Showing posts with label candy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label candy. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Snickers Muffins

Got leftover Halloween candy?  Make muffins!  This simple muffin batter is happy to accommodate a wide variety of candy and turn it into a delicious snack or breakfast treat.  Candy for breakfast?  Anybody?

Happy Muffin Tuesday, lovely people! It doesn’t have quite the same ring to it, does it? But yesterday was the launch of CookieWeek so Muffin Monday had to be moved along to make room for it. Have you seen the first CookieWeek post?  We have 22 wonderful cookie recipes plus great giveaways from KitchenAid, OXO, King Arthur Flour, Silpat and Zulka Pure Cane Sugar.  Make sure you enter!  And check back all week for more cookies.

But meanwhile, make these muffins with Snickers or whatever leftover Halloween candy you’ve got going.

2 cups or 250g all purpose flour
1/2 cup or 115g sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup or 240ml milk (or 1/2 cup whipping cream and 1/2 cup water)
1/2 cup canola oil
2 large eggs
8 mini Snickers candy bars (about 5 oz or 145g altogether)

Preheat oven to 350°F or 180°C.

Generously grease cups and top of 12-cup muffin tin or line with paper muffin cups.

Cut your mini Snickers into small chunks.  I cut mine lengthwise and then sliced the two long halves into five pieces each.  Separate the chunks into two piles, one about two Snickers big for adding to the top of the batter before baking, the rest for mixing into the batter.

In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together.

In another smaller bowl, whisk together milk, oil and eggs.  (I did indeed substitute the cream and water because I didn’t have any milk and it worked beautifully.)

Add the wet mixture to the flour mixture.

Gently stir just until dry ingredients are moistened.   Now fold in the larger pile of Snickers pieces.

Divide your batter relatively evenly between the 12 muffin cups.

Add a couple of pieces of Snickers to the batter in each cup and bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Remove from oven and let cool for a few minutes.

If any Snickers bits have melted out on to the muffin pan, push them back on the muffin with a spoon while they are still warm.  Remove the muffins from the pan and cool on a wire rack.


Monday, November 4, 2013

Caramel Apple Muffins #MuffinMonday

Apple muffins are wonderful plain, but they are kicked up several notches with the addition of caramel.  Add some cinnamon and you’ve got the perfect fall snack.

When I am counting my blessings, friends in Kuala Lumpur are right near the top of the list, along with family and health.  There are a few things in life that keep me sane, and getting together with folks who share my stories and complete my memory is among them.

I am fortunate to be staying with a dear friend and baking in her KL kitchen this week.  It was like old times as we discussed the muffin recipe and decided on caramel and apples.  She put out the paper muffin cups and I was delighted when I saw her choice because, now, I will always remember where I was and with whom I baked these lovely muffins when I see the photos.  Our friendship goes back to my arrival in KL almost 12 years ago, from the time my younger daughter was in third grade and I volunteered to help with the Girl Scout troop.  That baby girl is now finishing the first semester of her third year at university, to give you some perspective.  That’s a long, long time in a mother’s life!  We all did a lot of laughing and crying and loving and growing up in those many years.  It’s been wonderful to refresh our memories and tell stories on each other and to catch up on all the news.  And bake some muffins.

2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 cup or 240ml milk
1/4 cup or 60ml canola or other light oil
1 Granny Smith or other green tart apple
24 square or 200g caramels, divided

Preheat your oven to 350°F or 180°C and prepare your 12-cup muffin pan by greasing it thoroughly or spraying with non-stick spray or lining it with paper muffin cups.

In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon and stir well.

In another bowl, whisk together the milk, oil and egg.

Cut half of your caramels into smaller pieces making sure to set aside 12 whole caramels.  Put the cut caramels into the flour mixture and mix so that the caramel pieces are coated with flour and won’t stick together.

Peel and chop your apple into small pieces.

Pour your wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and fold them together until just mixed.

Fold in the apple pieces.

Divide half of the batter evenly among the muffin cups.  Put one caramel in each and push down slightly.

Evenly divide the rest of the batter among the muffins cup, making sure to cover the caramel.

Bake in the preheated oven about 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted just next to the middle comes out clean.  (The middle should have a sticky soft melted toffee, remember.)

Cool on a rack for a few minutes and then remove the muffins to cool completely.

These are the perfect snack or breakfast with a cup of coffee or tea.  Or even a cold glass of milk.


I even have a helper dog here.  His name is Max. 

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Honeycomb Crunch Candy

When the theme for this week’s Sunday Supper was announced as Crunchy Goodness, I was in the midst of trying to decide on a flavor for my upcoming BundtaMonth cake where the theme is candy.  I was browsing the candy aisle of one of my local grocery store chains, the British import, Waitrose and nothing jumped out at me.  If you’ve been reading along for a while, or if you know me personally, you know that I don’t have much of a sweet tooth.  There are a couple of exceptions to this rule and they include all things caramel, especially if there is salt involved.  And suddenly, the solution came to me!  I could combine these two challenges by making crunchy honeycomb candy and then using it in a honey Bundt cake.  Win-win, right?  And to celebrate my personal triumph of ideas, I headed over to Tavola and bought myself a new Bundt pan.  Hey, any excuse for a new Bundt pan!  (Come back on 4 October when the cake will be unveiled!)

