Valentine’s Leftovers

Turns out, when confronted with petite homemade cookies topped with cherry jam and Safeway bakery cupcakes with 1.5 inches of frosting, most second graders will choose the frosting. I can’t say they’d choose the cupcakes since many of them licked the frosting off and disposed of the unwanted cake. Too bad I can’t bring myself to just bring cheap frosting and a bunch of plastic spoons to classroom parties. I now have a large quantity of jam-topped sugar cookies. They go really nicely with tea. Does 4pm work for you? Save

All wrapped up

Remember this project? Want to see what it became? These bags are officially tradition now. I made about a dozen (some of last year’s bags were returned for refills) of the tutorial size of Jeni‘s Drawstring Bags, which is the perfect size for several bundles of homemade candy. This year, the fabric bags contained the required caramels and English toffee (from Grandpa’s recipes), as well as salted caramels (which might become a staple), peanut brittle and chocolate dipped marshmallows. I was hoping to also include opera cremes, but that didn’t work out so well. And I ran out of time …

Introducing Opera Crispies

Have you ever heard of Opera Cremes? They are out of fashion now, according to Grandpa’s vintage books, because they are tiny and have to be hand-dipped in chocolate. But they used to be popular among Victorian opera-goers, for precisely the same reason. Tiny candies are easier to sneak into long opera performances, and you can eat them surreptitiously. No large nut-cruching to distract the performers, no large mouth movements to give you away. Grandpa’s books have a couple of recipes for opera cremes, one of which includes instructions for topping with a layer of melted chocolate and cutting into …

Not done yet!

A rough count, so far: 4 pts heavy cream 2 cups peanuts 7 11 oz bottles of corn syrup approximately 4 cups almonds approximately 4 lbs butter and a lot of sugar (Apologies for the less-than-thrilling photography. Yesterday, Seattle had it’s sixth darkest day of 2012, according to our local weather guru. Sure, it’s a dark time of the year, but our cloud cover is so thick that it basically looks like twilight all day long!) Save

Gratutious Cat Photos

Taking pictures of our cat is hard. Wasabi doesn’t pose. He sleeps in dark corners. He’s prone to rearing up on his hind legs and swiping at things out of place, including camera lenses. Every once in a while, though, he’ll get curious about a camera. Actually, I think he’s not so much curious about the camera as why this weird black thing is hovering in front of my face. Wasabi likes to visit people in the kitchen, since, obviously, we might be talked into feeding him. Also, he’s realized that the catnip lives in the spice cupboard. Any time …

If you need me

I’ll be in the kitchen for most of the month. The first batch has been beta tested and deemed a success. I’m still not sure what the final collections will include beyond the essential caramels and English toffee. I’ve got all of Grandpa’s candy books, which mostly means that nothing is impossible. Which leaves me with improbable amounts of sugar. Hooray! Save