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Christmas Cookies


Elizabeth_11
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Rehovot, I found it on a website which published updated gingerbread recipes adapted from very old time recipes (which used treacle). I copied and pasted it on my Word program and forgot to make a note where I got it.

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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Patrick...I am in awe on how your caramels turned out and how you wrapped them..did you roll them?

Thanks!

Yes they are rolled in a ~4 inch square of wax paper, twist the ends and give them a little push into the end of the caramel to square the end off and secure the paper a bit.

Each piece is about 1 1/2 x 3/4 inches cut out of a approximately 3/4 inch thick slab of caramel.

I just packed my traveling package this morning. I have a USPS box with two square foil pans of baklava, a square foil pan of fudge and all of my caramels. It will be making the trip to Minneapolis for the holiday with my in-laws. That little box weighs a ton!

Patrick Sikes

www.MyChocolateJournal.com

A new chocolate review community

PS I Love You Fine Chocolates

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Making cookies is cathartic, isn't it?  :smile:

:smile: Yes!

I'm making Christmas cookies for the first time; as was mentioned in an article in yesterday's NY Times, they chose me! So far I've made different icebox cookies (coffee, chocolate, cream cheese, pistachio/cranberry) so that I can bake them just shortly before giving them out. Over the weekend I plan to make the others, not exactly sure which ones yet but, my goodness, there are SO MANY recipes! How do you choose? I have printed out well over 100 recipes, and I want to make all of them! The other problem: how do you not eat the cookies as quickly as you take them out of the oven? :laugh: Really, I'm a little worried about this. I can be like the proverbial kid in the candy shop. But anyway, yes, this really is cathartic. :smile: I can't wait to give them out.

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I took the day off from work to make cookies with my daughter and a friend. So far, we've made:

Ling's Lime Meltaways

Gourmet Pistachio-Cranberry Icebox Cookies

CI Gingerbread Cookies

Congo Bars

Dorrie Greenspan's Peanuttiest Blondies

We also made "Marilyn's Toffee". I don't know who Marilyn is, but this recipe has been fawned over on the CI bulletin board for years and I finally made it for the first time. I'm not a good baker or candy maker, and frankly I don't even have much of a sweet tooth, but this was one of the best things I've ever tasted! And it was fast and easy, too. The recipe is here: Marilyn's English Toffee

Edited by kbjesq (log)
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I currently have a glut of gifted primo pecan halves.

Living alone, I don't do Christmas giveaway baking. At least not much.

But perhaps I should.

Since time is short, and gifts already purchased, wouldn't an unexpected after Christmas treat be even better?

Sweet or savory. Anyone have ideas for something that will keep a bit, or travel well? Nevermind, all giftees would be locals anyway.

Since these pecans are the best of the best, I'm thinking simple is better. Let the pecans shine?

But I want kick-your-butt special. Any ideas?

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Anyone have ideas for something that will keep a  bit, or travel well?  Nevermind, all giftees would be locals anyway.

Since these pecans are the best of the best, I'm thinking simple is better. Let the pecans shine?

But I want kick-your-butt special. Any ideas?

Hie thyself to the library and check out Maida Heatter's "Brand New Book of Great Cookies" and make some Pecan Passion Bars, and up the pecans to 3 cups iinstead of 2 cups (result of not grabbing my reading glasses before I baked them. These are a turtles in a bar, and better than almost any pecan pie you'll ever have. Think Pecan Crack.

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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Not cookies, but....

You can make salt-glazed pecans, which is actually a very simple process and you can even add a little sweetening if you wish.

Preheat your oven to 225 degrees F., no hotter.

Place a colander in the sink.

In a wide, shallow pan or skillet add water until it is an inch deep.

Add kosher salt as the water heats to boiling, you want a super-saturated solution so add salt and stir until it will no longer dissolve and you can see a few grains on the bottom of the pan.

If you want a bit of sweetness, stir in 2 tablespoons of sugar.

Add a cup of pecan halves to the boiling water, stir and let the water return to a boil - should be no more than 45 seconds.

