I'd experiment more with rosemary; I'm re-inspired. I know I'd get more 'cause the kids wouldn't go for it! Wish I could go to a blogger event; sounds like good fun and learning all rolled into one.

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  10. How fun!! What a treat to meet new friends!! I love these grown-up rice krispie treats.

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  11. How fabulous!!! A grown up Rice Krispie Treat!! At least that will be my excuse for making these beauties :) And can I tell you how jealous I am that you went to blogger camp?????! Lucky you!

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  12. What a lovely and unexpected flavor for rice krispy treats! Sounds like camp was a blast, hope to attend next time.

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  13. I do not fall in the category of thinking I'm "above" eating rice krispie treats! Yum, what a unique spin on a childhood treat. Thanks for sharing about the camp, too. Sounds amazing!!

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  14. I'm so jealous you got to go to Camp Blogaway! Hopefully one of these years I'll manage to save up enough to go.
    Love the grownup twist on these rice krispie treats... though, being a kid at heart, I'm pretty sure I'll never think the classic non-rosemary version is "too childish" for me. :)

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  15. These look so interesting and delicious! I've been making rice krispie treats lately with brown rice puffed cereal. That makes them feel a little healthier :) But I love your addition of rosemary and lavendar to make them more adult!

    Thanks for sharing about your experience. Sounds like fun :D

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  16. Love the melting marshmallows pic. Those are perfect crispy treat squares, they look so good!

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  17. Camp Blogaway sounds like an amazing time. Your pictures are also amazing, everything looks great!! Love the grown up twist on these too!

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  18. it was lovely to meet you too... now that's creativity with the krisipie treats- who woulda thunk?

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  19. The recipe looks lovely and the camp sounds amazing!

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  20. Amanda, the camp should have lasted for at least ten days to allow us to talk to everybody:)
    It was great to finally meet you in person and I am sure that we'll see each other soon.
    The woods of SoCal remind me of my home in Serbia and our cottage in the mountains where we went skiing, so I can relate to you:)
    A great recap!
    Would you believe me if I told you that I have never tried Rice Crispy Treats in my life? How did you manage to make such clean cuts? This looks simple enough for my girls - just have to remember to by rice cereal:)
    Great photos, as usual.

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  21. Hi Roomie! I have to say that's a pretty cute picture of us...even if my head is big! Love the recipe and love Cathy!! She's such a doll! I can't wait to try these...there's just something about rice crispy treats that are so comforting!

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  22. Oh wow. Just, oh wow. I want to drop everything right now so I can go home and make this. Sweet and savory Rice Krispy Treats; I think I'm in love.

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  23. These are a super sophisticated take on a childhood favorite. I've added herbs to blondies and shortbread before, but never thought to do so with Rice Krispie treats, of all things. Brilliant idea!

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  24. Three cheers for rosemary rice krispy treats!! One of these days, I'm gonna make my own marshmallows ;-)

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  25. This is hands-down the best rice krispie treat recipe I've ever seen, and the best food blog name I've ever seen. Cilantropist? Genius.

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  26. Rice Krispy Treats are one of my favorite "kid treats" can't wait to try your herb variation, great idea!

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  27. Wow, what a fabulous experience that must have been! I am sure you met so many new & interesting bloggers - love it:) I cannot wait to try this recipe - you did a fabulous job of describing the childhood glory that is the Rice Krispie treat! Thanks for sharing:)

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  28. I love this grown up version of rice krispie treats! A must try! I'm so jealous you went to the Camp. I'm sure it was a blast.

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  29. Hi There, The rice crispies are looking exciting and a great snack to nibble on the camps. I haven't tried this recipe ever but wud love to give it a shot. Saving this recipe of urs and wud love to give ur version a try on the coming weekend. Have a great day….Sonia !!!

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  30. Wishing I was at the event. Great blog. Thanks for sharing! Congrats on winning the award.

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  31. My next door neighbor has 2 huge rosemary bushes. She generously allows me to cut as much as I want whenever I want. We are always looking for new things to do with the rosemary because we both love it so much. I can't wait to share these with her.

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  32. Hey look, it's the back of my head! (I must have been listening intently...) It was great meeting you at camp and I am really excited to get to know you better through your blog. This updated and elegant recipe for rice krispie treats is so interesting! I love putting herbs into sweet dishes so I am sure they are phenomenal.

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  33. What a fantastic idea! I don't see how you could go wrong with adding rosemary to these treats... the flavors are just perfect!

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  34. Sounds like such a fun time at Camp Blogaway. There are always so many ideas to glean from other people and not to mention all the laughter! Thanks for sharing your weekend.

    It's been a really long time since I've last made rice krispie treats and boy, do they sound good now. Love your sophisticated take on them, too! :-)

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  35. I ADORE this idea! Of course I love rice krispie treats (who doesn't?), but I love the idea of making them a bit more "adult." Another excellent recipe!

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  36. Hmm, call me unimaginative, but I still can't wrap my head around how these would taste. I guess I'd have to start with a sample. Like say half the pan.:)

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  37. How cool! I'm glad you had such a fun weekend, and that we're getting involved in this bakesale. Although I dont think I'll get to meet you this weekend, it would be fun to meet up on a future bloggy thing! I would have loved to have gone, but there are only so many things that my time and money will allow!

    I've recently rediscovered rice krispy treats, they are extremely useful for structural elements of cakes, I usually spike with a little caramel, and the kids love them so much they have been requesting extra with their cakes!

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  38. So happy to see you at Camp. And - LOVED your t-shirt!!

    There's a soft place in my heart for rice krispie treats... I like mine especially gooey. Haven't thought about these in YEARS, and I'm not sure I've ever made them as an adult. Will have to remedy that sometime.

    [K]

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  39. Just tried these and I loved the little sophisticated kick of the rosemary! Not overpowering, but just a subtle hint that leaves you wanting another taste!

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