Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas Baking

I'm supposed to bring a dessert to our family party this weekend. I was tempted to just buy something and make it easy on myself but that seemed a little lame, so I thought I'd try my hand at making some cookies and/or squares. I went grocery shopping after work and bought the ingredients, then came home and started on the first recipe. Two of my little cousins have food allergies, one to nuts and one to gluten, and I found a recipe that I thought would work for both of them except it involves coconut and that means the little guy with the nut allergy won't be able to eat these treats. But have you noticed? It's hard to find a dessert recipe that doesn't involve one or the other of those ingredients, unless you stick to basic fruit.

So I made up this recipe for what they call a chocolate roll, from a "Company's Coming" cookbook. You melt butter and chocolate, add icing sugar, coloured marshmallows, an egg and chopped up maraschino cherries and then you're supposed to form it into a roll. But that's all they say in the directions, they don't actually tell you how to actually form this gooey mess:

into a log shape without getting totally covered with chocolately goo. In the end, I dumped the mixture onto a piece of waxed paper and formed it that way, keeping the paper between my hands and the stuff. I'm sure some people would be right in there mixing with their hands but that isn't me, nor is it overly hygienic, no matter how clean you might think your hands are.  I realized later that if I let the mixture get a little cooler or actually chilled it for a bit in the fridge first, it would probably have been easier to work with when it came time to shape it as required.  I'll know better next time.

Once it's formed into a log shape, you roll it in coconut, chill it and then slice it. It looks real pretty when it's done, so I'm hoping that my rather rude looking little rolls, which are currently resting in the fridge, all wrapped up like this:

will turn out the way they're supposed to.  Here's how they look in the cookbook:

Regardless of how the finished product looks, I'm sure they'll taste good. I can make up another name if they don't actually look like a "roll" when they're sliced up. :)

I was planning to attempt to make lemon squares and cherry meringues (although perhaps last minute Xmas baking is not the ideal time to try new recipes) but suddenly find myself with a kitchen mystery on my hands - where are the beaters for my electric mixer? I have the mixer and the plug, both of which were hard to locate initially, but no sign of the beaters themselves whatsoever.  So instead, I made up some oatmeal chocolate chip cookies.  Not overly Christmasy but always a crowd pleaser!

If you're interested, you can find the recipe for the above dessert here:  Chocolate Roll Recipe.

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