Treats for your favorite elves!

In every book of the South Pole Santa series there is a special recipe included in the back developed by my talented baking friend, Betsy Chan.

Betsy and I met in a unique way - we were in kitchen's next to each other at the 44th Pillsbury Bake-Off! So. Much. Fun.

In the end, neither one of us got to win the million dollar prize for our concoctions but we did pick up some dear friendships from our special weekend together.

In my case, I feel I was super lucky to have got selected since I really am not much of a baker (my entry was an appetizer) but in Betsy's case, she belonged there. Betsy is a talented baker and generously bakes up a recipe for each South Pole Santa book every year. This year, she made up one of the elves favorite treats!

If you're lucky enough to have elves at your place - or even kids -- they are sure to love this latest recipe. Just look how the elves at my place jumped all over this plate when I went for my camera! Here's the recipe. Enjoy!

Yummy Elf Treats

Recipe created by Betsy Chan

16-20 Treats

4 cups oven toasted “square” corn cereal*

½ cup chopped pecans

6 tablespoons butter

½ cup golden brown sugar

¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

¼ teaspoon kosher or table salt

2 tablespoons light corn syrup

4 cups mini-marshmallows, lightly packed**

1/3 cup mini green and red (or any color) candy-coated chocolate candies

Directions:

In a large bowl, add the cereal and nuts; set aside.

In a medium saucepan, melt together the butter, brown sugar, vanilla, salt and corn syrup. Bring to a boil on medium-high heat, stirring to mix well. Reduce heat to low; add marshmallows and cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring until marshmallows are melted and smooth. Remove from heat, let sit for up to 1 minute.

Pour marshmallow mixture onto the cereal and nuts. Carefully mix together, while sprinkling in the candy, until cereal is evenly coated.

Using a hand wearing a disposable plastic glove (or a hand wearing a quart-sized baggie like a glove), grab a portion of the mixture that’s slightly larger than a golf-ball, and gently squeeze into a ball. Drop onto waxed or parchment paper to cool. Repeat until all the mixture is used. Store in airtight container.

* 4 cups freshly popped popcorn can be substituted (remove all unpopped kernels before mixing)

**The elves counted about 100 mini-marshmallows per cup...but there’s really no need to count them :)

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