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.
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!
Other than my most recent pumpkin seeds recipe, it’s been a little while since my guy’s given any of my kitchen creations a grunt, let alone two. I know he tends to be a bit stingy with his grunts – they’re reserved for only what his dude-ly palate finds the best of the best. Still, I was starting to get a little pouty – give something a grunt already, man!
So when he gave Applesauce Pancakes with Apple Cider Syrup not just one, but two grunts up, I felt like I’d won a little prize.
Hey, it’s the little things.
These surprisingly fluffy little pancakes have a nice subtle apple flavor enhanced by cinnamon, vanilla, and nutmeg. The syrup, on the other hand, packs a serious apple wallop with caramel-like overtones. Together: Apple breakfast nirvana, worth a coveted Two Grunts Up. Victory is mine, and I didn’t even have to put bacon in it!
Applesauce Pancakes with Apple Cider Syrup
Author: Kitchen Treaty
Recipe type: Breakfast
Yield: 15 4-inch pancakes
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 cups apple cider
- 1 or 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour (substitute another cup of all-purpose flour if you want)
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon (or a hefty pinch) ground nutmeg
- 1¼ cups milk
- 2 eggs
- ⅔ cup applesauce
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
- Make the syrup. Over medium heat in a medium saucepan, combine the cider and brown sugar, then add the cinnamon stick. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low and continue simmering, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes until the mixture is reduced by about ⅔. Remove from heat and let cool (it will thicken as it cools).
- Make the pancakes. In a large bowl, mix together the flours, brown sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
- In a medium bowl, mix together the eggs, milk, applesauce, and vanilla. Stir in the melted butter.
- Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, just until well-incorporated. Do not overmix.
- Pour batter by ¼ cupfuls onto a griddle heated to 350 degrees (or a pan on the stove on medium to medium-high heat). The batter will be somewhat thick – you may have to spread it around a bit with the measuring cup after you pour it. Don’t fret if they’re not perfect circles – rustic is always good! Cook until browned by both sides, and pancake is cooked through.
- Serve with Apple Cider Syrup.
Originally published on The Hazel Bloom November 7, 2010. Updated and posted on Kitchen Treaty November 5, 2012. More about this