It'S All Over Now - From The Witch's Kitchen Blog at - 215395

From The Witch's Kitchen

It's All Over Now 
Jan. 5, 2011 11:59 am 
Updated: Jan. 16, 2011 6:42 pm
Christmas that is.

I've spent the last ten days or so

recuperating from over a month of baking

nearly every day. I made a total of 22 gift

trays and tins for family and friends and

kept a few tins full to have around our house

during the holidays, the rest I sent to our

local youth center.  I've been sending them

baking for Christmas for three years now,

they give me some cash to help cover

my ingredients and I send them about 14-16

different types of cookies and other treats to

serve at their annual Christmas feast and to

send home with the kids afterward. What

did you bake to give as gifts, or to charities?

The most addictive things I made were

of my standbys Peanut Butter Meltaways.  

While tasting everything and licking bowls

and spoons when I could beat the children to

it  I redeveloped a sugar addiction and the

habit is going to be hard to kick.  Time for

some healthy cooking again. 

 Happy New Year.

Jan. 5, 2011 12:09 pm
wowsers, pass the salad bar this way please. That is alot of work and glad to see you are back here to feed your other addiction. It's a lobour or love that I too enjoy doing every year. The kit kat bars are soooo good. Every year I think to myself, I am going to make less, and every year I find a couple new recipes to make. Then I tell the family, I need to delete one of the old recipes to make room for the new goodie-not happening, they rebel. So I make butter tarts, soft ginger cookies (1/2 batch baked into ginger crisps) shortbread, jam jams, Gitano's pinwheel cookies, chocolate crinkle cookies, several varieties of chocolates, turtles, cherry chocolates, peanut butter cups, 2 fudges (Sassy's and Shorecook's), mints, almond/cream cheese bon bons I made up with another member on the board from last year, peanut brittle, cracker brocha, caramel popcorn, bits and bytes, clodhoppers, cream cheese cherry balls, rum balls, and a square I compare to Christmas cake for those who hate Christmas cake-it's called 5 in 1. Have a great 2011:)
Jan. 5, 2011 5:13 pm
lol RNG, that's my kind of salad bar!! Your spread sounds great, mind sharing your 5 in 1? It sounds like something I'd be into :D
Jan. 6, 2011 4:07 am
I love that you give some of your home baked goods to a youth charity! I've done food gifts for years but this yr I hosted a cookie exchange party, then gave cookies from the exchange away in my gift pkgs. everyone got a larger variety and I only had to bake 4 doz cookies.
Jan. 6, 2011 6:17 am
Thanks Gahsmomx3, the cookie exchange may be a good idea in years to come but I really think I'd miss all of the baking that I do. When my kids get older and I decide to go back to school or work I may just have to re-think my crazed baking though. Thank's for commenting.
Jan. 6, 2011 6:28 am
You go girl! You needed that rest! Every year I try to mix it up a little. I made 22 gift bags of mixed goodies to send to work with the Hubs and myself. Cake Balls, Buckeyes, Sugar cookies (Hand decorated), Snickerdoodles, Biscotti, Caramels, Hard Candy, Italian Wedding Cookies, and Pepper Cookies.. Thank goodness it's over..Happy New Year!
Jan. 6, 2011 6:35 am
Wow everything looks great sarah! I cant believe you did all this yourself, you must have been exhausted. We do the same thing but I get together with my mom, sister and sister-in-law. We made nut-goodie bars, peanut butter blossoms, sugar cookies, cherry drops, caramel bars, carmelitas, mexican cookies, lemon cookies, cranberry-orange cookies, cinnamon spice cookies, rasp & almond thumbprints. At least your done right? Happy New Year!!
Jan. 6, 2011 7:09 am
Thanks Anissa. I usually do sugar cookies too but this year I opted not to because they are so time consuming, I missed it though so they are on the list for next year. I agree, huge sigh of relief that it's over and it was successful.
Jan. 6, 2011 7:13 am
SB-I envy you your baking family, I've only got one family member who bakes a lot and she doesn't do it for gifting (my little brother eats it about as fast as she can make it. Not only am I done, I seem to have worked my desire to bake right out of my system, at least for now. It's doing wonders for my waistline :). Thank-you for stopping by.
Jan. 6, 2011 7:21 am
