When I was a little girl, by this date I had spent hours in the kitchen baking every Christmas treat imaginable. Our kitchen counters were lined with glass jars full of decadent treats for us to nibble and to give to anyone who dropped by. And, in a small town, that was often a lot! Things are a little different in my kitchen these days, but I still like to do a few festive treats. So, this morning I whipped up a batch of a good ole' Southern favorite. . . Buckeyes. I try to make myself feel better about them by telling myself that since peanut butter is the main ingredient, they are full of healthy protein! I easily overlook the mounds confectioners sugar that rounds out the recipe! It's all in moderation these days! During this time of year, I also always say, MAINTAIN AND NOT GAIN, is the main goal!
1 1/2 Cup Peanut Butter 1 Cup Butter, softened
1/2 tsp vanilla extract 6 Cups confectioners' sugar
4 Cups semisweet chocolate
1. In a large bowl mix together the peanut butter, butter, vanilla and confectioners' sugar. The dough will look dry. Roll into 1 inch balls and place on a wax paper-lined cooike sheet.
2. Press a toothpick into the top of each ball (to be used as a handle for dipping) and chill in freezer for 30 minutes.
3. Melt chocolate chips in a double boiler and stir frequently until smooth.
4. Dip frozen peanut butter balls in chocolate. Leave a small portion of peanut butter showing at the top to make them look like Buckeyes. Put back in the refrigerator until time to serve.
(I just peeked into my fridge and see that a little elf has been working on ours!)
I know there are a lot of diligent bakers out there who could tweak this recipe and make it a lot cleaner and healthier. Please do!! And share!!
Hope you also get the chance to bake some of your favorite treats this Season!
What's your favorite?
Rolled and ready to freeze for 30 minutes
Dipped in melted chocolate and then chill until set. Try to eat just one!
The BIG Blow Out Day of Feasting is about to be upon us! And while I love that we have a Holiday just for offering Thanks (and I love all of you who refuse to bypass Thanksgiving for the flashier Holiday that comes next) I just cannot let the day come and go without giving you a least a little education on how to tackle the day. I am NOT about to tell you to skip the good, fattening sides or politely decline the homemade pie WITH either ice cream or whipped cream at the end, and I am one of the biggest eaters out there. I am often known to eat more than the husband, but we can't just say "ignorance is bliss" and wonder how in the world we put on 5 lbs over night!
So while the typical Thanksgiving meal taker consumes 2000 - 30000 calories on this one day . . . yes, that's at least twice as much as a normal caloric day should be. . . there are a few things to know in preparation for the big day, so here goes. . .
Here is a list of the damage you will likely do and some ways to undo the damage!
So, Go Ahead, Enjoy Your Holiday Treats
* Note: The calories burned are estimates based on a 150-pound woman. What you burn depends on your height, weight, and how vigorously you work out.
1. A SLICE OF PECAN PIE - 500 CALORIES
I make my Grandmother's recipe as it is my husband's favorite and it is not complete without the scoop of real whipped cream on the side. . . My tip . . . save the pie for later. I eat it as my dinner that night!
Burn it off this way: Run, run and run some more!! Or, walk 5 miles to get it off!
2. Sweet Potates - 200 Calories
My sweet potatoes are not quite as healthy as the normal sweet potatoes I eat, mine have brown sugar and pecans (but no marshmellows!) so I likely eat more that 200 calories if I have seconds!
Burn it off this way: Take an afternoon holiday hike or at least a walk with some good hills! A 45 minute walk with hills can burn 250 calories or add some stairs, climbing stairs for 5 minutes burns 50 calories. So there, those sweet potatoes never happened!
3. Stuffing, or dressing, as we call is down South - 105 Calories
I have to confess, this is one of my least favorite sides, so sometimes I just pass it by. Why waste the calories if you don't love it? But, for those of you who love your dressing. . .
Burn if off this way: 30 minutes on the stair stepper at the gym, or WRAP presents for one hour and burn 120 calories! (That assumes you have been really early on the next Holiday preparations)
4. A Cup of Eggnog - 400 CALORIES
I have to confess this is one of my favorites, but I have to have the lightened version. I just can't rationalize this many calories on a beverage! Plus, I don't start downing these until the calendar flips to December
Burn it off this way: If you live where it's available, ice skating is the perfect calorie burner! If not, I'm saying you need a good spin class to torch this many calories!
4. Honey-Roasted Ham - 3.5 oz. 122 Calories
This is another item, like turkey itself, I am known to pass on. I can eat ham any time! So, I tend to save it for a sandwich the day after the big feast.
Burn it off this way: Jog for an hour and burn about 500 calories, that's perfect for Thanksgiving and Christmas day! Get it in early, before you start indulging and you will be free to enjoy!
5. Hot Chocolate - 150 CALORIES
This is a timeless treat that is good on any chilly afternoon or evening.
Burn it off this way: Get outside and play basketball or tag football! You'll burn it off without even thinking about it!
6. Cranberry Sauce - 1/4 cup 100 Calories
This is a yummy healthy side. No guilt here.
Burn it off this way: Take a walk around the block. Your tight pants will thank you!
7. Two Sugar Cookies - 200 CALORIES
I have to confess that cookies are my favorite, and my downfall.
Burn it off this way: 20 minutes on the elliptical machine at a good resistance will do the trick.
8. Broccoli Casserole - 1/2 Cup 130 CALORIES
This is one of my very favorite sides! I can't have a Thanksgiving meal without it and I can't not have 2 helpings!
Burn it off this way: Some type of cardio; jumping rope, stationary bike, elliptical trainer, running
9. Pumpkin Pie - 250 CALORIES
Burn it off this way: GO SHOPPING! Park farther away in the parking lot and carry lots of bags!
There you have it. Now, you can't say that you had NO idea you were eating so many calories! That being said, ENJOY but be picky! Don't eat it if you don't love it!
But mostly be THANKFUL! You have wonderful food on the table and you have this amazing body that can get out and move around after enjoying it!