Brrrr It’s Cold Outside….Have a Hot Toddy

When you think of winter you may think of snow, hot chocolate, and cold weather. Last week we shared our Snowed In cocktail with you as an ode to winter.  (How are you doing, friends in the Midwest?)  Sometimes winter isn’t so great.  It also brings with it cold and flu season, so this week want to share with you our Fernet Hot Toddy recipe.

fernet hot toddy

Have you tried a hot toddy before?  If not, this drink is a great drink to have when you feel like you are coming down with a cold or have a sore throat.  It is referred to as a popular home remedy for cold symptoms.  The hot liquid is very soothing to sore throats and honey is believed to have anti-bacterial properties.  We have shared Fernet Branca with you in our post Fernet About It.  Fernet Branca is an amaro that is made with 40 different herbs and spices.  Fernet was originally marketed as an herbal remedy, and when you sip our Fernet Hot Toddy you will understand why.  When we feel a cold coming on, we typically have a hot toddy before bed.  It is especially helpful when we get that weird tickle in the back of our throat.  The Fernet Hot Toddy creates a warm sensation on your insides that is comforting and relaxing.  However, you don’t have to be feeling ill to enjoy a Fernet Hot Toddy.  It is a wonderful beverage to enjoy on any cold dark winter night.

hot toddy1

There are many hot toddy recipes out there, but we prefer the Fernet Hot Toddy.  It has a wonderful herbal aroma and is a mix of interesting flavors.  To make the Fernet Hot Toddy you will need, rye whiskey (We used Templeton Rye.), Fernet Branca, tea, Angostura bitters, maple syrup, lemon, maple syrup and an orange slice and rosemary sprig for garnish. Brew your choice of tea, add the other ingredients and garnish.  Sip steaming warm wrapped up in your favorite blanket by a warm fire.

hot toddy3

You can substitute the maple syrup with honey or agave nectar.  We made ours with both maple syrup and honey.  Honey has properties that help soothe sore throats and may even fight bacteria. You may need to decide which flavor you like better.

If you are viewing this post via email, you can find a complete printable recipe of the Fernet Hot Toddy at our website at www.theblindpig.blog.

Fernet Hot Toddy

Fernet Hot Toddy

You don't have to wait until you are feeling ill to have a Fernet Hot Toddy. It's a delicious cocktail all winter long.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup hot tea
  • Squeeze of lemon
  • 1.5 ounces of rye whiskey
  • .5 ounce of Fernet Branca
  • 2 dashes of Angostura bitters
  • Drizzle of honey, maple syrup or agave nectar
  • Garnish with orange slices and a sprig of rosemary

Instructions

  1. Brew a cup of hot tea.
  2. Add lemon, whiskey, Fernet Branca, and bitters.
  3. Drizzle honey or maple syrup over the top.
  4. Garnish with orange slice and sprig of fresh rosemary.
  5. Enjoy

Try out the Fernet Hot Toddy this weekend, and let us know what you think!

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Look for our January bonus post coming sometime this week.

   

Disclaimer:  Beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older. We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

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Snowed In?

snowed in 001

Let us just start by saying that we planned this post a few weeks ago.  At that time we had noooo idea that the Midwest would be under a winter storm warning.  Currently there is close to a foot of snow on the ground for many of our Midwest followers.  When we created this recipe and came up with the name, we did not realize that the universe was listening so closely.  We apologize.  However, we are sharing a delicious, chocolaty drink with you that we aptly named  Snowed In.  We felt that reflected the weather in much of the country for this time of year. (Yes, parts of Texas did receive some snow two weeks ago.) It has a little chocolaty goodness, a little bit of coffee and a lot of yum!

snowed in 006

There are three main ingredients in Snowed In: Crystal Head Vodka, Cafe Borghetti, and Kerrygold Irish Cream.  Put them together and shake with a little ice, and presto you have a fabulous cocktail to drink next to the warm fire.

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We used chocolate syrup, semi-sweet chocolate shavings and a few espresso beans for garnish.  We showed you our trick for garnishing with chocolate syrup last year when we made Who Needs Half Price Shakes Before 8?

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We’ve made this tasty little drink a couple of times now, and we think we like it more and more every time we make it.  It would be perfect to serve to guests as a dessert drink.  We would love to hear what you think!

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If you  are viewing this post via email, visit us at www.theblindpig.blog for a full printable recipe.

