Ok, one cookie down. Now for something that takes a little more commitment. Homemade Peppermint Patties. I know I posted about these a few months ago, but when looking to the Top 12, you can’t leave these out. They always get tons of compliments – I mean really, who knew you could make your own peppermint patties? So, so good.
I usually let the innards sit overnight so they have a little snap. And, I find they take more chocolate than you think. The dipping is a real pain. You’ll want to quit about 10 times. But later, once you’re polishing off the last one, you’ll wish you hadn’t given up and tossed a bunch of undipped middles out. Trust me. Keep on dipping.
Remember to use bakers chocolate or candy coating so the chocolate hardens nicely. And, (like I really need to say this) be sure to save some for guests. I know it’s hard, but you’re not supposed to eat them all yourself. You can find this recipe online here on the Eagle Brand website.
1 can (300ml) Regular Eagle Brand Sweetened condensed Milk
1tbsp (15ml) peppermint extract (I add a little more to make them extra minty)
6 cups (1.5L) confectioners’ sugar (that’s icing sugar)
1 1/2lbs chocolate candy coating or dark or semi-sweet baking chocolate, melted.
1. Combine Eagle Brand and peppermint extract. Add sugar, beating on low speed until smooth and well blended. Turn mixture onto surface sprinkled with confectioners’ sugar.
2. Knead lightly to form a smooth ball. Shape into 1 inch (2.54cm) balls. Place 2cm paart o n parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Flatten each ball into a 1 1/2 inch (4cm) patty. (I used the flat bottom of a drinking glass lightly dusted with sugar.)
3. Let dry 1 hour or longer; turn over and let dry at least 1 hour. With fork, dip each patty into warm candy coating (draw fork lightly across rim of pan to remove excess coating). Invert onto wax-paper-lined baking sheets; let stand until firm. Store covered at room temperature or in refrigerator.
4. Try very hard not to eat them all as soon as they’ve hardened.
Tomorrow, we’ll tackle cookies that you can make to use up the leftover chocolate after you dip the patties.
Are you ready to get baking? I’m digging deep into my legendary Christmas Baking Binder to bring you my top 12 Treats. Cookies, bars, brownies, bark, fudge and candy. We’re gonna make a little of everything.
In my younger days I would make 30 types of treats and give goodie baskets to a rather long list of hungry and happy recipients. Sweet! Now that time is short, I’ve cut it down to my top 12, and bake mostly for family. After all this baking, I’ve learned a thing or two.
Before we begin, here are 10 things you should keep in mind when you set out to do a big bake.
1. If you’re baking on a budget, remember chocolate goodies are spendy. Fill baskets with cookies and just a few chocolate treats to keep the cost down.
2. Read through the recipes you’re planning to make and make a master shopping list. Spots like Bulk Barn have many of the things you’ll need, and if you’ve done your homework you can get your shopping done in no time at all and for much less than multiple late night trips to the grocery store.
3. Read the recipes all the way through before you start. There’s nothing worst than setting out to make a quick batch of cookies and realizing you need to chill the dough overnight.
4. Wear a short sleeved shirt. Trying to take off a sweater when covered in chocolate and flour is the worst.
5. Tie your hair back at the start. Same reason. Pushing your hair back with messy hands is a pain.
6. Parchment paper really is the best to line trays, and can be used more than once.
7. Pay attention to the part in the recipe that talks about cooling and when to transfer the treats. Your cookies will be better looking if you follow the rules.
8. Baking is not a ‘wing it’ sport. Precision delivers the best results. Measure carefully and you’ll find things bake as expected and taste better than if you guesstimate.
9. Sometimes experiments turn out well. Go ahead and try some new things. (You’ll hear about my cookie invention later this week.)
10. Having a few cookie trays on hand makes quick work of big batches of cookies. Borrow some if you only need once a year. Preferably from someone who’ll give you a nice glass of wine when you return them. You can enjoy it with some delicious fresh baked goodies!
MOMMYDO TREAT 1: Whipped Shortbread
This is an easy recipe from The Harrowsmith Cookbook, and credit is given to Shirley Hill of Picton Ontario. It’s quick to make and is always a big hit. I’ve been making it since I was in grade school. It doesn’t go that far, so I often double it. The key to these is to really beat them between ingredients. Don’t stop when the ingredients are mixed, give them a minute or more to beat at each step.
I finish the cookies 2 ways, with a little candied cherry or with a little silver ball.
1/2 lb. Butter
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup icing sugar
1 cup flour
Beat butter until light and add remaining ingredients one at a time, beating well after each addition. Roll into small balls and flatten with a fork (I JUST DROPPED MINE).
Bake at 300
F for 30 min.
Makes 3 dozen
Wow! Everything seems to get done at the last minute around here lately. But I’m happy to say that BOTH kids will have an advent calendar this year. I squeezed out an extra day, as the boy is visiting grandparents tonight, so although it’s not hung, it’s ready to go.
I got the idea from Lindsay over at Little House Blog a few years ago here and have enjoyed filling it ever since. Here it is handing last winter.
I needed to make one for Obi so I went back to Little House Blog and used this free printable to create a second set of bags.
I love the colours and set the numbers off to the side to give it a modern feel.
They’re all done and ready to hang.
His will be filled with the contents of a LEGO advent calendar and hers will be filled with baby things like socks, headbands and some Little People.
Around here, we hang day by day to avoid the whole “Why can’t we open them all at once?” drama.
If want to make one (next year, maybe, since it’s December tomorrow) you can order the bags from Lindsay’s shop.
Oh Happy Day. December tomorrow. And we’re diving into the Christmas Baking binder to start the 12 Treats of Christmas. Are you ready to get your bake on?
So my Sis (STOP READING NOW SIS) is embracing a sugar free life. But we’re both big fans of advent and this year, the Starbucks advent calendar.
But what’s the fun in opening a calendar when you can’t enjoy the spoils? So I took it up on myself to adapt the calendar to include non-food trinkets. I tried to do this on a tight budget as the calendar itself is a little spendy. So cool though…the tins are sitting on a magnetic chalk board with a simple wooden frame. Nice! You should reveal a caramel each day…but instead my sis will find all sorts of weird and wonderful things.
There are little ball magnets in there, a tea-set of erasers, post-it type notes, crafty things, little puffy nativity stickers, eye shadow, rubber bands and more. Nothing fancy for sure, but a little surprise to count down to Christmas? Love. Advent is one of my fav holiday traditions.
I don’t think I’ve ever missed a year.
I’ve continued the tradition with the boy. And now need to make a version for Obi. I’m not crazy – I know you can’t have for one and not the other, even if one is only 1. I’m on the hunt for things to fill hers with. And the bags for the creation arrived from the Penny Paper Co. today!
I’ll post about that undertaking on the weekend. I also have another great advent idea to share then too!
I just realized today that December is just around the corner, so if you’re thinking of creating an Advent project you’d better get crackin’.