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Homemade Candy Cane Hot Cocoa Mix

Homemade Candy Cane Hot Cocoa Mix

Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 in Drinks, Happy Endings, Holidays, Kid Friendly

Good friends, avert your eyes. Possible Christmas spoilers lie ahead.

Warm, cozy, chocolatey, minty spoilers.

This scrumptious homemade candy cane hot cocoa mix makes the perfect gift for everyone on your “nice” list. Dark chocolate adds depth, crushed candy canes give it a minty twist and the white chocolate rounds it all out. It comes together incredibly quickly with the help of a food processor. Then just fill a few plain pint-size mason jars, dress ‘em up with a label, screw a circle of festive fabric onto the lid, and make friends and family happy and cozy.

Gift a jar with a big bundle of candy canes and maybe even a bottle of peppermint schnapps or Bailey’s Irish cream. ‘Tis the season!

A few people have asked about the labels I used. I sort of cobbled them together. I started with the top left image from this great blank cards template from the wonderful joyeverafter.com. I then created my own custom label using that border in Photoshop, along with the Outlaw font,  then printed them on plain Avery 2” H x 4” W labels and cut them out with scissors.Voila!

Honestly, if I’d been thinking farther ahead, I probably would have bought a batch of these from Paper Source and printed on them – much easier.

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Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls

Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls

Posted on Wednesday, December 14, 2011 in Dessert, Happy Endings, Holidays, Kid Friendly

If you’re looking for a super-easy, crowd-pleasing holiday treat, look no further.

With only five ingredients (six if you add the sprinkles), Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls are a simple, easy goodie that come together in no time at all and will undoubtedly disappear equally quickly. But don’t worry; smiles (and quite possibly recipe requests) will be left behind.

I’d describe how they taste, but it’s probably pretty obvious. Sweet, rich and that delicious, magical combination of peanut butter and chocolate. In other words: Win!

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Double Chocolate Salted Peanut Bark

Double Chocolate Salted Peanut Bark

Posted on Tuesday, December 7, 2010 in Happy Endings, Holidays

This bark is a ridiculously easy candy recipe that’s perfect for supplementing your holiday cookie platters, or even all by itself, tucked in a cute candy bag. It’s also a quick treat to whip up when you’re craving something sweet and salty – and then you can keep it all for yourself. Not that I would ever do that.

The holidays are here! Bring on the unabashed candy making and cookie baking, baby. Guess I’d better uncover the elliptical machine, eh?

This recipe is super easy, but somehow feels a little special, too. The combo of dark and milk chocolates plus the saltiness of the peanuts (plus the added salty boost with a little Fleur de Sel, if you’re up for it) is a winner. Stick ‘em in some cute cupcake liners and they look all special and stuff – before they’re wolfed down with utter abandon, that is.

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Apple Cranberry Crumble Pie

Apple Cranberry Crumble Pie

Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2010 in Dessert, Happy Endings, Holidays

I’ve been baking this apple cranberry pie for family Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners for years. I love that it’s an apple pie, so traditional for the holidays, but the cranberries and crumb topping give it a special – and festive – vibe.

Oh, yes, the crumb topping. The liberal buttery-crisp top blankets the perfectly tender apples and tart cranberries. Served warm with a little vanilla ice cream? Pie nirvana.

Here’s the recipe!

Apple Cranberry Crumble Pie
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Looking for a twist on your typical apple pie recipe? Apple Cranberry Crumble Pie is just different enough to be special – and it may just be the perfect holiday dessert. It’s certainly one of our faves.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Yield: 8
Ingredients
Crumb topping
  • 1 cup flour
  • ½ cup (packed) brown sugar (I prefer dark but light works too)
  • ½ cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
Pie filling
  • 4-5 large apples, peeled, cored, and cut into ¾-inch pieces (about 5 cups) (Granny Smith, Golden Delicious, and Gala are all great)
  • 2 cups of your favorite homemade cranberry sauce or 1 16-ounce can whole-berry cranberry sauce
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
Also
  • 1 pie crust for the bottom. I (hiding my face) use refrigerated crust sometimes, because I’m often short on time and have yet to master pie crust.
  • Vanilla ice cream
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.
  2. Make the crumb topping. Mix the flour, brown sugar, oats, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Add the butter and cut in with your fingers until the mixture resembles large coarse crumbs.
  3. Make the filling. In a large bowl, mix the apples, cranberry sauce, sugar, vanilla, and cornstarch until well mixed.
  4. Place the pie crust in a pie dish, and pour the apple filling into the shell. Mound it a little in the middle.
  5. Sprinkle the crumb topping over the apples. There will be a lot. Pack it down a bit, if necessary.
  6. Place the pie on a baking sheet, and place in the oven. Bake for about an hour and 10 minutes, or until the apples are tender and the crust and top are golden brown.
  7. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for at least 15 minutes.
  8. Serve with vanilla ice cream.
Notes
Adapted Bon Appétit

Originally published on The Hazel Bloom November 10, 2010. Updated and posted on Kitchen Treaty November 6, 2012. More about this

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Fourth of July Sangria

Fourth of July Sangria

Posted on Friday, June 25, 2010 in Drinks, Entertaining, Food, Fruit, Holidays

I’m kind of into the dorky over-the-top holiday themed stuff.

I know I’m a dork. I own it, for the most part. Sometimes I think it would be cooler to be, well, cool – but then I look in the mirror or hear the words coming out of my mouth and I laugh at myself. I am what I am. May as well embrace it.

But enough about me. How about America, and freedom, and liberty, and justice for all? And how about celebrating the day of independence with a tasty, dorkily themed beverage like Fourth of July Sangria?

That’s right, my friends. We’ve got a nice refreshing white sangria with star fruit. And strawberries and blueberries and wine and deliciousness and good times. So how about getting dorky with me for your very own Fourth of July celebration? Jump on in to the uncool pool with me. The water is, actually, pretty fine.

Fourth of July Sangria

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 1 bottle dry white wine (I use pinot grigio, sauvignon blanc would probably work nicely as well)
  • 1 1/2 cups strawberries, hulled and halved
  • 3/4 cup blueberries
  • 1 medium star fruit, sliced
  • 15 maraschino cherries
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate schnapps
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Club soda

Directions:

  1. Add the strawberries, blueberries, star fruit, and cherries to a pitcher.
  2. Pour in the wine and the pomegranate schnapps.
  3. Gently stir in the sugar.
  4. Cover and let sit in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours – or, preferably, overnight.
  5. To serve, fill a glass about 2/3 of the way full with ice cubes. Pour the sangria in about 2/3 full, and add a few pieces of the fruit. Top off with club soda.

IMG_0836

 

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