Welcome to Foodie Holidaze, a series on holiday snacks your Republican family will recognize and your foodie friends will still approve of.
Many holiday dessert recipes are like drugs; they’re addictive and you can never get enough of them. Be honest. You have more than once stood next to the buffet table so you could keep sneaking a certain kind of cookie or candy.
When it comes to holiday snacks, my weak point is muddy buddies. I had never made this holiday essential until earlier this week, not because it involves using a packaged cereal, but because I knew it would inevitably show up at a certain holiday party every December. There’s no need to eat choclatey chex mix more than once every 12 months; it’s like holiday crack, better to avoid it all the other days of the year. Which means not making it yourself.
But then came the challenge of revamping it, and in my world, if something can combine chocolate, cardamom and sea salt, then it’s probably worth eating. And my convictions were confirmed: I am addicted to this stuff.
This version is vegan and gluten free of course, but don’t worry, your family will never notice the difference.
Vegan and Gluten Free Muddy Buddies with Cardamom and Sea Salt
4.5 cups Rice Chex
4.5 cups Corn Chex
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (if you’re making this for vegans, make sure they’re vegan certified)
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 teaspoons cardamom
3-4 teaspoons coarse sea salt
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar (if you’re trying to cut down on sugar, you can use less powdered sugar – these are just as good without!)
In a large bowl, combine the cereals.
Melt the chocolate chips, peanut butter, and coconut oil either by putting them in a microwavable bowl and nuking them for about 30 seconds, or with the double boiler method. Don’t worry, I don’t own a double boiler either. You accomplish this fancy sounding thing by filling a large pot with water and placing a smaller heat-proof bowl in the water (metal works best). Heat the water while constantly stirring the mixture until it is fully melted.
Stir in vanilla and cardamom into the melted concoction. Slowly pour mixture over the cereal and stir until cereal is evenly coated.
Spread coated cereal out on a piece of wax paper and sprinkle sea salt over it. Place cereal in a large food-storage plastic bag. Add powdered sugar, seal and shake until cereal is fully coated.
Note: If you want a milder salt taste, use a flakier sea salt.
Send us your favorite holiday guilty snack pleasure – we love green bean casserole too, don’t worry – and we’ll pick one to revamp, foodie style. The winning dish will win a $70 gift certificate from our good friends at Horny Toad and a handmade Laura Cooke Ceramics coffee mug (with an animal print of your choice). Email your suggestions to info[at]foodieunderground[dot]com or use#foodieholidaze on Twitter.