Spring by Kathryn White

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Decorating and Indulging in the Beauty

The sky is a silvery blue with the sun shining on glittering snow, as I begin my day. I plan to do some shopping today, and as a family we will decorate the tree this evening.
Speaking of decorating, I wanted to share some photos that have been taken recently, both at the wedding of my friend's daughter, as well as at a Christmas luncheon we enjoyed yesterday with the staff in the Wellington County.
My friend
S gave me permission to share as I really wanted you to see the gorgeous decorating they did to transform a community hall into a spectacular venue. She also hand-made the most beautiful chocolate truffles and instead of wedding cake, had the truffles displayed in tiered fashion on a round table to be indulged during the evening...it was all so lovely.

She was also kind enough to share her recipes with me and allowed me to in turn share them with you. When I go out this morning on my shopping errands, I plan to pick up the ingredients to make my own truffles for an upcoming event. Oh, I do hope they turn out as elegant and gorgeous as hers did:)

Peanut Butter Snowballs
1 cup confectioners sugar
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
3 tbsp butter, softened
1 pound white confectionery coating
In a mixing bowl. combine sugar, peanut butter and butter; mix well. Shape into 1 inch balls and place on a waxed paper lined cookie sheet. Chill for 30 minutes or until firm. Meanwhile, melt the white coating in a double boiler or microwave safe bowl. Dip balls and place on wax paper to harden.
Yield 2 dozen

Mocha Truffles
2 pkgs semisweet chocolate chips ( 12 oz each)
1 pkg (8oz) cream cheese , softened
3 tbsp instant coffee granules
2 tsp water
1 pound dark chocolate confectionery coating
white confectionery coating ( optional)
In a microwave - safe bowl or double boiler, melt chocolate chips. Add cream cheese, coffee and water; mix well. Chill until firm enough to shape. Shape into 1 inch balls and place on a waxed paper lined cookie sheet. Chill for 1-2 hours or until firm. Melt chocolate coating in microwave - safe bowl or double boiler. Dip balls and place on waxed paper to harden. If desired, melt white coating and drizzle over truffles. Yield 5 1/2 dozen

Chocolate Almond Truffles
1/2 cup heavy whipped cream
3 1/2 tbsp sweet butter
8 oz semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 tsp almond flavouring or 1/4 cup Amaretto liqueur
Finely ground toasted almonds, chocolate sprinkles, chopped shredded coconut, cocoa powder or confectioners sugar for coating
In medium saucepan, heat cream and butter over medium high heat, stirring until butter melts and mixture comes just to a boil. Remove pan from heat; add chocolate and stir until completely melted. Stir in flavouring/liqueur. Cover, placing paper towels between lid and saucepan to absorb moisture. if desired. Chill at least 3 hours, stirring three to four times as mixture cools and thickens. Remove about 1 1/2 tsp at a time and roll into balls. Roll balls in choice of coating. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Store in refrigerator. Yield 3 1/2 dozen

There are four basic food groups: milk chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate, and chocolate truffles.
~Author Unknown

And at our Christmas luncheon yesterday, we were greeted at the door with this tall 20 ft tree decorated with the prettiest ornaments and ribbons.

Each table had a lovely centerpiece that would be easy to group together, but looked so elegant:
And everyone who knows me, knows that I have a weakness
(yes, I admitted it) for desserts. I love creating/baking my own, but even more so, I love sampling what other people create. These were all just so decadent that selecting a dessert was a difficult decision to make...

I ended up choosing the Turtle Pecan Cheesecake, and my friend chose the Peppermint Mousse Cheesecake, both of which were truly wonderful.

Now that my coffee is done, it is time to head out to get my shopping list completed.
Have an awesome Saturday everyone and remember in the busyness of this season to take time to reflect on one of the most important gifts you can give to family, friends and those you encounter: