inRegister staffers share their favorite sweet holiday treats

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The sweetest time of year has arrived, along with the memories and pastimes that make it so. Whether it’s chestnuts roasting on an open fire or hot chocolate simmering on a simple stove, there’s bound to be one treat or another that rises to the top of your list. To dive deeper into the holiday spirit, we’ve asked the inRegister staff for some of their favorite holiday treats—may they inspire our tastebuds and our new traditions.


“My grandmother’s sister, Aunt Grace, passed away a year ago this week at the age of 102. She was a huge LSU Tigers fan and never missed a game on TV, but she was also well known for her cooking and baking. Her praline recipe was a family favorite, and ever since I was young, these sweet treats were a holiday staple in our house. She always used Bergeron’s pecans, which are shelled and bagged in my hometown of New Roads. My mom still makes Aunt Grace’s pralines every year, and it’s an essential item on my own holiday baking menu and the perfect taste of home. The recipe is simple, but getting a good result is all about timing.”

Aunt Grace’s Pralines

2 cups sugar
2/3 cup evaporated milk
2 cups chopped pecans
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. butter
Mix sugar and evaporated milk; cook until mixture reaches soft ball stage (235 on a candy thermometer). Remove; add pecans, vanilla and butter. Do not stir. Cool for 10 minutes. Beat, then spoon into a greased dish or drop by spoonfuls onto waxed paper. Cool until set.

– Kelli Bozeman, editor


“Peppermint bark from Williams Sonoma used to be my obsession. I would get multiple boxes so I could have it for months. However, now that our store is closed, I’m trying my hand at homemade peppermint bark. It’s shockingly easy and very delicious!” – Riley Bienvenu Bourgeois, assistant editor


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“Every Christmas, we bring out our special iron for pressing latticed snowflake patterns into homemade pizzelle, simple Italian cookies that pair perfectly with my mom’s peppermint-sprinkled white hot chocolate. Just watch out for the puffs of powdered sugar that will inevitably find their way onto your clothes.” – Christina Leo, community editor


“A new tradition (oxymoron? maybe) my family and I have adopted over the past couple of years is Mexican night on Christmas Eve. I don’t know where this all started, but I can’t complain. With a little margarita (or two) to usher in the holidays, this is truly a tradition I look forward to every year.” – Jordan Frederick, editorial intern


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“My favorite holiday treat is my grandma’s pumpkin bread! It’s the ideal amount of spice and pairs well with everything. It’s the perfect pick-me-up when I’m feeling down or stressed.” – Caroline Ramagos, editorial intern

 


“I was obsessed with Brach’s Peppermint Christmas Nougats when I was a child. They taste like minty Christmas taffy. I always got excited when I saw that my mom finally filled the crystal candy dish with these tasty seasonal treats.” – Brittany Nieto, advertising coordinator


“Milk punch! I have so many memories of making them virgin when we were kids—blended with a sprinkle of nutmeg on top, and we felt so cool. Now, we can drink the real thing with a splash of bourbon and on the rocks—super nostalgic! If you are running late to family Christmas, just put a ‘milk punch request’ into the family chat and it will be ready upon your arrival.” – Sadie Fury, account executive


“Betty Crocker Gingerbread cookies! I wipe the shelves clean at Target as soon as they get the shipment, so it’s raining (gingerbread)men all holiday season long!” – Kynley Lemoine, account executive


“Mine would be the white trash mix (usually a white-chocolate-bound mix of Cheerios, Chex, M&Ms, salted mixed nuts and pretzels). Or candied Cane River pecans.” – Elizabeth McCollister, chief marketing officer