5 Holiday Desserts | Easy Entertaining

5 Holiday Desserts | Easy Entertaining

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Candy Cane Cheesecakes
1 cup crushed shortbread or sugar cookies
3 tbsp cup melted butter
1 cup cream cheese, at room temperature
½ cup icing sugar
1 cups heavy cream
1 tsp peppermint extract
Red food colouring (optional)
¼ cup candy cane dust (crushed candy canes)
mini candy canes for garnish

In a small bowl, mix together crushed cookies and melted butter. Place a few spoonfuls of each into a serving dish and press down. Set aside. Using an electric mixer, in a large bowl, whip together cream cheese, icing sugar, whipping cream, and peppermint extract until light and fluffy. If using, add a few drops of red food colouring and mix well. Spoon cream cheese mixture into each serving dish and allow to set in the refrigerator for at least an hour. Once set, top with candy cane dust, whipped cream and baby candy canes.

Nutella Tree
2 store bought puff pastry sheets
½ cup Nutella
1 egg, beaten for egg wash

Place a sheet of puff pastry onto a piece of parchment. Spread Nutella onto one of the puff pastry sheets. Top with the second puff pastry sheet, sandwiching in the Nutella. Cut a rough shape of a pine tree into the dough and cut 1-inch horizontal lines on either side of the tree, going all the way to the top. Do not cut straight through where the trunk of the tree will be. Twist each 1-inch piece and brush the exposed pastry with egg wash. Transfer tree to a baking sheet. Bake at 400ºF until golden and pastry has risen, about 15-20 minutes.

Eggnog Cupcakes
1 box vanilla cake mix
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
½ cup vegetable oil, depending on your boxed cake recipe
3 eggs, depending on your boxed cake recipe
1 cup eggnog, depending on boxed cake recipe

2 cups vanilla buttercream http://bit.ly/1OaU5BP
2 tbsp eggnog
1 tsp rum extract

In a large bowl, whisk cake mix with nutmeg and cinnamon. Add the oil, eggs and eggnog. Scoop batter into a lined muffin tray and bake at 350ºF according to package directions. To make the icing, add eggnog and rum extract into the buttercream. Once cooled, ice each cupcake with buttercream and top with a light grating of fresh nutmeg.

Pie Crust Cookies
2 store bought pie crust
¼ cup melted butter
¼ cup sugar
2 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 egg, beaten for egg wash
½ cup icing sugar
1-2 tbsp milk or cream

In a small bowl, mix together butter, sugar and cinnamon. Spread mixture over pie crust and roll up to form a log. If you have time, chill your dough in the refrigerator for at least an hour. Cut ¼-inch slices and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Brush with egg wash and bake at 375ºF until golden, about 7-9 minutes. To make the glaze, whisk the icing sugar with the milk until smooth. If you find your glaze is too runny, add a bit more icing sugar. If you find the glaze is too thick, add another splash of milk or cream. Drizzle each cookie with glaze and allow to set slightly before serving.

Salted Caramel Chocolate Pecan Cookies
1 package store-bought chocolate chip cookie dough
½ cup chopped pecans
12-18 caramels
Crystal sea salt to taste

Shape cookie dough into 1-inch balls and roll in pecans. Arrange onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Press a caramel into the center of each. Bake at 350ºF until edges are golden and caramel has melted, about 8 minutes. Sprinkle each cookie with a little bit of crystal sea salt. Caramel is extremely hot. Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before enjoying.


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