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2012 Holiday Cookies

Hello, bakers and bakers-to-be! How about sharing your holiday cookie plans for 2012? I was reading this thread:


....and really became inspired!

I will choose from my following favorites, and maybe add a new one or two:

Coconut Macaroons
Almond Hazelnut Biscotti
Mexican Wedding Cakes
Almond Crescents
Cream Cheese Spritz
Chocolate Pecan Thumbprints
Browned Butter Pecan Shortbread
Almond Horns (or nuggets
Rainbow Venetians
Sacher Bites
Sarah Bernhardts
David Lebovitz’s Chocolate Biscotti
Christmas Logs
Victorian Ribbons
Lemon Thins

I might try a sbrisolona, which has been on my list for a while, and maybe the World Peace Cookies mentioned in the link above.

Also, I am going to try to do more savory baking, such as crackers, raincoast crisps, cheese straws, flavored nuts, etc.

And, as usual, my ambitions will exceed the time available and I will barely get my cookies into the mail (for distant family members) in time for the big dayl.

Please share your ideas!!

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  1. Gingerbread men
    Cut out sugar cookies
    Cranberry coconut cookies
    Carrot cookies (my dad's favorites)
    Candy cane cookies

    I'll probably add quite a few more. My daughter has nut allergies so I've had to eliminate the many nut-containing cookies from my rotation in recent years.

    Happy baking!

    5 Replies
      1. re: janehathaway

        Can you share or link to Carrot Cookies recipe? Or expound... they sound interesting...

        1. re: thursday

          I will find my recipe and post it. I think the original one came from the Betty Crocker cookbook. My daughter is allergic to eggs so I found a different recipe. The general idea is that you boil and mash carrots and they are stirred into a dough that's sort of drop sugar cookie-ish. Then they are frosted with an orange glaze. I'll post the recipe as soon as I can find it.

          1. re: janehathaway

            That sounds like a great recipe, and perfect for my niece who also has an egg (and dairy, the poor thing) allergy. I'd love the recipe as well when you have a chance to post it.

      2. Pepparkakor
        Minty Meringue Drops
        Peanutbutter Bonbons
        Snowy Mountaintops

        Plus a dozen or so new recipes for an Italian Wedding Cookie Cake that will be the centerpiece of my New Year's Day party.

        3 Replies
        1. re: JKDLady

          I keep reading about Snowy Mountaintops - what are they?

          1. re: sandylc

            Snowy mountaintops are my boys' favorites(13 and 15), although not mine. They are a chocolate cookie dough surrounding a Hershey's kiss in the shape of a triangle or mountain. After baking, the top is dipped in confectioners' sugar. I've yet to find a recipe that isn't too dry in the cookie part, but my boys insist every year, so I make them.

          2. re: JKDLady

            @jdkLady-can I ask how you make your pfeffernusse? They are a favorite, but I've never made them before

          3. Sandy, I'd love to see the recipe for your Chocolate Pecan Thumbprints.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Caitlin McGrath

              Chocolate Pecan Thumbprints

              Very rich and chocolatey.

              46 cookies

              2 cups unbleached flour
              1/4 t. salt
              6 T. unsweetened cocoa powder
              2 T. neutral oil
              1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
              1 cup granulated sugar
              2 large egg yolks (save the whites for a later step)
              2 t. vanilla extract
              2 cups pecans, very finely chopped
              2 large egg whites, lightly whisked

              8 oz. bittersweet (60%) chocolate (I use Ghirardelli)

              approximately 46 toasted pecan halves

              1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
              2.In a small bowl, stir together the cocoa and oil until thoroughly blended.
              3.In mixer bowl, beat the butter until creamy. Add the sugar and beat for 1-2 minutes. Add the yolks, one at a time, beating well after each. Blend in the vanilla and the cocoa mixture. Mix in the flour and salt just until blended.
              4.Place the chopped pecans in a small bowl and the whisked egg whites in another. Using a 1 1/4-inch scoop, make balls of dough, then roll each one between your palms before dipping it in the eggs whites. Let excess drip off, then roll the balls in the pecans. Rolls again in hands to make nuts adhere.
              5.Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet two inches apart. When the sheet is full, use a 1/2-teaspoon measuring spoon to make a very deep indention in each ball. There will be a bit of cracking around the edges; don't worry about it.
              6.Bake for about 12 minutes or until set. Remove cookies to a rack and cool thoroughly.
              7.Melt the chocolate by whatever method you prefer (double boiler or microwave). Using a tiny spoon, fill the indentions with a blob of goodness. Top with a pecan half. Let chocolate set.
              8.Cookies keep well in tins after the chocolate is set.

