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What cookies are you baking for Christmas this year? 2011 Edition

roxlet Dec 11, 2011 05:17 AM

This year I am starting off with King Arthur's Chocolate Peanut Butter cookies, as well as their lemon wedding cookies which will be my new additions. Medrich's ginger cookes, spritz cookies and sugar cookies will hold down the traditions. I will make struffoli as we get closer to Christmas, and am debating on making Casadetti, which are a Sicilian tradition and which a friend of mine aptly renamed cannoli ravioli.

What are you baking this year?

  1. TrishUntrapped Nov 15, 2012 06:32 PM

    If we are thinking Christmas cookies already (and it would be nice to get through Thanksgiving first) why don't we start a new 2012 thread?

    3 Replies
    1. re: TrishUntrapped
      Caitlin McGrath Nov 15, 2012 06:42 PM

      There's one going here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/875786

      1. re: Caitlin McGrath
        TrishUntrapped Nov 15, 2012 07:09 PM

        Holy gamoly! There sure is!

      2. re: TrishUntrapped
        vvvindaloo Nov 15, 2012 08:23 PM

        Oh, I think there must already be at least one Christmas cookie thread started for this year by now- if you look back over the years, you'll find they usually begin in October/November!
        I bumped this one because I had a direct question regarding roxlet's recipe above... Thank you and happy baking!

      3. vvvindaloo Nov 15, 2012 04:23 PM

        Roxlet, I am so tempted to make these (we call them Cassatelle) because one of our most favorite things to eat on the entire island of Sicily (which we spend a decent amount of time) are the cassatelle. You have to go eat the ones made by that specific bar (Italian-style coffee bar/pasticceria, of course) in Castellamare -the name escapes me at the moment- where they are served piping hot all day and evening and the line at the bar is a steady stream of customers who could support the business and turn a tidy profit purchasing that one product alone.
        If you are interested, let me know and I will hunt down the name for you.
        Anyway, my concern is that they won't be much good after day 1. When they are fresh and warm is when they are best, and I have managed to wait long enough to try them fresh and room temp :), and they were still very good. But I've never tried them the next day. Is the ricotta filling still creamy or does it dry out? If you couldn't eat them until day 2 or 3, would they still be worth making? Thanks in advance.

        4 Replies
        1. re: vvvindaloo
          sweetpotato Nov 15, 2012 04:30 PM

          You have GOT to try these! Oh my gosh, I could eat these every day for the rest of my life and be a VERY happy girl!


          1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
          1 cup white sugar
          1 egg
          1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
          1/4 cup all-purpose flour
          1/2 teaspoon salt
          1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
          1 cup quick cooking oats


          Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Eat a spoonful of Nutella.

          In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter, sugar, egg, and vanilla. Eat a spoonful of Nutella.

          Add flour, salt, baking powder, and oats. Mix until combined. Eat a spoonful of Nutella.

          Using a measuring spoon, drop 1 teaspoon of dough onto the prepared baking sheet, about 2 ½ inches apart (the dough will spread a lot). Eat a spoonful of Nutella.

          Bake the cookies for 8 to 9 minutes (depending on your oven) or until the edges start to brown. Keep in mind that these can overbake very quickly. Eat a spoonful of Nutella.

          Do not remove from the parchment paper until completely cooled.

          Spread Nutella on half of the cookies, topping them with the rest of the cookies to create sandwiches.

          1. re: sweetpotato
            Chocolatechipkt Nov 15, 2012 08:31 PM

            I love this recipe already!

            1. re: sweetpotato
              Tehama Feb 12, 2013 08:57 AM

              Sounds divine! Thanks!

            2. re: vvvindaloo
              roxlet Feb 11, 2013 06:01 PM

              Sorry I missed this, V. We eat them for a couple of days after they're made, and sometimes heat them in a low oven on a rack.

            3. ipsedixit Dec 23, 2011 08:31 AM

              Does Char Siu Bao count?

              That's what I'm leaving out for Santa.

              A big plate of baked Char Siu Bao and a jug of wine brew.

              1 Reply
              1. re: ipsedixit
                Chocolatechipkt Dec 23, 2011 08:49 AM

                Oh yum! Your Santa is lucky!

              2. Chocolatechipkt Dec 21, 2011 08:08 PM

                This year I made triple peanut cookies (2x), ginger spice cookies (2x ... Epi recipe), reverse choc. chip cookies (2x), Bittman's macaroons dipped in dark choc. (2x), avalanche bars (2x), caramelitas (salty caramel oat bars, from Kelsey on the Cooking Channel), and almond buttercrunch (3x). Plus a batch of pb oatmeal dog biscuits for the dogs.

                5 Replies
                1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                  buttertart Dec 22, 2011 09:57 AM

                  Did you double or triple the recipes, or make batches?

