Thanksgiving Treats, Candies and Sweets, Part 1
Anyone who reads Becks & Posh regularly will have gleaned by now, that I have been organising a series of bake sales at work to raise money for the AEF/BCEF. This Monday, our theme was "Candies, Sweets and Thanksgiving Treats". Knowing how easy it is to have a disaster when attempting to create home made goodies of this kind, I enlisted a bunch of my mates to come round and help me. In return for them spending their Sunday afternoons hard at work in the kitchen, I promised them Brunch (more on that another day), and mimosas. My blackmail attempt worked and no fewer than 5 good people showed up to help me.
Let's start with one of our success stories. I love After Eights and Junior Mints so I decided to have a go at making Peppermint Creams as I sometimes did when I was a child.
4 cups icing sugar
2 large egg whites
2 teaspoons peppermint extract
Sift the icing sugar into a large bowl.
Stir in the egg whites and peppermint.
Mix to form a stiff dough.
Break off little half inch pieces, roll into balls and press down with your thumb to make mini patties.
(Note: you could roll out the dough and use mini-cookie cutters to shape your candies. However, I found this method unwieldy. The dough started to dry and crack and the edges weren't perfect.)
Leave at room temperature on wax paper for at least 12 hours to dry out, turning each one over at the half way stage.
If you like, once dry, dip in a little dark melted chocolate and leave to set.
These candies look pretty in a clear cellophane bag. I took photographs of the creams prior to packaging which I printed out then used as labels. Remember to write on the label that these sweets contain raw egg, as a warning to people, particularly pregnant women, who may not want to consume them.
As predicted, however, not everything was a success. But at least we had a larf trying.
Take, for example, the Burnt Sugar Lollipops from the Fall 2004 issue of Eating Well magazine. I handed this task to Ian who was fastidious in his preparation of the ingredients and confident he would turn out beautiful little golden lollies as shown in the magazine's photograph.
Confidence still high, pre-crystallization, Ian in action.
Our version versus theirs. Erhmmm....?
At least one of our batch, kind of, looked good enough to eat.
(Too bad it didn't taste so good.)
Next time maybe we shouldn't substitute cream of tartar with vinegar, even if an internet search suggests it might work. And maybe Eating Well could issue a temperature guide for boiling of the sugar. I imagine that could be another factor in the key to success.
Stay posted for more tales of our attempts to make Thanksgiving treats, coming soon. Thanksgiving Treats, Candies and Sweets, Part 1