Tag Archives: Christmas

Dark Chocolate Buche de Noel

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This post is thanks to leftovers (because technically, I should be making supper right now, but HALLELUJAH – I HAVE LEFTOVERS!  And good ones at that!), and someone who told me today she’d been reading my blog.  That does wonders for my motivation.  So does chocolate.  Dark Chocolate Christmas Logs.  In the summer.  It is only 6 months till Christmas, by the way.  You can hit me now.  I’ve been singing Christmas carols since May.  Man.  I think something may be wrong with me.  Help!

Dark Chocolate Buche de Noel

{The final product.  So good.  Seriously.}

So, I made this one ages ago, and it was sooo good.  But I have this lazy gene, and it prohibited me to take the time to write out the whole recipe…  But I’ve decided to fight that nasty gene and just do it.  It’s totally worth it.  And before you say, “Hey Kayleigh, this looks like a lot of work… I don’t have time!”, let me just tell you that yes, you DO indeed have time for this particular recipe.  Even if you don’t, you’ll find time, make time even.  Add an extra hour to your already full 24-hr day.  Do it.  Who needs sleep?  (That’s what always gets put on the back burner for me.)  This log of chocolate goodness is just yelling to be made, and more importantly, eaten.  I think I made it for Thanksgiving last year (told you it was ages ago!  Wow!), and it was enjoyed by all who ate it.  Like, more than enjoyed.  There were lots of sighs and grunts of pleasureful eating.  I might even be making up words here.  How about, plenjoyfeating (pleasure-enjoy-ful-eating)?  I think that about describes it.  Of course, if you don’t like chocolate, you may not like this (and I might not like YOU!).  Really though, I’d still like you.  I’d just wonder what part of your brain wasn’t working quite right, and if that affected any other likings to awesome food-things.

There are a lot of different steps to this recipe.  Don’t let that scare you away.  Just don’t.

Roll her up!

{Make the jelly roll cake, roll it up in a dish towel so it doesn’t crack after you fill it!}

Okay, now I’ll type out that recipe.  Please make this.  If you don’t, please call me.  I’ll make it.  You’ll come over.  We’ll plenjoyfeat it together.  Pretty please with a dark chocolate covered strawberry on top.  (I’ll take any excuse to make a dessert, really.)

Chocolate crackle.  YUM!

{Melt chocolate.  Cool it.  Crackle it!  Soooo much chocolate!}

Dark Chocolate Buche de Noel

Slightly adapted from Canadian Living Holiday Favourites 2011

Cake:

1/4 cup milk

2 Tbsp butter

3/4 cup flour

1 tsp baking powder

pinch salt

5 eggs

3/4 cup sugar

1 Tbsp icing sugar

Place milk and butter in a bowl, and microwave until butter is melted.  Stir, keep warm.  In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt, set aside.  Separate 3 eggs, dropping yolks and white into separate bowls.  Beat egg whites until foamy; beat in 1/4 cup sugar, about 1 Tbsp at a time, until soft peaks form.  Beat together egg yolks and remaining eggs and sugar until pale and thick enough that batter leaves ribbons on surface when beaters are lifted, about 5 minutes.  Fold in egg whites.  Add flour, fold until combined.  Pour in milk mixture, fold in until blended.  Spread in 15×10-inch parchment paper-lined, rimmed baking sheet.  Bake in 350F oven until golden and cake springs back when lightly touched, about 12 minutes.  Loosen edges with knife, and flip onto a flour-covered dish towel.  Carefully peel off paper, and roll cake, starting from the short side.  Let cool on rack.

Frosting coated!

{Make chocolate frosting and coat the cake.  So much goodness.  Don’t be perfect.  Nobody will notice that you put most of the frosting on the end that you’re going to eat…}

Icing:

1 cup margarine, softened

1/3 cup whipping cream

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

2 cups icing sugar

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate, melted, and cooled

In a bowl, beat butter, slowly adding whipping cream, and vanilla.  Beat in icing sugar, 1 cup at a time.  Beat in chocolate until fluffy.

Roll it up!

{Roll it up!  It should be super easy if you rolled it up in a dishtowel earlier}

Chocolate Bark Crackle:

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate

Melt chocolate in a double-boiler, or in the microwave, stirring occasionally.  Pour into 15×10-inch parchment paper-lined baking sheet.  Refrigerate for 10 minutes.  Break or tear chocolate into pieces.  Arrange on a tray, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm.

Add some more CHOCOLATE

{Add some more chocolate.  Why not?  You need something to stick that crackle to anyhow…}

Unroll the cake, spread with 1 1/2 cups icing.  Re-roll without towel, and place (seam down) on a serving dish.  Cover with remaining icing.  Stick chocolate crackle to the icing.  Sprinkle with icing sugar.  Refrigerate until cold.  Voila!  C’est ca!

