I've been having issues lately. First was the death of my memory stick adapter which I use to move pictures from my camera to my computer. Then we went on vacation (that's not so much an issue as just a super fun time). Next came the death of my laptop charger resulting in a looong "5-10 days delivery" without a computer.
By the way, I kid you not, that charger went out with a bang. I woke up in the middle of the night to this weird crackling buzzing sound (which turned out to be my possessed charger). I thought it would probably be a good idea to unplug it and throw it out immediately since a) it hadn't really been working for several days and b) it was smoking. The good news is I didn't start a fire. The bad news is, I no longer had a charger for my computer. Even my husband, who is the "this can be salvaged" KING, agreed it needed to be thrown away. (This is the man who packed flip flops for California that had (literally here guys) quarter sized HOLES in the heels. And refused to let me buy him new ones! Because a dollar is DEFINITELY too much to pay Old Navy for a crappy pair of flip flops you might wear to the pool three times.)
Anyyyways, the point I am trying to make is that I have been absent for far too long for lots of bizarr-o reasons and I have lots of yummy treats backed up and begging to be posted, so check back often.
Dirt cups and I go way back to the first grade. Or maybe even the kindergarten (you know- the garden where they keep children). I brought dirt cups with gummy worms for my whole class on my birthday, knowing I was pretty much the coolest EVER. (My rolled socks, and scrunchie-tied XL shirt over leggings only added to that illusion, I assure you).
Last year when I was doing a plant unit with my three year old, I decided we should def. make some dirt cups, but I thought a plant or two might be in order instead of the worms. We decided on carrots (k, disclaimer- in case you're ever on "Who wants to be a Millionaire"- technically those are 'roots').
Since I wasn't blogging then, I don't have pictures of this whole process, but I really do think they're easier than they appear. These would be so cute for Easter.
There are several ways to make dirt cups, some of them including cool-whip or cream cheese. I pretty much just like to layer pudding and crushed Oreos, but it will work any way you want to do it. The important part is the carrots!
Carrot Patch Dirt Cups
-Prepared chocolate pudding, cooled but not completely set (I use Jello Cook'n'serve because I think it tastes better than instant)
-Finely crushed Oreos
-Green candy melts, or white chocolate tinted green with *candy* food coloring, melted
-Small flowerpots (found mine at the craft store for about 90 cents each in the springtime)
-Paper or plastic cups that fit nicely inside your flowerpot (This is the hard part. A clear cup looks best, but I ended up using paper and just trimming it down to fit in my pot because I had such a hard time finding one to fit).
-CK candy writer (optional, but encouraged! Look for these in a local cake decorating shop or craft store.)
In each cup, layer your pudding and crushed Oreos alternately, ending on an Oreo layer. I usually do two layers of each. (If you've never made dirt cups before and that's confusing to you, basically put in a about 1/4 cup pudding, then top with 1/4 cup Oreo crumbs, then top with another 1/4 cup pudding... etc.)
Place in the refrigerator to set.
Unwrap your orange starbursts and place one in the microwave for about 5 seconds or until soft and pliable. Take it out and with clean hands mold it into a carrot shape. Place on a plate. Use the rounded side of a toothpick to make divets on the top side of your carrot if desired, then place in the fridge to set. Repeat process with your other Starbursts.
Put your melted green chocolate in a piping bag and pipe stems onto parchment paper-lined baking sheet. My large carrots have curly-cue stems (pretty self-explanatory from the picture, just move your hand around in a small circular motion, meeting at the same place at the bottom) and my small carrots have W shaped stems. Place tray in the freezer to set quickly.
I used my CK candy writer to attach my stems to my carrots (because it dries like cement!), but if you don't have one, feel free to use more of your green chocolate to attach the pieces. They will be much more brittle if you use this method, so put them in the freezer immediately after attaching, and handle gently.
Place your carrots in, or on top of your dirt cups.
Place each pudding cup inside of a flowerpot and enjoy!