Seahawks Vodka Jello Shots

Seahawks Vodka Jello Shots

I’m not really quite sure what it is about Jello shots that’s so darn appealing, but there is something undeniably awesome about the tasty marriage of gelatin and alcohol.  When anyone ever says jello shots, my ears automatically perk up and I’m instantly thinking PARTAY!  They’re so festive and fun, and really not something most people go to the trouble to make everyday so naturally they deserve a place on your Super Bowl menu.

Last year when the Seahawks were making their first run at the Super Bowl, I made these and posted a photo of them to my Flickr and Pinterest accounts but did not blog about them. One year later and that little photo has received around 1,000 pins on Pinterest. I took that as a sign that I needed to remake and repost the photos along with a recipe. So, here we are at the beginning of a week of pre-Super Bowl prep and you now have plenty of time to get the supplies and get crackin. If you so happen to be rooting for that other team, you can definitely mix up the colors appropriately.

Seahawks Vodka Jello Shots 2

I’m not going to pretend these jello shots are anything new, unusual or fancy. They are simply made of jello, unflavored gelatin and sweetened condensed milk, all spiked with some really great vodka. We are lucky enough around here to have so many local small batch distillers making really amazing spirits, so I couldn’t resist putting some 12 Vodka from White River Distillers in the shots just to stay in keeping with the whole 12th Man, Seahawks theme. You can use really whatever vodka you like, Whipped Cream vodka is my next favorite go to, but I don’t really think you need to spend too much on whatever spirit you end up using as you are going to be bastardizing it anyway by adding the jello and sweetened condensed milk. The 12 Vodka is a premium brand and I did feel a bit guilty adding it to the Jello, but I figured what the heck, it’ll taste amazing. And it does.

It’s pretty safe to say that these pack a very serious punch. Be really judicious in your consumption of them, and make sure they stay out of the hands of the kiddos. They are like magnets for anyone under age. I would even suggest making a non-alcoholic variety in different cups so if you have kids or are going to party where they’ll be present they can enjoy their own alcohol free versionas well. Believe me, they are going to want to have some and it would be very bad if they decided to flout the rules and help themselves. Not good.  Stepping down off the soap box now.

Seahawks Vodka Jello Shots 3

I love to make these in these pretty little dessert glasses, but really they are equally good in just about any little cup or glass you’ve got around.  You can even make them in an 8″x8″ pan and cut them into squares if you’d rather not go to all the fiddly trouble of using glasses. If you do that make sure your squares stay on the smallish side, for obvious reasons. My husband is not usually one to go in for sweets or even much hard alcohol, but even he is a fan of these.. Seriously one of these bad boys will do you. Particularly if you’re consuming them on an empty stomach. At 10 am, lets say while you’re taste testing or something like that.

I’ll be back tomorrow with some more alcyholly goodness, I’ve got a couple fun drinks to share with you, all keeping within the Seahawks party theme so be sure to come on back and check out whats the what.

  • Seahawks Jello Shots
24 small cups


Servings: small cups


  1. Prepare the blue layer first: In a microwave proof bowl heat one cup of the water until boiling approximately 3 minutes or so. Sprinkle the blue jello over the top, and stir until dissolved. Add the food coloring and stir until combined. Stir in 1 C. of the vodka. Pour into small cups, evenly. Place on a rimmed baking sheet and freeze for 15-20 minutes. Prepare middle layer while first is setting.
  2. For the white layer: Pour 1/2 cup of the water in to a medium sized bowl. Sprinkle the 2 pkgs of unflavored gelatin over the top and let dissolve. Meanwhile heat 1/2 c. of the water and 1/2 C. of the vodka in the microwave for 2 minutes or just under a boil. Pour into the unflavored gelatin mixture and stir until dissolved. Add the sweetened condensed milk and stir again. Remove the cups from the freezer and pour the second layer over the top, evenly. Return to the freezer and freeze for 30 minutes. Prepare the green layer while it freezes.
  3. For the green layer: Heat the remaining cup of water in the microwave for 3 minutes. Add the lime jello, stir until dissolved, then add the food coloring. Add the remaining 1 C. vodka, stir thoroughly. Remove the cups from the freezer, pour the green layer over the middle, evenly then return to the freezer for 15-20 minutes.
  4. Remove from the freezer and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Serve with whipped cream, berries and mint.

