Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Thou shalt love thy neighbor...via holiday sweets & treats! :)

In the mood to spread holiday cheer and joy (...and an abundance of leftover cookie mix not used on Thanksgiving), I set out on a day of baking sweets & treats as holiday gifts for our neighbors on Sunday. I'm pretty familiar with 3 of the 4 neighbors in our apartment building and the 4th only recently moved in, so I thought it would be a nice gesture to give them each some holiday treats.

My sweets of choice were Hershey Kisses Pretzels & Peanut Butter Hershey Kisses Cookies. My friend Tessa introduced the Hershey Kisses Pretzels to me back in college at a Christmas party with my girlfriends. They looked so easy & were so tasty (hello...chocolate + pretzels=glorious!), that I now find myself making them every year around the holidays to give away as treats. So they were my first go-to snack. I made 54 of them (amount allowed via my baking pan), to give 10 to each neighbor and keep the remaining 14 for Markus & I. Pics below of the process...place in oven at 350 degrees for 1-2 minutes (until kisses are soft) and sandwich with 2nd pretzel. Freeze for about an hour before packaging. Like I said...easy. You can't really screw these up..that's the best part! :)


Next, I tackled the Peanut Butter Hershey Kisses Cookies. Now, I'm no regular baker or Ace of Cakes so I used pre-packaged peanut butter cookie mix. I anticipated making it when my parents were visiting for Thanksgiving, but we went with sugar cookies instead. So, I thought it'd be better to make and give away as gifts instead of keeping and tempting myself LOL. My sweet TEETH are bigger than my reasoning skills when presented...so, better to give away. I baked the cookies as indicated on the bag and while still soft, pressed a hershey kiss into each. Adds a little something extra tasty! :) (again...peanut butter + chocolate=DEEELISH!) Here's how they turned out!


Then, for presentation purposes, using saran wrap & curling ribbon, I packaged five cookies & 10 chocolate pretzels for each neighbor's gift bag:


To finish, using cute gift bags from Walgreens (4/$1.00), I folded over the tops of each bag, hole-punched two holes and secured with curling ribbon & a gift tag made from card stock & a snowflake punch:


So this was my holiday project this past weekend. Next time I'd like to attempt cookies or another treat from scratch, but for now, I'm happy with my amateur baking results for this whim of a project. What kind of treats do you like to make around the holidays? I love hearing about others' traditions!

Sincerely, Brit

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