Happy Thanksgiving

Thinking of you, as I get ready for Thanksgiving …

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One of my favorite recipes for Thanksgiving: Orange Carrot Soup.

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… and another Bordeaux Cranberry Compote.

 

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Don’t forget festive libations, including for designated drivers. This is my Black Tea Sangria, served over ice, with apple slices, mandarin orange slices, and frozen raspberries, then topped off with tonic water. I’m still looking for a good name for this mocktail. Have any suggestions?

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Don’t forget to spend a little time in nature to get away from the hustle and bustle for preparing for the holdiays…

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May everyone travel safely…

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Warmest wishes to you for a most lovely holiday season!

Blood Orange Lemonade for the Season(s)

I  usually think of lemonade as a summer libation, but we have been having unseasonably warm weather and the citrus fruits at the market have been so good, that making lemonade in the middle of winter seemed like a brilliant idea. So with a bag of lemons and a bag of blood oranges in the ‘fridge, I was all set. Yum, yum! Oh, and it is so pretty.

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Blood Orange Lemonade

1 1/2 c. fresh squeezed blood orange juice

1 1/2 c. fresh squeezed lemon juice*

1 c. raw sugar (turbinado sugar)

4 c. cold water

Pour the juices into a 2-qt. glass pitcher. Combine the sugar and water in a medium size pot and heat, stirring frequently until sugar is completely dissolved. Carefully pour syrup in juice blend.* Stir. Chill until serving. Serve over ice.

*If you are worried about the relative strength or sweetness of your lemonade, you can add the syrup in stages, tasting along the way.

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Cheers to you!

In season or not, we’re enjoying Blood Orange Lemonade at The Morning Star today!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Seasons.

Happy New Year’s Eve (with a Mocktail & a Cocktail)

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Wishing all of my followers a healthy, happy, and inspiring 2015!

Here is a mocktail recipe and a cocktail recipe as we get ready to celebrate, with thanks, all of the good things in the year that has passed – and to toast, with joy and hopefulness, the year to come.

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Berry Happy New Year (Mocktail)

Place a scoop of raspberry sorbet in the bottom of a Champagne glass. Add 3 fresh black berries. Top with flavored sparkling water.

Enjoy!

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Sgroppino

Place a scoop of lemon sorbet and of limoncello sorbet in the bottom of a Champagne Glass.* Add a splash of vodka and top off with Prosecco. Enjoy!

• Sgroppini are traditionally made with lemon sorbet, vodka and Processco, but since I always make limoncello sorbet around the holidays – when I make homemade limoncello – I like to add a little limoncello sorbet to my Sgroppini. Sgroppini can also be blended for a slushy drink.

Happy New Year’s Eve! Happy New Year to Everyone!

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If you entertain for New Year’s Eve, please make sure that no one who drinks will be driving.

Candy Cane Hot Chocolate

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When shopping recently, I found these Snowman Marshmallows and could’t wait to make a special hot chocolate to go with them. For this recipe I used Ghirardelli Bittersweet Chocolate, Hershey’s Chocolate Mint Candy Canes and Peeps Marshmallows. “Hmmm, yum!” My company and I enjoyed our hot chocolate and cookies.

Candy Cane Hot Chocolate

Makes 3 servings

4.5 oz. bittersweet chocolate, broken into pieces

1/4 c. candy cane pieces (about 3 candy canes broken into pieces)

12 oz. boiling water

4 oz. half and half

whipped cream for garnish

shaved chocolate for garnish

whole candy canes for garnish

marshmallows for garnish, optional

Place chocolate and candy cane pieces in a small non-stick pan. Pour boiling water over chocolate and candy canes. Stir. Turn low heat on under pan. Whisk chocolate mixture until smooth. Whisk in half-and-half and continue to heat mixture until hot, but not boiling. Meanwhile,  assemble ingredients for garnishing. Carefully ladle into serving cups and garnish. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

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Related Recipes:

Chocolat Chaud Recipe

Spiced Mexican Wedding Cookies

Have a great day!

Blueberry Mint Iced Tea

June is National Iced Tea Month … perfect timing for warm weather refreshment! Flavored iced teas are easy to make and a are a great way to add personal flair to this summertime beverage for entertaining.

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Blueberry Mint Iced Tea

8 c. cold water

6 bags of good black tea (decaf. ok)

3/4 c. loosely packed fresh mint leaves, washed

3/4 c. raw sugar

7 cups ice cubes

3 c. fresh blueberries (or mixture of blueberries and blackberries), washed and stemmed

Frozen blueberries and ice cubes for serving

Lemon slices for serving

Fresh mint for garnish

 

Directions

1. Bring water to boil in a 4-quart pot. Add tea bags, mint leaves and sugar. Cover pot and remove from heat. Allow to steep for 20 minutes. Stir to make sure that sugar is completely dissolved.

2. Place 7 c. ice cubes into a 1-gallon pitcher. Strain tea into pitcher.

3. Place berries in a food processor and pulse until puréed. Press puree through sieve into tea. Stir until ice is completely dissolved and  purée is incorporated into the tea.

4. To serve, fill glasses with ice cubes, frozen blueberries and lemon slices. Pour tea over ice. Garnish with mint.

Enjoy!

More iced tea recipes …

Black Tea “Sangria recipe.

Iced Minted Orange Juice recipe.

Mint Simple Syrup recipe for adding to iced tea.

Decadent Iced Coffee

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Iced coffee is a truly summertime treat – cold, delicious, and easy to make. Be sure to use good brewed coffee.  Serve for dessert or as an afternoon treat. Enjoy! Have a wonderful weekend!

Start with coffee ice cubes.

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Pour in cold coffee.

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Top with whipped cream, flavored if you like. Then sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. If you are in the mood to really indulge, stir in some of the cream, then add some more! (Top photo.)

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Valentines’ Mocha

A special after-dinner coffee made with dark chocolate and chocolate vodka. Don’t forget to dip your strawberry in the whipped cream before drinking! Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Valentines’ Mocha (serves 2)

1 c. fresh-brewed, good decaf coffee

1 oz. dark chocolate

1 oz. chocolate vodka

1 T. dark brown sugar

1/4 c. heavy cream

2 large, ripe strawberries (cleaned and stemmed)

cinnamon sugar

1. Place coffee, chocolate, vodka and dark brown sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir occasionally until chocolate and brown sugar are melted and blended into the coffee.

2. Meanwhile, whip cream until it holds soft peaks.

3. Pour coffee into two glass coffee mugs. Garnish mugs with strawberries. Top with whipped cream and cinnamon sugar. Serve immediately. Enjoy!