Candy Cane Popcorn & a Giveaway


One of our favorite family traditions each year around Christmas time is to sit down together and watch one of our favorite Christmas Movies.  Because Christmas time is special, its fun to add a little extra pizzazz to our popcorn.  This year I decided to make some White Chocolate Candy Cane Popcorn and throw in these fun, festive-colored Sixlets from SweetWorks.

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I just love Sixlets…don’t you?  Sixlets always remind me of growing up.  My 4 siblings and I used to walk (almost 2 miles one way) down to the Old Fashioned Drug Store on the occasional Saturday and buy candy (for a penny or 5 cents—Did I just date myself?).  My sisters and I would always buy a little sleeve of Sixlets.

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I was recently contacted by Sweet Works about doing a giveaway and was excited to see one of my favorite childhood candies in all sorts of fun colors.  And you know how much little things like this make me happy!  And, colorful chocolate candy additions make this Candy Cane Peppermint Popcorn that much more perfect!

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Want the recipe for your family?

Candy Cane Popcorn

12 oz. of white chocolate, melted (I prefer the chocolate blocks but chocolate chips or white candy melts will work too)

1/4 cup of un-popped popcorn (measure it un-popped and then pop it)

1/2 cup of crushed candy canes

2-3 drops peppermint oil

1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)

dash of salt (optional)

Red and White Sixlets (or candy of your choice)

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Directions:

1. Pop your popcorn and make sure to remove all the un-popped popcorn kernels.  Place in a large mixing bowl with ample room to mix. 

2. Melt white chocolate in a double boiler or in the microwave.  White chocolate melts better and more smoothly for me when I do it in a double boiler.  (Or in a pan over a pan of water on the stove…you can google it if needed).

3. Add crushed candy canes and peppermint oil to melted white chocolate and stir quickly.  Pour over popcorn and mix it so that all the popcorn is covered.  It is helpful to have another set of hands for this part if possible. 

4. Spread out in a jelly roll pan and then while still sticky,  the candy over the top of the popcorn.  Add a dash of salt over the popcorn.

5. Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave and drizzle over the popcorn.  Set aside and let the chocolate harden.

6. Break up into bite size pieces and serve up in a bowl or a gift bag.

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Want to win your own set of candy from SweetWorks?  SweetWorks is giving one Idea Room reader the following:

  • 14oz. bag of Celebration by SweetWorks Christmas Mix Sixlets
  • 8oz. bag of Celebration by SweetWorks Christmas Mix Gumballs
  • 5oz jar of Celebration by SweetWorks Red/White Shimmer Pearls
  • 5oz jar of Celebration by SweetWorks Christmas Mix Pearls
  • Sixlets Christmas Cane
  • Niagara Chocolate Santa
  • Niagara Chocolate Rocking Horse
  • Ovation Dark Mint Filled Break-A-Part
  • 3.5oz box of Mint Ovation Sticks
  • Milk Chocolate Orange Balls

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If you would like to be entered for a chance to win this gift package, please follow the directions in the Rafflecopter Box below.

*If you are on a mobile device, you may need to enter on a computer for the widget to work properly.  Depending on your internet speed or the busy-ness of the widget, you may need to wait a few seconds for it to load properly.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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This is going to be a quick one so be sure to enter ASAP.  The winner will be contacted and have only 24 hours to respond before a new winner will be chosen!!  Giveaway will end on December 16th at Midnight (MST).

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Want to make this Candy Cane Peppermint Popcorn and give it away this year?  Here is a FREE Printable Gift Tag for you to download if you would like.

{Candy Cane Peppermint Popcorn}

*If you are not a fan of The Idea Room on Facebook, you will need to click like first and become a fan. After you become a fan you will need to click on “Get your free gift” in the upper right hand corner of the Idea Room FB page and then click on “Previous Downloads”.

 

candy-popcorn

*Fine Print: Giveaway ends at 11:59pm (MST) on December 16, 2013 . One winner will receive the candy items specified above.  Must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of the U.S.A. to enter. This giveaway is in no way affiliated with Facebook or Pinterest. Facebook and Pinterest will be completely released by each entrant. One entry per person. Entry includes filling out the Rafflecopter form above. Winner will be chosen using random.org. and will be notified via email within a few hours of the giveaway closing time. Winners will be announced on the post, not on Facebook. The winners must respond within 24 hours of receiving the email or a new winner will be chosen. No purchase necessary. **This is a sponsored post on behalf of Sweet Works.  However, all statements and opinions are mine and mine alone.

Peppermint Bark Brownies

I LOVE brownies…and I LOVE me some Peppermint…so…it makes total sense to me to combine the two with these delicious…

Peppermint Bark Brownies!

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If you love peppermint and brownies like I do…you may want to check out some of these past Idea Room Recipes:

Peppermint Candy Cane Donuts

Candy Cane Pancakes

Candy Cane Swirl Bundt Cake

Chocolate Gingerbread Cookies

Peppermint Chocolate Cookies

Mississippi Mud Brownies

Oreo Brownies

Peppermint Cake

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These are unbelievably easy to make.  You don’t need any fancy recipe and you can even throw them together with a boxed brownie mix….which comes in handy when you are busy due to the holiday rush.

