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No Bake, No Cook, St. Patrick's Day treats

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I'm trying to come up with a no bake, no cook sweet St Patrick's Day treat for my Brownie troop's "Snack Badge". We're meeting in a room at the library and have no access to a kitchen there and can't do anything too messy or time consuming. I can prep stuff at home.

I have a few ideas from http://www.foodnetwork.com/holidays-a... and I'm trying to make them "St. Patrick's".

1) Gingerbread Pops Pulse 14 crumbled gingersnaps, 1/2 cup each confectioners’ sugar and cookie butter (speculoos spread), 1/4 cup chopped candied ginger and 1/2 stick room-temperature butter in a food processor. (I'd do all that at hom.) I'd have the girls form into 1 1/2-inch balls. The recipe says to roll in confectioner's sugar, but maybe I could use green colored sugar. Then insert a lollipop stick into each and chill until firm. I'm not crazy about this one because of the potential for the sugar to end up all over the library carpet, plus ginger is more of a Christmas flavor.

2) Unrolled Cannoli Beat 1/4 cup each ricotta, mascarpone and confectioners’ sugar with a mixer until smooth. Spread the mixture onto large waffle cookies and top each with mini chocolate chips, a pinch each of cinnamon and sugar, and some grated orange zest.

I could add some green food coloring, use green and white M&Ms instead of the chips, and nix the cinnamon, sugar and orange zest.

3) Cheesecake Bites Beat 4 ounces room-temperature cream cheese, 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, and 1 tablespoon each grated lemon zest and lemon juice with a mixer until smooth. Pipe onto almond biscuits, then top each with about 1/2 teaspoon raspberry preserves.

Again, I'd use green food coloring, and maybe fill a small ziploc bag for each girl. Then I could cut off the tips of the bag and let them have fun piping onto sugar cookies (I think I'd have to avoid almond cookies, too many nut allergies out there these days). I can't think of a green preserve that wouldn't be gross, so maybe top with green and white M&Ms.

Any thoughts, or other ideas for something that might work? Thanks!

EDIT: One more, "potato candy" from http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Irish-Po...

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  1. Is mint jelly "gross"? You could skip the lemon and use marshmallow fluff instead of confectioner's sugar (same carpet issue as other sugar, maybe worse). Maybe melt some white chocolate at home and keep it slightly warm until blending time. There IS kiwi preserves but kinda hard to find. Green food coloring (concentrated kind from craft stores) should be able to turn apple jelly green.

    I don't know if green maraschino cherries still exist, but they would taste better than green candied cherries, which have no flavor at all.

    Dye white sugar green by whirring it in a blender or FP with green food coloring paste or gel. Spread on a sheet pan for a day to let it dry, whir again if there are clumps. Dip green seedless grapes in a mixture of egg white powder and water, roll in colored sugar, freeze. Maybe would work with marshmallows too.

    1 Reply
    1. re: greygarious

      Thanks for this tip on making your own green sugar. I never would have thought of doing this in the food processor!

    2. Rainbow fruit skewers. Bamboo bbq skewers, big marshmallows (for the cloud at one end of the rainbow) strawberries, cantaloupe, mango, green grapes, red grapes and blueberries. Gold-wrapped Rolos on the other end for the treasure.

      1. I also posted this to Facebook and got some fun ideas that might work:

        "Rainbows" made of cut fruit, with a pot of gold (orange-tinted yogurt dip) at the end. I like tacosandbeer's idea of also having gold wrapped Rolos! But we made vegetable pictures for another part of the snack badge so this might be too redundant. OTOH showing the girls that you can make sweet and savory healthy snacks might tie together nicely.

        Lucky Snack Mix from http://hoosierhomemade.com/st-patrick...

        2 cups Lucky Charms cereal
        1 cup Cinnamon Toast Crunch
        1 cup Honey Nut Cheerios
        1 cup Mixed Nuts or Peanuts
        1 cup Green Skittles or M&M’s
        1 cup Pretzels
        Place all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.
        Serve in little Pots of Gold for a fun treat. Or even a small dish.

        I had come across that one when I was researching but we're also making GORP trail mix for another part of this badge, and it's a bit too similar.

        http://thedecoratedcookie.com/2010/03... (picture above is from this site)

        marshmallows
        green edible marker
        green sanding sugar or sprinkles
        cup of water
        lollipop sticks

        For shamrocks, simply draw a shamrock and insert stick, if desired. For glittery marshmallows, insert a lollipop stick into a marshmallow. Quickly submerge the marshmallow in a cup of water. Immediately sprinkle sanding sugar or sprinkles over marshmallow to completely coat. Tap off excess and set aside to dry.

