Happy Friday everyone! Here’s a Friday present for you:
1 of the most delicious tasting and easy desserts ever. EVER.
Peanut Butter Oreo Truffles
*yields about 20 truffles
6oz of cream cheese (3/4 of an 8oz block)
1 regular sized package of Oreo cookies
1/2 cup of your favorite creamy peanut butter
12 oz. Milk Chocolate
(You could use a bag of Milk Chocolate chips, or, as I do most times when I use melted chocolate, about 3/4 of a Trader Joe’s 1lb Belgian Chocolate Bars)
*Peanut Butter Drizzle
(an optional step that can be achieved with either Wilton’s Peanut Butter Flavored Candy Melts or by melting about 1/2 cup of peanut butter over low heat in a saucepan)
1) In a food processor, pulse your Oreo cookies until they become a fine crumb texture.
2) In the bowl of a standing mixer with the paddle attachment, combine the cream cheese and peanut butter on low speed until fully combined and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Slowly add in the Oreo crumbs until a dough like mixture forms.
3) Line a baking sheet with wax paper. Take about 2-3 tablespoons of the dough and roll between the palms of your hands to form a ball and place on the waxed paper. Once all the dough has been shaped into balls, chill them in the freezer for 1/2 hr – 1 hr. Cream cheese based dough can soften very quickly so this step is important!
4) While the dough is chilling, melt your chocolate in a double boiler. After the balls have chilled, dip each one in the melted chocolate and place on the waxed paper to allow the chocolate to dry.
5)*Optional Step: If you’re feeling adventurous and want to add some peanut butter drizzle, you can either melt about 1/2 of a 12oz bag of Peanut Butter flavored candy melts or you can simply melt 1/2 cup of Peanut Butter over low heat in a saucepan, stirring constantly. Then just dip the fork in the melted peanut butter and drizzle it over the truffles (these chocolate squeeze bottles also create a really nice drizzle effect – you can find them at any Michaels or A.C. Moore in the Cake decorating/candy making section).
Happy 1st Friday of 2013 everyone!
I think the days following January 1st should have a disclaimer that reads “Don’t operate any heavy machinery today”. Ugh. The excitement level has dropped about 20 notches, our wallets are a lighter, our tummies heavier (or mine anyway) – back to work, back to reality, back to winter in New England (or in whatever area of the world you’re in – although summer’s just starting for you other side of the world’ers – jealous)
BUT on the bright side, it’s a brand new year! So many opportunities & new experiences to get excited about – so while the letdown is inevitable, my mind is turning to all the great new things that 2013 will bring. As Anne of Green Gables always used to say “Tomorrow is fresh, with no mistakes in it”, and a new year is just the same (minus the mistake already made of eating Five Guys for dinner last night – BAD idea – even my forgiving stretchy pants are feeling a little snug today)
I know NYE is already a thing of the past, but I have to share a delicious cocktail concoction that I made to ring in the new year. A combination of Pomegranate juice, Domaine de Canton (ginger liquor) and a few other goodies, topped with a splash of bubbly – the perfect libation to end a nearly perfect 2012!
Ginger Pomegranate Sparkler
*yields about 8-10 6oz servings
1 cup Pomegranate Juice
(You could also use cranberry juice or a cran/pomegranate mixture)
1 cup Domaine de Canton (ginger liquor)
Juice of 1 large lime or 2 small ones
1 cup triple sec
1/2 cup brandy
1) In a glass pitcher, combine all ingredients except the Prosecco and let chill for at least 2 hours, up to overnight.
2) Once mixture has chilled to your liking, fill 1/2 a champagne flute with the Pom/Ginger mixture and top the rest off with Prosecco. Feel free to adjust the juice to prosecco ratio, putting more or less of each. But the 1/2 and 1/2 combination will yield about 10 servings (if served in champagne flutes, which usually hold about 6 ounces).
