Tag Archives: cookies

Christmas Cookies

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Last Saturday a very good friend of mine came over and we made cookies ALL day.  We both wanted to get a jump on the holiday baking by making cookies and dough for the freezer.  Both forms will last roughly 3-4 weeks in the freezer as long as you double wrap them they will taste just like you made them fresh that day.

We made 5 different kinds and a double batch of each.  Some may not be “holiday” cookies per say but they will definitely help with having a quick dessert when friends and family stop over.

We made Chocolate Chip, Snicker Doodles, Peanut Butter, Sugar and Gingerbread men.  We made all the gingerbread men so we will just need to take them out of the freezer and decorate with frosting or leave as is, they are delicious.  The peanut butter dough will be made into thumbprints with kisses in the middle – I can’t wait for that I LOVE peanut butter. The sugar cookie dough we can thaw a little roll out and cut to whatever shapes we want.  I love decorating sugar cookies, I love making different colored frosting for them.  I am not a great cookie decorator but they’re yummy.

Sugar Cookie Dough Recipe – 350’ approximately 12-15 minutes

2 Cups all-purpose flour

½ Teaspoon Baking Powder

¼ Teaspoon salt

2 Sticks unsalted butter softened but still cool

1 Cup sugar

1 Tablespoon brown sugar

1 Large egg

1 ½ Teaspoon vanilla extract

Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl set aside.

Using a mixer (or by hand) cream the butter, with both sugars at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Scrape down the sides, add egg and vanilla, beat till combined.  Immediate use, take dough and split it in half, make into a disc shape and wrap in plastic; place in the fridge for about 30 minutes at the very least.  If you are rolling and cutting, work with 1 disc at a time, roll onto a lightly floured surface; roll to about ¼ inch thickness and choose your cutting tool(s) bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes (every oven is different) you want them done through but not too browned. Let them set on the sheet for 3 minutes than transfer to a wire rack.  Once cooled you can decorate as you wish

Who doesn’t love fresh out of the oven cookies? We are kind of cookie snobs in a way that we like fresh that day cookies, so I would cook a batch and roll up the remainder of the batter into a log, double wrap it and place it in the freezer for a later date.  I don’t know about your families but my guys have a hard time keeping their paws off both, cookies and dough.  When said later date came, no dough AUGH!!!!

I have always made chocolate chip cookies but was always searching for an amazing tasting and looking cookie.  My husband and I challenged each other to a chocolate chip cookie bakeoff.  I think we made 3 or 4 batches of cookies before I was named champion!!!!  It amazes me how different memories are for people.  He swears he was the winner.  Too bad for him that when we did this I posted it on FB so I could SHOW him who truly won!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe – 325’ approximately 15-18 minutes

2 Cups all-purpose flour + 2 Tablespoons

½ Teaspoon Baking Soda

½ Teaspoon Salt

6 Tablespoons unsalted butter

4 Tablespoons Margarine (both melted together and cooled until warm)

1 Cup packed Brown Sugar

½ Cup sugar

1 Large Egg plus 1 Large Egg Yolk

2 Teaspoons Vanilla

2 Handfuls of Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips (more or less – whatever you like)

Whisk together Flour, Baking Soda, and Salt in a medium bowl and set aside

Using a mixer (or by hand) cream the butter and sugars until thoroughly blended, add egg, yolk and vanilla until combined.  Add dry ingredients and beat on low just to combine.  Stir in chips to taste.

Make about 18 large cookies or you can make them into smaller size

For the large cookies there is a cool trick to make them look like the ones you can buy in certain shops. Take about a ¼ cup of dough and roll into a ball. Take the ball and break it in half, rotate the halves 90 degrees, put the dough back together with the jagged edges facing up and place on a greased cookie sheet.  Bake in a 325’ oven for 15-18 minutes. Bake until they are light golden brown. For chewy cookies, do not over bake. Cool the cookies on the sheet and remove once cooled.

Fall Fare

Like most people; I can only assume; when the weather starts to cool off the urge to start up the oven definitely takes over.  It not only helps take the chill out of the house and makes the house smell yummy!  It saves you from starting the furnace sooner than you want to.  

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Photo above taken by: Steve Fernandes – I LOVE this photo!!!

Before we built the home we live in today, we lived in a much smaller home where the only form of heat we used was a wood stove.  That makes for VERY chilly mornings and even chillier evenings when we got home from work; at least until you got the stove going.  I think that is where my love of cooking started especially when the air changes. I would cook anything that would keep the oven going for a few hours; just to get the house as warm as I wanted.  Sometimes it would get so hot we always ended up opening a window.  Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner was definitely worth 2 or 3 windows AND the front door. I am not complaining I really liked my little home. 

Since living in New England my entire life we have always had a wood stove; fireplaces are pretty but very inefficient.  When we started the new house I was MOST concerned we wouldn’t be having a wood stove or fireplace.  What no wood to cut, split, stack and clean up after. I did have many sleepless nights and brought up the subject quite often.  Well I am converted now, the whole house is radiant floor heat by propane and I would NEVER go back willingly to wood.  There are no cold spots in the house, no cold floors, no cold anything; the whole house is the same temperature.  We do keep the bedrooms colder than anywhere else and the ceramic tile in the bathrooms are AWESOME!!!  But my love for cooking was born out of wanting to be warm!   

Today being the first full day of Fall and boy can I tell; Not only are the leaves turning and dropping; I swear the color of the trees in the swamp just up the road from my house are almost at peak. I have already cooked a Roaster Chicken, a Ribeye Roast, made chicken stock for the freezer, took all the tomatoes that I haven’t done anything with from the garden and braised some Chicken thighs with them plus even more just this week.  I haven’t done anymore baking since all the zucchini & banana bread that I made a couple of weeks ago. BUT I did just make a Sam’s Club run today and bought some flour and sugar.  I must also take a trip to the local orchard up on Norway Hill to pick some yummy macintosh apples.  I can almost smell the apple pie and crisp cooking.

Tonight we are having Boneless Center Cut Pork Chops with apples for dinner and I might just have to make some chocolate chip cookies for dessert.  A couple of years ago my husband and I had a “who can make the Best Chocolate Chip Cookie challenge”.  Not a great thing to do if you are watching your weight.  It probably took us a month of both of us making cookies every week; it might have been even longer, I honestly can’t remember.  While his cookies LOOKED better than mine, I won the taste portion – Though I can’t remember how long it took us I do remember who won; funny thing is he seems to think he won.

Bad picture but awesome cookie!

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Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies – How I make them!!!

2 Cups flour plus 2 Tbs All Purpose flour

½ Tsp Baking Soda

½ Tsp Salt

5 Tbs unsalted butter – room temperature

5 Tbs Margarine – room temperature

1 Cup brown sugar

½ C Sugar

1 large egg Plus 1 egg yolk

2 Tsp Vanilla

1 Cup more or less semisweet chocolate chips

 These make about 18 large cookies – Bake at 325’ for about 15 to 18 minutes

Large cookies – take about ¼ cup of the dough into a ball, split the ball in half and take the jagged edges of the dough and place them side by side sticking them together with the jagged edges facing up; place on either a parchment covered cookie sheet or spray the cookie sheet with cooking spray.  Do not overcook but cool them on the sheet, once cooked remove using a metal spatula.  

Rich watching his cookies so they come out perfect!

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