Verily Valentines – Eleven Delectable Chocolate Recipes

Pink Thumbprint Cookies with Whiskey Ganache

Pink Thumbprint Cookies with Whiskey Ganache

 

Valentines Day has always been a favorite holiday for me. Even when I was single, I’d grab another unattached friend or two and have a friend date. One year, I was the third wheel to my close friends night out – we had a great time!

Valentines means even more now. As most of you know, Jason and I got married last September, in what is one of the most fun weekends I have ever had. We have a bit of a secret, though – only our very close friends and family knew that last year on Valentines Day? We got married.

Yep.

It was a …

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Vanilla Whiskey Ice Cream with Raspberry Sauce

Double Vanilla Whiskey Ice Cream with Raspberry Sauce

Good to know people are totally in support of Whiskey Week!

Perhaps each month should start this way… January could be Irish Cream Week, and we can all just add it to our coffees each morning?

Whiskey Week

At any rate, Whiskey Week continues, and I am bringing in a creamy cool concoction – ice cream is not just for summertime around here. Oh if you only saw the inside of my freezer right now…

This is a spiked spin on the classic vanilla bean flecked cream – simplicity at its finest. and I just love those vanilla bean flecks.

Double Vanilla Whiskey Ice Cream

These recipes use a 10 year straight rye whiskey – WhistlePig.

I like this one – I like rye in general – because it is milder than some others we have. Jason is a fan of what I call …

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Salted Caramel Bourbon Bonbons

Salted Caramel Bourbon Bonbons

Happy December and Happy Holidays!

I am kicking off the holiday festivities with Whiskey Week – all week we are talking bourbon, scotch, all things whiskey in cocktails and recipes. There are some tasty things made with our favorite spirits, from drinks to sweets to savory foods to… drinks!

Whiskey Week

 

First up, one of my favorite sweets to make – truffles! These were dragged through the snowy garden, to give them a festive wintery white coat. Chocolately sweet with just a hint of salted caramel, these always go quick from the party table.

Salted Caramel Bourbon Truffles

 

I am joining the holiday festivities today over at Keepin’ It Kind, where my friend Kristy is hosting a Vegan Cookie Swap Party!

Come on over, say hello and see my recipe for Salted Caramel Bourbon Bonbons.

Cheers!

 

 

Piña Colada Cheesecake Bars

Piña Colada Cheesecake Bars

I am way too excited about this recipe.

because of THIS:

Coco Whip

So Delicious recently released a coconut based whip topping, and it is good. I was able to preview a bunch of their new product and holiday seasonal items (fun stuff coming soon!), and this Coco Whip is what I was most excited about. You can find this in stores now. I have two tubs for this week alone.

Before this even landed on my doorstep, I knew exactly what I would make.

Piña Colada Dessert Bars

Growing up, our holiday table always included a jello salad.

Now, I have that same question many ask – why is this called salad?

Whatever it was originally called, back then it was my favorite. I have updated the original recipe from my Grandma Z, adding a pretzel shortbread crust and … well I don’t call it salad.

The main ingredients of a …

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Bumbleberry Cobbler

Bumbleberry Cobbler

Among my vast and treasured collection of cookbooks, I have every single cookbook that Julie Hasson has created. I love them all. As of a few years ago, I am lucky to call her a friend as well. Julie is local to Portland, and I am lucky to see her from time to time (we still need to have our lunch, Julie!).

In addition to the successes of her fabulous baking mixes, Julie’s most recent project has been all about casseroles. You know I love comfort food, and this book has it – to the max.

Yep, to the max. I am so excited about this book that I reverted back to the 80’s for that one. I was incredibly honored when asked to share her new book, a recipe, and a great giveaway for a Breville Smart Oven (giveaway at end of post).

Vegan Casseroles – Pasta Bakes, Gratins, Pot Pies, and More:

Vegan Casseroles

From Caramelized Onion Dip and Loaded Nacho Fries to a Truffled Cauliflower Mac and a Creamy Spinach Florentine, Julie has you covered on …

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Pumpkin Bread with Salted Pepitas

Pumpkin Bread with Salted Pepitas – sweet and soft pumpkin bread meets crunchy salty pepitas! This bread is great for snacking, breakfast, and cross-country road trips!

 

Pumpkin Bread with Salted Pepitas @spabettie

It is officially fall!

Autumn?

Whatever – it is time for boots and sweaters and tights and scarves and boots! It is time for warming, comfort foods, it is time for all things pumpkin.

But… I sorta have pumpkin year round, and am not really a fan of pumpkin in my coffee.
*ducks head*

I suppose what I am saying is that I never really go overboard with the pumpkin.

But. I did make you a loaf of pumpkin bread. Actually, two. Perfectly sweet, with a salty seeded topping. That’s the kicker for me – I have always loved pumpkin bread, and now I will think all pumpkin breads need the salty addition.

It is good.

Honeymoon update! This week, our road trip finds us in the Black Hills and the Badlands. Yesterday we …

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Fruit Stripe Pops

Fruit Stripe Pops – a sweet and tart combination of layers, with fresh watermelon and tart green apple flavor – keeps you cool and Spark gives you a bit of a boost!

 

Watermelon Apple Fruit Stripe Pops

Portland’s late summer has been a hot one – on our wedding day, we were on the Departure rooftop deck in 98 degree temperatures. We took photos quickly, and joked about taking the next photos in the restaurant walk in…

The heat has continued through our first two weeks of honeymoon – vacation, which has been great while we’ve been out playing in our own city before we travel. We have been enjoying some lake side happy hours on warm evenings, complete with awesome kombucha flights.

My all time favorite …

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Passionfruit Cheesecake with Pretzel Shortbread Crust

Passionfruit Cheesecake with Shortbread Pretzel Crust

I woke up this morning and made a cheesecake. Then I had a piece for breakfast.

I haven’t made a cheesecake in a while. This one is a birthday cake.

Happy Birthday, Dad.

Since Dad grew up in Hawaii and loved all things tropical, I made this for him. Today I will …

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