…Allie Maki Maya with this Oregon inspired coffee laced recipe:
Coffee Toffee with Oregon Hazelnuts
1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) butter
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt (or a heaping 1/4 teaspoon flaky sea salt)
1 1/2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips, or 6 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts (toasted, skinned and cooled) or another nut of your choiceLine a small baking sheet (mine are 9×13, to fit in my puny oven) with parchment paper or a silicon mat and set aside.In medium heavy saucepan (I used a 3-quart) with a candy thermometer attached, melt butter, brown sugar, white sugar, molasses, salt and espresso together over together. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally with a whisk (one that reaches into the corners is especially helpful here) until the temperature approaches 250¯F, at which point you should stir constantly until it reaches 300¯F.Pour immediately into the prepared baking sheet — you can spread it more evenly with a offset or silicon spatula but don’t worry if you have neither. Sprinkle the chocolate chips over the toffee and let them sit for a minute until soft, then spread the chocolate evenly over the candy base. Sprinkle the chocolate with chopped hazelnuts and then, if you’re as impatient as we are, you can slide the sheet onto a cooling rack in the freezer until the toffee is set.
Break into pieces and store in an airtight container. If you’re kitchen runs warm, you might prefer to keep it in the fridge so the chocolate doesn’t get soft.
Aria Clements scored a bonus pair of box seats because, well, December 8th is her birthday!
Here’s Aria’s recipe:
Boozy Fruit-Bread Pudding
(a cross between fruit cake and bread pudding)
Beat together really well.
Add in 2 1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 cup spiced rum (I use Captain Morgan’s or Kraken)
In an oven-safe pot, tear up a loaf of bread. I don’t bother with the regular stuff for this (we’re lovers of Dave’s Killer Bread and only use that, except for this pudding), just a cheapie loaf of white or “wheat” bread. You don’t need to be precise. Add in a cup of candied fruits. If it’s the full pieces, chop it up.
Pour the egg mixture over the bread and fruits and let it soak in. Mix it up good. It’s okay if the bread breaks up.
Place in the oven at 350 for 45 minutes or until set. I don’t bother preheating the oven for this.
In a sauce pot on the stove, simmer together:
1 cup sugar
1 cup of butter or margarine
1 – 1 1/2 cup of rum
Simmer so you don’t burn away the alcohol. Simmer until the sugar’s melted and the sauce has thickened. Try not to slurp all the sauce before the pudding is finished. It’s hard. Believe me.
Cover the sauce until the pudding is done. It’ll cool a bit, and that’s okay. The heat of the pudding will warm it back up.
You know what to do from there.
Hawaiian Wedding Cake
2 eggs beaten, 2c. sugar, 2 c. flour, 1 tsp vanilla, 2 tsp soda, 7 oz. chopped pecans, 1-20 oz. can crushed pineapple
9/13 ungreased cake pan, bake 40 mns at 350
FROSTING: 8 oz pkg cream cheese softened, 1 stick margarine, 1 c. granulated sugar, 1 tsp vanilla
From Alyssa Lawrence:
From Christine Dedrickson:
Grandmother’s Favorite Christmas Jello
(picture shown is without crushed pineapple pieces)
Lime Jello 6 oz.
Strawberry Jello 6 oz. (or raspberry)
Lemon Jello 6 oz.
1 lb marshmallows (mini prefered)
6 oz soft cream cheese
1 cup miracle whip dressing
2 cups whip cream1) Make first layer of lime jello per package directions. Pour into 13 x 9 x 2 AND 11 x 7 x 2 pans.
Chill until firm.2) Combine juice only from pineapple with water to make a total of 4 cups. Mix with lemon jello package in large
sauce pan. Add marshmallows and melt on low heat stiring often.
3) In mixing bowl, combine cream cheese and miracle whip blend with mixer until smooth. Add pineapple. After marshmallows
are completely melted add cream cheee mixture. Stir until completely melted and blended with no lumps.
