Tuesday, December 13, 2011


Things are going almost to smooth with the Christmas shopping this year. I only have about three smallish gifts yet to buy. May buy a few more little stocking stuffer gifts while shopping for them, but I'm about finished. Normally I don't get finished until only one or two days before Christmas.

My cookie and candy making are close to the finish line also. Now the problem of staying out of them so I don't have to start over again. In a house with two cookie monsters that is hard. I swear I hear them calling my name.

The son has yet to make the Pizzelle's. They are all I ask him to make. I just can't understand it, but he uses the exact same recipe I do yet his taste better than mine. He also makes the best Chicken Cacciatore, but getting him to make it is worse than pulling teeth from a snake. He says he doesn't like it...

I've always liked the taste of peanut brittle, but it was so tiresome to make. You always had to keep an eye on a candy thermometer and stir it constantly to be careful not to scorch it, which would ruin it with a nasty flavor.
But I did find a recipe that takes the worry away. I tried it when my kids were young and still use it today. The same recipe can be used with peanuts or cashews. And of course the more fattening cashews are my favorite.

I have no idea where I found the recipe. I found it before I had the internet, but it too is probably out here somewhere. I will share that with you today, yet again it's not my recipe, but one I found somewhere.

Microwave Cashew or Peanut Brittle

1 1/2 cups roasted unsalted cashews or peanuts
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda

Line a baking sheet or shallow baking pan with foil. Butter the foil and a metal spatula, set aside.
Combine nuts, sugar, corn syrup and salt in a 6-cup microwave-safe bowl. Cook, uncovered, 4 minutes on High, stir well and cook 4 minutes longer on High. Mixture will be boiling. (This stuff is like lava, so be careful)
Stir in butter and vanilla.
Microwave on High 2 minutes.
Add baking soda and stir until light and foamy. Quickly pour into prepared pan. Spread to about 1/4 inch thickness with spatula.
Let cool, then break into pieces.
Store in airtight container.
Makes 1 pound.

I like to make no less than one batch of each and usually more to add with the tins and boxes of cookies I like to give as gifts. Like the cookies, the brittle is always appreciated. There are just so many people who appreciate sweets.

I think I've only met one person during my life who said they didn't like sweets, yet I would often see him snitching cookies and homemade candies...

Be sure to clean up your tools immediately. When this cools it takes more work than you can imagine to clean off.

Most of the recipes I use for cookies are the same as the recipes you find on chocolate chip bags or Oatmeal containers. Only thing I do differently is I use butter where some call for that canned grease. Grandma used butter and I really do think it leaves you with a better buttery flavor.

I do still have two more recipes that are not on any containers and I'll share them with you soon.

Once again, have a fantastic cookie and candy making day!

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