To add to my Christmas fun, I'm participating in Meal Time Magic's 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats Blog Hop. I have so many ideas for baking and freezing goodies this year! Some involve experimenting with new recipes. Some involve trying new flours and milks to create treats for family members with gluten and dairy sensibilities. For the first week, however, I came up with an adaptation of an old tried and true treat: Hello Dollies. I haven't made these in years, and my husband's eyes lit up when he came home and saw a pan sitting on the counter to cool. :)
I must say that these are easy to bake, simple to freeze, delightfully sweet, deliciously rich, and not-one-whit good for you They surely are yummy, though, and filling. A few bites go a long way, even for moi -- the chocoholic.
There are many versions of this recipe on the Internet, and, I assume, in old cookbooks and on recipe cards traded among friends. Below is the recipe my mother clipped from the Atlanta newspaper. Unfortunately, the date is not on the clipping. I have an idea that it is from the early seventies, as I seem to remember that's when we first enjoyed them. At any rate, the early seventies, when I was a young teen and a novice cook, is when I learned how to make them.
Even younger children can follow this recipe with close supervision.
1 stick butter
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 cup coconut
1 cup chopped nuts
1 cup chocolate chips
1 can condensed milk
Melt butter in square pan. Add other ingredients, one at a time and in the order they are in the recipe. Make sure that the mixture is evenly spread. Do not stir. Bake 30 minutes in oven preheated to 325 degrees. Cut in small squares.
As you can see, I used a 9 by thirteen pan and used more graham cracker crumbs, coconut, nuts, and chocolate chips to stretch the recipe to fit. I also used slivered almonds instead of chopped nuts. Note: Many people use chopped pecans, but I also like walnuts or almonds). I am glad that I used almonds in this batch, but I wouldn't make such a heavy layer of them again. I cut the baked and cooled Hello Dollies into squares, placed them in one single layer in freezer bags and froze them. (That was after my beloved Professor Doc Engineer hubby and I sampled them just to make sure that they were safe for our holiday guests. :))