EGG NOG CUPCAKES with RUM CARAMEL

EGG NOG CUPCAKES with RUM CARAMEL   
Yield: about 18-20 cupcakes
     Recipe adapted from: Annie’s Eats

CUPCAKES

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour

¼ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg

¼ cup dark rum or bourbon (optional)

1 cup eggnog

¼ cup oil

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup sugar

  • Preheat the oven to 350˚.
  • Line cupcake pans with paper liners.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and nutmeg; whisk to combine.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the rum, eggnog, vegetable oil, vinegar, and sugar.
  • Beat on medium-low speed until well blended.
  • Add in the dry ingredients and mix on low speed just until incorporated.
  • Divide the batter between the prepared cupcake liners, filling the cups 2/3 full.
  • Bake 22-24 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool in the pan 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

CARAMEL
1 cup sugar

1/4 cup water
6 tablespoons butter cut into small pieces
3/8 cup heavy cream
1/8 cup rum

  • Whisk together the sugar and water in a medium saucepan and whisk over high heat until sugar is dissolved. Don’t stir the mixture but gently swirl the pan until it has reached a dark brown amber color.
  • At that point whisk in the butter. (Careful- it will bubble up- don’t burn yourself.)
  • Remove from the heat and whisk in the cream and bourbon.
  • Allow caramel to cool in the fridge before filling/drizzling.

FROSTING
2 sticks of butter
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
4 tablespoons egg nog
pinch of nutmeg
pinch of salt

  • Using an electric mixer, beat the softened butter until it is creamy and pale.
  • Gradually add the powdered sugar until thick and creamy.
  • Add the egg nog one tablespoon at a time until the texture seems right.
  • Add the nutmeg and salt and beat for another minute or so.

ASSEMBLY

  • Once the cupcakes have cooled, scoop a tablespoon-size amount out of each one with a small spoon or paring knife.
  • Fill with the caramel.
  • Pipe on frosting and drizzle with remaining caramel or a chocolate glaze which is my favorite.
  • Sprinkle with a dash of nutmeg and enjoy!

Submitted to FULL PLATE THURSDAY @Miz Helen’s Country Cottage.

BEST Homemade DINNER ROLLS

These really are the best soft and flavorful homemade dinner rolls ever!  I found the recipe over at The Stay at Home Chef and all I can say is that she did not waste that 5 years perfecting this recipe.

Prep time 3 hours
Cook Time 12 mins
Author: Rachel Farnsworth
Yield: 24 rolls

2 cups warm milk
2 tablespoons instant dry yeast
¼ cup white granulated sugar
2 teaspoons salt
6 tablespoons salted butter, softened
2 large eggs
6 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon melted butter

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine warm milk, yeast, sugar, salt, butter, and eggs.
  • Add in 5½ cups of flour. Using a dough hook, turn the mixer on to a low speed. Once the flour starts to incorporate into the dough, increase the speed to a medium range. Slowly add the remaining ½ cup of flour until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. The dough mixture should be slightly sticky and soft. Add more or less flour until the dough reaches the desired consistency. The amount of flour you add in bread making is always an approximation and you should go by feel.
  • Transfer the dough to a lightly greased mixing bowl. Cover with a towel and let rise 90 minutes – it should double in size.
  • Lightly grease a baking sheet. Punch down the dough and form into 24 rolls. Place on the greased baking sheet in six rows of four.
  • Cover and let rise 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake the rolls for 12 to 14 minutes, until lightly browned.
  • Remove rolls from oven and brush with melted butter. For a sweet twist I sometimes use a honey butter.
  • Serve the rolls warm, or to cool, let rest on the pan for 15 minutes before transferring to a wire cooling rack. Once cooled completely, store in a plastic bag.

ALMOND WALNUT DANISH

These are some of my favorite go to danish for a holiday morning. They can be made ahead and served room temperature or warmed up with a dot of butter for decadence.

ALMOND WALNUT DANISH
1 cup butter
1 cup milk
1 1/2 cups warm water
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons yeast
4 eggs, beaten
7 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup + walnut crumbles

  • In a saucepan melt butter.
  • Add milk and water whisking until smooth consistency and JUST boiling.
  • Cool 5-10 minutes so you don’t kill the yeast.
  • Add the sugar, salt and yeast to form a sponge like blob.
  • Add the eggs until uniform consistency.
  • In a mixer with a dough hook attached, combine flour and yeast mixture.
  • Knead well. Put in refrigerator for at least several hours, but overnight is better.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Roll a ball of dough the size of a golf ball into a rope and coil into a circle. Make sure the center is thinner than the outer edges to hold the filling in. Sometimes I prefer squares, but you just have to work with your dough after you have it coiled.
  • Fill with a heaping tablespoon of filling per danish (recipe below).
  • Let rise an hour in a warm place.
  • Bake 15 minutes.
  • Frost with drizzle.

ALMOND DRIZZLE
1 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons grated orange peel
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoons butter, melted

  • Whisk together butter, milk, almond extract and orange peel until well blended.
  • Gradually add powdered sugar, mixing until desired consistency.
  • Drizzle all over danish, sprinkling with walnuts.

MOLASSES CRINKLES

Normally I leave these plain, but just for the holiday we added a little cheery icing and sprinkles.
MOLASSES CRINKLES
3/4 cup butter, softened to room temperature
1 egg, beaten
4 tablespoons molasses
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 1/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon cinnamon
turbinado sugar for dipping

  • Sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and cloves. Set aside.
  • Cream butter, add sugar gradually until consistently smooth.
  • Blend in beaten egg and molasses.
  • Gradually stir flour mixture into creamed mixture.
  • Chill dough 1 hour or overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Shape dough into small balls and dip tops in turbinado sugar.
  • Place cookies on WELL greased cookie sheet or silicone mat. DO NOT FLATTEN.
  • Bake 7-9 minutes.
  • Let cool 2 minutes before moving to cooling rack.

LEBKUCHEN aka GINGER COOKIES

Do you have a recipe that calls for candied citron? Don’t know what it is? Well, it’s not candied lemon or grapefruit peel. Citron is an actual semitropical fruit that’s similar to a lemon but with a thicker skin. To make candied citron, the citron is blanched in water, boiled in sugar syrup, and dried. It lends a mild floral note to fruitcakes and other such confections. While I love candied citron know that you have other options. Each shines in a different way, but they can pretty much be used interchangeably in most recipes, so if you happen to have one kind on hand, try that in your recipe.

Photography by: Chelsea Cavanaugh

ORANGE SLICES (Top Left) – They’re great as a decorative flourish on top of cupcakes.
CITRON PEEL (Top Right) – Though the pulp is sour, the candied peel is perfect for baking into stollen or stirring into granola.
LEMON RIND (Middle Left) – Finely chop it and mix into muffins and pancakes for a bright flavor.
ORANGE PEEL (Middle Right) – Dip pieces in dark chocolate and serve as an after-dinner treat.
CITRON SLICES (Bottom Left) – Serve thin slices as part of a holiday cheese plate.
CLEMENTINE SLICES (Bottom Right) – You can also garnish cocktails with these.

Candied citrus is available at specialty stores (especially around the holidays) and online at stores like junetaylorjams.com, but you can also easily make your own at home. Either way, store it in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to a month.

LEBKUCHEN
Traditional Lebkuchen German Christmas cookies are a form of gingerbread descended from medieval times and taste spicy and nutty in flavor. They were typically a combination of spices, honey, and dried bread crumbs. They are often cut into “sugar” cookie shapes and ornately decorated. I made a super “simple” version this year for hubby since I am unable to make neighbor plates and do my normal holiday baking.

  • Prep time: 15 minutes.
  • Cook time: 10-12 minutes.
  • Makes 12 servings.

