Last night I worked on my annual holiday cookie tray. I am not a big Christmas cookie kind of gal, but I do love to share a sweet treat. I am all about ease though when creating my holiday goodies and the easier, the better. Within a few hours I had cranked out enough goodies for thirteen goodie
boxes. I included brownies (the boxed variety with a handful of chocolate chips in them, which makes them homemade- of course!), Rice Krispie
treats, microwave peanut brittle, peanut butter & chocolate fudge, hot cocoa mix, and white or dark chocolate pretzels. They looked so beautiful fully assembled and I was so excited to get to be Santa today.
We ran boxes to the usual suspects in our family, but also had goodies for all of the great people who do so much for us. The mail person, our newspaper carrier, my hairdresser, and the firefighters.
I highly recommend, if you have a little boy, taking the time to visit your fire station with a box full of goodies. First of all, seeing the faces of the firefighters light up when they saw all of our treats was a treat in itself. More importantly though, was the light in my son’s eye when they took him around to show him the fire engines. He got to turn the lights on it, pretend to drive, visit each of the trucks, got an honorary junior firefighter badge, and an explanation of how everything worked. I don’t know who was more excited- him or me. Regardless, it was one of the best days of playing Santa I have ever had.
All of the boxes & ribbon were purchased 75% off, during the after the holiday sales. I purchased a gold metallic pen (from the Dollar Tree) and wrote our holiday wishes on each box. The goodies were then assembled into small treat bags, tied with red or green ribbon.
Here are a few of my recipes to share with you!
Microwave Peanut Brittle
1 cup dry roasted peanuts
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup lite corn syrup
1 pinch of salt
1 tablespoon of butter
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
Grease a baking sheet & set aside. In a glass bowl, combine peanuts, sugar, corn syrup, and salt. Cook in microwave for six to seven minutes on high (keep one eye on it to make sure it isn’t bubbling over or burning the nuts)- the mixture should be bubbly and the peanuts should be brown. Stir in butter & vanilla; cook for two to three more minutes. Quickly stir in baking soda, just until the mixture is foamy. Pour immediately onto greased cookie sheet. Let cool for fifteen minutes or until set. Break into pieces.
3 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter
2/3 cup evaporated milk
12 ounces chips (chocolate, peanut butter, butterscotch, white- any combo you want)
1 (7 ounce) jar marshmallow cream
1 tsp vanilla
Mix butter, sugar and milk in a saucepan. Heat until 230 degrees on a candy thermometer. Or if you do not have a thermometer, bring to a rolling boil, stirring constantly for 4 to 5 minutes.
Remove from heat. Stir in candy chips a little at a time until melted. Stir in the rest of the ingredients. Spread into a small greased rectangular cake pan. Cool to room temperature.
Cut into squares.