in the past two days our kitchen table has become overtaken with cakeballs, gingerbread men, snickerdoodles, caramels, and rice crispy treats laced with crack. yep, must be close to christmas.
i have posted very little about christmas.... i mean, obviously i've been to busy eating the heads off gingerbread men and picking at snickerdoodles. i promise, though i have been doing christmas-y things!
last week i spent some time making hot chocolate mix and cherry hazelnut biscotti. i've also spent a lot of time explaining what exactly biscotti is. i'll tell you what- delicious. growing up, i've got fond memories of making all kinds of christmasy things to take to neighbors around christmas. my mom is a caramel corn fiend, so that was always on the menu, along with cutesy reindeer cookies. thumbprint cookies i couldn't get my hands off of.... and a very memorable year of "christmas fudge" aka hershey's candy and a cutesy song to go along with it my mom made us sing at every. single. door.
anyways, making the stuff brought back good memories... homemade gifts are fun.
alton brown's hot chocolate mix.
2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup cocoa
2 1/2 cups powdered milk
1 tsp salt
2 tsp cornstarch
sprinkle of cayenne pepper (really.)
mix all the above ingredients, heat up milk (almond is delicious) and add desired amount. mix. sip. rinse. repeat.
cherry chocolate hazelnut biscotti
from real simple magazine
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 c toasted hazelnuts
1 c dark chocolate, chopped
1 c dried cherries
preheat oven to 350. line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside
mix first four ingredients in a mixing bowl and set aside
with an electric mixer, mix eggs, sugar, and almond extract for 5 minutes
gradually add flour mixture to liquid. fold in hazelnuts, dark chocolate, and cherries. get your hands in there and mix it all together
on parchment paper, form two logs of dough, side by side. bake until golden brown, 30 minutes
remove from oven and let cool. when cool, slice each log into 3/4 inch strips. turn them on their side, then return the biscotti to the oven for 8 minutes, flipping halfway thorough. remove from oven and let cool. eat with above hot chocolate.