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Entries in Chocolate (30)

Monday
Oct282013

Salted chocolate caramel apples

It is Halloween week, can you believe it?! October is always such a busy month for us, so Halloween always sneaks up quickly. Elijah has his costume picked out and Sammy has decided that he wants to wear the same robot costume as last year (this boy does NOT like change). Pumpkins have been carved, the corn maze has been visited and caramel apples have been made. This year we went all out on the caramel apples. We made SALTED CHOCOLATE CARAMEL APPLES! The version of caramel apples that will bring you to your knees. I am resisting a trip to the kitchen as I type. HELP!

Through the stems, puncture 4-6 apples (depending on their size) with a popsicle or cookie stick.

Line a baking sheet with wax paper and coat generously with cooking spray. Set aside. 

Pour an 11-oz. bag of caramel bits along with 2 tablespoons of water into a microwave-safe bowl. 

 

 

Heat the bowl in the microwave in 30-second intervals (stirring after each interval) until the caramel is completely melted and free of lumps.

Dip the apples into the melted caramel, turning until thoroughly coated. Place the caramel apples onto the prepared baking sheet. Place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Cut away the "caramel puddle" from the bottoms of the apples (ingest, if desired).

Place a new sheet of wax paper onto a different baking sheet and coat generously with cooking spray.

Pour a 10-oz. bag of dark chocolate into a microwave-safe bowl. Use GOOD quality chocolate for the best results.

Heat in the microwave in 30-second intervals (stirring after each interval) until the chocolate is completely melted and free of lumps.

Dip the caramel apples into the melted chocolate, turning until coated.

Sprinkle sea salt generously over the surface of each apple. Place onto the prepared baking sheet and place back into the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Serve at room temperature or chilled, sliced into sections or whole.

You will not be able to resist these! Happy week of Halloween!

Printable recipe: Salted chocolate caramel apples

Monday
Jul222013

Berry s'mores

My 6-year-old detests berries. He has struggled with textural issues his whole little life, and just cannot bring himself to put certain foods into his mouth. The other day I asked him (yet again) if he would be willing to give berries another try. He said, "But Mom! There's too much juice and the bumps are gross." He is so missing out! We'll get there. Then I had a thought! I would put them inside of a treat that he would be unable to resist. S'MORES!

It worked! He gobbled that thing down, bumps, juice and all. Next? Strawberries and blackberries, or maybe mashed blueberries. 

My little boys and I are still on the road. This is Day #14, I believe. In just less than two weeks, we have driven 2,644 miles and met 56 wonderful new friends. We will begin our trek back home on Wednesday. For now, more pool time with good friends!

Tuesday
Feb192013

Chocolate caramel bars

This morning brought mine and my nearly-six-year-old's first snow-shoeing experience. My oldest boy, who did not take his first step until he was three years old, was running around in sub-zero temps with snow shoes strapped to his feet. I don't know that I would have believed this three years ago! I'm a proud mama. And I want more snow-shoeing! Er, maybe when it's 20 degrees warmer outside.

Tomorrow is Elijah's sixth birthday, so I have cupcakes to bake. In the meantime, I will share these delicious bars with you. This recipe comes from my husband's side of the family. After I made this batch, he sank his teeth in and said, "Mmmm, childhood." Gotta love treats that bring back a little piece of childhood.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine:

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup old-fashioned oats

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup butter, softened

Mix until crumbly. Press half of the mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan and bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, combine:

14-oz. bag caramels, unwrapped

1/4 cup milk

Warm over low heat, stirring constantly until caramel is melted and smooth.

Remove the bottom crust from the oven and sprinkle an 11.5-oz. bag of milk chocolate chips evenly over the top.

Pour the melted caramel evenly over the top of the chocolate and top with the remaining flour-oats crumbles.

Bake for an additional 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Let cool completely before serving.

Enjoy! I hope you are staying warm, wherever you are today!

Printable recipe: Chocolate caramel bars

Wednesday
Dec122012

Baby Ruth caramel corn

We made it! It's Day #12 of Twelve Days of Christmas Treats! It went fast, didn't it? I still plan on sharing a few more goodies, but perhaps after a few days off. Any requests?

I have spent a good deal of time thinking about this particular recipe. I wanted to make caramel corn, but not just plain old caramel corn. And then one day I was in the grocery store and I spotted a Baby Ruth candy bar as I waited in the checkout line. I thought about how Baby Ruths are the most underrated candy bar in existence. Have you eaten one recently? They are good. The best! Well, one of the best. And that is how caramel corn and Baby Ruths became one.

I hope you enjoyed my string of treats! It has been a ton of fun posting and of course eating all of it (which is why I sit here at my computer sipping a mean green veggie juice).

Preheat your oven to 275 degrees F. Coat a large, rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside.

Prepare 10-12 cups of popcorn in a large, heavy-duty saucepan. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan, melt 1/2 cup butter over medium heat.

Add:

1/4 cup light corn syrup

1 cup light brown sugar

Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is smooth and amber in color, 4 to 5 minutes.

Remove from the heat and add:

1/2 cup marshmallow creme

1 teaspoon vanilla

Stir until the mixture is free of lumps.

Pour over the popcorn.

Carefully stir with a large spoon until the popcorn is well-coated.

Add:

12.5-oz. package of fun-size Baby Ruth candy bars, unwrapped and coarsely chopped

Carefully fold in the candy bar pieces.

Pour the popcorn onto the prepared baking sheet.

Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, occasionally reaching in to stir and flip the popcorn around.

Remove the baking sheet from the oven and let the popcorn cool for a few minutes. At this point you can either let it harden on the sheet and then break pieces off, or you can form the popcorn into balls (or whatever shape you wish) and then let it harden.

Either way, you are going to love this stuff. 

See you in a few days, friends. 

Printable recipe: Baby Ruth caramel corn

Sunday
Dec092012

Peppermint bark

This Christmas treat was readers' choice, chosen by my Facebook friend Brittany. Great pick! Thanks for the suggestion, Brittany. I had never made Peppermint Bark before. It's easy, simple and addicting.

Before I get to the recipe, it has been snowing in our neck of the woods for just about the entire day. It is gorgeous! The boys had so much fun playing in it. We made a snowman named Charlie, and a fort with a back door. We can't wait to get back out there tomorrow to throw some more snowballs around!

Back to the star of the post, the Peppermint Bark!

Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and set aside.

Pour an 11.5-oz. package of milk or dark chocolate chips into a small bowl and an 11.5-oz. package of white chocolate chips into another small bowl.  

Microwave the milk (or dark) chips in the microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring after each one, until the chocolate is smooth.

Pour onto the prepared baking sheet.

Smooth it out with a spatula and place in the refrigerator for 10 minutes to harden.

Meanwhile, melt the white chips using the same 30-second interval method.

Pour the white chocolate on top of the hardened milk (or dark) chocolate.

Spread evenly with a spatula.

Sprinkle chopped candy canes over the top (approximately 6 large ones) and place back into the fridge until it is completely hardened.

Break into pieces and serve!

Printable recipe: Peppermint bark