Peppermint-Bark-Brownies 1

Peppermint Bark Brownies

Peppermint Bark Brownies

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
  • ½ cup plus 2 Tablespoons boiling water
  • 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
  • 4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ cup plus 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2½ cups sugar
  • 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • Peppermint Bark Topping
  • 1 cup of white chocolate chips
  • 2-3 crushed Peppermint candy canes

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with foil (let it hang over top of pan) and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Whisk cocoa and boiling water together in large bowl until smooth. Add unsweetened chocolate and whisk until chocolate is melted. Whisk in melted butter and oil. (Mixture may look curdled.) Add eggs, yolks, and vanilla and continue to whisk until smooth and fully incorporated. Whisk in sugar until fully incorporated. Add flour and salt and mix with rubber spatula until combined. Fold in bittersweet chocolate pieces.
  3. Scrape batter into prepared pan and bake until toothpick inserted halfway between edge and center comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer pan to wire rack and let cool for 20-30 minutes.
  4. Melt chocolate chips in the microwave in 20 second intervals, stirring between each. Stir till smooth and spread on the top of the lukewarm brownies. Sprinkle the still warm chocolate with the crushed peppermint candy canes. Let cool till the chocolate has hardened into a nice Peppermint Bark.
  5. Using foil overhang, lift brownies from pan. Cut into 2-inch squares and serve. Brownies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
http://www.theidearoom.net/2013/12/peppermint-bark-brownies.html

Peppermint-Bark-Brownies 2Serve with LOTS of ice cold milk and a stripe-y straw…cause really…it tastes so much better when it is served up cute!  You can even serve it up in a Christmas-y milk bottle.  Don’t you just love this tiny little milk bottle wreath?  So cute right?

Peppermint-Bark-Brownies 5I am obsessed with wreaths right now!  I made this by stealing a small stalk right off of the back of my box wood wreath that is in my family room.  Then I simply shaped it into a round wreath and wrapped a small piece of wire around it to hold it into a wreath shape.

Peppermint-Bark-Brownies 6I am thinking of taking everything now and “putting a wreath on it”!  haha!  I for sure want to add some wreaths to the tops of my gifts now!

Peppermint-Bark-Brownies 7So go ahead and make these for your next holiday party.  For one…everyone loves a good Brownie.  And two…Peppermint!  Who doesn’t love how tasty and festive Peppermint is this time of year!

  Peppermint-Bark-Brownies 9And when you run out of milk…and still have some Peppermint Bark Brownies left…you can always get a refill!

Peppermint-Bark-Brownies 12_edited-1  Peppermint and Chocolate…are you a fan?


Candy cane swirl cake

This is a story about a Candy Cane Swirl Cake that tasted better than it looked…

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{Don’t let the picture fool you…that is some creative photography…}

I don’t really share my craft/cooking fails with you guys and I don’t want you to think that I never have any…cause believe me…I do.  Not everything turns out like I had imagined it in my head.  Can anyone relate?  I wanted to share this delicious cake we made over the Christmas holidays but it was just not pretty enough to make the cut.  Even though it tasted really great. 

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{See?  I told you!}

I originally saw the Candy Cane Swirl Cake at Betty Crocker.  But instead of using a box cake, I decided to make my favorite white cake recipe from scratch.

White Cake Recipe

  • 1 cup butter

  • 2 cups white sugar

  • 4 large eggs

  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

  • 3 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1 3/4 cups milk

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. Grease and flour pans lightly. I used three 8 inch round pans.

  3. Cream together butter & vanilla extract.

  4. Add sugar slowly until all is added and it is mixed well.

  5. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.

  6. In a separate bowl sift flour, baking powder and salt together twice.

  7. Now add flour mixture, alternating between the milk and flour. Mixing well after each again.

  8. ______________________________

1/2 teaspoon red food color (see Directions #1 below)

1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract (see Directions #1 below)

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Directions:

1. Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Generously grease and flour 12-cup fluted tube cake pan. Make cake batter as directed above. Pour about 2 cups batter into pan. In small bowl, pour about 3/4 cup batter; stir in food color and peppermint extract. Carefully pour pink batter over white batter in pan. Carefully pour remaining white batter over pink batter.

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2. Bake cake at 350°F and cool completely.

3. In small bowl, mix white icing ingredients. If necessary, stir in additional milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until smooth and spreadable. Spread over cake. Sprinkle crushed candy on top. Store loosely covered.

White Icing:

1 cup powdered sugar

1 tablespoon milk or water

1/2 teaspoon vanilla, if desired

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I am not quite sure why my cake fell apart.  Maybe the box cake would have been better to use in the bundt pan.  But it sure did taste good.  And there were several salvageable pieces of cake that I was able to serve up that looked halfway decent.  Hehe.  And with some creative photography I was almost able to make it look…well…somewhat presentable.

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I have decided to share more of these creativity failures with you as part of trying to keep it real.  What do you think?  Are you looking forward to seeing some of my creative catastrophes??

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