Tag Archives: candy canes

Candy Cane Snowballs

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I totally meant to share this cookie with you all last December, time does FLY doesn’t it??!!

* I usually prefer to chill my dough for a day or so, then bake later. This dough gets kinda hard, so if you DO chill it 1st (I still did) just note that it will be a bit harder to scoop.

Candy Cane Snowballs 
1 1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 1/4 c. butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. peppermint extract
1 egg
3 c. flour
1 TB. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. crushed candy cane
1/2 c. mini chocolate chips

Beat together the powdered sugar and butter till light and fluffy. Add the extracts and egg and beat till well combined.

Combine the flour, baking powder and salt and slowly add this into the butter mix.  Beat about 1 minute.

Add in the crushed candy canes and mini chocolate chips by hand. Scoop into balls, I used my cookie scoop. Bake @ 350° for 11-13 minutes.  Take off pan as soon as possible, the melting candy canes get sticky and hard rather quickly on the pan. Cool on wire rack.

Yields about 40 cookies.

Recipe adapted from a recipe clipped from the Times Newspaper.

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Peppermint Bark

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Check it out! Favorite Family Foods is on Pinterest!!!

Aldi Specials, starting Dec. 18.

(Just a few things out of the ad.)
  • 10 lb. bag of Russet Potatoes is $1.29.
  • 3 lb. bag of Onions is 79¢.
  • 16 oz. bag of Brussels Sprouts is $1.79.
  • 4 lb. bag of Oranges is $1.99.
  • 3 lb. bag of Clementines is $2.99.
  • IF you are not in the baking mood, Aldi has you covered. I saw a number of pies/cakes/sweets throughout the ad.
  • We usually enjoy quite a few snacky type items throughout the Christmas week. Aldi has a nice selection of cheeses, cheese balls, snack mixes and appetizer items. Be sure to check it out!
  • A 16 oz. Shrimp Ring is $5.99 (a smaller ring is $4.99), don’t forget the Cocktail sauce! ($1.29)
  • Sparkling Cider and Juices are  fun treats to have, for kids AND adults alike. Grab a 25.4 oz. bottle for $2.29-$2.49.
  • A 33.9 oz. container of Classic Roast Coffee is $5.49.
  • Need creamer for your coffee? How about Peppermint Mocha? A 16 oz. container is $1.49.
  • Top with a dollop of Whipped Topping, an 8 oz. container is 89¢.
  • OR…..a side of Ice Cream???  A 48 oz. container is $2.69.
  • Do you like Hot Chocolate better than coffee? (yes….) Grab some milk and a box of Nestle Nesquick for $3.99 (a 21.8 oz. container).
  • Butter ($1.99), Cream Cheese (99¢) and Crescent Rolls (99¢) are ALL STILL at a great price!!! Grab them well you STILL can!
  • Turkey is $1.19 per lb. Ham ranges from 99¢ – $1.49 per lb.  DOES YOUR FAMILY ENJOY HAM OR TURKEY FOR CHRISTMAS DINNER??! or both??  (Ham….hands down winner in this house!)

The following is a recipe made from ALL Aldi (Winter Seasonal) items. (AT one point Aldi was carrying mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, my Aldi sold out WAY to quickly. Regular size chocolate chips work fine for this recipe.)

Peppermint Bark

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For some reason I have an over-abundance of candy canes. (Someone just keeps buying them each week, because she this person thinks “Do I have candy canes at home? Oh, let’s grab a box….just. in. case.”)

So. That means. I needed to use some up. Chocolate + Mint = Deliciousness.

Peppermint Bark is easy.  You really CANNOT mess it up…….unless ~

  1. You burn the chocolate. It happens. It is OK. Just learn from your mistakes. Chocolate IS sensitive. VERY sensitive. I have had happily melting chocolate turn ugly in seconds.  I HIGHLY recommend a double-boiler. Microwaves mess things up at times (though IF you take your time and stir every 30 seconds ~ 1 min. you should be OK.)
  2. Your chocolate seizes up. OK. So, I do not always think (not my better quality…..). I wanted to make Peppermint Bark with flecks of mini-chocolate chips. I THOUGHT (at this point my “thinker” was working) IF I add the chocolate chips now, when the almond bark is hot, it will melt the little chocolate chips. I wanted WHITE chocolate with brown flecks and peppermint pieces.   SO, I cooled to luke warm. Checking, till just the right level of luke-warmness was reached. THEN I headed to my freezer…….yep freezer (FYI: this was the point the “thinker” stopped thinking.) I added just the right amount of frozen chocolate chips……”marvelous” was going through my head ~ remember to roll the “r”…… I had my pan all ready to pour that lovely melty Peppermint Bark onto and somewhere between the point of stirring and dumping my. lovely. concoction. become. nearly. rock. hard. I tried my best to spread it, but really, spreading a rock is impossible. Never one to give up too quickly, I popped it in my oven @ 160° and set the timer for 10 minutes and walked away. Phew. It got all shining and wonderfully smooth again. I took my offset spatula and spread it. So very glad that I had not ruined it. Though now, I ended up with swirled Peppermint Bark. I am OK with that. So don’t add frozen chocolate chips to melted Almond  Bark. (Just a gentle reminder, I KNOW we all know better……)

Peppermint Bark 
16 oz. Vanilla Almond Bark
6-8 crushed Candy Canes
3/4 – 1 c. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Melt the almond bark in a double boiler, keeping on eye on it and stirring often till it is shiny and smooth and melted. Take off heat. Let cool a bit, then add the crushed candy canes. Set aside to cool till so very lightly warm (aka ~ luke-warm). Add your chocolate chips (being SURE they are at room temp). Mix, don’t over mix cause the chocolate chips will start to melt. Spread onto a wax paper lined jelly roll pan and spread to the thickness you want. Chill to set. Break into pieces and enjoy!!

