Friday, March 6, 2015

Bluebirds in Candy Nests

 Bluebirds in Candy Nests

Half of my family is nearly buried in the snow.

Tennessee, Virginia, Kentucky..

All we are getting here in our neck of the woods are promises of snow..sad. Our snow is a no-show. So..I'm just going ahead and getting ready for Spring!

Let me tell you, if you like the haystacks made with chow mein noodles and butterscotch chips, you're gonna love these even more!

This combo is definitely making its' way back to Sugartown Sweets!
 Aren't these little bluebirds the sweetest?
This edible craft is super easy to assemble.
 Get started by first making the candy nests.
I used almost half a bag of butterscotch chips to make 5 nests. I'd say the whole bag should make at least 10-11 nests.

Melt the chips at 30 second intervals in the microwave, stirring each time. Mine took one minute total.
Break pretzel sticks in half and gently stir into melted candy.
 Spoon nests onto a parchment or wax paper lined pan. 
Let set while assembling your baby birds.
 As you can see, these don't need to be perfect. The bluebirds will cute them up!
Roll out fondant and press in leaf cutter. Remove wing piece making two for each bird.

*After I made these, I found that Wilton has discontinued these particular cutters. The new ones have crimped edges. If you don't own the old ones but would like to purchase them, I'm including the link here.
 Melt blue candy melts in the microwave at 30 second intervals, stirring each time. Apply a small amount of melted candy to the malted egg. I used the tip of a lollipop stick to apply mine.

Let set a few seconds and place triangle sprinkles. Now using the black candy writer pen, draw on two tiny eyes.
 To attach wings, apply a small amount of melted candy to the side of candy egg. Let set a few seconds and then gently press on wing. That's it! You are done!

He looks to be saying, "hi there!"
"If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow, why oh why can't I."

Wishing You A Sweet Day From
Sugartown Sweets!

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Friday, February 20, 2015

Peanut Brittle. Dip Some In Chocolate. Oh Yeah!



Peanut Brittle.

Never been a huge fan, but that's all changed now! I've really been wanting to try my hand at these candies, and I finally did. My honey pie rated these a 10. He said he's never had any better!! I was giddy. He asked for more. Poor hubby..he would have to wait till these little yummies were done with their "photog" session. He said he wanted his own pan, all to himself. After all these raves, I say he gets it!

As this was my first time making the candy, I looked at lots of recipes. With a few tweaks, I based mine off a couple I liked best. Peter P. Greweling's recipe from this book, and Mom's Best Peanut Brittle.

My MeMaw was a lifetime candy maker. I sure miss her candy and her sweet self! My Mom remembers her Peanut Brittle as being very crunchy with an almost clear brown color. I'm thinking she must've cooked hers to a bit higher temp than mine. I know hers was delicious, I just like mine a little less hard.

Most recipes call for added salt, but as I am using salted peanuts and salted butter (i never use unsalted butter),
 I found it needed no extra.

Let's go make some absolutely crazy addictive candy!
I'm using several organic ingredients in my recipe. Your candy will still be wonderful even if you don't.
Combine sugar, corn syrup..
and water in saucepan.
Bring to a boil stirring constantly until sugar is dissolved. 
Attach candy thermometer.
Stir frequently until temperature reaches 250 degrees.
Almost there!
Time to add the peanuts and butter.
Continue cooking and stirring till thermometer reaches 305 degrees.
Remove from heat and stir in baking soda and vanilla.
Note the beautiful color!
Pour candy onto warmed parchment lined pan.
Using two forks or a lightly oiled spatula, spread candy out toward edges of pan.
Let cool. Break into pieces.
If desired..and you know you do..dip candy pieces into melted chocolate and let set on parchment lined pan.
This stuff is so good you're gonna want to give some away..so you won't eat it all!
Peanut Brittle

2 cups sugar (i used Wholesome Sweeteners organic)
1/2 cup water (i used bottled Fiji)
1 cup light corn syrup (i used Karo)
2 cups roasted peanuts (i used organic roasted and salted)
3 tablespoons salted butter (i used Horizon organic)
1 teaspoon vanilla (i used Sonoma Syrup Co. Vanilla Bean Crush)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda (i used a new container of Arm & Hammer)

1 12 ounce bag Ghirardelli dark wafer melts (optional)

Mise en place. Very important!
All ingredients must be measured and ready to go. Peanut Brittle waits for no candy maker!

