Happy Thanksgiving Season! We had our Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday at my daughter’s home in Denver. Her husband was the chef, and guess what! The meal was all vegan. Who’d have guessed it? Gavin made a “from scratch” Vegan Chicken Pot Pie for all of us, and it was delicious.
As I walked in the Denver neighborhood the next day, I spotted a neighbor hanging Christmas icicle lights. “Christmas!” I said. And he answered, “It’s that time.”
Yes, and because it’s that time, I’m sending you a recipe for one of my favorite Christmas cookies. The making of it is as fun as the eating.
(Oh! and don’t forget to click on “Get the book” at the top of the blog to find ways to purchase our cookbook for a Christmas gift.)
Austrian Chocolate Balls
You will need:
2 ounces (2 squares) unsweetened chocolate 1 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter 1 egg plus 1 yoke
1 ½ teaspoon vanilla or almond extract 1 1/3 cup flour
1 oz. unsweetened chocolate 1 cup powdered sugar
1 Tablespoon butter 2-3 Tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon almond or vanilla extract
- Melt together 2 oz. unsweetened chocolate and 1/3 cup butter over low heat. Remove from heat.
- Stir 1 cup sugar, 1 ½ tsp. vanilla or almond extract, 1 egg plus 1 yoke into the chocolate mixture. Blend well.
- Gradually stir in flour until well combined.
- Shape dough into ¾ inch balls. Place on ungreased cookie sheet about 1 inch apart.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 12 minutes until firm to the touch. (Do not overbake.)
- Immediately remove from cookie sheets. Cool.
- For icing:
- Melt 1 oz. chocolate and 1 Tablespoon butter.
- Remove from heat. Add remaining ingredients (under Icing above). Blend well.
- Dip tops of cookies into glaze to cover. Allow to dry completely before storing cookies. Put wax paper between layers.
Food for Thought:
Sometimes I reach for a recipe from my recipe box and encounter a dear friend or relative who is no longer in this world. I made an Ice Cream Dessert for my son last week. The recipe was given to me by a doctor’s wife who was one of the first friends I made after moving to Colorado Springs. She died twenty years ago. But this dessert is still my oldest son’s favorite dessert. This morning I grabbed a handful of recipes and saw that three of them were written by long-gone relatives and a friend who had moved to New York and died an untimely death.
It’s good to remember the way we used to be, the way we laughed and talked about art, enjoyed home-cooked meals together (My husband’s mom made a knock-out Hawaiian Pork) or did Bible Study together and discussed the conundrum of how you can be saved without works.
It is good to thank God for what was. But it is also good to thank God for each of those we love now while we still have them. Last week we received news that a dear friend of ours died in a fiery automobile accident. We had had lunch with Janice and her husband Josh this summer for the first time in years. It was a wonderful time of reconnecting, and rejoicing at what God was doing in their evangelical ministry. She was still sparkly and so alive, and fun! How could she be gone? How?
We never know when someone we love will die. Only God does, and the Word says, “Precious in the eyes of the Lord is the death of his saints.”
He is the one in the end who plans and controls each day of our lives. Kristee, a missionary to South America tells of how unpredictable the rains are in the jungle. Their church meets under a tree, and one day her friend pointed out that in all the Sundays they had met for church under that tree, it had never rained. Amazing provision!
“In your book were all written the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was none of them” (Psalm 139:16b). God plans and controls our lives far more than we realize.
Let us thank Him this Thanksgiving season for the loved ones around us because we never know when their time will come. And let us thank Him for his eternal Presence with us, forever there to comfort and guide.