CHRISTMAS IS COMING!!! Christmas is always my favorite time of the year, I love everything, the lovely songs, the gifts, the colors and the joy that I will share with my family and friends. And a little secret from me: I still believe in Santa Claus. Actually I stopped writing letters to him the past 2 years, but every year I pretend to sleep just to see him once ^^
Anyway, I hope all of you have prepared already for your Christmas. Finding new recipes, baking some cookies as a yummy, delicious and meaningful gifts or decorating the house with your kids may be a good idea xD Enjoy these beautiful moments as much as you can :)
Today, I wanna introduce to all of you some amazing ideas for Christmas recipes and decorations, so just have fun realizing them :D
1. Santa Claus hat Brownies
(Source: Daisy’s world)
1 pan of your favorite brownies, cooled and cut into desired size and shape (using a round cutter)
12-16 small strawberries, cleaned and hulled
Vanilla-mascarpone buttercream (recipe below)
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
8 ounces mascarpone cheese, room temperature
2-1/2 to 3 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat butter and mascarpone cheese until light and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add vanilla extract and salt. Add 2-1/2 cups of sugar, half a cup at a time and continue beating until smooth. Add more sugar, if needed to reach desired consistency and sweetness.
To assemble, pipe a ring of vanilla buttercream on top of each brownie. Cut off the base of a strawberry so it is flat and place it upside down on each brownie, pushing slightly to secure in place. Top the tip of the strawberry with a dot of buttercream to finish the santa hat.
2. Santa Claus Cookies
(Source: Vanilla Bean Baker)
Decorate the cookies using piping icing with different colors to make your cookies more appealing and Christmas-inspiring ^^
3. Popcorn Snowmen
15 cups popped popcorn
1 stick of butter or margarine
Two 10 oz. packages marshmallows
1/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
Gumdrops or red hots
- Put the popcorn in your largest mixing bowl and set aside. Melt the butter or margarine in a nonstick saucepan over medium-low heat. Add all the marshmallows to the pan, stirring continually with a wooden spoon until they’re completely melted. Pour the mixture over the popcorn and stir to coat evenly. As soon as the marshmallow is cool enough to touch, rub a little butter or margarine in your hands and make popcorn balls (about 1 cup of popcorn per ball).
- Build and decorate your snowmen on sheets of waxed paper. For each one, stack three popcorn balls atop each other. Push pretzel-stick arms into the sides of the middle popcorn ball. Add raisins for eyes and a candy corn for a nose. Arrange a row of mini jawbreakers into a broad grin. For buttons on the snowman’s chest, use gumdrops or red hots.
- If your popcorn balls aren’t sticky enough to hold the decorations, mix up a small batch of stiff white icing by adding water, a few drops at a time, to 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar and stirring until smooth. Use this to glue the candy in place. For snowmen’s scarves, cut rectangles out of fruit leather and fringe the ends. Makes 5 snowmen.
4. Jelly Bean Christmas Trees
1 dozen 12-inch plastic decorating pastry bags (available at party supply stores)
4 cups green jelly beans
1 cup total yellow, white, and red jelly beans
12 brown pipe cleaners
Place a few yellow jelly beans in the tip of the plastic decorating bag. Then carefully pour about 1/3 cup of green jelly beans into the bag.
For lights and ornaments, you can mix the green jelly beans with yellow, white, and red. For the tree’s trunk, tape the bag shut and twist a brown pipe cleaner around the base. Trim off the excess plastic. (Note: in the top photograph, the trees are held upright with fishing line.)
Makes 12 trees.
5. Chocolate Cherry Mice
24 maraschino cherries with stems
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
24 milk chocolate Hershey’s Kisses, unwrapped
48 almond slices
- The icing:
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- Black paste food coloring
- Red food coloring
- 3 plastic sandwich bags
- Drain the cherries and pat them dry with paper towels. Line a cookie sheet with waxed paper.
- Place the chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl and heat them until smooth, working in 15-second intervals, stirring between each.
- Holding a cherry by its stem, dip it into the chocolate and swirl it around to completely cover the fruit. Set it on its side on the waxed paper and immediately press a Hershey’s Kiss onto the cherry for the head. For the ears, gently wedge two almond slices between the Kiss and the cherry. Repeat to make 24 mice.
- Make a thick icing by mixing 1 cup of confectioners’ sugar with a teaspoon of water. If the mixture is too dry, stir in more water, a few drops at a time, until you have a thick, smooth icing. Divide the icing among three small bowls.
- Tint one bowl of icing black and one pink. Spoon each of the three icings into a plastic bag and snip a tiny corner from each. Pipe white eye dots on the mice, then refrigerate them until set, about 10 minutes. Add black pupils and pink noses. Keep the mice in the fridge until you’re ready to serve them or give them away.
Hope all of you liked these recipes and will enjoy making them for your family in this Christmas time. If you want more cookies recipes, you can click HERE to check out my post about them, a dozen of recipes with several choices and flavors xoxo
<3 Trang Quynh