Happy New Year! Clean out pantries by throwing a party!

So today is the first day of the new year. I would like to say something poignant and meaningful, but instead I’m starting the New Year sitting on my couch with Rosie snuggled up beside me waiting for my husband to wake up. Then I will do a Starbucks run and make some eggs.

Last night, we  rang in the new year with some wonderful friends up at my neighbor’s house. My contribution was a bottle of Citron Absolute, Bean Dip, Brandy balls and Peanut-butter blossoms. Almost everything–except for the liquor–came from my pantry.

The brandy balls were my own creation after my neighbor needed just a 1/2 cup of brandy for caramel sauce. The liquor store was out of small airline bottles so we ended up with the next smallest bottle (approximately 2 cups.) We were talking about other things, I could do to help use up some of the brandy.

And I remembered in my Betty Crocker’s Christmas Cookbook, there is a recipe for Bourbon balls that even says you can substitute brandy for the bourbon. Well, I didn’t have any of the other things Betty Crocker asked for, so I substituted the whole recipe using the Betty Crocker ratios with marvelous results.

Note: because they are not cooked, they do have a strong boozy flavor and no alcohol is burned off. Definitely not for kids!

Here we go,

3 cups of cookie/candy crumbs. I used leftover gingerbread cookies that were going stale, leftover pie crust baked and dusted with cinnamon, some sugar cookies, other odds and ends of chocolate, crumbled in my blender on the “shred speed.”

(Now the BC Bourbon ball recipe calls for cocoa, but I didn’t bother with that since I added some chocolate flavored things when I was creating my crumbs.)

Added 2 cups of powdered sugar

1/2 cup of walnuts also finely ground in my blender

Then stirred in

1/2 cup of brandy

1/2 cup of something sticky. (B C’s  says light corn syrup, I didn’t have any in the house and since the idea is to use up stuff I had, I used honey.)

Mix well. You will end up with a sticky mixture.

Dust hands with powdered sugar and roll mixture into one inch balls. (For any new candy makers: the dusting of your hand in powdered sugar helps the ball form to itself and not to your hands. Same concept as dusting a rolling-pin with flour)

Roll balls in a mix of white sugar and cinnamon

Cover and put them in the fridge for at least over night. The longer they sit the better the flavors meld.

My husband who is not a fan of hard alcohol was also not a fan of the candy, but the other seven people who tried them last night all loved them and two people asked for the recipe which is why I am posting it this morning.

Now on to my New Year’s resolution of world domination!!! Opps, did I say that last part aloud?

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