28 December 2010
12th Day of Christmas
The first is chocolate espresso bean bark. My family is a big fan of chocolate covered espresso beans, but it's tough to get individual coated beans when you are making them at home. Bark, on the other hand, is super simple, and the taste is the same.
Start by greasing a large (but small enough to fit in your freezer) cookie sheet with vegetable or canola oil. Then spread about 1.5 cups of espresso or coffee beans in a single layer on the cookie sheet.
Stick the cookie sheet into the freezer for about 30 minutes to harden the chocolate. When it is completely hardened, remove from the freezer and pry up the bark with a knife or your fingers. I found it came up very easily.
The second little treat is something called Sparkling Cranberries. Basically I had a bunch of cranberries leftover from making the cran-apple spiced vodka and I didn't want to waste them so I looked up simple cranberry recipes and this was my favorite. It's very simple and very delicious.
Start by making a simple syrup out of 2 cups water and 2 cups sugar. Boil them together on the stove until the sugar is fully dissolved. Let cool to about room temperature.
Put 2 cups cranberries in a large tupperware. Pour the simple syrup over the cranberries, cover, and store in the fridge overnight.
The next day, drain the cranberries and toss with some granulated sugar. Let the cranberries air dry for several hours.
When the cranberries are mostly dry, toss again with granulated sugar. Repeat the tossing until the cranberries are coated.
That's all there is to it! The cranberries are slightly tart but also sweet- so yummy!