Yum. A bit on the boozy side yes, but New Year’s eve is special and deserves a stiff cocktail that’s pink and has bubbles 🙂
*I truly can’t say enough how so very sorry I am to the families of those lost in yesterday’s tragedy – so many thoughts, prayers and condolences to all of you
* * * * *
Well ladies and gents, we’re about a week and a half away til’ Santa squeezes those rosy buns down the chimney. And I’ve been thinking recently about how much I love this time of year – I really do just love it, maybe a little more every year. But there are some items that seem just a little more special during the holidays – here’s my list:
I don’t even want to know how much butter I’ve used in the last few weeks – but if I added it up, I’m sure I could have a small sized toddler made entirely of butter. Holiday recipes aren’t meant to be ‘butterless’ so hell, add an extra tablespoon or two – you’ll be back to the gym with the rest of the world on January 2nd, sweating yellow butter sweat.
For breakfast – for lunch – for an afternoon snack and then dessert (if not for dinner too) What is it about Christmas that makes people cookie crazy? They make amazing gifts and even better desserts so go ahead, try that new cookie recipe you’ve been eyeing all year – if there was any time to do it, now is it!
December = parties: work parties – family parties – parties for one – christmas eve – christmas day – new years eve – champagne – wine – ‘special punch’ – one tequila – two tequila – three tequila – FLOOR.
Drink up kids – your liver will also be back to the gym on January 2nd with a nice tall H2O on the rocks – so go ahead, get the family size Advil and finish that bottle of pinot! You know you wanna…come on now…
FAMILY AND FRIENDS
It could be your mom, a cousin, a BFFAOT (Apart Or Together – I saw you scratching your head) or your next door neighbor. The holidays are meant for spending time with the ones you care about the most in life and it doesn’t mean that if you don’t have a huge family with first, second and third cousins coming out of the woodwork that you can’t have just as great a time celebrating with a new friend, a co-worker, or heck even Fido the dog!
THINGS THAT SPARKLE
Shamefully bedazzled things of all shapes and sizes: wrapping paper – sparkly tops and dresses – a Clark Griswold portion of christmas lights. A line from an old favorite song of mine says “All that shimmers in this world is sure to fade away…” and while it’s slightly depressing and has NOTHING to do with Christmas, I feel as though it’s fitting. This is the only time of year where excessive sparkle is not only encouraged, it’s mandatory.
When you’re a kid and you open something like 1) underwear 2) new boots 3) a christmas ornament, after subtly rolling your eyes and looking around for the next box that looks like something more desirable that you can actually use for a whole day and then get sick of, well you don’t realize the importance of things that those ‘old people’ tell you that ‘someday you’ll appreciate’. Nothing could be more true than my Aunt Mary’s ornaments – every Christmas, she and Uncle Charlie would host the family for a Christmas party – Santa came – sounded eerily like our Great Uncle Dave, but of COURSE it was just a coincidence – and we’d get our gift from Santa’s sack, usually something small that was on our list but not Nintendo or Teddy Ruxpin – a more modest gift like a barbie or G.I. Joe.
Aunt Mary was an amazing painter – amazing actually doesn’t even accurately describe it. But she would hand paint – HAND paint – an ornament for every.single.grandchild (got all the way up to 17 + 2 great grand’s!) So holy mother of god – I cannot even imagine how long it took her to get all of these done. But every curve on the face of every snowman she painted was perfect, and we’d all say “Thank you Aunt Mary”, tossing the ornament to our mom’s to hold onto so we could get back to Polly Pocket or whatever ridiculous toy we got. But now, so many years later, they mean probably more to me than any stupid gift I ever got as a kid. And she knew that us dumb kids might not realize how special they were just then, but she knew that someday we would. Damn she was smart 🙂
And well, the list could go on and on and ON and on…but you all get the idea and I’m sure have your own favorites that make the Holidays that time of year that is enjoyed so much so, that it seems it’s over as quickly as it began. So take this next week and a half and savor each and every moment! Each and every favorite! And share some please – I’d love to know what makes the Holidays special for you 🙂