For our first Christmas together, I made these fast candies for my then-boyfriend. He has begged me for them every holiday since...and we've been married for more than 10 years! —Katherine Job, Carmel, Indiana
- 1 tube (7 ounces) almond paste
- 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/4 to 1 teaspoon water, optional
- 18 pitted dates, halved
- 1-1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
- Flaked coconut or finely chopped almonds, toasted
- In a bowl, combine the almond paste, confectioners' sugar and extract. Knead until mixture forms a ball, adding water if mixture is too crumbly. Cut dates in half widthwise. Wrap about 1-1/2 teaspoons of almond mixture around each date half and roll into a ball.
- In a microwave-safe bowl, melt chocolate chips; stir until smooth. Dip balls in chocolate, then roll in coconut or almonds. Place on a waxed paper-lined baking sheet. Refrigerate until chocolate is set, about 30 minutes. Store in a covered container at room temperature. Yield: 3 dozen.
Originally published as Almond Date Confections in Taste of Home's Holiday & Celebrations Cookbook Annual 2005, p74
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