Baking Up Sweet Memories

Last week I spent an afternoon baking with my mum. No, the fire department was not summoned. This time. And to set the record straight, the time I set my kitchen on fire, I wasn’t baking. I was stir frying.

Anyway, I had expert help this time. My mum knows her way around a mixing bowl. But, if you ever have the chance to cook in my mother’s kitchen, do NOT put food directly on the counter. She’s rather protective of her granite. When I tried to cut on the counter she said (shouted) “No cutting on the granite! And chocolate stains!!”

After I carefully backed away from the counter top and hid the knives I said, “I thought that was the benefit of granite–that you could do stuff on it. Like roll pastry.”

“Oh Lisa,” she answered. “I don’t roll pastry on my granite. Also, I don’t bake pies, I buy them.”

So my mother may not be the “pie baking” kind of grandma, but she makes amazing cookies and bakes the best muffins and loafs around. And she makes me laugh, even when she’s scolding me about her rather eclectic and ample house rules.

Last week Kraft Canada sent us this basket of goodies and we got to work making some sweet treats. Our plan: bake, split the goodies, package up all pretty-like and gift to our friends!


So we melted and mixed our way through the day. Frankly, how much my mum and I are alike both delights and terrifies me. Within minutes I had melted chocolate over about 75% of my arms and my mum was sporting a chocolate moustache (on purpose to make me laugh…she won’t let me post the photo.) Her circa 1978 oven mitts were also covered in melted dark chocolate. I suggested she try silicone mitts that easily wipe clean. Turns out she has a brand new pair that she refuses to use because she’s “saving them.” Not unlike the over fifty brand new tea towels she’s saving for some unknown occasion. Oh my god, my mother is a kitchen supply hoarder. Even worse, I’m a “saver” too. 
We baked and chatted and shooed my dad out of the kitchen more than once. And at the end, we had some rather beautiful results. I wish I could say we were able to gift these as planned but by the time we had sampled and shared with the family, there wasn’t much left. It’s okay though, the fun we had and the time spent together, was the perfect gift for us. 
Salted Caramels
A delicious sweet and salty holiday treat.
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  1. 1 package (269g) Kraft Caramels
  2. 5 squares Baker's Premium 70% Cacao Dark Chocolate, melted
  3. 1 Tbsp. sea salt
  1. Insert toothpick into 1 caramel; dip in chocolate.
  2. Shake gently to remove excess chocolate.
  3. Place on waxed-paper covered baking sheet.
  4. Remove toothpick and sprinkle immediately with salt.
  5. Let stand until chocolate is firm.
  1. Use small spatula to easily slide the dipped caramels into gift packages.
  2. To firm chocolate more quickly, refrigerate until firm.
Forever In Mom Genes
Chocolate, Caramel and Oatmeal Bars
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  1. 24 Kraft Caramels
  2. 1.2 cup canned evaporated milk
  3. 1 cup flour
  4. 1 cup quick-cooking oats
  5. 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  6. 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  7. 1/4 tsp. salt
  8. 3/4 cup cold butter, cut up
  9. 1 cup Baker's semi-sweet chocolate chips
  10. 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  1. Heat oven to 350F.
  2. Line 9-inch square pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over the sides.
  3. Spray with cooking spray.
  4. Cook caramels and milk in saucepan on low heat 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently until caramels are completely melted and sauce is well blended.
  5. Remove from heat.
  6. Mix dry ingredients and cut in butter to form crumbly mixture.
  7. Press half of the mixture into prepared pan.
  8. Bake 10 minutes.
  9. Top with chocolate chips and nuts and drizzle with caramel sauce.
  10. Top with remaining half of crumb mixture.
  11. Bake 20-25 minutes more or until golden brown.
  12. Cool completely.
  13. Use foil "handles" to lift from dessert from pan before cutting into bars.
  1. Substitute walnuts for the pecans.
Forever In Mom Genes
Rocky Ridge Bark
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  1. 2 pkgs (8 squares each) Baker's semi sweet chocolate, melted
  2. 1/2 cup chopped dry-roasted peanuts
  3. 4 Oreo cookies, coarsely chopped
  4. 1/2 cup Jet-Puffed mini marshmallows
  1. Combine ingredients.
  2. Spread onto parchment paper or waxed paper covered baking sheet.
  3. Refrigerate 1 hour or until firm.
  4. Break into 20-ish pieces.
  1. S'more Bark - prepare as directed, substituting 1/2 cup chopped graham graham crackers for the peanuts and chopped cookies.
  2. For a fun gift idea, fill a mug with bark and wrap in cellophane and tie with a ribbon.
  3. Store in a tightly covered container at room temperature.
Forever In Mom Genes

For more holiday dessert inspiration and recipes visit 

Disclaimer: This post was not sponsored by Kraft, but I did receive the ingredients required to make these recipes. 


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