Village Flavors: Holiday Inspired Pairings

When it comes to celebrating the holidays, good food and spirits are a must. BTV Executive Chef Henry Leachman and Chef Memo Vaca, director of Dining Services, add warmth and cheer to the season with snack and drink recipes so fun and festive, you’ll want to make them again and again!

Holiday Sausage and Cheese Balls paired with Henry’s Homemade Eggnog

Recipes by Henry Leachman

Holiday Sausage and Cheese Balls

Yields 20 Servings

1 Pound Pork Sausage
2 Cups Bisquick®
4 Cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese
3 Tbsp Fresh Chopped Parsley
1 Tbsp Paprika
1/4 Tsp Kosher Salt
1/4 Tsp Black Pepper
Extra Virgin Olive Oil for Brushing

• Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a sheet pan with parchment paper. In a large bowl, mix sausage, Bisquick®, cheese, 2 tbsp of the parsley, salt, pepper and paprika until combined.

• Scoop mixture into tablespoon size balls onto prepared baking sheet.

• Brush tops of balls with olive oil and bake until deep golden brown and no longer pink in the middle, approximately 25 minutes.

• Plate and garnish with chopped parsley.


Henry’s Homemade Eggnog 

Yields 6 to 7 Servings

4 Egg Yolks
1/3 Cup Plus 1 Tablespoon of Sugar
1 Pint of Whole Milk
1 Cup Heavy Cream
3 Ounces Bourbon
1 Teaspoon Nutmeg
4 Egg Whites

Beat egg yolks in a bowl until they lighten in color.  Gradually add 1/3 cup of sugar until completely dissolved. Add milk, cream, bourbon and nutmeg, and stir to combine.

• Beat egg whites in a bowl to form soft peaks. While beating egg whites, add remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks form.

• Whisk egg whites into the egg yolk, milk, and cream mixture. Chill and serve.

I typically use raw eggs for this recipe, but pasteurized eggs may be used to eliminate any risks associated with raw ones. Results will be the same.
–Henry Leachman


Smashed Chocolate Chunk Cookie paired with Christmas Spiced Old Fashioned

Recipes by Memo Vaca

Smashed Chocolate Chunk Cookie

Yields 12+ Servings

8 Oz Unsalted Butter
7 Oz Light Brown Sugar
6 Oz Granulated Sugar
1 Tbsp Kosher Salt
1 Tsp Baking Soda
2 Tsp Vanilla Extract
2 Large Eggs
2 Cups All Purpose Flour
3 Tbsp Corn Starch
1 Cup or 6 Ounces of Semi-Sweet Dark Chocolate Chunks
1 Cup Chopped Walnuts (Optional)
Sea Salt (Optional)

• Sift flour and corn starch together at least twice and set aside.

• In stand mixer bowl with paddle attachment, combine butter, brown sugar, sugar, salt and baking soda. Mix on medium for two minutes.

• Pause to scrape down sides. Increase speed to medium-high to high and mix until pale in color with a fluffy whipped texture, about two minutes.

• Slow mixer to medium speed and slowly add vanilla and eggs.

• Pause to scrape down the sides. Increase mixing speed to high and continue mixing for another minute until eggs are fully incorporated.

• Reduce speed on mixer to low. Add flour, chocolate and walnuts and mix for 1 minute. Increase speed to medium for 30 seconds or until all the flour is incorporated.

• Preheat oven to 350 °F.

• Portion cookie dough into 2.6 oz or approximately 2” balls.

• Place dough ball on greased cookie tray or parchment paper-lined tray. Position dough balls 2.5” inches away from wall and each other.

• Place tray in freezer and chill dough balls for 18 minutes.

• Bake cookies for 12 to 14 minutes at 350 °F.

• The texture will improve as they cool.

• Important – when cookies are done baking, immediately sprinkle a pinch of sea salt on each cookie and GENTLY smash the cookies down with a bowl or glass with a 2” inch flat surface. This will cause the inside center to remain chewy. Let rest at room temperature for 15 minutes.

• Enjoy this crispy-edged, ooey-gooey creation with all the cracks and crinkles you want in a cookie!


Christmas Spiced Old Fashioned

Yields 1 Serving

Old Fashioned Cocktail Ingredients:
1 Strip Fresh Orange Peel
2 Oz Plantation Single Cask Rum
4 Dashes Angostura® Bitters
1 Sugar Cube
1 Tsp Partner Sweet Vermouth
1 Tsp Spiced Simple Syrup
Toschi Amarena Cherry Garnish
Toschi Candied Orange Peel Garnish

Spiced Simple Syrup Ingredients
2 Cups Water
4 Cinnamon Sticks
2 Star Anise Pods
1 Tsp Whole Cloves
6 Cardamom Pods, Crushed
1 Tbsp Crystallized Ginger
1 Tsp Whole Black Peppercorns
1 Cup Turbinado Sugar

Spiced Simple Syrup Directions
• In a small saucepan, bring water to a light boil and add spices. Reduce heat to medium and simmer 15 minutes.

• Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Simmer 5 minutes.

Turn off heat and let rest for 20 minutes at room temperature. Strain through a fine mesh sieve and store in an airtight container in the fridge.

Old Fashioned Cocktail Directions
In a rocks glass, add sugar cube, bitters, simple syrup and sweet vermouth. Muddle until sugar is mostly dissolved. Add Rum (may substitute Rye Whiskey or Bourbon).

Add large ice cube (or several small cubes) and stir 60 seconds to melt the ice slightly.

Reverse-squeeze orange peel into glass to release the oils and aroma onto the drink.

Garnish with cherry and candied orange peel skewer. Cheers!