All we want for Christmas is desserts!
Try these tasty yet easy holiday dessert recipes this Christmas:
1. Peppermint Oreo Truffle
- 39 regular Oreo cookies
- 1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, at room temperature
- 3/4 tsp peppermint extract
- 16 oz semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp coconut oil or vegetable oil
- 2 regular-size candy canes (finely crushed)
- Place the Oreo cookies in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Add the cream cheese and peppermint extract and pulse until the mixture is well combined and smooth.
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Scoop the mixture into balls about 1-inch in diameter.
- Place the cookie balls in the freezer until well chilled, at least 1 hour or up to 1 day.
- When cookie balls are chilled, combine the chopped chocolate and oil in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 30 second bursts, stirring between bursts, until just melted and smooth. Do not overheat.
- Drop each cookie ball into melted chocolate, coating evenly. Remove with a fork, gently tapping off excess chocolate. Place back on cookie sheet and immediately sprinkle with the crushed candy canes. Repeat with the remaining cookie balls.
- Refrigerate until set before serving. Store the truffles in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
For more info, visit Handle The Heat’s website.
2. Checkerboard Cake
- Oil (for the pans)
- 3 cups cake flour
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- Pinch of kosher salt
- 1 cup whole milk
- 6 large egg whites
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 4 tsp granulated sugar
- 4 tsp Red liquid food coloring
- 1 tsp Almond Extract
- 1/4 cup apricot jam
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 8 oz package cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Heat oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly oil two 8 1/2-by 4 1/2-inch loaf pans and line with parchment paper, leaving a 1-inch overhang on the two long sides; oil the parchment. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, egg whites and vanilla.
- Using an electric mixer beat together the butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Reduce the mixer speed to low and alternate adding the flour and milk mixtures. Transfer half the mixture (about 2 1/2 cups) to a bowl and mix in the food coloring. Add the almond extract to the remaining batter in the mixing bowl.
- Transfer each batter to a prepared pan and bake until a wooden pick inserted into the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. Let each cake cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then use the overhangs to transfer to a rack to cool completely.
- Meanwhile, make the frosting. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and cream cheese in a large bowl until smooth. Add the confectioners’ sugar and beat until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Beat in the vanilla.
- Heat the jam in a small saucepan until melted, then push through a wire mesh sieve or strainer.
- Cut the rounded tops off each cake and trim all of the sides to remove the brown edges. Cut each cake into two long strips taht are equally tall as wide (about 1 1/4-inch wide; you will have scrap pieces of cake).
- Using the apricot jam as glue, put the strips of cake together in checkerboard pattern. Spread the cream cheese frosting all over the cake.
For more info, visit Woman’s Day’s website.
3. Christmas pudding ice-cream
- 150g mixed dried fruit
- 1/2 cup brandy
- 1/2 tsp mixed spice
- 1 litre good quality vanilla icecream
- Place the dried fruit, brandy, orange zest and juice in a large bowl and allow to soak for an hour or overnight.
- Remove the icecream from the freezer and allow to soften slightly.
- Add icecream to the fruit, add the mixed spice and stir to combine.
- Cover with plastic wrap and re-freeze.
- Serve with some raspberries.
For more info, visit Kid Spot’s website.
4. Craberry, orange, & walnut layer cake
- Dry ingredients
- 12.6 oz plain flour
- 11.6 oz caster sugar
- 2 oz walnuts (ground to a powder)
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- pinch ground cardamom
- 1/2tsp salt
- 3 large eggs
- 7 oz cold unsalted butter, cubed
- 200ml whole milk + 2 tbsp fresh orange juice
- 5 oz fresh cranberries, halved if big + 1 tbsp flour
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- zest of 1 orange
(For the frosting)
- 500g full fat mascarpone
- 7 oz whipping cream
- 7 oz icing (powdered) sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- about 1/2 jar cranberry sauce to fill
- handful fresh cranberries to decorate
- 1 tbsp egg white
- 1tsp sugar
- granulated sugar to frost the cranberries
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and line your cake tins. Dust with flour.
- Grind the walnuts to a fine powder in a food processor or blender.
- Add all the dry ingredients to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed to combine.
