It’s Christmas Eve! I am excited to say that it snowed here in Montana, finally. I was starting to worry there would be no white Christmas. Of course, it snowed in October but we are used to having a few feet of the cold stuff here in December. In all honesty, my Christmas spirit is just about used up this year. I’m still enjoying the Christmas lights but there is something about having a tree corpse in your living room after it has dried up and moved on, if you know what I mean. I have watched almost too many Christmas movies and definitely ate too many Christmas treats.
This is the first year ever that I have made Christmas cookies and candy and gave them as gifts. It was a lot of work! And I think I gained fifteen pounds. My mom and I picked out some recipes and gathered the ingredients. All of these recipes are on my Pinterest board labeled Everything Christmas. Follow me on Pinterest!
Peanut Butter Blossoms were the favorite with my kids. The peanut butter cookie dough has SO MUCH sugar in it, and then you roll it in sugar and then you top it with a Hershey’s Kiss for, you guessed it, more sugar. These were by far the easiest cookies to make. Just mix it up, roll it up into balls, sugar it, bake it, and add candies.
Peppermint Bark is a Christmas treat that I’ve always loved to devour but never actually took the time to realize what it even is. I can’t believe, it’s just chocolate chips and candy canes. The only issues with this one is that you have to smear the melted chocolate into a thin layer on some wax paper and let it set in the fridge. Then, you smear some white chocolate on top of that with candy cane sprinkles and let that set, too. Once everything is hardened you just crack it up into shards. Messy, but well worth it!
Then, was my second attempt ever at Gingerbread Cookies! The first time I made gingerbread cookies they came out so hard they would crack a tooth before you know it. Overcooked, I think. This time the gingerbread dough was beautiful and the finished cookies turned out just the right thickness to be soft and chewy. Mother thought the ginger flavor a little strong but we did have some frosting. The most disappointing part of these cookies was the frosting. By this time, we had been baking five hours and had no patience for Royal Icing. As much as I would’ve liked beautifully decorated gingerbread men, I iced a few and they looked terrible. So, the others just went without.
Divinity is an old fashioned candy that I haven’t eaten in years. I remember it tasting like heaven melting in your mouth and it actually turned out great. I learned from my original Adventures in Cooking post that having the necessary equipment is important. For this candy we had to buy a candy thermometer and used it quite successfully. The only thing I didn’t have was a paddle attachment for my mixer. I decided the whisk attachment might aerate the candy too much and I opted to hand mix. Next time, I might just try the mixing attachment because we stirred, and stirred, and stirred and…………stirred. Thank God, there were two of us because we took turns stirring until our arms were spent and then we stirred some more. We got it right, though. Divinity can be tricky because you have to mix it until it thickens enough to set up properly. One of my nephews thought it was too sweet, but I thought it was just right. It’s supposed to be that way and we made sure to add pecans.
Fudge was another Christmas candy that I had eaten every year but never made. I was quite delighted to find that it, too was only chocolate chips and milk. Simply stir the chocolate and evaporated milk until melted, stir in nuts and pour in a pan. It was so easy to make and so easy to eat!
Here is our finished product!
I hope you enjoyed my Holiday Edition of Adventures in Cooking. Although it was a lot of work, it was definitely worth it to taste test everything and send off our little care packages of victory.
It is worth mentioning that a few of these candies and cookies are not very time consuming and only have 3-4 ingredients. If you’re scared, don’t be! Next year, I’m making these beauties that my friend Kylene reminded me of.
My grandma used to make these every year with red hot candies and I forgot all about them!
Thank you for stopping by! What is your favorite Christmas treat?