Sunday, December 12, 2010

Christmas Goody Making Party!

For years we have been getting together to watch the annual holiday parade downtown, this year it was canceld, big bummer! Aunt Sarah had the idea to get together to make Christmas Goodies instead.

The party was a huge success.

Everyone brought ingredients and supplies to make a recipe or 2 and we all went home with trays and trays of super festive goodies.

I made these Snowball cookies. Cuzzy Jenny informed me they are also called "Sandies" (I didnt think sandies were coated in powdered sugar) I informed her it is winter, so therefore theyre called Snowballs, in the summer, at the beach, she can call them Sandies.

I got the recipe from Annie's Home:
Snowball Cookies (her picture)

The Recipe:
1 c. butter
1/2 c. confectioners' sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla
2 c. sifted flour
1 c. chopped pecans or walnuts
Additional confectioners' sugar (for rolling)

Preheat oven to 375°F. Beat butter and sugar until light and creamy. Add remaining
ingredients, mixing to combine. Use a teaspoonful of dough and roll into small ball. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Cool slightly and roll in confectioners' sugar.

I followed the recipe for the ingredients but I stopped reading the recipe
after that. Sister-in-law Rachel and I decided to add more sugar, about 1/3 a cup because dough didnt taste sweet enough. Also mine turned out larger and not as round because I used a #40
disher (my new favorite kitchen tool) to scoop the balls out on to the cookie
sheet rather than rolling in my hands. Hers were prettier.

my picture: I also made

Cherry Balls
I got the recipe from Echo's of Laughter

These were super easy and a favorite of all the other elves at the party. I doubled the recipe but I should have tripled it!

her picture:
The recipe:
1/2 cup butter
1-1/2 cups coconut
1-1/2 cups icing sugar (powdered sugar)
1-Tablespoon milk or water
1/2 teaspoon almond flavoring
1 small bottle maraschino cherries
graham cracker crumbs

Drain cherries well and pat dry. (we did this while the dough was chilling) Beat butter, coconut, icing sugar, almond flavoring and milk or water with mixer.
Chill for a bit in the fridge.
Using a teaspoon, take portions of dough and wrap around a cherry. Roll in graham cracker crumbs.
I like to place the balls in little decorative paper cups. (this is a super perfect idea! mine are in mini muffin cup size)
This recipe can be made ahead and kept in the freezer for up to 2 months. (i dont think theyd last that long)
Very yummy.
Very messy on the hands. (we learned to eat one all in one big bite)

I intended on buying butter, but forgot, so I used I Can't Believe Its Not Butter. And I COULD believe it WASN'T butter because the dough didnt harden very well, so I recommend using actual butter. They were still tasty though!
One of the commenters on her blog post suggested chocolate cookie crumbs rather than regular graham crackers, and I prefer chocolate, so I went with that idea and had my 4 yr old newphew crush up (toss around a ziplock freezer baggie of) chocolate grahams. for a double recipe he crushed up a full brick (1/3 of the box) + about half of another brick and we had some leftover crumbs.
Aunt Sally did the cherry wrapping, and found it was easier to work with the dough when it was cold, and her warm hands didnt help, making it difficult to work with (probably harder having used imitation butter) so after re-chilling the dough and chilling the cherries, she used a #40 disher to scoop the dough, squished a hole in the middle, added the cherry and covered the cherry. plopped the ball into the cookie crumbs. my picture:
Aunt Sally had the right idea to make semi-homemade goodies after seeing the idea in a magazine.

She brought store bought fudge covered Oreos, cookie icing, sprinkles and cut strips of fruit leather into "ribbon"
with help from my sister Lenna, made these: I named them Oreornaments

She also made some with the chocolate fudge covered Oreos with white icing.

We found when working with 2 colors of icing, let the first color set a few moments before adding the 2nd color to prevent them from melding together. Also for some designs, she practiced the shapes on wax paper first.

After the party, I was relaxing on the couch reading Woman's World Magazine
and actually found an article about a very similar idea, only it includes how to coat the Oreos in chocolate yourself, and other super great goody ideas!