Transfer to bowl and Cool in frigerator until no longer hot, but NOT set. After cool to touch, pour onto lime layer and chill to firm.
(Must be cool or it will melt lime layer)
4) Make strawberry jello as per package directions. Cool in frigerator until no longer hot, but NOT set.
After cool to touch, pour onto pineapple layer and chill to firm.
Grandma’s Cranberry Salad
1 bag of ground fresh cranberries soaked in 1 cup of sugar
one can of crushed pineapple
Fold in whipped cream.
From Layla Lexy:
One package Oreos (any flavor, mint ones are great)
One 8 oz package cream cheese
Candy bark (any flavor)
From Heather Tibby McDowell:
California Chocolate Trifle
1- Devil’s food cake mix, prepared as directed (Bake in 9” rounds)
2 – 3 ounce boxes instant chocolate pudding, prepared with only 3 cups of milk
16 ounce container whipped topping or 1 pint cream, whipped
8 small chocolate covered toffee bars, frozen & chopped finely (Whitman’s toffee squares work awesome)Preparation:
Cut cooled cake into large chunks (If you bake the cake in the 9” rounds there is no need to chop, just cut to fit and it works perfect).
Blend Kahlua into pudding.
In glass trifle bowl, layer 1/2 cake, 1/2 pudding mixture, 1/2 whipped topping, 1/2 chopped candy.
From Halie Steward:
Steward Sugar Cookies
Preheat oven to 375
Add 1/2 butter or margarine
3/4 cups of sugar
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups of flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon saltThen mix together well
Roll into balls
Cut with cookie cutters
Spray pan with cooking spray then place cookies 2 inches apartBake for 8-12 minutes then frost and decorate
My family has had a candy recipe that we have made for more than 40 years. I have very fond memories of being a child and going over to Grandmas to make this wonderful treat about a week before Christmas. We would throw on Grandpa’s Christmas records, decorate the tree, and all the women would gather in the kitchen…young and old alike…to make the Christmas Divinity. It’s a challenging recipe to learn, which is probably why the girls were all taught to make it when we were pretty young.
Here is the recipe:
1/3C corn syrup.
Combine these ingredients in a saucepan, and stir until sugar is completely dissolved. Bring it to a boil, stirring constantly. Once it boils stop stirring and let it reach hard candy stage…250 degrees on a candy thermometer. Meanwhile, in a clean, dry mixer bowl, beat 2 eggs whites until they form stiff peaks. Now take the syrup and pour it very slowly in a steady stream over the egg whites, beating it constantly until it again holds a peak and just begins to lose its gloss. Stir in 1t. vanilla, food coloring and 1 cup of nuts if desired. Spoon it onto the waxed paper and let them sit until cool.
My grandma always made several batches in green, pink, white and blue. Some with nuts, some without, and we would include them in gift plates passed out to our neighbors. It’s my favorite Christmas memory!
From Blue Ackerman:
fresh seasonal fruits (or canned, dried or frozen if other not available)
Mix with a few dollops of full fat organic sour cream (a plain coconut milk version (like yoghurt) might be available if non dairy is needed)
Top with toasted coconut, toasted almond slivers and sprinkled with a few dried cranberries and blueberries.
Layer and Served in a pretty glass. Easy, elegant and healthy.
From Nina Landey:
5 squares unsweetened chocolate
3 sticks butter
2 cups sugar
1 cup flour
( add nuts, coconut, or choc chips as you like!)
Melt chocolate and butter in double boiler. When melted, add flour. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine eggs,sugar and vanilla. When, choc mixture has cooled, add it to the bowl, and combine. Bake at 350 in a greased 9×12 pan. I came up with this recipe as a teenager and it became a holiday tradition. Now, my kids leave these out on Christmas Eve for the Reindeer!
Happy Baking Everyone!
P.S. Don’t forget to purchase your tickets to George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker by November 30th to save $10 off any performance in areas 1 -5 with the special offer code EARLYBIRD. Get your tickets here.