                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                  You're welcome....they're kind of putzy, but good for chocolate-lovers.

            2. I think I've settled on:

              1. Green Tea Shortbread (My recipe)
              2. Brown Sugar Thins (Brown Eyed Baker, but part of a larger recipe)
              3. Ginger Molasses (All Recipes, modified)

              1. Maple-Glazed Pecans (Tartine)
              2. Peppermint Bark (My "recipe")
              3. ??

              ?? = either sponge toffee, marshmallow, or caramels. I'm not sure yet.
              I may also break down and make one more cookie. Probably something chocolate. With coffee. Suggestions welcome!

              2 Replies
              1. re: jlunar

                Mocha macarons?

                And as for the ?? -- salted caramels would be kinda awesome.

                And yes, I'm being totally self-centered here. :)

                1. re: TorontoJo

                  LOL Jo! Duly noted... duly noted XD There will be some experimentation in the next couple of weeks!

              2. Planning on reducing the list this year, but must make:
                Rudolph peanut butter cookies
                Knockoff of Starbucks' Cranberry Bliss Bars (not really cookies, but hardly savory)
                Mexican wedding cookies
                Plus at least 1 more--will be scanning everyone's lists!

                1. Always have meringues, green christmas tree cookies from 1950s vintage mirro cookie press, viennese crescents, rugelach, and baseler brunsli (http://www.saveur.com/article/Recipes...). But then maybe also decorated sugar cookes, another chocolate-based one, a ginger shortbread?

                  1. I'm not a big cookie baker, but this is one of my all-time favorites:
                    I use any jam I have on hand, but the texture of the cookie is what sets this apart.

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: Terrie H.

                      Oooh. That looks pretty cool. Do you know how long it stays fresh after baking?

                      1. re: jlunar

                        I'm afraid I don't have any experience in keeping it very long. It only lasts a few days around here.

                        1. re: Terrie H.

                          Ha! A good recommendation for it at least. Worth a test-batch anyway. Thank you!

                      2. re: Terrie H.

                        Smitten kitchen has a recipe similar to this that I made last year - good but a bit of a pain. Her recipe is done in a 9x13 pan and definitely comes out thicker - may have to do a hybrid since I like the thinner but don't think I'll like the round

                        1. re: Bean Counter

                          It's pretty much the same one I think.. another one that I make every year, and grating is a big pain (also the frozen dough is alarmingly edible). I use my mother's raspberry chambord jam...

                        2. re: Terrie H.

                          Terrie, I make a couple of people a food gift for the Holiday Season and these look pefect for them.

                          But I have a couple of questions for you. On the reviews there are a couple of people who "freeze in logs and grate in their FP". It sounds interesting, but I'm a little confused. Do you roll the dough into logs, freeze it so it fits through the feed tube?

                          And there seems to be a little difference in what size pan is used. Did you do them in a 9 x 13 retangular baking pan?

                          Thanks ~


                          1. re: mcel215

                            When I make it, I use a 8x8 pan, which makes a thicker cookie than the traditional shortbread, but the grated dough makes it lighter textured, so I like it thicker. I'm sure it would go farther for your gifts if you used a 9 x 13, though, and probably easier to cut..

                            I just make a couple of oblongs of the dough to freeze since I use and box grater, but making it in a log to fit your processor's feeder tube sounds smart to me.

                            I hope you like them as much as I do. This is where I splurge on an interesting jam. Last year it was a Cherry-Chambourd, and this year I'm thinking of a fig-orange jam.

                            1. re: Terrie H.

                              Oh those jams sound great and great idea. I'll have to spluge on something too. Thanks again.


                        3. cookies

                          mocha logs
                          pecan tassies
                          pecan balls aka mexican wedding cookies
                          sugar cookies ( if I have time)


                          divinity ( if I have time and remember to get my mamas recipe)
                          peppermint bark

                          baked goods

                          gingerbread boy's ( yeast bread)
                          orange butter coffee cake

                          Those are our traditional treats we do most years. I'll probably add one or two new ones.

                          26 Replies
                          1. re: rasputina

                            Hm.. what are mocha logs Rasputina?