Snowed In

Ingredients

  • 1.5 ounces of Crystal Head Vodka
  • .5 ounces of Cafe Borghetti
  • 2 ounces of Kerrygold Irish Cream
  • Chocolate syrup, shaved semi-sweet chocolate, and espresso beans for garnish

Instructions

  1. Add vodka, Cafe Borghetti, and Kerrygold Irish Cream to a shaker over ice.
  2. Shake for 30 seconds.
  3. Drizzle the inside of a martini glass with chocolate syrup.
  4. Pour contents of shaker into martini glass.
  5. Garnish with shaved chocolate and a few espresso beans.

snowed in

The next time you are snowed in or not, shake up this cocktail to keep you warm on the inside as you cuddle up next to the fire with your honey.

  

Disclaimer:  Beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

 

Top Posts for 2018

Happy 2019!  We hope that you had a wonderful evening of ringing in the New Year.  Early January is always a great time to take stock of where we are headed and where we have been.  We took some time to look over our blog posts from 2018 and wanted to share with you the top ten most popular posts from The Blind Pig for the past year.  We hope that you enjoy looking back and maybe will try out a few of these top recipes in 2019.

Kerrygold Cinnamon Rolls

10.  Kerrygold Cinnamon Rolls

Our mouths start to water just looking at these photos and reflecting on the yummy goodness of these rolls.  This post holds a special place in out hearts, because Rhonda’s mom, Ruth, assisted us in this post.

tower of london guard

9.  London in 4 Days

What a wonderful blessing to visit Blind Piglet #1 while she was studying abroad in London.  It was a whirlwind trip, but well worth it!

grapefruit spritz

8.  Grapefruit Spritz

You have great taste!  We were pleased to see that the Grapefruit Spritz made it into the top ten.  It is such a yummy and refreshing cocktail, and writing this post was so much fun.

caramel rye pie

7.  Rye Rye Miss American Pie

Yes!  This dessert was a fabulous find.  It is definitely going to make it into our summertime dessert rotation.  It is delicious down to the last bite.

fondue 3 ways

 

6.  Do You Fondue?

This post was so much fun because of all of the activity in the background with the Piglets’ friends. As you can tell from the post, there wasn’t a drop left as soon as the photo shoot was over.

tickle me pink

5. Tickle Me Pink

This fun strawberry garnished rose’ sangria is the perfect cocktail for a ladies’ brunch or a bridal shower.  It’s as tasty as it is pretty.

golden mint crinkles

4. Golden Mint Crinkles

Our Golden Mint Crinkles kicked off the holiday baking season, which we could tell that many of you were ready to get started.  Thanks for all of the love and comments about this post.  We feel like we hit a “gold mine” with this recipe and post!

Christmas Morning Bread

3. Christmas Morning Bread

Wow!  The reception from this post was so much fun.  Thank you to all of you who reached out to let us know how much you liked it.  We made it again for our Christmas morning and it was just as delicious the second time.  If you follow Craig on facebook or instagram, you probably saw the pics.

Espresso Fudge

2. Espresso Your Love

This post was a lot of fun to make and shoot, because of this post we started adding in the month bonus posts.  Espresso Fudge is a very easy little treat to make anytime of year.  You don’t have to wait until Feb. 14.

holiday cheese spread

1.  Holiday Cheese Spread

Who knew?  We are glad you enjoyed this post about this quick holiday spread.  It is perfect for an easy take along appetizer or treat for any social gathering.

We look forward to sharing many great recipes and posts with you throughout 2019.  It brings us a great deal of joy to share our home, family and ideas with you.  We love to hear from our readers, and if you have a post idea for 2019, send it our way!

Make sure to share our posts with family and friends on facebook and twitter.  We always welcome more followers to our little tiny corner of the internet!

Best wishes for a healthy and prosperous new year!

signature2 theblindpigblog

Disclaimer:  The beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

New Year’s Eve Treat: Holiday Cheese Spread

holiday cheese spread

Our Christmas was filled with laughter, cheer and lots of good drinks and food.  In fact, we probably partook in a little too much good food, but we just couldn’t help ourselves!  Rhonda made Merry Margaritas and Jingle Gin Punch on Christmas Eve, and Christmas Morning Bread to kick off the day.  We loved hearing from many of you through Facebook and texts that tried out Golden Mint Crinkles and Yum Rum Balls.  Now we are getting back into our exercise routines and regular life.  However, there is another great food and beverage holiday lurking around the corner — NYE!  What are your plans for the big evening?  In the past we have hosted a fun  casino party and served our Pineapple Infused Vodka, but this year we are ringing in 2019 quietly at home.

Whether you are hosting a rocking evening or headed out to ring in the new year with friends, we have a quick and easy holiday appetizer that you can serve:  Holiday Cheese Spread. This spread only looks complicated and tastes even better.  Your friends and family will be very surprised that you whipped this up in a matter of ten minutes.

