Cranberry Fizz

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Fruity, tart, and sparkling cocktails are always so refreshing and this Cranberry Fizz, spiked with vodka, is an easy drink you’re sure to love.

Fruity, tart, and sparkling cocktails are always so refreshing and this Cranberry Fizz, spiked with vodka, is an easy drink you’re sure to love.I’m a huge fan of easy cocktails. When I go to a fancy bar and look at the amazing combinations of flavors and bizarre concoctions they come up with, I realize the drinks I make at home simply can’t compare. What I do make, however, are simple drinks that taste good. What more do you need, really?

Fruity, tart, and sparkling cocktails are always so refreshing and this Cranberry Fizz, spiked with vodka, is an easy drink you’re sure to love. If you want a fancy drink with black walnut bitters and habanero infused absinthe, you’re best bet is to visit any of the trendy bars in Portland, Oregon. You’ll never see me come up with something crazy like that. What you will see are drinks like this Cranberry Fizz.

Fruity, tart, and sparkling cocktails are always so refreshing and this Cranberry Fizz, spiked with vodka, is an easy drink you’re sure to love.This tart and tasty cocktail starts with 100% cranberry juice, fresh orange juice, and sugar. I basically make a simple syrup by cooking these things together, but I take it a step farther and continue cooking until I end up with a thick ruby red syrup.

Fruity, tart, and sparkling cocktails are always so refreshing and this Cranberry Fizz, spiked with vodka, is an easy drink you’re sure to love.You can turn this into a non-alcoholic mocktail like I did for my kids by just mixing this syrup with sparkling water, or in my case sparkling cranberry lime water. That, all by itself, is downright delicious. If you’re looking to make a cocktail, however, an ice cold shot of vodka does the trick.

Fruity, tart, and sparkling cocktails are always so refreshing and this Cranberry Fizz, spiked with vodka, is an easy drink you’re sure to love.Just to make this drink extra pretty, I love freezing fresh cranberries in ice cubes. When you add a few cranberries and only fill the ice cubes wells half way up and let them freeze, you can top them with more water and freeze in order to get the cranberries to get frozen in the middle. Enjoy!

Fruity, tart, and sparkling cocktails are always so refreshing and this Cranberry Fizz, spiked with vodka, is an easy drink you’re sure to love.

Cranberry Fizz
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Fruity, tart, and sparkling cocktails are always so refreshing and this Cranberry Fizz, spiked with vodka, is an easy drink you’re sure to love.
Author:
Recipe type: Drinks
Yields: 2 drinks
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsweetened cranberry juice
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • juice from one orange
  • 2 shots vodka
  • 12 ounces sparkling water
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine cranberry juice, sugar, and orange juice and cook until reduced by half while swirling occasionally, about 15 minutes.
  2. Store in refrigerator until ready to use.
  3. To make cocktail, combine sweetened cranberry syrup with vodka. Mix well. Divide between two ice filled glasses. Top with sparkling water.

Fruity, tart, and sparkling cocktails are always so refreshing and this Cranberry Fizz, spiked with vodka, is an easy drink you’re sure to love.
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Cranberry White Chocolate Mason Jar Cookie Kits

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Cranberry White Chocolate Mason Jar Cookie Kits are fun homemade gifts that beautifully display the dry ingredients of a tasty holiday cookie.

Cranberry White Chocolate Mason Jar Cookie Kits are fun homemade gifts that beautifully display the dry ingredients of a tasty holiday cookie.
Have you ever had someone give you a cookie kit before? Every year I tell myself to make a bunch of them to hand out to friends, co-workers, and teachers and I never have. That is, until this year. I finally put together some of my own homemade cookie kits and I was not only impressed with how easy they were to make, but they made a super tasty cookie as well!

Cranberry White Chocolate Mason Jar Cookie Kits are fun homemade gifts that beautifully display the dry ingredients of a tasty holiday cookie.

I couldn’t just put a kit together without trying it out first, now could I? Okay, okay. The fact that I had a major cookie craving may have played into the fact that I made a batch as well. You caught me.

