Festive Food Gifts with Bek, Maggie, & Pam

Marshmallows

Candy-Cane Marshmallows

 

Martha Stewart Living, December 2004

  • Yield Makes A LOT

Ingredients

  • Vegetable-oil cooking spray
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 4 packages (1/4 ounce each) unflavored gelatin
  • 3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 2 teaspoons red food coloring

Directions

  1. Coat an 9×13-inch pan with cooking spray; line bottom with parchment paper. Coat the parchment with cooking spray, and set pan aside. Put sugar, corn syrup, and 3/4 cup water in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring, until sugar is dissolved. Stop stirring; let mixture come to a boil. Raise heat to medium-high; cook until mixture registers 260 degrees on a candy thermometer.
  2. Meanwhile, sprinkle gelatin over 3/4 cup water in a heatproof bowl; let stand 5 minutes to soften. Set the bowl with the gelatin mixture over a pan of simmering water; whisk constantly until gelatin is dissolved. Remove from heat, and stir in extract; set aside.
  3. Beat egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment until stiff (but not dry) peaks form. Whisk gelatin mixture into sugar mixture; with mixer running, gradually add to egg whites. Mix on high speed until very thick, 12 to 15 minutes.
  4. Pour mixture into lined pan. Working quickly, drop dots of red food coloring across surface of marshmallow. Using a toothpick, swirl food coloring into marshmallow to create a marbleized effect. Let marshmallow stand, uncovered, at room temperature until firm, at least 3 hours or overnight. Cut into squares.

Easy Christmas Fudge

Martha Stewart Living, Special Issue 2008

  • Yield Makes 24 two-inch pieces

Ingredients

  • Vegetable oil, cooking spray
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
  • 3 cups semisweet or white chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup crushed peppermint candy

Directions

  1. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with two sheets of waxed or parchment paper in a crisscross manner (one lengthwise, one crosswise) so ends overhang sides of pan; coat evenly with cooking spray.
  2. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat, cook sugar, salt, butter, cream, and marshmallows, stirring, until butter and marshmallows are almost melted, 5 to 6 minutes.
  3. Bring mixture to a boil; cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add chips and vanilla; stir until chips are melted. Pour mixture into lined pan.
  4. Let fudge cool in the pan at room temperature, 3 hours. Use edges of paper to lift out fudge; place on cutting board, and remove paper. Cut out shapes with cookie cutters, or cut fudge into bars. Sprinkle evenly with crushed candy.

 

Hot chocolate Popcorn

 

Cookies and Cups Blog

  • 1/2 cup un-popped popcorn (about 16 cups popped)
  • 14 oz white candy melting disks or vanilla almond bark
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows
  • 1/2 cup Hot Chocolate (powder) mix
  • 4 oz milk chocolate
  • wax paper

Instructions

  1. Make your popcorn using an air popper. (If you don’t have an air-popper and use microwave popcorn, use plain or lightly buttered/salted.)
  2. In a large bowl combine your popcorn and marshmallows.
  3. Melt you white candy melts according to package directions and drizzle on top of popcorn/marshmallow mix. Stir to coat evenly.
  4. Spread your popcorn on a wax paper lined counter. Immediately sprinkle your hot chocolate mix on top of wet popcorn.
  5. Melt your milk chocolate in the double boiler or microwave and drizzle on top of popcorn.
  6. Let chocolate set.
  7. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Notes : Makes approx 18 cups of popcorn.

 

 

Candy Cane Kiss Kettlecorn

Cookies and Cups Blog

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 (10 oz) bag Hershey’s Candy Cane Kisses, unwrapped
  • *optional 2-3 Tbsp red sprinkles, or coarse sugar

How to Make

  1. In a large pot (have the lid handy) heat your vegetable oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Place 3 kernels in the pot until they pop so you know the pan and oil are hot enough to add all the kernels.
  3. When your “test” kernels pop, Add in the oil and sugar, stirring quickly until coated. Cover the pot and immediately start shaking the pot back and forth, keeping the kernels moving in the hot pan so they don’t burn, occasionally lifting the pan off the burner, while shaking.
  4. Allow the kernels to pop, this will take about 1-2 minutes and when the popping slows to about 1 second in between pops immediately remove from heat, continuing to shake the pot, and empty onto a large baking sheet, to stop the cooking. Immediately sprinkle with salt. This will all happen very fast and I suggest you use pot holders on your hands while shaking the pot, as the pot and lid will get very hot.
  5. Now line a counter with wax or parchment paper and transfer all your kettle corn onto the lined counter in a single layer.
  6. Over a double boiler melt your unwrapped Candy Cane Kisses.
  7. Once melted, drizzle over kettle corn evenly.
  8. Sprinkle with coarse sugar or sprinkles, if desired.

Notes

Store in an airtight container for up to 2 days.

Snowman Spoons

Hot Chocolate Spoons

 

Supplies for Hot Chocolate Spoons:
– spoons, plastic work best
– chocolate chips, regular and mini chips
– marshmallows
– coconut, shredded and sweetened
– peanut butter chips
– butterscotch chips
– crushed candy canes
– wax paper
– plate

Have your supplies out ready to go. Heat up your chocolate chips for spoon dipping first. Place a 1/2 cup of chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 1 minute. Take it out and stir, then continue to heat it for 20 second intervals until melted.
Once your chocolate is melted, dip your spoon into the bowl. You’ll need to stir it around and turn it over to make sure you’ve got it all covered in chocolate. Then set the spoon onto a plate covered in wax paper.

When you’ve got your spoons dipped, it’s time to decorate them. For the snowman, place 3 marshmallows in a line down the spoon. I topped one with a peanut butter chip for the hat and a flake of coconut for the scarf. Then two mini chocolate chips get a tiny dip of melted chocolate on the bottom of them before you place it on the top marshmallow for the eyes.

 

Spiced Nuts

Martha Stewart Living Special Issues, 2005

  • Yield Makes 2 1/2 cups

Ingredients

  • 1 large egg white
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 2 1/2 cups pecan halves, or assorted nuts, such as cashews, walnuts, or almonds

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Beat egg white until soft and foamy. Combine all remaining ingredients except pecans; whisk into egg white. Stir in pecans until well coated; spread mixture in single layer onto an ungreased baking pan.
  2. Bake pecans for 15 minutes, then remove from oven. Using a metal spatula, toss, stir, and separate nuts. Reduce oven to 250 degrees and return nuts to bake until medium brown, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven; toss, and stir again. Place baking pan on wire rack to cool (they will crisp as they cool). Break up any that stick together.

Bek's Iphone pics 008

 Herb and Spice Rubs

Default Herbs:
1/8 cup dried rosemary
1/4 cup dried oregano
1/4 cup dried basil
1/2 tsp allspice
2 T dried thyme
1 1/2 tsp dried marjoram
1 T fresh ground white pepper
2 T fresh ground black pepper

Process rosemary in a food processor or use a mortar and pestle, mix all ingredients, store in sealed container. 6 months.

All Purpose Spice Rubs:

Ingredients

1/3 cup coarse salt

1/4 cup packed light-brown sugar

1/4 cup paprika

2 tablespoons ground black pepper

2 tablespoons dried oregano

2 tablespoons dried thyme leaves

1 tablespoon cayenne pepper (optional)

Directions

  1. In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients, using your hands to break up the sugar.

 

 

 

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