We adapted this recipe from a recipe we found on www.foodnetwork.com.   You will need a pound of cheddar cheese cut into chunks, softened cream cheese, prosecco (oh bummer!), parsley, nutmeg, red pepper, pecans and dried cranberries.

holidaycheddarspread1

Place the cheeses, prosecco, parsley, nutmeg and red pepper in a food processor.  Process until smooth.  Spoon into a bowl.  Mix in cranberries and pecans.  Cover and chill.  We refrigerated ours for a couple of hours so the flavors could blend.

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Place in a serving bowl and voila!  Now you have an easy tasty fresh appetizer for your holiday party.  We served ours with French bread slices for our photos.  Later we ate the remaining spread with crackers.  We preferred it with crackers, but you can also serve it with fresh veggies.

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The cranberries and pecans give the spread a more decadent and festive look, and you can drink the rest of the prosecco as you wish! (wink)

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If you are viewing this post in your email, visit us at www.theblindpig.blog for a printable version of the recipe for Holiday Cheese Spread.

Holiday Cheese Spread

Holiday Cheese Spread

Ingredients

  • 1 pound of cheddar cheese, cut into small cubes
  • 4 ounces of cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup Prosecco
  • 1 tsp. parsley flakes
  • 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp. ground red pepper
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans

Instructions

  1. Place first six ingredients in a food processor. Process until smooth.
  2. Place in a bowl and stir in dried cranberries and pecans.
  3. Cover and chill for about 2 hours.
  4. Serve with slices of french bread, crackers or fresh vegetables.

If you are planning your NYE, here are some other great ideas for New Year’s Drinks:

Midnight Spice

Merry Margarita

Aperol Spritz

Boulevardier

Cranberry Rum Slush

French 75

Gin and Tonic

Jingle Gin Punch

Pineapple Infused Vodka

Rojo

Zaya Manhattan

Have a safe and happy New Year’s Eve!  We will see you in 2019!

   

Disclaimer:  The beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking and never drink and drive.

Add Some Punch to Your Holidays

‘Twas two days before Christmas and all through The Blind Pig home base,

every creature was stirring amid the holiday chase.

The stockings were hung by the chimney in a row,

In hopes that soon everything would be ready to go.

Is it just us or has Christmas come upon us quickly?  Today we were still scurrying around buying and wrapping last minute presents, delivering our goody baskets, and sending off one last Christmas card.  We hope that your holidays are festive, relaxing and fun.  To make your holidays extra delicious, we have one final holiday recipe to share with you: Jingle Gin Punch.

Jingle Gin Punch

 

We were a little hesitant about sharing a punch recipe with you.  Punches tend to be overly sweet and sipping one cup is all that we can usually take.  However, we think that you and your guests will be pleasantly surprised with the citrus blend of blood oranges, navel oranges, lemons and limes in this gin based punch topped off with a little sparkling wine.

jingle gin punch3

To make this punch we used Malfy Sicilian Blood Orange Gin. Yummo! Open this bottle up and take a sniff of that citrusy goodness.  This is the  sister to Malfy Limone that we shared with you in our Gin and Tonic recipe.  The Malfy Sicilian Blood Orange gives this punch a beautiful color and is very inviting when garnished with slices of oranges, limes and lemons. You might be thinking, “Wait, Rhonda and Craig, I’m not a gin drinker.”  Hey, we get it, but after trying this recipe, you just might become one!

jingle gin punch1

So here’s what you need to rush out and buy for the Jingle Gin Punch, which was named by Blind Piglet #2 by the way.  You will need sugar, fresh mint sprigs, vanilla beans, Malfy Sicilian Blood Orange Gin, fresh lemon juice, dry sparkling wine, and water.  Hint:  The vanilla beans were a bit difficult for us (Rhonda) to find.  We finally tracked some down at Sprouts.  However, if you don’t have a Sprouts or a Whole Foods in your area, add a teaspoon of vanilla to the recipe.

jingle gin punch5

Start by making some simple syrup.  We’ve made this before for other recipes like our Zaya Mojito recipe.  Place two cups of water in a saucepan with 2 cups of granulated sugar on medium heat and stir until sugar is dissolved.  Add mint and a vanilla bean sliced length wise, so the flavor can blend with the simple syrup.  Remember:  If you don’t have vanilla beans, you can use vanilla flavor.  Set the simple syrup aside to cool.

 

Combine gin, lemon juice, water, and mint-vanilla syrup.  Chill for 4 hours.

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Add gin mixture to punch bowl and top off with sparkling wine.  Garnish with mint leaves and citrus slices. Serve up!

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If you are reading this post via email.  Visit us at www.theblindpig.blog for the full printable recipe for Jingle Gin Punch.