Who else is enjoying this Maritime summer weather?  A week of gorgeous sunny, warm weather, followed by a week of dreary, cold, gray days.  Oh well.  At least it’s not all dreary.  Last week, me and my sidekick had breakfast, coffee and bubbles on the doorstep, while Daddy and Jude slept in.

Coffee and nectarines on the doorstep

I hope these days never end.  Spending time like that with my kids is amazing.  I’m super thankful that I can take the time to do that.  God pours his blessings down in so many different ways.  Amazing.  And time just goes by so fast, it’s insane.  Thanks for those long summer days.

Mommy and super boy!

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Cookie Balls!

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Hey, hope everyone has had a great January thus far.  2012 is flying by already.  My little guy is 6 months old today!  When people tell you that kids grow up fast, you nod, agree with them, but only half believe them.  Until…  your baby is born, then screaming, then laughing and smiling, then rolling, then eating solids, then cutting teeth…  and soon crawling, and now 6 months old!  It really does jet past.  My advice to others (and myself included), set down the laundry, stop doing the dishes, and spend time with your kids.  The dishes and laundry will always be there and never change, kids are different.  Enjoy them.  Every moment.  They’ll remember you spending time with them too.  Don’t get me wrong, you do need to get those things done, but in time.  It doesn’t always have to be done right away.

Our first family Christmas photo with our baby.

Okay, so I’m really proud of myself right now.  Second post in under a month.  Must be a record for me.  We went out this afternoon for lunch, it was awesome.  If you’re ever in NS, Canada, check out the Kiwi Cafe.  It’s sweet.

Today, I’ll fulfill my promise of sharing my cookie dough ball recipes with you.  I made these for a cookie exchange (one of two in two days… haha) over Christmas, and they were really great.  Sad thing was, I didn’t make extra for myself, and only got to sample half of each.  Guess it helped with my holiday weight gain that way…  sigh.  Oh well.  Next year, we’re making a triple batch!  😉  I made two different recipes for this exchange.  Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls, and Cranberry White Chocolate Skor Cookie Dough Balls (or CWCSCDB for… short?  Haha.).  Just a note – these recipes are especially for my friend Amanda, who tried these and loved them (I love hearing people enjoy food I make…!).

Don’t they look great?  Good enough to eat?

The chocolate chip balls were an idea I found on Pinterest, and adapted slightly to my own liking.  The other recipe was adapted from a cookie recipe given to me by a friend (they were actually supposed to be made into cookies for ice cream sandwiches, which I intend to try sometime!).

So!  First off, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls!

Makes approx 3-4 dozen.

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp baking soda

1 cup margarine, room temperature

3/4 cup white sugar

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla

1/3 cup milk

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (or mini chips)

Coating:  1 pkg chocolate chips and 1/4 cup Parofin Wax.

Beat margarine and sugars in a large bowl with electric mixer of medium speed until light and fluffy.  Add milk and vanilla.  Stir in flour, baking soda, oats and salt and mix on low-speed (or stir by hand) until incorporated.  Stir in chocolate chips.  Form dough into 1″ balls and arrange on a baking sheet lined with waxed paper.  Melt chocolate and wax in a double boiler.  Using spoon, dip cookie balls into chocolate coating to cover.  Tap on side of pan to remove any excess coating, and return to waxed paper-lined baking sheets.  Chill until set.

AND NOW, for the amazing Cranberry White Chocolate Skor Cookie Dough Balls.

Makes about 2 1/2 dozen.

1 cup shortening, room temperature

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup sugar

3/4 cup milk

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup oats

2 cups flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 pkg white chocolate chips

1/2 cup Skor toffee bits

1 cup dried cranberries

Coating:  1/2 pkg white chocolate chips and 1/4 cup Parofin Wax

Beat butter, and sugars in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy.  Add milk and vanilla.  Stir in flour, baking soda, oats and salt and mix on low-speed (or stir by hand) until incorporated.  Stir in chips, Skor bits, and cranberries.  Form dough into 1″ balls and arrange on a baking sheet lined with waxed paper.  Melt chocolate and wax in a double boiler.  Using spoon, dip cookie balls into chocolate coating to cover.  Tap on side of pan to remove any excess coating, and return to waxed paper-lined baking sheets.  Chill until set.

They look good, inside and out.

So, I think these turned out wonderfully.

I stuck the recipes on them too.  

At the cookie exchange, there was a prize for the best packaging.  I had seen in a magazine a few ideas for food gifts.  One of them was to use an egg carton and scrapbooking paper.  I tried it – and it looked really neat.  It’s a great idea recycling-wise, and it won the prize too!  🙂  All you had to do was cut a strip of paper the size of the top of the carton (the part that lifts) and then cut out the holes where it closes, and glue it on.I put my cookie balls in the carton in small paper cups and then wrapped the carton with raffia and stuck in a sprig of a decoration thing that we’d picked up.

