"Christmas Eve was a night of song that wrapped itself about you like a shawl. But it warmed more than your body. It warmed your heart ... filled it, too, with melody that would last forever."
~ A treat for the whole family
1 tsp. whole cloves
3 broken cinnamon sticks
1 (48-oz) bottle cranberry juice
1 (48-oz) bottle apple juice
1 (6-oz) can thawed frozen lemonade
2/3 cup water
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1 (33.8 oz.) bottle ginger ale
- Tie cloves and cinnamon in cheesecloth bag or use tea ball.
- Combine cranberry juice and next 6 ingredients and spice bag/ball in large pot; bring to boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes. Uncover and simmer another 20 minutes. Discard spice bag/ball. Add ginger ale and warm until hot.
- Serve in mug with apple wedge and a few cranberries.
CRANBERRY APPLE FRENCH TOAST
~ Make ahead Christmas Brunch favorite loosely (adding way more fat and tweaks) adapted from Cooking Light 2007
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
2 diced tart apples
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
dash of ground cloves
1/2 cup packed brown sugar, divided
1 loaf challah or French bread, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 cup dried cranberries
2 cups whole milk or half & half
1 cup whole berry cranberry sauce (preferable homemade)
1 tsp. grated lemon zest
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
6 lightly beaten organic eggs
1/2 cup toasted sliced almonds
- Preheat oven to 250-degrees.
- Melt butter in skillet over medium heat. Add apples, cinnamon and cloves; cook 10 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring frequently. Stir in 2 Tbsp. brown sugar; cook 2 minutes or until sugar melts. Remove from heat.
- Place bread cubes on jelly-roll pan and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven.
- Arrange bread cubes in buttered casserole or 13x9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray, sprinkle cranberries evenly over and top with apple mixture.
- Combine milk/half &half, cranberry sauce, lemon rind, nutmeg and lightly beaten eggs with whisk. Pour egg mixture over bread mixture. Sprinkle with remaining brown sugar, cover and refrigerate overnight.
- Remove casserole from refrigerate and preheat oven to 350-degrees. Sprinkle with almonds and bake for about 55 minutes or until golden. (12 servings)
~ Christmas pretty ... mix & match favorites as desired
4 sliced bananas
1/4 cup orange juice
2 cups favorite seasonal citrus
(oranges, tangerines, or clementine sections)
1 cup halved fresh strawberries
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 cup whipped whipping cream
2 Tbsp. toasted flaked coconut
fresh mint sprigs
- Toss bananas in orange juice; drain and reserve juice. Layer orange sections, bananas, and strawberries in serving dish (either deep or in rows). Cover and chill.
- Combine mayonnaise, sugar and reserved orange juice; fold in whipped cream. Spoon mixture over fruits and sprinkle with toasted coconut and sprigs of fresh mint. (6-8 servings)
~ Many faces of 'Bloomfield Village' Santa