                            1. re: rstuart

                              it's a cookie press dough that shaped with the star tip into a long log shape and after baking the end is dipped in chocolate and rolled in chopped nuts. Our standard is semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate and walnuts. Not sure where my mom got the recipe but I grew up with these every Christmas.

                              1 cup butter
                              ¾ cup sugar
                              1 eggs
                              2 ¼ cups flour
                              1 teaspoon vanilla extract
                              2 tablespoons instant coffee powder
                              ½ teaspoon salt
                              ¼ teaspoon baking powder

                              mix ingredients together and put in cookie press with star tip. Press out long logs 3" on pan.
                              2. Bake 325 until light brown. Cool and then dip end in bittersweet chocolate and roll in walnuts.

                              1. re: rasputina

                                I love coffee in cookies.. adds such a great flavour! Thanks for the recipe..

                                1. re: rasputina

                                  These look great. I had great success using my cookie press last year, and really liked how efficient it was in making large batches, once I got the technique down. Think I'll add these to the mix.

                                  1. re: masha

                                    Does anyone recommend a particular press? I saw the Wilton (plastic) one recently and a fancier looking Crate and Barrel one.. any recommendations?

                                    1. re: GraceW

                                      I have an older imported metal one that I used for years. I decided one year to buy a newer one and bought a Wilton plastic one. It broke immediately. I exchanged it for a more expensive Wilton plastic one. It broke, also. Went back to the old metal one.

                                      These things did not break because I did something stupid like chilling the dough. I press a very soft dough, actually. They were cheaply made.

                                      1. re: sandylc

                                        I also bought a Wilton at BB&B and it broke on the first batch of cookies. The plastic just cracked. I returned it with the cookie dough still on it, but they were very accommodating. Now when I see dough presses, I just keep walking, once burned twice shy. Maybe someday I'll buy a metal one.

                                      2. re: GraceW

                                        I grew up using a metal one but when I had to buy my own all I could find was plastic. I've had a couple and now use a William's Sonoma one I've had for a few years that came in a metal box, I'm pretty sure it was made by Kuhn Rikon because it looks exactly like it.

                                        This dough is fairly stuff so it needs a decent cookie press.


                                        What I want is the cookie press attachment that you use with the meat grinder attachment for my verona assistent mixer. Just haven't bought it as I already have another meat grinder I'm using. It would be so nice to be hands free though and not have to hold the cookie press


                                        1. re: GraceW

                                          I've got my mother's Mirro press from the 1960s. Works fine once I got the hang of it. If you can find one at a garage sale with the plates (and ideally instruction booklet), I'd recommend it.

                                          1. re: masha

                                            I see them at estate sales sometimes. Probably a good place to look.

                                            1. re: masha

                                              @masha: is your Mirro press copper colored? Is it the kind where you twist the mechanism to extrude the cookie as opposed to a squeeze handle? My mother had one of those when I was a little kid in the 60s. In fact, I still have the recipe book that came with it. Great funky illustrations in it. What memories!

                                              1. re: ttoommyy

                                                The press is dual colored -- mostly a silver color with copper on the bands on both the top & bottom pieces that twist in. It does have the twist, rather than lever, mechanism. I too have the booklet, which is quite useful in terms of reminding me how to position the press when making the cookies. But, I use the Wilton recipe rather than the recipes in the booklet.

                                            2. re: GraceW

                                              I just got the new Oxo press, and I love it. Very few cookies failed (only the first one each time I refilled the tube), and I love how exact it is. Also, I love that it come with a little plastic case that holds all the discs. As soon as I used it the first time, I tossed the other one I had.

                                                1. re: coll

                                                  chefcentral.com, but I believe they have it on Amazon.

                                                  1. re: roxlet

                                                    Thanks, I have an Amazon list started already anyway!

                                          2. re: rasputina

                                            Rasputina, when you dip the cookies in bittersweet chocolate, do you just melt the chocolate or do you make a sweetened glaze? (I typically dip my regular spritz cookies in a semi-sweet chocolate glaze.)

                                            1. re: masha

                                              Bitteresweet chocolate IS sweetened. It just has more chocolate in it.

                                              1. re: sandylc

                                                Yes, I realize that. I should have asked whether she added any more sugar to be precise.

                                              2. re: masha

                                                We have always just melted the chocolate and dipped and then rolled the dipped end in chopped nuts. I'm not sure if a glaze would hold the nuts on as well.

