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Jaymes

Christmas Cookies Redux

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Andie, very distressing news to hear.  All those activities are the joy of cooking.  I hope that you get it fixed and back in the swing soon.

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I want to try some new fruitcake cookies.  I have one I love, but I want to try the ones other people love.

 

Curious about the brand of mincemeat used, or do you make your own?  An English friends likes Sainsbury's which you can find (!) in Key Food in New York.  

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I'm looking for the perfect gingerbread/ginger cookie to give as Christmas gifts.

 

I liked Tartine's gingerbread tiles, I might do that again.

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I want to try some new fruitcake cookies.  I have one I love, but I want to try the ones other people love.

 

Curious about the brand of mincemeat used, or do you make your own?  An English friends likes Sainsbury's which you can find (!) in Key Food in New York.  

I make my own mincemeat.  Right now is a good time because it does need a few weeks to "mature" so the flavors meld. 

Granny Sweeney's mincemeat

This makes enough mincemeat for about 6 large pies or 8 - 8-inch pies.

2        sticks of unsalted butter -  

2        cups raisins

2        cups sultanas (golden raisins)

1        cup chopped dried plums (prunes)

1        cup Zante currants

1        cup chopped dried cherries

1        cup mixed peel - or citron - don't use the stuff with the red and green dyed cherries.

3        cups chopped dried applies

2        cups finely chopped nuts (Granny used hickory nuts but pecans, walnuts or ?? work - I have used pistachios)

1        Tablespoon ground cinnamon

2        teaspoons nutmeg (freshly grated is best)

1/2        teaspoon ground cloves

1/2        teaspoon ground mace

1/4        teaspoon ground black pepper

2        teaspoons kosher salt

1        cup firmly packed brown sugar  OR 2/3 cup dark molasses or sorghum *** This is much less sugar than in most recipes.

1 1/2    pints apple cider

1/2        cup bourbon

Optional -  You can add 12 ounces of well-done lean beef, finely minced plus about a cup of finely minced beef suet which was in the original recipe - I sometimes make it this way because it is richer, in my opinion, but it works okay without it.

In a 6-8 quart pot or Dutch oven,

melt the butter and allow it to cook until it just begins to brown.

Stir in the dried fruits

then add the spices, stir well to mix thoroughly

add the sugar and apple cider

Cook over medium heat, stirring often, for about 10 minutes.

Reduce heat, cover and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes.

Add the bourbon  bring the heat up to medium and cook uncovered, stirring frequently, for about 10 minutes.

Spoon some into a saucer - if there is excess liquid running out of the mincemeat, continue cooking for another 10 minutes.

Check again.  The mincemeat should have a "jammy" texture and very little free liquid.  

Ladle into sterilized jars or into one big container.

This DOES NOT NEED REFRIGERATION UNLESS YOU ARE USING THE MEAT VERSION...

 

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Linda, I can post Swedish ones, they are thin and crisp and the dough need a day to mature before baking.

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Thank you for the mincemeat recipe, that is actually really quite easy . . . 

 

I would love the Swedish gingerbread recipe.  I need to get started making the comparative recipes if I expect to have a winner in time for Christmas baking.

 

The cherry crop was lousy this year.  It's been bad (at least the availability of fresh sour cherries) for several years running.  No candied cherries for me, it will have to be dried.

 

Has anyone tried the ones King Arthur is now selling?  They look decent.

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I'm looking for the perfect gingerbread/ginger cookie to give as Christmas gifts.

 

I liked Tartine's gingerbread tiles, I might do that again.

 

Lindacakes, I've posted my absolute favourite gingerbread recipe on my blog. Don't be thrown off by the halloween-themed cookie cutters! I got the recipe out of an old issue of Food & Wine and I've been making it for eons.

 

And this chocolate ginger cookie is amazing. I can't say enough good things about this cookie!

 

Both of these cookies get specifically requested by my friends & coworkers every year.

 

I still don't know what I'm going to be making this year, and I've just signed my blog up for the Great Cookie Swap – I'm so excited! And nervous! I'm also organizing a cookie swap at work, so I think I'm going to be pretty busy for awhile there.

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I am curious how you compare this recipe to Tartine's Gingerbread Tiles.  The first book, the recipe is googleable.

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I haven't actually tried that recipe. I'll try to get to it within the next couple weeks though and get back to you!

 

Actually – a question. Does this recipe need to be cut into tiles? Has anyone tried using cookie cutters with it?


Edited by emmalish (log)

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That would be lovely, I will try to try yours in that time period.

 

I rolled out the dough, then rolled it with a Springerle rolling pin.  Then I cut the dough into squares based on the Springerle pattern.

 

It looked really pretty with a glaze on it, like a snowy scene.

 

This is a cross between a cookie and a cake -- spongey for a cookie, and dense for a cake.  I really liked it.

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This is a cross between a cookie and a cake -- spongey for a cookie, and dense for a cake.  I really liked it.

