Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Sweet Treats

I had an idea last week that I was going to turn myself into some sort of Willy Wonka and make loads and loads of sweets to give as Christmas gifts.  I went to the supermarket and stocked up on sugar, cream, syrup, chocolate etc. and at the weekend began creating (after a two day mission to try to find a sugar thermometer!).

I had the perfect cookbook to work from, Sweet Treats, made by those behind the utterly wonderful Australian magazine, Frankie.  If you are unfamiliar with this magazine, I cannot recommend it enough!  It is full of cute handmade items, features on artists and musicians, old fashioned recipes and other inspiring, beautiful and nostalgic things :)  I used to buy my copy at Borders, but now I get the issues delivered to my house (for my last two birthdays, Steve has brought me a much loved subscription to it!)

As the magazine is Australian, the measurements are in cups - which to be honest, I prefer to conventional weighing scales, it's so much quicker and seems to create less mess somehow!  Also, it took some research on good old Google to work out what Glucose Syrup is (Corn Syrup to Americans, Golden Syrup to British!)  I had already made the honeycomb a few months ago, which was fairly successful, except I think I became a bit over excited when adding the bicarbonate of soda, had a strange chemically taste - urg!

This weekend I tried out peanut brittle, chocolate truffles, brown cow caramels and candy hearts (or in my case, candy jigsaw pieces!)  Some were more successful than others, but all in all, the recipes were clear and easy, often they just required a lot of time and patience.  My first batch of toffee did not turn out too well, because I was too impatient and didn't allow the sugar to get hot enough!  

I have just finished work for Christmas, so now it is time to relax (and try to eat my way through the 17 mince pies that we still have in the cupboard!)
Merry Christmas!


  1. The peanut brittle looks lovely in the jars. Your scales are so cute, where did you get them from?

  2. Haha this is so sweet! My family's snowed in, so my mum is spending the time baking huge meals and cakes galore! Love the candy jigsaw :)

  3. wow, that all looks amazing, and so cute in the jars :)
    i've been trying hand-made gifts too, it's so much more fun huh?

  4. Brilliant job Katie. Glad you managed to find a sugar thermometer. So now it's Katie makes Sweeties. Happy Christmas.

  5. Wow all that stuff looks amazing! I planned to do this too and make lots of treats in hampers for xmas gifts. Though being me, I planned too much amongst the various uni deadlines and ended up cutting recipes one by one til I just made sugar cookies and mince pies! Good though, and appreciated too :) makes you feel all warm inside! x

  6. Oh god that all looks delicious! The peanut brittle is my favourite! Yum.

  7. argggghhhhhhhhhhhh, I LOVE your scales! Where are they from??! x

  8. :o I love the candy jigsaws, super cute!
    Nom, these look too yummy :D

  9. How great is Frankie Magazine?? I also got the treats book but i havent yet had the time to make any of it! Every page is full of great treats!

    The peanut brittle jars look so lovely and amazing! Looks so great Katie!




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