Marci's Top Ten SWEET Christmas Gifts With Recipes! Marci's Top Ten SWEET Christmas Gifts With Recipes!    

Marci’s Top Ten SWEET Christmas Gifts With Recipes!

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Marci

Every year I give a tin of sweet treats to friends and family. This is just something that I enjoy doing with Mini Me and it goes a looong way! This will create memories that Mini Me and I will cherish for years to come and hopefully continue the tradition with her children. I can’t wait until we can have Sissy’s help!

Here are a few recipes for you to prepare and share with your friends, enjoy!

Thin Mint Crackers

Thin Mint Crackers

This year our new favorite cookie is the Thin Mint Crackers. This is super super simple and a great one to do with the kiddos. If you like the Girl Scouts Thin Mint cookies, these are for you!

Ingredients

1/2 bag of Andes Baking Chips

Ritz Crackers with Salt

Over a double boiler melt 1/2 bag of Andes Baking Chips and stir until smooth. Turn heat on low. Next dunk a Ritz cracker in the melted chocolate using a spoon turn over to coat the entire cracker. Place the cracker in the spoon and tilt the spoon on the side of the bowl to allow access chocolate to fall off. Place on wax paper and let dry for about 20 minutes.

* Feel free to use sprinkles to make them festive!

BUCKEYES

I wanted to share with ya’ll my Buckeye recipe. I made over 2,000 of these puppies as favors for our wedding last October. This is a hit with all of our friends and family…{right Grandpa, Wayne and Steve?!?!}

INGREDIENTS

1/2 stick of household paraffin wax
2 sticks butter (softened)
12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 lb. confectioners sugar
2 c. peanut butter, creamy

**Each batch makes about 110 buckeyes.

Line 2 cookie sheets with waxed paper.

Melt butter and add to peanut butter and sugar; stir. Take a teaspoon full and work with hands to shape into balls and then put on baking sheet. Place baking sheet with dough in freezer for 20 to 30 minutes.

Melt paraffin and chocolate chips together on low heat in microwave. I prefer to do it with double boiler by putting water in a pan and placing a Pyrex bowl onto of the pan. If you do it this way, be sure that the water doesn’t actually touch the bowl or it will burn the chocolate.

Take dough from freeze and place a toothpick into the balls and dip 3/4 of the ball into chocolate mixture. Put balls back onto waxed paper to cool.

Once the buckeyes are made, you can place back into freezer to harden. Once the Buckeye is hardened you can stick into a Ziploc bag or container and store up to 3 months.

Creme De Menthe Brownies (From Paula Deen at FoodNetwork.com)

Creme De Menthe Brownies

Ingredients

1 cups (2 sticks) butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 (10-ounce) package Creme de Menthe baking chips (recommended: Andes)
Shaved Creme de Menthe thins (recommended: Andes)

Frosting

* 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
* 1/3 cup cocoa
* 2 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 2 tablespoons milk

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 13 by 9 by 2-inch pan.

Using an electric mixer, combine butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl; beat at medium speed until creamy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla, mixing well.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa, and baking powder. Gradually stir into butter mixture. Fold in mint chips. Spoon into greased pan. Bake for 35 minutes.

While brownies are baking, prepare frosting. Combine butter, cocoa, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and milk in a large mixing bowl; beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until dry ingredients are moistened. Beat at high speed until spreading consistency.

Remove pan from the oven and allow brownies to cool in pan on wire rack. Spread with chocolate frosting. Top with shaved mint thins.

Stained Glass Cookies Recipe

Stained Glass Cookies Recipe

Ingredients

* 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
* 1/2 cup sugar
* 1/4 cup brown sugar
* 1 tablespoon molasses
* 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 1 egg
* 2 cups flour
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
* 30-40 hard candies (such as Life Savers), preferably in several flavors/colors

Directions

Pre-heat oven to 375°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or Silpat.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, cream together butter and sugars until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add molasses and vanilla extract, mixing until incorporated. Add egg and mix until light and smooth, about 1 minute on medium speed.

Sift together flour, salt, and baking powder. Fold dry ingredients into wet mixture. Use electric mixer to blend just until flour is incorporated. Divide dough in half and flatten into two disks. Wrap disks in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least an hour and up to 2 days.

Remove any wrappers on candies and separate them by color into plastic bags. Using a mallet to crush candies.

Place one disk between two large sheets of waxed paper and roll to 1/4-inch thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut dough into desired shapes. Transfer cookies to prepared baking sheets, about 1 inch apart. Using a smaller cookie cutter or a knife, cut shapes into centers of cookies, reserving these center bits to add into extra dough.

Use a spoon to sprinkle the crushed candy into the hollowed-out centers of the cookies, filling to the edges. Try to keep the candy within the centers. Any candy specks that fall on the cookie will color the cookie.

If cookies will be hung as ornaments or decorations, poke a small hole in the top of each cookie before baking.

Bake 9 to 10 minutes. The candy should be melted and bubbling and the cookies just barely beginning to brown. Remove baking sheets from oven and place on wire racks to cool. Allow cookies to cool on pans at least 10 minutes; otherwise, the candy centers may separate from the dough. When cookies are completely cooled, remove and store in an airtight container. String with ribbon if you want to hang as an ornament.

Makes 2 to 4 dozen cookies, depending on how large you make them.

Note: This recipe comes from SimplyRecipes.com.

Chocolate Crackles

Ingredients

1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla
2 eggs
1-1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup confectioners sugar

Directions

In a microwave safe bowl, melt chocolate chips at 50% power for 2 minutes; stir until smooth. Combine with brown sugar, oil and vanilla in medium mixing bowl; mix well. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt. Cover and refrigerate about 3 hours.

