Thursday, December 23, 2010

Cookies!!! Part Two

Time for Cookies Part 2 -- Monday & Tuesday baking adventures. SP was back at work, so I was pretty much on my own, but I got a lot of clean up help from my mom. That's the best kind of help - someone to clean up your flour and dough mess! Since I was on my own, I didn't take many photos. In fact, this year I pretty much just photographed the finished product. Since we've made most of these cookies before, I figured I'd just link to my previous posts and if the cookie is a new addition to our baking, I linked to the online recipe.

Christmas Cookies 6-10:


Before he left for work Monday morning, SP whipped up the pizzelle batter and put it in the refrigerator. When I finally got it out around 10 am, it was a very thick batter. It quickly became apparent that I was having troubles judging how much batter to put in the molds. The first dozen cookies came out on the tiny/uneven side:Eventually, I figured it all out and the spoonfuls of batter were large enough to squish out and fill the entire mold when I pressed the lid down. These are regular pizzelles, with vanilla & anise extracts. We make pizzelles frequently, and last year's holiday pizzelle post can be found here.

Nut Cups
This is another frequently requested cookie (my mom and my friend, L, love these) so they are on the cookie list every year. This year, instead of walnuts, we used pecans. Also, I used paper liners instead of just hoping they'd easily slide out of the non-stick mini muffin pan. This year, I managed to boil over only about 3-4 of these cups. That's much better than last year when I think I had caramelized nut goo all over the mini muffin pan!!!

Triple Ginger CookiesThese cookies are a new, repeat addition to the baking list. We made them last year for the first time - the recipe was in Bon Appetit last December - and SP & I loved these cookies.As far as we are concerned, these are a 'must make' cookie. Three kinds of ginger! SP grated the fresh ginger and chopped the crystallized ginger for me in the morning before heading out to work. There's a lot of ingredients to measure, but it's worth it. Molasses, brown sugar, dark brown sugar, cinnamon, cloves, ground ginger. The scoops of dough are rolled in sugar before baking. I got about 45 cookies from this recipe. They are just as tasty as last year - although be warned that the soft cookie right after baking slowly gives way to a harder cookie, I suppose like a ginger snap, but they aren't super hard. And I am very happy to report that my dad loves these cookies. I'm so glad he's really enjoying them since we messed up his Candy Cane Cookies!

Raspberry Shortbread Bars
This cookie makes an appearance every year, too. My sister-in-law, P3, is a big fan of these. One year, she ate them for breakfast!

Officially, they are Raspberry Shortbread Bars, but any kind of preserves can be used. This year, we used strawberry preserves. Last year, we used cherry preserves. The 'noteworthy' thing about these cookies is that the dough is divided into 2 logs, chilled, and then the dough is grated into the glass baking dish. Mom did the grating this year. She did a mighty fine job. These are quite tasty and near the top of our 'more favorite' list.As usual, they required about 15-20 minutes longer in the oven than the 35 minutes the recipe calls for.

Dried Cherry & Almond Biscotti
Dried Cherry & Almond Biscotti is a new addition to our Christmas Cookie baking list. Like the Citrus Shortbread, I saw this recipe while reading recipes in the Food Network Christmas Cookie emails. We like biscotti. We wanted to make a biscotti for Christmas. We like cherries. We have a bag of dried cherries. We decided to make these.Biscotti are fairly easy to make. The dough can be sticky and difficult to shape into logs. And I always fret about if my logs are too skinny or not. Here's a photo of the baked logs on the left and then the slices ready for their second bake on the right:
Before baking, the logs are brushed with an egg white wash and sprinkled with turbinado sugar. At this point, I was getting tired and I sort of sprinkled everything around me with the sugar. Oops. We considered leaving off the sugar because we didn't want to buy a whole box of the sugar for just 2 tablespoons, but I am glad we did because the sugar topping really adds to the cherry-almond-lemon flavor.At first my parents were giving me a hard time about making biscotti. They don't like it. It's too hard. Blah blah. But after we baked them and it was sample time, they changed their minds, commenting on how tasty these are and how they weren't too crispy hard. These are a new favorite. I have a feeling they'll be showing up every year!

1 comment:

  1. Gah, I love nut cups. Love them to death. Will eat an entire platter if it's placed before me. Love love love them.

    Sorry, still coming down from an all-weekend cookie high...