The holidays are upon us! It’s time to put on your fuzzy slippers, decorate, and make some yummy food and drinks to share with your family and friends.
We thought we’d share a few of our favorites with All-ov-u.
Allison Flanigan (Studios Coordinator) claims she is lame. (But we know better.) For her family’s favorite treats, she said, “My girls and I make 3 kinds of cookies: M&M Chocolate Chip, Heath Bar & White Chocolate Chip, and Spritz cookies. Recipes are all from the back of a bag or box … sorry.
However, as far as holiday traditions go, Allison lit up like a Christmas tree.
“For the last 20 years we have gone to Leavenworth every year with our kids for the tree lighting. It has been fun to collect pictures over the years. Some years there are like 20 to 30 of us that go, and some years, just a small group of us go. Nonetheless it is a big tradition in our family, and one I hope to carry on with grandchildren. It is so incredible… like being in a snow globe.”
Nancy Stumvoll (Senior UX Designer) has some words of wisdom when it comes to holiday spirits.
Hot “Ruddered Bum” Mix (See what she did there? Nancy says, “Drink it once and you’ll know why it’s called that.”)
If you’re expecting a big holiday crowd and it’s a chilly night, this holiday drink will take care of one very big crowd! If you’re worried about calories, you can forget about this one.
- 1 quart vanilla ice cream, melted
- 1 lb butter, at room temperature
- 1 lb powdered sugar
- 1 lb dark brown sugar
- 2 tsp nutmeg
- 2 tsp cinnamon
Place ice cream in a large bowl. Set out for several hours until melted. Take butter out of the fridge to get it to room temperature. When the ice cream is completely melted and butter is soft, mix together with a sturdy electric mixer. It helps to warm ingredients slightly in the microwave.
Next add powdered sugar, brown sugar, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Mix ingredients well. Pour into a large plastic container and store in freezer.
To make drinks:
Put 1 ounce of rum and 3 Tbsp of batter into a mug. Fill with boiling water and stir slightly. Bottoms up and enjoy!
Lynn Muranaka (Icon Designer) has some sweet memories from her mom’s holiday baking.
“Aside from my mom’s fruitcake (which actually was really good), she used to make these red (strawberry) and green (lime) cheesecakes, using macadamia nuts for the crust (walnuts do nicely too). To die for!! Here’s a charming pic of the food-stained, typed-with-a-typewriter recipe. The bottle of Avoset mentioned in the recipe, is actually 8 oz of whipping cream.”
For decorations, Lynn also shared an idea for making ornaments from salt dough.
“A friend of mine held an ornament-making party, for which she provided salt dough. We could mold or use cookie cutters to make them, and then we placed them on cookie sheets. We went away, and she took care of the baking. We kept them white, which was nice because the salt crystals glitter in the light.”
She didn’t have that particular recipe, but here’s one she found on Allrecipes.com:
Brian Jensen (Recruiter) has a yummy cookie recipe to share, straight from his Grandmother’s recipe file.
“We just finished baking a massive batch of our family favorite cookies here in the house tonight; Grandma Ruth’s Christmas Crinkle. It’s a family recipe – my Grandma Ruth was a fantastic gal, all around, and she LOVED cooking and baking. The holiday season would find her home overflowing with delicious smells and freshly-baked goodies, and the Christmas Crinkle was always my fave. We actually do bake these every year, and I believe that most of my cousins + siblings do the same… after she passed away, her children and grandchildren all made sure that her recipe cards (with small notes and additions scribbled into the margins from her tweaking the ingredients or directions over the years) were captured and saved for all of us to be able to continue baking her famous treats… both to honor her and have a very tangible and nostalgic tradition that we continue to pass on to our own children. Anyway, these are dead simple, fun to make, a mess to eat, and if you’re into chocolate… dangerous. ;)”
Grandma Ruth’s Christmas Crinkles
- 1/2 cup oil
- 4 squares unsweetened chocolate (approx. 4 oz), melted
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- 2 tsp. vanilla
- 2 cups flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 cup powdered sugar
Mix oil, chocolate and granulated sugar. Blend in 1 egg at a time, adding vanilla. Stir flour, baking powder, and salt into oil mixture. Let chill for several hours or overnight.
Heat oven to 350º and drop by the teaspoonful into powdered sugar. Roll in sugar, shape into balls. Place about 2” apart on greased baking sheet. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes. Enjoy!
Jason Calhoun (VP of Operations) Sugar Cookies are a holiday classic, and Jason’s great aunt had a recipe that will quickly become an Allovus favorite.
Aunt Elmas Sugar Cookies
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup (2 sticks) of butter
- 1 cup powered sugar
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup cooking oil
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1 tbl spoon vanilla
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cream of tarter
- 4 ½ cups flour
Mix all ingredients together and refrigerate several hours or overnight. Roll out on a lightly floured surface and cut with cookie cutters. Bake for 9-11 min at 350 degrees or until edges are a golden brown.
- One 1 lb. box/bag (approx. 3 ¾ cups) powered/confectioners sugar
- ½ cup (1 stick) butter
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 3-4 tbl spoons of milk
Mix first 3 ingredients together and then add the milk little by little ensuring it doesn’t get too runny – you want to mix it into a thick frosting. Split up frosting into small containers and mix in food coloring of your choice. Pipe or spread the frosting onto cooled cookies.
You can make these weeks ahead of time as they “freeze beautifully” – (stolen from Steel Magnolias – LOL)
Happy holidays! If you have a favorite recipe or holiday tradition, share them in the comments!