This post comes to us courtesy of food blogger Margie Tsai.
Some people love Halloween candy. Me, I wait for December, when the holiday candy hits the shelves. I love holiday candy. The allure for me is the perfect pairing of chocolate and peppermint. I have a couple of favorite holiday candies I always pick up whenever I’m near a Williams-Sonoma.
Chocolate-filled Peppermint Snaps are my all time favorite holiday candy. A thin peppermint shell envelopes bittersweet chocolate. Biting into the peppermint produces a satisfying snap. The bittersweet chocolate provides a perfect counterpart to the sweet peppermint. The little rectangles all have different striping patterns on them, giving them a handcrafted look. I use the Peppermint Snaps as decorations on my cupcakes and as a border decoration on my cakes.
The Hot Chocolate is, simply put, amazing. It’s not the powdered instant variety that you find the grocery store. It’s made from real chocolate shavings.
To make it, you heat a cup of milk in a saucepan on the stove until tiny bubbles form on the surface. Then, you add 5 tablespoons of the chocolate shavings. The shavings are specially formulated by Guittard’s chocolatiers so that they melt quickly and consistently in hot milk. I also use an Aerolatte Handheld Milk Frother to create a frothy texture on the surface of the hot chocolate.
Top with whipped cream and a few shavings of the hot chocolate and you have great drink for a cold, wintry day. The finishing touch? A Peppermint North Pole. The thin crisp peppermint stick coated with chocolate makes a great hot chocolate swizzle stick.
No holiday season is complete without a batch of “Barkin’ Good Chocolate Chunk Cookies.” I take a simple chocolate chocolate chip cookie recipe and substitute the chocolate chips for chopped Peppermint Bark. You want to use a chocolate chocolate chip cookie recipe because the dark brown batter “shows” off the peppermint bark chunks elegantly.
TIP: One of my good friends introduced me to a new technique for baking chewier cookies. Bake the cookies for about 4 mins, then take the cookie sheet out of the oven, smack it against the counter about three times, and put them back into oven to finish baking. The result is a flatter, chewier cookie. Yum!
What are the creative ways that you use holiday candy?
About the author: Being an engineer at heart, Margie Tsai has developed a passion for kitchen gadgets. Over the years, she has amassed quite a collection and is always on the lookout for new kitchen Tools, Electrics, Cookware or “kitchenTECH”. Margie hopes that someday she will have a gourmet kitchen large enough to house all of her kitchenTECH.