                                              3. re: rasputina

                                                Rasputina, I made these over the weekend and frankly was a bit disappointed. Part of the problem is just my lack of manual dexterity, but I could not get the "logs" to lay down perfectly straight. They all had some squiqqles to they looked more like worms, than logs. I finally switched to wreaths.

                                                Also, they seemed to be a bit thin, and did not "puff" up much when they baked. Is 1/4 tsp baking powder accurate?

                                                1. re: masha

                                                  Sorry I didn't your post before now. Yes 1/4 teaspoon is accurate. No they don't raise a lot. They are fairly dense. The issue with squiggling lines is just lack of practice but it helps if you rest your elbow on the table to add stability. I just use my fingers to straighten them if needed. As far as being thin, were you possibly using a star tip for an icing piping bag? I've always used the star disk that looks like this:


                                                  They are about an inch wide when cooked I'd say.

                                                  1. re: rasputina

                                                    Rasputina, thanks for getting back (if a bit belated!). I use the star tip that came with my 1960's era Mirro press. I'll bookmark this post and may try again next Christmas.

                                                    1. re: masha

                                                      That's the same press my mom used when we were kids to make these cookies.

                                                      1. re: rasputina

                                                        The press was my mother's. She gave it to me years ago and for a long time it just sat in the box. I started using it about 5 years ago as part of an annual holiday cookie baking blitz. It has a butterfly shaped plate that I might use to make some spring themed cookies over the next week or so.

                                                        1. re: masha

                                                          I love all the different shapes the Mirro press came with. I've actually considered buying one on ebay. I'm not sure if my mom even has hers anymore. I took over the duties of making these cookies over 20 years ago.

                                          3. These Lemon Tassies have caught my attention
                                            Not really cookies (?) but I first found them in a Martha Stewart cookie magazine. Pretty sure I'll be making these between now and the new year.

                                            16 Replies
                                            1. re: blue room

                                              Mmm, looks great, especially with the lemons on our tree starting to turn yellow! I've used lemon
                                              curd before for a similar filling, but it looks like that filling would bake up better.

                                              I like using a flower cutter to make my crusts. Easy, fast, and cute.

                                              1. re: modthyrth

                                                Sweet! Or should I say ... Tart! :)

                                                1. re: modthyrth

                                                  That is adorable! Are they in a mini muffin pan?

                                                  1. re: thursday

                                                    Exactly, thursday. Mini muffin tin, just like most tassies recipes call for. You'll need a bigger flower cutter than you think!

                                                    1. re: modthyrth

                                                      Do you use anything to press the crust into the pan, or more importantly, to get them out when baked? With normal mini tarts, I just sort of plop a hunk of dough in and work it up the sides, and to get them out I cut around the edges with a knife and pop them out, but that would break off all the petals with these... These are so cute they're first on my list to bake this year!

                                                      1. re: thursday

                                                        I used a pretty buttery dough (once I used my favorite sugar cookie cut-out dough, in fact), and I've never had a problem with the cookies not coming out. I do let them cool completely in the pan so that they're more sturdy when I remove them. I'm sure a little spray of cake release couldn't do any harm!

                                                        I just coax the dough down by pushing it with my fingers. Nothing fancy.

                                                        1. re: thursday

                                                          If you have difficulty getting dough out of the pans, try using Wilton Fast Release, which is really infallible.

                                                    2. re: modthyrth

                                                      Thanks for sharing this awesome idea, I'm helping my 19 year old sister in law make them (today!) for a party at her work tonight. They're terribly cute. :)

                                                      1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                        I solved the problem of how to get them into the mini muffin pan by using liners. I kind of flattened out the liner, put it over the dough, flipped it and pressed the circle in the middle into the shape of the bottom of the liner and then held the top together as I eased it into the pan. Each one took about 30 seconds and none stuck, of course, because of the liner.

                                                        I used a smaller cutter than I would have liked since I wasn't sure longer petals would survive an almost 50 mile drive in the back seat of a 19 year old girl's car on the way there. :)

                                                        1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                          Clever! Thanks for sharing--I'm definitely trying this next time! I didn't have much trouble popping mine out, but making things better/easier/more efficient is always a good idea. ;-)

                                                    3. re: blue room

                                                      Alright, so has anyone made these? Feel free to break this into a new thread if necessary, mods, but I'm trying to make them now and the dough isn't a dough...it's just sand. One measly egg yolk doesn't seem enough to moisten the whole batch, and I can't even come close to being able to form them into the balls in the original recipe, much less roll out and cut like I was hoping to do...any pointers?