Oh my you were busy! And it all looks so good! Can I get on the distribution list for next year? ;) I didn't bake nearly so much, just a small selection to bring in to work and to share with a few relatives. I did make candied pecans to give to my uncles as their Christmas gifts though.
Jan. 6, 2011 7:28 am
lol Alex, I've never shipped any of it, it all get's hand delivered. Yumm to the candied pecans, I made pralines for the first time ever this year, tried three times and the second batch was the only one that really turned out as pralines, the other's were too hard and were more like candied nuts, still delicious but not the pralines I was going for. Thanks for stopping by.
Jan. 6, 2011 11:13 am
Great job Sarah-May! I have to try your peanut butter meltaways!
Jan. 6, 2011 11:19 am
Wow, amazing! Well done and welcome back!
Jan. 6, 2011 11:21 am
Thanks Skoo and Lobster! It's great to be back and as much as I love all of the craziness surrounding the holidays, I'm so glad that they're over.
Jan. 6, 2011 11:30 am
Yum! It all looks amazing! It is so sweet of you to make stuff for the youth center too. You deserve a wonderful rest.
Jan. 6, 2011 11:37 am
Thank-you iceemama :).
Jan. 6, 2011 3:39 pm
Wow, you were busy! I didn't make a whole bunch of stuff and I just made some things for my neighbors and family. I made some jam filled mini thumbprint cookies, gingerbread men, soft sugar cookies, peanut butter cookies and your Peanut Butter Meltaways(they are so good by the way.) I love the Kitty Kat Bars recipe too. I plan on making that this weekend. Glad you had a great Christmas Sarah-May!
Jan. 6, 2011 5:32 pm
Thank's Nuggets, I'm a peanut butter junkie myself, the top of those kitty kat bars tastes alot like the peanut butter butter meltaways and the crunchieness of them adds so much to them.
Jan. 6, 2011 8:33 pm
wowzers the heck did you find the time to make all these masterpieces and watch after 4 kids? You really do have boundless energy. I have 4 kids too but I think I might have lost my mind trying to keep up with all of that, and the house, meals, homework, etc. I give you credit woman. Nice job. I went back to work full time outside the house last June and this Christmas, I didn't make nearly what I usually have done. Made me a little sad actually.
Jan. 7, 2011 7:53 am
lol my energy is far from boundless Avon, hence the 10 day recovery period and I still don't want to bake. Thank's lady, I'm not sure when I'll start working again, my youngest bunch only just turned three though so it'll be a while yet. I sympathize with missing all of the baking though, as crazy as it is I love doing it.
Jan. 8, 2011 9:09 am
Wow, your baked goods are gorgeous,and you have such a wonderful variety. The folks who enjoyed them must have felt very special! This year I decided to go a different route with my food gifts for friends. I made King Arthur's English Muffin Toasting Bread and homemade pumpkin butter. I did include one bit of tradition, though - my homemade caramels. I'll have to try those oatmeal date bars - they sound delicious.
Jan. 8, 2011 10:36 am
I'm glad that you put that you are not working outside of the home (although we all know that stay at home parents are the most hard working of all!) as I definately have "baking envy" for you and the time you took to do everything. I didn't start baking (or decorating, or even shopping) until after Dec.17 when school got out (I'm a teacher) but I did manage to make a few batches of our favourites. My Grandma's shortbread and her lemon cheese, Brown-eyed Susans, and jam filled shortbread thumbprints. I also do a lot of pies over the holidays and a birthday cake for my Christmas gift of 2001 (my son!)
Jan. 8, 2011 11:07 am
maryb, Thankds so much! I'm drooling thinking of your pumpkin butter, I love it so much! Just a note on the date bars I didn't put sugar in the dates and I added orange zest and some spices to make them a little more Christmassy :).
Jan. 8, 2011 11:08 am
Thanks freezermama, do you have the recipe for lemon cheese posted? Do you mind sharing it? It's fine if it's a cherished family one that you want to keep but I'm interested, I'm going to snoop through your recipe box now ;).
Jan. 8, 2011 12:10 pm
I made Brandied Candied Walnuts (so easy in the oven!) from a recipe I found here at AR, and began substituting Capt. Morgan Tattoo Rum that I used in my Famous Rum Balls. I made big batches of Chex mix and a batch banana bread (that somehow baked up edible despite the cup-too-much of flour in it) to round out the gift trays. Wow, I got hooked on that *hic* rum, it has such a unique flavor I've added to my pantry of flavors instead of relegating the bottle to the booze closet (it made the most remarkable Rum Glazed Carrots!) Oh, and I learned to make marzipan! It was a very yummy sugar-overload holiday, and I am SO FREAKIN' GLAD it's all over!! But it was all good...Happy New Year to You!