Beer Brats & Grasshopper Dessert

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Yep, it is Wednesday! Time for Aldi sales! Sales are from Sept. 19-Sept. 25.

    (I had about 5 recipes to share this week….that is TOO many, so I had to choose  only 2……THAT was hard….SUCH good veggie sales this week!!)
*Broccoli is $0.99 for a 1 lb. package. I will be getting some to make this Broccoli Salad!!
* A head of cabbage is $0.69, I have 2 salads that I enjoy to make for my family, why pick??? I might just make Cabbage Crunchy Apple Slaw and Chinese Salad, will you???
*Red Potatoes are really good and for $0.79 for a 5-lb. bag ~ they are FANTASTIC!!! Now to choose between…..BLT Red Potatoes or Ranch Potatoes??
* Cauliflower is $0.99 each. I will grab one and get you a recipe ANOTHER day!! 🙂
* One of our favorite snacks is the Savoritz Wheat crackers. Plain OR dipped in BLT Dip or Pepper Jelly ~ have you tried either of these yet???
* I know that it is not “grilling” season per say, BUT Aldi has brats on sale, so that means I get to share a  “brat” recipe with you!!! (I have not tried these particular brats from Aldi….sorry, cannot give a true “critique” of those ~ had anyone tried them?? Are they good??? Prices range from $2.69 – $2.99 for 8oz.-16 oz. pkgs.
* Chocolate Creme Sandwich Cookies (aka Oreos….) are on special for $1.89. They have chocolate or mint, lets enjoy a taste of the Holidays with Grasshopper Dessert!!! (Or file this for your holiday parties….not me, I will be making it ASAP!!! (again….)

As always, I would love to hear if you tried anything, liked or disliked anything ~ maybe I shared a recipe that you already know and love!! I would love to hear about it all!! Lets have a gab session….oh.. Hey, don’t forget IF you have a recipe your family LOVES and want to share it with me, so I can make it and share it with EVERYONE, share it here @  favoritefamilyfoods@hotmail.com  !!!

Now for the recipes……

I really wanted to make this for my husband, he had been requesting brats and I wanted to make them “special” ~ it WAS easy, and delish…..and I don’t like beer, but the flavor was nice. I had eaten “beer brats” before, but have never made them. I will FOR SURE do it again, it was nice to have them simmered and ready to go when we were ready to throw them on the grill. Just keep in mind that the red pepper flakes pack a wallop of heat ~ so go for less if you are not into that sorta thing!!! Enjoy this truely summer treat.

Beer Brats
2 cans of beer
1 onion, chopped
5 brats (good quality ones IF you can get your hands on them)
3/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
Bring the beer and onion to a boil, I used my large deepish skillet for this. Add the rest of the ingredients and lower the heat to medium and cook about 10-12 minutes. Take the brats out and grill, just keep on eye on them and turn them when they need to be and talk to my husband more about the about of time and doneness and when to take them off I am not even going to pretend to tell you how long they took to cook and he is not here right now to remind me….breath…..moving on. Simmer the onions till liquid is cooked down a bit and onions are wonderfully tender. Serve the brats on buns with the onions and mustard. ENJOY!

Recipe adapted from a recipe shared with me from a friend via Facebook.

Ready for DESSERT!????!!!

Anyone enjoy mint chocolate chip ice cream??? Mint Meltaways?? Grasshopper cookies? Mint Oreos?? York Peppermint patties??? Maybe you are in? Maybe you are not. I just know that mint/chocolate is wonderful combination that I have loved for as long as I can remember. I was hot, I was hungry, I wanted something cold for dessert (I know…..making this “Christmas lookin’ ” dessert in the summer, I must be CRAZY!….. I was going to wait till  the holidays ~ to share this with you ~ but it is not MY fault that Aldi has mint Oreos NOW……NOR will you find me complaining, just all the more I can make this dessert!!  We fought over the leftovers the 1st time I made it, so since then ~ yep, I double it to a 9″ x 13″ pan. 🙂 Nice and versatile.

* I used this Hot Fudge Sauce. (Cooled NOT actually hot.) Though I am sure that a hot fudge sauce from the store will be fine, you do NOT want to use chocolate syrup though, it will most definitely change the whole consistency of this thing I am sure!

* Mint oil can be found in the cake baking section of stores like Wal-Mart or Joanne’s. It has a VERY strong flavor without using much, so proceed with caution and just start with a drop, taste, add a drop, taste, go from there. IF you go over board your nose will begin to feel like you have a peppermint stuck in there…sorry. I would imagine you could also use mint extract, though I have not tried it that way. Start with 1/2 tsp. or so, that would be my guess.

Grasshopper Dessert 
15 Mint Oreos, crushed
1 1/2 TB. melted butter
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 c. powdered sugar
1/2 c. HOT FUDGE sauce (from the store or maybe this one?)
8 oz. Cool Whip, thawed and divided to 2 – 4 oz. sections
mint oil
green food coloring, opt.
1-2 mint candy canes, crushed (or crushed Starlight mints)
3 TB. (or so) of mini chocolate chips
Combine the crushed Oreos and the butter, press this mixture into the bottom of a 9″ square pan. Set aside. Beat the cream cheese and powdered sugar, add the hot fudge (not hot though :)) and beat just till combined. Fold in 4 oz. of the Cool Whip. Pour into crust. Set aside. Fold a drop of mint oil in the remaining 4 oz. of Cool Whip, stir ~ give  it a taste and see if you need to add another drop you two. You want a nice mint flavor, nothing TOO overpowering. Add a drop or two of green food coloring. Stir, spread over chocolate layer. Top with crushed candy canes and mini chocolate chips. Freeze. ENJOY!!!