Cranberry Almond Bites

Photo Dec 18, 10 44 22 AM

I feel like I am so on the ball this year!

Photo Dec 18, 11 45 51 AM

The shopping and wrapping were finished the first week in December – even the stocking stuffers which I usually leave for last because I dread wrapping them. Cookies and candy have been completed and delivered to friends and family a couple of days ago. Christmas cards have been mailed.

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We’ve even had time to relax, drive around and see the beautiful holiday lights – and later today we’re headed out to see our second movie in a week!

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Usually this is a hectic time of year but I made a promise to myself that I wouldn’t allow that to happen this holiday season. It’s my favorite time of year and I really love to soak it all in. I promised myself I’d try my hardest to live in the present moment and really enjoy it. Something I’m not able to do if I’m running behind and frantic to cross things off my to-do list.

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(These are little olive jar tongs and work wonderfully for dipping candy!)

Now there’s three days until Christmas Eve and the only things left on my important to-do list are groceries and prep for Christmas breakfast and Linner. We’ll have to see what other kinds of holiday fun we can plan between now and Christmas!

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Cranberry Almond Bites

1 1/2 Cups of  Dried Cranberries, soaked in water in a small bowl for 1 hour then drained and dried between layers of paper towels

3/4 Cup of Dairy Free Butter, melted

1 lb of Powdered Sugar

1 Tablespoon of Pure Vanilla Extract

1 Tablespoon of Pure Almond Extract

1 Bag (8 ounces) of Shredded Unsweetened Coconut (I used Let’s Do Organic)

2 Cups of Sliced Almonds

14 ounces of Sweetened Condensed Coconut Milk (I used two 7.4 ounce cans of Let’s Do Organic)

8 3 ounce each Bars of Theo Organic 70% Dark Chocolate Bars

Chop the cranberries and mix all ingredients except the chocolate in a bowl, cover and refrigerate until completely set – about 3 hours.

Line two baking sheets with parchment and using about 1 1/2 teaspoons of candy, roll into small balls and place on baking trays. Cover and refrigerate until completely set – 3 hours or over night.

In a double boiler melt the chocolate squares. Using small tongs (or place each ball on a large fork and scoop the chocolate over the ball) dip the balls quickly into the chocolate, shake off any excess, and place them back on the baking sheets. Repeat until they are all covered and allow the chocolate to set up. I placed mine outside to set up because it’s cold here but you could also do a quick set in the fridge for 30 minutes. Store in an airtight container.

**Depending on the size of your candies, you may have some leftover melted chocolate. You can dollop it onto parchment and allow it to cool into discs for snacking, or what I like to do is fold in some add ins that you have on hand and create another type of candy.  Once things are stirred together, a little bit of left over chocolate goes a long way. This time I used gluten free Rice Chex cereal and dried cranberries – then I drop them by the teaspoon into cute little paper or foil cups. You can add any combination of things you like. Nuts, dried fruits, pretzels, cereal, marshmallows, chopped up candy canes…

Photo Dec 18, 11 52 46 AM

 

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