We are introduced, at an early age, to the sweet wondernous of a cookie. From teething cookies to soothe the swollen aching gums of incoming incisors, onto animal crackers purchased in rectangular-shaped boxes bearing a string handle for easy toting by little fingers. Deciding which part of the animal should be eaten first-the trunk of the elephant or the tail of a lion-depended on how hungry one was. Savor each and every one or simply gobble them down as fast as possible.

My next cookie memory would be the ever famous, possibly all-time favorite, the chocolate chip cookie. There is nothing better than to bite into a round circle of baked dough sprinkled with gooey melt-in-your-mouth chocolate. A chocolate chip cookie can dry tears, heal broken hearts, mend scraped knees and elbows and solve sibling arguments. Most of the problems in the world could likely be solved by a properly baked, right out of the oven, chocolate chip cookie. The power of a cookie is underestimated.

I will attempt in the next 365 days to prepare and comment on a year’s worth of different cookies-one for each day. My goal is to share with others my extreme love of cookies-baking them and especially eating them! Feel free to send me your favorite recipe, your earliest cookie memories, or how cookies may have influenced your life. Cookies Rule!


Friday, December 31, 2010

Cookie Recipe #363 - Espresso Shortbread


Need to stay awake to greet the New Year? Eat a few of these delicious shortbread cookies for that extra "burst" of energy. Make up earlier in the day, then leave in the refrigerator until evening-just slice, bake and serve!

Ingredients: 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, 1/3 cup confectioners' sugar, 1/3 cup granulated sugar, 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 2 1/2 tablespoons finely ground espresso beans, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon kosher salt.

Instructions: Place the butter and sugars in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or the bowl of a food processor fitted with the mixing blade and mix until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the flour, ground espresso beans, vanilla and salt, mix well and scrape again. Form the dough into 1 1/2-inch-diameter logs and cover with parchment paper. Place the logs in a resealable plastic bag and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 2 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or lightly spray with cooking spray; set aside. With the tip of a very sharp knife, cut 1/4 - 1/2-inch slices of the dough and place 2 inches apart on prepared pans. Bake until the cookies are just beginning to brown on the edges, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Makes about 6 dozen cookies.

"Cookies 52 Easy Recipes for Year-Round Baking", John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ, 2007.

Cookies Rule!!!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Cookie Recipe #362 - Pink Meringue Clouds


Have leftover candy canes? Today's cookie makes good use of them, even if, and especially if, they are broken. Make the meringue first, then the cookie; throw them together, bake, and you have a minty cookie.

Ingredients: Peppermint Meringue: 2 egg whites (save yolks for cookies), 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1/2 teaspoon vinegar, 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, 1 cup coarsely crushed peppermint candy. Cookies: 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 2/3 cup vegetable shortening, 2 unbeaten egg yolks, 1/4 cup milk, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 4-5 drops red food coloring, if desired.

Instructions: Prepare Meringue: Beat egg whites with salt until soft mounds form. Gradually add sugar; continue beating until meringue stands in stiff, glossy peaks. Fold in vanilla, vinegar, chocolate chips, and peppermint candy; set aside.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In large mixing bowl, beat shortening and sugar together, creaming well. Blend in egg yolks, milk, vanilla, and food coloring, if using. Add the flour, salt, and baking powder and blend thoroughly.

Shape dough into balls using a rounded teaspoonful for each. Place on ungreased baking sheets. Flatten to 1/4-inch thickness with fingers or bottom of glass covered with a damp cloth. Top each cookie with a rounded teaspoonful of Meringue.

Bake in preheated 325 degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until meringue is lightly browned. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cookies.

"Pillsbury's Best 11th Grand National Bake-Off Cookbook", presented by Mrs. Earlene Weber, Columbus, OH, 1959.

Cookies Rule!!!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Cookie Recipe #361 - German Chocolate Cookies


These truly do taste like German chocolate cake, only in cookie form. Simple to make and even simpler to eat.

Ingredients: 3/4 cups (1 1/2 sticks)unsalted butter, at room temperature, 1 cup light brown sugar, packed, 1 large egg, at room temperature, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch process cocoa, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, 2 cups sweetened coconut flakes, 1 cup pecans, lightly toasted and cooled, coarsely chopped, 4 ounces German sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped.

Instructions: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and spray lightly with cooking spray; set aside.

Beat the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl until smooth and creamy. Scrape dow the sides of the bowl, add the egg and vanilla, one at a time, mixing well between additions. Again scrape down the sides of the bowl; add the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt and mix until everything is well incorporated. Add the coconut, pecans and chocolate, and mix again.

Drop the dough by heaping teaspoons about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake in the preheated 350 degree oven 10-12 minutes or until the underside of the cookie begins to firm up. Cool on the cookie sheet before transferring to wire racks.

Makes about 3-4 dozen cookies.

"Cookies 52 Easy Recipes For Year-Round Baking", John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey, 2007.

Cookies Rule!!!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Cookie Recipe #360 - Pogasca


This is a Hungarian cookie that resembles a biscuit. In Hungarian folktales these were made as the ideal travel food for journeys.

Ingredients: 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, 3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, frozen and grated, 1 cup sour cream, 3 large egg yolks, at room temperature, 1 large egg white, beaten with a fork.

Instructions: About an hour before baking, place butter in freezer. Remove and grate in bowl; set aside.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or spray lightly with cooking spray; set aside.

Place the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix until the ingredients are well incorporated. While the mixer is going, add the frozen, grated butter, sour cream and egg yolks, one at a time, mixing well between additions, until it forms a smooth dough.

Roll the dough out to 1/2-inch thickness, punch out cookies with a 1-inch cookie cutter and transfer to the prepared baking sheets and place about 2 inches apart. Using a sharp knife, make a crisscross pattern on top. Brush with the egg white and transfer to the preheated 400 degree oven. Bake for 5 minutes and then reduce the oven to 350 degrees. Bake until golden brown, about 15-20 minutes. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

"Cookies 52 Easy Recipes For Year-Round Baking", John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ, 2007.

Cookies Rule!!!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Cookie Recipe #359 - Custard-Filled Cookies


Make the custard first in this recipe and let it chill while you make the cookies. Spread on top, sprinkle with cinnamon, confectioners' sugar or cocoa and viola! it's a cookie!

Ingredients: Custard: 1 cup sweetened condensed milk, one 1/2-inch piece vanilla beat split lengthwise OR 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 2 large egg yolks, room temperature.
Cookies: 1/2 cup butter, softened, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1 large egg, 2 tablespoons heavy cream, 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour. Topping: 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, OR 1 teaspoon confectioners' sugar OR 1 teaspoon cocoa powder.

Instructions: In a medium saucepan over medium heat, heat condensed milk with vanilla bean or vanilla extract until small bubbles form on surface.

Whisk egg yolks in a medium bowl. Stirring constantly, slowly add 1/2 cup of the hot milk to the egg yolks. Add the tempered egg yolks to the milk mixture in the saucepan. Stirring constantly with a metal spoon or whisk, cook for 5 minutes or until custard heavily coats the back of a spoon. Be careful not to let the custard boil.

Strain custard through a sieve. Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.

Cookies: Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Mix butter and sugar in medium bowl; add egg and cream and mix until thoroughly blended. Scrape sides of bowl. Add the flour and blend on low speed just until combined. Do not overmix.

Shape dough into 1-inch balls and place on ungreased cookie sheets 1 inch apart. With your thumb or the back of a small spoon, form a small depression in center of each ball.

Bake 15-17 minutes or until bottoms begin to brown. Transfer cookies to cool, flat surface. When cookies cool to room temperature, spoon or pipe in 1 1/2 teaspoons of chilled thickened custard. Sprinkle with ground cinnamon, confectioners' sugar or cocoa, if desired.

Makes 1 1/2-2 dozen cookies.

"Mrs. Fields Cookie Book", Time-Life Books Inc., Alexandria, VA, 1992.

Cookies Rule!!!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Cookie Recipe #358 - Snickerdoodle Sandwiches


This is the advanced version of Cookie Recipe #3-Snickerdoodles. The creamy filling completes the cinnamon and sugar cookies. You may either use recipe #3 or use a pre-packaged container of refrigerated sugar cookie dough.

Ingredients: 3 T. granulated sugar, 1 1/2 t. ground cinnamon, 1 16 1/2-ounce package refrigerated sugar cookie dough (or use recipe #3 from 1-5-10). Filling: 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened, 3 tablespoons honey, 3 tablespoons raisins, golden or regular (optional).