COOKIES
½ cup honey
½ cup molasses
¾ cup brown sugar
1 LARGE egg
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2¾ cup flour, plus flour for dusting
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon each ground cinnamon, cloves, allspice & nutmeg
⅓ cup candied citron, diced (I prefer candied ginger)
⅓ cup hazelnuts, finely chopped

ICING
1 cup sugar
¼ cup milk
½ teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
½ cup confectioners’ sugar

GARNISH
Sliced almonds
Candied citron or ginger
Melted chocolate

  • In a medium saucepan, bring honey and molasses to a boil.
  • Remove from heat; stir in brown sugar, egg, lemon juice and zest.
  • In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda and all spices, and stir in molasses mix, citron and hazelnuts. Cover; chill overnight.

 

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • On a floured, hard surface roll out a small amount of chilled dough to ¼-inch thick. If dough is sticky, use more flour.
  • Cut dough in 2-inch rounds or shapes; transfer to prepared baking sheets.
  • Bake 10-12 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, make icing by heating sugar and liquids in a small saucepan (do not boil).
  • Remove from heat; stir in confectioners’ sugar. If icing crystallizes, reheat and add a touch of water or milk.
  • Transfer cookies to rack and while still hot, brush with icing and decorate with almonds, citron, ginger or sprinkles; or, let cool completely and drizzle with melted chocolate.
  • Store in sealed container.

GRAN’S HOLIDAY JELLO SALAD aka FESTIVE CRAN PINEAPPLE JELLO

Now there is much debate over Gran’s cranberry salad recipe, but one thing was for sure, she’d have to make a double batch, one for my mom and aunt and another for everyone else.  Now while I usually helped prepare the above recipe, I hated it!! One year she even decided the grapes needed to be peeled – need I say more? I much prefer the recipe below that is a FUN version of hers.  Shhhh, don’t tell anyone, but I have been known to eat a whole batch by myself.  In my defense it was while I wasn’t feeling good and had a sore throat.

GRAN’S HOLIDAY SALAD aka FESTIVE CRAN PINEAPPLE JELLO
1 package (3 ounces) cherry Jell-o
1 package (3 ounces) black cherry Jell-o
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1 can (14 ounces) whole berry cranberry sauce
1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple, undrained
2 cups seedless green grapes, quartered
chopped pecans (optional)

  • Dissolve the jell-o in the boiling water in a large bowl.
  • Fold in the pineapple and cranberry sauce.
  • Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Fold in grapes and pecans if desired.
  • Refrigerate until firm.

DAY 17 ~ BLOGMAS 2017 ~ FAVORITE FAMILY RECIPES

I’ve been looking forward to this day! I have many many recipes, but these are the closest to my heart. Grab a cup of my SIL’s homemade hot chocolate and homemade marshmallows and join me while we chat.

There are 3 recipes that come to mind here.  The first is my OATNUT SOURDOUGH HERB DRESSING, a recreation of my dad’s cornbread dressing. Several years ago my brother asked me to try and reproduce the recipe as a scratch recipe and VOILA’, I did it! This wasn’t easy since daddy started with a box of Mrs. Cubbinson’s cornbread dressing cubes and then started winging it from there.


OATNUT SOURDOUGH HERB DRESSING
10 slices Brownberry or Oroweat OATNUT bread, cut into bite size chunks
1/2 loaf sourdough French bread, cut into bite size chunks
1 large sweet onion, chopped fine
1 small bunch celery (leaves and all), chopped fine
1/2 bag baby carrots, chopped fine
1 box mushrooms, chopped fine
1 tablespoon sea salt
1 tablespoon white pepper
2 sticks unsalted butter
4 cups hot water
2 tablespoons Better than Bouillon Chicken base
2 tablespoons Buttery Herb & Garlic Mix (I believe McCormick makes it)
4 teaspoons minced garlic, Jar

  • Cut bread into bite sized chunks and spread out in a thin layer over cookie sheets.
  • Bake at 200 degrees for 3-4 hours until pieces are actually hard.
  • Chop all the vegetables.
  • In a large cast iron pan melt 1/4 cup of the butter.
  • Add the onions and saute until translucent. The add the celery and carrots and continue sauteing until crisp tender. Add the garlic last as it will burn first.
  • Whisk together the water, better than bouillon chicken base and all of the seasonings.
  • Add the melted butter.
  • In a large pan toss the bread slices together.
  • Add the sauteed vegetables and toss again.
  • Add the liquid mixture and toss again until well absorbed.
  • Fold entire mixture into at least a 9×13 baking dish.
  • Bake uncovered 1 hour.
  • At this point I use a small portion for our dinner that night and freeze the rest.
  • When it’s time to cook it again, I defrost it, put it back in the same baking dish and bake it again, but this time covered with foil until the last 15 minutes so it doesn’t dry out. We like it crisp on top so I remove the foil the last 15 minutes.

