Spice up your holidays

By Sonal Singh, Staff Writer

As the holiday season approaches, among the many things I’m looking forward to, festive food is definitely at the top of my list. I can just imagine waking up on Christmas morning and catching a whiff of the delicious, decorated cookies coming from the kitchen. I look forward to seeing trays upon trays full of cookies and peppermint bark surrounded by mugs of hot chocolate each holiday season.

Here are a couple simple holiday recipes I highly recommend trying, which I love making with my friends and family.

Spicy Hot Chocolate

This recipe was adapted from allrecipes.com.

This spiced version of classic hot chocolate adds a nice twist to this rather simple drink. This could be a little too rich for some people, but you could always adjust the spices to suit your tastes!

6 cups skim milk

3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

3 tablespoons white sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon chili powder

¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

¼ teaspoon ground cloves

Place a saucepan over medium-low heat, and warm the milk before mixing in the cocoa powder and sugar. Ensure it is completely dissolved before adding vanilla, cinnamon, chili powder, nutmeg and cloves. After that, continue to heat it until everything is mixed in properly.

Pour it into glasses, and serve it just as it is — or you could always add some whipped cream to top it all off.

Peppermint Bark

One of the most closely associated flavors with Christmas is peppermint, and what better way to enjoy it than through the very easy to make peppermint bark!

This recipe was adapted from asweetpeachef.com.

12 ounces of dark chocolate (chopped)

12 ounces of white chocolate (chopped)

1 ½ cups crushed peppermint candies (around 15 individual candies)

½ teaspoon mint or peppermint extract

Start by laying a sheet of parchment paper on a baking sheet. Proceed to melt the dark chocolate and white chocolate in the microwave separately. After the dark chocolate is melted, spread it evenly all over the parchment paper and freeze it while you melt the white chocolate.

While melting the white chocolate, add the peppermint extract. Once it is completely melted, proceed to add half of the crushed peppermint into the white chocolate, and mix them until it is combined well.

After that, pour it over the now-set dark chocolate, and spread it as evenly as possible. Then sprinkle the remaining peppermint over the white chocolate, and place the entire thing in the freezer to harden thoroughly.

Once it is set, you should be able to break it into pieces with your hands. Enjoy!


This recipe was adapted from foodnetwork.com.

4 egg yolks

1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar

2 cups whole milk

1 cup heavy cream

3 ounces of bourbon (optional)

1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

4 egg whites

First beat the egg yolks in a standard mixer until they lighten in color. Then slowly add in the sugar and beat until it is completely dissolved. Following that, add the milk, cream, bourbon (if you want to) and nutmeg, and continue to stir it until everything is combined.

Next beat the egg whites until they reach soft peaks. While the mixer is still running, slowly add the 1 tablespoon of sugar, and beat it until stiff peaks form.

Gently whisk the egg whites into the mixture and serve it cold.

Sonal is a freshman in Engineering.

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