A Sweet Christmas
The Gift of Food
There are certain recipes that scream to be made at certain times of the year, Christmas especially. We all have our favorites that we look forward to making and of course eating.
Baked goods also make great presents for others. Put them in a decorated tin laced with tissue and wrap a lovely bow around it and you're ready to make someone's day.
Here is a selection of some of my favorite "Christmas only" recipes that make great gifts for other or a sweet treat for your family. And, of course, they are also good at any other time of the year!
Citation: unless otherwise stated images are copyright M. E. Wood.
Do You Bake For Christmas?
Bailey's Chocolate Truffles
12 oz semi sweet chocolate (I use the little blocks of baking chocolate from the bulk store)
8 oz cream cheese
3 cups icing sugar
4 tbsps Bailey's Irish Cream
1/3 cup ground hazelnuts (I also get this from the bulk store)
Melt chocolate on low heat. Stir often to keep from burning to bottom of pan. When completely melted set aside.
Beat cream cheese until smooth. Blend in sugar a 1/4 cup at a time. Add melted chocolate and Bailey's being sure to mix well. Put in refrigerator for one hour.
Here's the fun part. Scoop out by the tsp and shape into balls. It is important not to keep in one hand for too long as it will get mushy. Switch back and forth between hands. When it is a smooth ball roll in hazelnuts (I also roll some in leftover icing sugar), set on tray. Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving. The longer they sit the better they taste.
This recipe makes five dozen deliciously addictive truffles.
Some kitchen stuff you might need
Prevents cookies and pasties from over browning.
An excellent tool for cutting bars!
1 cup butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cream of tartar (necessary!)
1/2 tsp brown sugar
2 cups flour
Cream the butter and sugar. Add egg and vanilla. Beat until fluffy. In a separate bowl sift dry ingredients, mix well before adding a third at a time to wet ingredients, mixing well.
Roll into balls in flatten, use in a cookie maker or roll out and use cookie cutter. All work well. Bake in oven on parchment paper lined cookie sheets at 300 degrees F. Keep and eye on them and remove when they begin to color.
A Cookbook You Might Like
"The Family Christmas Cookbook contains not only interesting stories about each recipe, but also ideas for how to include children in preparing them and extra pages for adding family recipes or traditions. While bringing generations together, families can brighten the holidays with delicacies ranging from English Plum Pudding, Norwegian Sandbakkels, and Swedish Lucia Buns to Mexican Bunnuelos, Brazilian Lace Wafers, and African Kanya, all featuring updated recipes."
1 1/2 cups of cornstarch
1 1/2 cups icing sugar
3 cups flour
1 pound butter, softened
Blend all ingredients. Cut into two section and roll dough flat. Use different shaped cookie cutters press out cookies. Leave as is or decorate with diced cherries. Alternative is to roll by hand and press into cookie sheet with 1/4 cherry. Bake on parchment covered cookie sheet at 325 degrees until lightly golden. This recipe makes approximately six dozen shortbreads.
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup butter
1 bag of chocolate chips
1 package of saltines
Line a 9 x 13 inch deep cookie sheet with tinfoil making sure to press it into the corners and sides without tearing it. Grease tinfoil with a light coating of oil wiping off excess with paper towel.
Line this tray with the saltines. One package should completely cover the tray. In a saucepan melt butter and sugar. Bring to boil for 2 - 3 minutes. Carefully pour over the saltines making sure to cover them all.
Put in a 400 degree oven for five minutes. It will bubble like crazy. Remove from oven and sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over tray. Take a spoon and spread chocolate as it melts. Once the chips have completely melted and you have have spread it over saltines, refrigerate until hardened. Break into pieces and store in air tight container in fridge or freezer.
2 cups of milk chocolate chips
1 tbsp butter
1/2 cup raisons
1/2 cup slivered almonds
Melt butter and chocolate over low heat in a saucepan, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in raisons and almonds. Drop by tablespoon full on to a cookie sheet covered with waxed paper. Chill in fridge.
1 cup peanut butter
3/4 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups oatmeal
1 1/2 cups peanuts, chopped
1 cup chocolate chips
Melt chocolate chips in saucepan. Stir in peanut butter and honey. Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Press into a 9" x 13" pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Refrigerate overnight and cut into squares the next day.
Store baking in freezer and take out what is needed one hour prior.
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups flower
1/2 cup icing sugar
1/2 cup glazed cherries
This recipe is excellent if you have a cookie maker but also works well if you just drop by the spoonfuls onto the cookie sheet. Cream butter and sugar. Gradually add flour and continue to mix until light and fluffy. Prepare cookies, decorate with cherries and bake in 324 degree F oven for approximately ten minutes or until lightly browned. Cool and rack. Tastes wonderful when served from freezer. This recipe makes about three dozen cookies.
Chocolate Marshmallow Roll
1 cup icing sugar
4 squares of semi-sweet baking chocolate
2 tbsp butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup chopped nuts
2 cups colored marshmallows
1/2 cup fine coconut
Beat the egg and icing sugar while the chocolate and butter are melting in a saucepan. Add the melted chocolate and vanilla to the sugar mixture stirring until mixed. Let cool a few minutes. Gently stir in nuts and marshmallows.
Separate this mixture into three. Shape each one into a long roll about 1 1/2" in diameter. Roll each one in the coconut. Put all three rolls on a tray in freezer. When ready to serve cut into 1/2" slices.
Easy & Tasty Fruitcake
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 eggs, slightly beaten
3 cups mincemeat (I get this from the bulk store)
1 cup Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk
2 cups chopped candied fruit (from bulk store)
1 cup walnuts, chopped
Grease two 9" x 5" x 3" loaf pans. In a small bowl stir together flour, baking soda. In a large bowl combine eggs, mincemeat, milk, candied fruit and nuts. Add dry ingredients and mix well.
Divide batter between the pans and bake for an hour and half or until knife comes out clean. Cool completely on wire racks. Wrap well in foil and freeze. It's easy to cut while frozen and can be taken out to thirty minutes prior.
I've even had none "fruitcake" eaters enjoy this one.
1/2 cup butter
1 cup crunchy peanut butter
2 packages butterscotch chips
small package of colored marshmallows
Melt butters and chips over low heat and let cool well. Mix in the marshmallows when they won't melt. Lightly smooth into greased 7" x 11" pan. Cool completely in fridge and cut into small squares.
This recipe is made in two sections.
1/2 cup butter, softened
5 tbsp sugar
5 tbsp cocoa
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups graham wafer crumbs
1 cup fine coconut
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
In a saucepan, melt butter slowly over low heat. While it's melting add sugar, cocoa, vanilla and egg. Continuing stirring until it looks like custard. Set aside. Mix crumbs, coconut and nuts together then add to butter mixture. Combine well. Press into ungreased 8" pan and set aside.
4 tbsp butter
2 tbsp vanilla custard powder
3 tbsp milk
2 cups icing sugar
Cream butter. Add vanilla, custard powder and milk and mix. Add icing sugar and continue to beat until the consistency of icing. Spread with a warm metal spoon over base and allow to harden in fridge.
6 squares of semi-sweet baking chocolate
1 tbsp butter
In a small saucepan melt butter and chocolate over low heat. Spread evenly over the top of the icing filling. Refrigerate and cut into bars when set.
Romantic Food Movies - Five of My Favorites!
Thank you for stopping by A Sweet Christmas Lens. Please tell my readers what sweet treat you look forward to at Christmas. Or leave your holiday greetings. Before you leave be sure to scroll down for more food idea I enjoy.