Monday, December 22, 2014

Hot Cocoa Bar


Christmas is just around the corner and I'm sure almost everyone has a few more holiday parties to attend or host.  Last week I shared some of my new favorite party appetizers and this week I thought we could all use something sweet and super simple to make.  


A hot cocoa bar is the perfect way to really get into the Christmas spirit and if your Elf on the Shelf is running out of ideas here's something that the whole family can enjoy.  All you need is a great hot cocoa recipe, some whipped cream, cookies to dip and a few fun toppings.  Oh, and don't forget your PJ's and a good movie.  Also, if you haven't checked out Conflicted Pixie's Little Play Furniture you definitely should!  Her beautifully handmade play tents make a wonderful gift and would be the perfect place for your little ones to enjoy their hot cocoa and cookies!


So whether you are hosting a fancy holiday fete or needing some quiet quality family time a little hot cocoa will be sure to keep everyone warm during this holiday season!



Gingersnap S'mores 


Ingredients
40 small gingersnap cookies (I use Trader Joe's triple ginger cookies)
60 mini marshmallows
6-8 ounces chocolate chips
1-1/2 teaspoons vegetable shortening

Preheat the oven to broil.

Place 20 gingersnap cookies, flat side up, on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.  Place 3 mini marshmallow on top of each cookie.  Place in the oven under the broiler for about 1 minute.  Watch the marshmallows carefully so that they don't burn.  It only takes a few seconds for them to go from golden brown to burnt.  Remove the cookies from the oven and top with the remaining 20 cookies, gently pressing down to seal.

Place the chocolate chips and shortening in a double broiler or a heat proof bowl over a sauce pan filled with water over medium heat.  Stir chocolate and shortening until completely melted and smooth.  Remove from the burner.  Carefully dip the cookies halfway into the chocolate and return them to the parchment paper lined baking sheet.  Place the cookies in the refrigerator for about 25 minutes to set the chocolate.  Serve immediately or store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.  Makes 20 cookies.

Peppermint Marshmallow Pops


Ingredients 
10 candy canes, tops removed
10 marshmallows
6-8 ounces chocolate chips
1-1/2 teaspoons vegetable shortening
1/4 cup red sprinkles or crushed candy canes

Place the chocolate chips and shortening in a double broiler or a heat proof bowl over a sauce pan filled with water over medium heat.  Stir chocolate and and shortening until completely melted and smooth.  Remove from the burner.  Carefully dip the marshmallows halfway into the chocolate then into the sprinkles or crushed candy canes.  Place the marshmallow pops on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and place in the refrigerator for about 25 minutes allowing the chocolate to set.  Insert candy canes into the center to the marshmallows. Enjoy immediately or store in an airtight container for up to 2 days.  Makes 10 pops.  


Hot Cocoa Bar Extras

Peanut Butter Cup and Rolo pops
Candy Canes
Whipped cream
Caramel sauce
Cinnamon sticks
Chocolate Jimmys
Adults only: Bailey's, Kahlua, or Frangellico