Thursday, March 23, 2006

Pastry Pirate's Booty

Michael never fails to amaze me. Today he walked in the room holding the dough hook to my KA mixer and declared, "You might want to think about going as the Pastry Pirate this Halloween." What a guy, already thinking of my costume! I actually did dress up as a pirate, once for a party and another time at a Jimmy Buffet concert. "Pastry Pirate Looks at 40", again and again. Yes, I still have the pictures! So in honor of this brilliant and creative use of kitchen attachments, we offer Rum Balls. These are another good companion to a cup of hot tea or cocoa, or even a hot buttered rum, while we wait for spring to warm us up. They are super easy to make, but keep these balls way from underage folks, and always use a designated captain, we are talking real rum here, matey. The Pastry Pirate says yo, ho, ho, and balls of rum! Arrgghh!!

RUM BALLS - adapted from FoodTV
Makes about 36 one-inch balls
2 cups finely ground vanilla wafer cookies or Marias
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup very finely chopped pecans
1/3 cup dark rum, we like Meyers
1/4 cup dark corn syrup
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
additional powdered sugar for coating

In the food processor grind vanilla wafers, pulse lightly. In a large bowl mix the vanilla wafer crumbs, 1 cup powdered sugar, pecans, dark rum, dark corn syrup, and butter. Knead mixture together, wear gloves if you must. If the mixture is too dry or if the humidity in your area is low, add a tablespoon more of the rum. Couldn't hurt. With a melon baller or sturdy teaspoon scoop out mixture and shape into one-inch balls. On a pie pan sprinkle about 1/4 cup or so of additional powdered sugar and roll the balls, coating each with the sugar. Set the rum balls on a parchment lined baking sheet. Cover rum balls with plastic wrap completely sealing the baking sheet. Let the rum balls sit at room temperature for 48 hours to develop the flavor. You will be tempted to unwrap the plastic and sneak a ball or two for yourself, but wait and your patience will be rewarded with this Pastry Pirate treasure.

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