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Just a simple gal living on the outskirts of Portland making ends meet. I have lived in Portland for over 20 years and I am happy to call it home. On this blog you will find everything from cooking to my crazy life. I hope you enjoy.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Holiday Treats

So I am currently busier that a one armed paper hanger...or some such crazy talk. This is my last week of work until Dec 30th, so I am busy at work, busy with work from home and then someone slipped this holiday called Christmas right into the middle of it. Honestly where in the heck did the time go this month?
I have been working on some snack food type goodies to give co-workers as gifts this Christmas and I am really happy that so far they have gone off without a hitch. I chose goodies that keep fairly well so I can make them ahead and store in the pantry or in the fridge or freezer.
I started with a spiced Pecan recipe from Saveur magazine on line. These nuts turned out smokey with just enough sweet and salt to guarantee that one nut won't be enough, and you will find your self a handful deep into the dish before your realize you were supposed to give these as gifts...maybe that is just me. I did double the recipe overall and made the addition of equal amounts of white sure to the amount of brown sugar and in doing that remember you won't quite use all of the seasoning on the nuts. I still have some left over. I also might possibly reduce the amount of Paprika next time by 1/4 of what is called for. They turned out great tons of flavor. Remember to keep an eye on your oven because nuts will go from nicely toasted to burnt in no time.
The next thing I put together that evening was probably the simplest recipe for fudge that I have ever run across. This fudge is super dense and delicious. I love watching Giada De Laurentis's cooking shows on Food Network and when I remember to turn on the t.v. and catch an episode I feel very fortunate. She made a wonderful, easy and delicious (I have discovered) cinnamon fudge. One of the notes from the recipe states/claims that you can freeze it. This is exactly the kind of recipe I am looking for. I followed the recipe almost to the letter. The recipe calls for 1lb. or 2 cups of chocolate I compromised and weighed out 14oz.. Sprinkled some sea salt on top (just the right touch), cut it into little squares and wrapped it in parchment paper, put it in a container and froze it...all but the couple of dozen pieces I left out for the family.
I still have one more thing to make for the goody bags for work, but that is going to have to wait until later on in the week. Keeping my fingers crossed on that one. Cookie baking will take place on the 23rd or 24th. So keep checking back.

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