MERRY CHRISTMAS!

As promised, here is the second part of some of my favorite Christmas Recipes. I usually start my baking and candy making spree with the candy first, because it keeps well if kept in good containers that are sealed well.  After I get all the candy made, I move onto the glazed breads and cookies.  Some cookies freeze well, but others scream….don’t freeze me!  As I mentioned before, I will try to flash a few pictures here and there,
as I whip and cream and blend and dip.  I hope you enjoy these recipes as much as our family has over the years.  Merry Christmas Everyone.
COCONUT DELIGHTS
Like Little Almond Joys
1 cup sugar
1 1/4 cup white Karo Syrup
1/2 cup water
1/8 teaspoon Salt
Cook this mixture to 224 degrees, take of the heat and add:
1 Tablespoon flour
1 teaspoon vanilla, then
1/2 lb. Macaroon coconut
and
14 oz. angel flake coconut.
*I usually find Macaroon coconut in bulk at larger grocery stores.
If you cannot find it, just use angel flake.

When mixed well, pour into a buttered pan 8×8.  When cool form in round balls or rectangular bars.  Place a raw almond on the top and dip in chocolate.

*

*MY FAVORITE CARAMELS

*This caramel takes some cooking time and patience,
 but is well worth it.   
4 cups sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Quart Whipping Cream
2 cups light Karo Syrup
1 large can Evaporated Milk like Sego
*Not Condensed milk
1 Tablespoon Pure Vanilla
Mix sugar, salt, whipping cream and Karo syrup in a large heavy pan.  Cook on medium heat, stirring constantly.  Cook until FIRM soft ball stage. It takes about 1 hour to cook, stirring constantly!  Add the vanilla and stir well.  Pour candy onto a large buttered cookie sheet.  Let cool, then cut and wrap with wax paper.
EASY PECAN ROLLS
*This makes nougat style logs.
For creamy centers, make Boston Creams
2 cups marshmallow cream
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 pound soft caramels
2 teaspoons cream
*I roll in the homemade caramel above,
but you don’t have to.
2 cups toasted pecans, finely chopped
Directions:
1. In a large bowl, combine the marshmallow cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Stir with a stiff spoon until it becomes too difficult, then knead with your hands until all of the sugar is incorporated and you have a smooth, putty-textured ball.
2. Divide the candy into 8 equal parts, and roll them into thick logs about 1” in diameter. Place the logs on a baking sheet lined with foil or waxed paper, and freeze the logs until very firm, at least 1 hour.
3. Once the logs are very solid, place the unwrapped caramels in a large microwave-safe bowl with the cream. Microwave for one minute, then stir the caramels. If they have not all melted, or if it is still very stiff, microwave for an additional brief period. Stir until the caramel is smooth.
4. Place the chopped pecans in a shallow bowl or pie tin.
5. Remove the logs from the refrigerator. Using a fork or dipping tools, dip one in the melted caramel until it is completely submerged. Remove it from the caramel, then place it on the chopped pecans, and roll it in the nuts until every surface is covered with nuts. Replace the log on the baking sheet and quickly repeat with remaining logs. If the caramel gets too thick, microwave it again briefly until it is smooth and liquid.
6. Once all of the logs have been coated in caramel and nuts, return them to the freezer for 30 minutes. Once they are firm, they can be cut into round slices. Pecan Roll can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. Or you can freeze them for later use.
CHOCOLATE TRUFFLES
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup sugar
6 tablespoons butter
1 cup milk chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon pure vanilla or add other flavorings
Chopped nuts or other
DIRECTIONS:

Combine the heavy cream, sugar, and butter in a small saucepan; bring just to boil. Remove from heat; immediately add chocolate chips. Stir until chips are melted; add vanilla. Pour into bowl. Cool, stirring occasionally, until chocolate begins to set. Cover and chill in refrigerator several hours. Form mixture into balls of desired size, working quickly to prevent melting. Roll in chopped nuts. Store in refrigerator or freezer until serving time.