Jingle Gin Punch

Yield: 12 servings

Jingle Gin Punch

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 4 cups of water
  • 4 fresh mint sprigs
  • 1 vanilla bean split
  • 1 750 ml. bottle of Malfy Sicilian Blood Orange Gin
  • 1 3/4 cups of fresh lemon juice
  • 1 750 ml. bottle of dry sparkling wine
  • Garnish: Fresh mint leaves and citrus slices

Instructions

  1. Make vanilla-mint simple syrup.
  2. Combine 2 cups of water and 2 cups of granulated sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Add 4 mint sprigs and a vanilla bean sliced lengthwise in half. Cool. Remove mint and vanilla bean
  3. Stir together gin, lemon juice, 2 cups of water, and 2 1/2 cups of vanilla-mint syrup. Cover and chill for 4 hours.
  4. Place gin mixture in punch bowl. Add sparkling wine and garnish with mint sprigs and citrus slices.

Will you be merry and bright with Jingle Gin Punch this Christmas Eve?  We are prepping our Christmas Holiday Bread for Christmas morning.  We hope that you have a safe and wonderful Christmas with lots of good drinks, good food, and good friends!

From our Blind Pig Family to yours Merry Christmas!

Other great holiday recipes you may have missed…

Midnight Spice

The Thin Mint

Cranberry Rum Slush

Menta Truffles

Yum Rum Balls

Christmas Morning Bread

Kerrygold Cinnamon Rolls

Kerrygold French Toast

    

Disclaimer:  Beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

Christmas Morning Bread

Christmas Morning Bread

One of the best things about Christmas is jumping out of bed early in the morning in anticipation of unwrapping presents under the tree.  Since our family usually has a big meal planned for Christmas, we don’t tend to eat a huge breakfast.  If you have guests staying with you, it’s nice to put your best foot forward at breakfast — especially on Christmas morning.  We are sharing an easy, tasty and fresh recipe with you that will delight all of the members of your family on that joyous holiday morning.  Your house guests will think that you went all out just for them.  You can smile graciously.  No need to tell them how easy this delectable breakfast was to make.

This recipe was a combination of a few recipes that we had found over the years.  One recipe was from Taste of Home December 2017 issue and the other was from Southern Living December 2009, and then we added in a little twist of our own. This great recipe can be prepped a day ahead and baked fresh in the morning or warmed in the oven.  To make Christmas Morning Bread you will need, sugar, cinnamon, frozen bread roll dough, Kerrygold butter, chopped pecans, brown sugar, Templeton Rye whiskey and semisweet baking chocolate bar.

First we started to thaw out our frozen rolls.  They were not completely thawed by the time we started to work with the dough, but we think it helped to have the dough slightly thawed.  You can make your bread from scratch like Grandma Ruth likes to do, but we opted for the frozen dough which was easier.

Next we combined the sugar and cinnamon.  We melted our Kerrygold butter in the microwave.  We sprinkled a few of our chopped pecans in the bottom of a sprayed bunt pan.  Next we made our whiskey caramel sauce.  We placed brown sugar, butter, and whiskey in a small saucepan; brought it to a boil;  cooked and stirred for 3 minutes. Then removed from heat to cool.

After about 5 minutes,  we poured about 1/3 of caramel in the bottom of the bundt pan with the pecans.  This gave the top of our bread a nice sweet glaze.

We prepped our area by having the rolls handy, along with the butter, sugar cinnamon mixture and bundt pan.  Next we took a roll.  Dipped it in the butter, and then rolled the top 1/2 of the roll in the sugar-cinnamon mixture.  We placed the roll in the bottom of the pan.  We continued until we had a fairly even layer of rolls on the bottom of the pan.  We drizzled caramel mixture and pecans over the first layer of rolls.  Then we continued layering the rolls and adding pecans and caramel drizzle over each layer until we had 3-4 layers. Our package of rolls was 3 lbs.  We thought, “What the heck.  The more the merrier, right?”  Wrong.  It was too much dough and our rolls overflowed in the oven.  Stop at about 2 pounds of dough. (wink)

Next we covered with plastic wrap and placed in a warm toasty spot in our kitchen to rise for about 45 minutes.  If you want to bake these Christmas morning, you can cover and chill them in the fridge.  We would suggest taking them out and letting them rise slightly before placing in the oven.

When you are ready to bake, place them in an oven that has been preheated to 350 degrees.  Make sure to place a baking sheet covered in foil on the bottom oven rack. (Believe us, you do not want to skip this part.  We saved ourselves from cleaning up a huge mess by doing this!) Bake bread for 50-55 minutes or until golden brown.  Remove from oven. Cool in pan for about 10 minutes, and then invert on a serving plate.

To make the chocolate whiskey glaze you will need to melt the chocolate in a small microwave safe bowl.  We melted ours in small bursts of 30 seconds, so we didn’t over cook.  When chocolate is melted, stir in 1/4 cup of whiskey and stir until smooth.  Drizzle the chocolate whiskey glaze over the top of the bread.

