candy, diy, food, gifts, homemade

in which i bake and make candy because it’s Christmas and I’m doing the Food 52 Secret Food Swap

It started with this box of samples for a prospective baking customer…and it never stopped. silk samples

These are Ghirardelli chocolate cake squares (not exactly brownies, not as dense) some with melted mini marshmallows. It was also the first time that I ever tried to decorate my baked goods. I need a better pastry bag!

While I didn’t get this customer, someone else came along and tried the cookies and ordered some for after Christmas. So it worked out. However, i still had to bake for Christmas presents.

So this happened:christmastreats1

I’m actually scared f this cabinet now, as I’ve got a lot f stuff in there that I never heard of or ever thought I wanted.  I have flaxseed meal, coconut flour and sugar, and candied fruit peels. Oh! And pectin, because I was going to make fruit jellies, and maraschino cherries, and molasses. It’s amazing. treatspresents1

So I get started on my first project, which was a basic peanut brittle. Except I forgot to buy a candy thermometer and ended up with softer candy than I was supposed to. So I made peanut chews instead. I put raisins and cranberries in half and rolled the the half in coconut flakes. I mean why not, right? treatspresents1a

Then I decided to dip everything in chocolate- which took up most of my chip stock. THEN I got really excited and tried to double broiling method where you melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of water. I never bothered before, but I think it was worth it. treatspresents2

So I basically stayed in the house and made white chocolate, butterscotch, and peanut butter dipped peanut chews. THEN I was like- they’re ugly, so I drizzled semi-sweet melted chocolate chips on them.

It looks like I planned that, right? I was kind of jazzed about the outcome. And I only ate three, but that was for quality control.  I didn’t want to eat any more, because then I couldn’t gift them and I wanted to hear that Iwas brilliant. treatspresents3I was still feeling creative, so I did cookies in the mini-muffin tray, then mini-cupcakes with sprinkles baked in, then Christmas sugar cookies dipped in royal icing and sprinkled with crushed peppermint. THEN I did these pecan turtle bars from my Dinah Shore cookbook. I was just on fire. I could not stop baking.

treatspresents4

THEN I had to wrap everything and I tried to be creative. So much fun. My favorite is the one that I wrapped to look like a piece of candy- photo three. I mean, that is so cute!!! I gave it to someone and they emailed me right away about how much they liked it.

Score!

treatspresents4a

Then it was off to play Santa and drop stuff off. It took two days and I mistakenly gave someone my prized Marc Jacobs shopping bag, but still. I only regret the candied popcorn experiment. I know better now…treatspresents5

Then I had to get my package together for the Food 52 Secret Holiday Food Swap. You get an email with a strangers name and address (leap of faith for all involved, right?) and you’re off. I did a little of everything- plus beauty products. Katherine Cosmetics lip gloss, Bullet Acne Aid, and I even tucked in a tube of Origins Ginger Souffle lotion. It made me feel virtuous.I was so happy when I saw her post on the Food 52 tumblr:

food52

If you want to see more swaps from around the world, look here.

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When people send you pics of the treats you dropped off. I am kind of proud of this presentation! So glad I found those plastic egg cartons- they are perfect for mini-cupcakes! And the candies are wrapped in a recycled makeup jar; I washed it and covered it in brown paper and Christmas ribbon.

treatspresents6But it wasn’t just all me- I actually GOT a present as well! This came from Jessie Pressman, who sent me these goodies from William Sonoma. Let me tell you, I was like a drunken sailor with that Lucero Crushed Meyer Lemon Olive Oil. Delicious.

Next up: Dating Diary returns!!!

xoxo, Faith/Sassy Ethnic Bohemian

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1 thought on “in which i bake and make candy because it’s Christmas and I’m doing the Food 52 Secret Food Swap”

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