Friday, May 1, 2009

Something Different

I kept getting hints from the family that I haven’t made a favorite treat in a while. I finally made a batch last week when my son got home from sixth grade camp.

We call them Raisin Spicy Dice. I invented them when I entered a recipe contest on a whim – something I’ve never done before or since. No, they didn’t win, but they won over my raisin-loving son. Even my daughter likes them, and she’ll go out of her way to avoid a raisin.

The challenge was to come up with a recipe for raisins using no more than six ingredients. I used an unlikely combination of raisins, chocolate, and chili peppers. They taste like a spicy Tootsie Roll. If your curiosity gets the better of you, here’s the recipe:

1 cup raisins
2 T unsweetened cocoa powder
2 T light corn syrup
2 ¾ cup confectioner’s sugar
½ tsp. ground cayenne pepper

Combine raisins, cocoa powder and corn syrup in food processor until mixture forms a soft paste. Gradually add 2 ½ cups of confectioner’s sugar and process until combined.
Transfer to clean surface and knead until sugar is completely incorporated and a soft dough is formed.
In a shallow dish, mix together remaining ¼ cup sugar and cayenne pepper. Shape dough into 1 inch balls. Roll each ball in spiced sugar, then pinch sides to form into cubes.

Also, speaking of contests, I found another one to distract me from anything I should be doing. Stories For Children is having a Mother’s Day writing contest on their blog, Families Matter. The deadline to enter is May 4, so there’s still time to enter. You can read about it here.

Is there any type of contest you just can't resist?


Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I have NEVER heard of these before!

Suzie said...

Ohhh they sound so good

Kelly said...

You made up your own recipe?! Impressive!

Ara Burklund said...

I'm going to have to try making these--they look delicious!

But contests? I like entering writing contests for the feedback they come with.

adrienne said...

Green Girl - I remember some kind of fruity candy from my childhood - maybe that's what inspired me...

Suzie - They are!

Kelly - It's like making marzipan, but with raisins instead of almond paste.

Ara - Nice to hear from you!
They are actually yummier that I expected - even better the next day when the spice soaks in.

I've also learned a lot from writing contests.

Bish Denham said...

Oh boy! Another excuse to get my hands in the chocolate!

Rena said...

Sounds like something I'd like. Thanks for sharing your recipe!

Angela said...

I will have to leave the cooking contests to my hubby - he's a better chef.

I always like those contests at conferences...guess how many marbles are in the container or whatever. I know it is just a ploy to get cards..but I guess anyway.

LW said...

Ground cayenne pepper that is a surprise..


Anne Spollen said...

They look great! I might try to make these.

And yes, I used to be addicted to first page contests -- send in the first page of your completed novel, or the first five pages -- I used to love those. Then I won and had to admit to the literary agent that contacted me that I didn't actually have a whole novel -- just those pages. It cured me.

Mary Witzl said...

What a great ıdea, using cayenne pepper and raisins together! I do something similar with dried fruit, but I soak them in rum and honey first, mix them with wheat germ, press them into bars, then roll them in cinammon. I figure a little rum won't hurt the kids too much, though you have to keep an eye on them afterwards...

I can't resist haiku contests. And I had Anne's experience with first chapters of a novel; thank GOD I didn't get the first prize, but the daily terror of thinking I might pretty much cured me.

adrienne said...

Bish - No excuse needed to play with chocolate!

Rena - I know you like spicy food :)

Angela - I think I won a bowlful of Tootsie Rolls that way once!

Louise - I think red pepper goes with almost anything...

Anne - That's hilarious! That first page is challenging, but then again if it's just the one, even I might be able to get that right... :-D

Mary - I love haiku, too. And those fruit bars sound yummy!