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Columns February 6, 2018  RSS feed

Cooking Country

Sherry Matney

I have had a hard time deciding what to write this week. Sort of between events. The Super Bowl was yesterday and Valentines is next week. Speaking of the Super Bowl, this has nothing to do with cooking, what did you think of the commercials? Most of them I did not understand nor even know what they were advertising, but I loved the Eli Manning spoof on Dirty Dancing. That took a lot of nerve on Eli’s part because, although he may be a great football player, he certainly is not Patrick Swayze on the dance floor!! Very funny. We got together with some friends and had a blast eating, watching the game and making fun of the commercials. I did not make the real food, and it was amazing, but I did take a couple of fun dishes that you might like. Both are candy or sort of candy and they are fast and easy. Remember before Christmas I told you that I cannot make candy so I rarely give it a try, however, last week we were at a 42 tournament in Madisonville and one woman brought what she called “Texas Crack” and I loved it. The other recipe is really Microwave Peanut Brittle but I changed it by adding pecans, rather than peanuts and dried jalapeno. I bought some Jalapeno Pecan Brittle at Oakwood Outfitters and wanted to try to make it myself. The challenge was getting the jalapeno dry enough to add to the bubbling sugar mixture. I bought a pound of the peppers at Brookshire Brothers and dried them in my dehydrator until they could be broken. Then I put them in the blender and made them into a powder. It worked and the Jalapeno Pecan Brittle was a success, although a little hot for some of my friends.

Texas Crack (this recipe calls for graham crackers although some use saltines)

Graham crackers (enough

to cover a cookie sheet)
1-cup butter
1-cup brown sugar
1 package chocolate chips
(I used milk chocolate)
1 cup chopped pecans

Line a cookie sheet with foil then placed the graham crackers so that they cover the cookie sheet.

In a black skillet melt the butter and add the brown sugar, than cook to 270 degrees. Spread on top of graham crackers and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and cover with the chocolate chips and pecans. Spread as the candy melts. When completely cooled break into random pieces and serve. It tastes like Heath Bars. Yummy!!

Microwave Peanut Brittle

1 cup white sugar
½ cup light corn syrup
1 cup salted peanuts
1-teaspoon butter
1-teaspoon vanilla extract 1-teaspoon baking soda

Butter a cookie sheet. (Heating the cookie sheet make the candy spread easier.) Combine sugar and corn syrup in a 1 quart glass bowl and microwave on high 4 minutes. Stir in peanuts and microwave on high 3 ½ minutes more, then stir in butter and vanilla and microwave for 1-½ minutes. Stir in baking soda until light and foamy. Pour onto cookie sheet and spread thin. Cool completely and break into pieces and serve.

If you want to go to the trouble to make jalapeno candy, I recommend you dry the peppers because if you don’t the candy will be sticky. I know because I tried it not dried. Pecans work great for the brittle whether you use jalapeno or not.

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