Instructions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a small bowl, combine sugar and 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon; set aside. Shape cookie dough into 3/4-1 inch balls; roll in cinnamon/sugar mixture to coat. Place balls 1 inch apart on ungreased baking sheets.

Bake in preheated 375 degree oven 7-9 minutes or just until edges are firm. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool.

Make filling: In medium bowl, combine cream cheese, honey and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Beat with a wire whisk until smooth. If desired, stir in raisins.

Spread filling generously on the bottoms of half the cookies. Top with remaining cookies, flat sides down, pressing lightly together.

Makes about 24 sandwiches.

http://www.bhg.com/recipe/cookies/snickerdoodle-sandwiches/

Cookies Rule!!!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Cookie Recipe #357 - Peppermint Candy Canes


This is the last of the Christmas Cookie Recipes. Hope you have tried one or two of them with your family. Try this one between Christmas and New Year's for a minty treat!

Ingredients: 1/3 cup butter, softened, 1/3 cup shortening, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon baking powder, dash of salt, 1 egg, 1 tablespoon milk, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract (optional), 1/2 cup crushed peppermint candy canes. Icing: 1 cup sifted powdered sugar, 2-3 tablespoons milk, or more.

Instructions: In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and shortening. Add the granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt; beat until combined. Mix in egg, milk, vanilla, crushed peppermint candy canes, and peppermint extract, if using. Lastly, add flour, mixing until thoroughly combined. Cover and chill in refrigerator for 30-60 minutes, or until easy to handle.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Divide dough into 12 equal portions. On lightly floured surface, roll each portion into a 12-inch-long rope. Cut each rope into 4 equal pieces and place each piece on an ungreased baking sheet curving one end to form a candy cane.

Bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 7-8 minutes or until edges are firm and bottoms are very lightly browned. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool.

Make icing: In small bowl, beat powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons milk. Continue adding more milk until mixture is smooth and of drizzling consistency. Drizzle generously over each candy cane.

Makes 4 dozen candy canes.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003. (with a few of my own additions or subtractions)

Cookies Rule!!!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Cookie Recipe #356 - Nutella Nuggets


Need a simple recipe that's quick, doesn't require alot of ingredients and are so good you may have to double the batch? Today's cookie fits the bill.

Ingredients: 1 cup Nutella spread, 1 cup graham cracker crumbs, 1 large egg, powdered sugar for sprinkling.

Instructions: With a mixer or in a food processor, mix Nutella, crumbs and egg. Form into 1 inch balls and place 1 1/2 inches apart on greased baking sheets (if sticky, dampen fingers first). Let rest for 20 minutes (check out other recipes on this blog while waiting..).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake cookies for 8 minutes. Allow to cool on sheet on a wire rack. Before removing dust heavily with powdered sugar (let it snow!).

Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

This was posted by Zil2 at www.eons.com. She says it won 2nd place in the Dallas Morning News' Christmas cookie contest. I can see why, wonder what 1st place was???

Cookies Rule!!!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Cookie Recipe #355 - Swirled Mint Cookies


These cute little cookies are mint-flavored and dusted with colored sugar before baking.

Ingredients: 2 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1 cup butter, softened, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract, red food coloring, green food coloring, colored sugar.

Instructions: In a large mixing bowl beat butter; add the sugar and mix well. Beat in egg, vanilla and peppermint extract until combined. Add in flour until thoroughly incorporated.

Divide dough into 3 equal portions. Stir red food coloring into one portion; green into another, and leave remaining portion plain. Cover and chill dough about 1 hour or until easy to handle.

Divide each color of dough into four equal portions. On a lightly floured surface, roll each portion into a 1/2-inch diameter rope. Place one red, one green, and one plain rope side by side. Twist together. Repeat with remaining ropes. Chill dough for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut ropes into 1/2-inch slices. Carefully roll slices into balls, blending colors as little as possible. Place balls about 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets. Flatten to 1/4-inch thickness. Sprinkle colored sugar (or plain sugar) over each cookie generously.

Bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 8-10 minutes. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

Makes about 6 dozen cookies.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Cookie Recipe #354 - Elfin Shortbread Bites


Only 4 ingredients make up this simple Christmas shortbread. At any other time of the year use different colors of sprinkles rather than the red and green. These are good little nibblers and look pretty lying randomly on a plate.

Ingredients: 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, 1/2 cup butter,diced, 2 tablespoons colored sprinkles.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a medium mixing bowl stir together flour and sugar. Using a pastry blender (or your fingers), cut in butter until mixture resembles fine crumbs and starts to cling. Stir in colored sprinkles. Form mixture into a ball and knead until smooth.

Pat or roll the dough into an 8x5-inch rectangle on an ungreased cookie sheet; cut into 1/2-inch squares. Separate the squares on the cookie sheet.

Bake in preheated 325 degree oven for 12-14 minutes or until bottoms just start to brown. Transfer cookies to wire racks covered with waxed paper and let cool.

Makes about 160 bites.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Cookie Recipe #353 - Eggnog Thumbprints


The smell of nutmeg will fill your house and make it smell like Christmas.

Ingredients: 3/4 cup butter, softened, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 2 egg yolks, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 2 slightly beaten egg whites, 1 cup finely chopped walnuts. Rum filling: 1/4 cup softened butter, 1 cup sifted powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon rum or 1/4 teaspoon rum extract, 1-2 teaspoons milk, ground nutmeg for sprinkling.

Instructions: In a large mixing bowl beat butter for 30 seconds. Add sugar and the 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in egg yolks and vanilla until combined. Beat in flour until thoroughly mixed. Cover and chill dough about 1 hour or until easy to handle.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll balls in egg whites; roll in chopped walnuts to coat. Place balls about 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheets. Press your thumb or finger into the center of each ball to form an indentation.

Bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 10-12 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and let cool.

Make filling: In a small bowl beat softened butter; add powdered sugar until fluffy. Beat in rum or rum extract and enough milk to make of spreading consistency.

Just before serving, pipe or spoon about 1/2 teaspoon of filling into the center of each cookie. Sprinkle with additional nutmeg.

Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Cookie Recipe #352 - Peppermint Corn Flake Macaroons


This is a chewy cookie with the crunchiness of crushed candy canes. It is a simple recipe to whip up and bake. You may omit the crushed candy canes and use cut-up maraschino cherries instead (top with a cherry half).

Ingredients: 4 egg whites, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar, 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar, 1 cup chopped pecans, 1 cup shredded coconut, 3 cups corn flakes cereal, 3/4-1 cup crushed peppermint candies (or candy canes).

Instructions: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets or line with parchment paper; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, beat egg whites until foamy. Stir in vanilla and cream of tartar. Gradually add sugar, beating until stiff and glossy. Fold in pecans, coconut, corn flakes and 1/2 cup of the crushed peppermint candy. Drop mixture by rounded tablespoons onto prepared baking sheets about 2 inches apart. Sprinkle tops with some of the remaining crushed peppermint candy.

Bake in preheated 325 degree oven about 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Transfer immediately to wire racks to cool completely.

Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

"Treasury of Holiday Cookies", Publications International Ltd., Lincolnwood, IL, 1994.

Cookies Rule!!!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Cookie Recipe #351 - Candy Shop Pizza Cookie


Only a true chocolate lover will be able to partake of more than one bite of today's cookie. The base is a chocolate-chip-cookie dough, the toppings are endless and the result is a chocolate (and peanut butter)explosion in your mouth. I dare you to eat a whole slice!

Ingredients: 1 1/2 all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 10 tablespoons butter, softened, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar, 1 egg, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided, 1/2 cup peanut butter (I used crunchy), 1 cup cut-up fruit, such as bananas and strawberries (optional-I didn't use any fruit), 1 cup chopped candy bars, any variety.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease a 12 to 14-inch pizza pan or a 15 1/2x10 1/2-inch jelly-roll pan; set aside.

In large mixer bowl, beat butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla extract. Gradually beat in flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir in 1 cup of the chocolate chips. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan and bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 20-24 minutes or until lightly browned.

Immediately sprinkle remaining 1 cup of chocolate chips over crust; drop peanut butter by spoonfuls oonto morsels. Let stand 5 minutes or until soft and shiny. Gently spread chocolate and peanut butter ovr crust. Top with fruit (optional) and candy. Cut into wedges. Serve warm.

