Sunday, December 23, 2012

In lieu of cookies.....

Do you make gifts for friends, neighbors or staff during the holidays each year? I like to send the Big B in with staff gifts at the holidays and this year wanted to do something handmade again (last year was wine, the year before that was this...) Not really knowing what I wanted to do I of course searched Pinterest for inspiration and came across this little bucket of deliciousnes ....for a mere $17 per canister --on sale.

I knew I could make it for much less. It's a genius mix of popcorn, pretzels and potato chips drizzled in chocolate...and tagged in Pinterest with "Crack in a can" Sounded perfect!  Sweet and salty is right up my alley and I knew it would be very easy to replicate. I found some large containers at the 99cent store and went on my way filling them up with my own version of this Christmas Crack.

Here is what you will need::
1 bag of pretzels...nothing chunky, the skinny ones!
2 boxes of caramel corn of your choice. I used crunch n' munch which they also have at the 99cent store. Good potato chips with the smaller ridges, I chose ruffles.
White chocolate chips and dark or milk chocolate chips.
Parchment paper
Baking sheets
something to package the finished product in.

chipzelpop1

Here is what I did....Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Fill  both sheets with a mixture of caramel corn, pretzels and chips. I used 1 1/2 boxes of caramel corn and scattered that between the two sheets, then filled in with the pretzels and finally added a handful of chips to each sheet. I broke up the chips a bit-- like in 2-3 pieces so they were not too big.

chipzelpop2

I chose to melt my chocolate in the microwave for convenience. I put about 1/4 of the bag of chocolate chips into a glass measuring cup and put it in the microwave for about a minute. The key to melting chocolate chips is to make sure you don't overcook them or they will go hard. When you take them out of the microwave they should still be pretty chunky. Once the majority of them are warm enough to partially melt, you will need to stir them until the rest melt. You can pop them back in the micro for another few seconds depending on how powerful your micro is but just make sure to melt them slowly or your have a nasty chunky mess on your hands. So now that you have your chocolate all melty, drizzle it over the mix on the baking sheets. We used a fork and simply wiggled it back and forth over the goods, reloading as we went.

chipzelpop3

Repeat this with the white chocolate and pop the baking sheet into the freezer for a few minutes.  Once the chocolate has set, pull the sheets out, flip everything over and repeat on the other side. We only did dark chocolate on the underside as the white chocolate didn't melt as well and was just much more of a pain-- and we were making 15 of these bad boys so I wanted to cut the time a bit. Once the underside was sufficiently coated, back into the freezer they go then into containers and out the door so I don't have to eat them! So there you have a delish and surprising mix of holiday goodness.  I love something that's pretty quick and easy and a little different. I kind of wish I had added some edible confetti....it would have tied the gift into our Christmas card. I'll share that with you tomorrow.

I hope you are all having a fabulous Holiday season. We are spending Christmas at home this year for the first time in about 6 years and are not having any visitors either. Christmas with just the four of us has never happened in the history of the four of us. I'm really looking forward to it! What are your plans?


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1 comment:

Jeans and a Teacup said...

Great idea! Love the salty and sweet combination!
~Jessica
Jeans and a Teacup