Christmas Morning Bread

Yield: 12 servings

Christmas  Morning  Bread

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 2lb package of frozen bread rolls
  • 1/2 cup Kerrygold butter, melted
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup Kerrygold butter cubed
  • 1/4 cup Templeton Rye whiskey for caramel sauce
  • 1 semisweet baking chocolate bar
  • 1/4 cup Templeton Rye whiskey for chocolate glaze

Instructions

  1. Thaw bread rolls slightly.
  2. Stir together granulated sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
  3. Melt 1/2 cup of butter.
  4. Make whiskey caramel. Bring brown sugar, 1/4 cup of Kerrygold butter, and 1/4 cup of Templeton Rye whiskey to a boil in a small saucepan. Cook and stir 3 minutes. Remove from heat and cool for about 5 minutes.
  5. Place 1/3 cup of chopped pecans in the bottom of a sprayed bundt pan.
  6. Drizzle 1/3 of whiskey caramel sauce in bottom of bundt pan.
  7. Dip rolls in melted butter and then roll in cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place in a layer in the bottom of the bundt pan.
  8. Sprinkle 1/3 of pecans and drizzle 1/3 of caramel sauce over the bottom layer.
  9. Continue layering rolls dipped in butter and coated in cinnamon-sugar topped off with pecans and caramel for about 3 layers.
  10. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for about 45 minutes, or place in a refrigerator over night.
  11. Place a cookie pan covered with foil on the bottom oven rack. This will protect your oven from possible overflow.
  12. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake for about 50-55 minutes.
  13. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
  14. Invert onto a serving plate.
  15. Make the chocolate glaze by melting semisweet chocolate in a microwave in short bursts.
  16. Add 1/4 cup whiskey to chocolate and stir until smooth.
  17. Drizzle chocolate glaze over rolls.
  18. Serve warm.

If you are viewing this post in your email, visit us at www.theblindpig.blog for a full printable recipe of Christmas Morning Bread.

When we made our bread in our test kitchen, it did not last long.  Blind Piglets #2 and #3 and their friends finished it off pretty quickly.  We had a few left overs for the next day, and we think it tasted better on day 2.

Are you going to treat your family Christmas morning?  Do you need to impress your mother-in-law?  Whether you are staying in or headed out, Christmas Morning Bread will be sure to become one of your family’s holiday favs.  Let us know if you try it out.  We love hearing what you think!

   

December Bonus Post: Merry Margarita!

It’s our favorite time of the month– bonus post time!  We have been working on perfecting this recipe for a couple of weeks now, and we feel like we have finally hit the mark.  This festive margarita will help you and your friends ring in the holidays with lots of Christmas cheer!

This recipe is very easy. We tried out many different combinations and ended up returning to our tried and true base for our Skinny  Agave Margarita.  To make the Merry Margarita, you will need cocktail ready agave nectar, Corralejo Reposado Tequila, fresh lime juice, cranberry juice (We used diet cranberry juice.), and mint leaves with fresh cranberries for garnish.

If you are viewing this post in your email, visit our site to get a printable version of the Merry Margarita recipe.

Merry Margarita!

Yield: 1

Merry Margarita!

Ingredients

  • 1 ounce of Corralejo Tequila
  • 1 ounce of cranberry juice
  • 1/2 ounce of agave nectar
  • 1/2 ounce of fresh lime juice

Instructions

  1. Fill shaker halfway with ice.
  2. Add tequila, agave nectar, cranberry juice and lime juice.
  3. Shake for 30 seconds.
  4. Strain and pour into margarita glass.
  5. Garnish with fresh mint leaves and fresh cranberries.

We served our Merry Margarita without ice, but you may want to add some crushed or sonic ice for an ice cold marg and a special touch.  This drink is easy to drink with the right amount of cranberry to give the drink a rosy glow, but not overpower the taste.  We garnished ours with some fun Christmas tooth picks and alternating mint leaves and cranberries.  Try adding some fun salt to the rim or float cranberries in your cocktail.  Make it fun and festive

Will you be serving the  easy Merry Margarita at your holiday celebrations? Santa needs a little extra cheer, so this is definitely what we are leaving by the tree with some Golden Mint Crinkles!  Enjoy the rest of your week.  We will see you this weekend when we share a delicious reason that you will want to get out of bed on Christmas morning!

Here are some other holiday cocktails you may want to try–

Three Hot Chocolates with a Twist

Cranberry Rum Slush

Gold Medal Coffee

Midnight Spice

Disclaimer:  The beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

 

Saucy Gift Ideas for the Holidays

We are so glad to see many of you sharing and commenting our latest posts: Golden Mint Crinkles and Yum Rum Balls.  ‘Tis the season to share and give, so keep on sharing.  This week we have another great idea for giving and sharing this season.  