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This post is unsponsored. White River Distillers did not pay me for this post, I just really love their juice.

Seahawks Sprinkle Doughnuts AKA Cardamom Spice Baked Doughnuts

Cardamom Spice Baked Doughnuts

I hope that you’ll forgive me for going regional on you all today. I try to keep this blog a bit more friendly to viewers from all locales, but I simply cannot pass up this time and opportunity to share my true feelings and allegiance, to the Seattle Seahawks!!  I’m a life long Seattleite, (one of the few left, I think sometimes :) ) and a lifelong Seahawks fan so I feel absolutely compelled to share with you some fun easy recipes that you can make in preparation for your Super Bowl celebrations. If you’re into that kind a thing.

We are again going to the Super Bowl this year and while I feel for our Green Bay fans, (truly, I completely respect and admire them, in fact if I wasn’t a die hard Seattle fan I definitely, definitely would be a Packers fan) I am completely and utterly beside myself with ridiculous excitement. It’s safe to say the rest of Seattle is too.

Cardamom Spice Baked Doughnuts 2

I thought I’d take the time over the course of the next week and a half to share with you some easy to prepare, completely fun party food that you can make in preparation for your big shindig, or just share with your friends to get you all in the spirit on a Friday or Saturday night.  They’ll be a few sweet things, a couple kickin cocktails and possibly an appetizer or two to get things rolling.

Cardamom Spice Baked Doughnuts 3

These little lovelies are just so good and honestly the only thing that makes them “Seahawks” is of course their sprinkles so decorate exactly however you feel or whatever your persuasion. They are a rich, eggy doughnut that has the least baked flavor of a baked doughnut I’ve ever had. If you are at all like me, I simply cannot go through the whole rigamarole of frying doughnuts whenever I want one. Baked are so much easier, and not to mention nearly AS bad for you.

These would be a fantastic treat to bring to work on Blue Friday (our regional spirit day, basically), or as dessert for friends or of course for sharing on the big day. They also make a really delicious all though unadvised breakfast. I may or may not have eaten one while I was walking on the treadmill the other day.

Cardamom Spice Baked Doughnuts 4

See those glorious little flecks of cardamom goodness up there? That’s what you get when you grind your own cardamom. That and some really amazing flavor. Store bought pre-ground stuff just won’t do here. Go to the Indian market, by a bag of the already husked cardamom, get a little mortar and pestle and get crackin.  You’ll be so glad you did and your kitchen will smell aaahmaaazzzing. Oh and as our fearless and amazing quarterback Russell Wilson says at the end of every interview,  GO HAWKS!!

Cardamom Spice Baked Doughnuts 5

Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour

  • Cardamom Spice Baked Doughnuts
12 doughnuts


Servings: doughnuts


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly oil 2 doughnut pans and set aside. In a small bowl, sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, nutmeg, salt and cardamom. Set aside.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the yogurt, eggs, cooled melted butter and water. Gradually add the dry ingredients and whisk until thoroughly combined.
  3. Fill each doughnut well 1/2 full. I have a batter wand for this purpose and it works very well. Bake 10-12 minutes until golden. Remove from oven, cool on a cooling rack then frost.
  1. Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl with a whisk. Dip each doughnut in the frosting, place on a cooling rack placed over a parchment lined baking sheet. Garnish with sprinkles, let dry.

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Icelandic Brown Bread

Icelandic Brown Bread 7

Happy January Friends! After a much needed and very long break from blogging, I’m back today to share with you this delicious and easy recipe for one of my favorite breads. I’m not one that’s necessarily big on resolutions at the New Year but oftentimes it just makes sense to pull back a bit from the sugar in January, refocus my eating on more whole grains, and generally try to clean up my diet.

I like to focus my eating more along the guidelines of the New Nordic Diet, but I don’t necessarily follow any prescribed “diet plan” I just like to incorporate some if it’s elements in my everyday meals.  The New Nordic Diet, is not really “new”.  It’s been around since 2004 and was developed by several famous Nordic chefs (one of whom, Renee Redzepi of Noma) and focuses primarily on consuming, cruciferous and root vegetables, berries, locally sourced seafood and whole and varied grains. Pretty simple right? Simple, delicious and really a recipe for overall better health. If you’re interested in finding out more about The New Nordic Diet, head HERE for a brief run down.