Cranberry White Chocolate Mason Jar Cookie Kits are fun homemade gifts that beautifully display the dry ingredients of a tasty holiday cookie.

When I was trying to think about the kind of cookie kit I wanted to make, I figured I had two options – chocolate candy pieces or dried fruit. I wanted something colorful that would look appropriate for the holidays. I ended up going with cranberry and white chocolate because the tart of the cranberries pairs so well with the sweet and creamy white chocolate, plus who doesn’t love red and white at Christmas time? The mix also contains pecan pieces and rolled oats for texture, and the rest of the ingredients you’d expect in a cookie like sugar, flour, baking soda and salt.

Cranberry White Chocolate Mason Jar Cookie Kits are fun homemade gifts that beautifully display the dry ingredients of a tasty holiday cookie.

I picked up a few sparkly fabrics to decorate the lids only to realize they were tulle and rather transparent. Thanks to my quick thinking and lack of other craft materials in my house, I figured a brown coffee filter would do the trick between the metal lid and the tulle. It ended up looking super cute and only took a few minutes to make.

Cranberry White Chocolate Mason Jar Cookie Kits are fun homemade gifts that beautifully display the dry ingredients of a tasty holiday cookie.

These cookie kits are super easy to make, whether you’re putting together one or twenty at a time. They’re one of those homemade, inexpensive gifts that make for a really nice gesture. Who wouldn’t want something like this where they only have to mix in three wet ingredients and 12 minutes later they have warm delicious cookies in front of them? I would… which is why I kept a couple kits for myself!

Cranberry White Chocolate Mason Jar Cookie Kits are fun homemade gifts that beautifully display the dry ingredients of a tasty holiday cookie.

This recipe uses pure vanilla extract. Did you know you can make your own homemade vanilla extract? It makes the perfect gift too. Watch how in the video below.
Mason Jar Cookie Kits
 
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Cranberry White Chocolate Mason Jar Cookie Kits are fun to make gifts that beautifully display the dry ingredients of a tasty holiday cookie.
Author:
Recipe type: dessert
Yields: 18 cookies
Ingredients
layered in jar:
  • 1 cup plus 2 T all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
additional ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
Instructions
For the mason jar:
  1. Use a clean 1 quart or 1 liter jar. First combine the flour with the baking soda and salt. Then, mix the sugars together before adding to jar to prevent clumping. Then, to layer add half of the flour mixture to the jar, followed by the oats, then the remaining flour mixture. Top with layers of the sugar mixture, then the cranberries, followed by the white chocolate chips, and finally with the chopped pecans.
For the directions:
  1. Create gift tags with the following instructions: Cranberry White Chocolate Cookies: 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a cookie sheet or line with parchment paper. 2. In a medium bowl, cream 1/2 cup very soft butter until smooth. Stir in 1 egg and 1 teaspoon of vanilla until fluffy. Add the entire jar of ingredients, and mix together by hand until well blended. Drop by heaping spoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets. 3. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or until edges start to brown. Cool on wire racks.
Cranberry White Chocolate Mason Jar Cookie Kits are fun homemade gifts that beautifully display the dry ingredients of a tasty holiday cookie.
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Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake

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Serve up this sweet homemade Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake with a hot cup of freshly brewed BUNN coffeemaker coffee for the perfect breakfast this holiday season.

Serve up this sweet homemade Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake with a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee for the perfect breakfast this holiday season.

I went a little crazy with the photos in this post. Why, you ask? Well, because I just got a brand new coffee maker!  And its not just any coffee maker, its the BUNN HB Coffeemaker!  There was nothing wrong with my last coffee maker. That is, actually, I didn’t think there was anything wrong with it until I drank my first cup of freshly brewed coffee that my new BUNN made. What a difference!

Serve up this sweet homemade Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake with a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee for the perfect breakfast this holiday season.

You see, this BUNN HB Coffeemaker lets you find your inner barista and creates a perfect, smooth tasting cup of coffee.  The BUNN HB Coffeemaker brews to professional standards every single time. I wanted to understand why this coffee maker is so unique so I went to the website which explains why the BUNN HB Coffeemaker is not your typical coffeemaker.

