Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Whimsical Wednesday

That sounds nicer than Wasted Wednesday, doesn't it?  And really today wasn't wasted at all.  Just not remotely productive.  What I'd hoped we'd do today was decorate gingerbread early in the day and go caroling with the church in the late afternoon.  But it drizzled all day and Ed has a horrible stomach bug and the kids didn't wake up until late, so we didn't do Any of those things.

But I read quite a bit of The Making of Victorian Values: Decency and Dissent in Britain: 1789-1837, which is very interesting, and I watched a lecture by Tracy Lee Simmons on classical education, which was also very good (and just what I needed to inspire me to put more effort into my Latin next term).  And I made Bourbon Balls because I'd given all the first batch away and I needed some more. I added extra bourbon (for medicinal purposes, to kill any germs Ed might have tried to share), and they are really good, but afterwards I took a short nap.
 I'm sure everyone has a good recipe for Bourbon Balls (mine is from The Joy of Cooking), but maybe not everyone has the recipe for Saltine Candy? I started making these last December (Amy, at The Foil Hat, started me on them -- blame her!).  In case you don't, this Is a recipe you Need, so here it is...

(the picture isn't actually my Saltine Candy.  But it looks just the same and mine is all gone.)

Saltine Toffee Candy
approximately one sleeve of Saltine crackers (enough to cover the bottom of your jelly roll pan)
1 cup butter (not margarine)
1 cup brown sugar

1 bag (about 2 cups) chocolate chips
some yummy, decorative topping thing

And this is how you make them...
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees

Cover the bottom of the jelly roll pan with Saltines (I have to break some in half to get to the edges -- you do want to get pretty close to the edges).  (You don't have to worry about greasing the pan or lining with foil.  With that cup of butter in there you won't have problems with these sticking to the pan!)

In a heavy saucepan, melt together 1 cup butter (that's 2 sticks) and 1 cup (packed down) brown sugar. Once they are melted together, bring the mixture to a boil and boil for 3 minutes.

Pour the sugar mixture evenly over the Saltines (I spread it around to make it more even, but you probably don't have to) and put it in the hot oven for 5 minutes.

Take it out of the oven and sprinkle evenly with chocolate chips.  After about 5 minutes they will be nice and soft and you can spread them evenly over the toffee.

Now sprinkle with your crushed up peppermints, nuts, M&M's, or whatever tasty topping you found in the pantry.  And wait for the toffee to cool completely before you break or cut it up.  Gosh it's good!

Katie and Travis were lazy slobs with me today, but Katie did paint her salt dough ornaments from Monday!

And Travis made a Lord of the Rings "sitcom" video.  Did you know that a trailer for The Hobbit has been released? Very exciting, although I am completely baffled by what Galadriel or Narsil are doing in the movie, and kind of appalled at the suggestion of a romantic moment between Galdriel and Gandalf (is Celeborn okay with this?  Actually, if he is, I don't want to know.).  And not even a glimpse of Smaug?  But, still, we are happy there will be another Peter Jackson/Middle Earth movie. Here is the link.
But Jackson's movie won't be out until next December.  Which is a long time from now. Travis and I have been talking lately about laugh tracks in sitcoms, and he thought it would be fun to add a laugh track to The Lord of the Rings.  I thought it came out well.


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