Makes about 12 servings for the brave; 24 for the not-so-brave (or smarter).

"Treasury of Holiday Cookies", Publications International, Ltd., Lincolnwood, IL, 1994.

Cookies Rule!!!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Cookie Recipe #350 - Maple Log Cabins and Trees


Oh, the sweetness of maple syrup...almost like eating a pancake or waffle drizzled in it without the stickiness. Make whatever shape you would like-experiment!

Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups butter, softened, 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar, 2 eggs, 1/4 cup maple-flavored syrup (the real stuff is the best), 4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 cup finely chopped toasted pecans (or untoasted), 1 slightly beaten egg white, 1 tablespoon water. Maple Frosting: 2 tablespoons butter, 3/4-1 cup sifted powdered sugar, 3 tablespoons maple-flavored syrup, food coloring, if desired.

Instructions: In large mixing bowl, beat butter for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar and beat until combined. Add in eggs and syrup, mixing well. Stir in flour and pecans and beat until thoroughly incorporated.

Divide dough in half. Cover and chill for 1-2 hours or until easy to handle.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Divide each half of dough into 12 portions. Roll each portion into a 10-inch-long rope on lightly floured surface. For a cabin, cut a rope into five 2-inch logs. To assemble, place the three logs horizontally on an ungreased cookie sheet; press together slightly to form cabin. Place remaining two logs in an inverted V shape above cabin; press ends against cabin corners to form roof.

For a tree, cut a rope into six pieces: one 3-inch piece, one 2 1/2-inch piece, one 2-inch, two 1-inch, and one 1/2-inch. To assemble, place the 3-inch piece horizontally on the cookie sheet; add the 2 1/2-inch piece, the 2-inch, a 1-inch, and the 1/2-inch piece; press together slightly to form tree. Place remaining 1-inch piece vertically below tree; press in place to form trunk.

Brush trees and/or cabins with a mixture of egg white and water. Bake in preheated 375 degree oven 8-10 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Cool on cookie sheet for 1 minute before carefully tranferring to wire racks to cool.

Make Maple frosting: In medium mixing bowl, beat butter. Gradually beat in 1/4 cup of the powdered sugar. Mix in maple syrup. Gradually beat in enough of the remaining powdered sugar to make of piping consistency. If desired, tint with food coloring. Decorate cookies with frosting. If desired, while frosting is still wet, add nonpareils or chopped nuts.

Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Cookie Recipe #349 - Eggnog Bears


These cute little bears have a golden tummy consisting of crushed butterscotch hard candies. Eggnog is a welcome addition to this sugar cookie and is finalized with an eggnog glaze.

Ingredients: 2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 cup granulated sugar, 3/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 2/3 cup butter, softened, 1 slightly beaten egg, 1/4 cup dairy eggnog, 1/2 cup finely crushed butterscotch-or rum-flavored hard candies (about twenty-five 1-inch candies). Eggnog Glaze: 3 cups sifted powdered sugar, 1/4 teaspoon rum extract (or vanilla), 2-3 tablespoons dairy eggnog (or more).

Instructions: In a large mixing bowl, stir together flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, nutmeg, and salt. Using a pastry blender (or your fingers), cut in butter until the pieces are the size of small peas. Make a well in center of flour mixture; set aside. In a small mixing bowl, combine egg and eggnog. Add all at once to flour mixture. Stir just until combined. Cover and chill dough about 2 hours or until easy to handle.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with foil; set aside. On a well floured surface, roll dough until 1/4 inch thick. Using floured 2 1/2-inch cookie cutters (I used a bear), cut into desired shapes. Place 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheets. Cut small shapes (I used a heart) out of cookie centers. Fill each center cutout with some of the crushed candy.

Bake in preheated 375 degrees oven for 6-8 minutes or until edges are firm and lightly browned. Cool on cookie sheet for 5 minutes before sliding cookies still on foil onto heatproof surface to cool completely.

Make Eggnog Glaze: In a medium bowl, stir together sifted powdered sugar and rum extract (or vanilla). Add enough eggnog to make of drizzling consistency. Drizzle generously over each cookie and allow to set.

Carefully remove cookies from foil by sliding an offset metal spatula (or knife) under each with a sawing motion.

Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Cookie Recipe #348 - Holiday Citrus Logs


Some chewy ingredients are used to make these citrusy logs that require no baking. They do need, however, 3-4 days for the flavors to blend, so plan ahead, then just slice and serve.

Ingredients: 1 (12-ounce)package vanilla wafers, crushed (about 3 cups), 1 (8-ounce) package candied cherries, coarsely chopped, 1 (8-ounce)package chopped dates, (1 3/4 cups), 1 cup chopped pecans or almonds, 1/4 cup lemon juice, 2 tablespoons orange-flavored liqueur (or orange juice), 1 tablespoon white corn syrup, additional 1-2 tablespoons white corn syrup, heated, additional finely chopped pecans or sliced almonds, toasted.

Instructions: In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients except additional corn syrup and finely chopped nuts. Shape into two 10-inch logs. Brush with additional corn syrup; roll in finely chopped nuts. Wrap tightly in waxed paper or parchment paper; refrigerate for 3-4 days to blend flavors. To serve, unwrap and cut into 1/4-inch slices.

Makes 2 (10-inch) logs.

"Treasury of Holiday Cookies", Publications International, Ltd., Lincolnwood, IL, 1994.

Cookies Rule!!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Cookie Recipe #347 - Frosties


More snowmen!!! As if they aren't enough snowmen in my house (ask my husband) I added a few more today. This is a simple recipe that provides you the opportunity to add your own special touches.

Ingredients: 1 cup butter, softened, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, miniature semisweet chocolate chips, 24 gumdrops (if desired), fruit roll-ups, decorating icing.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter for 30 seconds. Add sugar, vanilla, and salt, beating until combined. Gradually add in flour and mix thoroughly.

For each snowman, shape dough into three balls: one 1-inch ball, one 3/4-inch ball, and one 1/2-inch ball. Place balls on an ungreased baking sheet in decreasing sizes with edges touching. Press together slightly, forming a snowman shape. Insert two mini chocolate chips in the smallest ball for eyes, and one in the middle ball and two in the largest ball for buttons.

Bake in preheated 325 degree oven for 18-20 minutes or until set. Carefully transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

For hat, roll a gumdrop into an oval shape (about 1 1/2x1 inches) on a sugared surface. Roll oval into a cone shape; press to seal ends. Curl up bottom edge of coone to form hat brim. Attach to head with Decorating Icing (recipe below). Cut a fruit roll-up about 6 inches long into 3 thin strips. Wrap one around each snowman's neck representing a scarf. Pipe on brooms and faces with icing, if desired; let icing dry.

Decorating Icing: In a small bowl stir together 1 cup sifted powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon milk to make of piping consistency. Tint with food coloring, if desired.

Substitutions for buttons: mini candy-coated chocolate candies or candy-coated peanut butter candies, small pieces of nuts, cut-up raisins, cut-up dates, etc.

Makes about 2 dozen snowmen.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!! (So do snowmen..)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Cookie Recipe #346 - Christmas Cookies


These tasty Christmas cookies are made with crushed rice cereal (Rice Krispies) and marzipan.

Ingredients: 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 2 tablespoons marzipan, 1 egg, 1 cup crushed crispy rice cereal, 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, red and green food coloring, colored sugar and/or sprinkles.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets or line with parchment paper; set aside.

Crush cereal by placing in a resealable plastic bag and using a rolling pin to go back and forth until finely crushed (or use a meat mallet). In a large mixing bowl, cream butter with sugar. Soften marzipan with a fork in a small bowl and blend into creamed mixture. Add egg, cereal, then flour, mixing well after each addition.

Divide dough into 3 portions, adding red food coloring to one and green to another. Turn each portion onto well-floured surface, kneading a few times until dough becomes elastic.

Roll dough, one portion at a time, on floured surface, about 1/4-inch thick. Cut into Christmas shapes of choice. Decorate with colored sugar and/or sprinkles and arrange on baking sheets. Bake 8-10 minutes in preheated 350 degree oven until firm. Do not let cookies brown. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

Makes 3-4 dozen depending on size of cookie cutters.

"The Ultimate Cookie Book", Tormont Publications, Inc., Montreal, Canada, 1997.

