Today, I felt like being a kid again! I wanted a taste of those times when I’d play around in the kitchen, experimenting joyfully in the hopes of coming up with something not only fun to make, but yummy. An hour or two would just fly by like nothing, but what an engaging and creative way to spend that time, indeed. Today, I longed for that. I was hungry for it. And I wanted to play around with a simple, sweet treat that most of us are very familiar with, making it a little more natural and much more deliciously decadent.
I do realize that sometimes I can’t leave well enough alone, but that’s just me. I love giving a little twist to something, placing that little stamp that says “Ingrid” on it. I’ve always been a fan of the classic, crisped rice and marshmallow treats, and figured that since there are so many really great, all-natural ingredients out there to use these days, why not make a version with a little more “oomph”, while using those more natural ingredients as substitutes. So I did! And let me tell you, these treats are gooood. “Two-bites” turned into 4, then 6, then 8, then…I think I’m divulging far too much here.
I’ll tell you, I had fun being a kid again today. Even with cereal all over the counter top and on the floor, with chocolate stuck to places it should never be stuck to, and with bits of marshmallow hanging from my bangs, it was all worth it to get good and sticky making tasty treats. And now, the family and I can nibble on something naturally decadent when that snacky monster comes a knockin’ later on, as he always does, without fail.
Taste what’s good and pass it on.
Peanut Buttery, Crisped Rice and Marshmallow Two-Bite Treats dipped in Milk Chocolate
(Makes about 48, two-bite treats)
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
*10-ounce bag all-natural marshmallows (“Dandies” brand gelatin-free, vanilla flavored)
*6 cups Erewhon brand “Rice Twice” all-natural cereal (or other natural, crisped rice cereal)
4 tablespoons all-natural, salted peanut butter
¾ cup milk chocolate chips (or semi-sweet is fine)
¼ cup roasted peanuts, finely chopped
*These ingredients can be found at Whole Foods Market, or your local health food store.
-Place a large, non-stick pot over medium-high heat, and add the butter; once the butter is melted, add the marshmallows and allow to melt, gently stirring with a rubber spatula to blend well; once marshmallows are melted, turn the heat off and add the cereal, and stir gently to combine well; once fairly well combined, add in the peanut butter, and stir once again to incorporate it into the marshmallow/cereal mixture very well; once thoroughly combined, bring the pot with the mixture over to a work surface and begin rolling small, two-bite size balls of the cereal mixture between your palms, compressing a little bit as you roll to help form them (the peanut butter may make them slightly less sticky), and set them onto a large piece of parchment or wax paper; once all of the mixture is rolled into the balls, prepare the milk chocolate to dip them into.
-To melt the chocolate, add the milk chocolate chips to a bowl set over a pot of simmering water (double-boiler method), and stir the chocolate chips with a rubber spatula until they are melted; bring the melted chocolate, along with the pot of hot water, over to your work surface where the cereal balls are; keep the bowl of melted chocolate over the hot water to help it stay fluid and remain melted; begin dipping the top of each ball into the melted milk chocolate, and place onto the parchment or wax paper once again to set slightly; after dipping about 5 balls, sprinkle a little of the finely chopped peanuts over their tops while the chocolate is still warm so that the nuts stick; repeat this with all of the cereal balls, and then allow the chocolate to set slightly, for 2-3 hours in a cool area, if possible.
-Place the Two-Bite Treats onto a serving platter and enjoy.