If you are looking for an easy treat to share in a goody bag, with your child’s teacher, the mail man, or just a little something special to add to a gift, Kerrygold Hot Fudge Sauce is a great place to start.  

Kerrygold Hot Fudge Sauce is a great addition to a holiday gift basket.

This sauce is a great topping for a variety of treats and desserts.  Drizzle some over a sponge cake for a little extra pizzazz.  Serve over a bowl of fresh berries.  Use it for a yummy ice cream sundae.  Warm it up and place in a fondue pot with lots of fun fruit, brownies, marshmallows, or angel food cake dippers.  Drizzle some over a pile of pancakes or french toast on Christmas morning.  Get creative, and let us know how you used the sauce.

Getting organized took longer than actually making the sauce.  First decide how you want to package the sauce.  Rhonda went to Hobby Lobby and found a variety of cute little jars and bottles.  We have also seen bottles similar to this at World Market, or you can purchase small canning jars at the grocery store.  Make sure that the bottles are safe for food, and not just made for decoration.  Bring the bottles home and wash them thoroughly.  We put ours through the dishwasher on high heat to make sure they were well sanitized.  We (Rhonda) found some fun tags, bows and ribbons at Hobby Lobby to dress up the bottles and jars for a festive flair.

You can find a variety of jars and bottles at Hobby Lobby.  Make sure they have been thoroughly washed.

Next start the process of making the sauce.  You will need a package of unsweetened chocolate baking squares, butter, sugar, milk, vanilla, salt and Kerrygold Irish Cream. We have a variety of variations to this recipe that we will share with you below.

Place the chocolate and butter (We used Kerrygold butter, of course.) in a small saucepan over low heat stirring constantly.  Add the sugar and cook for an additional 30 seconds.  Add the milk stirring constantly and cook for an addition 3-5 minutes until the chocolate sauce is smooth and creamy.  You want to keep the heat on low and do not let the sauce boil.  Remove from heat and stir in vanilla, salt and Kerrygold Irish Cream.  Yes, it’s that quick and easy!

Kerrygold Hot Fudge Sauce

Ingredients:
1 -8 oz package of unsweetened chocolate baking squares
1/2 cup of Kerrygold butter
2 cups sugar
1 cup milk
1 ounce of Kerrygold Irish Cream
1 tsp. vanilla
1/8 tsp. salt

Melt unsweetened chocolate baking squares and butter in a saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly. Add 2 cups of sugar and continue to stir for about 30 seconds. Add milk to saucepan and continue to stir until sauce is smooth and creamy. Make sure sugar is dissolved, but do not allow the sauce to boil. Remove from heat and add vanilla, salt and Kerrygold. Cool before placing in container.

Can be refrigerated for up to two weeks. Reheat sauce in microwave prior to serving.

Makes approximately 3 cups.

The sauce is good for up to two weeks when stored in the refrigerator.  It is  best served warm, so you will want to include that information on your instruction tags to your friends.  We made sure to remind our friends to place the sauce in a different container before placing in the microwave.  

We love choices and variety, and there are several variations you may choose from for your sauce depending on your taste.  For a coffee flavor with your chocolate sauce, substitute the Kerrygold Irish Cream with Cafe Bourghetti Espresso Liqueur.  Want a little mint and chocolate?  Add Branca Menta in place of the Kerrygold.  Caution:  Branca Menta is strong, so we would only include half as much Branca Menta as Kerrygold.  Feeling a little frisky and want some whiskey?  Replace the Kerrygold with Templeton Rye Whiskey.  Zaya Rum and chocolate complement each other nicely, as well. So now you have choices to satisfy the range of the taste buds in your rainbow of friends and family.  

Try it out this week and let us know if you will be in the spirit of giving some Kerrygold Hot Fudge Sauce this season!  It’s time for our December Bonus post this week, so be on the lookout for our Merry Margarita!

Yum Rum Balls

yumrumballs2

Cheers, Friends!  You know how we told you that if you get one of our holiday goody bags from us that you were going to get some Golden Mint Crinkles?  Well… we kind of ate all of them.  Rhonda made an effort.  She quickly scooped up extras and put them in the freezer for safe keeping.  Unfortunately, the Blind Piglets, and both of us kept sneaking one here and two there, so now there are none left.  We told you that was a winning recipe!  No worries.  We will make more and try to get them in the goody bags before we inhale all of them again.

