Equinox Punch

I love this drink for the equinox because it is the perfect balance of summer and winter, and it looks so pretty in the glass!

Ingredients:

  •   2 small grapefruits
  •   2 juice oranges
  •   2 tangerines or mineola tangelos
  •   1/2 lime
  •   2 pomegranates

Directions:

Use a citrus press or a juicer to juice the grapefruits, oranges, tangerines, and lime.

 

Juice the pomegranates (2/3 cup juice) into a separate container, and keep everything chilled.

 

When it is time to serve the drinks, fill each glass about ⅔ full with the citrus juice, and then top with the pomegranate.  Due to it's density, the pomegranate will settle to the bottom, and the two juices will stay separated.  Add a shot of silver tequila, and you have a real solstice treat!

Moist Caramel Apple Cake

Really easy and delicious...

Try this wonderful cake recipe straight from the kitchens at Kraft.

 

What You Need:

  • 1 pkg.  (2-layer size) yellow cake mix
  • 1 pkg.   (3.4 oz.) JELL-O Vanilla or French Vanilla Flavor Instant Pudding
  • 1 cup  water
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/3 cup  oil
  • 3 Granny Smith apples (1 lb.), peeled, coarsely chopped
  • 20 KRAFT Caramels
  • 3  Tbsp.  milk

 How To:

HEAT oven to 350ºF.

 

BEAT first 5 ingredients in large bowl with mixer until well blended. Stir in apples. Pour into greased and floured 12-cup fluted tube pan or 10-inch tube pan.

 

BAKE 50 min. to 1 hour or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool cake in pan 15 min. Loosen cake from side of pan; invert onto wire rack. Gently remove pan. Cool cake completely. Transfer to plate.

 

MICROWAVE caramels and milk in microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1-1/2 min. or until caramels are completely melted and sauce is smooth, stirring every 30 sec. Cool 10 min. or until slightly thickened. Drizzle over cake.

 

 

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars

Just as the creatures of the forest are busy now gathering food stores for the coming winter, we can take some time to do the same. Make-your-own energy bars are pretty chic this season, and here is a recipe that is quick, easy and delicious.  (Consider making several batches and freezing them for later!)

Ingredients

  •   1 stick unsalted butter
  •   1 cup brown sugar
  •   2/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  •   1/2 cup maple syrup
  •   2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  •   1/2 cup raisins
  •   1/2 cup coconut flakes
  •   1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  •   3 cups quick oatmeal

 Directions

 . Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

 . Combine butter and brown sugar in large mixing bowl. Microwave about 30 seconds. Stir until consistent.

 . Add peanut butter, maple syrup and vanilla extract. Stir until consistent.

 . Add raisins, coconut flakes, chocolate chips, oatmeal and lastly the egg. Knead until ingredients have an even, cookie dough-like consistency, 2 or 3 minutes.

 . Scrape dough into 9x13 baking dish. Gently press dough, evenly distributing ingredients throughout pan. Bake 30 minutes or until golden brown around edges. The bars are cooked when toothpick comes away cleanly when poked into center of dish. Allow to cool.

 . Run knife along edges of dish and cut bars into sections. Refrigerate. Wrap and pop into zip-close bags for the road.

Makes about 16 bars

 

Cardamom Honey Caramel Pears

Ingredients:

  • enough for 8-10 small/medium apples or pears.
    • Choose apples/pears that are unwaxed as that will help the caramel to adhere.
  • 1 ½ cups heavy cream
  • 1 ½ cups + 1 tablespoon mild honey, such as clover
  • ¾ teaspoon salt, kosher
  • 3 cardamom pods, cracked and seeds ground or ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 cup toasted, roughly ground hazelnuts
  • You will also need a thermometer and popsicle or lollipop sticks .

 

Directions:

Fill your sink or a large bowl with a couple inches of ice water. This will be used to quickly stop the caramel from cooking once it’s reached the desired temperature.

In a large sauce pan (the caramel bubbles up so make sure the pot is much larger than the quantity of the ingredients) heat the cream and salt to a simmer. Once small bubbles appear stir in the honey and ground cardamom. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer. Stir occasionally to avoid scorching on the sides or bottoms of the pan.

Continue to cook until the temperature reaches 255-260*F. If not cooked enough the caramel will be too soft and run off the fruit. If cooked too long the caramel will be difficult to chew.

 

*Tips for Success*

- Boil caramel until it reaches 260*. This will produce a firmer caramel that will better adhere to the apples or pears.

- Use firm pears. If they are too ripe the stick will slide right out.

- Wait to dip the fruit until the caramel is nearly cool. It will be quite thick and sticky but it helps to prevent the caramel from sliding right off.

- Use fruit that is not waxed.

- Chill the fruit before dipping. This sets the caramel immediately. You could also dip then refrigerate.

- Let the excess caramel drip off for at least one minute before dipping into the nuts.

 

 © MoonShine, Inc. Yule, 2017

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