Monday, December 04, 2006

What do you call a group of???????? and Sweetie Making!!!

I thought a small quiz today might be in order! I will post the answers tomorrow.... remember this is just for fun!!!!

So what do you call a group of Birds? Well so you get the idea the answer is a flock, flight or congregation. Ok so you now know what to do here are some more...


Have fun, whilst I'm busily preparing Christmas presents!!!!

Take a look at Kathryn's blog which I have persuaded her to start. the link is on the left!!

A group of us at the Potting Shed are having a sweetie making week. These could be Christmas presents for grandparents, if you would like to join in then take a look at some of the recipies we maybe using, or if you have some recipies you think we may like to use just drop me a line!!!!


1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup cream
Pinch salt
1 cup peacan halves
Mix first 4 ingredients and stir until sugar dissolved. Cook over medium heat until soft ball (240 degrees F) Put pan in ice water for 3 minutes. Beat until mixture becomes slightly cloudy. Add nuts. Whilst mixture is still shiny drop spoonfuls onto greased surface or waxed paper let set.

Peppermint Creams without egg whites!!!

To make these really special, colour half the batch a pale mint green and dip in dark chocolate.

500g icing sugar
4 tablespoons condensed milk
oil of peppermint
Green food colouring (optional)
Plain chocolate (optional)

Sift the icing sugar into a bowl and stir in the condensed milk until the mixture is smooth, add three drops of oil of peppermint and knead it into the mixture until the flavour is thoroughly mixed through.
Add more oil of peppermint a drop at a time and work it through the mixture until you achieve the strength of flavour you prefer.
Take half the mixture and roll it out on a board dusted with icing sugar to the desired thickness and then cut to size and shape with small pastry cutters or a knife.
Take the remaining half of the mixture and work a drop of green colouring into and then roll out and cut. Leave in a cool place to set.

Dipping in chocolate
Once the creams are set break the chocolate into a bowl. Heat some water in a saucepan over a low heat until it just being to bubble. Stand the bowl over the saucepan over a low heat, stir chocolate with a wooden spoon until it completely melts. Turn off the heat and move the bowl onto a mat.
Take a peppermint cream carefully and dip it into the chocolate so that half of it is coated. Place on a sheet of baking parchment to set.


The ingredients below will make about one pound (450g) of butterscotch.

One pound (500g or 2½ cups) granulated sugar
Quarter pint (150ml or two-thirds of a cup) water
3 ounces (90g or ¾ stick) unsalted (sweet) butter
One teaspoon (5ml) lemon juice
Quarter teaspoon (1.5ml) cream of tartar
Quarter teaspoon (1.5ml) vanilla essence (extract)
Oil for greasing a baking tin (pan)
Well oil an 11" x 7" (28cm x 18cm) shallow baking tin (pan). Put thw ater and lemon juice in a heavy-based saucepan and heat until slightly warm. Stir in the sugar and continue to heat gently, stirring with awooden spoon, until all the sugar has been thoroughly dissolved. Don't allow it to boil.

Stir in the cream of tartar and bring to the boil to 115C/242F on a sugar thermometer (or until a teaspoon ful of the mixture forms a soft ball when it is dropped into a cup of cold water.

Remove from the heat and beat in the butter. Return to the heat and boil to 138C/280F or when a teaspoon of the mixture forms a thin thread when dropped into a cup of cold water. (The thread will bend and break when pressed between the fingers)

Remove from the heat and beat in the vanilla essence (extract). Pour into the oiled tin and leave until it is almost set. Then mark into small rectangles with a knife. When it is competely set, break into pieces and store in an airtight container.

Make your own marzipan fruits

You will need some marzipan already made up. This can be bought from a supermarket.
Leaves: Roll green dough to 1/2-inch thickness on waxed paper. Cut dough into leaves using cookie or canapé cutters. Draw leaf indentations using a wooden pick.

Apples: Shape about 1-1/2 teaspoons red dough into a ball for each apple; gently stretch balls, forming apple shapes. Indent stem ends slightly using a pointed wooden stick. Insert cloves in stem ends. Brush the apples with glaze, if desired.

Strawberries: Shape about 1 teaspoon red dough into a ball for each strawberry. Shape a rounded point at one end; slightly flatten other end. Indent flattened end slightly using a pointed wooden stick. Combine 2 tablespoons granulated sugar and a few drops of red food coloring, stirring until blended thoroughly and desired color is obtained. Brush strawberries with glaze and roll in red sugar; place strawberries on waxed paper. Shape point on stem end of an equal number of leaves; press point of leaf into each strawberry indentation.

Cherries: Shape about 1/4 teaspoon red dough into a ball for each cherry. Push 1/4-inch piece of licorice into each cherry for stem. Brush cherries with glaze, if desired.

Bananas: Shape bananas using about 1 teaspoon yellow dough for each. Push clove into stem end of each banana. Combine 2 tablespoons water, 1 drop green, 4 drops yellow, and 3 drops red food coloring, mixing well. Brush streaks on each banana with mixture.

Oranges: Shape about 1-1/4 teaspoons orange dough into a ball for each orange. Roll each orange over grater to get rough skin. Insert a clove in each orange for stem.

Grapes: Shape about 2 teaspoons purple dough into small balls (about 1/8 tsp each) for each cluster. Brush balls with slightly beaten egg white and shape balls into clusters. For each cluster, brush egg white on tem end of 2 leaves; attach to back of each cluster, pressing gently to make grapes and leaves adhere to each other. Allow to dry. Brush grapes with glaze, if desired

Have fun!!

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