16 December 2015


and so, a couple days ago i prepared the kitchen and table to begin a bit of Christmas baking. and every year i say that next year i'll just make ONE goodie rather than several or more. i shared this with my mother who quickly said, "no you won't." she knows me well. last night i told that darling man that next year i'll do no baking whatsoever and asked what he thought about that to which he replied "that'd be fine." my brain clicked in (a self slap upside the head) and i knew that wouldn't happen. i've just got to make something!

in all the married lasteryears i remember i've always  made russian tea cakes. i make them well. very well. tender to the point of flaky. it doesn't bode well to overwork dough. and i double dip powdered sugar. this is serious business and if you're enjoying these yUmmies once a year then make it worth enjoying. real butter, pecans, real vanilla, flour, and lots of powdered sugar. then treat yourself to a few dozen (kidding on the amount. kind of) with a strong cup of coffee. ahhh yes - awesome. in 2012 we knew our daughter's address and i made a batch, carefully packaged them, and sent them on their way. no response...but i hope she enjoyed her favorite Christmas goodie. this is a picture of that batch, made with love & prayers.

that man helped me with the first two batches of what i refer to as Christmas Crack. the next morning i made 2 more and have 2 more yet to make. 6 sizable batches in all. i apologize for offending anyone with that term but the overwhelming desire for more of this treat makes the name necessary. and there's no 12 step program. you want the recipe? this one is from the wife of the owner of the antique/vintage/upcycle shop at which i work. so. so. so. addicting. 

{picture found on google... plain}

Christmas Crack (aka Japanese Brittle)

* 400 degree oven
* line a cookie sheet with non-stick aluminum foil. the dull side is the side to use.. OR you can simply spray regular foil with Pam.
* cover foil with a layer of saltine crackers, edge to edge
* in a sauce pan, melt 2 cubes of butter (for the love of everything holy please don't use margarine!) and 1 cup of white sugar (NOT brown!). bring this mixture to a boil and cook for 3 minutes stirring constantly.
* pour the hot mixture over the crackers and spread from edge to edge, covering the surface. now bake it for 8 minutes.
* remove from the oven and sprinkle with semi-sweet chocolate chips (1.5 cups). put back in oven for 3 minutes to soften the chocolate. remove and spread chocolate over the entire surface of crackers. 
* sprinkle with nuts or crushed pretzles. (1 cup)
* place in the freezer for 30 minutes
* pull the foil off the back of the candy and break into bite size pieces
* i put the pieces in gallon size freezer bags and back into the freezer

option ::: use orange cranberries and white chocolate chips instead of semi-sweet, etc. i'd increase the white chocolate to 2 full cups rather than 1.5 ... personal preference. 

and i've made a couple batches of gingerbread. i lost my recipe used for 22+ lasteryears. it is simply the best. but for whatever reason i obviously don't recall, the recipe has been removed from the cookbook and is nowhere to be found! primal cry. you'd think that after 22+ lasteryears i'd know the recipe by heart, but it is not to be so. i found the book on amazon, bought it for one cent plus shipping. waiting on pins and needles for it to arrive but in the meantime i'm using another recipe which is substandard in comparison .. in my opinion. once i receive the book i'll make a copy of the recipe then gift the book in a blog giveaway. so keep your eye open. my original cookbook is dog-eared, marked up, coffee stained, food stained, with notes in the margins, and every other good thing that declares my love for particular recipes. you have cookbooks like that? 

so this year i'm making 3 goodies. three. next year? we'll see. 

***** i lied. i just made a 4th. :/ *****
***** oh dear. forget 3. *****
***** i'm at 5 .. and counting *****


  1. Oh my... I was going to the grocery store to pick up a few items, but had to run for a paper and pen. Okay, I have the ingredients list now and will have to make this for sure. Would love the recipe for the tea tea cakes!

    1. will do, chickie. (russian tea cakes)

  2. I always make Russian Tea Cakes also! My grandma gave me the recipe many, many years ago. Yes to real butter and vanilla!

    We've been making your Christmas Crack for years having gotten the recipe from friends who called it "Wicked Good Cookies." Whatever name it goes by it is truly amazing!

    I've never made gingerbread, can you believe it?


    1. i don't make gingerbread cookies .. only gingerbread (loaf).
      i dearly love it with some fresh whipped cream with a hint of lemon.

  3. Yum, yum, yum! Gonna make the Chocolate Crack tomorrow for a Bible study group! Thanks for the encouragement. Blessings . . .

    1. praying for you - you'll need it to limit your goodie snacking. :)

  4. Sherry, Merry Christmas!!! All looks delicious. The goodies take the show. You are ahead of me. I figure maybe I'll get some fudge made this week-end, dip some pretzels and call it gooooood.
    God bless,

    1. oh golly .. i forgot all about dipped pretzles!

  5. You sound just like me! Every year I make a ridiculous amount of goodies and every year I vow not to.

  6. Russian Tea Cookies are being made at this very moment! :)

    1. my russian tea cake dough is in the fridge waiting patiently for tomorrow morning. :) need to make 2 more batches as well.

  7. For years I made a cookie that seems to be the same as your Russian tea cakes. My mother made them, too. We called them Pecan Sandies. A lovely cookie that we baked only at Christmas time.

  8. Oh, Jess made these powdered sugar cookies too this Christmas. They are so yummy. We call them Russian Tea Cookies, but is there another name for them? How wonderful that you made gingerbread....another favorite of mine.

    I am enjoying reading your posts so much. They are short and sweet and filled with simplicity. Just my kind of thing.


    1. those yUmmies are known by a number of names, most known would be Russian Tea Cakes (or Cookies), and Mexican Wedding Cakes. they're certainly delish. while my mother visited over Christmas i made her a batch to take home .. she lives in southern california.


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