The second is crazy aunt Lousie’s Corn Flake Wreaths.

My great aunt who I only got to see a couple times a year used to make these every year special for me.  My cousins and I would wait out on the front steps for her arrive just to see them, the wreaths that is. She always made them soooooooooo pretty and perfect!  Aunt Louise was just plain crazy it seemed to me.  I can’t pinpoint any one thing that made me think that, but as the years wore she continually proved it.  Let’s just say if the made a movie of her life, Shirley MacLaine would play her part.  Aunt Louise reminds me of Shirley’s character Ouiser Boudreaux in Steel Magnolias.

HOLIDAY WREATHS
(these are better when they are made a few days ahead)
30 large marshmallows (or 1 jar marshmallow cream)
1/2 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoon green food color
3 1/2 cups cornflakes
Red Hots

  • Combine marshmallows, butter, vanilla and food color in top of double boiler. Heat and stir frequently until well blended.
  • Gradually stir in cornflakes until well blended.
  • Drop onto wax paper and arrange into wreath shapes. I plop them onto the wax paper and then push out from the center to form the wreaths.
  • Decorate with red hots.
  • Let cool.
  • If your house is warm – chill in refrigerator until set.

The third is a fairly recent one for my Marinated Prime Rib.

MARINATED and SEASONED PRIME RIB
5 pound boneless beef rib roast
3/4 cup Mad Housewife Merlot wine
1 small Vidalia onion, sliced thin
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Avocado oil
*2 tablespoons  Savory Spice Shop Hidden Cove Lemon Garlic Blend
*2 tablespoons  Penzey’s English Prime Rib Rub 
*1 teaspoon  Penzey’s OR Savory Spice Shop’s Horseradish powder

  • Whisk together the wine, water and Worcestershire sauce.
  • Place roast in a large plastic bag that has been placed in a shallow baking dish.
  • Pour marinade over roast and seal bag.
  • Marinate 6-8 hours, turning bag occasionally.
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  • Place sliced onions in bottom of roaster.
  • Drain roast and discard marinade.
  • Rub roast generously with the avocado oil. Let roast sit on drainboard a moment to allow excess oil to drain off.  At this point wash your hands to remove the excess oil also so the rub will go on better.
  • Stir together the Hidden Cove Lemon Garlic Blend, English Prime Rib Rub and the horseradish powder until well mixed.
  • Sprinkle rub mixture over roast until well coated all the way around.
  • Place roast, fat side up on onion slices.
  • Insert oven thermometer.
  • Roast until desired doneness (we like medium rare which was 135 degrees and about 2 1/4 hours), but no more!
  • Transfer roast to cutting board and immediately tent with foil for 20 minutes before carving. This is the resting phase and mandatory to the perfect prime rib. During this phase your roast will raise another 10 degrees.

*If you want a thicker rub add more spices making sure to keep these proportions.

DO NOT SKIP THE RESTING PHASE!!
This is for one of my go to neighbor plate recipes:

CARAMEL BUTTERSCOTCH FUDGE
1 1/4 cup milk chocolate chips
1 1/4 cup butterscotch chips
1/2 cup Kraft caramel bits
1 can Eagle-Brand sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup Fisher’s Cinnamon Pecans

  • Line a 9×9 pan with heavy duty foil leaving enough foil overhanging the edges to use as handle to lift the foil out of the pan after the fudge has set.
  • Using a double boiler over medium heat melt the chips, caramel bits and condensed milk together until smooth.
  • Immediately pour into the foil lined pan.
  • Top with pecans using a piece of wax paper to press the pecans slightly into the fudge.

