Sweet Holiday Treats
The holiday season means dining on lots of delicious food with friends and family. Give each of your guests a sweet ending to their meal by showing off your dessert skills with one of these sweet holiday treats!
Peppermint Crunch Puppy Chow
5 cups Rice Chex cereal
10 ounces melting white chocolate OR vanilla flavored Almond Bark
1 cup crushed candy canes
1 cup powdered sugar
1. Pour 5 cups of Chex Cereal into a large bowl.
2. Melt white chocolate/almond bark according to the package directions. Pour melted chocolate over cereal, stirring and folding until the cereal is completely covered. Fold in the crushed candy canes.
3. In a large zipped top bag or covered container, add the powdered sugar. Pour the chocolate covered cereal/candy canes into the large bag or container. Seal the bag or container and shake until all the cereal is coated with the powdered mixture.
4. Discard excess powder and enjoy!
Photo Credit: http://sallysbakingaddiction.com
Hot Chocolate with Peppermint Stick
Hot cocoa mix
Marshmallows or whip cream
1 box of peppermint candy canes
1 cup milk chocolate chips
Christmas sprinkles (optional)
1. Make you favorite hot cocoa mix and add marshmallows or whip cream.
2. In a double boiler, mix milk chocolate until smooth and melted. Dip ends of candy canes in chocolate and place on parchment paper to harden.
3. Add festive sprinkles to chocolate (optional).
Photo Credit: http://www.recipegirl.com/
Chocolate Cherry Kisses
1 cup unsalted butter, softened, but still cool
1 cup powdered sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
2 tsp. maraschino cherry juice
1/4 tsp. almond extract
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup maraschino cherries, chopped
Granulated sugar, for sprinkling the cookies
36 milk chocolate kisses, unwrapped
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2. In the bowl of your standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter at medium speed until creamy, about 1 minute.
3. Reduce the speed to the lowest setting and slowly add the powdered sugar and salt.
4. Add the cherry juice and the almond extract until combined.
5. With the mixer still on low, slowly add the flour, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
6. Increase the mixer speed to medium and add the cherries.
7. Shape the dough into 1-inch balls, and place the balls on a baking sheet, approximately 2 inches apart.
8. Using your thumb, gently press each cookie in its center until the cookie is about 1/2-inch thick.
9. Sprinkle each cookie with a little granulated sugar.
10. Bake the cookies until the bottoms are lightly browned, about 14 minutes.
11. Once removed from the oven, immediately press a chocolate kiss into each cookie’s center.
12. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
Photo Credit: http://www.flouronmyface.com
1 package yellow cake mix
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 1/2 cup eggnog
4 Tbsp. butter, melted
2 Tbsp. rum (optional)
Powdered sugar for dusting
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Butter and flour a standard bundt pan (or use cooking spray that contains flour). Don’t skip this step, you’ll have a sticky mess on your hands.
4. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 45-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
5. Cool 10 minutes and invert onto a cooling rack and cool completely. Dust with powdered sugar and serve.
Photo Credit: http://truesouthernelegance.blogspot.com
Pecan Pie with Chocolate Surprise
1/2 box frozen pie dough, thawed, or your favorite single-crust recipe
3 extra large eggs
1 cup dark corn syrup
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
4 Tbsp. butter, melted
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup pecan halves
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup heavy cream, whipped with a bit of sugar and vanilla, to serve
3. Remove pie shell from the refrigerator. Sprinkle the bottom with the chocolate chips. Pour in the pecan filling and back the pie for 15 minutes.
4. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and continue to bake for another 15-20 minutes, or until the edges are set and the center quivers slightly. Do not over bake. Let the pie cool to room temperature. Serve with whipped cream.
Pumpkin Dump Cake
15 ounces canned pumpkin puree
1 1/2 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1/3 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
3 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 box vanilla cake mix
1 stick butter, melted
2. Whisk in cream and sugars. Add salt and spices, stirring to combine. Pour into a 9×9 inch, greased baking dish. Sprinkle vanilla cake mix over the top of the pumpkin mixture. Carefully drizzle butter all over the top of the cake mix.
3. Bake for one hour or until filling is set (will still jiggle slightly) and top is golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.
Panettone Bread Pudding
1 Italian panettone, about 1.2 lbs.
Unsalted butter, for greasing the dish
3 extra large whole eggs
8 extra large egg yokes
5 cups half-and-half
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. pure almond extract
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup sliced almonds
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Trim the dark brown outer crust from the panettone (optional). Cut the rest of the loaf in one inch cubes and place on a baking sheet in single layer. Toast the panettone for 10 minutes, until lightly browned.
3. Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish with butter. Place the panettone cubes in the baking dish.
4. In a large bowl, whisk together the whole eggs, egg yolks, half-and-half, vanilla and almond extracts and sugar. Pour this custard mixture over the panettone. Set aside for 10 minutes so the bread soaks up the custard. Scatter the sliced almonds over the top of the pudding.
5. Place the baking dish into a larger pan and add very hot tap water to the larger pan until it is halfway up the side of the baking dish. Cover the larger pan with aluminum foil, tenting the foil so it doesn’t touch the pudding. Cut a few holes in the foil to allow steam to escape.
6. Bake the pudding for 45 minutes.
7. Uncover and bake for 40-45 more minutes, until the custard is set and the top of the pudding is light golden brown. Allow to cool for 15 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies
1/2 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup sugar
1 egg, separated
2 Tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup baking cocoa
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup finely chopped walnuts
1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar
1 Tbsp. butter, softened
2 tsp. milk
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
26 milk chocolate kisses
1. In a large bowl, cream butter 1/2 cup butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolk, two tablespoons milk and one teaspoon vanilla. Combine the flour, cocoa and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Cover and refrigerate for one hour or until easy to handle.
2. In a small bowl, whisk egg white until foamy. Shape dough into one inch balls; dip in egg white, then roll in chopped walnuts. Place on greased baking sheets. Using a wooden spoon handle, make an indentation in center of each cookie. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until center is set.
3. For filling, combine the confectioner’s sugar, one tablespoon butter, two teaspoons milk and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla; stir until smooth. Spoon or pipe 1/4 teaspoon into each warm cookie; gently press a chocolate kiss in the center. Carefully remove from pans to wire racks to cool.