Icelandic Brown Bread 8

Intrigued and want to know even more?  Check out some the delicious recipes and ways to include The New Nordic Diet into your life by picking up Trina Hahnemann’s The Nordic Diet. Beautifully written and chock full of recipes that are simple and delicious.

Now for the bread. One really easy way to incorporate more whole and healthy grains in your life is to rightfully make your own bread. Scandinavians have their fair share of bread recipes that take more time than the average person would like to spend making them, but you don’t have to spend hours toiling in the kitchen to still get the benefits of homemade, whole grain bread.

Icelandic Brown Bread 9

This recipe, an adaptation of Beatrice Ojakangas, Icelandic Three Grain Brown Bread is basically a quick soda bread that you can literally throw together in the same time it would take you to make a batch of cookies. A trademark of good Scandinavian bread is usually the presence of oats, seeds and sometimes nuts, so I make sure to add a generous amount of additional whole oats, and a sprinkling of seeds to the top of each loaf I make. It keeps remarkably well and tastes ridiculously good toasted with mashed avocado, or my personal favorite, a big smear of dill mustard and piled high with gravlax.

I must also,absolutely recommend, the thorough and exhaustive, The Great Scandinavian Baking Book, by Beatrice Ojakangas. There you’ll find a whole host of delicious Scandinavian recipes from the healthy to the not so much. Beatrice has been baking New Nordic since before it was a thing.

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  • Icelandic Brown Bread
Servings Prep Time Cook Time
1 loaf 10 minutes 60 minutes


Servings: loaf


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9"x5" loaf pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a mixer, cream the butter and the brown sugar together. In a separate bowl, sift the flours and the remaining dry ingredients together, excepting the anise seed and the mixture for the topping.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the mixing bowl and turn the mixer on low. Add the anise seed, then slowly pour in the buttermilk until the ingredients are wet. Avoid over mixing.
  4. Carefully spread the mixture in the loaf pan then sprinkle the mixed oats and seeds on top.
  5. Place on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 60 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

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Peppermint Brownie Bark

Brownie Bark

Well, it’s just a few days until Christmas and I am finally getting around to sharing this super simple, and deliciously festive Peppermint Brownie Bark with you! Are you at all a holiday shopping, baking, decorating procrastinator like me? If so, never fear! This recipe is so simple and quick you can make it and give it away as gifts to friends and family and I promise they will be none the wiser.

Each year I start December with the best intentions to be organized, efficient and calm. Without fail come December 20th, I’m anything but, so needless to say, it pays for me to have more than a few easy to throw together recipes that take little time and effort. I’m working on compiling some of these recipes for each major holiday over on Pinterest and once I complete them, I promise to share the link for them here so you too can benefit. Fingers crossed I’ll get to it before the New Year. This recipe is one that you will likely find there.

Brownie Bark 2

If you’ve had brownie bark or brownie brittle before, it’s probably been the variety that is fluffier, and a bit more well, brownie like. This brittle is nothing like that. It’s crispy and crunchy and has a delicious dark chocolate flavor that’s enhanced fantastically with the addition of some instant espresso powder. If you’re not a fan, feel free to leave it out. I ended up making two batches because we frankly devoured the first.

I’m fairly sure I’ve finished all my holiday baking at this point. It’s been a fun and extremely busy time in the kitchen baking lefse, and making a bajillion sugar cookies among other things. My boys are of the age now for the first time, they’ve expressed an interest in learning how I make our traditional Scandinavian desserts and savory foods and it’s been exciting watching them learn the processes. It makes a baking/cooking momma’s heart very proud and I’m grateful for the extra help in the kitchen.

No matter if or however you celebrate, I hope that you are able to enjoy some time to relax, rest and recharge during the weeks ahead. It’s been a pleasure having you visit me here on this little space and I covet and appreciate your comments and words so very much. Wishing you and yours a wonderful, restful remainder of 2014 and a bright and fantastic 2015!

With love,

Maria xoxo

Recipe adapted from Clean Slate Farm

  • Peppermint Brownie Bark




  1. In a small bowl place over simmering water, melt the butter and the dark chocolate. Stir until smooth. Remove from the heat add the sugar, the extract, espresso, cocoa and salt. Stir to combine and cool slightly.
  2. Once cooled, slowly whisk in the egg, then add the flour and chocolate chips.
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Using a spatula, spread the chocolate mixture in the pan as thinly as you can.
  4. Bake for 15- 20 minutes or until the brownie brittle is slightly darkened along the edges. The butter will look like it's separated a bit whilst cooking. This is normal and will be reabsorbed as the brittle cools. Break into bite sized pieces.
  5. Melt the white chocolate in a small bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Drizzle evenly over the top of the pieces then sprinkle the crushed canes over the top. Let the chocolate harden at room temperature or put in the fridge for 15 minutes.

