Wednesday, December 10, 2008

'TIS THE SEASON TO BE JOLLY' ~ CHAMPAGNE-POMEGRANATE COCKTAIL / SWEET & SPICY NUTS / CRANBERRY BREAD PUDDING

'Tis the Season to be jolly,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.


~ Jolly ol' souls on the Christmas tree
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CHAMPAGNE-POMEGRANATE COCKTAIL

8 oz. champagne or sparkling chilled wine

2 Tbsp. pomegranate juice

1 cube turbinado sugar or

1 rock candy stirrer

Place sugar cube in champagne flute (or rock candy stirrer); add 2 Tbsp. pomegranate juice and 8 oz. Champagne or sparkling wine. Serve immediately. Both will dissolve adding a tad of sweetness. (1 serving)

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SWEET & SPICY NUTS
1 lb. fancy pecan halves
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp. honey
1 Tbsp. water
10 Tbsp. Turbinado 'sugar in the raw' sugar
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1/8-1/4 tsp. cayenne
1/2 tsp. coarse salt
  • Preheat oven to 350-degrees.
  • Warm honey & water ~ do not allow to boil. Mix well and cool to room temperature.
  • In small bowl, combine 1/2 cup Turbinado sugar and spices.
  • In large bowl, combine honey mixture & nuts. Toss well until nuts are thoroughly coated and no honey syrup remains in bottom of bowl.
  • Toss nuts quickly and thoroughly with sugar and spice mix. Spread nut mixture on parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and separate nuts wit spoon (they will clump together as sugar begins to melt). Sprinkle with remaining 2 Tbsp. of raw sugar. Continue baking 5-7 minutes more until nuts are browned and crystallized.
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CRANBERRY BREAD PUDDING
~ From pastry chef Gale Gand of Chicago (clipped from Detroit Free Press)
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6 oz. (1-inch slices) French or Italian bread
1 stick softened butter
1 cup sugar
4 eggs
1 cup whipping cream
3/4 cup half & half
1 Tbsp. pure vanilla extract
1 cup fresh cranberries
powdered sugar
  • Heat oven to 350-degrees.
  • Cut bread into 1-inch cubes. Place on baking sheet. Bake until cubes are lightly toasted, about 10 minutes.
  • In medium mixing bowl, mix butter & sugar until light and creamy. Beat in eggs, one at at time.
  • Beat in cream, half & half and vanilla. Divide cranberries among 8 6-oz. individual souffle dishes (or in 2-quart baking dish). Top with bread cubes.
  • Pour about 1/2 cup custard over bread, pressing down gently to moisten cubes. Let stand 5 minutes.
  • Set souffle dishes in large shallow pan. Place in oven. Pour enough hot water into pan to reach halfway up sided of souffle dishes.
  • Bake until tops are golden brown and puddings are set, 30-45 minutes (30-40 minutes for 2-quart dish). Cover lightly with foil if tops are browning too quickly. Remove from oven and cool souffle dishes slightly.
  • Sprinkle top with powdered sugar and serve warm. (8 servings)

14 comments:

Gail said...

Tasty! The ornaments are as cute as can be! gail

inadvertentfarmer said...

OK...just when I think I have Chrismas dinner completely planned I come here and you have yet another recipe that I must, must try! I adore, love, and crave bread pudding. Your recipe has just been added to the every growing Christmas dinner menu. Thanks so much...again! Kim

Brenda@View From The Pines said...

What sweet, whimsical faces in your montage!
Brenda

Cindy said...

I am really loving your jolly ole souls. Thanks for the smile!

Marysol said...

Joey! I love the nose on that sweet Santa!

And thanks for the yummy recipes pal; the Cranberry Bread Pudding sounds ideal for this brrrutal MI. weather.

Btw, I had to laugh at the title of your entry. I've always had a hard time with the lyrics to that Christmas carol.

'Tis the Season to be Jolly, Fa la la la la, la la la la... drank too much of old egg noggy fa la la la la...

The first line is the only one I can ever remember. I fake my way through the rest of the song. But, don't tell anybody.

spookydragonfly said...

I'll bet your Christmas tree and home are really something to see! I like that teddy bear! Martha move over!!! There's a new Domestic Goddess in town!

joey said...

Thanks Gail ~ these ornaments are old (but not as old as me ;)

Happy to tempt you, Kim! I love bread pudding also (you don't have to wait 'til Christmas ;)

Thanks Brenda ~ they are cute, aren't they?

Nothing lovelier than a smile, Cindy. We all need a bit of humor this time of year.

This crazy song has been running through my head, Marysol ~ have never heard your lyrics but definitely catchy! (I predict you'll see more of my cute Santa)

Hi Spooky K ~ I love this old house; it's very warm and cozy, especially infused with sounds and smells of the season ...

marmee said...

wow i have missed quite a few images and recipes. busy days not so much blogging but i am delighted to see all things christmass on here. beautiful shots of all your ornaments and that door with the natural garland, beautiful. happy winter and christmas season to you my friend, joey.

Bren said...

I can't wait to try that punch. Pomegranate is my favorite!

Merry Christmas - you are totally making the season merry.

God Bless dear garden friend.

joey said...

Hi dear Marmee ~ thank you. Believe me, I can appreciate how difficult it is to 'make the rounds' these days; difficult even to post. Happy holidays ... I know your home is jolly & bright!

Cheers, dear Bren! Enjoy these lovely merry days. I think we all 'need a little Christmas'!

Tyra in Vaxholm said...

Hi Joey, :-) how very many nice looking fellows you got! Got to try the sweet and spice nuts...yummie/ Tyra

New Post from Tyra - Leufstabruk

joey said...

Thanks Tyra ~ love the funny little ol' faces ... memorable for the kids growing up, who liked to hide the little white guy called 'Pocket Man' in the tree.

inadvertentfarmer said...

Joey, I made the bread pudding last night. I doubled the recipe and added extra cranberries and I must say it was every bit as yummy as I had hoped and even more beautiful!

Now about not fitting into my jeans, lol!

Thanks for sharing, Kim

joey said...

So glad you liked it, Kim ~ exactly as I do when I double recipes ... add a bit more of whatever turns you on ... that's what good cooks do! Now about the jeans ... I can't help ... wondering myself about my 'muffin top' :)