                                                      1. re: thursday

                                                        And it's a MS recipe....what a surprise. Can you just distribute the crumbs among the muffin cups and press them into place - if they will stick together, this might work.

                                                        1. re: sandylc

                                                          They don't even come close to sticking together...maybe I could add another egg yolk since my eggs are a little smallish, but I think that would make it too eggy...

                                                          1. re: thursday

                                                            I'd just dribble in a bit of cream, milk, or even water until you can squeeze a bit of dough together and it sticks. I see in the reviews that everyone says there's too much filling, and one reviewer says that in the MS book, there are twice the crust ingredients to the same filling.

                                                            1. re: thursday

                                                              You could add vodka or water, but chances are fair that you are going to overwork your dough by adding something else after it has been mixed. To try to avoid this you could spread out the crumbs and mist on vodka or water with a clean sprayer. You should perhaps begin again with a different press-in shortcrust recipe.

                                                        2. re: blue room

                                                          blue, am I reading this MS recipe correctly about the candy lemon rind?
                                                          it's only for decoration right?
                                                          if that's the case, I don't really need to make that as I'd be making these for cookies for cookie baskets for Christmas gifts. a piece of candied lemon rind would be a nuisance thinking of how to pack it up in there if it's not even part of the recipe. sorry babbling, thinking in print.

                                                        3. I love this time of year :)

                                                          Gingerbread people
                                                          Sugar cookies
                                                          Chocolate peppermint crinkle cookies
                                                          Finnish Christmas stars
                                                          some sort of thumbprint cookie

                                                          Christmas saffron bread
                                                          Maybe some pulla or cardamom coffee cake or korvapuusti

                                                          11 Replies
                                                          1. re: CocoaChanel

                                                            <waving hand madly> "Christmas saffron bread"--my 3 favorite words in one recipe! Will you share the recipe?

                                                            1. re: pine time

                                                              Hi Pine Time,

                                                              I use this recipe - I have found it works for me. (Please note, I have no affiliation with this organization; I don't even live in this city - i just use the recipe :) )


                                                              1. re: CocoaChanel

                                                                Thanks, Cocoa. We're to have a cool and rainy weekend, so these will be a perfect menu addition. I have tons of Kashmiri saffron from relatives in India, so they'll be put to good use. Appreciate your help! P.S. How do you eat them--with tea as a snack or sweet enough for dessert??

                                                                1. re: pine time

                                                                  As a breakfast pastry (warmed with a little butter) with tea or coffee. Or just as a snack (with tea/coffee)

                                                              2. re: pine time

                                                                Can I share my family's Saffron Brod recipe with you? This came from a Swedish family friend sometime in the '70s and I have yet to see it on the Internet.

                                                                Saffron Brod

                                                                > INGREDIENTS:

                                                                1 ¼ cups milk
                                                                ½ cup sugar
                                                                1 ½ tsp salt
                                                                1/8 tsp saffron threads
                                                                2 packages yeast
                                                                ½ cup warm water
                                                                5 cups white flour (will be divided)
                                                                ½ cup melted butter
                                                                1 lightly beaten egg

                                                                2/3 cup sugar
                                                                1/3 cup white flour
                                                                1/3 cup butter, slightly softened
                                                                1/2 cup almond paste (not marzipan, which is sweeter)
                                                                1 egg
                                                                1 egg yolk (reserve white)

                                                                > Directions: Scald the milk and pour it into a bowl. Add sugar, salt, and
                                                                > saffron and stir.

                                                                > Mix yeast and ½ cup warm water and wait till it foams up.

                                                                > When milk mixture is lukewarm, stir in yeast, then add 3 cups of the
                                                                > flour and mix to make a smooth batter. Let stand 20 minutes. Then add egg
                                                                > and melted butter. Add approximately 2 cups more of flour (note that
                                                                > dough should be slightly sticky—be careful not to add too much flour)
                                                                > and knead till dough is smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl and
                                                                > allow to rise in a warm place till double (45 minutes to an hour).

                                                                > To make filling, mix 2/3 c sugar, 1/3 c white flour, 1/3 c butter, and ½ c almond paste together till mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Reserve ½ cup. Mix 1 egg and 1 egg yolk into the rest.

