Ponderosa...At Home

What better way to welcome the new year than with a sweet recipe that everyone will love—and one that pairs well with champagne!

Rum Balls

Served chilled, these balls are formed when a batch of brownies is broken into bits, flavored with dark rum, and rolled.



  • Vegetable oil, cooking spray
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) of unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 6 ounces of semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup packed of light-brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon of coarse salt
  • 3/4 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of dark rum
  • Coarse sanding sugar, for rolling



1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Coat a 12-by-17-inch rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray; set aside. Melt butter and chocolate in a small heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, stirring occasionally. Set aside.

2. Whisk together eggs, brown sugar, vanilla and salt in a large bowl. Stir in chocolate mixture and fold in flour. Pour batter into prepared baking sheet. Spread evenly with a rubber spatula. Bake about 10 minutes, until top is shiny and a cake tester, inserted into center, comes out with some crumbs attached. Let cool completely on a wire rack.

3. Break up brownie into small pieces; transfer to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. With machine on low speed, pour in rum and mix until crumbs start to come together to form a ball.

4. Shape into 1-inch balls and roll in sanding sugar to coat. Transfer to a baking sheet. Refrigerate uncovered about 2 hours, until cold. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Have a happy New Year!

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This yummy recipe is sure to make your Christmas morning even better! Enjoy!

Mascarpone-Stuffed French Toast with Salted Caramel-Banana Sauce


6 servings


20 mins


2 hrs to 24 hrs


1 hr at 375°F


12 slices of Texas toast

1 8-ounce package of cream cheese, softened

½ cup of mascarpone cheese

½ cup of chopped pecans or macadamia nuts, toasted

2 tablespoons of  packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon of salt

6 eggs, lightly beaten

3 cups of milk

¼ teaspoon of salt

1 serving of salted caramel-banana sauce (recipe below)


1. Arrange half of the bread slices in a single layer in a 3-quart rectangular baking dish. In a small bowl, combine cream cheese, mascarpone cheese, pecans, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt. Spread cheese mixture evenly over bread in baking dish. Top with the remaining bread slices to make six stacks.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, and salt. Pour egg mixture evenly over bread stacks, covering all of the tops. Cover with plastic wrap. Chill for at least 2 hours, up to 24 hours.

3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 15x10x1-inch baking pan with parchment paper. Arrange bread stacks in the prepared pan. Bake about 1 hour or until golden, turning stacks every 15 minutes. Serve warm with salted caramel-banana sauce.

Salted Caramel-Banana Sauce


¾ cup of packed brown sugar

½ cup of whipping cream

½ cup of butter

2 tablespoons of light-color corn syrup

1 teaspoon of vanilla

½ teaspoon of sea salt

1 banana


1. In a heavy medium saucepan stir together brown sugar, whipping cream, butter and light-color corn syrup. Bring to boiling over medium-high heat, whisking occasionally; reduce heat to medium. Boil gently for 3 minutes more. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and sea salt. Pour into a small bowl. Cool to room temperature. If desired, cover and chill for up to 24 hours. (If chilled, let stand at room temperature for 1 hour before serving.) Stir in banana, thinly sliced.

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Happy Holidays! Get ready to celebrate the season with new homes from Ponderosa! Enjoy this joyous time of year with family and friends in a dream place to call your very own.

Cameron Place and Ivy Lane in Pleasanton and Vinsanto II and Coventry in Livermore offer everything your growing family wants and needs in a new home – so what are you waiting for?

Visit PonderosaHomes.com for more details on these gorgeous new residences.

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The Holidays Are Here!

December 11, 2014

Get out and about and enjoy some holiday festivities this weekend in the Bay Area!

Grab some great reads and yummy treats with Santa this weekend in San Jose! Celebrate the season at a Winter Holiday Party this Saturday at the Bascom Branch Library from 11AM to 1PM. Make a craft, receive a free book and snap a pic with jolly Old St. Nick. For more info, click here.

Sugar plums will dance through your head this weekend in Livermore! Experience the music of Tchaikovsky and the magic and wonderment of The Nutcracker, this Sunday at the Bankhead Theater at 2PM. Get tickets here.

Santa Claus is making his way to Dublin this weekend! Enjoy a scrumptious pancake breakfast and take photos with Santa at the Shannon Community Center from 8:30AM to 12PM. Register here.

Hey, superstars – groove to the tunes of a legendary band this weekend in Pleasanton! CLOSE TO YOU: A Christmas Tribute to The Carpenters is happening this Sunday, December 14 at 2PM. For tickets, click here.

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The holiday season is officially here, NorCal! Come out for these festive events happening on Saturday and Sunday in the Bay Area.

See downtown San Jose turned into a whimsical holiday fantasy this weekend! Christmas in the Park at the Plaza de Cesar Chavez is an annual event featuring glittering lights, a 60-foot-tall Community Giving Tree, musical and animated exhibits, winter wonderland of lights and entertainment – now through January 1, 2015. For more info, click here. 

Lights, lights and more lights this weekend in San Jose! Festival of Lights is happening this Saturday, December 6 at Evergreen Village Square from 2PM to 5PM. Head over for holiday entertainment, cultural performances, photos with Santa and face painting. Click here to learn more. 

Sip, sip, hooray! Enjoy an assortment of tea, delectable treats and Santa this weekend in Dublin! Holiday Tea is taking place this Saturday, December 6 and Sunday, December 7 at the Sunday School Barn. Seating is available between 11AM and 2PM. Make reservations here.

A snow day is coming to downtown Livermore this weekend! The Lizzie Fountain will be transformed into a snowy winter wonderland for your little ones during Home for the Holidays, this Saturday from 10AM to 4PM. Get the details here.

Parades are definitely one of the best parts of the holiday season. Come out for the annual Hometown Holiday Parade in Pleasanton this weekend! Be a part of this festive community-based event this Saturday, December 6, starting at 5PM. Get more info here.

To make sure you’re always in the loop and up to date with everything happening in your community, be sure to LIKE the Ponderosa Facebook page.