Less than 24 hours after Halloween, I was looking at the mound of candy the kids had collected, wondering what I was going to do with it all. Eat it, yes, of course - some of it. Probably much of it. But, even with parent pilfering, our one-piece-after-a-meal rule means some of it could well be sitting in that jar come next Halloween. Don't forget, we have Christmas and Easter coming up, both of which will add to the stash!
I started looking online for recipes that used leftover candy. A quick search came up with plenty of ideas. All were highly unrealistic, for one very obvious reason: All involved leftover chocolate.
Who has leftover chocolate??? Come on, people, I'm talking about the jawbreakers, the hard candies, the taffies and chews that didn't stay soft. What are we meant to do with those???
If you have a cotton candy maker (which we do), you can use the hard candies in those. Another option is
Candied Apple Butter
Yes, apple butter - see, it's nutritious! Kinda. I especially like using the cinnamon candies for this, but basically anything that has a Jolly-Rancher-like consistency will work. To make:
1. Either core and slice enough apples to fill a crock pot, or juice said apples and put the pulp in said crock pot.
2. Add as many candies as you like. As I said, I like doing this with the cinnamon hard candies, but I'll bet green apple would be good, too. Hmm...
3. Do NOT add any other sugar. Did you not read my earlier post about making apple butter? Go back, I'll wait...
4. Okay, from here you just follow the directions in that post, depending on what equipment you have. Did you notice the juicer mention is new? I tried it after writing the original post, and it made the easy apple butter even easier. In fact, you may even have to ADD liquid before you start cooking - water will do (just a half cup or so), or you can use a juice that matches or complements your candy flavor.
Another way to thin out the sugar rush is to make a
Toss those smaller candies in with some peanuts, pretzels, raisins, different types of cereal, etc. Keep a baggie on your desk or take it hiking.
I tend to shy away from the stickier candies, having lost a filling or two in my time. They tend to drift to the bottom of the candy jar anyway, meaning they are rock hard by the time yo uget to them. Soft or hard, though, they make great additions to your favorite recipe for
|This looks more appetizing in real life, I promise.|
|Again, better irl. Really.|
The above had a fruity mix of candies - how many can you identify?
More hard candies? If you aren't adding them to apple butter, toss one in your tea, or make these Stained Glass Cookies from RealSimple.com. I haven't had a chance to try them yet, but they may be making an appearance in our Christmas baskets!
Before trying any of these recipes, though, you might check to see if anyone in your area is collecting them for military care packages or Operation Shoebox. In our neck of the woods, you can take hard candy to First National Bank for Operation Soldier Smiles. Bonus: you can still make the fudge or cookies without the candy in it, and eat that yourself - it's a win-win!
What about you? What are you going to be doing with your leftover candy?