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When I close my eyes and think of the holidays, my senses are set ablaze.  I smell the fresh pine needles of the Christmas tree.  I hear the soulful sounds of Bing Crosby over the radio.  I feel the comfortable embrace of a warm fireplace, and above it I see the stockings hung with care.  But I taste a combination of things.  Chocolate.  Sugar.  Walnuts.  Vanilla.  Rum.  The festive flavors, indispensable ingredients and central components when making that Christmas classic- Rum Balls!

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These have always been one of my favorite holiday treats to prepare.  They’re fun to make and even more fun to eat.  Plus, when you’re all done, you get to reward yourself with a cocktail.  It’s like getting an early christmas present.  For the last few years, I’ve been using Black Rum.  I find that the rich, heavy flavor compliments the chocolate and sugar very well- but you still can’t go wrong with a clear or golden rum.  These may not be an everyday treat, but that’s part of what makes them so special.  The holidays only come around once a year.  Why not enjoy them to their fullest.

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Ingredients-

-1 Cup of semi sweet chocolate pieces

-1/2 Cup of sugar

-1/3 Cup of rum (sometimes less, sometimes more- depending on your taste)

-3 Tablespoons of corn syrup

-2 Cups of crushed vanilla wafers

-1 Cup of ground walnuts

Instructions-

1. In a saucepan, melt chocolate pieces over low heat.

2. Once melted, remove from heat.

3. Stir in sugar, rum and corn syrup.

4. Fold in vanilla wafers and walnuts.

5. Shape mixture into one inch balls, using two tablespoons for each.

6. Roll in sugar.

7. Store in air tight container for 1 to 4 days to achieve potency.  Makes up to 4 dozen.

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