This is Cinnamon Roll day too – YUMMY! One of my favorite days of the year.  The recipe originally came from one of my favorite aunts who taught me a lot about art, cooking and just plain being creative.  I have made a few minor updates to suit our tastes, but this recipe was ALL her and a secret that my cousin and I kept until the day she died.

ROLLS OF SHARON aka CINNAMON RAISIN BUNS
ROLLS
2 packages Fleischman’s Rapid Rise Yeast
1/2 cup + 2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 cup WARM water
1 cup scalded milk (2 minutes in the microwave)
1/2 cup Crisco stick
5 cups flour, divided
2 large eggs, well beaten
1 teaspoon salt

  • In a small bowl combine the warm water, 2 teaspoons of sugar and both packages of yeast until well blended. Set aside.
  • In a mixing bowl combine the scalded milk, Crisco stick, 1/2 cup sugar and salt. Blend well.
  • Add yeast mixture and blend well.
  • Add the well beaten eggs and half the flour. Mix until well blended.
  • Add the remaining flour (a little more if too sticky) and mix well until dough leaves the sides of the bowl and is elastic.
  • With vegetable oil, wipe the inside of another bowl.
  • Place dough in bowl and turn once.
  • Cover with wax paper and a towel.
  • Let rest in a warm place until double in size.
  • Punch down and divide into 2 balls.
  • Put one on the pastry board and one back in the bowl.
  • Let rest 10 minutes.
  • While resting prepare the filling ingredients.
  • Roll the dough to 1/8 inch thickness in a rectangle about 18×24 inches.
  • Spread half the melted butter over the dough and sprinkle with half the cinnamon sugar.
  • Spread half the raisins over that.
  • Roll tightly jelly roll style and cut into 18 rolls.
  • Place rolls in greased pans 1/4 to 1/2 inches apart.
  • Cover with wax paper and a towel.
  • Let rise again until double in size.
  • Bake 15-20 minutes at 350 degrees.
  • While baking prepare the icing.
  • When rolls come out the oven, put globs of icing on each one. Return to the oven for a minute or two to melt icing all over the rolls.

FILLING
1 stick melted butter
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon Pumpkin pie spice
1 cup golden raisins

  • Whisk together the sugar and cinnamon until well blended.

ICING
1 stick butter, softened
3 3/4 cups powdered sugar
1 tablespoon powdered vanilla
4-6 tablespoons milk

  • Mix all together until smooth.

When re-heating rolls, put a pad of butter on top of roll before microwaving.
These freeze really well.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Now there is much debate over Gran’s cranberry salad recipe, but one thing was for sure, she’d have to make a double batch, one for my mom and aunt and another for everyone else.  Now while I usually helped prepare the above recipe, I hated it!! One year she even decided the grapes needed to be peeled – need I say more?

I much prefer the recipe below.  Shhhh, don’t tell anyone, but I have been known to eat a whole batch by myself.  In my defense it was while I wasn’t feeling good and had a sore throat.

HOLIDAY SALAD
1 package (3 ounces) cherry Jell-o
1 package (3 ounces) black cherry Jell-o
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1 can (14 ounces) whole berry cranberry sauce
1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple, undrained
2 cups seedless green grapes, quartered
chopped pecans (optional)

  • Dissolve the jell-o in the boiling water in a large bowl.
  • Fold in the pineapple and cranberry sauce.
  • Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Fold in grapes and pecans if desired.
  • Refrigerate until firm.

Now on to the REALLY yummy stuff!

CHUNKY MONKEYS
3 cups crushed pretzels
1/2 cup sugar
scant 1 cup butter, melted

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  • Line a 13×9 cake pan with heavy duty foil, leaving plenty on the edges to use as handles later.  This will make clean-up so much easier.
  • In a medium mixing bowl stir together the pretzels, sugar and melted butter until well blended.
  • Press the pretzel mixture evenly into the bottom of the cake pan.

