Friday, 6 December 2013

Candy Cane Hearts & Friday Smile

I'm linking this post to Annie's Friday Smile as it made me feel happy making these and gave me a festive kick! I hope you like them and there's another smile at the end!

I've just made some treats for a few of my friends, to give in place of Christmas cards, after seeing this idea on Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary Blog.   
It's a super food blog with lots of ideas and interesting posts about her life. 
These candy cane hearts are simple and good fun to make.

How to do;
I snapped a bit off the ends of the candy canes and removed all of the cello wrap from them.
I placed the shortened canes in pairs onto a teflon baking sheet on a baking tray and gently heated, 4 at a time, in the oven for around 3 minutes at 170C. 
(It was advised 3 to 5 mins at 180C but I found it too high and too long so I adjusted my timing.) Take care not to over heat as they only need to soften and overheating will spread them out into an unusable goo, as with my first batch. Luckily I had a few spare canes.
 Heat a few at a time or they'll harden again before they can be joined together. 
Working as quickly as I could, I squidged together the top and the point to form the heart shape and pressed a lolly stick into the point.

I laid them on baking parchment whilst I prepared the next batch for the oven.

When the hearts were all joined I filled the centres with melted chocolate and added sprinkles to decorate.
I decided to use up all the ends that I had snapped off the canes and made them into star shapes. Why waste?
With a blob of chocolate and sprinkles to hide the join they look quite effective.
Placed in cello wrap bags, and decorated with these mini self adhesive gift cards .... the perfect finishing touch.
Shopping guide and my costs for 24 treats (18 hearts and 6 stars)

Candy canes 3 boxes of 12 x 75p (2 canes used for each) £2.25     from Home Bargains

Gift cards 1 packet of 24                                                     75p                  ..       ..
Food sticks packet of 50 for £1           half packet used         50p                   ..       ..
Chocolate   2 bars   @ £1                                                £2.00                  ..        ..
Sprinkles White chic stars and mini smartie type
   2 tubs x  90p                    only half of each tub used          90p     Morrisons

                                          Total cost £6.40  = approx 27p per unit

plus ribbon and cello packets which I had in already.
Here's my other smile!
 Recently when two of my grandees visited from Brighton we met them at the station and I had not just the thrill of seeing my family but also of seeing this train on the next platform. Sorry.....poor pics taken on the phone.
It was the Class 6233 Duchess of Sutherland and was the train that took the Queen around Wales to greet the people for her Jubilee year. It is a very special preserved Royal Service steam locomotive and there are more details for steam buffs HERE. It was immaculate and is a real blast from the past reminding me of when I used to travel in these monsters when I was young.

The curly girlies from Brighton were thrilled and amazed to see lace curtains and lamps in the pullmans and the tables set beautifully for dinner. I was so thrilled that they had this wonderful experience.


Annie said...

Oh Jo what a fab post and I'm grinning from ear to ear too now so thanks for joining in the fun this week.
Annie xxxx

tilly said...

What a lovely post........A great fab train, I used to go to Wales every year on steam trains......(shows my age lol)
those little treats are so simple but clever and will be loved by those who get them....

Twiglet said...

Fab post - I must show G the train - he is a fan. Your festive treats are brilliant - great idea. x Jo

Pearly Queen said...

This post is not compatible with my diet :-(


Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

Thank you for visiting while Bleubeard and I slept. This recipe sounds doable. I might have to try it, and it's definitely affordable, even on MY budget (grin).

What a beautiful train. I think I saw it on TV during the jubilee celebration. We got bits and pieces over here in America.

Have a great Friday smile, cause I'm sure smiling.

fairy thoughts said...

Ah Jo what not to love it choc choc after all and the train .... Fantastic they are very lucky curly girlies :)

by Gill said...

what a clever idea to use the candy canes like that. Not sure my teeth would approve though.
Nice post Jo

Gill x

mamapez5 said...

How lucky to see that train. It's a beauty.
I love the candy-cane hearts. That's one to remember for next year! Kate x

Nan G said...

Oh yummy! How cool to see that special train too. Hugs from me smiling!

Hettie said...

Aww! Wonderful Jo! Love old steam trains and Hubby and I love York for the Steam Museum - in fact that is the easiest way I have of getting a weekend in York! Shhh! Our secret!

PS you remember you kindly sent me some bakers twine? I keep losing it and finding it at the wrong time. This weekend I managed to find it and used a fair bit of it. Will share how shortly! TY.