Most typical drip coffeemakers heat the water at an inconsistent temperature and then slowly “burp” or “spit” the water over the grounds. The result is often bitter tasting coffee.

What makes this 10-cup programmable coffeemaker unique is the professional grade Heat & Release Technology™ in the brewer uses a digital thermometer to precisely measure water temperature to the ideal brewing temperature (between 197.6º F and 204.8º F). Only once the water has reached the ideal temperature is it then released over the grounds. The commercial style, lime-tolerant 6-stream sprayhead is designed to shower the grounds for maximum turbulence- the effective interaction of hot water and coffee grounds. The coffeemaker maintains the ideal contact time between the water and coffee grounds for proper extraction.

It’s unique brewing process has qualified it to meet the Specialty Coffee Association of America’s (SCAA) professional standards and only 10 coffeemakers have received this distinction. The BUNN Coffeemaker has beautiful design features including curved lines, a free hanging funnel, and stainless steel accents for a modern aesthetic.

Serve up this sweet homemade Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake with a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee for the perfect breakfast this holiday season.

So, basically, you get to bring professional brewed coffee right to your kitchen with BUNN because it effortlessly creates a perfect cup of coffee just like your favorites brewed your local coffeehouse, restaurant or café.

I was so excited about getting my new coffee maker that I wanted to make a sweet treat to go with it and my husband suggested coffee cake. Normally, his suggestions can be pretty far out there, but sometimes he picks a real winner. Yes – coffee cake. Why didn’t I think of that? Of course, I had to put my own spin on it plus I had to use up the extra cranberries in my refrigerator, so that’s how we ended up with Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake.

I couldn’t wait to try my first cup of coffee brewed in my new BUNN Coffeemaker. I had already had my first cup of coffee from the old coffeemaker at 3:30am this morning (don’t ask – long story) so I was able to compare apples to apples. Or, I suppose I could say coffee to coffee.  I used the same exact kind of coffee and drank it the same way – with a splash of half and half. WOW – what a difference. I kid you not, the difference in temperature, quality and taste was incredibly noticable. Even my husband, who normally can’t even tell if we’re eating chicken or beef for dinner, was able to notice that the coffee brewed in our new BUNN was remarkably better.

Serve up this sweet homemade Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake with a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee for the perfect breakfast this holiday season.

Can you imagine how good this would be on Thanksgiving morning? Or on Christmas morning? Or on Sunday morning? Or right now?

Serve up this sweet homemade Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake with a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee for the perfect breakfast this holiday season.

And you simply can’t have coffee cake without an excellent cup of coffee, right? Right.

Serve up this sweet homemade Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake with a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee for the perfect breakfast this holiday season.

Treat yourself or someone you really care about to a new BUNN HB Coffeemaker. You can order one at Williams Sonoma. While you’re doing a little online shopping at one of my favorite stores, keep in mind that I love to cook (hint hint).

This recipe uses pure vanilla extract. Did you know you can make your own homemade vanilla extract? It makes the perfect gift too. Watch how in the video below.
Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake
 
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Serve up this sweet homemade Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake with a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee for the perfect breakfast this holiday season.
Author:
Recipe type: breakfast
Yields: 8 servings
Ingredients
Topping:
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 cube) butter
  • 2 cups (about 8 ounces) fresh cranberries
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
Cake:
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Wrap the outside of a 9 inch springform pan with aluminum foil to prevent leaking. Sift together the flour, dried cranberries, orange zest, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine brown sugar and 1/2 cup butter. Bring to a boil, then add cranberries, pecans, and orange zest, stir, and pour into bottom of springform pan. Do not overcook the sugar mixture.
  3. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and 3/4 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Beat in the flour mixture alternately with the sour cream. Pour batter into prepared pan.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto serving platter and carefully remove pan. Serve warm.
Serve up this sweet homemade Upside Down Cranberry Coffee Cake with a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee for the perfect breakfast this holiday season.
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Fresh Cranberry Gelatin Mold

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This Thanksgiving, stay away from the cans and make your own elegant homemade Fresh Cranberry Gelatin Mold with the flavors of orange and Grand Marnier.

