I had been hearing about my girlfriend’s holiday cookie party for years. She started hosting them a couple of years after I moved away from Portland to California, so I was never around to attend, nor was I ever invited. Each December I would hear stories about the infamous cookie party from our mutual friends. I’m not one to get bent out of shape about such things, but after a while, I started to wonder why I never made the short list for this party. I mean come on, I’m close with the hostess, I’m into baking and I’ve been known to travel over state lines for events.
I got together with the party hostess as well as two other friends for a getaway weekend this past summer. The subject of the cookie party came up, and of course I asked what it took to get on the invite list. I guess my guilt tactics worked because a couple of months after our girls weekend, I received the invitation I had been waiting for. Finally!
Deciding what to make for the party was simple. My rum balls are boozy and have been in my holiday rotation for years. They’re simple, easy to transport by plane and keep for weeks in the refrigerator. The chocolate and dark rum are decadent and a perfect holiday indulgence.
The cookie party exceeded my expectations, and let me tell you, after years of hype, the expectations were high.
My kitchen notes
Because there is no baking involved, the rum in the balls doesn’t burn off. You may need to check IDs and make sure everyone is 21 before eating!
For the chocolate, I use Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chips.
The rum balls are really tasty when they’re warm and gooey inside. Consider placing the rum balls in the microwave for a few seconds before eating.
This recipe makes about 20-24 balls.
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup sugar, plus 1/2 cup separated
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 cup dark rum
2 1/2 cups finely crushed vanilla wafer cookies
1. In a food processor, add vanilla wafer cookies and process until cookies are finely crushed. Place in a large bowl and set aside.
2. Stir chocolate chips in the top of a bowl placed over a pot of simmering hot water. Stir until melted and remove from heat.
3. To melted chocolate, add 1/2 cup sugar, corn syrup and rum. Whisk until thoroughly incorporated and sugar has dissolved.
4. Add chocolate mixture to bowl with crushed vanilla wafer cookie crumbs and stir to blend.
5. Place remaining 1/2 cup sugar on a plate or in a shallow bowl.
6. Roll dough into small balls, about the size of a ping pong ball, or smaller.
7. Roll each ball into sugar to coat.
8. Place balls in refrigerator for a few hours, or overnight.