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
11 ounce package caramel baking bits (or 14 ounce vanilla caramels, unwrapped)
2 cups honey roasted peanuts

  • In a medium saucepan melt butter over a medium heat.
  • Whisk in the whipping cream and brown sugar until sugar is dissolved.
  • Stir in caramel bits, stirring constantly until bits are melted and sauce is smooth.
  • Add in peanuts to coat well.
  • Immediately pour over pretzel layer, spreading evenly.

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter chips
1/2 cup butterscotch chips
3/4 cup Heath milk chocolate toffee bits

  • Scatter each of these over the caramel layer.
  • Bake 25-30 minutes or until edges are bubbling.
  • Cool in pan on a wire rack.
  • Lift foil edges to remove bars from pan.
  • Cut into bars.
  • Layer between wax paper in an airtight container.  I store them in the fridge, but the can also be frozen for 3 months.

BUTTERFINGER COOKIES
Ritz crackers
creamy peanut butter
almond bark
sprinkles

  • Spread peanut butter on ritz crackers and top with another cracker.
  • Melt almond bark in the microwave.
  • Dip each cookie in the almond bark and set onto wax paper to harden.
  • If you’re using sprinkles do so before the almond bark hardens.

A few more favorites are:

  • Oreo Cheesecake Balls
  • Magic Marshmallow puffs
  • Peanut Butter Fudge Drops
  • Sea Salt & Caramel Rice Krispie Treats

DAY 16 – BLOGMAS 2017 – LAST MINUTE GIFTS

I’m a Virgo and as such tend to make lists and be over-prepared. So, the only last minute gifts I tend to need are a couple extras for those unexpected visits that come up like a surprise gift from a neighbor.

A few of the “things” I keep on hand (with a festive ribbon already tied to them) for those occasions are:

  • Coffee gift cards
  • Homemade applesauce
  • Homemade jam
  • And closer to the actual day a plate full of homemade goodies

Here are a couple of recipes I make most years that are great to have around and NEVER EVER go to waste whether they are givien as gifts or eaten in house LOL.

CARAMEL BUTTERSCOTCH FUDGE
1 1/4 cup milk chocolate chips
1 1/4 cup butterscotch chips
1/2 cup Kraft caramel bits
1 can Eagle-Brand sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup Fisher’s Cinnamon Pecans
  • Line a 9×9 pan with heavy duty foil leaving enough foil overhanging the edges to use as handle to lift the foil out of the pan after the fudge has set.
  • Using a double boiler over medium heat melt the chips, caramel bits and condensed milk together until smooth.
  • Immediately pour into the foil lined pan.
  • Top with pecans using a piece of wax paper to press the pecans slightly into the fudge.

CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER FUDGE
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup peanut butter chips
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 can Eagle-Brand sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup Crushed Honey Roasted Peanuts

  • Line a 9×9 pan with heavy duty foil leaving enough foil overhanging the edges to use as handle to lift the foil out of the pan after the fudge has set.
  • Using a double boiler over medium heat melt the chips and condensed milk together until smooth.
  • Immediately pour into the foil lined pan.
  • Top with peanut pieces using a piece of wax paper to press the pecans slightly into the fudge.

PEANUT BUTTER FUDGE DROPS

PEANUT BUTTER FUDGE DROPS
2/3 cup Hot water
10 ounces Land of Lakes cocoa mix
2 cups JIF creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup light corn syrup
3 cups C&H powdered sugar, divided 2cups + 1 cup
2 cups crushed vanilla wafers
2 cups crushed ginger snaps
72 Hershey Kisses (I like the cherry cordials)

  • Whisk together the hot water and cocoa mix until smooth.
  • Add peanut butter and corn syrup. Blend until smooth.
  • Add 2 cups powdered sugar and stir until well blended.
  • Stir in cookie crumbs until well blended.
  • Spray wax paper with PURE (these will be sticky so don’t forget this step).
  • Drop heaping teaspoonfuls of dough onto the wax paper.
  • Place the remaining 1 cup of powdered sugar in a shallow bowl.
  • Roll each piece of dough into a ball and dredge in powdered sugar.
  • Press your thumb into the center and fill with a Hershey’s kiss.