This Thanksgiving, stay away from the cans and make your own elegant homemade Fresh Cranberry Gelatin Mold with the flavors of orange and Grand Marnier.

I sort of cheated with this recipe. How, you ask? Well, I took my original recipe for my fresh cranberry sauce and the only thing I did was bloom a little gelatin in a mixture of water and cranberry juice and add it to the cranberry sauce to create the shape of the mold. I suppose its kinda like cheating because its not an entirely new recipe, but the original cranberry sauce is so darn good, there was no way I was going to change it.

This Thanksgiving, stay away from the cans and make your own elegant homemade Fresh Cranberry Gelatin Mold with the flavors of orange and Grand Marnier.

You can definitely add the gel-ified cranberry sauce to a larger mold and have one big one for the table, but I saw these super cute mini bundt pans at the store and thought they would be great for little mini cranberry sauce molds. If you’re setting a big beautiful table for a holiday meal, its much better to have several of these within an arms length of everyone so nobody has to wait for it to be passed around. The same goes for herbed butter – so make lots of those too to go on your freshly baked rolls.

This Thanksgiving, stay away from the cans and make your own elegant homemade Fresh Cranberry Gelatin Mold with the flavors of orange and Grand Marnier.

The bottom line – if you like to spoon your cranberry sauce – make the original. If you like to slice it – make this. Either way, it will make an impressive presentation for your guests and I guarantee they will love it!

This Thanksgiving, stay away from the cans and make your own elegant homemade Fresh Cranberry Gelatin Mold with the flavors of orange and Grand Marnier.

Fresh Cranberry Gelatin Mold
 
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This Thanksgiving, stay away from the cans and make your own elegant homemade Fresh Cranberry Gelatin Mold with the flavors of orange and Grand Marnier.
Author:
Recipe type: side
Yields: 3 mini molds
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar Coupons
  • zest from one orange
  • juice from 2 large valencia oranges (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 12 ounces fresh cranberries, rinsed
  • 1/8 cup Grand Marnier
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cranberry juice
  • 1 (1 ounce) packet unflavored gelatin
Instructions
  1. In a medium sized saucepan over medium heat, dissolve the sugar in the orange juice with the orange zest and pumpkin pie spice. This has to be what heaven smells like.
  2. Stir in the cranberries and cook until the cranberries start to pop (about 10 minutes). Turn heat to low and add Grand Marnier, stir, and cook for another minute or so.
  3. While cranberry sauce is cooking, add water and cranberry juice to small bowl and sprinkle gelatin on top. Give it a swirl and allow the gelatin to bloom for at least 5 minutes.
  4. Once the cranberry sauce is done, add the gelatin mixture and stir well to combine.
  5. Lightly spray a mold pan (I used three small ones) with oil and add the hot cranberry sauce. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to set and fully cool in refrigerator, at least 2 hours.
  6. To serve, cover with plate and invert. If sauce doesn't come out easily, slide a butter knife around edge to release before inverting. Serve cold.

This Thanksgiving, stay away from the cans and make your own elegant homemade Fresh Cranberry Gelatin Mold with the flavors of orange and Grand Marnier.
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Cranberry Screwdriver

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This Cranberry Screwdriver with cranberry vodka, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a splash of Grand Marnier is a delicious and easy to make cocktail.

This Cranberry Screwdriver with cranberry vodka, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a splash of Grand Marnier is a delicious and easy to make cocktail.

Its been awhile since I’ve made a cocktail. Too long, if you ask me. I had this wonderful Deep Eddy Cranberry Vodka sitting in my cabinet far too long and it was just begging me to drink it. It really was. This particular vodka is made from real New England cranberries and is all-natural handcrafted vodka from Austin, TX. Next to Portland, OR, the best place in this country you can go for amazing food and spirits would have to be Austin.

This Cranberry Screwdriver with cranberry vodka, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a splash of Grand Marnier is a delicious and easy to make cocktail.

