Chocolate

Bourbon Balls made with Markers Mark bourbon a Kentucky wonder

I had hoped to post this over the holidays but things just got to busy and some how I just did find time to get this rewritten and ready for all of you.

Photo of the bourbon Balls sold through the Makers Mark web site

Photo of the bourbon Balls sold through the Makers Mark website

While visiting the Makers Mark distillery  we were all given one of the best candies that I have ever eaten. They looked like this and we each where give one at the end of our tour. I longed to send these to some of my friends as gifts and maybe keep some for myself but I just could not afford to. As wonderful as these are I thought with a little effort and time I could find a recipe that was close to the fantastic candy we had on our trips to Kentucky and make them at a price that I could afford to send them to friends and family all across the country and introduce more people to the world of cooking with bourbon.

I found a recipe at the following website  www.herkentucky.com and started with it and tweaked it a little to make the recipe even easier to make.

The day before you want to make the balls  you should soak  one cup of chopped pecans  in 1/2 cup bourbon over night covered in the refrigerator. This is what you will need to make about 40 walnut sized candies.

  • 1/2 cup of good quality bourbon, I like Makers Mark
  • 1 cups chopped pecans
  • 1 cup whole pecans
  • 1 pounds of powered sugar
  • 1 stick of real cream butter, softened
  • 1 bag 16 oz. of dark chocolate chips …. I used Hershey’s Special Dark
  • 1 half bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips.
walnut size bourbon balls before covering

walnut size bourbon balls before covering

  1. Place 1 cup chopped pecans into food processor and chop fine.
  2. Place fine chopped nuts into a bowl with 1/2 cup bourbon and let soak over night.
  3. Cream butter in large bowl, adding bourbon soaked pecans. Combine pecan, butter mixture with powdered sugar to form a stiff batter.You may need to add up to 1/2 cup water to thin mixture. Stiff enough to form a nice ball. Refrigerate to let stiffen the mixture about 2 hours or the freezer for 30 minutes.
  4. Roll dough into walnut size balls.
  5. Place on wax paper on cookie sheet and place in freezer for about 30 minutes.
  6. While balls are chilling place about 1/2 bag of dark chips and 1/4 bag semi sweet chips into a microwave safe bowl. The smaller the bowl the easier it is to dip the and coat the balls. Heat chocolate for about 2 minutes stirring at about 1 minutes to insure that the chocolate melts evenly.
  7. Using two teaspoons drop one ball at a time into chocolate and cover, use other spoon help let the extra chocolate drip back into the bowl. place on clean wax paper to cool. Add more chocolate as needed and warm when the chocolate gets to thick to smoothly cover balls.

    covering the bourbon balls with the chocolate coating

    covering the bourbon balls with the chocolate coating

  8. Top with half of a pecan and let cool. We chose to use dark chocolate because the ones you get at the distillery are a pure dark chocolate but not a bitter chocolate.

    cooling bourbon balls with  pecan toping

    cooling bourbon balls with pecan topping

We let the candy cool over night before eating and by then the chocolate had hardened and the flavors had time to meld together. They were excellent and we got about 40 balls from this recipe at about 8 dollars for everything but the bourbon. This was a savings of about 10 dollars a dozen.  So I was able to share them with lots of family and friends. Enjoy!

Maker Mark distillery sign with kids

Maker Mark distillery sign with kids

Categories: candy, Chocolate, Kentucky, Maker's Mark | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Kids Getting to Much Easter Candy? How to use it up.

Easter bunny candy

Easter bunny candy photo credit to www.health.com

      One of my Pet Peeves in this life is people giving my children candy all the time. I even dislike getting candy from stores,banks and even Grandma. I know this makes me the “MEAN” mom… The one who says no to a lot of free junk food, but I feel it is my job to watch out for my family and their teeth. I come from a family with genetically soft teeth. We don’t get cancer or strokes, we just suffer from cavities on huge scale. Even with proper dental care my siblings and children just have more overall oral health problems then most. 

    When Easter rolls around I cringe at the thought of all those chocolate bunnies, jelly beans, and Peeps. I have over the years tossed out thousands of dollars of candy given to my two sons as gifts. This year was unusually bad when it came to chocolate.  My younger son received around 3 pounds of chocolate in the form of bunnies, crosses and M&Ms. This does not include the Ring Pops,Gummy Bears, the malted eggs or Peeps found in his baskets. People, theirs a limit to how much candy a four-year old should eat.

    So after receiving  all that chocolate, I just started freezing it. I knew that at some point it could be used later. This Mothers Day seemed like a good time use up some of my hidden stash. Christopher and I made chocolate chunk cookies for the holiday and with the help of 6 adults and 2 kids we all enjoyed the chocolate.

                                                           I have named these cookies  “Easter Chunk Cookies”.

cooling Easter Chunk Cookies

cooling Easter Chunk Cookies

  

My recipe comes from the “Better Homes and Gardens” New Cook Book of 1981 and 1992 publication, page# 128. Gather all the ingredients and begin to warm the chocolate if frozen.

everything except chocolet

everything except chocolate

.

 I have to admit that I make cookies all in one bowl just like my mother, so my photos of the process may appear backward to what is the “Correct” way to add ingredients to the mix. Mom,I make them just the way that you taught me.

creamed sugar butter and adding eggs

creamed sugar butter and adding eggs

 

    Frist into the bowl is butter and shortening at room temp, then the white and brown sugar. Cream together until light and fluffy. I then add eggs and vanilla and salt cream them into butter mixture. I then add 1 cup of flour and mix, then baking soda  and then the rest of flour and mix well . Then I add the chocolate, nuts and candy.

chopping up chocolet

chopping up chocolate

chopped up Easter candy and mini M&Ms

As you can see above the chocolate Crosses are thin and even with three they only produced about a cup of chunks. So, I added more left over candy, in this case mini M&Ms from Christmas.  The two together made about a 1  1/2 cups of chocolate and then added a cup of chopped nuts to the batter. 

everything combined and ready to drop on cookie sheet

everything combined and ready to drop on cookie sheet

I dropped a tablespoon of mixture on a cookie sheet and baked them at 375, for about 10 minutes about 2 inches apart. The dough is soft and chewy in the middle but crispy and lightly brown on the bottom. We ended up with about 2 1/2 dozen cookies and I spent nothing for any of the chocolate and that saved me about 4 dollars on one batch.

I still have about 1 and 1/2 pounds of left over chocolate in the freezer and a huge bag of jellybeans. So more ideas to  come.

Here is the ingredients  for my “Easter Chunk Cookies”.

2 1/2 cups  all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup Crisco shortening

1  cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 1/2 cups chocolate chunks and or colored mini M&Ms

1 cup chopped nuts.

I hope that the next Easter candy recipe that I post is for Jelly Beans and what to do with 2 pounds of them. Maybe by July, I will have used most of them up and shared them a  company picnic or some other large group gathering.

Categories: candy, Chocolate, Easter, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

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