- Add the cubed butter and mix for a couple of minutes until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
- Add the eggs, one by one, mixing well after each addition and scraping the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Gradually add the milk, vanilla extract and orange zest and beat together on low speed.
- Once the milk has been incorporated, increase the speed and mix together for a few minutes, stopping the mixer and scraping the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Toss the cranberries in the flour to coat, then fold into the batter.
- Divide the batter between the prepared tins and level. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean and the tops are firm and springy. Cool completely before frosting. You may need to level the layers before assembling the cake.
- Whip the mascarpone, vanilla and icing sugar on low speed until combined. Increase the speed and beat together until smooth.
- Gradually add the cream and whip until the frosting is smooth and you have firm peaks. Take care not to over whip. Transfer the frosting to a piping bag fitted with a plain round tip.
- Pipe a ring of frosting around the rim of the bottom layer and fill the centre with cranberry sauce. Top with the second layer and repeat. Add the final layer.
- Smooth some frosting over the top and sides of the cake. Leave some of the cake showing through to achieve the ‘naked’ cake look, or do a crumb coat then chill the cake, then add another layer of frosting and smooth over the cake.
- Use a fork to whisk 1 tbsp egg white with 1 tsp of sugar until frothy. Brush over the fresh cranberries and leave to dry slightly. Sprinkle with granulated sugar to achieve the ‘frosted’ look. Arrange over the top of the cake (do not eat!).
For more info, visit Super Golden Bakes’ website.
5. Spicy ginger cookies
- 3/4 cup margarine (softened)
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger (chopped)
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup raisins (optional)
- 2 tbsp white sugar
- Pre-heat over at 350 degrees F.
- In a large bowl, cream together the margarine and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy.
- Stir in the molasses.
- Mix the water and baking soda and stir.
- Sift together the flour, salt, and dry spices; add gradually to the sugar-margarine mixture.
- Gradually stir the sifted ingredients, along with the ginger and raisins, into the molasses mixture.
- Shape dough into walnut sized balls, and roll them in the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar. (The dough may be too soft to handle at this point. So ad a bit of flour, or refrigerating for 20 minutes, or even overnight).
- Place the cookies 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet, and flatten slightly.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes.
For more info, visit Genius Kitchen’s website.
6. Eggnog custard tart
- 225g plain flour (plus extra for dusting)
- Pinch of sea salt
- 50g caster sugar
- 150g unsalted butter (diced)
- 1 egg (lightly beaten)
- 1 egg yolk 1
- Icing sugar (to decorate)
- Ground cinnamon (to decorate)
(For eggnog custard)
- 300ml single cream
- 100ml whole milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1/3 fresh nutmeg (grated)
- 8 egg yolks
- 100g caster sugar
- 50ml spiced rum
- Mix the flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl to combine. Add the diced butter and toss together to coat in the flour. Rub the butter into the flour until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Drizzle in the beaten egg and use a knife to mix it in. Once the dough starts to form clumps, tip out onto the work surface and bring together to form a dough. Press into a disc and chill for an hour.
- To make the custard, put the cream, milk, vanilla, cinnamon stick and nutmeg into a large pan and slowly bring to a simmer. Turn off the heat, cover and allow to infuse for an hour. Put back on the heat and bring to a boil.
- Meanwhile, put the egg yolks and sugar in a large bowl and whisk together until smooth. Pour the cream mixture through a fine sieve, over the egg yolk mixture, whisking to combine. Pour in the rum and mix again.
- If bubbles appear on the surface, carefully spoon these off and discard. Heat the oven to 200 degrees C fan 180 degrees C gas. Roll out the pastry on a floured work surface to about 2-3mm thick. Drape into a 23cm loose-bottomed, shallow tart tin, pushing into the corners and trim any excess. Re-roll any excess pastry and, using star-shaped cookie cutters in a couple of different sizes, cut out as many stars as possible. Put the stars onto a baking-paper- lined baking tray and brush with a little beaten egg yolk.
- Line the tart base with a crumpled piece of baking paper and fill with baking beans or rice. Bake the base and the stars for 20 minutes, or until golden. Remove the stars, and baking paper and rice from the base and put the base back into the oven for 10 minutes or until it is lightly browned. Brush the inside of the base with beaten egg yolk and put back in the oven for a minute.
