Friday, March 16, 2012

St. Patrick's Day

Do you do anything special for St. Patrick's Day? I thought I'd share a couple recipes related to the day. These are a couple fun recipes and not your main meal. Enjoy!

St. Patrick's Day Popcorn

Serves: 24
Source: Country Woman

4 quarts popped popcorn
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter
8 to 10 drops green food coloring
Place popcorn in a large roasting pan; keep warm in a 250° oven. Meanwhile, in a large heavy saucepan, combine the sugars, water, corn syrup, vinegar and salt. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. Cook, stirring occasionally, until a candy thermometer reads 260° (hard-ball stage).
Remove from the heat; stir in butter until melted. Stir in food coloring. Drizzle over warm popcorn and toss to coat. Cool. Break into pieces. Store in an airtight container.

I LOVE Country Woman Magazine. The recipes in it are always good ones IMHO. Next up is another reliable source, Reynolds Wrap company.

St. Patrick's Day Cookies

Source: Reynolds® Parchment Paper

1 package (16.5 oz.) refrigerated sugar cookie dough
2/3 cup flour

1 box (1 lb.) confectioners' sugar
3 tablespoons meringue powder (powdered egg whites)
6 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon flavoring extract, optional
Green, neon green, black, yellow, red, orange, and blue food coloring

Dark green and neon green sugar crystals
Yellow and green mini candy-coated chocolate candies
Miniature marshmallows
Chocolate frosting
PREHEAT oven to 350°F.

LINE cookie sheets with Reynolds Parchment Paper; set aside. No need to add extra grease or spray your cookie sheets.
KNEAD flour into sugar cookie dough until well blended.
ROLL out half of cookie dough at a time to 1/4-inch thickness between lightly floured sheets of Parchment Paper. Using circles, shamrocks and leprechaun hat shaped cookie cutters, cut out cookies; place on parchment-lined cookie sheets.
BAKE 7 to 12 minutes, depending on the size of the cookies or until the edges begin to brown. Let stand one minute on cookie sheets. Slide Parchment Paper with cookies onto a wire rack to cool completely.

BEAT powdered sugar, meringue powder, water and extract in a large bowl,
with an electric mixer, on high speed until smooth and thick, about 1 minute.

DIVIDE icing into 8 small bowls. Keep one bowl of frosting white. Stir food coloring in remaining frosting to make green, neon green, black, yellow, blue, orange, and red icing. Cover icing tightly when not in use, icing dries quickly.
PIPE outlines of cookies with contrasting colors of icing using a decorating bag with tip. Or, place icing in plastic zipper bags. Snip off one corner with scissors and use to pipe icing.

FOR SUGARED OUTLINES, sprinkle heavily with sugar crystals while icing
is wet. Lightly shake off excess crystals. TIP: Sprinkle over Parchment Paper to catch excess for reuse.
TO ICE INSIDE OUTLINES, add a little water to thin icing, if necessary. Spoon a small amount of icing onto outlined cookies. Using a brush, small spatula or your finger, spread icing up to outline to fill in spaces.

FOR SHAMROCKS, follow directions above for outlining and icing the
cookies with green outlines or neon green outlines and icing.
FOR POTS OF GOLD, pipe black icing onto unfrosted round cookies to outline the handle and the shape of the pot. For the "gold", use yellow icing as the glue to attach yellow mini candy-coated candies. Tip: Dots of frosting can be substituted if yellow candies are not available in the quantities that you need.

FOR RAINBOWS, pipe curved lines of colors of the rainbow around the top
edge of round cookies. To make the clouds, use scissors to cut miniature
marshmallows in half. Press the cut edge down on the ends of the

FOR LEPRECHAN HATS, follow directions above for outlining and icing the
hats with green frosting. Pipe chocolate frosting across cookies for a
hat band. Pipe a square of yellow frosting for a buckle on the hat band.
When icing is dry, pipe details of hat with green frosting.

FOR MESSAGE COOKIES, follow directions above for icing the cookies.
While the icing is still wet, add a border of coordinating mini candy-coated chocolate candies; let dry. Pipe messages with either contrasting color icing or chocolate frosting.

- Cover icing at all times. Icing can dry out quickly.
- Let icing dry before adding a different color of icing. If icing is still wet, colors will blend.

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