My Semi-Famous “Christmas Crack”

The finished product, sitting innocently on the counter top waiting for hungry candy fiends
The finished product, sitting innocently on the counter top waiting for hungry candy fiends

While a majority of my posts will without a doubt involve shooting, this one does not. This is about candy. Yes, candy. The title might’ve made you think of something different, but this is totally legal. Technically it has its roots in shooting, as I started making this candy as a way to supplement funds for more reloading components only to find out my friends and family ate a majority of the profits up. Hands down, this is my most asked for recipe. It’s also the easiest thing in the world to make, yet somehow people screw it up. Don’t ask me how folks do that because you’re going to read the four ingredients and think this is the simplest, most uber-tasty treat you’ve ever eaten.

When my husband Tim and I were dating he brought over a pint of Breyer’s Vanilla Bean Ice Cream and a bag of Ruffles potato chips. If you’ve never tried those together, get to the store now and acquire some! Salty & sweet is a flavor combination that just can’t be beat. If you’ve ever dipped your Wendy’s fries into a Frosty, then you already get why it’s so gooooood. This candy hits all of those craveable salty/sweet notes.

Where it all starts. These ingredients might not look like much but when they're combined, watch out for your fingers!
Where it all starts. These ingredients might not look like much but when they’re combined, watch out for your fingers!

I’m a bit of a “foodie” for lack of a better word. I love to cook, bake, create, and eat. While there those folks who find a great novel exciting, I routinely stock up on cookbooks from all over the globe. I read a lot of other books too, but cookbooks are my grown-up version of a child’s picture book. My husband has been my best taste tester and has tried every recipe I’ve come up with and lived! Especially the sweet ones I make around holidays since I’m a type-1 diabetic, or as Wilford Brimley would say, “I have the diabeetus”. One of Tim’s favorite treats is my Semi-Famous Christmas Crack.

After a couple of minutes in the microwave, the hard blocks of chocolate turn into a gooey mess
After a couple of minutes in the microwave, the hard blocks of chocolate turn into a gooey mess

Christmas Crack is sort of incorrectly named. I just happened to pick the weeks before Christmas to make the first batch. Tim named it, “Trees Down on Rocky Road” as the base came from a recipe for rocky road candy. I took some to work and left it on a desk for all to enjoy. I wanted to see if this was something I could send to family members in a holiday treat box.

First coworker: “Who left this on the desk? It’s delicious!! I mean, this stuff is GOOD!”

Second coworker: “Errmygerd!! Who brought this stuff in? It’s like CRACK! I can’t stop eating it!”

Once it's completely melted, it's new state is similar molten lava
Once it’s completely melted, it’s new state is similar molten lava

First coworker: You are totally right about that! Who brought in this tasty treat from heaven. That is so obviously evil… because I’m on a diet…. Okay, just one more piece.”

Me: “It’s called ‘Trees Down on Rocky Road’ and it’s a new recipe I’m trying out.”

First coworker: “Well that’s a mouthful. It’s obviously laced with crack and deserves a much better name.”

Second coworker: “I vote for ‘Christmas Crack’. So just call it that from now on, okay? And seriously, you should sell this stuff!”

I might have condensed the comments a bit there. The plate of candy that I put out was gone within 30 minutes though, proving that this recipe was a winner. I believe someone said something about wanting to pour milk over the crumbs and eat it for breakfast. I know when I make a big batch the remnants are scraped up off the parchment paper and saved in a ziplock bag to be used as a topping over ice cream or yogurt.

Toss in some broken up pretzel pieces and nuts and you're almost ready to party
Toss in some broken up pretzel pieces and nuts and you’re almost ready to party

We even took some on an elk hunt a couple of years ago. I sent up two one-gallon ziplock bags of the stuff with Tim. By the time I got to the campsite twelve hours later all that was left were crumbs. Yeah. It’s that good. I send packages out to framily (friends who are family) almost every year. Inevitably one of them will call after eating half a container. If you didn’t know before, people can talk surprisingly fast when hopped up on sugar!

Mmmmm... almost done
Mmmmm… almost done

I should probably add that I’ve never measured out ingredients for this recipe. I just eyeball it. Feel free to do that same. So, without further ado, my semi-famous recipe for my Semi-Famous Christmas Crack:

Ingredients: 

  • 2-24oz packages of chocolate Almond Bark
  • 5-7 ounces of mini-marshmallows
  • 12 ounces of mini-pretzels (smashed – not crushed, smashed)
  • 1 lb chopped walnuts, pecans, or cashews (more or less to taste and texture)

Follow the package instructions for melting the chocolate. Once the chocolate is completely melted, fold in the pretzels.

Once the pretzels are combined, fold in the nuts. Then, and only then, fold the marshmallows into the mixture. If you put the marshmallows in too soon they’ll melt. Trust me on this little fact.

IMG_6122So now you’ve got a Good Grief sized glob of chocolate/pretzel/nut/marshmallow tastiness. Don’t eat it yet. Or do. No one is looking and if they are, who are they to judge? Take some parchment paper and line a counter top or a baking sheet if you prefer. This recipe constitutes a double batch for me, because, well, go big or go home. It’s not like it won’t be gobbled up as soon as it’s cooled down enough to harden up.

Spread the chocolatey goodness on the parchment paper to the thickness your little heart desires. Let it cool completely; usually about an hour or so. Once the candy has completely cooled, you can break it into pieces or cut it into pieces or just shove handfuls into your mouth before anyone knows you’ve made some.

I make this stuff year round now, but the name stuck so it will forever be known as Christmas Crack. The first year people requested it round Thanksgiving. The next year the requests started coming in around Halloween. By the third year I started getting requests at Easter. I also make a sister version named “Snow Crack”. It’s similar to Texas Trash, but with my spin on it. Of course, I expect my holiday Christmas Crack sales to plummet now that I’m giving away my not-so-secret secret recipe. On the off chance you’re one of the folks who screw up the recipe or just want to try some of the original Semi-Famous Christmas Crack, I’ll be selling some starting sometime after Thanksgiving for $20 a tin + shipping. Hey, it happens. I won’t judge.

All done. Cut it up and attack! But seriously, watch your fingers. Some folks get a little crazy when candy is around.
All done. Cut it up and attack! But seriously, watch your fingers. Some folks get a little crazy when this candy is around.
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