Mulled Wine

mulled wine

There is nothing more comforting during the holidays then a glass of mulled wine.

Watching the snow fall with a piping hot mug of this scrumptious beverage feels decadent, like you are relaxing at a chalet in the Swiss Alps.

Of course then you snap back to reality and realize that there is chaos all around you and it becomes an excellent and comforting way to deal with the stress of the holidays.

A friend of mine makes this regularly throughout the winter and was kind enough to share her recipe with me.

You can make this in a crock pot on low or on the stove. Do NOT let this boil!

Here is what you need

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1 bottle of good red wine

1/4 cup Candied ginger

3 Cinnamon sticks

2 Clementines peeled and chopped

1 teaspoon Allspice berries

1 teaspoon Cloves

1/2 cup of granulated sugar

Wrap the cinnamon sticks, cloves, allspice in cheesecloth.

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Put it in your pot with the sugar and chopped up clementine.

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Add the entire bottle of wine

Fill the empty wine bottle with water and add to your mixture.

Let simmer for 2-3 hours

You don’t have to use the best wine you can find, just find one that tastes good and has a mild and fruity flavour. I found this bottle of Cupcake wine from California for $10. It was delicious!

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For an extra bit of “fortification” add an ounce of Grand Marnier to the bottom of your glass. This not only amps up the alcohol content but it also adds an extra burst of flavour.

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Top up the glass with the mulled wine and enjoy!

 

 

 

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Brie and Jam Appetizer

appetizer pic

Last Saturday we had plans to go to a friend’s house for dinner.

We were asked to bring an appetizer.

The days leading up to Saturday were chaotic at best. We had just gotten home from Quebec, I had dozens of cookies to make and ice and work was quite busy.

I didn’t have the time or brain power to make anything complicated

So I came up with this gem using Provisions fruit pastes. I mentioned Provisions Food Company as one of my favourite things in a previous post.

It is so simple and quick. It took only 10 minutes to make 2 dozen of these little bits of heaven

You only need 4 ingredients

Phyllo pastry

Brie

Fruit paste or jam

Melted butter

Heat your oven to 375 degrees

Using a pastry brush cover one sheet of phyllo in butter

Cover your remaining phyllo with a damp cloth. Phyllo dries out very quickly and will become flaky and impossible to work with.

Take a second sheet of phyllo and lay it on top of the first sheet. The butter helps the sheets stick together and helps to add flakiness.

Using a paring knife cut the phyllo into 6 slices

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Put a piece of brie and a teaspoon of fruit paste on the end of each slice

Take one corner and fold it up towards the other side to make a triangle

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Repeat until you get to the end of the phyllo

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Cover in melted butter and make for 5-7 minutes or until they are golden brown

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Word of warning… let these cool off for a few minutes before you dive into them. They are hot!!!

Not bad for only a few minutes of work.

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If you need a quick, easy and inexpensive app to bring to a holiday party I think this one hits the mark.

Apple Cinnamon Sugar Donuts

donuts

My poor little Callum has been sick with a cold for the last two days.

He stayed home from school and instead of staying in bed he asked if we could make a treat.

Who am I to say no to that kind of request?

My mom gave me donut pans for my birthday so we decided to give donut making a try.

It was a cold and snowy day and apple cinnamon donuts with a nice cup of tea might make everyone feel warm and cosy and Callum thought they would definitely cure his cold.

Apple Cinnamon Sugar Donuts

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups of all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 eggs

2/3 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup grated apple ( I used two gala apples)

1/4 cup butter milk (I didn’t have any so I used 1/4 teaspoon vinegar and 1% milk, let sit for 5 minutes and voila you have buttermilk)

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

3/4 teaspoon vanilla

Pre heat oven to 350 degrees

Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt

In a separate bowl combine the eggs, sugar, apple, buttermilk, oil and vanilla

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Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until combined

Spray your donut pans with cooking spray

You can spoon your batter into the tray but I prefer to use a piping bag. It makes things so much easier

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Bake for 10-12 minutes

Refrigerate any left over batter

Let cool in pan for a few minutes

Turn out onto a cooling rack and cool completely

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Now it is time for the cinnamon sugar

I doubled up two brown paper bags and poured in 1/2 cup of sugar and 2 tablespoons of cinnamon. Give it a good shake to combine.