                                                                > After dough has risen, punch it down and divide it into 4 parts. Roll 1
                                                                > part into a 15" x 9" rectangle. Spread with approx. 1/3 scant cup of
                                                                > filling (use the part with the eggs mixed in). Roll up into a jellyroll
                                                                > shape and seal carefully, using your fingers to pinch the dough together
                                                                > along the seams and at both ends. Repeat for remaining 3 parts.

                                                                > Place 1 roll onto a greased baking sheet in an S shape. Place another
                                                                > roll over it in a backwards S shape (this very vaguely resembles a
                                                                > swastika—sorry, don't know how else to explain it). Repeat with second
                                                                > baking sheet and second 2 rolls. Brush breads with reserved egg white
                                                                > thinned with 1 tsp water. Take reserved topping and sprinkle on in small
                                                                > clumps, adhering it gently to the surface of the dough. Let rise till
                                                                > double. Bake in 325 degree oven for approximately 40-45 minutes, watching
                                                                > carefully for overbrowning.

                                                                1. re: loraxc

                                                                  Hey Loraxc - I've been meaning to make that bread and post it this year. Ok by you? Due credit of course. :)

                                                                  1. re: Savour

                                                                    Yes, absolutely! It came out a little dry when you tried it before, though, right? It CAN be temperamental and I don't know why. Err on the side of wet for the dough, although it makes it harder to work with. Also, it's very important to seal the dough rolls as well as possible, although this is a pain, or you lose filling. And it's easy to overbake as well, especially on the bottom. Basically, the recipe is a diva, but boy, do we love it.

                                                                    1. re: loraxc

                                                                      Have you ever tried adding a little baking powder to the dough? I might play with proportions a teeny bit (though not the filling, which was awesome)

                                                              3. re: CocoaChanel

                                                                Do you have a recipe for korvapuutsi you might share, CocoaChanel? I fell in love with these in Helsinki a few years back. An acquaintance gave me a recipe but the proportions were off. I just tried a recipe I found online from the "Falling CLoudberries" cookbook. They are in the oven but the dough still didnt seem right.

                                                                1. re: ziggylu

                                                                  Hi Ziggylu,

                                                                  Here is a link - scroll down for the recipe


                                                                  I have the cookbook referenced, this recipe in the link should not disappoint - the cook book one does not. Enjoy!

                                                                  1. re: CocoaChanel

                                                                    THanks, CocoaChanel. The batch yesterday didn't turn out great...too much flour and I realized it too late. I'll try this recipe next week!

                                                              4. My list has a number of reoccurring items on it:

                                                                Apricot Foldovers
                                                                Lemon Stars
                                                                Champagnebrod- a press cookie filled with apricot jam
                                                                Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti
                                                                Macadamia Lime cookies
                                                                gingerbread people for the half eaten cookie cutters a warped friend gave me

                                                                candied orange, lemon & grapefruit rind
                                                                caramel corn (vats!!!)
                                                                almond buttercrunch
                                                                white chocolate, pistachio craisin bark

                                                                I need a couple of new cookies- at least one chocolate something. Also will probably do a chocolate bark. Last year I did one with smoked paprika in it.

                                                                18 Replies
                                                                  1. re: sandylc

                                                                    Thanks. I couldn't do as many as you do but I would like to one day. After I quit the job that requires 18 hours of commuting a week.

                                                                  2. re: AGM_Cape_Cod

                                                                    Would you be willing to share your caramel corn recipe?

                                                                    1. re: GraceW

                                                                      Sure I will post it when I get home tonight. I multiply it by 8 or so and bake it in the big aluminum foil roasting pans. We give it to all the teachers that my husband works with in addition to the rest of the people who get the cookies & candies.

