Gail South

Carambola Chips

Slice fruit crosswise into 1/16" stars. Bring sugar and water to boil in heavy 2-qt saucepan, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Add fruit, then remove from heat and let stand, uncovered, 15 min. Pour fruit into sieve set over a bowl and drain 15 min. Put oven rack in middle of oven and preheat to 200. Put line on large baking sheet, then arrange fruit slices in 1 layer on liner. Bake until dry, 1-1.25 hours. Immediately transfer chips to a rack to col. Can be made 1 week ahead and cooled completely, uncovered, then kept, layered w waxed paper, in airtight container at room temp.

Carambola (Star Fruit) 2 firm-ripe yellow, about /12 lb

Sugar 2 c

Water 2 c

Caramel Shards

Lightly oil a 12" square of foil. In a heavy saucepan boil 1.25 c sugar and .25 c water over moderate heat, stirring, until sugar is dissolved. Boil syrup w/o stirring, washing down sugar crystals on side of pan w a brush dipped in cold water, until pale golden. Continue cooking w/o stirring, swirling pan, until deep golden. Immediately pour caramel onto foil and cool completely, about 20 min. Break into shards. Keeps, layered between waxed paper, I day at room temp. 

Chocolate Cream Truffles

Beat cream cheese, honey and liqueur w electric mixer on medium until well blended. Stir in melted chocolate and almonds; cover. Refrigerate at least 2 hours until firm. Roll into 24 balls, using a scant tablespoon for each. Roll in cocoa until evenly coated. Store tightly covered in refrigerator. 

Cream Cheese 8 oz softened

Honey 1 T

Liqueur 1 T almond flavored

Chocolate 4 sq Bakers semi-sweet, melted

Nuts, Almonds 0.25 c ground

Cocoa 0.25 c

Christmas Toffee

Pre-heat oven to 325°F.
Line a large jelly roll pan with aluminum foil. Spray the foil with non-stick cooking spray and then line the pan with saltine crackers.
Place the butter and sugar in a medium sized pot over low medium-low heat. Stir until the butter is melted. Once the butter has melted, bring to a boil for 2-3 minutes. Stir constantly.
Once it's nice and bubbly, remove pan from heat and pour evenly over saltine crackers. Spread mixture with a knife... however it doesn't have to be perfect. Try to move fast during this part so the toffee doesn't harden.
Place pan in the oven and bake for 6-8 minutes. The mixture will spread evenly over the crackers as it bakes.
Remove pan from oven and then sprinkle the chocolate chips on top of the toffee while it's still hot. Let the chocolate chips melt for a few minutes and then spread all over the toffee with a spatula. Sprinkle M&M's (or nuts) on top and then place in the freezer for 30 minutes. Once chocolate has hardened break pieces off the foil and in an container. It will stay fresh for 1 - 2 weeks. For variation use graham crackers.

50 saltine crackers (approx.)
2 sticks (1 cup) butter, cubed
1 cup soft light brown sugar, packed
2 cups chocolate chips
1/2 to 1 cup M&M's, chopped nuts or sliced almonds

Hazelnut Truffles​

​Throw the almonds and hazelnuts into a Vitamix, blender, or food processor. Pulse on medium speed about five times to chop them roughly, and then add the rest of the ingredients. Pulse on medium another five times to bring it all together, using the tamper to help if using a Vitamix or blender, and then blend on high, mixing well with the tamper as you blend, briefly until combined. I usually turn it off to give the blender a rest, and then give it one more good go. Having a few almond chunks is normal (and yummy!). Scrape into a bowl and chill for about 30 minutes before forming into balls. Using your hands, form into balls. I used heaping tablespoon sized portions. To finish, dust with fun stuff like toasted coconut, bee pollen, cacao nibs, flower petals, crushed freeze dried raspberries, and flaky salt. You can even dip them in melted dark chocolate for an extra indulgent treat.
Store covered in the fridge for up to one week.

​½ cup raw almonds
½ cup hazelnuts
1 cup almond flour
1 cup of pitted Medjool dates
1/3 cup raw cacao powder
5 Tbsp Hazelnut Oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp flaky salt
Optional toppings: crushed freeze dried raspberries, pistachios, rose petals, flaky salt, dark chocolate, cacao powder, coconut dust, toasted coconut flakes, bee pollen

Irish Potatoes
Cream butter, cream cheese and vanilla. Slowly add powdered sugar and mix well. Add coconut and mix. Roll into tablespoons sized balls. Roll each piece in cinnamon. Roll into potato shape. Se on parchment lined sheet and chill until set.
Butter     1/4 c
Cream cheese     4 oz
Vanilla     1 tsp
Powdered sugar     4 c
Coconut     2.5 c
Cinnamon     1 tsp

Pecans, Cocoa

Preheat oven to 350. Brush 2 baking sheets w oil. In bowl, coat the pecans w egg white. In another bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. Add nuts and toss to coat well. Spread on sheets in one layer. Bake 15 min. Remove and let cool. Store in airtight container.

Vegetable Oil   1T

Egg White   1

Nuts, Pecans   1lb halves

Cocoa   3T unsweetened

Sugar   0.5c

Salt   0.5tsp

Cinnamon   0.5tsp

Cloves   0.25tsp

Pecans, Sweet Meringue-Baked

Preheat oven to 325. Butter a shallow 10x15 inch jelly roll pan. Beat egg white until stiff. Mix cinnamon and salt into sugar. Keeping the beater running, add sugar mix, 1T at a time. Fold in melted butter and nuts. Spread in prepared pan and bake 15 min. Remove pan from oven. Using a spatula, carefully flip mix one small section at a time. When all the pecans have been turned, return pan to oven and bake an additional 15 min. Watch carefully and do not allow to burn. Cool on paper towels. These are great in a green salad.

Egg White   1

Cinnamon   1tsp

Sal   t0.25tsp

Sugar   0.33c

Butter   4T melted

Nuts   2c pecan halves (.5 lb)

Potatoes, Irish

Cream butter and 3c sugar. Add milk, vanilla, corn syrup and mix thoroughly. Add remaining sugar, mix together w coconut. Form into small balls. Roll in cinnamon

Butter   4T

Sugar   1lb confectioners

Corn Syrup   2 tsp

Milk   4T

Vanilla   2 tsp

Coconut   7oz


Truffles, Pecan Butter

Finely chop 1/2 c pecans. In food processor, grind remaining 2 c nuts with a pinch of salt, occasionally scraping down side of bowl, until pecans release their oil and mix becomes a smooth paste, about 3 min. Transfer nut butter to a small bowl and stir in remaining ingredients until combined well. Form level teaspoons of nut butter into balls and roll, no more than2 at a time, in chopped pecans, pressing gently. Chill in layers separated by wax paper in airtight container at least 1 hr and up to 4 days. Makes about 40

Nuts, Pecans   2.5c toasted

Sugar   3T superfine

Crumbs, Graham Cracker   0.33c

Butter   1t unsalted, softened

Vanilla   1tsp

Cinnamon   0.5tsp