A Cup of Christmas Cheer

A Cup of Christmas Cheer

Kritika Gupta

A die-hard Shah Rukh Khan fan, Kritika suffers from reading addiction. A book in hand and a mind full of swoony, dreamy, romantic and mostly good intentions is what describes her perfectly.
December 17, 2015

December is my favourite time of the year and Christmas, my favourite holiday. I remember as a child, waking up to the smell of cinnamon wafting through our home and the cold nights my mom tucked me in bed with a cup of heartwarming hot chocolate. That's what I feel my Christmas holiday is about – good food, family and fun.

Ours has always been a home big on baking, so come December, my grandma would start making big batches of yummy cookies. These would range from vanilla shortbread, chocolate chip to crinkle sugar cookies. Just thinking about it makes me smile! I attribute my weight gain during this time of the year to my grandma's delicious pumpkin cake, which I could eat straight off the baking tray! I've burnt my tongue on more than one occasion because of this (bad?) habit.

Christmas... The child inside me is squealing just thinking about it! Since this is one of my most cherished part of the year, I'd like to share a bit of Christmas cheer with everyone. My most favourite thing about this season was being able to have delicious hot chocolate, yummy cakes and melt-in-mouth cookies. And that's what I'm going give you! Recipes of some of my most favourite Christmas sweets.

Choco mug cake
Choco Mug Cake (Photo credit: William Reavell © Dorling Kindersley)

 

Choco Mug Cake

What you need:

  • 3 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoon powdered sugar
  • A pinch of baking soda
  • 2 tablespoon warm milk
  • 2 tablespoon vegetable oil

How to prepare:

  • In a bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients.
  • Add milk and vegetable oil, and mix until all ingredients are combined properly.
  • Pour the batter into a microwave-safe mug and bake it for 1–2 minutes on high heat till the cake rises.
  • Take out the mug and serve as you like.
  • If you like the combination of chocolate and nuts, for a more nutty chocolate cake, add in some crushed almonds or walnuts!

 

Vanilla Shortbread Cookies
Vanilla Shortbread Cookies (Photo credit: author)

 

Vanilla Shortbread Cookies

Shortbreads are the easiest and certainly one of my favourite cookies. Scottish in origin, these are essentially made with just four ingredients: butter, sugar, vanilla extract and flour.

What you need:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
    1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

How to prepare:

  • Beat the butter, sugar, salt and vanilla extract together. After the sugar gets completely incorporated in the mixture, start adding in flour and fold it in. Once all the ingredients have been folded together, you will have a dough-like batter. Flatten this dough, wrap in plastic wrap and chill it in the refrigerator for at least an hour.
  • After an hour, roll out the dough into a 1/4 inch-thick circle on a lightly floured surface. Cut into rounds or any other shapes using cookie cutters.
  • Preheat the oven at 177°C. Line your baking tray with parchment or butter paper.
  • Bake for 8–10 minutes or until the cookies are lightly browned. Take them out of the oven and cool on a wire rack. Ta-da! Your yummy cookies are ready.

 

Hot Chocolate
Hot Chocolate (Photo credit: Tina Rupp © Dorling Kindersley)

 

Gooey Hot Chocolate – the fairest of them all (in taste at least!)

For the Hot Chocolate powder:

  • 3 tablespoons chocolate powder
  • 1 tablespoon milk powder
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla custard powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • 1 tablespoon grated chocolate of your choice

For the drink:

  • 3/4 cup milk (per serving)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar (or to taste)

How to prepare:

  • This recipe makes about five big mugs of Hot Chocolate or eight small cups. All you'll need to do is add 1 and a half tablespoon of the hot chocolate powder to 3/4 cup of milk along with sugar to taste.
  • Heat it in a microwave for 2 minutes or just boil it in a pan till the milk thickens.
  • You can store this mixture in an airtight container and enjoy it for the rest of the week! Or, you could make a big batch for your family and friends.


Enjoy these recipes and have a merry Christmas!

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