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Scandinavian Fattigman Cookies


I’m heading out the door this morning to go make lefse with some of the ladies in my Daughters of Norway lodge and I’m so very excited about it! I’ve been warming up my muscles this week making these delicious and festive Fattigman cookies, because there will be so much lefse rolling going on I’m going to need all the help I can get. Each December we plan to meet a day or so before our Christmas party to make, roll and bake copious amounts of lefse to sell at our bake sale. It goes without saying that all of the lefse we make sells out, every year. We call it Norwegian gold. There is just something about homemade lefse that turns normal, sane and law abiding citizens into crazed and slightly greedy lefse hoarders.

I’ve been a member (and former President too) of a local Daughters of Norway lodge for many years in our area. It started when my kids were little and I wanted an opportunity to continue to share with them the traditions of our heritage and have the chance to spend time with people that shared those similar interests. It’s just been a fabulous experience, sharing with and learning from ladies who have so much knowledge to give. The preparation of Scandinavian food has always played a large part in our meetings and serves as the main focus of many of our events. I view each of these opportunities a treasure.

Fattigman 2

This recipe is one that is traditionally made in Scandinavia at Christmas time and one that many Scandinavians have many fond memories of.  It’s most common to Norway and Sweden but I have a Danish friend that says they made it while she was growing up too. Fattigman, means Poor Man’s cookie and truly I’ve not met anyone who can tell me how or why it came to be called that.  I’ll I know is that they’re amazing.

What are they exactly? Cardamom scented dough, rolled thin and cut into diamond shapes, shaped then fried in oil with a generous dusting of powdered sugar. A bit more effort than your typical cookie but oh so worth it. Fattigman cookie rollers  are pretty widely available so if you are at all interested in making these again and again I’d strongly encourage you to pick one up. If you don’t want to go to that trouble, you can easily make the cookies by cutting them in triangles and making a slit in the middle. This charming video will give you an idea how to do it. The cutter uniformly cuts the dough into triangles and conveniently provides a slit in the middle. To make their trademark shape you simply pull one corner through the hole made by the slit.

Fattigman 3

In my mind it’s simply not Christmas unless we make these. Some years I question if they are worth the trouble, but deep down I know that they are. They’re like the strings that bind our past, our heritage to us in these modern times. Little anchors that remind us about what’s important this time of year.

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  • Fattigman
4 dozen


Servings: dozen


  1. In the bowl of a food processor combine the flour and sugar. Pulse briefly. Add the egg, egg yolks, heavy cream, melted butter and cardamom. Pulse to combine thorougly.
  2. Divide dough in half, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Roll dough on a floured board to 1/8" thickness and cut using a fattigman cutter or cut into diamond shapes and make a vertical slit in the middle 1/2" long.
  3. Pull one pointed end of the diamond through the slit in the center until both edges in the middle curl. Set aside, and preheat oil to 375 degrees.
  4. Fry 8 cookies at a time and drain and cool on a paper towel lined baking sheet.
  5. Once cool cover generously with powdered sugar. Eat immediately or store in an airtight container up to 1 week.

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Peppermint Mocha Ice Box Cookies

Mocha Peppermint Cookies

Hi guys! I’m celebrating the arrival of my new dishwasher today (it’s a MAJOR, MAJOR thing!) with these super simple, really delicious ice box cookies! I love any recipe with the words ice box in them frankly, mostly though because it automatically tells me that the recipe is an oldie but goodie and never fails to make me think of my grandmothers.

And can I just say that any house that has a food blogger in it along with two hungry, messy teenage boys absolutely has to have a dishwasher? Oy. It’s been a long week and a half without one.  It brought back memories of when we moved into our first house and were too poor to buy a dishwasher. I had an awesome retro (1960′s) kitchen with a massive old stove, an equally vintage fridge and no dishwasher. Thankfully I only had to do the dishes for two.  I have never looked at a dishwasher the same since. It’s my Christmas miracle and I love it!!

Mocha Peppermint Cookies 2

Now about the cookies! Not only are these babies way easier than traditional rolled sugar cookies the really wonderful thing about them is that you can make up a bunch of dough one day, chuck it in the freezer that day or the next, then bring it out anytime you need to make cookies on the fly and bake them off. If you are anything like me, the whole month of December is pretty much lived on the fly so yeah, you’re gonna want these.

I mentioned on Monday that I’m linking up with the Speckled Palate’s Christmas Cookie Week, so if you are on the hunt for some awesome cookie inspiration you should definitely head over there and take a look around. It goes all week so be sure to check back too for more delicious additions.

These little lovelies are so festive and have a delicious hint of espresso in the dough that really makes the chocolatey, peppermint flavors pop, but you can totally leave it out if that’s not your thing. I also am a huge fan of drizzling anything in chocolate and I’m totally sure that I went completely overboard on the drizzle here. But it’s the holidays so I’m going for it.

Mocha Peppermint Cookies 3

I’m off to sit and stare lovingly at my dishwasher, but I’ll be back later this week with one more recipe for an easy to make, festive treat!

  • Peppermint Mocha Icebox Cookies
4 dozen


Servings: dozen


  1. In the bowl of a mixer, combine the butter and sugar. Beat until light and fluffy. Add the salt, egg and extract. Beat until combined.
  2. Sift the flour, espresso powder, cocoa powder and the baking powder in to the wet mixture and mix until fully incorporated. Remove the dough from the mixer and divide in half.
  3. Roll each half into a long, log approximately 2" wide. Roll each log in the coarse sanding sugar, then wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 2 hours or until firm
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Slice the cookies into 12, 1" circles. Place on a lined baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Remove to a rack and allow to cool.
  5. Melt the chocolate in a small heat proof bowl, placed over a pan of simmering water. Stir periodically. Once melted drizzle with a fork over the top of the cookies, then top with the crushed peppermints. Allow chocolate to cool, then store at room temperature.

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Mini Eggnog Bundt Cakes

Eggnog Bundt Cakes 1b

Well, here we are December 8th and I’m just now getting around to sharing with you this post which I shared on Instagram and Twitter a while back then, promptly dropped the ball on posting. Le sigh… In my defense it’s been a bit wild around here lately with Thanksgiving, decorating, shopping, crazy kid schedules, baking 225 sugar cookies (yes, I did!) and all the other stuff that happens this time of year that you all are already very familiar with.

I have a whole bunch of recipes, that I’m itching to try and share here and while I have my work cut out for me in the next few weeks, decorating those sugar cookies, I’m going to work extra hard to share some easy to make and yummy recipes here with you all. One of my favorites thats super simple and I shared with you last year, is this gorgeous Peppermint Bark.  It fits the criteria for easy and delicious and something that you can easily whip up on a moments notice. So look for more along those lines to come!

Eggnog Bundt Cakes 2b

I’m also excited be participating in The Speckled Palate’s Christmas Cookie Week  this year! I simply love this idea. Anyone can participate, if you have a blog, and it’s so simple, just make your cookie then link up and share. The details are on The Speckled Palate’s page so if you are in the need for some great and delicious cookie recipes or looking to participate, head on over and check it out.

Eggnog Bundt Cakes 3b

Now about the bundt cakes.  Little, buttery cakes of eggnog goodness.  What’s not to love? This recipe makes about 12 little cakes or one large one and is simple, simple. Bourbon of course is present (as it should always be when we’re talking eggnog I think) but if that’s not your thing feel free to leave it out and just add vanilla.  My guys devoured these cakes and were circling the table as I photographed them. These would make a lovely dessert for Christmas dinner, to serve at a party or just to eat with a steaming pot of tea on a cold, dark winter’s day. Really perfect too for holiday gift giving. Wrapped up with a bow in a clear cellophane bag would be especially cute and festive.

I’m off to the kitchen, but please head on over to the Issaquah Press for the recipe!

The Drum Cocktail and The North American Whiskey Guide

The Drum Cocktail 4

In case you haven’t noticed guys, tis the season for citrus spiked, body warming and festive drinks! Woo hoo! Currently I need all the body warming drinks I can get my hands on. We are hunkered down around here with some seasonally abnormal, frigid temperatures that belong easily somewheres in the mid-west. As I write, I’ve got a big ole cup of coffee at my elbow and I’m burrowed as far under an electric throw as I can be and still have my arms free to type.