 

It sounds so nice! Did you find that it spread or distorted much? I'm definitely tempted to try it with cookie cutters, otherwise I'll need to buy a patterned rolling pin (such a hardship).

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I don't think that it spread or distorted much, but as I recall, I baked it in a sheet?  It's been a while.  I do know that the Springerle pattern held, so it couldn't have puffed up that much.

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So at this point I've done Berlinerkranser, Pfeffernusse, Lemon Melting Moments, Pecan Thumbprints (still to be filled, I keep the tradition of the way my grandmother did them and fill them with a basic powdered sugar/milk icing in assorted colors), Orange Hazelnut Biscotti, Gingerbread Biscotti, Cinnamon Cloud-Nine Crunchies (a yeast cookie from Rose's Christmas Cookies), Lebkuchen, Chocolate Sparkle, Chocolate Peppermint Biscotti and Springerle. My goal was to do the 12 cookies of Christmas so I'll have to squeeze one more in before I can say I'm done.

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So at this point I've done Berlinerkranser, Pfeffernusse, Lemon Melting Moments, Pecan Thumbprints (still to be filled, I keep the tradition of the way my grandmother did them and fill them with a basic powdered sugar/milk icing in assorted colors), Orange Hazelnut Biscotti, Gingerbread Biscotti, Cinnamon Cloud-Nine Crunchies (a yeast cookie from Rose's Christmas Cookies), Lebkuchen, Chocolate Sparkle, Chocolate Peppermint Biscotti and Springerle. My goal was to do the 12 cookies of Christmas so I'll have to squeeze one more in before I can say I'm done.

Wow, I got tired just reading this post! That's a very impressive list, they all sound great. Do you freeze the cookies already baked, or do you freeze the dough and then bake as the holiday approaches? The chocolate peppermint biscotti have caught my eye, can you share that recipe? I send cookies to friends, and biscotti hold up so well, that sounds like a nice one.

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Sylvia, make some gingerbreads the lazy way, first the dough one day, then roll it out the next and then " artisan" cookies with a pizza slicer, DONE:

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Tri2Cook, I'm with cakewalk – just reading that list was exhausting!

 

I've finally caught that stupid cold that's been going around my office so I haven't felt up to doing a lot of baking. Boo. I had big plans... I did make peppermint marshmallows dipped in chocolate this weekend, and I made some sour cherry white chocolate cookies as part of a cookie exchange. I want to do some savoury biscuits or crackers to offset all the sweets though. Maybe tonight...

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The chocolate peppermint biscotti have caught my eye, can you share that recipe? I send cookies to friends, and biscotti hold up so well, that sounds like a nice one.

The recipe I used is 2 3/4 cups flour, 3/4 cup cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon salt mixed together then mixed into 3 eggs, 1/2 cup melted butter, 1 1/3 cups sugar and 1 1/2 teaspoons peppermint extract that have been mixed together. I just took the recipe for the orange nut biscotti, which I really like, and replaced part of the flour with cocoa, left out the citrus zest and replaced the orange oil with peppermint extract. I considered tossing in some chocolate chips but at the last minute, in a fit of creating extra work for myself, I decided to partially dip them in chocolate instead.

 


Edited by Tri2Cook (log)
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... at the last minute, in a fit of creating extra work for myself ...

 

 

:laugh:  And I thought I was the only one who did that sort of thing!

 

Thanks for the recipe.

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Does anyone have a good recipe recommendation for soft, chewy vanilla sugar cookies?  Not the crunchy kinds for cookie cutters & decorating.  A quick google search brought up lots of chewy sugar cookie recipes, but there's so much variation - some call for buttermilk, others cream of tartar, or cornstarch.....

 

TIA!

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Does anyone have a good recipe recommendation for soft, chewy vanilla sugar cookies?  Not the crunchy kinds for cookie cutters & decorating.  A quick google search brought up lots of chewy sugar cookie recipes, but there's so much variation - some call for buttermilk, others cream of tartar, or cornstarch.....

 

TIA!

 

I've made this one here. It's a roll-out recipe for cookie cutters, but it's NOT crunchy at all. They're very soft and tender. Or were you looking for a drop cookie?

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I will only have gingerbread this year,  people are ill, I mean we have  everything but the plague here. I wish it would end soon,  

 

Oh well but I am baking my grandmothers gingerbreads, called Stockholms pepparkakor.

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I decided no cookies this year. And I was going to say no also to gingerbread house but my children really begged for one. I made two small houses...good I still had the model from the previous year and a recipe that works for me...tomorrow I'll go to my daughter preschool and with the children we are going to decorate and assemble the house.

My father, who is visiting, also begged my for some "cartellate", "purcidd" and almond cookies...I'm not sure if I can make it. If so, I'll come back with pictures.

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I've made this one here. It's a roll-out recipe for cookie cutters, but it's NOT crunchy at all. They're very soft and tender. Or were you looking for a drop cookie?

 

I was thinking a drop cookie, although those cookies pictured in the recipe look scrumptious.  I might try those too.

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