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Preheat oven to 350ºF.

Lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray; set aside.

Place confectioners sugar in shallow dish or large plastic food storage bag.

Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll in confectioners’ sugar or add to bag and shake to coat. Place about 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes, or until almost no indentation remains when touched lightly. Cool on wire rack.

Makes 3 dozen cookies.

Note: This recipe comes from Amy Tobin of AmysTable.com. She recommended these to me last year and now one of my new cookies you’ll find in my treat tins every year!

Philadelphia Orea No Bake Cheesecake

 

Ingredients

1 pkg. (1 lb. 2 oz.) OREO Cookies, divided
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
4 pkg. (8 oz. each) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tub (8 oz.) COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, thawed

Directions

COARSELY chop 15 cookies. Finely crush remaining cookies; mix with butter. Press onto bottom of 13×9-inch pan. Refrigerate while preparing filling.

BEAT cream cheese, sugar and vanilla in large bowl with mixer until well blended. Gently stir in COOL WHIP and chopped cookies. Spoon over crust.

REFRIGERATE 4 hours or until firm.

HOLIDAY PEPPERMINT COOKIES

1 c. butter, softened
3/4 c. sugar
1 egg
3 c. all purpose flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 c. crushed candy canes or peppermint candies
5 tsp. warm water
3/4 c. confectioners sugar

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, beat butter and sugar until light and creamy. Add egg and beat until blended. Stir in flour and salt, then the crushed candy. Add red food coloring to dough if desired. Roll 1 tablespoon of dough into ball. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake cookies 8 to 10 minutes until firm. Cool on sheet for 1 minute. Transfer to wire rack to finish cooling. Mix water and confectioner’s sugar together to form icing. Dip top of each cooled cookie in icing (sprinkle with additional crushed candy, if desired) and allow to dry.

Yields approximately 48 cookies.

NOTE: This recipe comes from Cooks.com.

MAGIC COOKIE BARS {These are to die for, no seriously!}

MAGIC COOKIE BARS

Ingredients

Crisco Original No-Stick Cooking Spray
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 (14 oz.) can Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk
2 cups (12 oz. pkg.) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
1 cup chopped nuts

Directions

HEAT oven to 350°F. Spray 13 x 9-inch baking pan with no-stick cooking spray.

COMBINE graham cracker crumbs and butter in small bowl. Press into bottom of prepared pan. Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over crumb mixture. Layer evenly with chocolate chips, coconut and nuts. Press down firmly with fork.

BAKE 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly browned. Loosen from sides of pan while still warm; cool on wire rack. Cut into bars or diamonds.

For perfectly cut cookie bars, line entire pan with foil, extending foil over edge of pan. Coat lightly with no-stick cooking spray. After bars have baked and cooled, lift up with edges of foil to remove from pan. Cut into individual bars.

Note: This recipe is courtesy of EagleBrand.com.

Pretzel Peanut Bark

If you are looking for a easy recipe to do with the kiddos, this is the one! Mini Me loves breaking the pretzels apart. If there is a peanut allergy you can use cranberries, raisins, etc. as a substitute.

Ingredients

18 (1-ounce) squares white chocolate
3 cups skinny pretzel sticks, broken into small pieces but not crushed, then measured
2 cups dry salted peanuts

Directions

Line a rimmed cookie sheet with parchment or waxed paper.

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler over simmering water until smooth, or melt in the microwave in a 2 quart glass dish. Microwave on high (100 percent) for 1 minute, stir, and microwave on high for 1 minute more. If necessary, microwave on high for 10 seconds more, and stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Stir in the pretzel pieces and peanuts. Stir well with a flexible spatula.

Spoon onto the prepared cookie sheet, spreading the mixture out so that ingredients are relatively evenly distributed.

Allow for the chocolate to cool for several hours or refrigerate for about 45 minutes, until firm. Break the bark into irregular pieces, like peanut brittle. Store in cookie tins, or package in Chinese food take-out cartoons lined with waxed paper.

Thumbprint Cookies (it’s not Christmas in our house if we don’t have these!)

Thumbprint Cookies Recipe

Thumbprint Cookies Recipe

Growing up thumb print cookies were a must have on the cookie list. I remember my Mom having a three tiered dish that we brought out and would pile high with cookies…well until my brothers would came around!

Ingredients

1 cup of butter (2 sticks or 8 ounces), room temperature
1/2 cup of sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
2 cups of flour
1 cup of chopped nuts (optional)
3/4 cup of your favorite jam

Directions

Cream the butter and sugar on high speed for about 3 minutes.

Separate the eggs. Add the yolks and vanilla extract to the butter mixture. If using nuts place the egg whites in a shallow dish on the side and whisk them until bubbly and frothy (the egg whites will be used to keep the nuts on the cookies).

Add the flour and salt. Mix until just combined. Place the dough in the fridge for 30 minutes and preheat the oven to 350F.

Roll the dough into balls about 1 inch in diameter. If using nuts, dip the balls into the egg whites then roll them into the nuts until covered. Place the balls on parchment lined cookie sheets.

Press down with your thumb to make a small well in the center of the cookie. Do not press too hard or the cookie will fall apart. Fill with 1/2 teaspoon of jam.

Bake for 12-15 minutes or until slightly firm. Allow to cool for a few minutes on the cookie sheet to firm up before moving them to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Makes 2 dozen cookies.

Note: This recipe comes from SimplyRecipes.com.

 

What’s the recipe that you look forward to making (or eating!) this time of year?

 

Do you have a recipe you’d like to share on your blog? Feel free to link to it below!!


 

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