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!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Cookie Recipe #120 - Mini Strawberry Pinwheels

Cirlces of strawberry jam wrapped up in a soft cheesy, lemony cookie (almost pastry-like) is a good description of today's cookie.

Ingredients: 1/2 cup butter, softened, 4 ounces cream cheese, softened, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, 1 tablespoon chopped lemon zest, 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1 cup strawberry or raspberry jam.

Instructions: In a large bowl, cream butter and cream cheese with sugar. Add egg, lemon juice and lemon zest; continue beating until light and fluffy. Sift flour and baking soda together and gradually add to creamed mixture. Cover and chill for at least an hour.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees; line baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

Divide dough in three; work with one portion at a time, refrigerating unworked portions. On a floured surface, roll into a rectangle, 9x10 inches and 1/8 inch thick. Trim edges. Brush with 1/3 of jam and roll up, starting with long end. Repeat with remaining portions of dough and jam.

Cut rolls into slices about 1/2 inch thick with knife dipped in flour and wiping clean after each cut. Place on prepared baking sheets about 1 1/2" apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until firm and just slightly browned. Allow to cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes before transferring to cooling racks.

If desired, make a simple glaze of 1 cup confectioners' sugar and 2 teaspoons milk (add more as needed). Stir until smooth and drizzle small amounts on each cookie.

With or without glaze, these a good treat.

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

Cookies Rule!!!

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