I’ve got one more holiday season recipe for you, even though Christmas has passed. This recipe is worth making year round, though, so I don’t feel too bad that I didn’t get the post written in time.
These are scrumptious but very rich (like so many other holiday foods), so I suggest cutting them into fairly small squares. My mister would disagree because I’m sure he would eat a whole batch if left alone with it. He’d probably get a tummy ache in return, though.
I hope all of you had the chance to see your nearest and dearest this holiday season and got to have some Christmas cheer.
Peanut Butter Confetti Squares
(the way my mum makes them)
1/4 Cup butter
1/2 Cup peanut butter (I prefer smooth, but feel free to mix it up!)
1 Cup butterscotch chips
8 oz multicolour mini marshmallows
- Set a small pot over low heat, and melt together the butter, peanut butter and butterscotch chips. Stir attentively, because this mixture burns easily, until smooth.
- Remove the pot from the heat and let it cool. You may be tempted to sneak a taste now, but wait until it has cooled a fair bit because though it is delectable it is lava at this point. You’ve been warned. Letting this mixture cool also stops the marshmallows from melting when they get mixed in.
- Mix the marshmallows in until they are well coated with the sauce.
- Spread the mixture into a 9′ x 9′ pan (or smaller if you want a taller square) and allow to cool before cutting into squares.
Mr says these are one of his favorite things ever since he was pretty small. And he verified my above statement, he will eat these way past the point of comfortable fullness.
This time last year: Cranberry Pear Pie
And the year before that: Christmas Chocolate Truffle Trio
Hello lovely readers, I’m looking to hear your opinions on this one:
Have you ever been subject to the ”it’s good, but it’s just not as good as my mom’s”? (Insert other name here: Grandma’s, cousin John’s, Penelope’s)
In Mr’s family there are these rolled out oatmeal cookies that they traditionally have at Christmas. His mum makes them from a recipe that came from her grandma, Mr’s great-grandma. Being that these are the years that Mr and I are going to form the Christmas traditions for our little family, I thought it would be good to get the recipe and include it in the list of Christmas Baking recipes.
Mr’s mum, Heather, gave me the recipe and some very helpful hints: the cookies don’t work if you switch out a different fat for the lard, and never ever EVER add cinnamon. (You know what I said about listening to your Mum? The same goes for future mother in laws, they’re smart cookies too!)
Doing my best to not mess with tradition, I weighed carefully, measured precisely, and followed the recipe to the tee. Hurray for cookie cutter fun, and hurray for some mightily tasty cookies!
Mr was very pleased with the results of our labors; he helped me roll them out and cut out the shapes. And when Mr’s parents came over, they were as well. But then Tom, Mr’s dad, said: “These are good, but they aren’t quite the same as Heather’s.”
Now I’m not upset, really I’m not. Part of me is wondering could it be that despite my care I just did it a little differently, or do you think that they’re different simply because they know Heather didn’t make them? Maybe I copied the recipe out wrong?
The differences in variables are pretty minimal; we’ve got the same recipe and I followed it closely. I mixed them up in a metal bowl, maybe she uses a glass one. Superstitious bread makers claim the type of bowl you use effects your dough, maybe it is the same for these cookies. Could that really be the difference though? Maybe I worked in too much flour in the rolling out process, but the recipe directs you to use flour to make the rolling process easier.
I guess, what I’m really trying to ask is: Do you think that the person making a recipe can effect how it turns out? Is it that the minute ways in which things are done differently by different people that leads to the food coming out noticeably different? Or is it more psychosomatic, our brains tell us that what you’re eating can’t be the same because it didn’t come from the same person so we taste them differently?
These things have been mulling around in my head; I’d be curious to hear what you think.
Rolled Oatmeal Cookies
(recipe from Grandma Chegwin)
2 Cups brown sugar, packed
1/2 pound lard
1/2 pound margarine
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
4 Tbsp hot water
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp salt
2 Cups flour
5 Cups oatmeal
- Cream together the brown sugar, lard and margarine.
- Dissolve the baking soda into the hot water.
- Mix the baking soda-water and vanilla into the creamed mixture.
- Work in the dry ingredients.
- Put the dough in the fridge to cool.
- Roll the dough out thin, using flour to keep it from becoming a sticky mess, and then cut out shapes.
- Bake in a 350 ° oven for 8-11 minutes, or until golden brown and fragrant.
- Eat plain, or sandwiched together with raspberry jam.
These are such a lovely cookie. I know you might be thinking, oatmeal cookie – kind of mundane, but this is not a mundane cookie. They’re crispy without being overly crunchy. The oatmeal toasts up during the baking and makes the cookies almost nutty. They stand up pretty well to being dunked in milk.
If you don’t know what you’re going to leave for Santa this year, I can tell you that he would like a rolled oatmeal cookie.
Mr says: These literally taste like Christmas to me. A holiday classic!
This time last year: Caesar Cocktail
And the year before: Lemon Roasted Potatoes
The hours are winding down, the year is almost over, a new one is about to start.
2011 has been quite a year; we’ve experienced some losses and met some new and fabulous people. We’ve traveled a little bit, as well as settled into our sweet little house. I graduated from University. There have been so many fabulous meals shared with friends and family. I’m a little bit sad to see 2011 go, but it’s exciting to look forward. It is impossible to know what 2012 will hold but I am so very excited to find out.
To all of you, thank you so much for being here. This project is such a source of joy for me, and you’re all a part of it. Happy New Year!
Chocolate Truffles Trio Version 2.0
(basic recipe is the same as last year’s, flavor options have changed)
1/2 Cup whipping cream
1 Tbsp honey
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp chai masala, or 1 1/2 tsp pomegranate molasses, or 2 sprigs of mint
10 oz chocolate
1 Cup cocoa, for rolling
- Combine cream, honey, and salt in a bain marie, stirring until dissolved.
- Add flavoring ingredient of choice and let steep for 5 minutes. For the mint truffles, strain the mint out before continuing.
- Stir in chocolate until melted and the mixture is smooth.
- Transfer mixture into a clean resealable container and refrigerate until firm (~2 hours).
- Using a melon baller or your hands, roll out the hardened truffles into small balls. Roll the balls in cocoa powder so that they will not stick together.
This year’s flavors were a big hit! Pomegranate came out as a strong favorite, which surprised me because I was worried that it would have been the weirdly received flavor if there would be one. The flavor of the chai truffles was really great, but the chai masala (chai spice mixture) made them a little bit grainy. I’m going to have to find a way to get the flavor in but somehow remove the powder. But how does one strain out a fine powder? Any advice out there? The mint is a classic pairing with chocolate. Yum! Next year we’re going to have to make more so that we can have some for ourselves left after gifting.
Mr says: making truffles as a team makes it a much easier and faster process. Pomegranate was my favorite! Happy New Year!
This time last year: Christmas Truffle Trio (Version 1.0)