No-Bake Peanut Butter Crunchy Squares

I made these as a present for the Pie when he came to visit me at Thanksgiving.  The man is a slave to peanut butter, and I like to express my love through food.  We’re a well-matched pair.

The recipe I have calls for 1 cup of crispy rice cereal and 2 cups corn flakes cereal.  I don’t particularly like eating either of those cereals (they get soggy too fast) so I didn’t want to be stuck with piles of cereal when I was finished the recipe.  The solution?  Special K.  A small box containing a mixture of both cereals.  And high in protein too.  In doubling the recipe, I ended up using the entire box (6 cups cereal), which was an added bonus.

For the double recipe you need 1 cup corn syrup.

Corn syrup photographs really well, don’t you think?

2 cups smooth peanut butter.

1/2 cup butter or margarine (go for the real deal).

1 cup packed brown sugar.

And 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.

In a saucepan over low heat, stir together peanut butter, butter, brown sugar, and corn syrup.

Get it all melty and stuff until it’s all smooth and looks like caramel. Caramel made of peanut butter, that is.

Remove it from the heat and mix in the vanilla.

Pour your cereals (2 cups crispy rice, 4 cups corn flakes) in a bowl an mix them (or use my cop-out cheat method of 6 cups Special K Satisfaction).

Pour in the peanut butter goo and mix well.

Press evenly into a sprayed pan (double the recipe makes for a 9×13″ pan).

Chill for 6 hours or until firm.  Flip mixture onto a flat surface and cut into squares.  You might need a spatula to help you ease the squares out of the pan.

Enjoy.  I know the Pie did.

Will keep in an airtight container for ages and ages (separate layers with waxed paper).

Cranberry Sauce

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

For those of you from elsewhere, Canadian Thanksgiving has nothing to do with pilgrims taking advantage of the hospitality of the local folk.  It’s a celebration of the end of the harvest (which, as Canada is further north than the United States, is a mite earlier in the year), and the harvest has been good this year, so let us FEAST.

I’ve been making this simple cranberry sauce (because, really, how can a cranberry sauce be complicated?) since I was tall enough to see the top of the stove.

We’ve got ten people coming to our feast tomorrow and they all like cranberry sauce so I’m going to make quite a bit of it.  If you’re familiar with my general-purpose fruit sauce, the process is very similar.  Or identical.

Take two packages (340g/12oz) fresh cranberries.

Wash them and bung them in a pot.  Add about 3/4 cup of granulated sugar as well as 1/2 cup cranberry juice or water.  You can add more sugar later if it’s not sweet enough for you.

Bring it to a boil, stirring often.

The berries will start to pop and foam.  You can help them along by gently squishing the popped berries against the side of the pot with the back of your spoon.

Then all of a sudden you’ll have a sauce.  You can add a bit of corn starch dissolved in liquid if you like a thick, jelly-like sauce, but we like ours runny so I didn’t bother.

Remove from the heat and allow to cool.  Plop it in a pretty dish (though if it’s going to be there a while, avoid ones that are white in case they stain) and serve it with turkey and all your Thanksgiving goodness.  You can keep it covered in your fridge for ages, so it’s a good thing to make ahead, and make plenty of it for leftovers in the days to come.

Have a great holiday!