                  1. re: buttertart
                    Chocolatechipkt Dec 22, 2011 07:18 PM

                    I doubled the ginger cookies and the reverse choc. chip recipes. Everything else was in batches, I think.

                    1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                      HillJ Dec 22, 2011 08:38 PM

                      What is an avalanche bar?

                      1. re: HillJ
                        Chocolatechipkt Dec 23, 2011 06:13 AM

                        It's a different take on a rice krispie treat. You mix melted white chocolate and peanut butter together, stir in rice krispies, and then add in mini choc. chips and mini marshmallows. Pour it all into a pan, press the mixture down, sprinkle a few more mini chips on top, and you're done. They're very yummy.

                        1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                          HillJ Dec 23, 2011 08:08 AM

                          Oh okay I get it now. Around here we call them reindeer bars (I don't know why that name).

                2. melpy Dec 21, 2011 08:25 AM

                  I made Rosemary walnut butter cookies, homemade thin mints, and oatmeal chocolate chip cranberry.

                  I think my sister is doing chocolate chip, oatmeal, snickerdoodles and gingersnaps. We are in charge of the Christmas eve cookie platter.
                  The tough part is not eating them all before Saturday.

                  1. r
                    rstuart Dec 21, 2011 08:18 AM

                    Think that I'm pretty much done for year.. have distributed the bags to my friends and brought in the tins for work .
                    Whipped shortbread
                    Austrian Raspberry shortbread
                    7-layer cookies (aka Hello Dollies)
                    English Toffee Bars
                    Sugar and Spice Pecans
                    Oreo truffles (with peppermint oreos)
                    Peppermint Bars
                    Chocolate Toffee Pretzel Bark
                    Nutmeg Maple Butter cookies (mostly so I could use my Ikea winter animal cookie cutter set.. sadly the legs of the moose cookies never made it off the cookie sheet, so I had to eat those right away!)
                    Also made cranberry bliss bars for some work potlucks.
                    I meant to add a ginger cookie/bar this year, but didn't get around to it! Next year...

                    1. n
                      nami54 Dec 19, 2011 10:16 AM

                      two variations on basic butter cookies: bittersweet buttons and jam slices drizzled with dark chocolate,
                      lemon-ginger biscotti
                      blondies with mini chocolate chips

                      I may have to do either some eggnog cookies or apricot pastries.

                      1. monavano Dec 19, 2011 08:42 AM

                        White chocolate, dried cherry and hazelnut cookies.
                        Rugelach dough is waiting for me to get off my keester and make them! I use BC's recipe and it could not be easier. There will be strawberry, walnut and choc, and apricot and walnut rugelach.

                        1. j
                          jarona Dec 19, 2011 08:40 AM

                          Tonight I'll be making my biscotti. My daughter will be making Momofuko's (sp) Compost Cookies. I've already made Pum;kin Roulade cake truffles. Toward the week's end I'll be making my Buche de Noel. On wednesday night I will leave the egg whites out overnight so I can make my macaron on Thursday--I've already made the fillings: Pistachio, Raspberry cream; almond cream, and Mocha Nutella. That's it for this year.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: jarona
                            julesrules Dec 19, 2011 12:59 PM

                            Thanks for the reminder about the Compost Cookie! I *just* finished dissecting pretzels to make antlers for my rudolph cookies, am left with a bag of pretzel bits and was thinking that I vaguely recalled a cookie recipe with crushed pretzels but could not put my finger on it :)

                          2. j
                            jester99 Dec 19, 2011 08:34 AM

                            So far I have made:

                            Peppermint Cornflake marshmellow chocolate chip cookies
                            7 layer cookies
                            Linzer cookies
                            sugar cutouts
                            a pomgrante molasses thumbprint cookie( made it up, still tweeking)
                            regular choco chip cookies

                            I want to do these snikerdoodles with cardomon

                            1. roxlet Dec 19, 2011 08:28 AM

                              My first cookies are JanHagels from Carol Walter's book, Great Cookies. These ARE great, and my son said that they are his new favorite cookie, only problem is that the yield is not fabulous, so I am making another batch today. Good news is, that they last and don't go stale quickly. Basically, it's a very short almond scented dough pressed into a jelly roll pan, brushed with egg white, covered with sliced almonds and sprinkled with a mixture of cinnamon and sugar.

                              I think I will also make the lemon wedding cookies today.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: roxlet
                                buttertart Dec 19, 2011 10:20 AM

                                Those Jan Hagels sound good - think Nick has a recipe for them too, in "Tour".

                                1. re: buttertart
                                  roxlet Dec 20, 2011 05:57 AM

                                  They are really good. Plus, according to the recipe, they store well -- up to 3 weeks!