I love a tasty screwdriver, so I thought I should make a festive screwdriver. Its pretty much your standard screwdriver which is vodka + OJ, but this drink was way better than a boring old plain screwdriver.

This Cranberry Screwdriver with cranberry vodka, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a splash of Grand Marnier is a delicious and easy to make cocktail.

You can shake this cocktail with ice to really mix it well and get it ice cold, but I’m lazy and usually don’t want to clean an extra dish if I don’t have to, so I just added all the ingredients to the glass.

This Cranberry Screwdriver with cranberry vodka, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a splash of Grand Marnier is a delicious and easy to make cocktail.

Start with a couple ounces of the cranberry vodka and top it off with some fresh squeezed orange juice. I happened to have some tasty cara cara oranges and juicing two of them gave me exactly the amount I needed. A little splash of Grand Marnier really finishes this lip smacking drink off.

This Cranberry Screwdriver with cranberry vodka, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a splash of Grand Marnier is a delicious and easy to make cocktail.

Not only is it quite tasty, but it packs a great punch and its pretty. How can you go wrong?

This Cranberry Screwdriver with cranberry vodka, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a splash of Grand Marnier is a delicious and easy to make cocktail.

Cranberry Screwdriver
 
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This Cranberry Screwdriver with cranberry vodka, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a splash of Grand Marnier is a delicious and easy to make cocktail.
Author:
Recipe type: drink
Yields: 1 cocktail
Ingredients
  • 2 ounces cranberry vodka
  • 4 ounces freshly squeezed orange juice (I used cara cara)
  • splash of Grand Marnier
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a shaker or just combine over ice in glass and stir. Enjoy!

This Cranberry Screwdriver with cranberry vodka, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a splash of Grand Marnier is a delicious and easy to make cocktail.
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Holiday Bacon Wrapped Dates

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These tasty Holiday Bacon Wrapped Dates are stuffed with holiday goodies like dried cranberries and candied pecans to make the perfect holiday appetizer.

Holiday Bacon Wrapped Dates | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Oh, how I love me some bacon wrapped dates. Bacon wrapped dates are to Krissy like heroine is to a junkie.  Over the summer, I made some blue cheese almond stuffed bacon wrapped dates.  Those were mighty tasty indeed.  These, however, were eevn sweeter and make the perfect addition to any Thanksgiving, Christmas, and/or New Year’s Eve celebration. Or, if you’re like me, you can make them to celebrate that you made it to work without sitting at a stoplight, or you tried on a pair of jeans and they actually fit perfectly, or because its Tuesday.  You get my point… no reason really needed besides the desire to completely satisfy your taste buds.

Holiday Bacon Wrapped Dates | Self Proclaimed Foodie

I adore bacon, but I can’t stand under cooked or unevenly cooked bacon. That is why I skewer these little gems and don’t allow the bacon to be smushed up against other bacon. I want them all to cook perfectly even and for the fat to drip to the bottom of the pan. The result is golden brown bacon where the fat is completely rendered but its still chewy and delicious.  I know my bacon, people. Trust me on this one.

Holiday Bacon Wrapped Dates | Self Proclaimed Foodie

These two bite treats are incredibly sweet with a salty kick. Exactly what you want in a treat like this.

Holiday Bacon Wrapped Dates | Self Proclaimed Foodie

And because you know I like my close ups, I figured I’d throw in just one more photo for your viewing pleasure.  These are a real crowd pleaser, so be sure to make a batch to bring to your next holiday party!

