The image of spheres of sweetness just evoke Christmas time to me.
When I was a child, we occasionally made popcorn balls, huge buttery toffee covered spheres of corn, breaking apart into white sticky crumbles on first bite.
Our family dogs always loved when we made them since we rarely managed to eat them without scattering the kernels everywhere.
I still love the idea of those huge things, just not the mess.
So when I started to think about the upcoming Bellingham Gluten Intolerance cookie exchange, I wanted to evoke the idea of a popcorn ball without the need for it being so big.
I wanted to make it without the corn as well since there are a few folks in the group with a corn reaction.
My eyes fell on a box of Erewhon Crispy Brown rice cereal, swag I brought home from the International Food Bloggers Conference in Santa Monica and I realized that I had solved both problems at once.
The 100% organic cereal has just 3 ingredients, organic brown rice , organic brown rice syrup and sea salt.
The size of the rice grains would bring the dimensions in line with my goal of being bite sized.
Onto the next problem.
I wanted to make the toffee candy part without the corn syrup of my youth.
Why? Simply because the corn syrup of my youth no longer exists. It is now a genetically modified highly processed sweetener with no redeeming qualities. So unless you find organic corn syrup, I would suggest you just pass it by.
What do I use instead? Honey has so many of the properties of corn syrup, with the added benefits of some minerals and that special flavor that evokes wildflowers or oranges.
Especially if you use just a bit in a recipe, I find you can simply replace the corn syrup with honey.
Like in this easy recipe.
- 1/4 cup organic light brown sugar- packed
- 2 tablespoons local honey
- 1 tablespoon organic butter
- 3 cups of Erewhon Crispy Brown Rice Cereal
- Combine the sugar, honey and butter in a large pot over medium heat.
- Let the mixture melt and heat till there are small bubbles forming.
- Continue to cook till the mixture starts to brown.
- Remove from the heat.
- Immediately add the Crispy Rice Cereal.
- Stir till each grain is coated in the toffee mixture.
- Let the pot cool for 1-2 minutes till you can handle the mixture.
- Form the Toffee coated Crisp rice balls into bite sized balls.
- Place each one on a cookie sheet to finish cooling.
- Wrap in a twist of plastic wrap or waxed paper.
- Tie the ends of each ball with ribbon if you like.
- Makes 16
- Quick notes
- These are the perfect thing to stir together for a gathering.
- If you desire a different taste treat, use 1/3 cup maple syrup instead of the brown sugar. Bonus it makes them refined sugar free!
- I like to add a 1/4 cup of coconut, chopped nuts or chocolate chips occasionally. Feel free to mix in your favorite