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6 Weeks 'Til Christmas

Have you started your baking yet? Now is the perfect time - you can get it done early enough to avoid a last minute rush in December, and it is close enough to Christmas for most cookies/cakes to be safely stored in the freezer until the Season begins, without getting that frost-bitten taste to them.

Here are a couple of my favorite Christmas recipes:

Skor Bars

I think I originally found this in a Bake Fest brochure. It is a Robin Hood/Chipits recipe that I came across 6-7 years ago, and DH has requested it ever since!

3/4 c. margarine
3/4 c. packed brown sugar
1 1/2 c. flour
1 can sweetened condensed milk (300 ml, I use low fat)
1 pkg Skor Toffee Bits (225g)
1 pkg chocolate chips (300g)

Base: Cream first 3 ingredients until well blended and mixture comes together. Spread & press evenly into 13" X 9" pan or stone. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 min until golden. Cool on wire rack while preparing topping.

Topping: Heat condensed milk and 2 tbsp of margarine in heavy saucepan over med. heat, stirring constantly for 5-10 min or until thickened. Spread over base. Bake 12-15 min longer until golden. Remove from oven, shake chocolate chips evenly over top. Place back in oven for 2 min until chocolate is shiny and soft. Spread chocolate evenly. Sprinkle Skor bits on top, lightly pressing into chocolate (too hard and they will melt, which will still taste good but be harder to cut).

Cool & cut into bars. Stores at room temp. Freezes well. Makes about 4 dozen bars.

By the way - did you know Eagle Brand condensed milk was first invented as "formula" for babies? It was an early attempt at alternatives to BF. That always amazes me - we'd be shocked if someone suggested we use it now!!

Santa's Nuts

Perhaps it shows my immaturity, but I always giggle at the name of this one! I copied this down from a Christmas Special on the Food Network a couple of years ago.... yum! DH tries to convince me they shouldn't just be a Christmas treat. I had to make an extra batch last year, as the first disappeared before New Year's and we were having company!

1 egg white
1/3 c. brown sugar
2/3 c. white sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
3/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tbsp water
1 lb nuts (I use almonds, but I think a mixture would be nice too)

Mix all the dry ingredients (except nuts).

In a separate bowl, whisk the egg white.Add the 1 tbsp water to the egg white.

Coat nuts with the egg/water mixture. Toss with the dry ingredients. Spread evenly on flat pan or stone. Bake at 300 degrees for about 1/2 hour. Cool.

I have no idea how or if this freezes - they have never made it that far in our house. You might want to make them on Dec. 24th to ensure they at least last until Christmas ;-)

Happy Baking!

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