Christmas Champagne Camembert Bisque

christmas-champagne-camembert-bisque

Shortly after my husband and I planted roots in Missouri, I started a Christmas dinner tradition of serving champagne camembert bisque as the first course. The silky richness of the cream and melted camembert cheese has such an incredible lusciousness; it takes a concerted effort not to have a second bowl and forget about the rest of the meal.

While taking the picture for this post, I realized it’s extremely challenging to get a good picture of a cream based soup.  It could have also been the two glasses of champagne I sipped while making the bisque. (wink) So for this recipe, taste wins out over the visual, but I guarantee you’ll love it. Pair the bisque with some fresh baked bread, and you have the beginnings of a delicious holiday meal.
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The Bloody Inferno

The Bloody Inferno

I’ve never understood the name for the cocktail called a ‘Bloody Mary.’ Some say its origin is about a spirit conjured to reveal the future by calling her name in a mirror three times, others say it’s about the legend of Mary Tudor who had hundreds of Protestants murdered in the name of Catholicism. There’s even a story about the drink first being called a ‘Red Snapper’ before it was changed to what we call it today. Regardless, it’s one of my favorite cocktails.

When it comes to the flavor of a traditional Bloody Mary, however, any true foodie would agree that vodka and tomato juice tend to be pretty flavorless ingredients, so they need a big flavor boost to make them tasty. What’s my favorite version? I add an elevated zing using my favorite trio of charred veggies, spicy peppers, and habanero-infused vodka.

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Homemade Coffee Liqueur

Homemade Coffee Liqueur.

The holiday season is almost here, which means it’s time to start thinking about ways of showing your family and friends how much they mean to you. And what better way to do that than by giving them something you’ve made yourself?

Here’s a very simple recipe for making homemade coffee liqueur.  It’s the perfect gift for the folks on your nice list who would enjoy adding it to their coffee, pouring it over their ice cream, or just slowly sipping it in front of a crackling fire.

Make this now, and it will ready in time for Christmas!

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Blackberry Basil Tea

Blackberry Basil Tea

Ice water is the perfect thirst quencher on a hot summer day, but there are times when I have a taste for something that has a little more flavor, like a tall, refreshing glass of iced tea.

Since the basil plant in my herb garden has been growing faster than I can use it this year, I decided to take advantage of my surplus and play around with a few ingredients.  So instead of brewing the traditional tea flavors of lemon and sugar, I tried this sweet and savory version steeped in organic black tea leaves, muddled blackberries and fresh basil leaves.  As it turned out, the flavors paired beautifully together and the deep rich color was so inviting, before I knew it, it was gone!

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