Sunday, April 5, 2015

Easter Candy 2015

Every time we make Easter candy, we learn something new.  You'd think after all these years we'd have it down pat!  I keep notes from year to year - one of these times I'll perfect the process.  Ha!

There were fewer confectioners in the kitchen this year, so I had more hands-on than I have in a while.  Trying to keep tabs on the various recipes and mixing ingredients at the same time was a challenge!  Our prime decorator and one of our dippers were unable to attend; a couple of us tried out new tasks. 

This year I set up ingredients next to each recipe, and numbered the recipes in the order they needed to be tackled:  Oreo truffles, buttercreams, chocolate chip cookie dough truffles, peanut butter eggs, paves, ginger nut clusters, and straw nests.  That worked out well - I confirmed I had all the ingredients and people weren't forced to dig through my cabinets to find stuff. 

Turns out that Skippy's Natural peanut butter separated in the peanut butter eggs after they were dipped.  Sadness.  They taste great, but leave little oily spots where they sit.  I discovered Ghirardelli melting wafers in December for the dipped molasses cookies.  I wasn't happy at using fake white chocolate on our lovely confections.  However, the fact we managed to dip the entire set of Oreo truffles without seizing the coating?  Sold.  We will definitely be doing that again next year.  We also managed to go through the whole 2 lbs of dark chocolate for dipping without seizing any of it.  Excellent!  Come to think of it, the milk chocolate stayed perfectly smooth as well.

The straw nests came out beautifully, as usual.  It was a good (dry) day for making toffee and the paves came together without any issues.  (I cut them a bit too big... but oddly enough I was the only one to complain about that.)  The ginger nut clusters seemed to magically appear out of nowhere, so that prep must have gone without a hitch.  We used the leftover dark chocolate to dip biscotti (and I think I ended up with all of them!).

Even with fewer gals (there were five of us - one had to leave before the group photo), we managed to wrap up by late afternoon.  Most of us sat down with a cup of tea to admire our work before packing it all away and heading home.  Whew!  To the victors go the spoils!

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