Santa Brownie Hats and Santa Strawberries
December 17, 2013
8 days till Christmas!! I can hardly contain my excitement and holiday cheer (hence these adorable little treats…). Feels so great to be home in Austin and to have a couple of weeks to be lazy, catch up on sleep, and most importantly, catch up on my shows. Revenge, Nashville, Real Housewives…I’ve got some work to do, y’all (tough life). Hope my parents don’t get sick of me…they might just be slightly cooler than me. It’s not unusual for me to be in bed at 10 and wake up the next morning to hear stories about my parents’ epic night downtown. Those kids, they keep me young…I did go to a cRaZy holiday party this weekend (I’m not totally lame, okk?!) with some fellow post-graduates from college. It was requested by one of my friends that I bring a paleo holiday treat, so of course I obliged and my creativity wheels starting turning. I decided to make these Santa Brownie Hats and Santa Strawberries (so Pinterest-y of me, I know).
I remembered seeing these precious Santa treat concepts on Pinterest last year and so I figured, why not make them paleo?! I used a brownie recipe from the Against All Grain cookbook and a frosting recipe I found from Real Food RN (it was titled “Best Paleo Frosting Ever” so I looked no further). Both recipes called for palm shortening, a great paleo baking ingredient (butter substitute-palm oil with some of the unsaturated fats removed) that especially keeps cookies chewy and prevents them from flattening, which sometimes happens with coconut oil. The brownies called for unsweetened chocolate which I totally forgot to buy (always have to forget one thing, right?) and so I discovered that 3 tbsp cocoa powder + 1 tbsp coconut oil = 1 tbsp of unsweetened chocolate. Phewf, crisis averted. I also realized that I didn’t have cookie cutters to cut circles out of the brownies…so I used a napkin ring. I’m so resourceful. All about improvising, people. Overall, people really liked the brownies (my taste buds have adapted to love all paleo treats and I think everything is amazing, so I have to gauge how good something actually is by asking non-paleo people)! I creepily watched people’s reactions (gotta make sure they weren’t spitting it into a napkin or anything) that didn’t know they were paleo and I don’t think most even noticed a difference. The frosting was a big hit and had a wonderful vanilla taste. I thought about using coconut whipped cream for both recipes because it’s ridiculously easy and tastes great, but figured it wouldn’t hold as well. This frosting was the perfect consistency.
If you’re looking for fun and easy treats to bring to a holiday party or are just feeling extra festive (no shame), I would definitely recommend these! I know, my Santas look slightly like alien demons…but I didn’t have small enough chocolate chips to get circular eyes
Brownies (From the Against All Grain Cookbook and also posted here)
Frosting (From Real Food RN):
- 1 cup palm shortening (found at Whole Foods)
- 1/2 cup raw honey
- 2 tbsp vanilla
- 4 tbsp arrowroot powder
- 4 tbsp coconut flour
- 4 tbsp coconut oil, melted in microwave
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients except the coconut oil. Blend with a hand mixer until well combined. While mixing on high, slowly drizzle in the coconut oil and mix until whipped together and has a smooth texture. Put into large Ziploc and cut off tip to frost either the brownies or strawberries.
Santa Brownie Hats (10-12 servings between the two recipes):
- Strawberries, washed, leaves cut off (I used one carton, half for the hats and half for the strawberry Santas)
- Paleo frosting (recipe above)
- Brownies (recipe above)
After allowing the brownies to cool, cut out small circles (using cookie cutter or napkin ring :)) and frost the tops (frosting should be in a large Ziploc with tip cut off). Carefully place strawberry on top and add a small dab of frosting to the tip.
Cut strawberry tips off (1/3 of the way down). Frost the bigger portions and add the tips back on. Frost the tips. Add buttons and add eyes (get creative, maybe use chocolate chips or sprinkles!).
ALSO: At the Christmas party I had some hot chocolate with peppermint schnapps (not paleo, sorry bout it) and it was AMAZING. In keeping with this holiday spirit, I just ordered the paleo hot chocolate sampler (classic, Aztec, and mocha) from Eating Evolved (gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, refined sugar-free, and they sweeten with organic maple sugar). Have yet to try them but I’ve heard only great things. I’ll have to report back with a review but let’s be honest, how could it not be good…?