Today we are sharing another great holiday goody bag treat.  Yum Rum Balls! (stop snickering)  We’ve made rum balls before, but this recipe seems to have more flavor and flair than other rum ball recipes we’ve tried.  We hope that you like it as much as we do.  This recipe requires some prep on collecting the ingredients, but is easy to pull together once you are ready to get started.

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There are a couple tricky ingredients.  The first tricky ingredient is Nabisco Wafer Cookies.  We first introduced these to you with the Spirited Chocolate Orange Bars.  You don’t find these on the cookie aisle. They are usually placed with the ice cream toppings.  The second tricky ingredient is almond paste.  We had not used almond paste before, but the cashier at Whole Foods told us that it was baking’s best kept secret.  So apparently the secret is now out!  Use almond paste for cookies and pie crusts.  You can find it on the baking aisle. We bought ours from Whole Foods.  When we googled it, we noticed that other grocery stores carry it.

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Other ingredients that you need for Yum Rum Balls are: dark chocolate chips, sour cream, vanilla wafer cookies, powdered sugar, cocoa, Zaya Rum, melted butter and lots of sprinkles!

Place chocolate chips in a microwavable bowl, and cook in short bursts of no more than 45 seconds at a time.  In between cooking stir until chips are melted with a creamy consistency.  It is better to be patient and take this step slow instead of overcooking the chips.

Place the whole box of vanilla wafers in a food processor or blender and blend until you have fine crumbs.  Do the same for the box of chocolate wafer cookies.

In a mixer combine the melted chocolate with sour cream and almond paste.  Mix on medium until well combined.

In a large bowl combine both cookie crumbs, powdered sugar, cocoa, rum and melted butter.  Stir with a large spoon until well combined.

Next add the crumb mixture to the chocolate chip mixture in the mixer.  Mix on medium until all ingredients are well blended.  The mixture will have a paste-like texture.

Refrigerate the dough for a minimum of an hour and up to 24 hours.

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Place sprinkles in a bowl.  Using a small scoop, scoop balls of mixture.  Remember our trick from our Thin Mentas and Golden Mint Crinkles?  Spray your hands with cooking spray to make the handling of the dough easy.  Roll dough in your hands to smooth out edges.

Drop balls into the sprinkles.  Roll in sprinkles to cover completely.  Use hands to press sprinkles into dough and to make sure balls are coated.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.  Makes approximately 4 dozen.

If you want to get creative, you can coat the Yum Rum Balls in different colored sprinkles, chocolate sprinkles, Heath Bar Crumbs, nuts and more!

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If you are viewing this post in email, visit us at www.theblindpig.blog for the full  printable recipe.

Yum Rum Balls

Yield: 4 dozen

Yum Rum Balls

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of dark chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup of sour cream
  • 1/3 cup of almond paste
  • 1 box of vanilla wafer cookies
  • 1 box of Nabisco chocolate wafer cookies
  • 2 cups of powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup of dark cocoa
  • 2/3 cup of Zaya Rum
  • 1/2 cup of butter, melted
  • 2 cups of sprinkles

Instructions

  1. Place chocolate chips in a microwavable bowl. Cook chips in quick bursts of 30-45 seconds until melted and creamy.
  2. Empty box of vanilla wafer cookies in a food processor or blender and blend until cookies are fine crumbs.
  3. Repeat step 2 with chocolate wafer cookies.
  4. In a mixer combine melted chips, sour cream, and almond paste. Mix on medium until well blended.
  5. In a large bowl combine wafer crumbs, powdered sugar, cocoa, rum and melted butter. Stir with a large spoon until well mixed.
  6. Add wafer mixture to mixer and blend on medium speed. Mix until all ingredients until well blended. Mixture will have a paste-like texture.
  7. Refrigerate dough for 1-24 hours.
  8. Using a small scoop form balls in hands.
  9. Place balls in bowl of sprinkles and use hands to coat well with sprinkles.
  10. Refrigerate balls or serve immediately.

The flavor of the rum rings through in these rum balls that are sweet, but not overly rich.  They make a great addition to a holiday tray at a holiday party or added to a goody basket.  We promise to save some of these for our goody basket friends.  Christmas needs to come quick!

 

Share this recipe and more with your friends, by telling them about our blog and following us on Instagram and Pinterest!

We are just getting started with the holiday fun around here!  Check in with us next week for more great holiday and entertaining ideas.

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Yum Rum Balls are a fun and festive way to kick off the holiday season.

   

Holiday Treats Worth Their Weight in Gold

Welcome back Blind Pig Friends.  How was your Thanksgiving? The big question is did you serve the Prosecco Peas?  We know some of you considered it, but did you follow through?  We had a great time eating turkey with family in the Show Me State!  We always enjoy visiting the Midwest to see family during the holidays.  We returned with a vehicle for Blind Pig #2.  You can see more about that on Instagram.  With our tummies full of turkey and Templeton Pecan Pie our sights now turn to the Christmas holiday season.  We have lots of great ideas and recipes lined up to share with you from now until NYE.

