Tis’ the season! With just 11 days to go before Christmas, I have a few recipes and an appetizer suggestion that I would like to share with you that are perfect for the upcoming holidays and New Year’s Eve. They all include some of my favorite ingredients, Honey Crèmes from Honey Ridge Farms. I also have a giveaway for the products I have used in these recipes.
Mexican Hot Chocolate topped with homemade whipped cream. What a perfect treat to make for a chilly winter evening! If you haven’t tried Mexican Hot Chocolate, it is a lovely variation on regular hot chocolate or cocoa. The flavors are more intense and a beverage that most adults will certainly enjoy.
Some Mexican chocolates can include various spices, however, I use a Mexican chocolate from Taza which is a stone ground and organic chocolate and contains 70% cacao and raw sugar. This allows me to add a little more sweetness and some spice to the recipe. I did this with Spiced Honey Crème from Honey Ridge Farms.
This honey crème adds a wonderful subtle spiced flavor to this rich and chocolatey hot chocolate. There is a hint of cinnamon and other fall and winter spices. The freshly whipped cream finishes it beautifully. I am betting that Santa will be extra good to you if you leave a cup of this hot chocolate for him Christmas Eve! 😉
If you are looking for a new recipe for homemade Cranberry Sauce, this boozy version made with Cranberry Honey Crème is the perfect accompaniment to serve with your holiday ham or turkey. I love the flavor of the honey with the fresh cranberries and orange. The Grand Marnier adds yet another layer of flavor. I like my cranberry sauce a bit tart, so you may want to adjust the sweetness if you prefer yours a bit sweeter.
If you have never made homemade cranberry sauce, you are truly missing out. It is so easy and full of flavor (especially with a little Grand Marnier!). It’s nothing like that gelatinous stuff from the can that we were served in a disk as kids. That gave cranberry sauce a bad name and it really is so very good on its own when made from scratch. I hope you will make some before the holidays are over this year!
We always serve cheese as an appetizer when we entertain. Sometimes it is the featured appetizer and other times, it may just be one of the choices for our guests. One cheese that we have become particularly fond of is Manchego. It is a sheep’s milk cheese from the La Mancha region of Spain.
When we went to Spain two years ago, they served Manchego as a tapas drizzled with honey. We have adopted this practice in our home and love the sharpness and saltiness of the cheese paired with the sweetness of the honey.
I have found that it is particularly good when served with the Apricot Honey Crème. That combination brings out the subtle fruit flavor in the honey and goes quite well with a nice glass of wine. It is a quick and simple appetizer that will definitely be a hit with your guests this holiday season!
My friends at Honey Ridge Farms are sponsoring a holiday giveaway for one of my readers. The gift package will be a Honey Crème Trio with one of each of the honey crèmes that I have used in these recipes. The jars are 9 ounces each, so you will have lots of opportunity to see how versatile these honey crèmes can be in your own kitchen!
Here is how you enter:
***THIS GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED***
Leave me a comment telling me if you are entertaining this holiday season or if you are celebrating at your family’s or friend’s home.
Here are 2 additional ways that you can enter:
2. Follow @HoneyRidgeFarms on Twitter and become a fan of on Facebook. Leave a comment here indicating that you are now a follower and a fan. If you are already, you can leave a comment saying you are.
*** Please be sure to leave separate comments! I will count one comment as one entry. Thank you! ***
This giveaway ends at 5 pm EST on Wednesday December 21, 2011.
I will notify the winner by email. Please get back to me with your shipping information within 48 hours or I will choose another winner
Regretfully, this package can only be shipped to a winner in the Continental U.S. I apologize to my readers that live anywhere outside the U.S.
Here are some other recipes using Honey Ridge Farms products:
Mexican Hot Chocolate and Honey Grand Marnier Cranberry Sauce
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
For Mexican Hot Chocolate (1-2 servings)
2 cups whole milk
2 ounces Mexican Chocolate (I use Taza stone ground and organic)
1 tablespoons Honey Creme Spiced
Freshly whipped cream
For Honey Grand Marnier Cranberry Sauce:
1/2 cup Honey Creme Cranberry
1/4 cup water
1 package (12 ounces) fresh cranberries
1 whole orange, seeded and medium chopped (Be sure to scrub the orange well if it is not organic since you are using the peel)
3 to 4 tablespoons Grand Marnier, to taste
For Mexican Hot Chocolate:
1. Chop chocolate into small pieces. In a heavy medium saucepan, combine milk, chocolate, salt and honey cream. Heat, stirring frequently, over medium-low heat, with a whisk, until chocolate has melted and the milk is very hot, about 10 minutes.
2. Pour hot chocolate into a tall mug or 2 smaller cups. Top with freshly whipped heavy cream. Garnish with shaved chocolate. Serve Immediately.
For Honey Grand Marnier Cranberry Sauce:
1. Combine the honey creme and water in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Add the cranberries and orange. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes, or until cranberries have burst and orange pieces are tender.
2. Add the Grand Marnier, to taste, and cook a few minutes more to incorporate the flavors. Let the mixture cool. Serve at room temperature or refrigerate before serving. This is best served the same day.