- Remove from the oven and cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 150 degrees C fan or 130 degrees C gas. Put the cooked tart case (still in the tin) onto a baking tray in the oven and carefully pour in the custard. Bake for 30-40 minutes until the custard is set around the sides but has a little wobble in the middle.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool fully before removing from the tin. Decorate the tart with the pastry stars, dust some with icing sugar, some with cinnamon and leaving some plain. (This tart is best served on the day it’s made but can be refrigerated for a day or two.)
For more info, visit Olive Magazine’s website.
7. Christmas apple pie
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 1/2 tsp granulated sugar
- 2 1/2 tbsp cold vegetable shortening
- 1/4 cup ice cold water (plus more as needed)
- 1 envelope unflavored gelatin
- 1/4 cup water
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar (divided)
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 1/4 tsp almond extract
- 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 3 egg whites
- 1/4 tsp cream of tarter
- 3/4 cup shredded coconut plus more for sprinkling over top
- 2 cups heavy cream as topping
- 2 cups fresh diced strawberries, for topping
- 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar to mix with strawberries
- To make the crust, cut the butter into pats and place flat on a plate. Place the plate in the freezer while you work on the remaining ingredients.
- In the bowl of a food processor, place flour, salt and sugar and pulse to combine. Add cold shortening and pulse a few times. Add frozen butter and pulse until the butter is pea size.
- Pulse while adding cold water, stop and check by pinching some dough and if it is crumbly, add a tablespoon of water at a time until the dough comes together.
- Pour out onto a floured counter and press together into a disc. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate 30 minutes.
- Remove dough and on a floured surface, roll dough so that it is two inches larger than your standard 10” pie plate. A 9” pie plate can be used however the filling will be right up to the top. Place the dough over the pie plate and gently press in and up and over the edges. With a knife or scissors, cut extra. Pinch the overhanging dough into a high ridge all around and then go back over and a make decorative edge, again, keeping it high. (I use thumb and index finger on one side and the knuckle of my index finger on the opposite side and pressed together to make a scalloped edge) Place the completed pie dough in the freezer for 30 minutes to set up so that the sides don’t collapse while baking.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees and once the pie plate with the dough sits in the freezer for 30 minutes, remove, add parchment and either pie weights or dry beans. (To make the parchment fit, cut parchment into a circle larger than the pie plate and make four slits a few inches long around the edge half way to center so when you place it in the shell, the slits overlap and fit up the sides.) Place in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove pie weights or beans, and with a fork, puncture the bottom in a few places to release steam and place back in the oven without the weights and parchment and bake for 15 more minutes. Cool to room temperature. The shell is now ready to be filled.
- While crust is baking, make the filling by first blooming the gelatin. Place gelatin in the water in a small bowl to dissolve and set aside.
- In a medium sauce pan, mix 1/3 cup of the granulated sugar, flour and salt. Add milk and whisk to combine. Over medium heat, bring to a boil and cook one minute.
- Add gelatin mixture and whisk to combine over medium heat then remove from heat. Whisk in the two extracts then place sauce pan in a bowl with ice to quickly cool.
- Beat the ½ cup of heavy cream and set aside.
- Beat egg whites with cream of tartar and the remaining 1/3 cup of granulated sugar to stiff peaks and set aside.
- Place the filling into the mixer and whip just to make the mixture creamy.
- In a large bowl, place cooled whipped filling and gently fold in whipped cream, beaten egg whites and shredded coconut. With a rubber spatula, scrape mixture evenly into baked and cooked pie shell.
- Whip the two cups of heavy cream to stiff peaks and using a large pastry bag with a large star tip, make a decorative top over the filling and then sprinkle some coconut over the top.
- Dice strawberries and mix in a bowl with the confectioners’ sugar. The strawberries will eventually give up enough liquid to mix with the confectioners’ sugar to create a sauce.
- Cut and serve pieces of the pie with strawberry sauce spooned over the top.
For more info, visit A Family Feast’s website.
