|"Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it." ~ William Arthur Ward|
Thanksgiving. My favorite holiday, second in line to my birthday. Fall brings on a warm feeling that naturally has you going through a mental checklist of things to be thankful for and dreams of new beginnings for the upcoming year.
This year the holiday started in the early crisp morning to complete a turkey trot. It was my first event of this kind but I hope it becomes another tradition with great friends. Somehow completing a 2 mile walk/jog made me feel better about consuming the large meal to come. Next it was on to food, football and most of all, family! My Mom prepared a great meal of turkey and all the fixings, with a little help from Jamie Oliver. No, the gnarly toothed chef did not make a visit to our family kitchen but he inspired the turkey rub and it turned out fabulous. The best part of the meal for me was seeing the pride on my Dad’s face as we enjoyed corn, green beans, squash and raspberries all from the family garden. The day was topped off with a Green Bay Packers win and more quality family time.
I did partake in some black Friday shopping. Nothing too crazy, my sister and I started shopping at a reasonable time of 9:30am. I managed to get a few Christmas gifts and a little “just because” gift for myself, the 2012 Wilton Yearbook. Think toy catalog for bakers. I will definitely be starting my wish list soon. I ended my shopping day at the least busy store, the grocery store. I picked up a few ingredients to test out a new recipe.
I introduce to you, Tasty Sweet Cupcakes newest flavor, Peppermint Hot Chocolate Cupcakes!
The base is my favorite chocolate cake recipe with a touch of peppermint added. The topping more than doubled the height of the cupcake alone! Who can resist TWO layers of frosting? The first layer is chocolate frosting rolled in crushed candy cane. The top layer is marshmallow frosting with a dusting of hot chocolate powder and homemade peppermint white chocolate swirls and snowflakes. Unintentionally the swirls turned out looking like steam rising from the rich cup of hot chocolate. The only thing left to do was sample. Let me just say, this cupcake is a meal in itself. Not a well rounded meal but a tasty sweet one. This cupcake definitely required a fork. I’m thinking the next batch of these will be made in minis. The family was once again on hand to sample my newest creation and the rest were delivered to friends today. It’s nice to know I always have taste-testers to help me out.
So tonight I’m enjoying a glass of wine and once again going through my mental checklist of all things for which I am thankful. The list is long and that gives me a warm calm feeling. As days, months and years go on, items on my list may change but family, friends and football remain. Oh, and cupcakes too!