                              2. m
                                masha Dec 19, 2011 08:03 AM

                                So far, I've made:

                                Sugar cut-outs
                                Spritz cookies
                                Chocolate cookies with white chocolate chips
                                Chocolate toffee bars
                                Oatmeal raisin/chocolate chip cookies
                                Danish butter cookies

                                I still have a couple batches to go. Not sure but am leaning towards making:

                                more chocolate cookies with white choc chips (super easy & DH keeps eating them before I can fill my gift tins)
                                jam thumbprints
                                Maida Haiter's Viennese Chocolate walnut bars

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: masha
                                  buttertart Dec 19, 2011 10:20 AM

                                  The Viennese ones are wonderful, I love her.

                                  1. re: buttertart
                                    masha Dec 19, 2011 10:24 AM

                                    I made them last year and they were a lot of work for not much yield, but my husband really liked them. So I am saving them for last, with the idea that I'll mainly keep them for us, rather than giving them as gifts, which is where most of the cookies go.

                                    1. re: masha
                                      buttertart Dec 19, 2011 10:25 AM

                                      Good plan. A favorite of my husband's too.

                                2. TrishUntrapped Dec 18, 2011 07:37 PM

                                  Chocolate Almond Lace Cookies
                                  Chocolate Crunch Cookies
                                  Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookies
                                  Peanut Butter Cup Cookies

                                  Raspberry Jam Splits (Got the recipe here on CHOW)
                                  Mini Gingerbread Whoopie Pies with Lemon Cream
                                  Word of Mouth Lemon Coconut Bars

                                  8 Replies
                                  1. re: TrishUntrapped
                                    roxlet Dec 18, 2011 09:30 PM

                                    Gorgeous! It seems you love chocolate, and I would love to find out more about the chocolate crunch cookie.

                                    1. re: roxlet
                                      TrishUntrapped Dec 19, 2011 04:25 AM

                                      Hi Roxlet,

                                      These cookies are an example of where the sum is equal to more than the parts. The only ingredients are three kinds of chocolate and corn flakes. Also on the plus side, they are non-bake and one recipe makes a ton if you make them small. People always ask for the recipe and are shocked when they find out what's in them. They ship well too.

                                      Chocolate Crunch Cookies

                                      16 ounces milk chocolate (I tend to use Ghirardelli bars, some folks use Hershey, whatever you like)
                                      4 ounces unsweetened chocolate (or bittersweet or special dark)
                                      12 ounces semisweet chocolate (or chocolate chips)
                                      10 cups cornflakes

                                      1. In a large metal pot (don't use non-stick it effects the chocolate and can make it seize) break up the chocolate and melt them over very low heat stirring gently just until melted and glossy. Don't overheat. Can also melt in a double boiler.

                                      2. Remove from heat and add the cornflakes, gently stirring until they are all coated (will take a few minutes), careful not to crush them.

                                      3. Drop by spoonfuls (I make mine small) on waxed/parchment paper. Cool at room temperature to set for two to three hours. Yield 9 - 11 dozen depending on size. Store at room temperature. Don't refrigerate.

                                      1. re: TrishUntrapped
                                        roxlet Dec 19, 2011 05:05 AM

                                        What a riot! Those look great! How many boxes of corn flakes makes 10 cups, would you say?

                                        1. re: roxlet
                                          TrishUntrapped Dec 19, 2011 05:35 AM

                                          According to the cornflakes box one ounce equals one cup. So I would say 10 ounces equals 10 cups! Enjoy!

                                        2. re: TrishUntrapped
                                          BigSal Dec 19, 2011 05:13 AM

                                          After reading your post, I was reminded of Jaques Pepin's rocher recipe. He makes rochers with just chocolate and corn flakes (or Rice Krispies) and there is another variation with chocolate, corn flakes and hazelnuts. Sounded easy and delicious. http://www.kqed.org/w/morefastfoodmyw...

                                          1. re: BigSal
                                            TrishUntrapped Dec 19, 2011 05:34 AM

                                            That's right Big Sal, I recall seeing Mr. Pepin make these on TV. GMTA as they say!

                                          2. re: TrishUntrapped
                                            mirage Dec 22, 2011 04:47 AM

                                            I have friends over every Tuesday and I usually make cookies for them. This week my oven was broken but you posted this recipe. So I made them. The ladies loved them! And my husband thought they were (note the past-tense, and it is a big batch) "awesome". So funny! Anyway, thank you for a very timely recipe.

                                            1. re: mirage
                                              TrishUntrapped Dec 22, 2011 05:11 AM

                                              Oh that's wonderful Mirage!!! Glad everyone enjoyed them. Like the hokey pokey, that's what it's all about.

