Saturday, December 29, 2012

Chocolate Favors for New Year's Eve

Ring in the New Year
Champagne, Party Hats
Chocolate Favors!
Chocolate Favors
Need a quick and festive chocolate treat for your New Year's Eve party?
Look no farther than your local candy & cake decoration supply shop.
Lucky for us, there's one close by.
Over the last 20 years, I have built up quite an impressive collection of candy molds that collectively tell the story of our daughters' activities and parties.  Let's see, I remember the ballet slippers, Pooh Bear & honey pots, soccer balls, Ariel & Friends, stars, pianos, teacups, artist palettes, flowers, softballs & bats, not to mention the molds for holidays including Valentine's Day and Chanukah.  I've even made tennis rackets for my tennis group. 
So when our daughter wanted to create something festive for New Year's Eve, but didn't have a lot of time, she knew exactly what to do:  chocolate lollipops!  A quick stop at Kake Kreations (isn't that a darling name?) and 30 minutes later, she was busy in the kitchen.  In case you've never made these, let me show you how easy it is.
2-3 bags of 1 lb. bags of (milk, dark or white) chocolate candy wafers, 4" sticks, small cellophane bags, plastic squeeze bottle, and of course your candy mold of choice.  Our daughter found one with a party hat, champagne bottle and martini glass! 
Making chocolate with candy molds
You will also need a warming tray or griddle, kitchen towel, 2-cup Pyrex measuring cup or bowl, a mixing spoon and an empty shelf in your freezer!
Start by pouring about 1/2 lb. of wafers into a Pyrex bowl.  Microwave for 1 minute at 50% power.  Stir.  Microwave for another 30 seconds at 50% power and stir again.  Repeat 2-3 times until the chocolate is melted, but not burnt! 
Pour chocolate into squeeze bottle, and slowly fill molds.  Do not overfill.  Tap mold gently so chocolate spreads into the small corners of the molds.   For those molds that require sticks, place stick into mold, turning stick slightly into chocolate. 
Place mold into freezer for 8-10 minutes until firm. 
While waiting, place both Pyrex bowl and squeeze bottle onto warming tray or griddle, on top of a clean kitchen towel.  Be sure griddle is set at lowest warming temperature.  This keeps chocolate melted and ready for next fill.  Repeat as many times as you need, melting 1/2 lb. of chocolate at a time. 
Gently turn mold upside down and pop out chocolate onto paper towel.  
chocolate treats for parties
Place chocolate molds into individual cellophane bags.
Tie with festive curling ribbon.
chocolate ideas for new years eve
You can also create tags with each guest's name or with "Happy New Year" and tie them to the stick as well.  These can be used as table place cards.  Or poke these into a Styrofoam block, covered with bright cellophane and use it as a centerpiece. 
And here's a hint to getting the leftover chocolate out of the bottle:  place in freezer for an hour.  Then squeeze bottle, loosening chocolate from sides, and shake the small chocolate pieces out.  Eat when no one is looking!
Have a safe, warm and enjoyable
New Year's Eve celebration! 
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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

12/12/12 - Highlighting 12 Favorite Projects of 2012

Ahhh, the Number 12.  There must be at least a dozen references for today's numerical date including 12 months in a year, 12 inches in a foot, 12 face cards in a deck, 12 signs of the Zodiac, 12 hours on a clock face -- and the list goes on and on. 

So, in honor of today's special date of 12/12/12, I want to highlight a dozen of my most popular blog posts of the year.  So grab a cup of coffee and relax while I share 12 projects from 2012.

Love plaque
You Had Me At Hello Love Plaque
tin can alley
Pull Tab in Case of Chocolate Emergency
Tiered Terra Cotta Pots
Bulletin Board Framed with Chicken Wire & Burlap

altered chalkboard
Coffee Notes Altered Chalkboard

using napkins and mod podge on tiles
Tile Coasters Using Bar Napkins

placecards for the holidays
Potted Plant Place cards

altered birdhouse crafts
Spring is For the Birds
gifts for teachers
Teacher Appreciation Gift
holiday crafts candles
Sparkle, Shimmer & Twine

chanukah and christmas holiday crafts
Festive Holiday Gift Pails
What's your favorite project that you created this year?  I would love to see it, so please leave me a comment with the link, and I might just stop by for a visit.

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