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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Christmas Food

Next to Christmas music, Christmas food is something that helps to get me in the spirit of the season. Mostly, this means that there's a lot of baking, candy making, and general eating of desserts and other deliciousness.

First, there are caramels. These are delicious. The first time Nate and I attempted to make caramels, we made them with some friends, thinking that they'd be easy and fun. Well, they were easy...but they took for.....ev......er. Seriously, we were adding like, 1/4 cup liquid from this 6 cup mixture and then it had to rise to the right temperature. The first attempt took like 3 hours total. We did end up with a mountain of caramel, but it was so much work...I was scared to try again.

Then, this year, I googled, "easy caramel recipe" and found this baby. In my opinion, it worked out just as well as the long, hard, expensive-ish one. Also, it took less time, and fewer ingredients--just make sure that you really do get it to the soft ball stage.

Next, there are cookies. I'm sure the rest of you out there have already discovered this, but cake mix cookies are the easiest thing ever. I've never made them until like, last week, and now, I wonder why. I made some devil's food cake cookies with semi-sweet chocolate chips...they were delicious. Think of the other combinations you could do though! Butterscotch chips and carrot cake cookies! Funfetti and m&m's! Chocolate and mint chips! Mmmm.

Me with the Linzer Cookies

We also made Linzer cookies this year--they're a bit more complicated, but they sure are pretty. When making these, just make sure that the shape you cut out in the middle leaves you enough dough to transfer to the cookie sheet...or better yet, transfer the base shape (like a circle, perhaps) to the sheet, and then cut the center part out of it. You can also use any jelly you please with these, and the bigger variety of jellies you use, the bigger the variety of colors you end up with.

We've also made some banana bread, some rolls, and tonight we had Orange Julius' (Orange Julii?) for dessert. These were all fantastically good--and the rolls freeze and re-heat really, really well. Still on the list of festive foods to try: fudge (any good recipes out there?) and a couple of cheese balls. This is in addition to whatever we have for Christmas Dinner...which will either be ham, and then some other good stuff, or hospital food. :)


  1. You are amazing!! Those cookies look delicious! I have a great and easy fudge recipe. I'll email it to you! Love you!! Mom M

  2. The cookies look great! I tried fudge one year, and just be sure you have a real candy thermometer, regular ones don't go high enough. The fudge I did made a TON, but the first batch was a failure and wouldn't even mix together, and then would never turn hard. Anyway, I'm sure you'll find a good recipe. I love allrecipes.com, great finds there. Hopefully your bun in the oven will be done soon too :) Merry Christmas!

  3. The cookies are lovely! (and so are you!)

    Hope you're feeling well! We'll be anxious to hear if you do if fact eat Christmas dinner in the hospital =)

    P.S. My mother in law has an AMAZING fudge recipe. I'll have to get it from her and pass it along to you.

  4. OK - here's the fudge recipe. It's super yum!

    1 Pint whipping cream
    4 cups sugar
    boil to 230 degrees ( I think I got my candy thermometer at the $1.00 store)
    take off heat then add:
    2 cubes of real butter broken up
    and three large Hershey bars broken up ( the Symphony bars aren't bad either)
    stir away and melt away then add nuts if you like
    pour into a 9X13 wax paper lined pan
    put in freezer or refrig. to set
    After cool cut, wrap and store in refrigerator.