                                      2. b
                                        bonniebee Dec 18, 2011 09:07 AM

                                        This year I'm making a bunch of different cookies to donate to our local homeless shelter and as well as some for myself. Heres what i've made so far/plan on making:

                                        Gingerbread men
                                        Sugar cookies
                                        Cucidati (italian filled cookies)
                                        Chocolate cherry thumbprints
                                        Chocolate crinkles
                                        Dutch boterspeculaasjes (dutch spice cookies)

                                        Non cookies:
                                        Peanutbutter marshmallow squares
                                        Peppermint bark
                                        Peanut brittle
                                        Butter tarts

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: bonniebee
                                          buttertart Dec 18, 2011 05:19 PM

                                          Yay! Butter tarts.

                                        2. j
                                          julesrules Dec 17, 2011 07:05 AM

                                          I have done Cranberry Bliss Bars and Grandma's "shortbread" from the side of the old Canadian Cornstarch box - more of a melting moment recipe than a true shortbread. I always add dark chocolate chips and orange peel to these. They didn't turn out so hot this year, I think I overbaked them (was trying to get them to brown a bit, but at 300 not sure that can happen). I also used Chipits special dark chips instead of my usual Ghirardelli 60%, because they were on sale and I do find the Ghirardelli chips a little big for a small cookie. That was a mistake flavour-wise and I will go back to Ghirardelli next time, maybe do tiny cookies with one chip in the middle.
                                          I still want to do slice and bake eggnog cookies with red & green cherry holly decoration and a rolled cut-out cookie, maybe stained glass gingerbread. Also intrigued by the peanut butter Rudolph cookies, of course my kids would love them, but I'm not convinced by the instructions to put the pretzels, smarties etc on AFTER baking, seems like they would fall off.

                                          5 Replies
                                          1. re: julesrules
                                            buttertart Dec 17, 2011 08:34 AM

                                            julesrules...the cornstarch box "shortbreads"?

                                            1. re: buttertart
                                              julesrules Dec 17, 2011 08:38 AM

                                              Here's a blogpost with a picture of the original recipe on the box:

                                              They're very simple, not necessarily a recipe I would 'recommend' per se but they make a small batch and my chocolate orange version feels very Christmassy :)

                                              1. re: julesrules
                                                buttertart Dec 17, 2011 08:55 AM

                                                The pic of the box got me sniffling remembering Mom and home. :)

                                                1. re: buttertart
                                                  julesrules Dec 17, 2011 09:34 AM

                                                  Awww.... :) One of these days I will have to try her buttertart recipe, it's around here somewhere right?

                                                  1. re: julesrules
                                                    buttertart Dec 18, 2011 05:18 PM

                                                    That it is! :)

                                          2. GraceW Dec 17, 2011 06:35 AM

                                            Besides maybe hand-decorated sugar cookies, I do not plan on baking much else (otherwise, I will eat too many cookies and not be able to enjoy sweets on the actual holiday because I'll be sick of sweet things...) BUT: if I do venture into trying a new one... it would be these really REALLY easy ones..


                                            1. babette feasts Dec 14, 2011 04:47 PM

                                              Friends and family get chocolates, so I don't have to shop. Flavors to be decided this weekend when I make them :)

                                              The restaurant gives cookies to the hotel concierges that send us lots of business, so concierges are getting:
                                              honey caramels
                                              milk chocolate salted almond bars
                                              orange-cardamom-pecan mexican wedding cakes
                                              rum balls
                                              lemon pretzel cookies (we have pretzels as a bar snack, though sweet ones would be fun)
                                              gingerbread cookies w/icing
                                              vanilla sugar cookies (some maybe sandwiched with raspberry jam)
                                              macarons (unless I decide I have too much already)
                                              ...and maybe brownies if I have some leftover from a catering, or chocolate peppermint crinkles

                                              5 Replies
                                              1. re: babette feasts
                                                roxlet Dec 15, 2011 05:08 AM

                                                How do you make the chocolate peppermint crinkles? My son loves the chocolate/peppermint combination, and I just bought some crushed peppermint to bake with, so I'd love the recipe. TIA!

                                                1. re: roxlet
                                                  Caitlin McGrath Dec 15, 2011 10:49 AM

                                                  roxlet, I've made these ones before, and they're really good (I don't think they really need the chocolate chips, to be honest; they already have plenty of chocolate): http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                    roxlet Dec 15, 2011 11:01 AM

                                                    Lots of peppermint in those. Are they too crunchy with all that peppermint?

                                                    1. re: roxlet
                                                      Caitlin McGrath Dec 15, 2011 11:09 AM

                                                      Not at all. They're soft, with little bits of crunch here and there, but the crushed peppermint isn't real hard and crunchy in them.

