Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Something Sweet!

Well the countdown to Xmas is here! Only 2 shopping days....I did a bit of shopping in one of my favorite store Le Panier (The Basket) it is located in Pointe Claire village and it always reminds me of cool store you would find in New England in the 70's.

OOoooh Xmas goodies! In the background some bulk Green Mountain Coffee (one of the only places I know who carries it outside of New England)

I want some of that!

Those penguins are just too cute :)

Table accessories perfect for your Xmas tablescapes.

It's always a magical visit; even if I don't buy anything ;)

This evening I was busy fixing some sweet treats as gifts and for snacking!

My first recipe is perfect for us who watch what we eat (most of the time at least)
It's fat free....and it packs a crunchy,minty satisfying crunch!

Peppermint Meringue Kisses

Heat oven to 175F and put racks in top of oven

4 room temperature egg whites
1 cup sugar
1 pinch cream of tartar
1 pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 finely crushed  peppermint candy canes

Beat egg whites until soft peaks form, add salt and cream of tartar. Beat until combined, add sugar and beat until disolved, add vanilla and beat until combined.
Drop by teaspoon on a baking sheet covered with aluminum or parchment. They will look all spikey and uneven, and that's what you want. Sprinkle with crushed candy cane and put in oven. With 4 egg whites I make  about 60 kisses which cover 1 1/2 cookie sheet. You need to cook the kisses for 2 hours with the oven door ajar. After 1 hour I rotate the cookie sheets, i.e: The one on top goes on the lower rack and vice & versa. After 2 hours let the oven door ajar and turn it off. Let cool.
I usually do this in the evening so I let them cool over night.

I go the meringue recipe more than 15 years ago in the Good Housekeeping. They have been a hit in my family since then.....A good sugar buzzzzzz

Speaking of sugar buzz! This is my famous caramel corn. I got the recipe in 2008 from a blog I still follow. The Flowering Dogwood is a life blog but mostly about food. You can read it HERE . As for the recipe it's pretty deep in the archives....but I'm pasting here for all of you to enjoy!

Caramel Corn

2 cups brown sugar (packed)
1 cup butter
1/2 cup dark corn syrup
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
5 quarts popped corn

Pop corn and keep warm in two shallow pans (however, I recommend using one large roasting pan versus cookie sheets) in 250 degree oven. Combine sugar, butter, syrup and salt in sauce pan on stovetop. Bring to a boil slowly and boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in baking soda. Pour immediately over popped corn and mix well. Place back in oven and bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.Let cool and break up. Store in container. Freezes well.

Ok it is a bit time consuming but TOTALLY ADDICTIVE! Oh yes it's that bad (GOOD), I always have to scold Dan to stop eating some,so we'll have enough for the gifts. Ok it is sooo good that you might see us on Intervention, no joke! I usually make 2 batches and it covers my snacking and gift giving needs.
 Thanks again to Liz (from the Flowering Dogwood) for that delicious recipe.

I also made dough dor some Pfeffernusse and Xmas shortbread tonight, I'm off to watch a bit of tv and then off to bed I have another crazy cooking day tomorrow :)

Sleep tight!


Linda @ A La Carte said...

That store is awesome! I would just enjoy visiting there! I love that caramel corn.

P. said...

Ha, great minds think alike! I made and posted my favorite caramel corn recipe this afternoon too! I'm going to have to try those peppermint meringue kisses. They look great.

Maureen said...

The meringues look good! I made peppermint bark - much easier than meringue.

Enjoy & Joyeux Noel!