Test Kitchen: Rock Recipes Christmas (for Thanksgiving!)

October 6, 2016

Team ALU was at it again – someone let us into a kitchen with a new cookbook! This time we’re getting ourselves into the holiday spirit with the latest in the Rock Recipes series: Rock Recipes Christmas by Barry C. Parsons (Breakwater Books). While the holiday for which we’re getting in the spirit for is actually Thanksgiving, the food cravings are pretty much the same!

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Team ALU was at it again – someone let us into a kitchen with a new cookbook! This time we’re getting ourselves into the holiday spirit with the latest in the Rock Recipes series: Rock Recipes Christmas by Barry C. Parsons (Breakwater Books). While the holiday for which we’re getting in the spirit for is actually Thanksgiving, the food cravings are pretty much the same!

Rock Recipes Christmas includes a ton of great recipes for main and side dishes for your first course, but we actually decided to skip right to dessert. Our mothers and dentists may not like it, but we decided to live life on the wild side! In picking the recipes we wanted to try, many stories were shared—memories from childhood to horror stories of trying to recreate Grandma’s favourite recipe—and pantries were raided. May we present to you total sugar overload!

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Haystacks

 

First up, Haystacks. This is a type of macaroon with few ingredients, so fairly quick and easy to put together. The hardest part of this recipe was shaping the cookies with an egg cup. It gave them a nice shape but they were a little large. This is an important fact to keep in mind as this was the first of five recipes we tried; things got a little sillier as the afternoon progressed and more sugar was consumed.

 

Snowballs

 

 

Next up was a classic: Snowballs! These chocolately orbs were melt in your mouth delicious. They’re really easy to put together and you can control how big you shape them. Ours were quite daintily made and the recipe makes ~ 4 dozen so it felt like we’d been hit by a blizzard, but luckily they freeze well!

 

StrawberryChiffon

 

Strawberry Chiffon Squares made it on to our list because each of us had a family story about jello salad and these are the cookie equivalent. And we were quickly reminded after our first bites, why that is. Because jello salad, and its cookie equivalent, is so tasty! We made these in muffin tins so we ended up with little rounds that were the perfect size, almost like a little piece of cake.

 

Nanaimo

 

Nanaimo Bars: we had to include this Canadian favourite! Perfect for the holidays (though you can send some over to ALU HQ at any time of year and we wouldn’t turn them away) the version in Rock Recipes is chocolate mint. We added a dash of green food colouring to up our holiday spirit points and decided these were the perfect after-dinner dessert.

 

Brittle

 

Finally, an extra special treat to take our sugar high to the next level: Chocolate Toffee Pecan Brittle. While Rock Recipes includes this in the gift giving section, we didn’t really want to share this with anyone. It was the first time we had made brittle so the candy thermometer really came in handy but otherwise it was a pretty simple recipe to follow, with few ingredients and great results.

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 Now that you are extremely hungry, we’ll wish you a Happy Thanksgiving! And hope you are inspired to try your hand at a few new treats this holiday season.

 

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