Winter Chocolates

4 habanero peppers
1 stick butter
1 lb. chocolate
cocoa powder

Remove the seeds and stems from the peppers. Chop them lightly and let them cook in the butter for about an hour. Strain, pressing the flesh through. Throw away the skins. Melt the chocolate in the butter. In a chocolate mould, sprinkle nibs. Pour in the melted chocolate and freeze until solid. Pop out the chocolates and dust with cocoa powder.

Yule Cake

This is the desert that my daughters and I make once a year at our Yule dinner party. We always invite the people that we spent the most time with the previous year that we wish to spend more time with in the year ahead. We serve these friends that are our chosen family a dinner of roast beef, cheesy mashed potatoes, roasted brussle sprouts, and apple walnut salad. After dinner, when everyone has a cup of egg nog, we turn off every light and honor the darkness. We then we light many candles to bring back the light. We toast the year that has passed and raise our cups with our wishes for the future. Then, we serve the yule cake. The yule cake is chocolate ladyfingers layered with bright red whipped cream with an almond on top. The brown represents the world tree, the red is to herald the sun, and the almond on top is for luck.

Recipe makes 5 cakes. Preheat oven to 325. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Beat until light:
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 t. vanilla
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1 T. flour
1/8 t. salt

In a seperate bowl, beat until stiff but not dry:
4 egg whites
1/2 t. cream of tartar

Fold the two together. Pipe into 2″ rounds on the cookie sheet, about 1/4 inch thick. Bake 13-14 minutes and let cool.

3/4 c. whipping cream
1 T. sugar
red food coloring

Layer the cake with the whipped cream in 3 layers on individual plates. Dust with powdered sugar and top with a single almond.


2 c. flour
3/4 c. sugar
1 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
3/4 c. chopped almonds
1 t. vanilla (or hazelnut)

2 1/2 c. flour
2 t. baking powder
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1/2 c. chopped almonds
3 T. butter
3/4 c. sugar
1 1/2 t. vanilla (or hazlenut)
3 eggs

Preheat oven to 325. Toss together dry (not sugar) ingredients. In a separate bowl cream sugar and butter. Beat in eggs ~2 minutes. Slowly stir in dry ingredients until just combined. Turn out dough & shape into a log. Place log on cookie sheet covered in parchment paper. Press to 3/4″ tall. Bake 30-35 minuets or until firm. Remove from oven & cool 15min. Reduce oven to 275. Saw log into biscotti and place them on side on cookie sheet. Bake 30-35 min. Cool 1 1/2 hour. Drizzle with chocolate.


Mix together:
1 c. flour
1 c. wheat flour
2 t. baking powder
1/3 c. sugar
1/2 t. salt

Cut in:
5 T. cold butter

Stir in:
1/4 c. dried fruit, chopped
1/4 c. chopped nuts

Beat in a seperate bowl:
2 eggs

Reserve 2 T. of eggs. Mix the rest into the flour mixture. Pat into a square about 3/4 inch thick. Cut into 4 (or 8 for smaller scones) triangles. Place on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush tops with reserved egg. Sprinkle with cinnamon & sugar. Bake at 450 for 15 minutes.

Vanilla Cheesecake

5 pkgs. cream cheese
2/3 c. sugar
1/3 c. buttermilk
2 T. flour
5 eggs
1 T. vanilla
1 T. lemon juice

Cream together cream cheese, sugar, and buttermilk. Add eggs one at a time; beat slowly until lumps are almost gone. Bake at 350 for one hour. Chill in fridge for at least 4 hours.

Spicy Peanut Noodle

1/4 c. soy sauce
2 t. crushed red pepper
1 t. honey
1/2 c. peanut butter
1 T. vermouth
1 t. pressed garlic
1 T. sesame oil
1/2 T. dry ginger
1/3 c. cream of coconut

Mix together and pour over:
1/2 lb. of cooked linguine
1/2 c. chopped peanuts
3 chopped radishes
1 chopped stalk of celery
2-3 chopped green onions


Peanut Butter Cookies

1 1/2 c. peanut butter
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. shortening
1 t. vanilla
2 eggs
2 1/2 c. flour
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
1/4 c. nibs
1/4 c. chopped nuts

Preheat oven to 350. Cream butters and sugars, Whisk eggs and vanilla. Mix dry ingredients. Add in alternate batches. Fold in nuts and nibs, Bake for about 15 minutes.