New Year’s Eve is upon us and, much as I wish otherwise, I just don’t have it in me to party like it’s 1999. After a month spent decking the halls; chopping down and putting up a tree; cleaning, cooking and baking; addressing holiday cards; shopping, wrapping and shipping gifts; and general spreading of merriment and goodwill, I am completely and utterly exhausted.
I don’t want to be a killjoy. Really…I love the holidays. But by the end of December, I’m running on fumes, with zero desire to head out into anything resembling a crowd. When New Year’s Eve rolls around, I’m ready to snuggle up at home by the fire, throw on an “Iron Man” movie and call the year a done deal. I know…I’m lame.
Last year, though, I broke tradition. My friends Sharon and Todd lured me out of my hermit’s den with a last-minute invitation to a New Year’s Eve get together at their house. There were six couples and handful of teens and ‘tweens; the adults hung out in the kitchen and living room while the kids stayed happily occupied playing video games in the family room. It was absolutely wonderful—I enjoyed myself so much I forgot all about my prediction that I’d be heading home early. For the first time in years I actually stayed up—and wide awake—to watch the ball drop in Times Square at midnight!
Needless to say, I hope those guys have their party again and that I make the guest list. After a hectic December, that’s exactly the low key, mellow evening I could rally for. And if they don’t host, maybe I will…because it really was a pretty perfect way to wrap up a year.
Whether your New Year’s Eve party is a mellow gathering, a black-tie affair or something in between, these Coconut-Ginger Popcorn Truffles are a special treat that add to the festive feel.
Coconut-Ginger Popcorn Truffles
Yield: 3 dozen truffles
• 5 cups air-popped popcorn
• 2 cups miniature marshmallows
• 1 tablespoon coconut oil or butter
• 3 tablespoons candied ginger, minced
• 1/2 cup shredded coconut
• 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
• 1 teaspoon coconut oil or butter
1. Place popcorn in large bowl.
2. Place marshmallows and coconut oil or butter in medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir until melted; remove from heat.
3. Stir in shredded coconut and candied ginger. Mix well.
4. Spray hands with nonstick cooking spray, then scoop up one tablespoon of popcorn mixture.
5. Roll mixture with hands to form a ball. Place ball on baking sheet lined with parchment paper or foil.
6. Repeat to make 36 balls.
7. Place chocolate in small, microwave safe bowl. Heat in microwave on HIGH for one minute, until melted. If not completely melted, microwave for another 15 seconds and stir again.
8. Stir 1 teaspoon coconut oil into melted chocolate.
9. Place chocolate in zipper-style plastic bag and seal. Snip off a tiny corner of bag.
10. Pipe chocolate on popcorn balls in a decorative pattern.
11. Garnish with extra shredded coconut and extra minced candied ginger if desired.
12. Place truffles in a cool place until chocolate is set.