With cherries dipped in chocolate for bodies, and Hershey kisses for heads, these little Christmas mice can fill a party tray or be wrapped as individual treats. The mouse pictured was posted by thewednesdaybaker.blogspot.com. Photo by: thewednesdaybaker.blogspot.com
November 29, 2017 11:11:23 AM
November isn't even quite out the door, and here I am touting Christmas goodies. My rule of waiting until we flip the calendar to December to talk of Yuletide has fallen to an onslaught. The past few days' parade of holiday TV programming, round-the-clock holiday radio, the Columbus tree lighting and one Golden Triangle parade already behind us have hurried things along. Plus, the aforementioned calendar reveals it's only three and a half weeks 'til Christmas. Yikes.
So here we are, scouting around for simple ideas to help time-strapped elves. Some may be hosts planning a luncheon or party, others are parents making something for the classroom or neighbors wanting to share a touch of cheer. One was a teacher who posted at geniuskitchen.com, where the Christmas Mice recipe comes from. She made a mouse for each of her students. She placed each chocolatey critter on half an opened double-stuffed Oreo -- "snow" -- then placed it in a white muffin paper. Each little mouse was then wrapped in Saran wrap and tied off with ribbon.
Strawberry Santas are billed as being especially easy. The recipe calls for whipped cream, but icing or cream cheese would work, too, and would probably travel better, if you're not serving these at home. Be sure to keep Santa cool until serving.
Both the young and young at heart can enjoy whimsical Rudolph cookies. The recipe says use halved gumdrops for the nose, but red M&Ms could do the job, too. And because every holiday gathering should have a suitably special beverage, below is also a recipe for an apple spice punch made with cloves and cinnamon -- aromas to add to the ambiance.
Yes, it may still be November, but the calendar waits for no one. Embrace the season ahead, simplify where possible and savor what comes.
CHOCOLATE CHRISTMAS MICE
Time: 30 minutes
Makes 2 pounds of mice
1 pound cherries, with stems
1 pound Hershey chocolate kiss
Semi-sweet chocolate chips, for melting
Icing or red-hot candies (for eyes and nose)
1 dozen strawberries
1 cup whipped cream
Handful of chocolate sprinkles
Time: 30 minutes
1 (16 1/2 ounce) package refrigerated sugar cookie dough
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup vanilla frosting
64 small pretzel twists
64 semi-sweet chocolate chips (about 1/4 cup)
16 gumdrops, cut in half
(Source: geniuskitchen.com/French Tart)
APPLE SPICE PUNCH
Time: 17 minutes
1 1/2 liters apple juice (not from concentrate)
8 whole cloves
2 cinnamon sticks, snapped in half
1 pinch ground allspice
1/4 cup apple, crisps (to garnish) (optional)
Jan Swoope is the Lifestyles Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.