This wondereful candy recipe is from one of Beverly Nye's cookbooks.
8 oz. Package cream cheese (room temperature)
2 lb. Bag powdered sugar
Coconut (as much as you can knead in)
(You will also need two packages dipping chocolate later)
I mix these together with my stand mixer and get about half a large package of coconut mixed in.*
1/2 teaspoon almond extract -or-
1 teaspoon vanilla extract -or- (and this is what I often do)
Put in 1/2 teaspoon almond extract to the mixture, take about 1/2 of the mixture out of the bowl, add 1/2 or 1 teaspoon of mint extract to the mixture remaining in the bowl.
You can experiment with other extracts. I've used maple extract and kneaded in some chopped nuts. I've also used orange extract. (I wonder what cherry extract would taste like...yum.)
Roll mixture into balls and dip into dipping chocolate. I use a spoon and a fork for this (or you can use professional candy equipment). I bring up the ball from the chocolate and "roll" it onto a fork where the excess can drip through a bit. Then I place it on parchment paper (foil will do just fine, too, you just need something easy to peel off the candy). The dipping chocolate hardens quickly so I find it best to melt just half a package in a small bowl at a time.
*If Beverly was just making mint candy, she would leave out the coconut. Since this recipe makes a large amount, I like to make it all at once and just add the mint extract to the remaining "Mounds" ingredients and make them into patties instead of a round ball...works great, too.
You can really use your creativity with this recipe by changing the extracts around, mixing in finely chopped nuts, before dipping the ball in chocolate you can push a walnut or pecan half in the ball, you can knead in dried or candied fruit (chopped finely)...lots of great things to do with the Mounds recipe as a base.
The base recipe can be made one or two days in advance, just keep it in an airtight container or a bowl that has been tightly sealed with plastic wrap then form and dip into the chocolate when you have time. I made my base on Saturday and wasn't able to form them and dip them until yesterday (Thursday).
You can also make the candy into the balls or patties, place undipped candy on a plate (or cookie sheet if your freezer is big enough), set timer for thirty minutes. Take out the candy and pour into zip-lock bag and freeze. (Ask me why you have to set the timer???) This recipe makes a lot of candy so I dipped only part of them yesterday (using only one package of dipping chocolate) and froze the rest to use as gifts later. All you will have to do is dip them into the chocolate.
You can make these look like a fancy gift by placing individual candies in tiny paper cups and placing them in a tin. It looks uptown for a very small price. I have never had to refrigerate the candy, even with the cream cheese base. It's probably the two pounds of confectioners sugar that preserves it.