Treats, Not Tricks, Up Our Sleeve!

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Are you dressing up for the occasion? Are you tricking or are you treating? What are some of your favorite Halloween pastimes or favorite treats? What do I remember from growing up that I loved… let’s see. I used to get dressed up with both of my brothers and we’d stop over at our grandparents house and quick stop in and see them and then we’d head home and trick or treat in our neighborhood. We eventually moved to a very busy street with no real trick or treating adventures to be had, so as we made friends at our new house, we ended up trick or treating in their neighborhoods. I can recall several good Halloween parties growing up and staying out late and bringing home a pillowcase filled with candy! Oh the memories, and ooooh the sore bellyaches I had days after Halloween!

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Now to this day, my own kids trick or treat in the same general area as my husband I did when we grew up. I can tell you, it’s been either super windy, wet, cold or a combination of all of those elements together each year we take the kids out trick or treating! I think I have more fun dressing up in my usual Gumby costume, which makes the adults have a laugh and the youngsters wondering what the heck I am! And as you continue reading, and browse through the images here – you can see I had waaaaay too much fun playing with candy!

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In an earlier blog post, our Vice President, Monica, stopped off at Riegelein in Cadolzburg, Germany. We were able to view some awesome Christmas displays, as well as, some of their more popular novelty varieties. Since it *is* Halloween, we thought we’d share with you some of their Halloween collection! They are super cute, yet very super spooky at the same time!

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Some of these are solid mini chocolates, some are hollow and some are eyeballs filled with milkcream! They are the perfect size and the perfect treat for any of those ghosts and goblins that may show up at your door! We hope you have a safe and happy Halloween! If you are going out, please be sure to dress appropriately and make sure you are visible to other vehicles and people! Trick or Nibble!

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And the Winner *IS*…

Well… the day has finally arrived! It is the official Gourmet International Chili Cookoff Day! Who’s chili will win the top prizes? You’re just going to have to stay here, continue reading, maybe grab yourself a bowl of chili and read on!

The ONLY rule for today’s Chili Cookoff was this: All chefs and chefettes HAD to use Oro Di Parma Chopped Tomatoes. Contestants were given three cans and could use as many of the three cans that their recipe required! Today’s prizes range from gift cards to a t-shirt! Some recipes have your basic ground beef while another recipe has venison! Some chili was spicy and others sweet, some with potatoes and some made with chicken!

We have to say… when we first started this idea of the chili cookoff, we only had maybe 5 or 6 people signing up. We realized the word didn’t get out to everyone and before you know it we had a total of 17 people with chili entries! When I arrived today I got word we were up to 18 total entries! That’s a lot of chili! As you can see from the photos from today, there was enough food to go around and then some! Not only did we have tons of chili to taste test, but we also had some sweet treats to munch on after all the hard taste testing work!

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Speaking of desserts, our own Linda had made two apple pies. As you can see from the photos below, they were totally gone by the end of the lunch bunch rush!

It was really great to see all the employees together hanging out and tasting the chili! It was really fun to listen to everyone talk about which chili was their favorite and give others pointers on which crock pots they should try next! I think we all kept mumbling, “Oh my gosh, there are 18 different pots of chili!” I know I did! I kept saying, “There’s SOOOO much chili!!” Chili for days!

So after much taste testing and hemming and hawing… ballots were cast and we have some winners!

 

We are proud to announce our winners! Our *First Place winner is Marcos* and our *Second Place winner is Maureen*! Congratulations to you both! They each received gift cards – Marcos a gift card to Ucello’s Restaurant, Maureen a gift card to Craig’s Cruisers! Congratulations to you both! Enjoy! There was a third place winner… that would be Yours Truly, Your Gourmet Nibbler! I got the t-shirt!

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We want to say THANK YOU to all our Chefs and Chefettes in the actual making of the chili and also a big THANK YOU to everyone who helped pull this event together! What a fun way to spend a rainy October day at Gourmet International! Some of us may be expanding at the waist line after today’s event, but what a great afternoon to spend with each other! Nibble, Nibble!

Time to Bake Hearty Muesli Applesauce Muffins!

You wouldn’t realize it if you lived here in Michigan with us, but fall has begun! The temperature here has been rocking over 90℉ for the past several days, with some relief in sight later this week! Some school districts in the area even had half days since last Friday, since some do not have air conditioning and classroom temperatures were soaring over 100℉. But… what better way to start the fall season with a hearty muesli muffin made with applesauce?! One of our Gourmet Kitchen Guru’s made this recipe for us over the weekend and shared with the team! It’s delicious! I had one myself this afternoon! Please enjoy the following recipe using Familia Swiss Muesli.

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If you try this recipe, please let us know how your muffins turned out! ENJOY!

Familia Muesli Applesauce Muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups Familia No Sugar Added Muesli
  • 1 1/2 cups flour (we used wheat flour)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon (Szeged, of course!)
  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (we used Lorann Tahitian Vanilla Double Strength)

Steps:

  1. Mix dry ingredients into large bowl.
  2. Mix applesauce, milk, oil, egg and vanilla in a separate bowl.
  3. Add applesauce mixture to dry ingredients and mix until moistened.
  4. Spray muffin cups with non-stick spray or line with muffin liners.
  5. Bake 14-17 minutes at 400℉.
  6. Cool slightly before serving.

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