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Candies work just fine in desserts

Did I ever mention that I liked chocolate? Or, talk about my obsession with candy and candy bars? Or, did I happen to drop a hint or two that cookies and cakes are some of my best friends?

If you’re familiar with me and what I like to eat, it will come as no surprise that I often combine these items to the delight of my family and the dismay of my hips.

This past week, when I had the occasion to purchase a gigantic, industrial-sized bag of candy bars for an event I was running, I knew to a certainty that there would be leftovers. Some might call them “planned overs,” but I’d rather call it what it is – me not being able to resist anything that smacks of a bargain.

The event was well attended but not surprisingly I still have quite a few of those 5,000 candy bars left. I found myself discovering some untried combinations of candy, cookie and cake and couldn’t resist sharing.

Rolo Over, This Dessert Is Perfect

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

1 large egg

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 cup sugar

2 tablespoons cold coffee (leftover is just fine or instant coffee mixed with hot water)

1 tablespoon vanilla

1 1/2 cups flour

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

8 ounces chopped Rolo candy

About 1/2 can sweetened condensed milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil (leave extra hanging over the edge to use as handles to remove the cooked bar), spray the foil with non-stick spray and set the pan aside. Melt the butter in a large glass bowl in the microwave. Add the egg, sugars, coffee and vanilla to the melted butter and whisk vigorously to combine.

Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt and stir with a wooden spoon just until mixed. Do not over mix. Set aside about 2/3 cup dough and put the remaining dough out into prepared pan. Press the dough into the pan then smooth the top. Sprinkle the Rolo pieces evenly over the top of the dough. Pour sweetened condensed milk over the top of the Rolos and dough. Then crumble the remaining dough over the top of the sweetened condensed milk. Bake for about 25 to 30 minutes, or until center is just about set. Do not over bake. This bar cookie will firm up as it cools. cool for at least 3 hours before removing the bar from the pan with the foil handles. Can be make up to a week in advance and kept in the refrigerator or frozen for up to 4 months. Serves 6 to 8.

Candy Bar Croissants

1 tube (8 ounces) refrigerated crescent rolls

1 tablespoon butter, softened

2 plain milk chocolate candy bars (1.55 ounces each), broken into small pieces

4 tablespoons sliced almonds

1 egg, lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Put a piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet (you can grease it if you prefer). Unroll crescent roll dough; separate into triangles. Brush the top with the butter. Arrange candy bar pieces and some of the almonds evenly over triangles then roll them up from the wide end. Place point side down on the prepared cookie sheet. Brush the top of the rolled up croissant with the beaten egg and sprinkle the remaining almonds on top. Bake for 11 to 13 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on a rack and serve slightly warm. Makes 8.

Note: You can use puff pastry instead of the crescent rolls; you just need to cut your own triangles.

– Recipe submitted by Paula Angelano of Chicago Slice of Life is a food column that offers recipes, cooking advice and information on new food products. It appears Sundays. If you have a question about cooking or a food item, contact Eileen Goltz at or write The Journal Gazette, 600 W. Main St., Fort Wayne, IN 46802.