        That could stay fairly mess-free if we had the sugar in a plastic bag over a cookie sheet. I'd probably skip the edible marker and just do the marshmallows dipped in sugar. I'd need to make a rack to let them dry, though.

        Right now I'm going between the green marshmallow pops and the cannoli spread (on top of Girl Scout shortbread cookies, of course!) but I'm still open to ideas!

         
        1. How about something like these veggie rainbow and dip bowls? Here are two versions:

          This one has a recipe for a spinach hummus. http://kidsactivitiesblog.com/10651/s...

          And this one uses guacamole. http://www.parents.com/recipes/holida...

          You could make the dip at home (or buy it) and bring examples of the ingredients and demonstrate how it is made. Cut the veggies at home and let the girls assemble. (include the carrot "coins" and some broccoli "trees")

          Another idea would be using St. Patrick's day cookie cutters to make sandwiches with thin sliced bread, cheese, turkey, ham, etc. with fresh herb mayo so it turns green. Peanut butter and green jelly (dyed apple jelly.) Cream cheese mixed with fresh dill and cucumber slices...http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/sh...

          Some spinach or veggie wraps are green. Here is another sandwich idea:
          http://shine.yahoo.com/food/fun-shamr...

          Melon slices can also be cut with cookie cutters.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Springhaze2

            This snack has to be sweet (it's one of the badge requirements)... we did savory snacks at our last meeting (veggie "pictures" which went over really well!)

            I'm trying to find the balance between "I do it all and they eat it" and "they make it without too much mess". This would be a lot easier if we were able to be in a kitchen but our meeting space doesn't have one and we're not allowed to meet in private homes.

            I love your ideas for fun St Patty's snacks in general, though! The green veggie wraps are a great idea! I forget about those wraps, also available in red (tomato), which I will keep in mind for other colorful food needs.

          2. I love the idea of rainbow fruit skewers with a pot of gold dip.

            You could make ice cream in a bag, which also ties into a science experiment. Add a drop of green food coloring or top the ice cream with green sprinkles or Lucky Charms cereal:

            http://scienceofeverydaylife.discover...

            1. St Paddy's Day Mini Pizzas... (the unrolled cannoli without the 'cannoli' part.) Use the coconut m&ms to decorate - they come in white, green and brown so it's the colour palette you need without having to presort the colours.

              1. "Irish Potatoes" are easy and adorable. My daughter learned to make them at school in Philadelphia:

                http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Irish-Po...

                They are popular here. I never saw them when I was growing up in Brooklyn.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Seeker19104

                  This one from the same recipe group looks good too:
                  http://m.allrecipes.com/recipe/16520/...

                  1. re: Seeker19104

                    My grandmother would make them occasionally when there was a lone left-over boiled potato. When nephew was about 7-8 (he's 30+ now), got call from SIL about how to make them. His b-day is mid-March and she thought they'd be a nice treat for his class... before you couldn't bring in about anything?? She knew recipe was basically just potato and confectioner sugar and rolled in cinnamon. She had cooked potatoes and wanted to know how much powdered sugar she would need. She boile FIVE LBS of potatoes. I said... you're gonna need a bigger BOAT!?! Said probably not enough powdered sugar on supermarket shelf for 5 lbs. ONE lone potato and easily a full lb of sugar makes a LOT of Irish potatoes.

                  2. What about using thin mints to make truffles? Roll in white chocolate and sprinkle green sugar or roll again in green melted candies.

                    Oh, I found a recipe for it:

                    http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2012/0...

                    1. I wanted to thank everyone for your help!

                      I ended up using the unrolled cannoli dip, tinted green, topped with mini chocolate chips and sugar shamrocks I found at a party store. They had it spread on Girl Scout shortbread cookies and every girl liked them!

                      The badge also included a "snack for energy" component, for which I offered an assortment of dried fruits, nuts, pumpkin seeds and M&Ms. The girls really enjoyed making their own snack mixes.

                      There was also a "slurp a snack" component. I would have liked to have done smoothies, but it wouldn't have worked well with our meeting space, so instead I made a cola syrup according to the recipe at http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/06/din... and mixed it with seltzer. I had them smell the syrup and try to guess the components, and then they all tasted it. Most liked it, some asked for seconds, and we talked a lot about how you can make your own syrup at home, however you'd like to make it. (Most agreed they'd use less ginger or use no ginger at all!) You can also mix your drink the way you like it... use a little syrup and a lot of seltzer, or a lot of syrup. Of the 10 girls, only 3 of them had ever tasted Coca Cola (which surprised me) so there were less of a base of reference than I'd expected, but I think they all really enjoyed learning about the idea of making your own fun fizzy drinks.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Chris VR

                        What a fabulous troop leader you are -- those gals are lucky to have someone who takes the time & energy to help them learn.