Line baking sheet (13in. x 18in.) with parchment paper and place in 200 degree oven while you prepare the candy.

Combine sugar, water and corn syrup in a 4 quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat and bring to a boil stirring constantly until sugar is dissolved. Attach candy thermometer and stir frequently. When thermometer reaches 250 degrees, stir in butter and peanuts. Cook while continuing to stir until temperature reaches 305 degrees. Remove from heat and immediately stir in baking soda and vanilla.
Pour candy onto heated parchment lined pan.
With two forks, pull and spread candy towards outer edges..just enough to thin it out a bit.

Let cool. Break into pieces.
I broke my plain brittle into larger pieces than the ones I planned on dipping in chocolate.

Happy Candy Making From
Sugartown Sweets!

Thanks for stopping by.
Comments and New Members Are Sweet Indeed!

Friday, February 13, 2015

"Wood" You Be My Valentine.. (candy filled) Cookies!

 Happy Valentine's Day!

I may be a tad late with these..but you can always pin them to save and make for next year!
 This adorable wood grain design was achieved by using..what else? A wood grain embossing folder! Super easy. Super cute!

And check out these awesome cookies that Kim over @ The Partiologist created using a wood grain stamp! Love!

I'm making these candy filled cookie stacks for my Valentine..because you know..I heart him!
 The first candy filled cookies I remember seeing were these cute pumpkin cookies over @ Glorious Treats and these super festive Christmas Present cookies from Beth over @ Hungry Happenings.

I decided to only stack my cookies instead of attaching them together with royal icing. You may choose to go the royal icing route.

I also changed up a little on the ones you see below by cutting out a heart in the center of the fondant topper.
 To make my cookies, I started out with some pretty in pink cookie dough.

Click here for the recipe I used. (I omitted the orange extract for these since I'm filling them with flavored M&Ms)
 Roll out and cut your cookies on a parchment lined baking sheet. 
Chill 10 minutes. Bake 7-9 minutes at 375. Let cool.

For the "solid top" cookie stacks, cut two regular hearts and then one with the center cut out using a smaller heart cutter.

For the "open heart top" cookie stack, cut one regular heart and then two with the center cut out. 
Red Velvet M&Ms..we need no words...
 After cookies have cooled, just stack and fill!
Now we get to the fun part!
Roll out your fondant and place in the embossing folder. Now gently but firmly press to imprint. Lift fondant off and cut with the same cutters as used for the cookies.
Place fondant toppers on cookies.

How sweet is this!?

Cookie Recipe
(slight variation to Lila Loa's recipe)
1 cup salted butter softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
4 cups flour
Cream, butter and sugar. Add eggs and flavoring, mixing well. Add baking powder and mix again. Gradually add flour on low speed just till combined. I knead the dough a little to make sure the last little bits are flour are fully incorporated. Chill dough. Roll out on lightly floured surface and cut with cookie cutters dusted with flour. Place cookies on parchment paper lined baking sheet. Chill pan for 10 minutes in frig.
 Bake @ 375 for 7-9 minutes.
Happy Valentine's Day
from
Sugartown Sweets!

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I'll love you for leaving me a comment...
and I'll love you even if you don't!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Airheads Love Bites!

Airheads Bites!

I heart them!

Last year, I made a couple of crafts for Airheads. So, late last year I asked them if they would send me some for new creations. Well, they did. Fourteen pounds worth of candy awesomeness!
Click here and here to see what I made for them last year.

I've had these on my blogetty~blog sketch pad since last fall.
I hope you heart them too!
What a find at Michael's craft store! 
$1.99 for a package of four small treat boxes.
 Just what I needed for my Love Bites.
Love Bites..but it's all good.
 You will need these candies and supplies pictured as well as corn syrup and a paintbrush (to attach hearts to the candies).
 I like the Wilton candy decorating pens as they have a nice long point to write with.
Sweet messages.
To attach hearts to candy, dab a bit of corn syrup to the backs and place on the Airheads bites.
 Sweet Bites!
 This box reads from top to bottom. 
Kiss me! and I kiss you!
 I love you Q T!
 I found a pack of kissy lips in my decorating candy stash. 
This sassy box of candy is for my hunky hubby!
Happy Valentine's Day
From
Sugartown Sweets!

I Heart New Members and Comments!
Thank you for stopping by today.  :o)

Airheads supplied the candy for this post but all opinions stated are my own.