Cookies Rule!!!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Cookie Recipe #345 - Spicy Cocoa Cookies


Even though these aren't necessarily Christmas cookies, a couple drops of red or green food coloring added to the icing would make them more festive.

Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks)unsalted butter, softened, 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar, 2 large eggs, at room temperature, 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder, 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon. Icing: 1 cup confectioners' sugar, 1 large egg white, 1/4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice.

Instructions: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

Place the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and mix until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and the eggs, one at a time, mixing well between additions. Add remaining ingredients and mix until everything is well incorporated. Scrape down the sides and mix again.

Drop the dough by heaping teaspoons about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Using your hand or the bottom of a glass, press down until they are flattened.

Bake in preheated 375 degree oven until the cookies begin to brown at the edges, 8-10 minutes. Cool on the baking sheet for a minute before transferring to wire racks to cool.

While cookies are cooling, make the icing: Place the sugar, egg white nd lemon juice in a small bowl and stir until smooth. Using the back of a spoon, smooth the icing in a circular motion onto the cooled cookies, almost to the edge.

Makes 3-4 dozen cookies.

"Cookies, 52 Easy Recipes for Year-Round Baking", Sally Sampson, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ, 2007.

Cookies Rule!!!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Cookie Recipe #344 - Marshmallow Snowmen


These are almost too cute to eat (almost). Another kid-friendly recipe that requires no baking, just a little assembly.

Ingredients: 12 vanilla caramels, unwrapped (1/4 of a 14-ounce package), 3 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk, 2 tablespoons butter, 1 10-ounce bag marshmallows (large), marshmallow creme (optional), pretzel sticks, 1 cup chopped nuts, toasted coconut, toffee pieces, and/or 1/3 cup nonpareils, 4 ounces bittersweet, semisweet, or milk chocolate pieces, 2 teaspoons shortening, orange-colored miniature candy-coated semisweet chocolate pieces or other tiny round candies (I used butterscotch chips; could use peanut butter ones).

Instructions: On small baking pan spread evenly 1 cup flaked coconut. Bake in preheated 400 degree oven about 10 minutes or until browned (stir halfway through); allow to cool.

Line a large baking sheet with foil; butter or spray the foil; set aside. In a small saucepan, combine caramels, sweetened condensed milk, and butter. Heat and stir over medium-low heat unti mixture is melted and smooth.

Using kitchen scissors or sharp knife, cut 1/3 of the marshmallows in half crosswise (run knife or scissors under hot water to prevent sticking). Place each marshmallow half, sticky side down, on top of a whole marshmallow. Press together gently. If necessary, spread a small amount of marshmallow creme between the marshmallow pieces to hold them together. For arms, insert a pretzel stick into two opposite sides of each whole marshmallow.

Dip bottom third of each of the marshmallow stacks into melted caramel mixture. Allow excess to drip off. Place dipped marshmallows on prepared baking sheet.

Place nuts, coconut, toffee pieces, and/or nonpareils in separate small bowls. In another small saucepan, combine chocolate and shortening. Heat and stir chocolate mixture over low heat until melted and smooth.

Dip each caramel-coated marshmallow stack in melted chocolate, covering the bottom of stack with chocolate. Allow excess to drip off. Immediately dip into nuts, coconut, toffee bits and/or nonpareils. Return marshmallow stack to baking sheet. Let stand about 30 minutes or until chocolate sets.

Re-melt chocolate in saucepan over low heat. Place snowmen on their backs. To make eyes and buttons, dip one end of a remaining pretzel stick into melted chocolate and dab chocolate onto snowmen (I spread a little chocolate on bottoms of mini chocolate chips then placed on snowmen, pressing lightly). For a nose, dab some chocolate on one side of a small orange-colored candy and attach to snowmen. Let stand about 5 minutes or until dry.

Makes 26 snowmen.

To store: Layer snowmen between pieces of waxed paper in an airtight container, cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

http://www.bhg.com/recipe/cookies/marshmallow-snowmen.

Cookies Rule!!!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Cookie Recipe #343 - Yule Logs


These little cookie logs are sweet and slightly spicy; the browned butter frosting makes the perfect topping.

Ingredients: 1 cup butter, softened, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/4 cup packed brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, 1 egg, 1 tablespoon dark rum (or an extra teaspoon of vanilla), 1 teaspoon vanilla, 3 cups all-purpose flour. Frosting: 1/2 cup butter, 5 cups sifted powdered sugar, 1/4 cup milk, 2 teaspoons vanilla. Colored sugar or sprinkles, for decorating.

Instructions: In a large mixing bowl, beat butter; add granulated sugar, brown sugar, nutmeg, and ginger. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in egg, rum, and vanilla until combined. Add in flour until thoroughly incorporated.

Divide dough into six portions. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill about 30 minutes or until easy to handle.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, shape each dough portion into a 1/2-inch thick rope. Cut ropes into 3-inch logs. Place logs 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets.

Bake about 12 minutes or until lightly browned. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool.

Make frosting: In a small saucepan heat the 1/2 cup butter over low heat until melted. Continue heating until butter turns a delicate brown. Remove from heat; pour butter into a medium mixing bowl. Add powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla. Beat until combined. Add additional milk (1-2 tablespoons), as necessary, to make of spreading consistency.

Spread frosting over each log. Run a fork lengthwise along log so frosting resembles bark. Sprinkle lightly with colored sugar or sprinkles. Let frosting dry before devouring.

Makes about 4 dozen logs.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Cookie Recipe #342 - Cinnamon Christmas Stars


These 3-dimensional cookies are cinnamony-sweet, but can be difficult to assemble. Make sure the cookies bake long enough so that they don't fall apart while building (if they fall apart, the baker gets to eat them).

Ingredients: 1/4 cup packed brown sugar, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup butter, softened, 1/4 cup vegetable shortening, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 2 eggs, 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/2-1 teaspoon cinnamon.

Instructions: In a large mixing bowl, mix together brown sugar, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, butter, shortening, vanilla, and eggs. Stir in flour, baking powder, and salt until thoroughly combined. Cover and chill for at least one hour or until easy to handle.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Roll dough 1/8 inch thick on lightly floured surface. Press out cookies with a 2 1/2 inch star-shaped cookie cutter. Cut a 1/4 inch slit between 2 points on each star, cutting just past the center. Place on ungreased baking sheets.

Mix together 1/4 cup granulated sugar and cinnamon in small bowl; sprinkle generously over cookies. Bake 6-8 minutes until golden. Let cool for 1 minute before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

Fit cookies together, two by two, at the slits. (You may need to widen the slits with a sharp knife, cutting a little off of each side of the slit).

Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

"The Ultimate Cookie Book", Tormont Publications Inc., Montreal, 1997.

Cookies Rule!!!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Cookie Recipe #341 - Sour Cream Snowflakes


We don't get snow here in this part of California where I live, but today, in my kitchen, there were snowflakes...and they were filled with a mound of preserves...and you can eat them...I love Christmas cookies!

Ingredients: 1/2 cup butter, softened, 1/3 cup shortening, 1 cup granulated sugar, 3/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, 1/3 cup dairy sour cream, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1/3 cup raspberry preserves (or strawberry or apricot), sifted powdered sugar.

Instructions: In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and shortening for 30 seconds. Add granulated sugar, baking powder, and baking soda; beat until combined. Mix in sour cream, egg, and vanilla until combined. Beat in flour; mix thoroughly. Divide dough in half, cover and chill for 1-2 hours or until easy to handle.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll half of the dough until 1/8 inch thick. Using a floured 2 1/2-inch star-shape cookie cutter, cut out dough. Cut a small star shape (or circle) from the center of half of the stars. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased baking sheets.

Bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 7-8 minutes or until edges are firm and bottoms are very lightly browned. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool completely.

Spread the center of the plain star cookies with about 1/4 teaspoon of preserves. Top with cutout star cookies, flat sides down, offsetting the points of the top and bottom cookies to look like a snowflake. Sprinkle cookies with powdered sugar.

Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Cookie Recipe #340 - Biscochitos


These cookies are made during the Christmas season in areas of Mexico and the American Southwest. The crushed anise seeds in this buttery cookie remind you of chewing on a piece of black licorice.

Ingredients: 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 teaspoons anise seeds, crushed, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 1/4 cups butter-flavored shortening, 1 egg, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 3 tablespoons orange juice, 1 teaspoon vanilla, cinnamon-sugar (optional), crushed anise seeds (optional).

