Friday, December 12, 2008

'ENJOY NATIONAL POINSETTIA DAY!' ~ POINSETTIA (COCKTAIL) / MIXED NUT SHORTBREAD

~ Poinsettia
(Euphorbia pulcherrima)
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POINSETTIA
~ Santa NEVER says "NO" ...
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1/2 oz. Triple Sec or Cointreau
3 oz. Cranberry juice
slash of orange juice
4-5 oz. champagne
cranberries
orange slices

Add chilled Cointreau or Triple Sec to cranberry juice. Add splash of orange juice. Plop 3 cranberries in champagne glass. Fill 1/2 glass with cranberry juice mixture and slowly top with champagne. Serve with orange slice. (Can also be served over cracked ice).
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MIXED NUT SHORTBREAD
~ Autumn, winter, summer or fall ... a favorite easy nibbly with cocktails
(Gourmet Aug 2006)
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1 stick soft unsalted butter
1/3 cup plus 1 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 cup flour
3/4 cup coarsely chopped salted & roasted mixed nuts
  • Preheat oven to 375-degrees.
  • Stir together butter and 1/3 cup sugar in medium bowl until well combined. Stir in vanilla; add flour and mix with hands until a dough forms.
  • Transfer dough to lightly greased baking sheet. spread evenly with fingers to from an 8-inch square. Sprinkle nuts evenly over dough, pressing down to help them adhere.
  • Sprinkle remaining tablespoon sugar over nuts. Bake until shortbread is deep golden, 20-25 minutes.
  • Cool on baking sheet on a rack for 10 minutes. Cut into 18 (roughly 3x1 1/2-inch) bars.

December 12th is National Poinsettia Day. The day was named in honor of Joel Poinsett who died on this day in 1851, and after whom the plant is named. Joel was the First United States ambassador to Mexico and it was this gentleman who first introduced the bright red plant to his homeland. The traditionally red leaves against the bright green of the plant are a particular favorite in North American homes at Christmas time. Poinsettias now come in a variety of colors as well red as the traditional. Look for ones that are white, salmon pink, lilac or even with spots on the leaves. Occasionally blue and other colors are marketed too, but these are not natural hybrid colors, rather the plants are fed a colored dye to produce unique colors in the bracts (the colored leaves at the top of the plant).

22 comments:

Kanak Hagjer said...

Hi Joey, loved reading all the info on pointsettias. lovely set of pics too!

joey said...

Thank you, Kanak. Enjoyed my visit to your lovely site also.

marmee said...

very nice, i didn't realize we had a national poinsettia day. i like the story of joel. the cocktail sounds good.

Thanks For 2 Day said...

Hi Joey, What interesting facts about poinsettia's. Your photos are so lovely. The nut shortbread looks delicious, and the cranberry cocktail very festive:) I might even try one of them myself. Take care, Jan/ThanksFor2Day

Roses and Lilacs said...

I love the flowers and I wouldn't mid a little sip of poinsettia right now;)
Marnie

Blossom said...

What fascinating facts and history. I had no idea there was a national poinsettia day!

Amy

Marysol said...

Joey, every visit to your blog is always an educational one for me.

But I have to wonder why the Aztecs always conjured up such difficult names for everything.

Cuetlaxochitl, really?
This may not be in the history books, but I have a sneaky suspicion the Aztecs spiked their chocolate drinks on more than one occasion.

In regards to the Poinsettia drink, all I can say is, yes please!
If it's good enough for Santa, it's good enough for me.
Question, could I substitute Grand Marnier? I don't have Triple Sec or Cointreau.

Btw, your Nut Shortbread is one I'm making this Christmas as well. Thanks my friend.

Have a great weekend!

spookydragonfly said...

This was very interesting, Joey! Thanks for sharing the info. This also reminds me to go and buy a couple Poinsettias!! Love the photos!

nancybond said...

Thanks for the history lesson, Joey. :) And for the lovely photos -- the reds will always be my very favorite.

Pennie said...

I just learned about National Poinsettia Day today! Your array of pix are striking, I love the look of the red on your black background. For another pretty poinsettia picture check my blog: empty-nest.contentquake.com.

flowergardengirl said...

Mr.D said yes please for the yummy drink. I bet it's a pretty drink too. I didn't even know there was a poinsettia day.

joey said...

Fun to think of something a bit silly yet educational, Marnee ... and also a way to share many years of treasured poinsettia photos and recipes. Enjoy!

Hi Jan! It's fun to nibble a bit of sweetness when sipping! Enjoy the holidays ... fun meeting you!

Fitting for the holidays, dear Marnie! Many need a 'nip' ... wish you were near, I would join you ;)

Who knew, Amy ... a bit of 'trivial pursuit'!

Oh dear Marysol, always 'too deep for me'! But you might be right, wise one ~ perhaps the Aztecs spiked their chocolate drinks on more than one occasion and why they are no longer with us ;) Grand Marnier would certainly 'kick this cocktail up a notch'! Go for it, Cutie, and let me know (if you remember)!

Hi Spooky K. ~ I MUST have poinsettias since they speak to me of Christmas (once the holidays are over, hush, I pitch them).

Hi dear Nancy ~ I love poinsettias and these are many favorites throughout past seasons. My favorite these past few years are my cranberry poinsettias with stunning leaves.

Thanks for visiting, Pennie. I did visit and love your stunning photo ;)

Cameron (Defining Your Home) said...

I had no idea about National Poinsettia Day.

Great info.

Cameron

PS Thanks for the Fave.

Chandramouli S said...

Great info on Poinsettias. The Plant's beautiful and useful. What more could you ask for?

joey said...

Who knew, Anna! Yes, pretty and perfect (romantic) for the holiday. Make one for Mr D and let me know!

joey said...

Thanks Cameron ~ always fun to celebrate one thing or another ;)

Hello Chandramouli! I agree ... poinsettias are not only lovely but very photogenic.

joey said...

Frances, your Poinsettia tale made me chuckle! Thanks for sharing ;)

Cindy said...

So very interesting. I enjoyed learning more about this pretty plant!

jodi said...

I love poinsettias, (except for painted ones, as you know), but I don't have any yet this year. I didn't get a chance to pick any up this week when the weather was decent, ad now I'm going to be pretty out of commission til after Christmas. So unless hubby gets me one, I'll have to settle for the silk ones I have for decorating with.

joey said...

Hi Cindy ~ I learned much myself finding this info. Since not much to photograph in the garden (everything sleeping in snowy beds), do love shooting my 'indoor' plants that give me great pleasure.

Dear Jodi~ I'm with you and hate painted poinsettias, yet still see many at the nursery and farmer's market. Perhaps Santa's elf will bring you a 'real' poinsettia before Christmas. Get well soon!

inadvertentfarmer said...

Ohh I miss having those love red beauties around. I will have to wait until the little ones get a little bigger. Thanks for sharing yours! Kim

joey said...

Thank you for sharing, Kim. I love 'em and have several in different sizes around the house to enjoy during the holidays.