Jan. 8, 2011 12:18 pm
Thanks tnkrbll, I snooped your profile and saved the walnuts, they sound great!
Jan. 8, 2011 1:55 pm
I am absolutely gobsmacked at all you and Redneck Gramma did!
Jan. 8, 2011 2:21 pm
Gobsmacked...that makes two, lol
Jan. 8, 2011 5:01 pm
*passes Maureen and Carrie Gobstoppers* Thanks for dropping by ladies ;)
Jan. 8, 2011 7:27 pm
wow, delicious, my mouth is watering just looking at this posting, thanks for sharing and inspiring. my christmas consisted of sugar pie, mille feuille, brocoli salad, fruit cake, white and dark, cupcakes, (chocolate peanut butter, angel food cake, germain chocolate) tortieres or meat pies, cranberry punch, and just now, truffles and chocolate candy and a sushi/spring roll party. Ah yes, we had gingerbread houses home made that we decorated, and a fondue party. Oh yes, also chocolate zucchini bread, apple spice cake and banana bread all baked in mason jars to give as gifts. A pretty good Christmas on our part I would say, busy, but good. we are a family of 7 and I couldn't go to all these parties with all of us empty handed. Your treats sure look good, I'll have to check your recipes and maybe save a few to try!
Jan. 9, 2011 6:49 am
I will post the lemon cheese recipe in my files for you. I've never posted a personal recipe before but I'm assuming it's not that difficult.
Jan. 9, 2011 7:03 am
You're welcome Bountiful-life. I've yet to make a gingerbread house I always say maybe next year. I'm going to have to try baking in mason jars, I've seen pies done in the small ones before :). Thanks for stopping by.
Jan. 9, 2011 7:04 am
Awesome freezermama, I'll go snooping in your recipe box a little later on for it :).
Jan. 9, 2011 7:36 am
Wow - my first "personal" submission. I said it makes 24 tarts just because I had to put something in that field in order to submit it. (a single batch wouldn't make that many) A double recipe (which is the only one I've done) will fill up a quart canning jar just over 2/3 full. I make 12 3 inch tarts from it and then use the rest for scones etc.
Jan. 9, 2011 8:32 am
I started out December by making 300 cinnamon rolls for a benefit for a friend fighting lymphoma. My bread machines and I were very busy. I shaped my rolls put them in pans and froze them over a one week period and then delivered them frozen to volunteer bakers who baked them the morning of the event and delivered them. We raised over $3,000 for a very deserving family.Then I started my usual cookie baking adventure, about 15 kinds of cookies, mostly old favorites but I always throw in a few new varieties as well. Once the cookies were all done I had my annual candy making day with my granddaughters. The oldest are 21 and 16 and I've done this for about 7 years now. The 16 year old says it's one of her top ten days of the year-up there with her birthday and Christmas. Grandpa says there is more giggling than candy making going on so a good time is had by all. We made 4 kinds of fudge, cherry mash, peanut clusters, cookie dough truffles and reindeer food. Then a few days before Christmas the girls come over again and we make up plates of goodies to be delivered. This year we delivered 20 plates of goodies, several tins and a huge container went to the hospital with my daughter for her co workers. This is my favorite part of Christmas. I look forward to it every year and hopefully I'm making some wonderful memories for my granddaughters as well.
Jan. 9, 2011 8:51 am
I make choc chip cookies, apricot and prune kiffles, M & M cookies, peanut butter cup cookies,butter gun cookies, which take people back to their childhood and double choc treasures, vanilla pizelles, mini cheesecakes. I make beautiful platters and give them out. My bosses wife took them to a party and passed them off as her own, lol dont you love people like that. Cept I found out about it, she dosent get any more. lol Last year I made a huge huge tray and took it to a local soup kitchen, when a job change cut in half whom I normally gave too. I couldnt imagine not baking. so Im sure the homeless enjoyed them. for me it wouldnt be Christmas without baking. Ill never stop doing it. Thankfully I only work part time and did alot in the afternoon and on weekends. Nice to see there are others out there like me.