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

In a medium bowl, stir together flour, the 1 1/2 teaspoons anise seeds, baking powder, and salt. In a large mixing bowl, beat shortening for 30 seconds. Add egg, sugar, orange juice, and vanilla. Bat unti light. Add in flour until thoroughly mixed. Divide dough in half.

On a lightly floured surface, roll half of the dough at a time until 1/4 inch thick. Using floured 2 1/2-inch cookie cutters, cut into desired shapes. Place 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheets. If desired, sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar and additional crushed anise seeds.

Bake in preheated 350 degree oven about 9 minutes or until bottoms are golden brown. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool.

Makes 3-4 dozen cookies.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Cookie Recipe #339 - Mocha Rum Balls


This rum ball is made with a mixture of crushed gingersnaps (the hard ones), coconut, chopped walnuts, dissolved coffee crystals and a coconut-rum liqueur. After forming into balls, these little morsels are rolled in either cocoa powder or powdered sugar. They look pretty on a plate served at your Christmas party. (If time permits, make a week ahead and store in an airtight container to allow the flavor to intensify).

Ingredients: 2 cups finely crushed ginger snaps (place in a resealable plastic bag and push a rolling pin back and forth over the bag until cookies are crumbs), 1 cup powdered sugar, 1/2 cup shredded coconut, 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts, 2 tablespoons cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon instant coffee crystals, 1 tablespoon boiling water, 2 tablespoons corn syrup, 4 tablespoons coconut-rum liqueur, powdered sugar and cocoa powder for rolling.

Instructions: Combine ginger snaps, powdered sugar, coconut, walnuts and cocoa in large mixing bowl. In a small saucepan heat water to boiling: add coffe crystals and stir to dissolve. Add corn syrup and heat gently until blended. Pour over dry ingredients and mix using tips of fingers. Add only enough liqueur to hold ingredients together when squeezed.

Shape dough into 1 inch balls and roll either in powdered sugar or cocoa powder. Store in an airtight container unti flavors blend (at least 1 day; 1 week if possible). If desired, roll again in powdered sugar or cocoa just before serving.

"The Ultimate Cookie Book", Tormont Publications Inc., Montreal, Canada, 1997.

Cookies Rule!!!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Cookie Recipe #338 - Jewelled Christmas Trees


These are fun to make with your kids-they will enjoy punching out the holes and filling them with gumdrops. Make sure to punch a small hole at the top of the tree if you want to use them as an ornament-they look pretty on the tree.

Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 6 tablespoons butter, diced, 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, 1 egg white, 2 tablespoons orange juice, 8 ounces colored gumdrops, thin ribbon for hanging.

Instructions: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside. Sift flour into a large mixing bowl, add the butter and rub it into the flour with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar, egg white, and enough orange juice to form a soft dough. Knead on a lightly floured surface until smooth.

Roll out thinly and stamp out Christmas trees. Transfer shapes to prepared baking sheets, spacing 2 inches apart. Using a 1/2-inch round cookie cutter or the end of a large plain piping tip, stamp out and remove six rounds from each tree shape. (I used the end of my pepper shaker). Cut each gumdrop into 3 parts and place one piece in each hole. Make a small hole at the top of each tree to thread through the ribbon (I used a straw).

Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the cookies are golden and the gumdrops have melted and filled the holes. Cool on the baking sheets. Thread short lengths of ribbon through the holes so that the cookies can be hung on your Christmas tree.

Makes 12 Christmas trees.

"The Cookie and Bicuit Bible", Hermes House, Anness Publishing Ltd, London, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Cookie Recipe #337 - Marbled Holiday Greetings


Each color in these rectangle-shaped greeting card cookies sports a different flavor.
Depending on how many cookies you desire, you may want to cut this recipe in half; it makes a cookie-jar-full.

Ingredients: 1 cup butter,softened, 2/3 cup shortening, 2 cups granulated sugar, 2/3 cup dairy sour cream, 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 5 cups all-purpose flour, assorted food coloring, 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract, 1/2 teaspoon almond extract, 1 teaspoon finely shredded lime peel. Icing: 4 cups powdered sugar, 3 tablespoons milk (or more).

Instructions: In large mixing bowl beat butter and shortening. Add sugar, sour cream, eggs, vanilla, baking powder, soda, and salt. Beat until combined. Beat in flour until thoroughly incorporated. Divide dough into six equal portions. To one portion add purple food coloring and the almond extract; to another, add green food coloring and the lime peel; to another, add red food coloring and peppermint extract. Leave 3 portions plain. Cover all and refrigerate at least 1 hour or unti easy to handle.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On a floured surface, break off pieces of plain dough and each of the colored doughs. Place alternately on surface to form an 11x7-inch rectangle, pressing pieces together. Roll into a 12-inch square that is 1/4-inch thick, creating a marble effect. Trim edges of the marbled square; cut square into 48 3x1-inch rectangles. Repeat with remaining dough portions. Place rectangles 1 inch apart on ungreased baking sheets.

Bake in preheated 375 degree oven 7-8 minutes or until edges are very lightly browned. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Make Icing: In a large bowl combine powdered sugar and milk; stir until smooth. Stir in additional milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until of piping consistency. If desired, tint icing. Pipe "Joy", "Noel", or "Peace" onto each cookie or just frost each cookie; let icing dry.

Makes 144 cookies.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Cookie Recipe #336 - Rosettes


A rosette iron is needed to make this cookie, but maybe if you don't have one, you could borrow a friend's. These remind of the churros I made earlier in the year only they are sprinkled with powdered sugar rather than granulated sugar. If deep fried foods are a no-no you may want to skip this recipe (or only eat a half:)).

Ingredients: 1 cup all-purpose flour, 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 2 eggs, 1/2 cup whipping cream, 1/2 cup milk, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, oil for deep-frying, powdered sugar.

Instructions: Place 2 inches of oil in the bottom of a heavy saucepan and heat to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine flour, granulated sugar, and salt; mix well. Add eggs, cream, milk and vanilla, blending until smooth.

Preheat rosette iron by dipping in hot oil for a minute, shake off excess oil and immediately dip into batter, being careful not to coat top of iron, only bottom and sides. Then dip iron into hot oil until rosette is golden, about 20-40 seconds. Gently remove rosette from iron with a fork and drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining batter.

When rosettes are cool, sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Makes 1 1/2 dozen.

"The Ultimate Cookie Book", Tormont Publications, Montreal, Canada, 1997.

Cookies Rule!!!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Cookie Recipe #335 - Chocolate Reindeer


Make a batch of these for your child's school Christmas party.

Ingredients: 1 cup butter, softened, 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, 1/3 cup cocoa powder, 2 teaspoons cream of tartar, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 3 eggs, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, pretzel twists, candy-coated chocolate pieces, small gumdrops.

Instructions: In a large mixing bowl, beat butter. Add sugar, cocoa powder, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. Beat until combined. Beat in eggs and vanilla until combined. Mix in flour. Divide dough into six equal portions. Cover and chill dough about 3 hours or until easy to handle.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll one portion of the dough at a time into a 6-inch diameter circle. Using a sharp knife, cut each circle into 6 wedges. Place 2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet.

For antlers, on each triangle lightly press a pretzel into the upper corners. Press in chocolate pieces for eyes. For a nose, press a gumdrop into the dough triangle about 1/2 inch from the point.

Bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 7-9 minutes or until edges are firm (do not overbake). Cool on baking sheet for 1 minute before transferring to wire racks to cool.

Makes about 3 dozen reindeer.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Cookie Recipe #334 - Coconut Rum Gems


This rum ball is different from the typical rum ball. Crushed corn flakes and the citrus peel give them a unique taste. If you don't want to use alcohol, try 1 teaspoon of either vanilla or almond extract.

Ingredients: 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1 cup crushed corn flakes (measure after crushing), 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup chopped nuts (I used walnuts), 1/2 cup flaked coconut 1/4 cup chopped orange and lemon peel, 2 eggs, 1 tablespoon rum (I used Malibu coconut rum), 1/2 - 3/4 cup shredded coconut.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, mix together flour, corn flakes, sugar, nuts, coconut, and peel. In a small bowl, beat eggs with rum; blend into dry ingredients.

Drop small spoonfuls of batter into shredded coconut. Shape into 1 inch balls and place on prepared baking sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes, or unti firm. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

Makes 3 dozen cookies.