SEA SALT & CARAMEL RICE KRISPY TREATS

SEA SALT & CARAMEL RICE KRISPY TREATS
8 cups Rice Krispies
50 Kraft caramels
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup + 1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 bag mini marshmallows
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 teaspoons sea salt flakes

  • In a medium sauce pan over  a low-medium heat stir together the sweetened condensed milk, the caramels and 1/4 cup unsalted butter until smooth.
  • Remove from heat.

 

  • Line a 9×13 baking dish with foil, extending over the edge.
  • Spray with non-stick PURE or PAM.
  • Melt butter in large sauce pan.
  • Add marshmallows and stir  until just melted.
  • Add vanilla, 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 cup of caramel sauce and stir until smooth.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Stir in rice krispies until evenly coated.
  • Press into pan**.
  • Cool completely.

 

  • Pour remaining caramel over rice kripy treats and spread even with a spatula.
  • Sprinkle remaining sea salt over top.
  • Enjoy!
  • Store in an airtight container.

**I use a stainless steel spatula that has been sprayed with PURE to keep it from sticking.  It helps to press down firmly to get an even level.

REINDEER NIBBLES

REINDEER NIBBLES
2/3 cup honey
2/3 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
4 cups regular oats (uncooked)
1 cup unsalted peanuts, slightly chopped
1 1/2 cups golden raisins
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 cups melted CandyQuick

  • Preheat oven to 300°.
  • Whisk together the honey, peanut butter and cinnamon in a small sauce pan over medium heat, stirring constantly until thoroughly heated through. DO NOT BOIL.
  • Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
  • In a large bowl pour peanut butter mixture over the oatmeal, stir to combine.
  • Spread oats in a jelly roll pan sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Bake for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally
  • Return oats to large mixing bowl and stir in peanuts, chocolate chips and raisins.
  • Spread oat mixture back into jelly roll pan and return to oven.
  • Turn oven off and let cool in oven for 90 minutes, stirring occasionally and keeping the door closed.
  • Remove from oven.
  • Melt CandyQuick in 30 second increments until pourable.  Stir after each 30 seconds.
  • Pour CandQuick over oat mixture and freeze for 1 hour.
  • Break apart into pieces.
  • Store in an airtight container.

NOTE: The pieces that are at the bottom make a great granola!

SHARING with FOODIE FRIDAY and TASTY THURSDAY.

BUTTERMILK ROLLS

A batch of homemade bread is a necessary evil for any holiday feast. These rolls are buttery and golden  and just plain delicious!

BUTTERMILK ROLLS makes 24 rolls
1/2 cup warm water
2 envelopes active dry yeast 1/4 ounce each)
6 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon sugar, divided
2 LARGE eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup buttermilk (NOT low-fat)
1 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
4 + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided and melted
3 1/2 + 4 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
Flaky Sea Salt

  • Combine warm water, heat and 1 teaspoon of sugar, set aside until foamy, about 5 minutes or so.
  • In a medium bowl stir together eggs, buttermilk, kosher salt, 4 tablespoons butter, and remaining sugar until well blended.
  • Add yeast mixture and 3 1/2 cups of the flour, stirring until dough forms.
  • Sprinkle for surface with remaining flour.
  • Turn dough out onto floured surface and knead until slightly elastic. Add addictional flour as necessary.
  • Place dough in greased bowl, turning to coat dough.
  • Cover with saran and chill at least 8 hours or overnight.
  • Grease 2 – 12 cups muffin tins.
  • Punch chilled dough down and turn out onto a floured surface.
  • Divide dough in half.
  • Roll one half of the dough to a 12×16 rectangle 1/4 inch thick.
  • Brush with melted butter.
  • Cut into 12 equal pieces.
  • Gently roll each piece into a round and place in muffin tins.
  • Repeat with the other half of the dough until all rolls are ready for baking.
  • Brush again with any remaining melted butter.
  • Cover with a cheesecloth towel and let rise in a warm place 1-1 1/2 hours until double in size.
  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Bake rolls 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
  • Brush again with butter and transfer to cooling rack for 15-20 minutes

SHARING with FOODIE FRIDAY and TASTY THURSDAY.