                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                        roxlet Dec 15, 2011 11:49 AM

                                                        OK, I am bookmarking that page. It seems like a really nice Christmas cookie.

                                              2. r
                                                Redstickchef Dec 13, 2011 05:01 PM

                                                My Christmas Cookie List this year are as follows:

                                                Chocolate Chip
                                                White Chocolate Cranberry Macadamia Nut Cookies
                                                Decorated Sugar Cookies
                                                Ambrosia Macaroons
                                                Grasshopper Squares

                                                I feel like I am missing something though, so I might add on later.

                                                1. f
                                                  FlyerFan Dec 13, 2011 01:39 PM

                                                  Wow, Roxlet, the Casadetti sound wonderful - would you share your recipe?

                                                  9 Replies
                                                  1. re: FlyerFan
                                                    roxlet Dec 13, 2011 02:35 PM

                                                    It may take some time to dig the recipe out, but here's the outline. Basically you make a very short pastry dough (my father used to use lard in his). Roll it out and make ravioli of any size you like by filling with cannoli cream. Seal well, and fry. When the pastries are nicely browned, remove from the oil, drain and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. They may be one of the most delicious things there is. I will dig out the old recipe file. It's time I put it into a word document anyway!

                                                    1. re: roxlet
                                                      buttertart Dec 13, 2011 02:47 PM

                                                      The initials OMG come to mind. Oh boy.

                                                      1. re: buttertart
                                                        FlyerFan Dec 13, 2011 07:57 PM

                                                        You beat me to it - as I read the description all I could think was OMG. Thank you roxlet, those sound absolutely incredible!

                                                        1. re: FlyerFan
                                                          roxlet Dec 14, 2011 04:30 AM

                                                          Yes, they are, and they were the ultimate Christmas treat of my childhood since they were only made once a year. Carol Field has a version in her book Celebrating Italy that is for lent, made with finely mashed chickpeas, but somehow I've never been tempted to try those.

                                                          1. re: roxlet
                                                            buttertart Dec 15, 2011 10:07 AM

                                                            There are some interesting "weird" Italian dessert things in Dolci too, quite fascinating.

                                                      2. re: roxlet
                                                        roxlet Dec 17, 2011 05:45 AM

                                                        OK, here is the recipe I have, written on a yellowing index card.
                                                        Casatedi (note that there are so many variations on the spelling of this!)

                                                        2 lbs of flour
                                                        10 oz. leaf lard
                                                        1 tablespoon sugar
                                                        1 egg
                                                        1/2 cup of water

                                                        2 lbs fine, fresh ricotta, drained overnight in cheesecloth
                                                        11/2 cups of sugar
                                                        mini chocolate chips
                                                        glaced fruits (very optional -- I never use them)
                                                        Mix these together for the filling

                                                        Cut lard (or butter/crisco combo when I can't get good lard) into flour and sugar. Lightly beat the egg with the water, and mix into the flour (start with 1/2 cup of water mixed with the egg. Add additional water to make the dough pliable but not wet). Mix throughly, and let rest for 2 hours.

                                                        Roll the dough out, and form into any ravioli shape you like. (Usually half moons, but I once made these in a small ravioli pan and served three on a plate with an additional dollop of the ricotta mixture sprinkled with a small amount of cocoa). Make sure that the casadetti are completely sealed, and don't over-fill. Use a little water and the tines of a fork to assure that they are sealed. Fry until golden brown, and drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. It's hard to resist these warm (I had some almost hot from a bakery in Sicily), but I think they taste best room temperature. If not serving the same day, forgo the cinnamon sugar, refrigerate, and when ready to serve, put them in a warm oven to crisp up a bit. Sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar and serve. These actually keep very well.

                                                        1. re: roxlet
                                                          buttertart Dec 17, 2011 08:28 AM

                                                          Oh God, roxlet, you hadda go and post this recipe!!!

                                                          1. re: roxlet
                                                            Kellz Dec 19, 2011 08:33 AM

                                                            These sound wonderful !! I'm not a huge chocolate fan. Must I add the mini chocolate chips?

                                                            1. re: Kellz
                                                              roxlet Dec 19, 2011 11:44 AM

                                                              No, don't add them if you don' want to. Maybe some candied orange or lemon peel instead? Something to give the filling a bit of texture...

                                                      3. sunshine842 Dec 13, 2011 10:34 AM

                                                        This year, I made:

                                                        Chocolate chip (by popular demand, not because I consider them Christmas cookies!)
                                                        Chocolate-covered cherry cookies
                                                        English toffee

                                                        On a normal year (crazy schedule this year) I would have also made Peanut Butter Blossoms, Krumkake, and Snickerdoodles.