"The Ultimate Cookie Book", Tormont Publications, Inc., Montreal, Canada, 1997.

Cookies Rule!!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Cookie Recipe #333 - Church Windows


This was a request from my sister-in-law, Angie, whose Grandmother made them when she was a child. My neighbor, Gail, makes this delicious cookie with her nieces, Amanda and Megan, every Christmas season for their Christmas experience (rather than a gift). The recipe is very simple, only 3 ingredients, but oh-so-good! Mostly chocolate reigns here along with dots of marshmallows.

Ingredients: 1 (12 ounce)package semisweet chocolate chips, 1 stick butter, 1 package colored marshmallows (I used the red and green Christmas version).

Instructions: Melt the chocolate chips and butter either in the microwave or on top of the stove, stirring until butter and chocolate are both melted and mixture is smooth. Remove from heat and stir occasionally until slightly cooled. Add in marshmallows in a folding motion until completely covered with chocolate.

Drop on 2 sheets of waxed paper (or parchment paper) and form into 2 logs about 12 inches long. Wrap tightly in the waxed paper and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours. Remove to cutting surface and cut into 1/2-inch slices.

Makes about 50 church windows.

Cookies Rule!!!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Cookie Recipe #332 - Play Dough Cookies


The mixture of colors in this lollipop cookie portrays a resemblance to play dough, thus the name. It is basically a sugar cookie on a stick that your kids will enjoy eating (adults, too).

Ingredients: 3/4 cup butter, softened, 3 ounces cream cheese, softened, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon salt, assorted colors of food coloring, 24 lollipop sticks.

Instructions: In a bowl cream butter, cream cheese, and sugar until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla; beat until smooth.

In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Add dry ingredients to the creamed mixture. Stir till soft dough forms. Divide dough into fourths. Tint each with a different food color. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2 baking sheets or line with parchment paper; set aside. Working with half of each color, shape dough into 3/4 inch balls and for each cookie place 1 pink, 1 blue, 1 green and 1 orange (or colors of choice) ball together to make 1 large ball. Shape into a 12 inch long rope; starting at one end, coil roll to make a 2 /34 inch round cookie. Place cookies 3 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Carefully insert lollipop sticks into bottoms of cookies. Continue with other half.

Bake cookies for 8 minutes or until lightly browned. Allow to cool on baking sheets.

Makes 24 lollipop cookies.

Submitted by Terri on http://allrecipes.com., 2010.

Cookies Rule!!!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Cookie Recipe #331 - Clove Cookies


A cookie using a different spice, cloves, reminds me of the glaze I use on my ham. The cookie is crisp and spicy.

Ingredients: 1/2 cup butter, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1 egg, 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon ground cloves.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2 baking sheets or line with parchment paper; set aside.

Melt butter in a small pan over medium heat. Remove from heat and stir in sugar until well combined; then stir in vanilla. Add egg and beat until mixture is smooth. In a small bowl, stir together flour and cloves; gradually add to butter mixture, blending thoroughly.

Drop dough by level teaspoonfuls onto prepared baking sheets, spacing cookies 2 1/2 - 3 inches apart. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 12-14 minutes or until edges are golden brown and puffy tops start to crinkle and collapse. Immediately transfer cookies to wire racks to cool.

Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

"Sunset Cookies", Lane Publishing Co., Menlo Park, CA, 1985.

Cookies Rule!!!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Cookie Recipe #330 - Anise Cookies


If you like black licorice, you will enjoy these cookies. They are more like a sugar cookie with an anise aftertaste. You will need to plan ahead, because the anise seeds and sugar need to sit together for 24 hours.

Ingredients: 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 2 teaspoons anise seeds, 1 cup butter or margarine, softened, 1 egg, 2 tablespoons brandy OR 1 tablespoon EACH lemon juice and water, 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon.

Instructions: Combine sugar and anise seeds; cover tightly and let stand for 24 hours. Use the sugar as is or sift out seeds and discard for a subtler flavor.

In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and 1/2 cup of the anise sugar until creamy. Beat in egg and brandy (or lemon juice and water). In another bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon; gradually add to butter mixture, blending thoroughly. Gather dough into a ball, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm (about 1 hour) or for up to 3 days.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets or line with parchment paper; set aside. Roll out dough ona lightly floured surface to a thickness of 1/8 inch. Cut out with desired cookie cutters and place 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheets. Using remaining anise sugar, sprinkle liberally over cookies.

Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for about 12 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Makes about 5 dozen.

"Sunset Cookies", Lane Publishing Co., Menlo Park, CA, 1985.

Cookies Rule!!!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cookie Recipe #329 - Lemon Carrot Cookies


These soft lemon-tasting cookies with the added natural sweetness of carrots gives your daily vitamin intake a boost.

Ingredients: 1 cup butter or margarine, softened, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon lemon extract, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1 egg, 1 cup finely shredded carrots (about 2 medium-size), 1 cup each all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour (or 2 cups all-purpose), 2 teaspoons baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, 1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts (optional).

Instructions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease 2 cookie sheets or line with parchment paper; set aside.

In large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar until creamy; beat in lemon extract, vanilla, and egg. Stir in carrots, mixing well. In another bowl, stir together flours, baking powder, salt, and baking soda; gradually add to butter mixture, blending thoroughly. Mix in walnuts, if using.

Drop dough by level tablespoonfuls onto prepared cookie sheets, spacing cookies about 2 inches apart. Bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 12 minutes or until edges are browned. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

Makes 5-6 dozen cookies.

"Sunset Cookies", Lane Publishing Co., Menlo Park, CA, 1985.

Cookies Rule!!!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Cookie Recipe #328 - Cranberry Nut Cups


Today is the cranberry recipes finale, but what a way to end. The sweet goodness of cranberries alongside the crunchy chopped walnuts fills the cream cheese pastry cup to capacity. Pop the whole thing in your mouth at once to continue the Thanksgiving cranberry craving.

Ingredients: 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature, 3 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature, 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1 egg, 3/4 cup packed brown sugar, 1 tablespoon butter, melted, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cranberries, 3 tablespoons chopped walnuts.

Instructions: In a medium bowl, stir together butter and cream cheese. Mix in flour until well blended. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour, or until easy to handle.

Meanwhile make filling: In a medium bowl, whisk together egg, brown sugar, melted butter, and vanilla. Add in cranberries and walnuts, mixing well.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Roll dough into 24 1-inch balls. Place balls in 2 ungreased 12-cup mini pans. With finger or back of a small spoon press dough up sides to form a cup. Distribute cranberry/nut filling evenly in all 24 cups.

Bake in preheated 325 degree oven 25-30 minutes, or until edges of cups are light brown. Allow to cool 2 minutes in pan before gently removing and transferring to wire racks with a knife or small spatula. Cool completely.

Makes 24 mini nut cups.

Submitted by Debirae on www.eons.com, 2010.

Cookies Rule!!!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Cookie Recipe #327 - Banana Bran Squares


Today's recipe bears some healthy items such as wheat bran, yogurt, and banana. Topping the bars with a thin layer of hazelnut spread disguises the healthiness with a bit of sinful chocolate. Happy Thanksgiving to all!!

Ingredients: 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1 cup wheat bran, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 cup butter, softened, 1/2 cup yogurt (I used French Vanilla), 1 cup mashed banana, 1/4 cup milk, hazelnut spread (such as Nutella), banana slices.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch square cake pan; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, mix together dry ingredients. Add in butter with fingers to make a lumpy mixture. In another bowl, combine yogurt, mashed banana, and milk. Blend into first mixture.

Spread batter into prepared pan. Bake for about 40 minutes. Let cool slightly, then top with a thin layer of hazelnut spread. Cut into squares and garnish with slices of banana just before serving.

Makes 3 dozen squares.

"The Ultimate Cookie Book", Tormont Publications Inc., Montreal, Canada, 1997.

Cookies Rule!!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Cookie Recipe #326 - Date and Orange Squares


The sweet mixture of dates and oranges lies nestled in between a crumby outer layer of butter, flour, sugar and oatmeal.

Ingredients: 1/2 cup butter, softened, 1 1/2 cups brown sugar, 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 1/4 cups oatmeal, 1 pound pitted dates, cut into pieces, 1 chopped orange, 1 1/2 cups water.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a square 8 or 9-inch baking pan. In a large bowl, cream butter with 1 cup of the brown sugar. In a separate bowl, sift flour with salt and baking powder. Add oatmeal and mix well. Combine dry ingredients with creamed mixture and set aside.

