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January 14, 2015
Welcome Sweet Springtime with Festive Candy Recipes
By Janet Tharpe
The Easter Bunny had nothing on my Grandma when it came to homemade Easter candy. Somehow amidst all the other work that goes into presenting a big holiday feast, she'd always have time to create the cutest, tastiest, most memorable candy for us kids. Because of her, I always make sure to have a few special sweet treats as part of our Easter spread each year. And boy, have you all served up some real winners lately!
One of our latest find comes from sweet gal Joan Rehfeldt, whose sense of humor is rivaled only by her cooking creativity. Her Deviled Egg Easter Candies - molded white chocolate eggs filled with a mixture of colored chocolate and crispy rice cereal - look so much like real deviled eggs that even the wiliest of rabbits will be fooled! "I am always looking for cute holiday goody ideas," says Joan. "All my friends anxiously await to see what I will come up with next." Serve these tricky treats on a bed of green bunny grass or wrap them up in colorful cellophane for an adorable party favor. "I have made [candy] favors for baby and wedding showers, cookie exchange parties, and I have even made some for Holiday Bazaars. I love creative cooking especially baking and candy making."
Home cook Bea Liles has found a similarly sweet passion of her own. "Chocolate, caramel and nuts...that's what I'm talking about," laughs Bea describing her ooey, gooey chocolate Millionaires. With layers of caramel and nuts, Bea's candies are reminiscent of traditional turtles, but with a unique melt-in-your-mouth consistency. "I like these better than turtles because the caramel doesn't stick to your teeth," says Bea. "I think it's because the caramel is mixed with the sweetened condensed milk. It's so creamy inside the chocolate and it's hard to quit eating them." Be warned, though... This recipe comes with a warning: They're addictive! It's true ladies, despite what you may think, one millionaire just isn't enough.
In addition to chocolate, it's also fun to add a few bold bursts of color to your Easter basket. Jordan Falco gave us a great idea: homemade flavored marshmallows! Her Pink Peppermint variety was a huge hit at Christmas time... and is making a demand return appearance at our house this spring. "These marshmallows are so easy, and making them is so rewarding," says Jordan who often packages up her colorful sweets to give as gifts. "You can make them any color or flavor your like! Change out the extract for whatever flavor you desire. For instance, I replaced the peppermint extract with lemon extract to make very sweet, lemony marshmallows - a delicious summer treat!" Get the kids involved and let your creativity flow... You'll have homemade "peeps" in no time!
Jessica Grigowsky of Alabama credits her aunt for getting her hooked on their family's favorite holiday treat, M&M Balls. These unbelievably festive meringue puffs are sprinkled with bright M&M's and are kid-friendly to the max. "My aunt has been making these for all the kids in the family for as far back as I can remember," says Jessica. "They're super quick, easy and CHEAP to make!" The Kitchen Crew and I also love that they're a lighter alternative to traditional Easter treats. They're like little rainbow-colored clouds... the perfect addition to your spring soiree.
Well, it's time to wrap it up... the candy that is! These yummy sweet delights are a great way to make this time of year extra memorable for the kids in your life. Spend time together in the kitchen, then gather around and cherish the fruits of your labor.