8. Funfetti shortbread bites
- 1 cup salted butter (cold and diced into 1 tbsp pieces)
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp almond extract
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (scoop and level flour to measure)
- 2 1/2 tbsp nonpareils sprinkles (any color), then about 1/2 tbsp more for tops if desired
Butter a 13 by 9-inch baking dish and line with 2 sheets of parchment paper (one horizontally and one vertically. I also like to butter between parchment sheets so they stick) leaving a 1-inch over hang on all sides, set aside.
In the bowl of an electric stand mixer cream together butter and sugar until well combined. Mix in almond extract. With mixer set on low speed slowly add in flour and mix until combined (it will take a while and will appear dry and sandy at first but it will start to come together). Mix and fold in sprinkles. Press dough into an even layer in prepared pan (I did it with my hands first then used the bottom of a flat measuring cup to help smooth it out). Chill dough in refrigerator 20 – 30 minutes. Meanwhile preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Lift dough from pan using parchment overhang on all sides. Cut into 1/2-inch squares using a large sharp knife (it works best to just cut long rows). Sprinkle more sprinkles over the top if desired and gently press into dough. Transfer about 1/3 of the cookies to an unbuttered baking sheet (also do not line pan with parchment or silicone liners) and scatter cookies out spacing cookies 1/2-inch apart.
Bake in preheated oven 8 – 12 minutes (keep remaining that aren’t currently baking refrigerated). Repeat process with remaining bites, adding them to a cool baking sheet. Cool completely then transfer to an airtight container and store at room temperature.
For more info, visit Cooking Classy’s website.
9. Honeycomb ice-cream cake with shortbread stars
- 125g Western Star butter, softened
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup icing sugar mixture
- 1 cup plain flour, sifted
- 2 tbsp rice flour, sifted
- 1 1/2 tbsp dutch processed cocoa powder, sifted
- 2 tsp milk
- 4 1/2 litres vanilla ice-cream
- 400g packet chocolate honeycomb pieces, roughly chopped
- 220g bottle chocolate Ice Magic Fresh raspberries, to serve
- Icing sugar mixture, to serve
- Preheat oven to 150 degrees C fan-forced. Grease a 22cm-round (base) springform pan. Line base and side with baking paper, extending paper 2cm above edge of pan.
- Using an electric mixer, beat butter, vanilla and icing sugar together for 5 minutes until light and fluffy. Add plain flour, rice flour, cocoa and milk. Beat on low speed until just combined. Turn onto lightly floured surface. Knead gently until mixture comes together and forms a dough. Wrap 1/2 in plastic wrap. Refrigerate 45 minutes or until firm.
- Meanwhile, roll remaining dough between 2 sheets of baking paper to form a 22cm round. Carefully lift round into prepared pan to cover the base, pressing to flatten and remove any air bubbles. Place pan on a baking tray. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until shortbread is firm to touch. Cool completely in pan.
- Line 2 large baking trays with baking paper. Roll chilled dough between 2 sheets of baking paper until 3mm thick. Using a 5.5cm x 7cm star-shaped cutter, cut shapes from dough, re-rolling and cutting dough scraps (you’ll need 20 stars). Place stars on prepared trays, 1cm apart. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, swapping position of trays halfway through cooking, until firm to touch. Stand on trays 2 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool. Store in an airtight container.
- Place 3 litres of ice-cream in a bowl. Set aside for 10 minutes to soften (ice-cream shouldn’t be melted). Add 3/4 of honeycomb. Fold to combine. Spoon mixture over prepared base in pan. Level with a spatula. Freeze overnight.
- Grease a 20cm x 30cm lamington pan. Line base and sides with baking paper, extending paper 2cm above edges. Place remaining ice-cream in a bowl. Set aside for 10 minutes to soften. Add remaining honeycomb. Fold to combine. Spoon mixture into prepared pan. Level with a spatula. Freeze overnight.
- Remove ice-cream slab from freezer. Stand for 2 minutes. Using star cutter, cut stars from ice-cream (you’ll need 10 stars). Sandwich ice-cream with shortbread stars. Place on a tray and return to freezer.
- Just before serving, remove ice-cream cake from pan. Drizzle with Ice Magic. Top with sandwiches and raspberries. Dust with icing sugar. Serve immediately.
For more info, visit Taste’s website.