Holiday Bacon Wrapped Dates | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Holiday Bacon Wrapped Dates
 
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These tasty Holiday Bacon Wrapped Dates are stuffed with holiday goodies like dried cranberries and candied pecans to make the perfect holiday appetizer.
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Yields: 24
Ingredients
  • 24 whole pitted dates (about a pound)
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup homemade candied pecans*
  • 8 slices bacon, strips cut into thirds (12 ounces - recommend TJ's applewood bacon)
  • 6 metal skewers needed
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Slice dates lengthwise, cutting to, but not through, other side. Remove pits and discard.
  3. Combine cream cheese, dried cranberries, and pecans in food processor. Pulse until you achieve desired consistency (large or small chunks - personal preference). first 4 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a fork. Open dates and place filling (about 1 teaspoon) cheese mixture into each date.
  4. Cut bacon slices into thirds so that you have 24 pieces that are about 3 inches long. Wrap bacon around date such that the stuffed section is facing the middle of the bacon and the ends wrap around the other side and barely overlap. Use metal skewer to stab through overlapped bacon and through the stuffed date (stuffed date should be vertical on skewer). If using six metal skewers, fit each skewer with 4 dates and space them out such that they are not touching. Balance skewers on a rimmed baking sheet such that the dates are either not touching the bottom of the pan or only the bottoms are touching. Basically, you want the bacon entirely exposed and not touching another wrapped date.
  5. Bake at 350° F until bacon fat is rendered but still chewy (mine took 50 minutes). Serve immediately.
  6. -50min
Notes
* Okay to use raw pecans in lieu of candied pecans

 

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Cranberry Pecan Brie en Croute

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Warm Cranberry Pecan Brie en Croute wraps buttery puff pastry around brie, fresh cranberry sauce, and candied pecans to make the perfect holiday appetizer.

Cranberry Pecan Brie en Croute | Self Proclaimed Foodie

 

Its not often I make an appetizer that could just as easily been served up as a breakfast treat or a dessert. Its also not that often that I make an appetizer and my kids fight over who gets last bit. This warm cranberry pecan brie wrapped in puff pastry did all those things.

Cranberry Pecan Brie en Croute | Self Proclaimed Foodie

This is also one of those appetizers that look super fancy but in reality only takes 5 minutes to put together. It starts with a sheet of puff pastry. I buy it in the frozen section from Trader Joe’s and let it thaw in the refrigerator. Puff pastry likes to be warm enough to be flexible and stretch but cool enough to handle without being overly sticky. There’s a fine line you’ll come to know with practice. I prefer to use homemade cranberry sauce and homemade candied pecans because they simply taste better and are more cost effective than store bought, but I understand (probably more than most) how busy the holidays are and if you need to use store bought, no one will think any less of you.

Cranberry Pecan Brie en Croute | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Go ahead and wrap that sucker up any which way you please. Make it pretty or make it ugly. No one will care because of how delicious it is.

Cranberry Pecan Brie en Croute | Self Proclaimed Foodie

You just want to be sure to keep the wax on the brie in tact so the cheese stays in a nice little bundle and doesn’t ooze out until you cut into it. I’m telling you this because I actually had a 2 pound brick of brie and cut it in half for this recipe. Not pictured: all the wonderful brie that oozed out the other end during the cooking process.  Ah, the magic of photography and what you can and cannot see with a shallow depth of field. Do as Self Proclaimed Foodie says, not always as Self Proclaimed Foodie does. My mistake didn’t ruin the recipe at all, but I must share my mistakes with you so you will only experience success.

Cranberry Pecan Brie en Croute | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Now, I suppose you could serve this with crackers but we didn’t feel it needed them. The buttery and flaky puff pastry is plenty for this appetizer, so we were completely happy to slice it and gobble it up as is.

If you’re wondering about that homemade cranberry sauce and candied pecans, go ahead and click on the photos below to check out those recipes:

Fresh Cranberry Sauce | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Homemade Candied Pecans | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Cranberry Pecan Brie en Croute
 
Prep time
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Total time
 
Warm Cranberry Pecan Brie en Croute wraps buttery puff pastry around brie, fresh cranberry sauce, and candied pecans to make the perfect holiday appetizer.
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Yields: 8 servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Make ahead homemade fresh cranberry sauce and candied pecans or purchase from the store (but obviously homemade is always best).
  2. Preheat oven to 375° F.
  3. Unwrap puff pastry sheet and set on baking sheet. Place brie on top of puff pastry. Mound cold cranberry sauce on top of brie followed by candied pecans. Wrap pastry dough around brie, trying your best to seal it. Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until pastry is golden brown. Serve immediately.

