Saturday, January 31, 2009

Orange Peel Candy

Orange Peel Candy

4 medium navel oranges
2-3 cups of sugar, divided
1 cup water
½ tsp. salt
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, optional
2 tsp. shortening, optional

With a knife, score the peel from each orange into quarters. With fingers, remove peel with white pith attached. Place peel in a saucepan; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Boil, uncovered for 30 minutes. Drain and repeat twice.
Meanwhile, in another saucepan, combine 1 cup of sugar, water and salt. Bring to a boil, boil and stir for 2 minutes or until sugar is dissolved. Drain peel and add to syrup. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer uncovered for 50-60 minutes or until syrup is almost all absorbed, stirring occasionally. (Watch carefully to prevent scorching.) Drain any remaining syrup.
Cool orange peel in a single layer on a foil-lined baking sheet for one hour. Cut into 1/8 inch to ¼ inch strips. Sprinkle remaining sugar on an ungreased 15 inch x 10 inch x 1 inch baking pan. Sprinkle the strips over sugar and toss to coat. Let stand for 8 hours or overnight, tossing occasionally.
If desired, melt chocolate chips and shortening. Dip one end of each orange strip into chocolate; let stand on waxed paper until chocolate hardens. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks. Yield: 5 cups.

These turned out surprisingly well. They take quite a while to make, but they are not labor intensive. You just have to be there while they are boiling. Personally I thought the ones dipped in chocolate tasted the best. They tasted like the Candy Oranges that are shaped like oranges and open up when you whack em. The plain orange peel candy were good without the chocolate, they just have a very strong orange flavor. I packaged them up in a little bag, wrapped a ribbon on top and gave them out to my friends as a little Valentines Day gift.

1-2-3 Cookies

1-2-3 Cookies

2 large Hershey Chocolate bars (I had Sympony Bars with toffee and almonds- yum!)
1 8 oz. tub of Cool Whip
Vanilla Wafers, crushed

Melt chocolate and allow to cool slightly so it doesn’t melt the cool whip. Mix in cool whip and drop spoonfuls of chocolate mixture into crushed cookies. Roll into a ball and place on waxed paper. Freeze cookies for a few hours and serve frozen or slightly thawed.

These are rich and taste like ice cream … quick and easy, oh so yummy!

Club Cookies

Club Cookies

Club Crackers
1 cup butter
2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp almond extract
8 oz slivered almonds, or finely chopped almonds

Spread club crackers evenly on baking sheet in a one layer right next to each other. Melt butter in a saucepan, then add sugar and almond extract. Boil mixture for 1 minute 30 seconds. Pour butter mixture over crackers and top with almonds. Bake in 300 degree oven for 7-8 minutes. Remove from oven and cool before serving.

Good salty and sweet cookies that are quick and surprisingly good. I also varied the recipe a bit by adding some chopped chocolate chips and put them on the cookies when I put the almonds on. I also want to try them again where instead of almond extract I will add vanilla and then boil the sugar mixture a little bit longer so it turns into a more toffee like consistency. Then follow the directions as outlined. I think they will be good.

Dreamsicle Fudge

Dreamsicle Fudge

2 pounds white chocolate, melted
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
6 cups confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon orange extract
Drops of orange food coloring (optional)

Beat cream cheese into melted chocolate until well blended. Beat in confectioner's sugar until mixture is smooth. Stir in orange extract. Spread in an 8x8 inch dish and let set before cutting into squares. Store in refrigerator.

It is so yummy! Melts in your mouth.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Cinnamon Creme Twists

Cinnamon Cream Roll-ups

1 8 oz package of cream cheese, softened
1 egg yolk
1 ¼ cups sugar, divided
1 loaf sandwich bread, crusts removed
1 T. ground cinnamon
¼ cup butter, melted

In a small mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, egg yolk, and ¼ cup sugar; mix well. Flatten bread slices with a rolling pin. Spread cream cheese mixture over each slice to within ½ inch of edges. Roll up diagonally from point to point.

In a shallow bowl, combine the cinnamon and remaining sugar. Dip roll-ups in melted butter, then in cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place in an ungreased 15 in x 10 in x 1 in baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 16-19 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool. Yield 8-10 servings.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Food Processor Fabulous

For Christmas this year I received a food processor from my in-laws. I have wanted one for quite some time and I finally put it to good use. I made a pie crust in the food processor and some bread dough for rolls. I just used the recipes that came in the recipe book for the processor so they weren't anything special, but I LOVED how easily they were made. The pie crust turned out very flaky (it ended up as a Banana Cream Pie) and the dough for the rolls was so soft. It was wonderful! Highly recommend using a food processor for these projects and so many others.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Chocolate Popcorn Snack... Ooey and Gooey

Enjoy Chocolate Popcorn

½ c. unpopped popcorn
1 stick butter
1 bag chocolate chips, milk, semisweet or dark
1 bag mini marshmallows

Pop the popcorn in a hot air popper. Put the butter and marshmallows in a large b owl in the microwave. Cook on high for three minutes. Remove from microwave and stir vigorously until blended together, then add chocolate chips and continue to stir until they melt. Pour gooey chocolate mixture over popcorn and stir to coat. Makes a big bowl of yummy, sticky goodness.

I took the popcorn and let it cool, then shaped the popcorn into small popcorn balls so it would be easier for the kids to eat them. My 4 year old son even helped make the balls and had lots of fun doing that too. It tasted like popcorn, slathered in fudge. Yum!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Happy New Year treat for School!

While in California on vacation, we visited the Jelly Belly Factory in Fairfield, CA. It was so much fun seeing everything. Samantha's classmates wanted a gift back from CA so we decided to buy everyone some jelly beans. When we got home we printed out some labels on the computer and stapled them onto the small bags of Jelly Beans.
We got extra and Jared took them to his pre-school to share as well.


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