All of my Christmas shopping has been done and I just finished my last holiday sweet this evening. Phew! I love giving away pretty containers filled with homemade treats during the holidays and this year’s bounty is pretty impressive. I’ve made a batch of pretty iced Ginger Gems, some white chocolate candy cane bark, plenty of dark chocolate salted mixed nut bark, Orangette’s building blocks (with salted mixed nuts, raisins, candied ginger & dried cranberries) and my yummy fleur de sel caramels. But I felt something was missing so I dug into my bag of tricks and came up with rum balls!
I’m totally new to the world of rum balls…a recent convert so to speak. One afternoon during a long walk on Commercial Drive (a street known for it’s hippies, Italian community and local food spots), Cornelius put me up to a rum ball challenge. We stopped off at 3 different bakeries and tried rum balls at all 3 just so that we could figure out which bakery made the best one. So you better trust that even though I’m new to the rum ball existance, I’m certainly no slacker when it comes to determining what makes a great rum ball. And these, my friends, are great rum balls! A great holiday cookie indeed. Since these are no-bake cookies, the rum flavour doesn’t burn off and they’ve got enough of a kick to keep a smile on your face during whatever holiday stress you encounter.
I don’t have a food processor, so I chopped all the pecans by hand. This works really well for this recipe because a nice nutty texture is best here and you don’t want to end up with a messy paste of finely ground nuts. If you don’t have chocolate cookies, give gingersnaps or vanilla cookies a try!
1 1/2 c pecans
1 1/4 c chocolate wafer cookies (or gingersnaps or vanilla cookies)
1/2 c powdered sugar
1/4 t cinnamon
2 T cocoa powder
2 T corn syrup
1/4 c amber rum
+ powdered sugar, grated coconut and sweetened cocoa powder
1. Toast the pecans in a 350 degree oven until fragrant (about 10 minutes). Let cool and then chop finely. While pecans are toasting, crush the cookies until fine.
2. In a large bowl, combine crushed pecans, crushed cookies, powdered sugar, cinnamon, and cocoa and stir until well mixed. Add in the rum and corn syrup and mix well. Chill for at least 1 hour.
3. Roll 1 teaspoon of the mixture into balls and roll in your choice of powdered sugar, grated coconut or cocoa powder.
Makes 28 balls…so go ahead and double the recipe!