The Blind Pig Holiday Goody Basket Ideas

Blind Pig Friends!  Let us apologize for our recent absence.  We made a mad dash trip to New York to visit Piglet #1 last weekend.  We thought we would have time to get things together to send out a post this past week, but as you noticed– it never happened!  We will fill you in on our New York trip later.  Today you are getting the low down on some super Christmas baking treats!

One of  The Blind Pig’s Family favorite holiday traditions is baking and putting together our holiday goody baskets for friends and family.  It is a big event that takes days of baking and decorating to pull together. Whether you are baking for an army of baskets to be delivered to family and friends or just want one special treat to take to Grandma’s house on Christmas day, The Blind Pig Blog has you covered with lots of special treats.  Who needs sugarplums dancing in your head, when you can try one of The Blind Pig’s confections instead?

Here are our ideas that work well in a basket or for a special gift of sweetness and love.

Borghetti  Brownie Caramel Bites

We shared this delicious easy recipe with you in the fall.  Even if you are not a pro baker, you can easily pull this recipe off without a hitch!

Golden Mint Crinkles

This gem of a recipe was our number one post for 2018 and when you taste these, you will see why!  This recipe is a little time intensive, so make sure you have a few hours of time blocked out to pull this off.

Love You More Cookies

This recipe was shared with you in our Valentine post last February.  However, we have been using this for our Christmas cookies for years.  You get excellent sugar cookies for decorating everytime. Don’t forget the Irish cream in the recipe, it gives the cookies a yummy hint of chocolate.

Menta Truffles

These easy to make truffles are so rich and yummy. Your friends and family will think you purchased them from an expensive chocolatier!

Salted Whiskey Caramel Corn

This treat is great around Halloween, but we make again around the holidays.  It is great for placing in a decorative bag and handing out as a special gift.

Spiked Pecan Bars

We shared this with you right before Thanksgiving.  It would make a wonderful addition to a dessert plate for guests to nibble on after a big holiday meal.

Spirited  Chocolate Orange Bars

These versatile bars are great any time of the year.  These would work well on a dessert plate passed around for guests to pick and choose.  The flavor of chocolate paired with a hint of zesty citrus makes the dessert feel light and refreshing.

Thin Mentas

These cookies are time intensive, but a wonderful combination of mint and chocolate for any holiday celebration.

Yum Rum Balls

Our rum balls are easy to make and are an eye catching addition to any goody basket.

Espresso Fudge

If your family likes coffee and chocolate, then this easy recipe is a must to try for your holiday giving.

Whiskey Spiced Pecans

We shared this recipe with you this fall.  We made the recipe again and placed the nuts in decorative baggies to share with our goody boxes.

Do you have your holiday baking complete?  What treats do you usually make for the holidays?  We would love to hear about your ideas and preferences!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of our Blind Pig Friends!  We wish you safe travels and the happiest of Christmas memories.

 

 

 

Yum Rum Balls

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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 http://www.theblindpig.blog for the full  printable recipe.

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.

golden mint crinkles

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

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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