This moderate temp-loving Seattle girl is a bit loving, a bit hating all the cold. I know I’m not winning any points by complaining to those of you who see these temps on average for months at a time, but to most of us here we are just biding our time until the universe sets itself to rights and we can go back to enjoying wet and warm Seattle winters they way we always do.

On the plus side, one of the awesome things about all this cold is the excuse that comes along with it to drink a few more eggnog lattes, hot buttered rums, Meyer lemon honey tea and bracing, body warming drinks like this rye whiskey cocktail called The Drum.

The Drum Cocktail 5

This recipe, is featured in the wonderful: The North American Whiskey Guide From Behind the Bar: Real Bartenders’ Reviews of More than 250 Whiskeys. 

Written by Chad Berkey, general manager of The Aero Club Bar in San Diego (an establishment that boasts no less than 900 different varieties of whiskey) and Jeremy Leblanc, Senior Bartender and head mixologist at ALTITUDE Sky Lounge (one of  the Conde Nast top 10 roof bars in the world, also in San Diego), this book is the definitive guide on all things whiskey.

I have a particular fondness for whiskey, bourbon being my spirit of choice, but I am developing more of a taste for whiskey of a different stripe lately. For a new connoisseur, this book is exactly the kind of book that fantastically helps identify and elucidate the differences between whiskeys. Because honestly, who hasn’t gone to the liquor store and stood there looking at the wall of  bottles and scratched their head a time or two about what’s good? Here, over 250 different whiskeys are reviewed by bartenders who know their stuff. That kind of information is akin to gold and I will definitely be taking this book along with me on my next shopping excursion.

Along with the reviews there are also some excellent recipes for whiskey cocktails. I chose to share The Drum with you in large part because it’s a twist on the traditional Old Fashioned, one of my favorite drinks. Made from charred lemon and a delicious kumquat syrup it also replaces the traditional bitters element by using Cynar, an amazing, Amaro liqueur that’s derived from herbs, and most notably artichokes. Either that intrigues your or scares you, but I have to say it’s pretty fantastic and no, there is no noticeable artichoke flavor mucking about in your drink. The result is so, so good.

Fresh and glorious citrus is finally in season here, Meyer lemons and kumquats have made their way into stores, and I may or may not have pounced on the produce man when I saw him carting them out of their boxes the other day. I’m pretty sure I scared him in my “enthusiasm”. If I could I’d make him one of these to apologize I would.

I can’t help but thing that this book wouldn’t make an awesome Christmas/holiday gift for that guy  or gal in your family that you know likes a good drink but is rather hard to buy for. I plan on purchasing several for just such a purpose.

Here’s to happy holiday drinking friends! I do hope you give this one a try.

The Drum Cocktail 6

This post contains affiliate links and is not sponsored. All opinions contained here are my own.

  • The Drum Cocktail
  • from The North American Whiskey Guide from Behind the Bar: Real Bartenders' Reviews of More Than 250 Whiskeys by Chad Berkey and Jeremy LeBlanc printed with permission of Page St. Publishing




  1. First, char the lemons with a kitchen/brûlée torch. You can use a cast iron skillet at home to char either side of the lemon. Once charred, remove them with a pair of tongs and let cool for a moment. Once cool, muddle the charred lemons with all the ingredients in a shaker. Add ice, shake and double strain into a coupe.

Recipe notes

For the kumquat syrup, I used this recipe.

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Three Excellent Leftover Turkey Sandwiches

Grilled Turkey, Cambozola and Cranberry Sandiwches

Grilled Turkey with Cambozola and Cranberry Relish

I am finally finding my way out of my Thanksgiving turkey induced coma to share with you all some fantastic leftover turkey sandwiche ideas which (if you are lucky enough to still have some leftover turkey) you should definitely add to your list of must makes very soon.

We had a fantastic and fun filled Thanksgiving at our house, loads of family and delicious food along with the drama of a broken dishwasher the day before the big day so needless to say right now I am all over easy meals that don’t involve too much prep or too many dishes.

Grilled Turkey, Brie and Marmalade Sandwiches

Grilled Turkey with Brie, Red Onion and Marmalade

There is just something about grilled sandwiches that make me feel as if I’m not just eating any old sandwich. Grilling them in a pan or on a press, while just a little bit more effort than the usual, always results with me wondering why I just don’t do it more often. From the simple and plain grilled cheese to Gruyere dripping French Dip sandwiches, Croque Monsieur, and these turkey stuffed beauties there is something that always appeals to every member of our household and needless to say there is nothing quite like the smell of warm bread toasting away to buttery, caramelized goodness. Pure crack for my crew.