                                                        Might still make my mom's Chiffon Walnut Bars and Doodlebugs (those chow mein noodle and chocolate abominations that my husband loves)

                                                        5 Replies
                                                        1. re: sunshine842
                                                          buttertart Dec 13, 2011 02:49 PM

                                                          sunshine842, could you possibly post the walnut chiffon bars? They sound great. Formid'!

                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                            sunshine842 Dec 14, 2011 10:05 AM

                                                            I have NO idea where this came from -- I remember her making these in the early 70s -- but they're awesome. The recipe reads a little strangely, but it's her handwritten recipe.

                                                            Chiffon Nut Bars
                                                            makes 16 bars - bake at 350F for 20 minutes.

                                                            2 eggs
                                                            1C brown sugar
                                                            14 tsp salt
                                                            1C coarsely chopped nuts
                                                            1/2 C salad oil
                                                            1 tsp vanilla
                                                            1/2 C sifted flour

                                                            1) Beat eggs until thick and lemon color
                                                            2.) Add sugar
                                                            3) stir in salt, salad oil, and vanilla
                                                            4) Add flour
                                                            5) Add 3/4 C walnuts
                                                            6) Spread in pan and add rest of nuts on top. bake.

                                                            1. re: sunshine842
                                                              roxlet Dec 14, 2011 04:37 PM

                                                              Is this sort of airy in texture? Is that why they are called "Chiffon" nut bars?

                                                              1. re: roxlet
                                                                sunshine842 Dec 14, 2011 11:25 PM

                                                                No, actually, they're quite moist and gooey. I don't make it up, I just report it. ;)

                                                                1. re: sunshine842
                                                                  buttertart Dec 15, 2011 10:07 AM

                                                                  This has my husband's name written all over it, thanks.

                                                        2. s
                                                          sandylc Dec 12, 2011 08:25 PM

                                                          Oh, I forgot gingersnaps!

                                                          1. s
                                                            sandylc Dec 12, 2011 08:24 PM

                                                            Almond Hazelnut Biscotti
                                                            Mexican Wedding Cakes
                                                            Almond Crescents
                                                            Chocolate Pecan Thumbprints
                                                            Rainbow Venetians
                                                            Cream Cheese Spritz
                                                            Nut Brittles
                                                            Alton Brown's White Trash (people insist)
                                                            Anything else I can come up with/have time for....

                                                            1. Emme Dec 12, 2011 07:52 PM

                                                              i'm doing all my usual suspects, but the newer ones to this year's line-up:
                                                              White Balsamic Velvet Balls - kind of like a white balsamic melting moment
                                                              Key Lime White Chocolate w/ Garam Masala
                                                              Espresso Cinnamon
                                                              Rugelach - new variation with a sort of vanilla cheesy filling
                                                              Chewy Custard Bars - came from a challenge i did earlier this fall
                                                              Persimmon Thyme Shortbread
                                                              Rice Krispie Treats - had some fun with wacky flavors of marshmallow i snagged at the 99 cent store

                                                              reading all these posts is making me hungry!

                                                              5 Replies
                                                              1. re: Emme
                                                                Caitlin McGrath Dec 13, 2011 12:58 PM

                                                                I want to hear more about persimmon thyme shortbread. What kind of persimmons and how are you incorporating them?

                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                  Emme Dec 13, 2011 08:16 PM

                                                                  i'm doing several "test versions" with different variations and only using fuyus (as these are my favorite)... the incorporations i'm considering:
                                                                  -dried persimmon bits
                                                                  -cooked and cooled persimmon puree - in a creamed variation of shortbread, cream the butter then add in the puree. add sugar, etc etc.
                                                                  -persimmon glaze - perhaps infused with the thyme (in this case, may or may not add thyme to shortbread itself)

                                                                  worst case scenario - i'll do a thyme shortbread sandwiched with persimmon butter.

                                                                  1. re: Emme
                                                                    Caitlin McGrath Dec 13, 2011 09:25 PM

                                                                    I'm not sure what the texture will be like with the puree, and I did wonder if you were using dried persimmons. I hope you'll post about your results, as I'm curious.

                                                                    1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                      Emme Dec 14, 2011 08:08 PM

                                                                      i'm not sure either... i'm going to cook the moisture out of the persimmon puree then mix with butter then chill. i know that the butter won't be the same, but we'll see!

                                                                2. re: Emme
                                                                  CraftyLatvian Dec 19, 2011 11:00 AM

                                                                  Key lime white chocolate with garam masala sounds wonderful. Do you mind sharing the recipe? Is it a cookie? I love experiemnting with different garam masalas and creating my own mixtures depending on the food. Currently I have one made up that has more anise and cinnamon notes that I would love to use in a dessert.