 

 

MY FAVORITE CARAMEL CORN
This is soft, chewy gooey caramel corn
YOU WILL NEED:
1 Cup Butter (2 Sticks)
4 cups Brown Sugar (not packed)
2 cups light Karo Syrup
2 cans Sweetened Condensed Milk
*not Evaporated Milk
2 Teaspoons good Vanilla
8 to 10 quarts popped popcorn.
DIRECTIONS:

Combine butter, sugar, karo syrup and stir well. Keep stirring over medium heat until sugar has dissolved. When mixture comes to a slow boil, add your condensed milk – keep stirring. Stir constantly until mixture comes to a soft ball stage. (234-238 degrees) Stir in vanilla, and dip apples or pour over popcorn, and stir to coat.

 

 

CINNABUN CARAMEL CORN
*This is an easy fast microwave caramel, that yummy!
Here is the recipe:
12 cups of Popped Pocorn
(about 1/2 Cup of kernels)
1 cup nuts…your choice (optional)
cashews, almonds, peanuts, pecans
1 Cup Brown Sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon (optional)
1/2 Cup Karo Syrup
a pinch of salt
1 stick or cube of Real Butter
I used Salted butter
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
vanilla wafers, chips or Almond Bark
to drizzle over the top of popcorn
Preheat oven to 250 degrees
Directions:

Place popcorn and nuts if desired, in a large bowl and set aside. In microwave safe bowl, Measure your brown sugar, and throw in a pinch of salt. I used 1/4 tsp for a double recipe. Chop butter into chunks and place on top of sugar mixture. Pour Karo Syrup over the top of everything. Microwave on high for 30 seconds and then stir to combine. Return to microwave and heat for 2 minutes more. Remove and stir and then return to microwave for 2 minutes more, until hot and bubbly.


The butter will combine well with ingredients by now.


Remove from the microwave and add in vanilla, cinnamon (opt), and baking soda. Stir to combine. The mixture will foam and rise. Pour caramel mixture over popcorn and nuts and stir very well, until everything is well coated.


Spread popcorn mixture onto parchment lined cookie sheet. Place in the oven and bake for 10 minutes stirring every 5 minutes….if you want it slightly chewy. Bake for 20 minutes, stirring every five minutes…..if you want your popcorn crunchy!


This part is optional, but really good: Melt your Vanilla chips, wafers or Almond Bark (about 4 oz)….and drizzle over popcorn. Let cool, until chocolate has set. Break into chunks and enjoy.

 

 

 