Using a pastry brush coat the donuts with melted butter

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Put the donuts into the bag and shake until the donuts are totally coated in the sugar mixture

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These are so delicious!

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Callum had a blast making them and eating them

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I figured I would throw in this random picture of Callum sniffing the vanilla. It is just so cute!

This recipe made 12 large and 12 mini donuts. I am pretty sure they won’t last too long!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pannekoeken- Apple Pie Pancake

It feels like forever since I have written but it has only been a week. After all the madness that is Halloween we decided to take some time off and head up to the cottage.

Despite the rain and cold weather we had a great time. There is just something about that place that makes everyone incredibly happy.

The kids got along really well. Not a single fight or grumpy word, just lots of cuddles and laughter.

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Chris and I were so relaxed. At night we sat by the fire sipping red wine and in the morning we sat by the fire and read while drinking tea. It doesn’t get any better.

Then we came home

Reality hit hard. As soon as we walked through the door I immediately felt tired and stressed. See ya later post vacation glow.

We found ourselves in the same old routine. The kids go to bed and we become fixtures on the couch watching the Food Network.

I am not a huge fan of Diners Drive Ins and Dives, mainly because I get super hungry while watching the show. This time was no exception.

I was starting the drift off when a segment started about a German dish called Pannekoeken. It sounded like an apple pie pancake. I knew immediately that I was going to make it for breakfast the next morning.

I am going to apologize now for the picture quality. It was early in the morning and I hadn’t eaten yet.

pancake

 

Ingredients

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 Granny smith apple, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons cold butter
  • Powdered sugar, for serving
  • Whipped cream, for serving

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Add the cinnamon, nutmeg and apples to a pan. Saute the apples over medium-low heat until slightly soft, 3 to 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the batter. Mix the milk, vanilla and eggs in a bowl. Add the flour, granulated sugar and salt and whisk lightly (some lumps are ok but not too many).

Increase the heat under the apples to medium and add the brown sugar and butter. Cook until a syrup forms, about 3 minutes, then add the batter all at once to the center of the pan. Swirl the apple syrup mix through the batter, using a heatproof spatula, to form ribbons (you do not want to fully combine the apple-sugar syrup into the batter). Cook until small bubbles form around the edge.

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Finish cooking the pannekoeken in the oven, 12 minutes.

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To serve, invert a 12-inch plate over the pan and flip the pan to turn out the pannekoeken. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, top with whipped cream and enjoy!

Halloween Cookie Pops

cookie pops

I usually make sugar cookies for my kids to take to school on Halloween but this year I am just not feeling it. Decorating sugar cookies is incredibly time consuming and I needed something quick and easy to make that still looked yummy and cute.

I thought about making cake pops but then I remembered that I attempted to make them in the summer for Sofie’s birthday party. While they tasted great they were not aesthetically pleasing. I may have also gotten incredibly angry during the making of said cake pops. The memory of that nightmare is still too fresh so I decided to pass on trying to make them again.

While on Pinterest I spied some cookie pops. Now that I can do. All you need is some Oreo cookies, lollipop sticks, candy melts and some sprinkles. Easy peasy lemon squeezy as Sofie would say.

Halloween Cookie Pops

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Melt your candy melts. I melt mine in the microwave in 20 second intervals.

Take your lollipop stick and push it into the side of a cookie

Dip the end of the stick into the candy melts and put it back into the hole in the cookie. Let this harden for a few minutes before you dip your cookie.

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Dip your cookie into the candy melts. Let the excess drip off.

Immediately cover with sprinkles.

I cover a cookie sheet in sprinkles and press the cookie into the sprinkles. I find it easier and not as messy.

Let them dry for a few hours or over night

Package in little bags and tie with a cute ribbon

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I made 60 of these in 2 hours and that includes packaging them. Sugar cookies would have taken me 6 hours to bake and decorate, and it took me over an hour to make 16 cake pops in the summer. I will definitely be doing these again. They are quick, easy and tasty.

A perfect little snack that the kids can give to all their friends.

Happy Halloween!