                                                                3. monavano Dec 12, 2011 05:10 PM

                                                                  I made Kelsey's Essentials Carmelitas. Basically a crust of oatmeal, flour and butter that's blind baked and topped with chocolate, nuts and caramel sauce. Finally, it's topped with more crumb and baked again.
                                                                  Terrific, but you have to watch the caramel as the recipe calls for it to be cooked to dark amber and that's way to long. It got burned and bitter, so I started over again and took it to a light amber and that was the ticket.

                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                  1. re: monavano
                                                                    roxlet Dec 18, 2011 05:10 AM

                                                                    Can you post the exact recipe for these. I adore caramels!

                                                                    1. re: roxlet
                                                                      monavano Dec 19, 2011 08:19 AM

                                                                      The recipe is from Kelsey's Essentials. Here it is:


                                                                      Although they turned out great, there are a couple essential changes I made and would strongly suggest.
                                                                      1. The first bake of the crust takes more like 20 minutes than 10
                                                                      2. I lined the baking dish with tin foil (I always use extra long, heavy duty) and sprayed with Pam to make getting them out of the pan and slicing easier.
                                                                      3. The recipe calls for the caramel to be deep amber, which is WAY OVERCOOKED!. Burned even. You're caramel will be bitter. I wound up throwing out the first batch and making a second, which I took to light amber before removing it from the heat. If your cream seizes up on your whisk, just put the caramel over low heat (and go ahead and add the butter) and continue to stir until the cream loosens up and all will be fine.

                                                                      eta: the crust/topping needs does not need 2 1/2 sticks of butter. I used 2 and it was plenty

                                                                  2. buttertart Dec 12, 2011 05:04 PM

                                                                    I'm baking for overseas visitors at my office this week, so made a half sheet pan worth of Malgieri's supernatural brownies and this dreadfully appealing thing -- http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/201... - haven't cut into it yet for fear of the consequences. Taking a fruitcake too.
                                                                    Will have to make shortbread (without which it just isn't Christmas) and am thinking about Florentines for me and the Beast (they have romantic associations dating back to the early days of us).

                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                                      roxlet Dec 12, 2011 05:42 PM

                                                                      I would love a report on that evil peanut thing!

                                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                                        buttertart Dec 13, 2011 10:29 AM

                                                                        It is evil. It is great. It has too much topping for my taste but it is worth trying and then some. Fun to make. Suggest halving it and making it in an 8x8. Then packing it up and giving to the neighbors just to get it the hell out of the house.

                                                                        1. re: buttertart
                                                                          buttertart Dec 15, 2011 10:10 AM

                                                                          Baker's remorse - I took this to work and it seems it was a bit weird for the German visitors...not so for me...I must have eaten a dozen pieces by now. (Don't usually eat much of what I bake.) Sweet and salty and ohmygoodness. Beware.

                                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                                            rstuart Dec 21, 2011 08:03 AM

                                                                            Hmm... now I have to try it!

                                                                    2. m
                                                                      mse924 Dec 12, 2011 04:56 PM

                                                                      Somehow I always end up getting roped in to making cookies for our holiday festivities at work. This year's mix includes:

                                                                      -toffee bars
                                                                      -candy cane cookies
                                                                      -cake mix cookies (the only time I ever use cake mix...and the Christmas Funfetti mix is fun!)
                                                                      -creme de menthe bars
                                                                      -dark chocolate orange cookies
                                                                      -maple cream cookies
                                                                      -sugar cookies (already baked and in the freezer, ready to be iced and decorated next week)

                                                                      I'm also planning on trying to make Smitten Kitchen's fig and walnut biscotti. If I get too lazy though I'll just substitute some of those peanut butter kiss cookies with the bag of caramel Kisses I already have :)

                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                      1. re: mse924
                                                                        roxlet Dec 18, 2011 05:10 AM

                                                                        Toffee bars? Please tell me how you make those!!

                                                                        1. re: roxlet
                                                                          mse924 Dec 18, 2011 10:27 AM

                                                                          Super easy! "Toffee" might be a misnomer, but it's what our family always called them growing up. I have a hand-copied recipe from my mom so I'm not sure where she got it from...

                                                                          1 c. softened butter
                                                                          1 c. packed brown sugar
                                                                          1 egg yolk
                                                                          1 tsp vanilla extract
                                                                          2 c. flour
                                                                          6 Hershey bars, broken into squares
                                                                          chopped nuts

                                                                          -Cream together butter and sugar
                                                                          -Blend in egg yolk and vanilla
                                                                          -Mix in flour to form a smooth dough
                                                                          -Press dough into a large rectangle baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes at 375*
                                                                          -Immediately after removing from oven, place chocolate over top of dough and spread to form a thick layer
                                                                          -Sprinkle top of bars with nuts

                                                                          I love these because they're easy to mess around with and change up. Different flavored chocolate bars, subbing almond or maple extract for the vanilla, etc.