Hope you enjoyed the recipe.

Did anyone else try anything new this holiday season?  Have you guys discovered Pinterest yet?  

Finally… Christmas.

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And I am ever still the worst blogger ever.  Christmas in almost a month past (as is my last post), and I have yet to write about it.  Sorry.  A million times, sorry.

It was our little boy’s first Christmas this year.  He was 5 months old.  It was really sweet.  He was spoiled to death, but it was really great.

Cael really enjoyed the icing we were using to decorate the gingerbread house.  Isn’t he especially cute in his ‘First Christ-Moose’ suit?

So!  Christmas was great.  It was really busy.  I really enjoyed having my friends come home (especially those that are FAR away).  It was really awesome to spend time with them, and catch up.  I can’t wait until that happens again.  Thing is, soon enough, they’re all going to get married and will probably stop coming to visit me so often… I’m hoping that doesn’t happen (I WANT them to get married, but they need to keep visiting…!!).  Anyways, enough with that.  Time with family was great too.  We just took our Christmas tree out on Saturday actually.  It was really nice to have it up for a while afterwards.  It was getting pretty dry though.  It left most of its needles on our living room floor on its way out the door.  So now, the house is in more order (if that’s possible in a house of 9?).  We ate so much food through the season.  Multiple turkey dinners, lots of sweets, it was great.

Me and my beautiful cousin Allie at our family Christmas Eve supper.

Our Christmas morning is always my favourite part.  We get up around 7 (I’m in charge of getting my brothers up on time, and keeping them quiet as to not wake up my husband).  Then we go downstairs and go through our stockings – which are massive.  They are at least 3 feet long.  My mother made them when I was about 10, and I just made 3 for my own little family.  They’re really great though.  My all-time favourite.  We then get dressed up, and have a good old-fashioned breakfast of homemade brown bread, fried baloney, and eggs – SO good.  After that, we read the Christmas story.  We read it out of a picture book, and then the account from Luke 2.  Read it.  We read it before we open our gifts as a reminder as to what we’re actually celebrating.  Not presents, not family; we’re celebrating the miraculous birth of our One and Only Saviour.  He is why we celebrate.  We read the story, and then we pray and thank God for the best gift of all. Only after that do we start opening presents.  This year, we had church in the morning (as Christmas was on Sunday), so only a few presents got opened before church.  Then we have multiple turkey dinners, go to grandparents, etc…  This year, we didn’t get our presents all opened until 10:30!  PM!

Our first turkey dinner of the week.  

I did so much baking in preparation for Christmas.  It was AMAZING.  I love to bake.  I.  Love.  Baking.  Except, I need people to eat all the lovely baked goods so they don’t go to waste.  At Christmastime, I have people to eat my baked goods.  It is wonderful.  I attended two cookie exchanges (actually the first two I’d ever been to…), and I loved them.  I will share a few recipes from those REALLY soon.  One of them is Cranberry White Chocolate Skor Cookie Dough Balls.  (Yum.)

In all, it was really great.  Loved it.

How was your Christmas?  What do you do special to celebrate? 

Sorry!

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Hey everyone. I just wanted to apologize for being the worst blogger EV-er.  I can’t believe it’s been so long since I posted.  I’m going to blame it on the craziness of life – being a mother of a 4 month old, living in a house of 9, and writing exams (not to mention getting ready for Christmas and the umpteenth things that go along with that!).  The good news however, is that in the time since my last post, I’ve baked about a zillion things, and can’t wait to share those with you!

I hope everyone is in the Christmas spirit – I’ve had Christmas music playing since November 2nd!  (Hey – it’s great music, and we only get to listen to it for a short period of time in the year!)  Presents are being bought, trees are taking over the house, decorations and baking galore, add in Christmas crafts, and you’re all set!  Well, except for one thing…  A HuGe thing actually.  His name is Jesus, and without Him, we’d never even celebrate Christmas.  It is a great time of family and friends, music and laughter and presents, but the reason I celebrate Christmas is a little boy (much like my own), who was born this day.   Look is up – Luke 2.  It’s the greatest story ever, and will change your life for sure.

My parent’s have a really high ceiling in one room, so we put up a 12 foot tree every year.  It’s really great, we get some family friends over and make a whole evening out of it.

Isn’t she the cutest?  She’s about halfway up, working from the bottom up as you can see.  🙂

We also have a “kid tree”.  The kids get to string popcorn and cranberries for a garland, and all the hand-crafted-by-the-kids-in-elementary ornaments, along with any other “kid” ornaments go on that tree.  It really is a lot of fun.

A new baking experience and recipe will be on its way VERY soon – I promise (but will not be held to it….  I’ll try my best!).  Need a new Christmas cookie recipe?  Check out these chocolate cookies.

Does anyone have any awesome tree decorating ideas or traditions?