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Celebrate National Candy Month: Here are sweet treats to make at home

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By Emily Chavez and Annika Tomlin

June is National Candy Month, which means we shouldn’t feel guilty about consuming any chocolate, gum, pastries or mints. According to National Confectioner’s Association, the holiday celebrates the value candy adds to our lives. Check out these recipes and satisfy your sweet tooth.

Pineapple Coconut Truffles

Active time: 15 minutes/Total time: 1 hour/Yields: 18 servings

INGREDIENTS

– 1 cup coconut butter (or shredded coconut food processed until it creams into butter)

– 3/4 cup cut pineapple

– 1 tablespoon maple syrup

– 1 cup milk chocolate chips

– 3 tablespoons milk of choice

INSTRUCTIONS

In a food processor, combine the coconut butter, pineapple and maple syrup until creamy.

Using an ice cream scoop or spoon, drop balls of the filling on a lined baking sheet and place them in the freezer to firm up for 10 minutes.

Melt the chocolate chips using the double boiler method and then stir in the milk until completely smooth.

Remove the balls from the freezer and then use two forks to roll them in the melted chocolate quickly and one at a time.

Place truffles into the freezer again to firm up, about 45 minutes.

Chocolate Cookies on sticks

Active time: 10 minutes/Total time: 1 hour/Yields: 12 servings

INGREDIENTS

– 4 1/4 ounces milk chocolate

– 3 ounces white chocolate (optional)

– Oatmeal cookies or other cookies of your choice, 2 ounces crumbled in chunks

– Small soft candies, chocolate chips,

– Sprinkles to decorate

INSTRUCTIONS

Break the milk and white chocolates into pieces and put them in separate, heat-proof bowls. Place each over a pan of simmering water and heat, stirring frequently until melted. (Do not let the bowl touch the water.)

Carefully draw six 2 3/4-inch circles and six 3 1/2- by 2 3/4-inch rectangles on parchment paper. Turn the paper over onto a large baking sheet.

Spoon most of the milk chocolate into the outlines of the paper, reserving one or two spoonfuls for attaching the popsicle sticks.

Using the back of the spoon, carefully spread the chocolate to the edges of the pencil outlines to make a neat shape.

Press the end of the wooden stick into each of the shapes and spoon over a little more melted milk chocolate to cover the stick.

Sprinkle the shapes with crumbled cookies and other decorations while chocolate is still warm.

Chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour until set, then carefully peel away the parchment paper.

Snickerdoodle Cookie Dough Truffles

Active time: 35 minutes/Total time: 2 hours and 35 minutes/Yields: 18 servings

INGREDIENTS

– 1 cup all-purpose flour

– 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

– 1/4 teaspoon baking soda

– 1/4 teaspoon fine salt

– 1/3 packed light brown sugar

– 1/3 cup granulated sugar

– 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

– 2 tablespoons plain yogurt

– 1 cup white chocolate chips

– 1 tablespoon vegetable shortening or coconut oil

INSTRUCTIONS

Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

Sift flour into a medium bowl, then whisk in cinnamon, baking soda and salt.

In a separate large bowl, beat the brown sugar, granulated sugar, butter and yogurt with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until well combined, about 2 minutes.

Add the flour mixture and mix at low speed until well incorporated. (Turn off mixer and use hands to help combine if needed.)

Scoop tablespoonfuls of the dough and roll them into smooth balls. Put them on the prepared baking sheet and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour.

Melt the chocolate chips and shortening in a medium microwave-safe bowl for 30-second increments, stirring in between, until the coating is smooth and thin.

Drop the chilled balls into the coating and roll them around with a fork to fully coat.

Remove each truffle with the fork letting excess coating drip off and return to baking sheets. (If the coating begins to harden, microwave it for a few seconds to warm it up and thin it out.)

Chill the truffles until the coating is completely set, about one hour. (Truffles can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to five days.) CT

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