Immediately remove the pan from the stove and pour the pecans into the colander.

Drain, tossing then in the colander and spread on a sheet pan and quickly place in the oven.

Set your timer for 30 minutes.

Stir once about half-way through the roasting time.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

Store airtight - they will keep for at least 3 months.

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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This year I made 11 varieties of cookies:

Cocoa rum balls

Pecan tassies

Rainbow cookies

Gingerbread boys and girls

Chocolate cherry spritz

Lemon spritz (shaped like Christmas trees)

Italian Fig Cookies

Peanut Blossoms

Chocolate florentine sandwiches

Raspberry jam thumbprints

Cranberry pistaschio biscotti (with one end dipped in white chocolate)

I packed them up in personalized window boxes I had printed up.  Then I gave them out as party favors (along with personalized packets of hot cocoa mix) to my Christmas party guests this past weekend.  They were well received. 

Next year I'm looking forward to trying a few new favorites, such as Ling's chocolate toffee cookies.

Since I ran out of a few varieties, I made some more Lemon spritz, chocolate florentine sandwiches, peanut blossoms (my favorite this year) and rainbows. I also added a spritz butter cookie sandwiched with preserves, one end dipped in chocolate. I currently have the dough for Ling's Chocolate Toffee cookies chilling in the fridge too. Once my oven is free (I have a ham in there right now), I'll bake those.

I've just been on a cookie baking spurt lately. :laugh: And I'm making two sweet potato cheesecakes - one I'll give to my sister and one I'll keep.

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I added the goddess Maida Heatter's Pecan Passion bars to the line up this year. So popular I had to make another pan of them!

However, if you are making these, do use a metal pan. The glass holds the heat long enough that the edge pieces could be crown busters!

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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I hauled out one of my Christmas trays and filled it with cookies I have been baking the past few days.

As a crossover note, the tray is one of my "finds" at a local thrift shop more than 20 years ago, while I still lived in the Valley. It was still in the original box, label intact. Got it for a dollar! It was even made in the USA!

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At the top are the cocoa cookies from a very old recipe. Reading clockwise are fruitcake cookies, oatmeal/sunflower seed/bing cherry "jumbles," peanut butter/oatmeal/pecan "ice-box" cookies (also a very old recipe which requires old-fashioned rolled oats) and last vanilla and anise and espresso pizelles. (Vanilla and anise baked on 5 inch irons, the espresso on a 3 inch iron.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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The gingerbread cookies Andie linked to (a couple years ago in this discussion!) turned out very well. They are slightly crisp along the edges but are soft and chewy even after a week. I forgot some of the tips in the recipe's reviews but remembered about refrigerating the dough before rolling onto balls. I didn't expect them to flatten out as much as they did but will know better next time. I'll probably increase the spices, too. Prior to baking, I rolled the dough balls in red sugar crystals instead of raw sugar to look more festive for the holiday.

I also made Dorie Greenspan's World Peace cookies which were a huge hit with my family.

We made Butterballs (like Mexican Wedding cakes or Russian Teacakes...but much better) and Jams (Made with a cookie press star pattern, the cookies are a tight spiral and have a dollop of apricot jam in their center. After baking, finely chopped walnuts are sprinkled over the centers of the cookies). Both recipes came from a 20 cent Pillsbury cookie book my mom bought deacades ago and are a Christmas tradition for our family.

My niece and I always make sugar cookie cut-outs. We keep it simple by using Pillsbury refrigerated dough (we add some mace and dried orange peel to the dough before rolling it out) and concentrate our efforts on icing and decorating the cookies after baking while listening to Christmas music.

 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

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We made the Honey-Cardamom Cutouts from Fine Cooking. These were the most flavorful cutouts I've ever made-- the honey and spice made for a very tasty cookie.

The black frosting was my daughter's idea-- because what says Christmas more than black cookies? :blink:

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I had fun making Christmas cookies for the first time (not to mention eating them), and I loved boxing them and giving them to people.

