Hye Thyme Cafe: Peppermint Bark Candy Canes AND an Epic Fail ... or was it? Muahaha!

Welcome to the Hy
e Thyme Cafe. Although not all of my recipes are Armenian, the name is a little nod to my Armenian grandmother who is no longer with us. The Hye refers to all things related to her homeland, and she represents all things food-related to me, so the two just seemed to go together. I can't even claim that my Armenian recipes are truly Armenian, since Greece, Turkey, Armenia, Lebanon, Syria, and even Egypt share so many foods that they've all sort of morphed into one over thousands of years.

Whether you like to cook, bake, have never done either, or just like to play with your food...come on in and join me! :)

Monday, December 24, 2012

Peppermint Bark Candy Canes AND an Epic Fail ... or was it? Muahaha!

Peppermint Bark Candy Canes : Hye Thyme Cafe

The big thing I've been seeing in Christmas catalogs over the past few years has been snowflake shaped peppermint bark. With that in mind, I turned my attention to a silicon candy cane ice cube mold I picked up at The Christmas Tree Shops at some point (opened by an Armenian by the way). I love that place; you never know what you'll find there. Well, I should say most of them - some are small and crappy, like with Tuesday Morning, while others are huge and awesome.

Peppermint Bark Candy Canes : Hye Thyme Cafe
Peppermint bark is super easy, and I have previously posted one here. For this version, I used a small paintbrush to paint the peppermint infused white chocolate into the stripes of the mold, let that chill while melting some milk chocolate, then topped off the molds with that and a sprinkling of crushed candy cane and tossed it in the fridge to chill/set. They turned out cute and popped out of the mold very easily, so I ended up making a few more batches. I like to sprinkle Christmas candies around a big cookie platter, so I can use these this year instead of purchased candies.

On a recent trip to Kinney's, a Rite Aid/Walgreen's type drug store that has been popping up in our area over the past few years (also a place to find random interesting things for the holidays - stocking stuffers, etc.), I found a display of LorAnn candy oils, so I tried peppermint oil in place of the peppermint extract. Maybe the oil works well for hard candies, but in the chocolate, I actually prefer the extract - it's not as harsh.  

So, what was my Epic Fail??? 

Since the candy canes worked so well, and I was thinking about making up a batch of coffee/cocoa stirrer spoons (never ended up doing that), I remembered another silicon ice cube tray I had and decided to try an "adult" candy.

When I made my first batch of candy canes, I tried adding some Kahlua into the leftover milk chocolate, and it immediately seized up, so to do what I had in mind, I decided to heat the booze before adding the chocolate.

I warmed a bit of DiSaronno Amaretto with a touch of cream, then slowly incorporated white chocolate until melted and smooth. I spooned the white chocolate into my tray and, as with the candy canes, popped it in the fridge to chill while melting some milk chocolate. For the milk chocolate layer, I started by warming a bit of Kahlua with a touch of cream.

See the blue on the bottom? That's the flexible silicon part. The bottoms are round, so once inverted, they would be flat on the bottom with a bubble top. I filled the mold with white chocolate to the top of the blue, then filled them the rest of the way with the milk chocolate.

I know that alcohol doesn't freeze, but I was assuming that mixed with the chocolate, it would be firm enough to pop out of the molds. Not so much! Even after being in the freezer for several hours, it's more the consistency of fudge. What does this mean? That I'll be spooning some boozy fudge out of the freezer with a tasting spoon when I get home after Christmas.  

!!!! ALL FOR ME !!!! 


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