Allergen Free Candy

Have you ever heard of a chocolate candy bar, that was not only gluten and dairy free, but sugar free too? Well, I’m here to tell you that there is one and it is called Endangered Species Chocolate.

TYPES OF BARS

All of these candy bars are sweetened with beet sugar and are made from dark cocoa. There are a variety and to name a few they include coffee, raspberry, mint, and supreme dark chocolate.

EXTRA CHOCOLATE TREATS

You can, of course, eat it piece by piece, but there are other ways to enjoy it too.

Photo courtesy of Endangered Species Chocolate Company

You can melt this candy in your microwave or even in a bowl over your stove. When it is all melted, you can reshape it and make holiday decorations. You can have designs like bunnies or eggs for Easter. Of course, depending on the holiday you can make a heart, a shamrock, or even a Christmas tree. Then, on an ordinary day, you shape smiley faces, stars, or balloons. This is actually a great activity to do with children.

Now, once you have the shape you desire place them into the refrigerator for a few hours, until they re-harden.

You also have the option of rolling the melted chocolate in a variety of fruits, such as bananas, apples, strawberries, or pineapples. Then, place the covered fruit in the re-fridge to harden and simply enjoy this sweet treat.

Lastly, you can leave the chocolate melted and have a fondue night!

CHOCOLATE BONUSES

Plus, with every purchase of candy you make, ten percent of the proceeds goes to support Endangered Species, habitat and humanity. Hence, the name of the candy company.

Fudge-it

Fudge it!

Fudge. That very word has struck fear in my heart. Usually spoken late on a cold night, when the kids had been off from school because of snow, one of them would invariably ask for a ‘pot of fudge’.

Fudge at our house was rather involved. 3 cups of sugar, half a cup of cocoa, a tablespoon of white corn syrup and a cup of milk, cooked to soft ball stage, then beaten until I thought my arm would fall off [for some reason known only to my maternal grandmother, this step was only to be completed by hand, never with a mixer]. Then the whole mess was spread out on buttered wax paper, scored and you prayed to the Fudge Goddess that it didn’t set up grainy.

Now, there are all sorts of kits on the market for ‘home made fudge’. They’re not anywhere near like the real thing. I know. I’ve tried them.

There is hope, ladies and gentlemen. Chocolates will out, there is a new day dawning in the annals of fudgedom. And it is

drumroll please

GENIUS FUDGE

This is sort of complicated. So I’ll type slow:

1. In a large microwave safe dish, put 12 ounces of chocolate chips

2. Heat on high for one minute. Stir. Continue until all the chips are melted.

3. Into the melted chocolate, stir one can of prepared creamy style [not whipped] frosting of whatever flavor. Stir well

4. At this point, you can make any additions: a cup of peanut butter, some chopped nuts, dried fruit. Most anything.

5. Spread it out onto a buttered surface [don’t try the non-stick aluminum foil. It works for cakes, not candy] and score the top lightly with a knife before it sets up.

There. That’s it. Five minutes and you have a perfect batch of fudge.

I usually make two batches. One I use milk chocolate chips and caramel/coconut/pecan frosting, and the other dark or bittersweet chips, dark chocolate frosting and add a cup of soy-nut butter because I’m allergic to peanuts. It’s also excellent using butterscotch chips and vanilla frosting, with chopped cashews or crushed pretzels.

This is a recipe to have fun with, something you send to your kid’s school, but only you know how easy it was to make.

Pralines Recipe

If there is a dessert that screams Southern cuisine it has to be pralines. The buttery, melt-in-your-mouth candies have been perfected in Southern states like Louisiana and Georgia, but the treat hasn’t always been a Southern delicacy. Pralines first originated in France during the 17th century. The first pralines were made with almonds instead of pecans and were made for French dignitaries. Throughout the years, they were often given as Christmas gifts and were enjoyed on special occasions. These days, you can enjoy them year round in cities like Savannah and New Orleans where many bakeries and candy shops specialize in making the sweets.

Anytime you make your own candy, you need to allow room for error. There is a feel to candy making that only comes with practice. With that said, do not be discouraged! Pralines are simple to make and one of the foolproof candies. Make sure to watch your candy thermometer and do not cook past the soft ball stage and your pralines will be good enough for those New Orleans candy shops. Or even a French dignitary!

Ingredients
1 cup whole pecans
1 1/2 cup sugar
6 tbsp butter
3/4 brown sugar
1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla

Directions

1. Line a baking sheet with buttered foil. Prepare an ice bath in the sink.

2. Combine the first six ingredients in a large saucepan over medium heat.

3. Heat to a boil. With a candy thermometer, heat to 234° F (approximately 3 minutes from boiling point).

4. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

5. Place saucepan in ice bath and stir mixture until the color lightens and the texture thickens.

6. Drop by spoonfuls onto foiled baking sheet. Cool.