This recipe was born out of a request by a former Broome County Undersheriff for rum balls.  I obliged with the typical holiday cookie but thought about how I could do an original take with different ingredients.  I’m really not sure what possessed me to think of Southern Comfort for the alcohol instead of rum. The idea of a whiskey base led to thinking a good flavor pair would be molasses and ginger from ginger snap cookies and we were off to the races for "Comfortable Balls!"

Kathy Whyte/WNBF News
Kathy Whyte/WNBF News

You can experiment with other cookies and alcohol pairings if you wish.

I had to do a little tweaking of the recipe since a trial batch using my original notes came out too wet and the cookies wouldn’t hold the ball shape.

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COMFORTABLE BALLS (Southern Comfort boozy cookies) (Prep. Time about an hour including chilling time.  Makes about 35 cookies depending on how big you like your balls)

24 ounces hard ginger snap cookies (about 3 cups crushed or one-and-a-half bags of store-bought cookies) finely crushed. Hang on to the other half bag if you find your balls are too wet to handle even after chilling (Quit sniggering!)

1 1/2 C. confectioner’s sugar

1 Tb light corn syrup

1 Tb honey

1 tsp. Vanilla extract

1/2 C. Southern Comfort

1/2 C. Granulated sugar plus 1 Tb. Ground cinnamon for coating.

Mix everything together but cinnamon sugar and chill 30 minutes. The dough will be very wet until it has a chance to soak up the liquids.  Spoon out about 1 tablespoon at a time. Roll between palms into a ball.  If the chilled dough is too wet to hold a ball shape, you can crush more cookies and add them in.  It's okay to have them a little soft and moist but you don't want them spreading flat when you put them on a sheet to chill or when you are ready to serve. Roll each ball in the cinnamon sugar to lightly coat. Place on sheet lined with parchment and chill at least another hour. If flattened out, gently roll back into balls and coat with another layer of cinnamon sugar. (But, honestly, once someone eats one of these hooch-laced honeys, they really won't care how flat they are!)  Keep cold until ready to serve.

They can be stored in a tight-lidded container with layers separated by wax paper or throw them in a freezer bag with a little granulated sugar to keep them from sticking together, press the air out and seal. I don't know how long it takes for the alcohol to evaporate, so I wouldn't store them for more than a few days.

Kathy Whyte/ WNBF News
Kathy Whyte/ WNBF News

(If you know anything about adult campers, you know they like their liquor. So, when it came to the idea of a dessert exchange at the campground I steered right to the booze!)

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