28 November 2012

Chugging Along (And A Recipe!)

Sooooo tired.

I worked this evening until 9 pm or so, then I went to the store to get a few more ingredients/packaging supplies for my event this Friday, then I came home, tweaked my recipes and got to baking!  I made some vegan peppermint rice crispy treats and some almond bark and it is now 2 am.  I am not going to yoga tomorrow.  Or today, rather : /

I decided to include a recipe for the vegan and gluten-free rice crispy treats I made.  I'm very pleased with how they turned out.  A lot of the recipes I came across online either had nut butter for a binding ingredient (which I'm sure would taste amazing but it is not what I was going for), vegan marshmallows (again, amazing, I'm sure, but I didn't want to use them for this particular recipe) and corn syrup, which I try to avoid.  I came up with a recipe that turned out great and has a lot of room for variations, which I'll note.

Vegan and Gluten-Free Mint Chocolate Krispies
-  1/2 c. brown rice syrup (or agave nectar, which might make it a little sweeter so adjust accordingly)
-  1/4 c. +  2 T. cane sugar
-  1/2 T. Earth Balance
-  3 heaping T. cocoa powder
-  Heaping 1/4 tsp. pure vanilla extract
-  Scant 1/4 tsp pure peppermint extract
-  1/8 tsp. salt
-  3 c. puffed rice cereal (My favorite brand is Erewhon and for this recipe I used their Gluten-Free Crispy Brown Rice Cereal)
-  4 oz. chocolate, for drizzling (I used Equal Exchange Mint Chocolate--all mint chocolate bars are NOT created equal and I find this bar to be excellent!)
-  3-4 crushed peppermint candies or candy canes (you can use more/less depending on how peppermint-y you want your crispy treats)
-  Mini chocolate chips, for sprinkling on top (optional...kind of ;)

1.  Combine agave nectar and cane sugar on stove over medium heat.  Once sugar is dissolved and mixture is boiling, add Earth Balance.  Once Earth Balance is melted, stir in cocoa powder until fully incorporated.  Remove from heat and add extracts and salt.  Mix in rice cereal and press into prepared dish.
2.  Allow squares to firm up in the refrigerator or freezer for at least 30 minutes.
3.  Drizzle with melted chocolate, crushed peppermint candies and mini chocolate chips.

- Omit cocoa powder and peppermint extract and increase vanilla extract to 1/2 tsp. for original rice crispy treats.

-  Add 1/2 c. peanut butter and omit peppermint extract for chocolate-peanut butter rice crispy treats.  You may also choose to eliminate the cocoa powder for just plain, peanut butter rice crispy treats.  Additionally, you could use almond, cashew, hazelnut or another nut butter for variation!
-  Use 1/3 c. tightly packed brown sugar, 1 T. Earth Balance and a scant 1/2 tsp. salt for salted caramel-y type crispy treats ;)

Lastly, I made roasted almond chocolate bark, which turned out beautifully!  It was my first time making bark and it is DEFINITELY something I will make again.  Even though this particular almond bark was pretty simple, I think I'd like to experiment with other flavor combinations like dried cherries and pistachios or even a crystallized ginger and orange peel combo!

After the bark set, I broke it into imperfect, uneven pieces and placed the pieces in adorable snowman and penguin bags, which I'll take pictures of later to post!

I started my granola bombs tonight too...

Going to bed now.


  1. Keep up the great work! I'm so excited for you, and a little jealous at the same time ;) This sounds like such a fun event, and I'm sure everyone is going to love the vegan treats! My salon is hosting a similar event but I heard about it too late and all of the tables were filled. Boo!

    Anyway, what a smart idea to use brown rice syrup! I haven't used it in a long time and those treats look beautiful! I LOVE making bark for the holidays, it's so easy, looks pretty and you can make a ton of it at a time! I make it every year ;)

    Good luck with the rest of the baking and get some rest!

  2. Thanks, Sarah! What is it that you do for work, exactly? I'm not trying to be nosy...just curious! I know it pertains to photography but what is it that you do from day to day?

    Thanks for your compliments, too! Yes, I'm very happy with how the treats turned out and that is a GREAT suggestion to make bark as Christmas gifts! It'll be more thoughtful, tastier and less expensive than something I'd buy anyway! I know I appreciate homemade gifts more than store bought so I'm sure others would feel the same way too ;)

    Have a nice weekend!

    1. Haha it's not nosy at all! I work for a wedding photography studio. Tuesday-Saturday I'm in the studio. I do photo editing, and other general office work. Nothing exciting. On Sundays (I used to do it all weekend but he just changed my schedule) I assist on weddings if I'm needed. Tomorrow is my last wedding of the season so I'll have a full 2 day weekend (Sunday-Monday) and I can't wait!

      Yeah I plan on baking for the majority of my gifts this year. I agree with you, I think home made gifts are more special :)

      Thanks you too!

  3. OOh! Now I know! Your work sounds really interesting! Do you like meeting all the newlyweds?? I'm sure your work environment is a very happy one, what with all the "new love" in the air, lol!

    What types of things are you planning on baking this year??? I'm totally going to make bark but I'm having a hard time deciding what else to make!