Sunday, December 29, 2013

Christmas Goodies

As always this year the month of December was spent mainly in the kitchen creating lots of candies to give to loved ones.
This year we did truffles, caramels, salted caramel candy (a.k.a. Christmas Crack), and fudge.
I do have a link on my website that shows some of the candy creations I have made in previous years (you can find that at, but this year I figured I would compile some of my favorite recipes from 2014.
So here are the recipes for my famous caramels (everyone loves'em, especially dipped in chocolate!), Christmas Crack (courtesy of the find creators over at Craftster), and the yummiest PB fudge ever.
I hope you enjoy! I know they are a little late for the holiday season this year but save these for next year (or Valentine's Day, birthdays, or any days that end in "y"!).

 Here is the link to the original recipe:

 Original recipe makes 4 to 5 dozen caramels


  1. Grease a 12x15 inch pan.
  2. In a medium-size pot, combine sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, evaporated milk, whipping cream, and butter. Monitor the heat of the mixture with a candy thermometer while stirring. When the thermometer reaches 250 degrees F (120 degrees C) remove the pot from the heat.
  3. Stir in vanilla. Transfer mixture to the prepared pan and let the mixture cool completely. When cooled cut the Caramel into small squares and wrap them in wax paper for storage.

You NEED a candy thermometer for this recipe. Also, if you want the caramels to be able to be solid at room temperature you need to boil them for a minute at 250oF, until the caramel darkens a bit (but stop before it burns!). 
Since I usually dip my caramels in chocolate I like them a bit softer so I take them off the heat when it reaches the max temperature. This will NOT give you a solid caramel candy, however.

Once recipe makes A LOT of caramels. I made two batches this year and I still have almost a pound of caramel in my freezer waiting to be dipped in chocolate.

This is what the caramel looks like at 250oF, right after it is poured into the dish.

This is what the caramel looks like after it has set, if you let it boil a bit longer. Note the darker colour.

Christmas Crack - Salted Caramel Candy

This recipe is super cheap, quick, easy, and makes great gifts (and no one will ever know how cheap, quick, easy it is!).

The original recipe for this is from Craftster and can be found at this link.

1 sleeve saltine (soda) crackers - I typically use salted.
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup butter (salted)
1 11.5 oz. package chocolate chips
3/4 cup chopped pecans or almonds (optional)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and line a 10" x 15" cookie sheet with foil (the kind of sheet that has raised edges!).  Spray with Pam, or grease VERY lightly with butter.  Cover the cookie sheet with a single layer of crackers.  Bring butter and brown sugar to a boil.  Boil for 3 minutes, stirring with a whisk.  Pour over the saltines, and try to spread it as evenly as possible.  Place in the oven and bake for 5 minutes.  When you remove it, the caramel mixture will be molten and boiling; allow to cool until you can see the crackers distinctly, which will have shifted while baking.  Push them back into order with a fork or knife. 
Sprinkle the chocolate chips over the toffee and let sit for about 5 minutes to melt. Do not wait too long to pour the chips as this can create problems!
Once melted spread chocolate evenly.  If desired, sprinkle on pecans/almonds and press lightly into the chocolate.*  Let cool a bit and then transfer to fridge to harden.

And now, for the last recipe, 
I used this recipe, but made a fairly dramatic change to it.

Original recipe makes 1 - 8x8 inch pan        

(I also use peanut butter chips instead of peanut butter because it is a lot easier.)


  1. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in brown sugar and milk. Bring to a boil and boil for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Stir in peanut butter and vanilla. Pour over confectioners' sugar in a large mixing bowl. Beat until smooth; pour into an 8x8 inch dish. Chill until firm and cut into squares.

After it is ready, I cut it into chunks and package it up all pretty for Christmas presents :) 

Happy holidays and wishing you and yours all the best in 2014!

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