...based on my in-law family's passed down recipe, including cocoa and bourbon...
and then some more bourbon.
These bourbon balls are very simple and sooooooooo good. I don't usually type multiple letters in a row to emphasize a word, but that's how good these are.
I remember growing up, my church and whole neighborhood (potato/potahto, hello small towns!) would have an annual Christmas party. Many many treats. Hot spiced wine. Cider. Two beautiful Christmas trees. Lots of laughter and plenty of singing, because it was hosted by our church's beloved music director, and because hello—Christmas music is the bomb. (Are we still saying the bomb these days?)
Inevitably, there were always bourbon balls at this party.
Also inevitably, there was a toddler in the pastor's family.
I distinctly remember the intense combination of horror and thinly veiled amusement in this jolly bunch of Baptists when they realized the pastor's toddler had consumed four bourbon balls. It's hard to tell if his giggles were bourbon-induced or just from seeing a Christmas party from the eyes of a toddler, which has got to be one of the happiest times in any person's life, ever. (<-- a totally objective statement.)
Probably the latter. But that's probably because they didn't have these bourbon balls. They are strong, y'all. And they're not even baked, so the the-alcohol-gets-cooked-out excuse isn't even an option here. But as long as you're not a 2-year-old, you're golden!
There's a chance we always add a little extra bourbon to them when we make them, too, but I'll never ever tell...
...based on a flourless recipe that combines pumpkin and TWO kinds of chocolate.
Did I have you at "two kinds of chocolate"?
Or "flourless"? (No white flour, that is.) Did I also mention there's no oil or butter in the recipe? And it doesn't call for an excessive amount of sugar, either. These are all winning points in my book!
As far as sweet treats go, I'd say these fall on the healthier end of the spectrum.
And they taste amazing. They have a warm, comforting spiced pumpkin flavor, and the chocolate makes them feel decadent. They're at a nice crossroads of chewy and cakey—altogether, so delicious that I'm pretty sure the husband and I both had one or two before I finished taking photos of them.
...based on the time I bought dried cranberries that smelled soooo good and I had to add them to the applesauce I'd already planned on making.
Applesauce is so simple to make. And I love that it's a sweet, sweet treat you can make without adding any extra sugar...because if you haven't read the memo—apples have a lot of sugar in them.
An average gala apple has 16 grams of sugar, in fact! So no need to add any extra sweetener, y'all!
Apples. Cranberries. Cinnamon.
That. Is. All.
(OK, plus a tiny bit of lemon juice.)