It’s the day after Halloween, and whether you took the kids out for a night of Trick-or-Treating or stocked up your own house for the little boys and ghouls, taking a post-haunting inventory of the number of sweets in your house inevitably leads to the same cry of desperation:
What the hell am I supposed to do with all of this candy?
It’s not that the candy will go to waste, but more that you run the risk of eating all the sugary, sweet garbage by yourself. The smallest thing could trigger you unexpectedly binge-eating an entire bag of the Milky Way, Three Musketeers, & Snickers fun-sized combo packs. It’s not your fault, those bite-sized squares of chocolate lured you into a false sense of security with empty promises of portion control and you were too weak to resist. You wake up next to the empty bag in a cold sweat, wrappers strewn across the floor and sticking to your sweatpants-let’s be real, you’re not fitting into anything else at this point–and drag yourself to the sink to splash some cold water on your face. Taking a long-hard look at yourself in the mirror, you wonder how you could have avoided all this.
There are easy, preventive measures you can take to stay away from the inevitable Halloween Hangover. Namely, get the candy out of your house! If you are a parent, encourage your kids to pick out their favorite candies and donate the rest to charity. There are plenty of charitable organizations that accept Halloween candy donations, like Operation Shoebox, an organization that will send the candy to American troops who are abroad.
If you are feeling crafty, then you might also want to consider taking your Halloween candy to the next level to a full-fledged dessert. An easy and obscenely delicious way to do this is to take those devilish fun-sized chocolates and bake them into cookie pops. It might seem counter-productive to replace the chocolate’s plastic wrapping with a layer of cookie dough, but it will make you think twice before you over-indulge.
You will need:
1 bag of fun-sized chocolates (whichever brand you have works fine)
1 roll of pre-made sugar cookie dough (the kind you would use for slice-and-bake cookies)
1 baking tray
Non-stick aluminum foil
20-30 wooden popsicle sticks
The baking directions are as minimalist as the list of ingredients:
Preheat the oven to 375°F and unwrap the chocolates from their individual wrapping. Place the aluminum foil on the baking tray.
Take the same amount of dough you would use to make a normal sugar cookie, roll it into a ball and flatten it. Place the stick flat on top of the dough so that the end is at the center, and place the chocolate on top of the stick. Then wrap the dough around the candy, and voila! Repeat until all the chocolates have been covered and arrange them two inches apart on the baking sheet.
Once the pops are on the sheet, bake for 10-12 minutes or until the edges start to get brown. Remove the tray from the oven. Use a spatula to remove the cookies from the tray and let them cool for at least an hour. Even though the cookies have the wooden sticks in them, DO NOT pick them up by the stick until you’ve let them cool completely.
The best part about cookie pops is that they are just way more fun to eat! Much more fun that, say, scarfing down an entire bag in one night – AMIRITE? The fun factor also makes them a great gift because you can wrap them in cellophane and tie with a ribbon individually, or use several of them to make a cookie pop bouquet. Share them with whomever you like: friends, co-workers, or the protesters at your local #Occupy park/plaza/city center. Chances are they didn’t have time to partake in the merriment, or at least get any candy, and they could use the sugar if they have to be there day in and day out. The possibilities are endless.
Necessity, as they say, is the mother of invention, and while you may not feel the need to rid yourself of those fun sized chocolates, you will eventually need to find a way to use the traditional Halloween cast-off candy. Namely, candy corn, because the last time anyone actually ate candy corn was from a bowl sitting in their grandmother’s living room…in December. The orange, white, and yellow sweets will sour the happy faces of any trick-or-treaters, yet candy corn continues to be bought and sold by the truck-full.
To end this cycle of purchase and neglect, BTR recommends an easy, no-bake recipe for candy corn bark. The beauty of this recipe is that it allows you to use up all of your unwanted candy corn, pretzels, and raisins. As an added bonus, if you were a victim of the October Blizzageddon 2011, the recipe requires no ovens, only a hot stove or fire.
You will need:
16 sandwich cookies (like Oreos), chopped
1 ½ cups broken small pretzels
1 ½ pounds white chocolate, broken into squares
2 cups candy corn
Orange and brown sprinkles.
Spread the cookies, pretzels, and raisins on a lightly greased baking sheet. Melt the chocolate in a microwave OR boil a pot of water and set another bowl over the boiling water and melt the chocolate in the second bowl. (This is called tempering chocolate, and is the best way to melt chocolate without burning it!) Let the chocolate melt until liquefied, but still a bit chunky. Remove form the heat and then stir until smooth.
Drizzle the chocolate over the crunchy mixture on your baking pan, and then top it with candy corn and sprinkles. Let cool completely and break into pieces. Store in an airtight container.
The recipe gives a warning that this candy bark is only for those with an incredibly large sweet tooth. To tone down the sugar-factor, try swapping the cookies with graham crackers or even saltine crackers, which will give them an added salty-sweet flavor.
Mother Nature decided to mix it up for Halloween this year, so why not try these recipes and do the same?
Written By: Mary Kate Polanin