Welcome To the Land of Sweets

A Menu of Delectable Confections Inspired by George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker

Tickets are on sale now for George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker at OBT.  Grab yours early to get the best seats and beat the holiday rush!

It’s November, which means the season of holiday feasting is upon us with Thanksgiving just a few short weeks away.  To get you in a festive frame of mind, we’ve searched high and low to bring you the best Nutcracker-inspired sweet treats to make your season bright. Click the food photos for links to the recipes!

Share YOUR Recipes and Win an Ultimate Holiday Date Night!

Next week we’ll be posting a batch of recipes submitted by our audience on our blog.  We hope you’ll share your favorite holiday recipes – from sweet treats and cocktails to family feasts or holiday brunch favorites – with us!  To enter the contest, post your favorite family recipe in the comments section below by next Thursday or post it on our Facebook Wall.  Our favorite recipe will win a pair of tickets to Nutcracker or a Holiday Revue plus dinner for two at Morton’s Steakhouse!

Enjoy, and we’ll see you at The Nutcracker!

Sugarplums

No, they’re not just plums dusted in sugar!  Real European-style sugarplums are a hearty, wintry concoction of chopped fruit and nuts.  Recipe courtesy of Saveur Magazine and food blogger Jennifer Yu of Use Real Butter.

Yuka Iino as the Sugarplum Fairy in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker at Oregon Ballet Theatre.

Marzipan

Often relegated to a supporting role as cake decorations, here marzipan comes into its own as a delectable sweet treat that is sublime – nutty, creamy, and sweet – all by itself.  Although chocolate just makes a good thing even better.  Recipe courtesy of the awesome food blog Smitten Kitchen (whose potato latkes we featured in last year’s holiday recipe roundup).  

Candace Bouchard as Marzipan Shepherdess in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker at Oregon Ballet Theatre.

Nut Crackers (gluten free)

(Yes, Nut Crackers.  We couldn’t resist.)  Try these hearty crackers with hummus or your favorite cheese at your holiday cocktail party!  Recipe courtesy of David, Luise and Elsa from the vegetarian food blog Green Kitchen Stories.

Nutcracker and Mouse King in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker at Oregon Ballet Theatre.

Guinness Gingerbread

We think Mother Ginger would definitely approve of this decadent treat from one of our favorite celebrity chefs, Nigella Lawson.  And it only calls for one cup of Guinness, so Mother can reward herself with the leftovers after a long hard day of chasing around all those children.  Recipe courtesy of Food Network.

Mother Ginger in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker at Oregon Ballet Theatre.

Martha Stewart’s Snowcap Cookies

Delicious any time of year, these classic chocolate crinkle cookies are dusted with powder sugar as white as snow.  Delicious!  Recipe courtesy of Holiday Goddess Martha Stewart herself. 

  Julia Rowe as a Snowflake in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker at Oregon Ballet Theatre.

Spiced Hot Chocolate

A little bit Spanish and a little bit Arabian, this beverage is spicy, soothing and sweet – the perfect holiday drink.  If you want a little kick, toss in a dried chili pod while it’s steeping.  For a more adult version, finish with Tia Maria, Kahlua or spiced dark rum to drive the winter blues away. Recipe courtesy of chef Daisy Martinez and food blogger Eliana of A Chica Bakes

Candy Cane Martini

The candy cane – perhaps the most iconic of holiday treats – gets a grownups-only makeover for an after-dinner treat as zippy and enjoyable as Balanchine’s hoop-jumping Candy Cane variation.  Both are guaranteed to put a smile on your face.  Recipe courtesy of food blog Once a Chef, Always a Chef.


The Candy Cane variation in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker at Oregon Ballet Theatre.

0 thoughts on “Welcome To the Land of Sweets

  1. I’m submitting my sweet and savory pumpkin scone recipe. The holidays are a time for family to get together and remind each other what is important in life. This recipe encompasses the holidays, seasonal ingredients and comfort food.

    Sweet and Savory Pumpkin Scones with Cinnamon Butter

    Ingredients:

    1 tablespoon butter
    1/2 cup sugar
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
    ½ teaspoon coarsely chopped mixed herbs (fresh are best): sage, tarragon, thyme
    1 egg
    1 cup cold mashed pumpkin (fresh pumpkin is best, but can use canned as well)
    2 cups self raising flour

    To glaze:
    1 tbsp milk
    1 egg yolk

    Cinnamon Butter:
    1 stick butter
    2 tsp honey
    1 cinnamon stick
    ¼ teaspoon nutmeg

    Method:

    1. Cream the butter, sugar and salt.
    2. Add egg, then pumpkin and sift in flour lightly until dough comes together.
    3. Place dough on floured surface and pat or roll to about ½ inch thickness
    4. Use holiday themed cutouts (pumpkins, trees, wreath, etc.) or regular round biscuit cutters and put on a tray.
    5. Brush scones with glaze of milk and egg yolk. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.

    For Cinnamon Butter, combine all ingredients in small saucepan over low heat. Stir regularly and simmer on low heat for 20 minutes while scones are baking. Remove cinnamon stick and allow butter to cool/harden.

    Serve scones warm or cold with cinnamon butter.

  2. Here’s one for the grown-ups! Heavily-spiked fruit-bread pudding, a cross between fruit cake and bread pudding.

    7 eggs
    3/4c sugar

    Beat together really well.

    Add in 2 1/2 cup milk
    1tb cinnamon
    1tsp nutmeg
    1/2 tsp ginger
    1/2 tsp ground cloves
    1/2 cup spiced rum (I use Captain Morgan’s or Kraken)

    In an oven-safe pot, tear up a loaf of bread. I don’t bother with the regular stuff for this (we’re lovers of Dave’s Killer Bread and only use that, except for this pudding), just a cheapie loaf of white or “wheat” bread. You don’t need to be precise. Add in a cup of candied fruits. If it’s the full pieces, chop it up.

    Pour the egg mixture over the bread and fruits and let it soak in. Mix it up good. It’s okay if the bread breaks up.

    Place in the oven at 350 for 45 minutes or until set. I don’t bother preheating the oven for this.

    In a sauce pot on the stove, simmer together:
    1 cup sugar
    1 cup of butter or margarine
    1 – 1 1/2 cup of rum

    Simmer so you don’t burn away the alcohol. Simmer until the sugar’s melted and the sauce has thickened. Try not to slurp all the sauce before the pudding is finished. It’s hard. Believe me. 🙂

    Cover the sauce until the pudding is done. It’ll cool a bit, and that’s okay. The heat of the pudding will warm it back up.

    You know what to do from there. 🙂

  3. My grandma used to make these sweet treats and they are still my favorite treat today:

    Chocolate Corn Flake Clusters Recipe

    Ingredients
    1 tablespoon Unsalted Butter
    1 Bag Chocolate Chips
    2 cubes Baker’s Chocolate
    ½ box Corn Flakes

    Directions
    In a saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon butter and add the bag of chocolate chips along with the baker’s chocolate.
    Add Corn Flakes and mix together until all the Corn Flakes are coated.
    Line a baking tray with wax paper or use cupcake cups and scoop a heaping dinner-sized tablespoon full to make one cluster. Repeat scooping until mixture is finished.
    Refrigerate for an hour, at least, before serving.

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