                                                                          1. re: mse924
                                                                            nami54 Dec 19, 2011 09:54 AM

                                                                            I don't know where your mom got her copy, but mine is from the newsletter P G & E (our power company here in the SF Bay area) used to put in everyone's bill. Mine dates to about 1980 or thereabouts.

                                                                            1. re: nami54
                                                                              masha Dec 19, 2011 10:08 AM

                                                                              Mine is handed down from my mother too, but it uses semi-sweet choc chips, not hershey's bars and white, not brown, sugar. Don't know where she got hers. I did see the recipe on a bag of nuts that I bought last year; can't recall what brand -- probably Fisher.

                                                                      2. Jennalynn Dec 11, 2011 09:20 AM

                                                                        My annual dessert open house is a week away. Not just cookies, but here's this years list:

                                                                        Mini Brownies with White Chocolate Ganache
                                                                        Red Velvet Whoopie Pies
                                                                        Rice Krispie Treats on a Stick
                                                                        Seven Layer Bars
                                                                        Butter Cookies
                                                                        Cherry Pistachio Biscotti
                                                                        Spice Cake Trifle
                                                                        The Kings Cupcakes (Elvis not the other one) Banana cake with Peanut Butter Frosting & Bacon Sprinkles
                                                                        Warm Apple Crumble
                                                                        Black Bottom Caramel Budino
                                                                        Carrot Cake Cookies
                                                                        Cranberry Tarts

                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                        1. re: Jennalynn
                                                                          roxlet Dec 12, 2011 10:36 AM

                                                                          What a great line up! I just added this cookie to my plans:
                                                                          They are supposed to taste just like cinnamon buns!

                                                                          1. re: roxlet
                                                                            Jennalynn Dec 12, 2011 03:59 PM

                                                                            That looks great! I might sprinkle the top with sanding sugar for some sparkle.

                                                                            It says to freeze for an hour. Do you think you could freeze for a few days? I might add this to my Sunday mix.

                                                                            1. re: Jennalynn
                                                                              roxlet Dec 12, 2011 05:41 PM

                                                                              I was definitely thinking of freezing it for a couple of weeks. I'm sure it would be fine.

                                                                          2. re: Jennalynn
                                                                            Tehama Feb 10, 2013 05:39 AM

                                                                            Hi! Do you have a link for the red velvet whoopie pie you could share? Thanks!

                                                                          3. v
                                                                            vafarmwife Dec 11, 2011 08:41 AM

                                                                            So far I have done three chip chocolate chip cookies, two batches of snickerdoodles, and oatmeal raisin. Next weekend I will make fruit cake cookies, sugar cookies, cherry winks, and will do chocolate pecan pie bars for a co-worker.

                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                            1. re: vafarmwife
                                                                              sisterfunkhaus Dec 11, 2011 09:11 AM

                                                                              I've done chocolate chip. Dh will make Mexican wedding cookies. Other than that, I do candy. That's my big thing.

                                                                              1. re: vafarmwife
                                                                                drewb123 Dec 12, 2011 10:40 PM

                                                                                would luv the recipe for choc pecan bars.

                                                                                1. re: drewb123
                                                                                  vafarmwife Dec 13, 2011 03:18 PM


                                                                                  1 3/4 cups flour

                                                                                  1/4 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark)

                                                                                  3/4 teaspoon salt

                                                                                  3/4 cup cold butter, cut into pieces

                                                                                  1-2 Tablespoons cold water


                                                                                  3 eggs

                                                                                  3/4 cup packed brown sugar

                                                                                  1/2 cup light corn syrup

                                                                                  2 teaspoons vanilla

                                                                                  2 Tablespoons butter, melted

                                                                                  1/2 teaspoon salt

                                                                                  2 cups pecan halves, coarsely chopped

                                                                                  3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

                                                                                  Heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line the bottom and sides of a 9"x13" baking pan with aluminum foil.

                                                                                  (For the crust) In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat 3/4 cup butter, brown sugar and salt until smooth and creamy. Add flour, and beat until coarse crumbs form. While the mixer is running, add 1-2 tablespoons of cold water, as needed to help form dough. Press dough into the bottom and 1/2 inch up the sides of the prepared pan. Prick the dough with a fork several times, randomly around the pan. Bake 10-12 minutes or until light golden brown.

                                                                                  (For the filling) In a large bowl, mix eggs, brown sugar, corn syrup, vanilla, melted butter, bourbon and salt with a whisk until well blended. Stir in pecans and chocolate chips. Pour filling into baked crust. Bake 20-30 minutes or until golden brown and filling is set. Cool completely before cutting.

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