 

link
Warm Cranberry Pecan Brie en Croute wraps buttery puff pastry around brie, fresh cranberry sauce, and candied pecans to make the perfect holiday appetizer.
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Schweddy Balls

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My husband’s famous Schweddy Balls are so good that they will have you stuffing your mouth this holiday season. The are bite sized cocktail meatballs with cranberry and chili sauce, warmed to perfection in the slow cooker, and are quickly eaten at any holiday party or game day gathering.

Schweddy Balls | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Hello!  This is Krissy’s husband. I’ve never written anything on her blog, but she loves my Schweddy Balls so much that she wanted me to come on here and tell everyone about how good they are.  My Scheddy Balls have been enjoyed by countless people, young & old, men & women alike, for years now. Especially around the holidays, people start to beg for them. Then, after the holidays pass and people start thinking about all the good stuff they want to shove in their mouths during the Superbowl, my Schweddy Balls are the first thing that comes to mind.  These Schweddy Balls have been perfectly shaped by hand, are the perfect size to fit one (or two if you have a big appetite) in your mouth, and aren’t as salty as a lot of the other balls out there my wife has tried.

Schweddy Balls | Self Proclaimed Foodie

My famous Schweddy Balls start with an easy to make basic meatball recipe. Its important to handle the balls gently and not over work them. Size matters – no one wants to stuff a Schweddy Ball into their mouth if its too big. Also, if its too big or too small, the flavor ratio with the sauce is always off.  Oh yes, the sauce. Its so delicious, yet almost hard to even describe. My wife says my Schweddy Ball sauce is just the right amount of sweet with the right amount of tangy and it has the perfect amount of flavor needed to compliment the balls.  If kept warm in a slow cooker, these Schweddy Balls can last all night, but they typically don’t because they’re the first thing people go for at any party.  Hope you enjoy my Schweddy Balls as much as my wife and all our friends do! Enjoy!

Schweddy Balls | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Oh, and if you enjoyed hearing about my version of Schweddy Balls, be sure to check out my cousin, Pete, talking about his balls on The Delicious Dish on NPR.

 

 

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
SCHWEDDY BALLS
 
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My husband's famous Schweddy Balls are so good that they will have you stuffing your mouth this holiday season. Bite sized cocktail meatballs with cranberry and chili sauce.
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Yields: 40 balls
Ingredients
Meatball:
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef (grass fed if available)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, minced
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 very small onion (or 1/2 large), diced
Sauce:
Instructions
  1. Make some homemade cranberry sauce (make lots because you can use it for all sorts of things).
  2. To make the meatballs, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium sized bowl, combine ground beef, egg, parsley, bread crumbs, and diced onion. Use hands to mix until all ingredients are well combined, but try not to over mix. For balls into bite sized balls, about the size of a large walnut, and evenly space on a baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven 25-30 minutes or until nicely browned on top. If making ahead, store in refrigerator in airtight container until ready to serve.
  3. To serve as an awesome appetizer, combine cranberry sauce, chili sauce, and lemon juice in a slow cooker. Add meatballs and toss to coat. Turn to low until heated through, then reduce heat to warm to keep warm throughout the night. Recipe easily doubles or triples if you're serving a crowd.

 

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Make Ahead Stuffed Cranberry French Toast

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Make Ahead Stuffed Cranberry French Toast is a delicious and easy way to prepare a sweet and filling breakfast for your family the night before.

Make Ahead Cranberry Stuffed French Toast | Self Proclaimed Foodie

I love breakfast. I especially love breakfast when all I have to do is wake up, shove it in the oven, and then an incredible family meal is ready for us to consume. I’m most thankful for this kind of make ahead casserole breakfast this time of year because there’s nothing better than being able to relax in our warm cozy jammies while smelling the wonderful aroma of a warm breakfast cooking.

Make Ahead Cranberry Stuffed French Toast | Self Proclaimed Foodie

You can use any kind of bread for this recipe and french bread is fairly typical, but I came across these cranberry ciabattini rolls at the store and knew they were destined for this breakfast casserole.  We actually bought this same kind last year at Thanksgiving and I just loved them, so I knew that they would taste unbelievably good baked up with homemade cranberry sauce, cream cheese, and all the other goodness of french toast.