Jan. 9, 2011 3:13 pm
The 3rd photo down on the right has me drooling. YUM! Everything looked too good!
Jan. 9, 2011 3:36 pm
@ freezermama Got it thanks, sounds awesome, the lemonier the better imo.
Jan. 9, 2011 3:38 pm
Miata- Wow! That's a huge amount of cinnamon buns. Good for you, and I love that you involve your grandchildren in your baking traditions, they'll appreciate it down the road when they have children of their own.
Jan. 9, 2011 3:39 pm
Silver Ghost-You're definatley not alone, many of us have the crazed baking bug and wouldn't want to shake it even if we could, thanks for commenting.
Jan. 9, 2011 3:41 pm
Thanks Cat Hill, how've you been? I haven't seen you around in ages! The picture you like is of "salted peanut chews" a recipe from a pamphlet of my mother in laws and they are drool worthy! Nice to "see" you here.
Jan. 10, 2011 1:38 pm
Wow, all this and raising 4 kids - I'm exhausted just thinking about it. I cook at a shelter/food bank and I make mini zucchini bread, banana bread and cranberry bread as my gift to our guests. I start baking right after Thanksgiving and I distribute starting Christmas eve and lasting through to the week before New Years. I figure this way they get a treat and a little nutrition at the same time. My baking is utilitarian, yours is beautiful. Of course I still make a few cookie trays for the family, chocolate chip, spritz, brown eyed Susans, chocolate and lemon crinkles and almond cranberry biscotti.
Jan. 10, 2011 2:18 pm
Good for you BigShotsMom! I bet the people who receive your baking wouldn't call it utilitarian :), thanks for commenting and pass that biscotti this way please.
Jan. 11, 2011 8:34 am
Wow, I am so impressed. I only baked for one day, and did 7 different redipes. Maybe I had better gear up for next year. Thanks for the list of cookies and bars you made.
Jan. 11, 2011 6:51 pm
You're welcome Bjorose, if you're looking for a specific pictures recipe feel free to ask, if it's one I have a link for I'd be happy to post it for you :). Thanks for dropping in.
Jan. 11, 2011 7:40 pm
I do 8-10 varieties of cookies, bars, candies and this year I added homemade vanilla. I also made the candied pecans and almonds this year...they were a really big hit. I made bourbon balls for the first time too. I did a cranberry, white chocolate chip that was tasty. But with all that you certainly have me beat...they all look delicious and I'm sure much appreciated but the kids.
Jan. 12, 2011 6:09 am
Thanks for dropping by Dianna :D.
Jan. 12, 2011 11:05 am
I used to do the 8-10 varieties but found that I was stressing myself out when they didn't all meet my standards, so now I just do 3 or 4...gingerbread cookies, Scottish shortbread, a fruitcake cookie or lemon bar, and perhaps a chocolate-mocha-cinnamon cookie. Your variety looks and sounds delightful. What other cookie do you suggest? =) You've inspired me to ask the local youth center if they would allow me to bring treats this year.
Jan. 12, 2011 11:48 am
Hi there Skyeyes, these... really yummy, I used all cranberries instead of the raisins and added orange zest, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves to mine, I think I needed a little more oatmeal than the recipe calls for too. Also these... a bit of messing around but were worth it, I added mint extract to my melted chocolate and skipped the butter in the topping too. Here's one I made... cheated and pressed chocolate chips into the centers while they were still warm instead of making the frosting so they'd travel well. Make sure you inquire if your local center is a nut free environment or not, and if they allow nuts make sure to clearly label anything that contains them :). Good luck and thanks for commenting.
Jan. 14, 2011 4:39 pm
I had 3 different baking days at my house. Different people came over for each one, and we spent to day making Christmas cookies and visiting. I loved every single day. Then I sent most of the cookies home for their holiday treats.
Jan. 16, 2011 6:42 pm
Sounds great Cindypray!
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About Me
I'm a self/family taught cook. I love to try new recipes and experiment with exotic ingredients and spices. I have 4 young children and I've been married for 6 years.
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I love curries, yeast breads, (any kind of baking actually) and anything different.
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