I started dating my very first boyfriend when I was a senior in high school, and I remember spending the week before Christmas panicking about what sort of gift to get for him. I didn’t want to get something that would seem like I was trying too hard, but I didn’t want to get something lame either. My mom came to the rescue: she told me to make him candy. Everyone likes candy, she said, especially teenage boys. And she was right. A box of homemade candy was the perfect gift for my very first boyfriend, and it’s the perfect gift for just about anyone on your list this year. It’s thoughtful and special while still being quick and relatively inexpensive. Perfect!
One of the easiest chocolate candies to make is rocky road. It only takes 3 ingredients – almonds, marshmallows, and chocolate – and you can whip up a batch in no time. And it’s pretty!
Slice it into pieces, tuck each piece into a mini cupcake liner, and fill up a Christmas container for a gift just about anyone will love. (Except for those crazy people who don’t like chocolate. If you happen to be one of those crazy people, don’t worry, I love you anyway. More for me!)
For one batch of homemade rocky road you’ll need 1 cup of almonds, 1.5 cups of mini marshmallows, and 2 cups of milk chocolate. I used Hershey’s milk chocolate chips this time, but I’ve also used Guittard or Ghirardelli milk chocolate chips. One note: I much prefer rocky road with roasted almonds – they’re crunchier and have a lot more flavor. So I always roast mine and let them cool completely before mixing them up into the candy. You can also buy almonds already roasted – just make sure they aren’t salted.
Mixing up the candy is incredible easy: just melt the chocolate chips in the microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until it’s shiny and soft. Then stir it until it’s smooth and completely melted. Then mix the chocolate, almonds, and marshmallows together until everything is nicely combined and completely coated.
NOTE: for perfectly flawless looking chocolate candy, use this method to quickly “temper” it: before melting, remove about 2 tablespoons of the chocolate chips and set aside. Melt the remaining chocolate in 30 second intervals until shiny and soft. Stir until smooth and then stir in the unmelted chips you took out at the beginning. Keep stirring until those chips are melted as well. This will keep your chocolate from getting lighter streaks or spots (which you can see in some of today’s photos if you look closely – I skipped this step on this batch of candy). It will also help your chocolate set up faster and not be so melty on your fingers when you touch it.
Once the chocolate, almonds, and marshmallows are evenly mixed, pour the mixture out onto a piece of wax paper in a log shape, like you see above. Allow it to cool at room temperature or in the fridge until the chocolate has hardened, then cut into slices.
I prefer slicing the rocky road as it makes for the prettiest presentation, but you’ll need to keep it in an airtight container once you do so that the marshmallows don’t get stale. If you don’t want to worry about that, you can drop the candy into individual pieces instead of one long log.
Individual candies look quite pretty all packaged up too, it’s just not quite as apparent that it’s rocky road.
(See how the finish of the chocolate isn’t completely smooth? That’s because I forgot to temper. It doesn’t change the taste, but for even prettier candies use the method described above.)
Looking for more Christmas treats? Check out these posts: