I’ll admit, I’m not the greatest ever baker – but I can make things look cute. So, in the spirit of the holiday season, I created these lovable snowmen cupcakes (which were actually delicious). Being a slightly handicapped baker, I teamed up with Ina Garten, whose Barefoot Contessa mixes are fabulous. Seriously – you can’t go wrong with them. I used the mix for coconut cupcakes, since I used shavings to emulate snow, but you can whip up any sort of batter you’d like.
For the snowmen, you’ll need:
Orange Slice Candies
Chocolate Candies (optional)
Toothpick (or a wooden kabob stick – I was desperate)
A Witness to Observe Your Greatness (hence boyfriend’s cat)
The Christmas months are all about traditional things like caroling and decorating and, of course, certain seasonal tastes. You know, like creamy striped peppermints and soft fruit cakes and sugar-coated rum balls. But that’s here in the U.S. In other parts of the world, such desserts don’t even make an appearance on holiday menus. That’s because they have traditional tastes all of their own – some that go back nearly a century.
Buon Natale! This sweet loaf is not only a symbol of Christmas in Italy but one of Milan, where it originated from. It’s made by first curing the dough then adding in candied fruits, raisins, and sometimes mascarpone or amaretto. How traditional is it? Oh, it appears to be ancient. There’s evidence that panettone was made during the Roman Empire with a mixture including sticky honey for sweetness.
What: Bûche de Noël
Literally, “bûche de Noël” means Yule log, which is no surprise given the look of this sweet roulade. Made from génoise or other sponge cake that is frosted, rolled into a cylinder, and frosted again with a thick layer of chocolate confection. To create the realistic bark, Francophones drag a fork over the exterior frosting and dust it with powdered sugar, creating snow. It’s often served with tree branches, fresh berries, and mushroom-shaped meringue.
Hey, the holidays can be hectic. No matter how great you are at planning meals, organizing, and cooking, Thanksgiving may not always run smoothly. There are variables: unexpected guests, things taking longer to make than stated in the cookbook, and the lack of key ingredients you forgot to buy. (We’ve all been there.) That’s why we’re head over heels for these mini cheesecakes that are inspired by this recipe. It’s super easy, unbelievably delicious, and makes 24 adorable desserts in a grand total of 40 minutes.
Sure, veganism has become very popular recently, but it doesn’t at all resemble those fad diets that are adiosed after a week. Veganism has actually been around since (are you sitting down?) 500 BCE, traced back to a Greek philosopher, Pythagoras. Back in the day, Pythagoras was kind of a lone wolf, but today, vegans account for .5% of the American population. Okay, that may seem like a staggeringly small number, but it actually equates to well over a million people. So it’s come a long way.
No matter how old it is, it doesn’t make the diet any easier to follow. There are animal products in SO many things – especially desserts. But that doesn’t mean that a vegan diet can’t include them (desserts, that is). A cheesecake that doesn’t actually use cheese? Yep, we did it. In celebration of the recent holiday, we’ve created a recipe that allows America’s favorite dessert to be enjoyed, even by vegans.
Here’s what you need:
2 eight-ounce containers of vegan cream cheese
2/3 cup of sugar
4 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice
¼ cup of water
1 tablespoons of extra firm tofu (drained)
6 graham crackers
4 tablespoons of vegan margarine or butter
Simple enough, right?