Place dates, orange, water and remaining brown sugar in saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook until thick, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. (I then pureed the mixture because I like a smoother mixture, not chunky.)

Pack 2/3 of the oat mixture into prepared cake pan (it will be crumby). Spread date mixture evenly over top. Cover with remaining oat mixture and press lightly.

Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 25 minutes. Allow to cool on wire rack before cutting into squares.

Makes about 20 squares.

"The Ultimate Cookie Book", Tormont Publications Inc., Montreal, Canada, 1997.

Cookies Rule!!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Cookie Recipe #325 - Italian Crumb Cookie


Today's cookie comes from Italy; it begins as a heap of buttery crumbs laid out in a pan, baked, cooled, allowed to sit for a day, then broke into numerous pieces and served with slices of fruit. It would be good with ice cream, also.

Ingredients: 1 cup almonds, ground, 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour, 1 cup granulated sugar, pinch of salt, 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel, 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons firm butter, cut into pieces, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 tablespoon brandy or water.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees; grease a 9x13-inch pan or 12-inch pizza pan. In a mixing bowl, stir together almonds, flour, sugar, salt, and lemon peel. With a pastry blender or 2 knives (or clean fingers), cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle with lemon juice and brandy (or water) and mix lightly with a fork until blended. Mixture should be crumbly.

Spread mixture in prepared pan; do not press into pan. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 50-60 minutes or until browned. Let cool completely in pan on a wire rack.

When cookie is cooled, wrap well in plastic wrap(either in or out of pan) and let stand for at least a day. To serve, break into chunks. Store airtight.

Makes 2-3 dozen pieces.

"Sunset Cookies", Lane Publishing Co., Menlo Park, CA, 1985.

Cookies Rule!!!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Cookie Recipe #324 - Sacher Cookies


Sacher Torte is an Austrian apricot-filled chocolate cake; these are the cookie version of the torte. A coating of apricot jam hugs a coffee-flavored, crisp, chocolate cookie and is completed with a dollop of vanilla-infused whipping cream over which minute dots of cocoa powder are sprinkled.

Ingredients: 2 squares unsweetened baking chocolate, 1/3 cup vegetable shortening, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1 egg, 1 tablespoon coffee crystals, 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 cup apricot jam, 1 1/2 cups whipping cream, 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract, cocoa powder for sprinkling.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets or line with parchment paper; set aside.

Melt chocolate in microwave until smooth when stirred; allow to cool.

In a large mixing bowl, cream shortening with sugar; blend in egg, coffee, then melted chocolate. Gradually mix in flour until thoroughly incorporated.

Turn dough out on well-floured surface and roll out 1/4-inch thick. Cut out circles, about 2 inches in diameter. Place on prepared pans about an inch apart. Bake 8-10 minutes until firm. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool completely.

When ready to serve, spread apricot jam on each cookie. Whip cream with vanilla until doubled in volume; spoon a dollop of whipped cream on top of the jam and sprinkle with cocoa.

Makes about 3 dozen.

"The Ultimate Cookie Book", Tormont Publications Inc., Montreal, Canada, 1997.

Cookies Rule!!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Cookie Recipe #323 - Cranberry Pockets


A sweet cranberry filling is nestled in the middle of a soft, slightly citrusy cookie forming a pocket. Port wine is used, but you may substitute cranberry-apple drink in both the filling and the glaze.

Ingredients: 1/2 cup butter, softened, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, dash of salt, 1/2 cup dairy sour cream, 1 egg, 2 teaspoons finely shredded orange peel, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour. Cranberry-Port filling: 3/4 cup dried cranberries, 1/3 cup port wine, 2 tablespoons orange juice, 3 tablespoons granulated sugar. Port glaze: 1 cup sifted powdered sugar, 3-4 tablespoons port wine, red food coloring (if desired). Powdered Sugar Icing: 1 cup sifted powdered sugar, 1/4 teaspoon vanilla, 3-4 teaspoons milk.

Instructions: In large mixing bowl beat butter for 30 seconds. Beat in sugar, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, and salt. Add in sour cream, egg, orange peel, and vanilla until well mixed. Stir in flour and beat until thoroughly incorporated. Divide dough in half. Cover; chill about 2 hours or until easy to handle.

Meanwhile, prepare Cranberry-Port Filling as follows: Combine cranberries, port wine, and orange juice. Bring just to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, 5-10 minutes or until most of liquid is absorbed, stirring occasionally. Stir in granulated sugar. Cool slightly. Transfer to a food processor and process until cranberries are finely chopped. Cool completely.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On a floured surface, roll each dough half until 1/8 inch thick. Cut into 3-inch rounds. Place 1/2 inch apart on ungreased baking sheets. Spoon 1/2 teaspoon Cranberry-Port filling onto center of each. Fold in half; seal.

Bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 7-8 minutes or until edges are firm and bottoms are very lightly browned. Transfer to wire racks and let cool.

Make Port Glaze: Combine powdered sugar and enough port wine to make glaze of drizzling consistency. If desired, tint with a small amount of red food coloring. Drizzle over each cooled cookie in desired pattern.

Make Powdered Sugar Icing: Combine powdered sugar, vanilla, and enough milk to make of drizzling consistency. Drizzle over the port glaze in desired pattern.
Allow glazes to harden.

Makes about 42 cookies.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Cookie Recipe #322 - Pumpkin-Pecan Cookies


Today's recipe completes the bonanza of pumpkin recipes. This is a soft cookie loaded with plenty of toasted pecans. The brown butter frosting compliments the cookie, although you could leave them plain.

Ingredients: 2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice, 1 cup butter, softened, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 egg, 1 cup canned pumpkin, 1 cup chopped pecans, toasted. Frosting: 6 tablespoons butter, 1/3 cup packed brown sugar, 2 cups sifted powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla.

Instructions: Toast pecans on a baking sheet in a preheated 375 degree oven for about 10 minutes or until fragrant; do not overbrown. Allow to cool slightly before chopping; set aside. Leave oven at 375 degrees while mixing up cookies.

In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and allspice; set flour mixture aside.

In a large mixing bowl beat butter for 30 seconds. Add sugar and beat until combined. Add in egg and beat well. Stir pumpkin and flour mixture into egg mixture until thoroughly incorporated. Stir in pecans.

Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls about 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool completely.

Make frosting: In a medium heavy saucepan heat and stir the 6 tablespoons butter and brown sugar over medium heat until butter melts; remove from heat. Stir in sifted powdered sugar and vanilla. Stir in enough hot water (2-3 teaspoons) to make a smooth, spreadable frosting. Immediately frost cookies. (If frosting becomes grainy, add a few more drops of hot water and stir until smooth.)

Frost cookies with a generous amount of icing and allow to dry.

Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Cookie Recipe #321 - Mocha Cutouts


What better way to get your get-up-and-go than with a mocha-flavored leaf, acorn, or turkey? As if the chocolate and coffee in the cookie itself isn't enough, dip those little critters in some melted chocolate (not for the weak at heart!)

Ingredients: 1/2 cup butter, softened, 1/2 cup packed brown sugar, 2 teaspoons instant espresso coffee powder (or instant coffee), 2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder, dash of salt, 1 egg yolk, 1 tablespoon coffee liqueur (or strong brewed coffee) 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips, 1 tablespoon shortening.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium mixing bowl, beat butter for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar, coffee powder, cocoa, and salt, mixing well. Beat in egg yolk and coffee liqueur until combined. Beat in flour until thoroughly incorporated. Divide dough in half. If necessary, cover and chill dough until easy to handle.

On a lightly floured surface, roll half of the dough at a time until 1/4 inch thick. Using floured 2 1/2-3-inch cookie cutters, cut dough into desired shapes. Place 1 inch apart on ungreased baking sheets.

Bake in preheated 350 degree oven about 12 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned. Cool on baking sheet for 1 minute before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

In a small heavy saucepan melt chocolate chips with shortening over low heat, stirring constantly (or in microwave). Dip a part of each cookie into melted chocolate and place on waxed paper-lined sheets. Let stand until set or pop into the refrigerator to speed up the setting process.

Makes about 2-3 dozen cookies.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Cookie Recipe #320 - Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars


This could be the new addition to your Thanksgiving Feast. A mildly spicy pumpkin swirled along with the cream cheese mixture lying atop a gingersnap base leaves you wanting more.