I researched my cookbooks using Eat Your Books and trawled through deep internet waters, looking for the perfect honeycomb recipe.   I finally settled on this one from Joy the Baker
but since it didn’t have honey, I substituted that for the corn syrup and changed the apple cider vinegar to white balsamic.  I decided to double the recipe – unnecessarily, as it turned out – to make sure we’d have enough to munch on and still have plenty for the cake.  One batch would have been sufficient.  But, working on the theory that one can never have too much honeycomb crunch candy, I have no regrets.  Store anything that is not consumed immediately in the freezer or refrigerator, well-sealed, with the layers of candy separated by parchment paper or waxed paper.  Unless you live somewhere cold and dry, it gets sticky very quickly at room temperature.

1 tablespoon baking soda or bicarbonate of soda
2 2/3 cups or 600g sugar
1 cup or 240ml runny honey
3/4 cup or 180ml water
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 teaspoons white balsamic vinegar
Butter for preparing the pan

Necessary equipment – candy thermometer and large, deep pot with heavy bottom, aluminum foil

Sift your baking soda into a small bowl and set aside close to the stove.

Prepare a large baking pan by lining it with aluminum foil and buttering the foil liberally.  Set aside near the baking soda bowl.  If you can’t put a hot pot on your counter top, add a trivet or hot pad nearby (for the candy pot) and another underneath the baking pan.

Mix your sugar, honey, water, cream of tartar and balsamic vinegar in your deep, thick-bottomed pot.  Set it on the stove over a medium flame and whisk until all the sugar is dissolved.

Put the candy thermometer in and make sure the tip is in the liquid.  Gently swirl the pot every so often as it heats.  At one point, mine bubbled up a bit so I stirred with the whisk to settle it down.

You are looking for the thermometer to hit 300°F or 149°C.   When it reaches the correct temperature, remove the pot from the stove and set it on the counter or on the trivet or hot pad you have ready.

Remove the thermometer and pour in the baking soda and whisk quickly.  This will expand like crazy and suddenly the need for a deep pot becomes violently apparent.

Carefully pour the molten bubbles into your buttered, foil-lined baking pan and leave it to cool and harden.

After mine had cooled somewhat, I transferred it to the deep freezer to speed up the process but that’s just because I am impatient.

When it’s completely cooled and hardened, lift the foil out of the pan and turn the slab of candy over onto a cutting board.  Peel back the foil and gently break the honeycomb crunch with a small hammer you have borrowed from your daughter’s toolbox.  Just kidding.  Any hammer will do.

As previously mentioned, this turns soft and sticky when exposed to air so line a plastic container with parchment or waxed paper and store the candy in the refrigerator or freezer.  Many recipes also suggested that dipping the candy in melted chocolate would keep the moisture out as well.   If you try that, let me know how it goes.

Save the little crunchy shards too!  They will be great to sprinkle on a honey cake! 


Do you love crunchy things?  Then this week’s Sunday Supper round up, hosted by Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen, will be your favorite week.   I know it’s one of mine.

Crispy Appetizers
Crunchy Entrees and Sides
Munch on Snacks
Crisp Desserts

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Toffee with Chocolate and Almond Slivers

Toasted almonds on the bottom, salted toffee in the middle and more almonds and semi-sweet chocolate on top. Break this apart like peanut brittle with a little hammer. Buttery, sweet and salty, and delicious. 

So, my house-hunting trip to Cairo was indeed canceled.  We had been blessed by an invitation to share Thanksgiving with a family there on Friday and I was planning to make this to bring, to share, since I wouldn’t have a proper kitchen in the serviced apartment.  I decided to make it anyway, because, so rich are my blessings, I have been graced with another invitation to share Thanksgiving here in Kuala Lumpur.  Since I have an actual kitchen and oven, I will also make an apple pie.  And green beans, just like my grandmothers used to make, to bring as well.

May you all be blessed richly with friends and family who love you this Thanksgiving.  I am firmly convinced there is no greater blessing than friends and family who love you!  I am more grateful than I can express.  Surely, I do not have my family with me, but they are safe and I hope that they also know how much they are loved by me and how much I wish we could be together. 

2 rounded cups or 300g of slivered almonds
2 cups or 450g unsalted butter
3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 cups or 450g sugar
1/8 cup or 30ml light corn syrup
1/3 cup or 80ml water
1 1/2 rounded cups or 290g semi-sweet chocolate chips

Toast the almond slivers in a dry non-stick frying pan over a medium heat.  Stir or toss them frequently to make sure they brown evenly. 

It's hard to see how toasted these are but they were darker than the photo makes them appear. 
Line a baking pan with sides  (minimum 15 1/2in x10 1/2in or 40cm x 27cm) with foil.  Butter the foil liberally.

Sprinkle half of the toasted almonds on the foil.

Ah, see! They look more toasted in the natural light.
In a heavy saucepan, add butter, salt, sugar, corn syrup, and water. Cook over medium-high heat.

Cook the mixture until it reaches 290-300 degrees using a candy thermometer, which is the soft crack stage. Be really careful at this step, at 280 it goes really fast, and can burn in mere seconds. 

Pour the mixture immediately over the almonds. Set a timer for five minutes and let it cool until it is firm but still hot.

Sprinkle the chocolate chips over the toffee.  Set your timer for two minutes and, when it rings, spread the chocolate all over the toffee.

Sprinkle with remaining toasted almond slivers.  Chill in the refrigerator until it hardens completely.

Peel the toffee off of the foil and turn it over.  Gently break it into pieces with a small hammer. 

Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container, with waxed or parchment paper between the layers.  Or serve immediately!

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone who is celebrating this weekend!

Adapted from this recipe, but originally from Pinterest and The Idea Room.  I tried to find the original post on Pinterest but I don’t really understand how it works, I guess.