Monday, December 13, 2010

Old Fashioned Ting-a-Lings, The Easiest Christmas Candy Ever!

Old Fashioned Ting-a-Lings, made with melted chocolate and cereal, are a fantastic addition to your holiday sweets tray, as stocking stuffers, and as party favors to hand out to those holiday guests.

Old Fashioned Ting-a-Lings

These little Ting-a-Ling candies have been around as long as I have and they have always been a holiday favorite - best yet. They truly have to be the easiest candy ever!

A lot of folks make these using chow mein noodles these days, but they originally started off back in the 1950s made with Wheaties cereal, and later, a wider variety of cereals. With the crunchy noodles, they are called Haystacks, and I've included that variety in the notes with the recipe.

It's a simple matter of melting some chocolate chips, or if you prefer, almond bark - either vanilla or chocolate - and then stirring in your favorite cereal and any add-ins you like. The Ting a Lings pictured above were made using things I happened to have on hand in my pantry and freezer - vanilla almond bark, plain corn flakes, dried cranberries, sliced almonds and the tail end of a bag of flaked coconut. Even The Cajun loved them, and you can imagine the variety you can come up with.

Then it's just a matter of blending it all together and dropping it in dollops either onto a piece of parchment or waxed paper, or into petite candy cups that are temporarily housed in a mini muffin pan - just for the purpose of balancing them and keeping them upright. Now, how easy is that?

Once you fill the cups, let them set, or stick them in the fridge to hasten firming them up. After they harden, you can put them into gift bags, or boxes, or pick up some inexpensive cellophane bags or holiday containers that are sold at the dollar store or at Walmart in the craft section this time of year. Stuff a few Ting-a-Lings in and embellish with a ribbon, and you've got a nice gift for just about anybody.  Great as an added munchie for a movie basket, or to stuff into an oversized coffee mug for those teachers or co-workers.

Ting-a-Lings are also a fantastic addition to your own holiday sweets tray, as stocking stuffers, and as party favors to hand out to those holiday guests. 

How do you Ting-a-Ling?

Recipe: Old Fashioned Ting-a-Lings

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 5 min |Cook time: 15 min | Yield: Many
The amounts given are fairly relative - use more or less or each. If you choose an add-in, or a combination of add-ins, use a lesser amount of cereal. Just stir until it looks right.

  • 1 (11.5/12-ounce) bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips, or milk chocolate, (or can substitute white or chocolate almond bark)
  • 4 cups of crunchy dry cereal - Cheerios, Chex, Wheaties, Kix, Rice Krispies, Corn Flakes, or choose your favorite cereal (can also substitute chow mein noodles)
  • Optional add-ins: Add about 1/2 cup of chopped pecans, chopped cocktail peanuts, chopped cashews, chopped macadamia nuts, toasted chopped or sliced almonds, raisins, chopped dried fruit or dried berries or cranberries, flaked coconut, mini marshmallows or any combination

Melt chocolate in the top of a double boiler, or in the microwave on high (heat 30 seconds, stir, heat and stir in 15 second intervals until melted - don't burn it!). Let cool slightly, then gently stir in the cereal and any add-ins desired, until well combined.

Immediately drop by tablespoons onto waxed or parchment paper, or into mini candy cups. If you put the cups into a mini muffin tin, it helps to keep them balanced and upright. Let set for several hours before packaging - can also speed up by refrigerating.

Cook's Note: The almond bark to me is very sweet, so take that into consideration with your add-ins.

Variation: Can also use a combination of chocolate chips with butterscotch or other flavored chips.

Haystacks: 1 cup butterscotch chips, 1/2 cup peanut butter, 1/2 cup peanuts with 2 cups chow mein noodles. Melt butterscotch chips in the microwave, stir in remaining ingredients and drop dollops onto parchment or waxed paper.


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©Deep South Dish
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Posted by on December 13, 2010
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