Monday, December 7, 2009

How UGLY Can Be Good!

I probably shouldn't show a picture of a cute pinkeep right after the word "Ugly" so let it be clear right now... The ugly/good subject will come AFTER the pinkeep subject. :)

*I know that I said in my last post that I would be listing things on Ebay, which should have been done yesterday, but I was just too busy and didn't get a chance to work on doing that so Ebay listings will be done today.

I have a few Ebay pinkeep collector customers and since I haven't been making any pinkeeps lately, I'm hoping this one, which will be listed today on Ebay, will help to keep my customers from giving up on me. I hope to make a few more this week too.

This one is made all of wool, of course and I've used my special vintage buttons to make the snowman. I stuffed the mitten with wool scraps so it has some nice weight to it now. I'll include the white glass headed straight pins with it because they look like snow. If anyone wishes to purchase this without going through Ebay, just send me an email.

So now ... How can ugly be good? Well, I'll give you the recipe and show you how to make my sister's (Casserole Carol's) Ugly Cookies.

I hope she doesn't mind me giving out her recipe. I've made these for a big number of years now, so I really consider it my recipe even though I call it "Carol's Really Good Ugly Cookies"

And let me just say, this is an example of how my sister got her name "Casserole Carol". She always comes up with really unusual but really good recipes. I know that's why I had THIS DREAM about her.

Anyway, these are super easy to make and they are always a HUGE hit whenever they are taken anywhere. It's very funny to watch the reaction of people in a big group when they first taste these because it's always the same. A plate of these are usually ignored and not eaten at first just because they don't look appetizing. Just wait though... all it takes is ONE person to taste them. Once one person tastes them, that person will VERY QUICKLY spread the word about how good they are and then before you know it, the plate is empty. I'm telling you ... it's hilarious because that happens EVERY SINGLE TIME.

So here we go. To start ..... See, I told you they are really unusual ... start with a sleeve of crackers. I've used Keepler Townhouse Crackers and then filled in the tray with some Ritz crackers. The recipe actually calls for Graham crackers, but I didn't have any. Regular saltine crackers work too. This is a 10" x 15" tray. The crackers can be broken, it just doesn't matter, just put as many crackers as will fit onto the tray.

Preheat your oven to 350.

In a sauce pan, combine 3/4 cups of butter, 3/4 cup of brown sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla.

Stir until it comes to a boil and then stirring constantly, continue the boil for 4 minutes.

Remove the saucepan from the heat and immediately pour the mixture evenly over the crackers. Don't worry about covering all the crackers though because the baking will take care of that.

Bake this for about 10 minutes or until it's bubbly and lightly brown .. watch it close though because you don't want it to burn.

While it's baking, get 1 cup of chocolate chips and 1/2 - 1 cup of chopped nuts ready. The nuts can be walnuts or pecans or cashews or even peanuts ... whatever you have around is good.

And, while you wait for the baking ... clean up .. your pan will have cooled into a cement-like coating of toffee that might seem impossible to ever remove .....

No fear ... soak it in some hot water and it's magically gone!

this is how it looks right out of the oven. Bubbly and gooey.

Throw on your 1 cup of chocolate chips ......

They will melt once they hit the hot toffee so spread the chocolate evenly.

Quickly throw on the nuts and then let this all cool.
Once it cools completely, it will have hardened into a toffee, crispy sheet of good ugliness.
Break it apart and store it in an airtight container until the time that you're able to surprise a group of people with it's ugly goodness.

Oh my gosh ... I put them on a plate to get a picture of the finished product to show and then thought .. I might as well set them on the "Oh Snowy Night" table runner so that I can push the pattern sale of it and HOLY COW .. look how cute that plate looks on the table runner! It looks like the snowmen are sniffing the cookies. haha ... I found a new way to show the candle mat now. It looks cuter with a plate of cookies in the center than it does with a candle.
See, y'all will have to either buy the finished table runner from me or buy the pattern to make it yourself so that you can show off all your good Christmas cookies! :)
Details about the pattern sale will come tomorrow.
Here's the official recipe if you wish to do a copy/paste of it to print.

Carol's Really Good Ugly Cookies
(Toffee Crisps)

1 package of graham crackers (or club crackers, Ritz or saltine crackers)
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup butter
1 teas. vanilla
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 - 1 cup of nuts (almonds, walnuts, peanuts or cashews)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Arrange Graham crackers side by side in a single layer on a cookie sheet (I use a 10 x 15). It might take more than one sleeve of crackers depending on the size of pan. Break them up if you want or leave the crackers whole, it doesn't matter.
In a 2 quart saucepan, combine butter, brown sugar and vanilla. Cook over medium heart, stirring occasionally until mixture comes to a full boil across the surface. Continue boiling for 4 minutes, stirring constantly.
Remove saucepan from heat and immediately pour mixture evenly over the crackers.
Bake 10-15 minutes or until bubbly or lightly browned.
Remove pan from oven and sprinkle with choc chips. As chocolate melts you can spread it evenly over the crackers. Quickly add the nuts while choc is still warm.
Cool completely, break up and store in airtight container.

Happy day everyone!


Country Wings in Phoenix said...

Oh My Gosh,
I am going to have to try this recipe. Sweetie it sounds and looks so scrumptous. I thank you for sharing today. I love it when my bloggers friends share these wonderful ideas.

I love your little mitten. It is so precious. I love the embroidery work that you did on it. So cute.
You do beautiful handwork.

Stop by soon I love it when you visit. Country hugs...Sherry

Darlene said...

I'm expecting a group of women tomorrow morning - going to make these cookies - they sounds YUMMY!!!! I can't wait to see their reaction. LOL

Love the way the plate of cookies looks on the snowmen mat - it does look like they're smelling the cookies. LOL

carolyn@primitive~devotion said...

That pin keep is so cute! And YUM, that recipe sounds so good! We will have to try that one. Thanks for posting it!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for giving credit when credit is due. I can't do much, but I can make really UGLY cookies!

Guess I'm going to have to make a batch tonight. By the way, I don't have any luck making this on wet, humid days. Candy portion doesn't set right. Is is it just me, Cathy?

Caserole Carol

ohiofarmgirl said...

Well they look good but I am afraid to try it because I might eat them all and then...that would be Thanks for sharing. Dianntha

SueWis said...

I love toffee and this looks like an easy way to get my toffee fix. Thanks for sharing!

Carrie P. said...

The mitten pin keep is so sweet.
I have made those toffee bars with the graham crackers. YUM!

Anonymous said...

Think I'm going to have to try making these. And yes...they look wonderful with those cute snowmen checking them out!!!

Mary on Lake Pulaski said...

Adorable little mitten pin keep Cathy! Thanks for the yummy recipe too.

Val said...

Yummy does the job, nevermind the ugliness... thanks for sharing the recipe!

StitchinByTheLake said...

I've made these before and they don't last any time at my house - we love them! blessings, marlene

Rugs and Pugs said...

I've made these but my recipe was called "tastes better than they look"! Thanks for sharing. I haven't made them in years but this year I will.
Love your blog :)

Cassie said...

OMG!! Made these the other night and they are to die for!! My husband said "thank you for making these". Too funny, he thought I made them for him ONLY!! There is only one left. I must make more! Thanks for sharing.