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From top to bottom: coffee snaps, cream cheese icebox cookies (these 2 are from the Joy of Cooking), checkerboards, pistachio/cranberry, World Peace cookies (still the best.) The coffee snaps were very good -- strongly coffee flavored. I later dipped them into chocolate so they were half covered, but I don't think I have a photo of that.

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More of the same, except on the left are Dorrie Greenspans Linzer sables. In back of the Linzer sables are gingerbread people. I used the CI recipe, it was excellent. In the plastic bags to the right of the checkerboard cookies are lime snowdrops. I loved those, they made my tastebuds smile.

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Strips of dough just waiting to become checkerboard cookies.

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I decided to make the almond flavored 7-layer cookies. I've been dying to make them for ages, so this was a good time for it. It was quite a learning experience -- and they came out pretty good. Above is the dough divided into thirds with food coloring added.

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The 3 sheets already baked. The recipe called for a 9x13 pan, but I wanted the layers to be very thin so I used a 10x15 jellyroll pan. I had to practically paint the batter onto the parchment paper, but they came out okay.

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The most difficult part was getting one layer on top of another without having the layer break into bits. The green and yellow layers cooperated, but the red layer broke in several places. I just put it back together like a jigsaw puzzle :rolleyes: and then turned the whole thing over so I would ice the green layer (smooth and without cracks) rather than the mended red layer. (The recipe called for chocolate on both ends, but I had no intention of doing that.) There is also apricot jam in between the layers.

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I did a daring thing this year -- I didn't make the cut-outs my family expects. I just didn't feel like it. I made the shortbread from Rose Levy Berenbaum's Christmas Cookies and gave them some nice dark chocolate stripes. I made gingerbread tiles from Tartine, something I really love. Cut them into plain little squares. Then I made a black walnut bar cookie, sort of like pecan pie bars with black walnut.

I rejoiced in the simplicity.

I like to bake nice things. And then I eat them. Then I can bake some more.

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The big surprise this year was the Fruitcake Cookies. I'm not sure why I added them to the line-up but I'm glad I did. It seems that everyone liked them & some (that would be the fruitcake haters), much to their astonishment.

I only mention this because not more than 30 seconds ago, I finished the last one off with my cup of nighttime tea & even though today is January 6th, it was still quite tasty. Tasty enough that I'm looking at the empty bag with genuine regret.

pat w.

I would live all my life in nonchalance and insouciance

Were it not for making a living, which is rather a nouciance.

-- Ogden Nash

http://bluestembooks.com/

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Pat, can you tell me whose recipe you used for fruitcake cookies?

I used the recipe Jaymes posted on the first page of this thread.

James, if you are reading this.... Thank You!

pat w.

I would live all my life in nonchalance and insouciance

Were it not for making a living, which is rather a nouciance.

-- Ogden Nash

http://bluestembooks.com/

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  • 10 months later...

Might not be enough time for you all to help here, but just in case. I'm doing a kids holiday cookie class tomorrow. Ages 7-14. I've been too busy with my own stuff to plan the recipes. I'm thinking three easy recipes and lot's of decorating, but because of how we promote our store, the recipes have to be unique. No sugar cookies. No hershey kiss in thumbprint, etc. (Not that those are bad, just not what I can have in my classes). I found Mama Kemp's Vienna cookies in RecipeGullet - that sounds promising. Any other suggestions while I sleep? As soon as I get up I'll need to start making recipe cards and prepping anything that needs chilling.

Thanks!

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May not be unique enough, but these are fantastic: (I used 1 cup creamy peanut butter, and dropped by very rounded Tbsp - used semi-sweet chocolate chips (Ghirardelli):

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Cookies

http://www.recipezaar.com/48532

Haven't tried these yet, but have gotten great reports from lots of people:

Coffee Toffee Chunk Cookies

http://dedewilson.com/recipes.html

These are great cookies (rolled in coconut):

Jam Thumbprints:

http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/recipes/re...6_25278,00.html

Edited by merstar (log)
There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.
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