Paying Our Babysitter in Groceries: Candy Cane Snowballs

Remember the weekend? Yeah, me either.

Waaay, back during the weekend we asked my sister, Rachel, to babysit Little K while E and I went out to a friend’s house for dinner, drinks, and board games (cuz we’re cool like that, yo.). I knew I wanted to bring a dessert along to share and make another to give to Rachel and her boyfriend as a “thank you for babysitting and putting up with our ridiculous dogs.” I didn’t have all the ingredients I needed and didn’t feel like going to the grocery store myself (because I have a 6 month old baby. Do you need more explanation?), so I asked E to go out for groceries and breakfast right away on Saturday morning. When he got home and brought the groceries in the house I started unpacking. In addition to the list I had given him, he bought a dozen eggs, two gallons of milk, two avocados, and a loaf of bread. Normally I’d say, “Thanks E!” Except I had went to the grocery store not two days before and gotten the staples. In our fridge we now have six avocados, four gallons of milk, two dozen eggs, a four loaves of bread. Hmm, is it me or does that seem like a little much for two people to eat? I stashed all the bread in the freezer, planned to make guac for us (review coming soon!), and started boiling some eggs for an easy weekday breakfast. But what to do with all that milk… I know! We’ll pay our babysitters with it!

So when Rachel and Brandon left that evening, they left with Candy Cane Snowballs and a gallon of milk (plus the half gallon they drank with their pizza that night). You might think, “Krystal, you still have two and a half gallons left to drink. That’s too much!” To which I’d reply, “Reader, I drink an exorbitant amount of milk. (Don’t worry, it’s skim.) It won’t be a problem.” And, I can tell you, four days later we’re down to a gallon and a quarter or so. BAM.

P.S. After we got home that evening Rachel and I got into a very serious discussion about the quality of milk found at the popular store with a big red bullseye. We agreed the flavor of it is a little “off” and decided it had to do with the type of pasteurization they do. The boys sat in silence during this discussion until E said, “When I imagined my Saturday night, I didn’t imagine taking part in a in-depth discussion on the quality of milk at our local grocery stores. I must’ve forgotten that I married a Wisconsin farm girl.” Yep, and you’re stuck with me, sweetie!

Candy Cane Snowballs

Overall: five-star

I found this recipe by chance, after searching around for a way to use up some leftover candy canes. They are a sweet treat and go really well with a cup of coffee. We loved them! My sister said they’re a minty version of Russian tea cakes.

Ease to Prepare: four-star

I didn’t refrigerate my batter for three to four hours. Instead I followed the “or easy to handle;” I think it was about an hour and a half. They’re very easy to prepare and the frosting step is easier than most other frosted cookies. Just pick up your cookie, turn it over, and dunk it in the frosting. Fast, easy, and no extra utensils to clean. From start to finish, it does take a while to make these so set aside an afternoon. Between the chill time, cook time, cooling time, and time for the frosting to set – you’re looking at a several hour ordeal.

Instructions: four-star

Smash your candy canes up a little and then throw them in the food processor. Chop them as fine as you’d like. I went pretty fine – you don’t want anyone to crack a tooth!

As I mentioned, I think the three to four hour chill time is overdoing it so toss that bit out the window. I also used almond bark – because I had it – instead of candy coating. Otherwise I think the instructions are great! I took a star though because the recipe is for five dozen. I think that’s quite a lot, unless you’re bringing them to a holiday potluck or a school bake sale. I made a half batch and still had way more than I needed to split it between myself and my sister.

Food: five-star

We absolutely love these! I added a bit of red food coloring to the almond bark to make them more Valentine’s themed. The peppermint crunch on top is perfect – not too minty and not too crunchy. It goes so well with a bit of coffee, I’d almost say it’s a requirement have some tea or coffee nearby when you serve these puppies. They aren’t overly sweet either and the pecans add a nice, subtle nuttiness.

Clean up: four-star

There is a good deal of clean up, but about the amount you’d expect for frosted cookies. A mixing bowl, food processor, a couple cookie sheets and a bowl for frosting.

Question: Do any of you cool your cookies on a brown paper bag? I grew up cutting a brown bag open and using the inside of that instead of a wire rack. I think it’s what my Grandma has always done and it just seems natural to me. #lifehack

 Cost: one dollar

I can still post Valentine’s pictures. Can too! Can too! You can’t stop me.

There actually isn’t a whole lot to this recipe, the peppermint and candy coating kind of steal the show. I actually think these gain a dollar sign back since they use up an ingredient you otherwise would probably be tossing (candy canes).

Any one feel like babysitting any time soon? I think I have a couple avocados and loaves of bread that are calling your name! Who here uses the brown paper bag method for cooling your cookies? Anyone, anyone?


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