DIVINITY
*My hubbies favorite candy
*Important:  Pick a clear, no humidity or stormy day to make this candy.
Use fresh eggs, and you should always have success.
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup light karo syrup
2 large egg whites
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Butter or margarine for greasing cookie sheet,
or place on wax paper.
Directions:
1.  Butter a large cookie sheet and line it with waxed paper. Set aside
2.  Combine the sugar, water, karo and salt in pan; stir well and bring to a boil.  Wash down crystals on sides of pan and then let boil until it reaches a firm ball stage (245 degrees or until hardens when dropped into cold water.
3.  While syrup is cooking, beat the egg whites until stiff, but not dry.  Pour the hot syrup in a thin steady stream over the egg whites while beating with a mixer on highest speed.  Beat until mixture begins to thicken, and loses it’s glossiness, and holds it’s shape when dropped from a spoon. Add vanilla and the nuts if desired.  Drop quickly by teaspoon onto waxed paper. 
 (Good divinity has lost its shine, but is still soft to eat.  Once it starts to set up, it sets up very fast!) Store in well sealed container.
EASY CREAMY BAVARIAN MINTS
1 lb of good milk Chocolate
*I like Symphony or Hershey
1 can of Eagle Brand Condensed Milk
a large chunk of butter the size of a walnut
3 to 5 drops oil of peppermint
1 teaspoon good vanilla
Melt milk chocolate and butter in top of double boiler to melt.
Add flavorings to the Condensed milk in a seperate bowl.
Pour the melted chocolate right into the condensed milk,
Beat with mixer for 2 minutes until creamy and smooth.
Pour candy into greased 9×9 pan.
Cover with saran wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Cut in squares and keep in well sealed container.
BEST HOT FUDGE SAUCE EVER
1 Can of Eagle Brand Condensed Milk
1 cube or stick of real butter
1 cup of Milk Chocolate Chips
or
if you like darker chocolate use
1 cup of Semi Chocolate Chips.
1 Teaspoon of good Vanilla
Place all ingredients in saucepan, and on low heat stir until
chocolate chips are melted, and it well blended together.
Use over ice cream etc.
Keep hot fudge in pint bottle with lid, and store in the fridge.
YUM!
MY FAVORITE SUGAR COOKIES
1 Cup real butter (2 sticks) (don’t substitute)
1 Cup Sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 teaspoon Almond Extract
1 teaspoon Vanilla
3 Cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Add in the eggs and extract and vanilla, then blend well.  In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt and whisk to combine.  Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix until completely combined.
Shape the dough into 2 flat disks and wrap in waxed paper or saran wrap and place in the fridge to chill for 1 to 2 hours.  The longer the better.  If you want the cookies to hold the shape well, don’t skip this!
When you are ready to roll out the dough, lightly sprinkle flour onto your work surface and roll out dough with a rolling pin.  Cut out the cookies thick or thin….however you like.  I like a bit more than 1/4 inch.  (Hope that makes sense)….if you want them softer, roll them thicker.  If you want a crispy cookie, roll them thinner.
Cut out the cookies.  If you are not going to frost them, you can sprinkle them before baking with coarse sugar.  It will look like glitter! Bake at 350 for 8-12 minutes.  The baking time really depends on your preference:  If you like them really soft, under bake a bit.  In my oven 8 to 9 minutes works.  I pull mine out, when they are barely, barely, barely golden on the edges.  Remove onto a cooling rack and let cool completely before frosting.  
Frosted cookies taste the best the 2nd day, so you can make these ahead of time!  I frost with Almond Cream Cheese Frosting or Buttercream.  These have been previously posted.  Keep your cookies in a tupperware container with a lid or similar.  I like to place mine after the frosting has set up, in between layers of wax paper in your container.
TRIPLE LAYER DESSERT
*A family Favorite
1 stick of butter
1 cup chopped nuts – almonds or walnuts
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
1 cup flour
9 ounces cool whip
8 ounces cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar
3 ounce pkg of vanilla instant pudding
3 ounce pkg. of milk chocolate or chocolate instant pudding
3 cups Cold Milk
Layer one:  Mix 1st 4 ingredients together and press in the bottom of 9×13 pan.  Bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees.
Layer two:  Cream the cream cheese well, then add the powdered sugar and blend well.  Mix in the Cool Whip.  Press this mixture over layer one (crust) when the crust is very cool.
Layer three:  Mix the instant puddings together with 3 cups of cold milk with a wire whip, and let set until thickened.  (Refer to pkg. instructions – using 3 cups of Milk)  Pour over layer number two. (Cream Cheese mixture)
Refrigerate until pudding is well set, then top with more Cool Whip.  Refrigerate again for several hours before serving.
Variations:
Lemon Lush:  You can use 2 small packages Lemon instant pudding or one large pkg. with 3 cups cold milk.
*I also love this dessert made with Raspberry or Strawberry junket.  You can make the junket as directed for a pie, and then add frozen raspberries and huckleberries to the pudding.  Let cool slightly, then put on top of cream cheese mixture.  Top with more Cool Whip.
HAPPY BAKING AND CANDY MAKING!

 

  • Tammy - January 16, 2012 - 11:42 am

    Yummy! Just wondering on the Bavarian Mints if after you cut them in squares if they need to stay refrigerated in a container. Thanks!ReplyCancel

    • Jonna - January 16, 2012 - 11:52 am

      Hi Tammy,

      If the mints are set up as you desire, then they can sit out of the fridge.
      These are also yummy dipped in white chocolate!
      JonnaReplyCancel