This season, Best Buy is cooking up lots of great examples of how we can make the holidays easier. I’m here to literally help you cook up something super-easy that will make you the hero of any gathering.
But first, let’s go back to 1996. It was my first year with an official holiday duty: to bring something to Christmas brunch with my then-boyfriend-now-husband’s family.
What do you bring to impress a bunch of people you really want to impress?! The best rolled cinnamon bread … from the charming bakery located down the street.
The local bakery hand rolled each loaf into a gooey mess of cinnamon, icing and doughy goodness. They carefully placed each loaf into a clear plastic bag, tied a beautiful ribbon on it and labeled the rolls with a fancy tag that said, “Homemade by Jill with Christmas Joy.” Of course, Jill was not the name of the baker! The bakery, knowing we could all use a little help during a crazy time of the year, selflessly replaced their name with the names of their customers. All glory went to me.
To this day, I’m not sure if the bakery’s intention was to truly help me, or get me to start baking, but from that point forward I always got asked to bring the sweets to family gatherings. It forced me to start educating myself on the finer methods of baking.
Twenty years later, I am here to tell you that I am not a master baker but someone who likes to bake. I’m also someone who knows the real magic is in the packaging and presentation. Over two decades, I have mastered the skill of making simple things look lovely – and you can too.
Take this Fancy Fudge recipe. It is so simple that even my 13-year-old son can make it. And when you take the time to present it in your own special way, people will think you were up all night (go ahead and let them think that)!
Here we go:
Gather the following ingredients:
- 2 12-ounce packages of semi-sweet chocolate chips (you can use dark chocolate or milk chocolate)
- 1 jar of marshmallow cream
- ½ tsp. salt
- 1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
- 1 pinch of cinnamon
- 2 tsp. vanilla flavor
- 1 cup holiday candy-coated chocolates candies or
- 1 cup walnut pieces
- Lightly grease a 9×9 inch pan – set aside.
- Mix the chocolate chips, marshmallow cream, salt and condensed milk into a pan and heat on low, stirring until completely melted and smooth.
- Remove the pan from heat and add the vanilla, cinnamon and any other additions you want.
- Stir until thoroughly mixed, then pour the chocolate goodness into the greased pan and let cool on counter. Once the fudge is cooled, cut bite-sized pieces to display on a fancy plate, package them up with a ribbon and special homemade tag or create your own whimsical package. Then sit back and enjoy the compliments … and the fudge.