When all you want is a little something sweet after dinner or with a cup of tea on a chilly afternoon, these bite-sized adult confections are just the ticket. Each variation is loaded with flavor and texture from an ample dose of booze mixed with cookie crumbs and add-ins like dried fruit, chopped nuts, dark chocolate, or coconut. The dried fruit/gingersnap combo amped up with peach schnapps is tastier than any sugar plum. Bourbon and dark chocolate are a traditional pairing for good reason, but the addition of pistachios brings a nice change of pace from the usual pecans and lends a holiday green accent. And in the third version, spiced rum, macadamias, and coconut merge for a treat bursting with island flavor.
One of the great things about these recipes is their versatility. Swap one variety of fruit, nut, or cookie for another you particularly like to create new twists. Although you can make each mix almost entirely in a food processor, prepping each ingredient separately and combining them by hand lets you better control textures. It takes just a few seconds for nuts to become nut butter, cookies to go from fine crumbs to gloppy paste, and dried fruit to gum up a processor’s blades, so use caution. After forming the balls, you can roll them in the usual powdered sugar or cocoa powder, but they will absorb it and may require another roll to coat at serving time to look their best. I prefer a fine cookie crumb or chopped nut coating for staying power (if I coat them at all). Whichever of these diminutive treats you choose, they make a sweet ending to a meal and a tasty holiday gift for friends and family, too. Let the good times roll.