Turkey Cilantro Sliders with Curried Mayoniase_

Turkey Cilantro Sliders with Curried Mayonnaise 

And finally these little curried mayonnaise sliders are so simple, full of fantastic flavors and a nice departure from the typical fare we eat in December, I just had to include them. I’m always on the lookout for more sandwich ideas so if you have one that you absolutely love and want to share I’d love to hear your favorites.

You can find the recipes and how to for all the sandwiches over at Relish Magazine.

Mini Cranberry Mince Pies

Mini Cranberry Mince Pies

This recipe has been languishing in my computer now for almost a year. I had every intention of sharing it with you last November, but as life usually gets in the way of my best and well laid plans, that obviously never happened. Recently, as it turns out, I just so happened to remember that these photos and this recipe were still there patiently waiting for their day in the sun.

Mini Cranberry Mince Pies 2

My memory is not as bad as I seem to think it is, thankfully. Yay for that! It’s a small victory and I’m gonna take it for exactly that. I made these last year with the intention of sharing these at Holiday time because (lets be honest) if you are at all the type of person to indulge in a mince pie you are going to do it at then.

Mince pies in the States have gotten a bad rap. Along with fruitcake, there is this perception that mince pies are purely the purview of the silver-haired, senior generation. It’s old fashioned and for the longest time fashion-less reputation, have been for many, decidedly uncool. Not to mention it’s hazy and slightly stomach churning history that includes the addition of actual meat (at least in America anyway.)

Growing up we typically had our mince pie at both Christmas and Thanksgiving. Usually they were prepared lovingly by my Mom or Grandmother as a large, whole pie. After being introduced to mince pies the way they are most commonly consumed around the world, (in small mini form) I was hooked. Mince pie is rich, no doubt, so consuming it in small bite sized portions is for me, the perfect method.

Mini Cranberry Mince Pies 3

This recipe adapted from Nigella Lawson’s Nigella Christmas is the perfect recipe for dipping your toes into the mince pie world if you are at all curious but still slightly unsure about the whole thing.  It’s also a great and perfect fusion of the traditional British recipe with a New World spin that just works perfectly for Thanksgiving I think.

Recipe adapted from Nigella Christmas

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  • Mini Cranberry Mince Pies
30 mince pies


Servings: mince pies


For the cranberry mince:
  1. In a large sauce pan combine the port and sugar over low heat. Stir until dissolved. Add the spices, and dried fruits along with the orange zest. Simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the fruits have softened.
  2. Remove from the heat, add the bourbon and honey, then the cranberry relish. Stir to combine and set aside to cool. Prepare the crust.
For the crust:
  1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, vegetable shortening, salt and the butter. Process just until pea sized chunks form.
  2. Slowly pulse the mixture while adding the orange juice. Continue to pulse until the juice has been incorporated and the dough begins to form a ball. If you need more liquid to get to this stage add an additional teaspoon of ice water until you reach the desired consistency.
  3. Remove from the work bowl and flatten dough into a disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  1. Remove dough from the refrigerator and set aside to warm slightly. Roll dough thinly and cut into circles using a 2 1/2" cookie or biscuit cutter. This size works well for my mini muffin tins, but your's may be different so use a slightly larger or smaller size if necessary. Lightly oil just the top portion of your mini muffin tin to prevent sticking. Use a shot glass or a mini tart tamper to gently easy the dough into the well of your mini muffin tins. Fill the tin with the pastry rounds, then add no more than 1 teaspoon of cranberry mince filling to each well. If you add any more you run the risk of it bubbling over and being difficult to remove from the pan.
  2. Roll the remainder of the dough thinly and using a small star cutter, (aprox. 2" in diameter) cut enough stars to fit the top of each tart. Place the pan in the refrigerator while your oven preheats.
  3. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Once hot, place your muffin tin on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes or until the crust just begins to brown.
  4. Remove from the oven and let the pies sit for no more than 5 minutes. Carefully remove the pies and let them finish cooling on a wire rack. Cool your tin completely before finishing the remainder of the recipe. Dust with confectioners sugar or serve with brandy butter.

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