Dark Chocolate & Peppermint OREO Cookie Balls

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Oreo Cookie Balls | Fork Knife SwoonDark Chocolate Peppermint Oreo Cookie Balls | Fork Knife SwoonDark Chocolate Peppermint Oreo Cookie Balls | Fork Knife Swoon

Holiday cookie season is in full swing around here! Along with my standard repertoire of cookie and holiday baking recipes, I’ve partnered with OREO to create a new take on their popular and classic recipe for OREO Cookie Balls. I’ve added dark chocolate, peppermint and a hint of espresso to the original recipe for a one-bite-of-bliss cookie/truffle with a rich and decadent flavor akin to a Peppermint Mocha.

If you’re looking for a festive and highly-customizable holiday dessert, the original OREO Cookie Ball is a great base recipe with which to get creative. The simplicity of the original (OREO cookies, cream cheese and chocolate) easily lends itself to experimentation. My version here is for the confirmed chocolate lover – I’ve packed three kinds of chocolate into each little indulgent bite – and dressed it all up for the holidays with the addition of peppermint.

While working on the recipe, I kept dreaming of other flavor possibilities as well, such as white chocolate and cinnamon, or peanut butter and semi-sweet chocolate… Whichever combination you choose, these are fun and easy cookies to make, which means less stress and more time to spend with family and friends this holiday season.

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Oreo Cookie Balls | Fork Knife SwoonDark Chocolate Peppermint Oreo Cookie Balls | Fork Knife Swoon

A few notes on the recipe:

  • Word to the wise: Do not make these while the Honey is home and/or hungry if you wish to yield the full quantity of Cookie Balls. I made the OREO cookie filling and rolled out the balls the night before I planned to coat and decorate them, and ended up dipping only about half, as the rest mysteriously disappeared from the fridge.
  • A 1-inch cookie scoop works really well for portioning out the OREO filling. While forming the cookie balls, work in batches to keep the filling cold (leaving the rest in the fridge). It also helps to wash/wipe your hands off every couple of rolls or so to help combat what can quickly become an epically sticky situation.
  • You can use any type of melted chocolate for the coating, but I would strongly recommend a dark chocolate. Look for a high-percentage of cocoa in the chocolate you choose to create a nice balance to the sweet and rich OREO cookie filling.
  • You can find the original OREO Cookie Ball recipe as well as other twists on the classic recipe, here.

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Oreo Cookie Balls | Fork Knife Swoon… 

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Summer Vegetable Lasagne

Summer Vegetable Lasagne | Fork Knife Swoon

I am not particularly a stop-and-smell-the-roses type of girl. I do in fact love roses, but it’s a constant challenge to live in the moment. And while being a consummate planner and list-maker have their upsides, being stubbornly future-oriented has a way, more often than not, of leaving me searching for the next thing. The next goal. The next achievement to cross off the list. One of the only areas in which I truly and honestly appreciate the process along the way is cooking. I can spend hours in the kitchen and cook without a recipe or measurements, by feel and by taste, and trust that the end result will end up okay. I can’t say that about most other areas of my life.

Many of the recipes that I write about here are based in family tradition. Others spring up from glorious finds at the farmer’s market, and many more have been inspired by the regional fruits and vegetables I’ve only discovered since moving to the South. That process that I love – of starting with raw ingredients or a story or a memory and carefully and instinctively creating something incredible – is a process that I want to share more of with you. A process where sometimes it all starts with a basket of beautifully-bright, variegated baby eggplant picked up on a whim from the farm stand down the road.

Summer Vegetable Lasagne | Fork Knife Swoon

Summer Vegetable Lasagne | Fork Knife Swoon
Summer Vegetable Lasagne | Fork Knife Swoon

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No-Bake Cheesecake with Nectarines and Blueberries

No-Bake Cheesecake with Nectarines and Blueberries | Fork Knife Swoon

This week marks the start of school around here, and with it pumpkin spice, a harvest palette and Halloween decor came marching in to local stores with a vengeance. Whether we like it or not, retail is ready for Fall. The days are still long, the humidity lingering into the evenings, and stone fruit and tomatoes still abound in the market, but I’m ready for the next season too.

This Summer has felt so fractured – maybe the up and down weather patterns are to blame, the heat getting such a slow start, or maybe it was the Honey being here then there then back again for work so often over the past few months – but beyond the delicious seasonal bounty of local produce at my fingertips, I just couldn’t get completely into the swing of things.

No-Bake Cheesecake with Nectarines and Blueberries | Fork Knife Swoon
No-Bake Cheesecake with Nectarines and Blueberries | Fork Knife Swoon

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Swoon Blooms {August}

Swoon Blooms April | Fork Knife Swoon

Happy Monday, Lovelies! Over the weekend the Honey and I hosted a casual BBQ for a dozen or so friends. To decorate the tables a bit, but still keep an informal feel to the festivities, I filled blue mason jars with simple, pretty flower bouquets – mixing and matching fluffy, white hydrangeas, snapdragons, purple asters, ornithogalum and assorted greenery – each one slightly different. These blooms combine with accents of sea blues, turquoises and whites for a fresh and Summer-y tabletop.

Swoon Blooms April | Fork Knife Swoon
Swoon Blooms April | Fork Knife Swoon

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Grilled Peaches + One Southern Year

Fresh Peaches | Fork Knife Swoon

Happy Fourth of July, Lovelies! I hope you are enjoying the holiday.

Today also marks exactly one year since I left my job and life in San Francisco to start a new chapter with the Honey in the deep South. Despite the many adventures we’ve had along the way, I’m not sure if it really feels like a whole year has passed. Part of me still thinks it couldn’t possibly be that long, but yet the daily details and experiences of living in the City seem ages away. Never has a decision scared me so much, and ultimately been so rewarding.

The Honey is gone again for work for the next couple of weeks, so the celebrations today will be muted. Something along the lines of dessert for one while catching up on guilty-pleasure tv shows with the pup snoring in the background.

I was thinking about the first recipe I made for Swoon after moving to the South, a rustic Peach Galette, and decided to make another simple peach dessert to mark the one year milestone. Sweet and juicy grilled peaches with a dollop of fresh whipped cream and a sprinkling of almonds was just the ticket. This recipe really couldn’t be simpler, taking advantage of flavorful, peak season fruit, and isĀ  just about the perfect Summer dessert for celebrations big and small.

Grilled Peaches | Fork Knife Swoon… 

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Pan-Seared Lamb Chops with Cippolini Onions

Pan-Seared Lamb Chops with Cippolini Onions | Fork Knife Swoon

After six long weeks of being away for work, the Honey is finally back home, and the house is starting to feel the right size again. We were curious to see how our seven-month-old puppy would react; if he would remember his Dad after that much time away, but sure enough our little guy went bounding eagerly out to the driveway for the homecoming, the wiggliest, happiest little creature you can imagine. We spent a couple of days catching up, just the two of us and the pup, schedule-free and sneaking in a few little dates here and there, before settling back into the regular routine and both returning to work this week.

I actually made these succulent, Pan-Seared Lamb Chops last week before the Honey came home – a savory comforting meal for one on a rainy, early summer evening – but with all the planning and my excitement last week before his arrival, I’m only just sharing them with you now. This is such a simple dish – quick lamb chops with fresh herbs and garlic and sweet, caramelized Cippolini onions – but so satisfying, making for an elegant and delicious dinner.

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