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To kick off the season, we have a special, golden, sweet, treat for you.  This cookie recipe has been in Rhonda’s stash for years and has long been a family favorite.  These cookies easily make their way into the friends and family goody basket each season, but this year they are new and improved.  When you put these goodies on Santa’s plate, they will not disappoint!

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What makes these cookies so special?  We slipped a little extra something in the dough by adding Kerrygold Irish Cream.  We’ve shared other recipes that featured Kerrygold  before, such as, our Twisted Mississippi Mud Brownies.  We dressed these cookies in their finest glittery holiday attire to add a festive flair. Our harshest critiques, Blind Pig #2 and Blind Pig #3 got in on the action of helping with this post by taste testing the results.  Both piglets agreed that the Golden Mint Crinkles are better than the original recipe. (No Blind Piglets were harmed in the making of this post.)

To start you will need the following ingredients: flour, unsweetened cocoa, baking soda, sugar, brown sugar, Kerrygold butter, vanilla, Kerrygold Irish Cream, eggs, package of Dove Dark Chocolate and Mint Swirl Chocolates, and gold sugar crystals. We found gold sugar crystals in the baking aisle at Kroger.

Heat oven to 375 degrees.  In a small bowl combine flour, cocoa, and baking soda. Blend well.

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In a large bowl, beat 1 cup sugar, brown sugar, butter until light and fluffy.  Add vanilla and eggs; beat well.  Add Kerrygold Irish Cream and mix through.  Add flour mixture slowly and mix well.

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Chill the dough for about an hour.  Do not skip this step.  It is very helpful to have well chilled dough for the next step.

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Chill the dough for at least an hour

After dough has chilled and you have thoroughly washed your hands, unwrap the chocolates and place nearby in a bowl.  In order to easily prepare the cookies, make sure chocolates, cookie sheets, golden sugar crystals poured into a saucer and a tablespoon are in close proximity.  Before forming cookies, spray your hands with cooking spray.  This enables you to form the dough around the chocolates while avoiding a clumpy, sticky mess.  (We have learned this the hard way after years of making this recipe.)  Scoop a spoonful of dough and place a chocolate inside the dough.  Using your fingers, form the dough around the chocolate.  Dip the dough in the sugar crystals and place on a cookie sheet.  Continue until 12 cookies have been placed on the sheet.  (We place our dough back in the fridge in between filling the trays.)

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Ready for the oven

Bake cookies at 375 degrees for 7-10 minutes.  You do not want the cookies to be  over baked.  It is better to pull them from the oven looking a little under baked. You want the cookies to have a slightly crinkled or cracked look.  Leave the cookies on the cookie sheet for 2-3 minutes after removing from the oven to continue the baking process.  Next remove cookies from sheet and place on parchment paper to continue to cool.

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Cookies will be slightly cracked

Golden Mint Crinkles

Yield: 4 dozen cookies

Golden Mint Crinkles

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened coca
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup Kerrygold butter softened
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ounce Kerrygold Irish Cream
  • 48 Dove Dark Chocolate Mint Swirls
  • Gold sugar crystals

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a small bowl, combine flour, cocoa and baking soda. Blend well.
  3. In a large bowl, beat 1 cup sugar, brown sugar, and butter until light and fluffy.
  4. Add vanilla and eggs; beat well.
  5. Add Kerrygold Irish Cream; mixing through.
  6. Slowly add flour mixture and blend well.
  7. Chill dough for one hour in refrigerator.
  8. On a small plate pour gold sugar crystals. Unwrap chocolates.
  9. Shape a tablespoon of dough around 1 candy covering completely.
  10. Press dough into gold sugar crystals and place on a cookie sheet.
  11. Bake cookies at 375 for 7-10 minutes, until set and slightly cracked.
  12. Cool cookies two minutes on cookie sheet and then remove to cool on parchment paper.

The yummy creaminess of the Kerrygold Irish Cream complements the chocolate cookie, and who can resist the melted minty goodness surprise on the inside?

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These treats will delight family and friends throughout the holiday season, and have them begging for the recipe.  Golden Mint Crinkles are a hit at cookie exchanges.  If you are a lucky recipient of a Blind Pig Holiday Goody Basket, you may be receiving some of these goldies.

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If you are viewing this post in your email, visit us at theblindpig.blog to find the printable recipe.

Try out the Golden Mint Crinkles.  We would love to hear what you think!

If you are new to The Blind Pig Blog, welcome.  We are glad that you stopped by.  We would love to hear what you think about our blog and would love you even more if you became a permanent subscriber!

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