treat

recipe: spiked hot cocoa with candy cane vodka [holiday cocktail]

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welcome to day 10 of #12daysofblogging! if you’re just joining us, you can find out more about the christmas linkup here. today’s prompt is “holiday cocktail”. get inspired and spread the christmas spirit! share your link below!

recipe: candy cane infused vodka - hooleywithaz.com

today we’re sharing the christmas spirits! get it? see what i did there? spirits, like alcohol? but then it’s like a play on the phrase christmas spirit? you get it.

there are so many festive cocktails around this time of year. pomegranate martinis, bailey’s in everything, and cider cocktails abound (check out chelsea’s amazing creations to see what i’m talking about!). but this recipe is one of my favorites. it’s so festive and so easy, but people will be completely impressed that you infused your own vodka with candy canes! it’s so martha stewart of you!

recipe: candy cane infused vodka - hooleywithaz.com

recipe: candy cane infused vodka - hooleywithaz.comnow you can enjoy some spiked hot cocoa in front of a fire, while watching your favorite christmas movie, or maybe even in a travel mug while you’re outside in the cold…the sky’s the limit.

spiked hot cocoa with candy cane vodka

  • candy canes
  • vodka
  • hot cocoa mix
  • mason jar

break up 1-2 candy canes into a mason jar (depending on the size of the jar you’re using, you can adjust amounts). pour vodka over the candy canes, enough to fill the mason jar. let the candy canes dissolve into the vodka. the smaller your candy cane pieces, the faster they will dissolve. the vodka will turn a pretty pink color. once the candy canes are all dissolved, make your hot cocoa, leaving room in the mug for a shot of candy cane vodka. protip #1: i recommend using a large mug for a whole shot of vodka, a small mug can be pretty strong! protip #2: enjoy with a christmas cookie. protip #3: this makes a really good gift. mix up individual mason jars, tie a ribbon and an extra candy cane around the top, and give with some nice hot cocoa and/or a mug!

recipe: candy cane infused vodka - hooleywithaz.com

let me know if you make any this weekend, i hear it’s going to be cold out there!

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a gluten-free birthday.

are you guys ready for yet another family birthday post? i know you’re up for it. yesterday marked the end of hooley family birthday season, while zauner family birthday season starts later this summer. woo! and if you’re keeping count, you’ll know that yesterday belonged to my brother patrick (but we call him patyick).

patyick

 

patyick

my baby brother turned twenty-five yesterday. you’ll notice i didn’t say little brother, because he has literally never been smaller than me. we are only thirteen or so months apart, and when he came home from the hospital, he was taller than me and weighed almost as much. even with that, i still thought he was my own personal babydoll. i was a one-year-old who thought she was going to take care of a giant infant herself. i called him “my baby” for a very long time, and would always ask if i could “hold my baby?” or “feed my baby?”, which i’m sure my mom and dad thought was hilarious.

i have a history of being extremely bossy towards patyick. like, THE bossiest. i think it stems from thinking i was his mother? that’s a theme i hope to dig into in therapy one day. i forced him into musical performances with me on the daily, and was a total micro-manager when it came to performance direction.

“no, you don’t come out yet!” “no, stop dancing like that, stand still and sing!” “no, keep that tutu on we are doing a ballet!”

i also really liked to play house with him, but my version of house was me being the mom, patyick being the dad, and since my dad went to work everyday, i would make patyick a plastic breakfast, then send him off to work in the closet. and only i knew when the workday was done. i think i once made him stay in there so long that he fell asleep on the vacuum. THE BOSSIEST!

pat and the girls

that all ended when he realized he was bigger and stronger than me, although he never got me back for all the grief i put him through. which is why he is such a great brother. he just rolls with the punches and asks for another jellybean if things don’t go his way, like when he got four sisters instead of that brother he asked for. i love my brother a lot, he’s such a good man, and gets better and better every year. someday he will live in saint paul near us, and then life will get really fun! i hope twenty-five is the best birthday yet patyick, thanks for being my life-size babydoll for the last quarter century!

me and patyick

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my brother recently found out he has a lot of food sensitivities. for the next year or so, he has to be on a gluten-free, potato-free, dairy-free, egg-free diet. yikes, right? don’t fret too much, he should be able to add back in dairy and eggs after a year if all goes well. but for the time-being, he is pretty limited to fruits, veggies, rice and proteins, which can get pretty boring. so i thought for his birthday i would make him some cupcakes that he could actually eat.

cupcake ingredients

this was my first foray into gluten-free baking, and these actually turned out WAY better than i thought they would. they are a little sticky (because of the rice flour, i think the sorghum flour would have a different effect), but taste delicious! and come on, these are for sure the healthiest cupcakes you’ve ever heard of, right? i KNOW!

cupcakes

cupcakes 2

cupcakes 3

cupcakes 4

gluten/egg/dairy-free vanilla cupcakes with mocha frosting (slightly modified from this recipe on gluten free goddess)

for the cupcakes:

  • 1 C. white rice flour (the original recipe called for sorghum or brown rice flour)
  • 1 C. tapioca starch
  • 1 C. organic cane sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. gluten-free cornstarch (the original recipe called for xanthan gum) (what?)
  • 1 C. vanilla coconut milk
  • 1/2 mashed banana + 1/4 tsp. baking powder (to replace 1/4 C. or 1 egg)
  • 3 Tbsp. coconut oil, melted
  • 1 Tbsp. bourbon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. lemon juice

preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. whisk flour, starch, and dry ingredients together. add in non-dairy milk, banana mixture, coconut oil, vanilla, lemon juice. beat until smooth, but don’t overbeat. use an ice cream spoon to spoon into cupcake tins. smooth tops with a wet finger. bake until firm and dome-shaped, which in my crappy oven took about 23 minutes, but could be anywhere between 18-25. let cool for about a minute, then transfer to a cooling rack so the cupcakes don’t steam on the bottom.

frosted cupcakes

for the frosting:

  • 2 C. powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. cocoa powder
  • 2-3 Tbsp shortening (the original recipe called for vegan butter, but you could use regular butter too if you don’t need dairy-free)
  • 2 oz. cold coffee
  • 1 tsp. bourbon vanilla

starting with a small amount of coffee, beat in the sugar, cocoa, shortening, and vanilla. add more liquid if needed. beat for about two minutes, until smooth. add more sugar if you need to stiffen it. chill the frosting for about an hour before use.

don’t frost until you are ready to serve. if you need to frost a bit beforehand, pop the frosted cupcakes in the freezer for a while before taking them out and allowing them to warm up for about ten minutes.

frosted cupcakes

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MAKE SURE TO CLICK THAT FOLLOW BUTTON TO YOUR RIGHT OR ADD ME TO YOUR READER IF YOU WANT TO TREAT YOURSELF TO ALL MY BRILLIANT LIFE MUSINGS. I TEND TO KEEP THINGS FUN AROUND HERE. PLUS, YOU KNOW YOU LOVE MY CRAZY BAKING EXPERIMENTS.