Being as smart as she is, Cuzzy Sabrina had brought some leftover jumbo chocolate chips she had, (just incase we found a use for them), and I had leftover Marachino Cherries, someone had the great idea to combine the 2.
Chocolate Covered Cherries
the recipe:
dunk drained and patted dry marchino cherries in melted chocolate chips, place on wax paper or into paper cups to harden.

(the Cherry Balls Recipe above called for cherries without stems, but if you're making just these, I would recommend getting them on stems for easier dunking and pretty presentation)
Jenny melted the chocolate on a makeshift double boiler (metal mixing bowl over sauce pan of boiling water). We dunked the cherries into the chocolate and out onto wax paper.

after the first batch, I remembered I had some tiny paper cups in my box of Christmasy recipe stuff, and they were the perfect size for the cherries, so for the 2nd batch the cherries were put directly into the paper cups after dunking.

here is a picture of the cherries from the first batch after moving them into the cups, not as pretty as the ones moved directy into the cups.

We really liked the look of the cherries poking through the chocolate.

Mom made:

Peanut Butter Snappies aka Ben's Favorite Cookies

(Recipe here)

Sabrina made:
Rocky Road

we found it would have been easier to start with preroasted and skinned peanuts, roasting and peeling was the most difficult part of the recipe... placing the chunks into paper cups made it much less messy and prettier when we put a few of these babies onto the trays and in boxes and tins.

Aunt Sarah made some most decadent
Lemon Fudge
Lemon fudge combines a silky smooth white chocolate fudge with the vibrant taste of tart lemons. I think this refreshing candy has just the right combination of sweet and sour citrus.
This recipe calls for lemon oil, which is a super-concentrated flavoring with a strong lemon taste. If you don’t have lemon oil, you may substitute lemon extract, but you may want to add more, to taste, to ensure that the lemon flavor is strong enough.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutesIngredients:
•2.25 cups sugar
•3/4 cup evaporated milk
•1.25 cups (9 ounces) white chocolate chips
•1 stick (4 ounces) butter, cut into small pieces
•1 tsp lemon oil
•zest of one lemon
1. Prepare an 8x8 pan by lining it with aluminum foil and spraying the foil with nonstick cooking spray.

2. Combine the sugar and evaporated milk in a medium pan over medium-high heat. Stir continuously while the mixture comes to a boil. Once it is fully boiling, continue to cook, stirring constantly, for six minutes.

3. After six minutes, remove the pan from the heat, and quickly stir in the butter, white chocolate chips, lemon oil, lemon zest, and a few drops of yellow food coloring.

4. Stir quickly to melt the butter and white chocolate, and continue stirring until the fudge is homogenous and smooth.

5. Pour the fudge into the prepared pan. Allow it to set at room temperature for at least two hours. Once set, cut it into small squares to serve. Lemon fudge can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for several weeks.

I had picked up a bag of tiny twists pretzles when Wal-Mart didnt have the square "window" pretzles I wanted for a recipe I saw on My Computer is My Canvas

I will be making these soon:
I ended up finding the square Snyders of Hanover pretzles I wanted at Winco, so I brought the twists along for the party. Aunt Sarah had leftover white chocolate chips from her fudge, so we melted them for my neice Baylee and Sister Lenna to dunk the tiny twist pretzles in, some were sprinkled with peppermint sugar.
Not pictured we also had M&M cookies, Cherry/Strawberry cake mix cookies, and chocolate carmel fudge.

We found it very nice to put most of the items into paper cups when we made up all the trays of goodies for either ourselves or to give as gifts. Cuzzy Jenny brought some store bought candy to go with the goodies on the trays.

Overall, this was a great way to spend an afternoon with friends and family and I hope we continue the tradition even after the Parade comes back into town next year!

1 comment:

  1. wow so delicious thanks for sharing the link to my blog and I ended up picking up a few delicious recipes as well your post looks quite yummy