Make Ahead Cranberry Stuffed French Toast | Self Proclaimed Foodie

This is super easy to make. Just through half of the bread in your buttered casserole dish, top it with the cranberry sauce and cream cheese, cover with your remaining bread, and then pour your egg mixture on top. Be sure to smash that bread down so that all of it absorbs the liquid overnight.  You know what I’m talking about.

Make Ahead Cranberry Stuffed French Toast | Self Proclaimed Foodie

The next morning, all you need to do is pull it out of the oven and serve it up with some pure maple syrup and you’ve got an amazing and easy holiday breakfast.

Make Ahead Cranberry Stuffed French Toast | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Make Ahead Stuffed Cranberry French Toast
 
Prep time
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Make Ahead Stuffed Cranberry French Toast is a delicious and easy way to prepare a sweet and filling breakfast for your family the night before.
Author:
Recipe type: breakfast
Yields: 8 servings
Ingredients
  • 15 ounces bread, sliced into 1/2 inch cubes (cranberry Ciabattini if possible)
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh cranberry sauce
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
Instructions
The night before:
  1. Grease casserole dish with butter. Place half the bread in the dish. Add a layer of fresh cranberry sauce and dot with cream cheese. Cover with remaining bread.
  2. In separate bowl, whisk eggs, milk, and vanilla. Pour over bread mixture. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate over night.
The morning of:
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown.
  3. Top with pure maple syrup or dust with powdered sugar.

 

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Cranberry Pear Moscato

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This refreshing and delicious Cranberry Pear Moscato is the quintessential cocktail this holiday season.

Cranberry Pear Moscato | Self Proclaimed Foodie

I loved this little cocktail for so many reasons.  First off, it just looks cool.  Any kind of multi-layer or interesting looking drink ranks high in my book. Plus, throw a sprig of fresh rosemary in anything and I’ll probably love it.  Second, this drink is easy to make for a crowd.  I only made enough for four drinks because there are two drinkers in my household, and that math just about adds up. But if you’re entertaining a crowd, this cocktail is fantastic.  Third, you can’t get much more festive than a drink like this around the holidays.

Cranberry Pear Moscato | Self Proclaimed Foodie

But most importantly, this drink tastes amazing. If you’ve never had Moscato, its a sweet and refreshing wine and from what I’ve read, its made from the Muscat grape. That is the extent of my knowledge in its entirety. I’m no expert on wine and certainly not on Moscato, but there was a wide variety to choose from at the store. I chose a pinkish one because I thought it looked pretty (seriously) and one that was sparkling.

 

 

Cranberry Pear Moscato | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Quite possibly the best part about this cocktail is that you can use your rosemary to mix it up. Not only does it give the slightest bit extra rosemary flavor, but its fun to use a baby tree branch to stir your drink.

Cranberry Pear Moscato | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Cranberry Pear Moscato
 
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This refreshing and delicious Cranberry Pear Moscato is the quintessential cocktail this holiday season.
Author:
Recipe type: cocktail
Yields: 4 glasses
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1/2 cup fresh pear, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cups (16 ounces) ounces Moscato d'Asti wine
  • 4 six inch sprigs fresh rosemary
Instructions
Recipe can easily be increased to serve a crowd. Just make sure you have equal amounts of cranberries and pears plus enough fresh rosemary sprigs for each glass.
  1. In a small saucepan, cook cranberries and pears over low heat with the lid on. Stir every five minutes or so and mash up the berries and pear as much as possible. Cook until fruit is extremely soft, about 15-20 minutes. Press fruit through a fine mesh sieve and discard solids. Chill until ready to use.
  2. To serve, divide cranberry pear puree evenly among 4 champagne glasses, taking care not to get it on the sides of the glasses. Pour in chilled Moscato. Add a sprig of rosemary to each glass. Serve immediately.

 

This refreshing and delicious Cranberry Pear Moscato is the quintessential cocktail this holiday season.
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