Ingredients: 2 cups finely crushed gingersnaps (about 30 cookies), 1/4 cup butter, melted, 1/3 cup canned pumpkin, 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, 3 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla, 3 eggs.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease a 13x9x2-inch baking pan; set aside. In a small bowl combine gingersnaps and melted butter. Press mixture evenly into bottom of the prepared pan. Bake about 10 minutes or until crust is firm; cool.

Meanwhile, for pumpkin batter, in a medium bowl stir together pumpkin, flour, and pumpkin pie spice; set aside.

For cream cheese batter, in a large mixing bowl beat cream cheese until smooth. Add sugar and vanilla, beating until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition on low speed just until combined. Stir one-third of the cream cheese batter (about 1 1/2 cups) into the pumpkin batter until smooth. Pour remaining cream cheese batter over crust, spreading evenly. Place large spoonfuls of pumpkin batter randomly over cream cheese batter. Using the tip of a table knife or a thin metal spatula, gently swirl the two batters together.

Bake for 25-30 minutes more or until center is just set. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Cover and chill for 4 to 24 hours before cutting into squares or bars.

Cover and store in refrigerator up to 3 days.

Makes 24 bars.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Cookie Recipe #319 - Sweet and Salty Cookies


This is a new take on an ever-popular cookie-the chocolate chip cookie. The addition of pretzels and potato chips gives it the saltiness along with a crunch.

Ingredients: 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon salt (optional), 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 3/4 cup packed brown sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 2 large eggs, 2 cups (12-ounce package)semi-sweet chocolate chips, 2 cups coarsely broken rippled potato chips, 1 cup small pretzel twists, broken into 1/2-inch pieces, 1/2 cup unsalted peanuts (optional).

Instructions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla extract in large mixing bowl until creamy.

Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate chips, potato chips, pretzel pieces, and peanuts, if using. Drop by rounded tablesponfuls onto ungreased baking sheets.

Bake 9-11 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool.

Makes 4-5 dozen cookies.

"Woman's Day magazine", November 1, 2010, insert by Nestle, Societe des Produits Nestle S.A., Vevey, Switzerland.

Cookies Rule!!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Cookie Recipe #318 - Cranberry Oat Squares


Since cranberries are abundant in the stores this time of year, it's a good time to make today's recipe. A filling of cranberries and raisins nestles between a bottom and top layer of a sweet oatmeal mixture.

Ingredients: 12 ounces cranberries, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup raisins, 1 tablespoon cornstarch, 2 tablespoons cold water, 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1 cup cold butter, 1 cup brown sugar, 2 cups oatmeal flakes, pinch of salt.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium saucepan, cook cranberries with granulated sugar until soft, about 5 minutes. Puree with a potato masher and cook 10-15 minutes. Add raisins and continue cooking 2 minutes. Dissolve cornstarch in cold water and add to puree; cook until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and cover with plastic wrap; let cool.

Meanwhile, sift together flour, baking soda, and salt. Cut butter into dry ingredients and mix (with fingers, or you could use a pastry blender, but fingers are much more fun!) to make a lumpy batter. Mix in brown sugar and oatmeal flakes (again with fingers).

Spread half of batter into a 9 inch square cake pan evenly, pressing down. Cover evenly with cranberry puree, and then with remaining oat batter.

Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes and let cool slightly before cutting into squares.

Makes 9 squares.

"The Ultimate Cookie Book", Tormont Publications Inc., Montreal, Canada, 1997.

Cookies Rule!!!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Cookie Recipe #317 - Cheeseburger Cookies


If you leave these sitting on the counter after you make them, any one passing by them will believe they're a mini cheeseburger. Biting into one will be a sweet surprise. Fairly simple to make, so allow the kids to help in the production-they will love them.

Ingredients: 2 12-ounce boxes Nilla wafers, 1 egg white, 1/4 cup sesame seeds, 4-5 tablespoons milk, 1/2 teaspoon almond extract, 4 cups confectioners' sugar, yellow food coloring, red food coloring, 1 cup coconut, green food coloring, 2 10-ounce packages grasshopper chocolate-covered cookies.

Instructions: Place wafers on 2 trays-one should have all the wafers facing up (round side up) and the other should have all the wafers facing down. Each tray should have the same number of wafers, 35-40.

Brush the wafers facing up with a little egg white, then sprinkle with sesame seeds on top.

To make the frosting (cheese): stir 4 tablespoons of milk and the almond extract into the confectioners' sugar. Add more milk, if necessary. Add yellow and red food coloring until you get the color of American cheese.

To color the coconut (lettuce): place the coconut in a lidded jar and add green food coloring. Shake until lettuce-colored.

To assemble: The frosting (cheese) is the glue. Frost a facing-down cookie. Add a grasshopper cookie. Repeat for all wafers. Then put frosting on top of the grasshopper cookies and dip into the green coconut. Repeat for entire tray. Then frost the flat side of the sesame seed-topped cookies and place on top of the coconut (lettuce). You have in your hand a mini cookie cheeseburger.

Makes 35-40 cookies.

"The Christmas Cookie Club", by Ann Pearlman, Atria Books, Simon & Schuster, Inc., NY, 2009.

Cookies Rule!!!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Cookie Recipe #316 - Simple Fudge Tarts


"Simple" is the key word of today's recipe-only 3 ingredients. How simpler could they be?

Ingredients: 1/2 of an 18-ounce roll refrigerated peanut butter cookie dough*, 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate pieces, 1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray twenty-four mini-muffin cups with nonstick spray; set aside.

Cut cookie dough into 6 equal pieces. Cut each piece into 4 equal slices. Press each slice of dough evenly into bottom and up sides of a prepared muffin cup.

Bake in preheated 350 degree oven about 9 minutes or until edges are lightly browned and dough is slightly firm but not set. Remove from oven. Gently press a shallow indentation in each tart shell with the back of a round 1/2-teaspoon measuring spoon.

Bake for 2 more minutes or until edges of tart shells are firm and light golden brown. Let tart shells cool in cups on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Carefully remove tart shells from cups. Cool completely on wire racks.

Make filling: in a small saucepan, combine chocolate pieces and sweetened condensed milk. Cook and stir over medium heat until chocolate melts. Spoon a generous teaspoon of filling into each cooled tart shell. Let stand until filling is set.

*I used a dry package of peanut butter cookie mix: mix as instructed on package, cover and chill in refrigerator at least an hour for easier handling, then proceed to roll dough into balls to place in prepared mini-muffin pans.

Makes 2 dozen tarts.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Cookie Recipe #315 - Candy Bar Brownies


There are no candy bars in this bar cookie, but the combination of chocolate, peanut butter, and peanuts makes it taste like one.

Ingredients: 1 1/4 cups finely crushed graham cracker crumbs (about 18 crackers), 1 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/4 cup finely chopped dry-roasted peanuts, 1/2 cup butter, melted, 1/2 cup butter, 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped, 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 2/3 cup all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup chopped peanuts. Frosting: 1/4 cup butter, softened, 2 tablespoons peanut butter (I used chunky), 2 cups sifted powdered sugar, 2-3 tablespoons milk, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1/4 cup honey-roasted peanuts or regular peanuts for sprinkling on top.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine graham crackers, 1/4 cup of the sugar, and the 1/4 cup finely chopped peanuts. Stir in the 1/2 cup melted butter. Press mixture evenly into bottom of an ungreased 11x7x1 1/2-inch baking pan. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 5 minutes; cool while making the filling as follows:

In a large heavy saucepan melt 1/2 cup butter and the chocolate over low heat, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Stir in the remaining 1 cup sugar, the eggs, and vanilla. Stir just until combined. Stir in flour and the 1/2 cup chopped peanuts. Spread evenly over crust.

Bake for 20 minutes more. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.

Make frosting: In a small mixing bowl beat the 1/4 cup softened butter with peanut butter for 30 seconds. Gradually add 1 cup of the sifted powdered sugar, beating well. Add in 1 tablespoon milk and the vanilla. Gradually beat in additional 1 cup of sifted powdered sugar and enough milk to make of spreading consistency.

Spread frosting over completely cooled brownies and top with peanuts. Cut into squares and serve.

Makes 24-48 brownies, depending on size of squares.

"Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Cookies", Meredith Corporation, Des Moines, IA, 2003.

Cookies Rule!!!