                                                                      1. re: GraceW

                                                                        Sorry I didn't get to this last night.
                                                                        Makes about 6 to 7 cups

                                                                        2 quarts (8 cups) freshly popped corn
                                                                        1/2 cup raw, shelled, and skinless peanuts, preferably the small Spanish ones
                                                                        1/4 cup (firmly packed) light brown sugar
                                                                        3 tablespoons unsalted butter
                                                                        1/4 cup light corn syrup
                                                                        1/4 cup light molasses
                                                                        1/2 teaspoon salt
                                                                        1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
                                                                        1/4 teaspoon baking soda

                                                                        I use an airpopper for the popcorn.
                                                                        Once the corn is popped put it and the peanuts in a large greased roasting pan. I use a spray like Pam. It should be big enough to turn the corn without it escaping. Preheat oven to 250 degrees

                                                                        In a heavy saucepan (I use a Le Creuset round dutch oven) combine the sugar, butter, corn syrup, molasses, and salt. Stir while the butter and sugar melt over medium heat. Let come to a slow boil and cook until a candy thermometer reads 250 degrees. Remove from heat and add the baking soda and vanilla extract. Watch out it will splatter a litte.

                                                                        Ladle over the corn and toss with a buttered spatula until all the corn is coated. Bake for an hour. I take it out in the middle and toss it again so that any of the caramel on the bottom gets brought up onto the corn & nuts.

                                                                        Let cool and then break into chunks.

                                                                      2. re: AGM_Cape_Cod

                                                                        I can tell you that the apricot foldovers have become a favorite with my family, thanks to you AGM!

                                                                        Happy Holidays!

                                                                        1. re: jencounter

                                                                          Glad to hear that jencounter. Over the past year I was asked to bake cookies for my nephews' weddings. One they particularly asked for was the apricot foldovers. Due to time constraints I formed and filled the cookies and froze them unbaked. When I baked them they were great. Just an FYI!

                                                                          1. re: AGM_Cape_Cod

                                                                            Ooooh, really? I've made and frozen the dough in advance, but never formed and frozen. I need a larger freezer!

                                                                            1. re: AGM_Cape_Cod

                                                                              Mmm, was that apricot foldover recipe posted somewhere and I just missed it? Sounds right up my alley!

                                                                                1. re: jencounter

                                                                                  Yum, thank you! They look fabulous.

                                                                          2. re: AGM_Cape_Cod

                                                                            I have to cut down in a major way this year but Lemon Stars will always be included in the rotation.

                                                                            1. re: AGM_Cape_Cod

                                                                              I made the apricot foldovers this week--YUM! Those are definitely getting made again. Thanks so much for sharing!

                                                                              1. re: modthyrth

                                                                                I am still baking but so far I have given away 63 dozen cookies:
                                                                                lemon stars
                                                                                candied orange & pecan biscotti
                                                                                apricot foldovers
                                                                                macadamia lime cookies
                                                                                dried cherry & pistachio cookies
                                                                                chocolate bon bon

                                                                                as well as 6 gallons of caramel corn, candied rinds-orange, lemon & grapefruit, white chocolate craisin pistachio bark, almond buttercrunch and pumpkin seed, mango & chili dark chocolate bark.

                                                                                1. re: AGM_Cape_Cod

                                                                                  I want to give you my yearly thank you for the Lemon Star cookie recipe; even though I "only" made 7 types that was one of them.

                                                                                  1. re: coll

                                                                                    Thanks! I am glad that you have made them a holiday tradition too. My DH thinks of them solely as a vehicle for lemon curd.

                                                                                  2. re: AGM_Cape_Cod

                                                                                    63 dozen!!! Phew.. now I feel positively restrained ;)

                                                                                  3. re: modthyrth

                                                                                    Thanks modthyth, glad you liked the foldovers. They are a favorite in my family.

                                                                                    I can't get this to link to your comment above. :(

                                                                                2. I'm only making some red velvet cookies and these chocolate cookies with roasted walnuts, semi sweet chocolate chips, marshmallows, and chocolate drizzle. People paid me to make them for their holiday parties last year. I made a few hundred dollars.

                                                                                  1. Making French Macarons this year. Maybe some Hermits too.

                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                    1. My mom and I will likely bake:

                                                                                      Russian tea cakes - http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2006/1...
                                                                                      Peanut butter blossoms - not my favorite at all, but everyone expects them
                                                                                      Vanilla slices - from Beatrice Ojakangas's Great Old-Fashioned American Desserts
                                                                                      Chocolate haystacks
                                                                                      Oreo truffles - one package Oreos and 8 oz cream cheese whizzed in the food processor, rolled into balls, dipped in melted chocolate. I should hate these, but I can't.
                                                                                      Lemon ricotta - http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/gi... - these are always a major hit
                                                                                      Sugar cookies with sprinkles
                                                                                      Chocolate cookies - not sure what they're actually called, but they call for a can of sweetened condensed milk, and they taste like tootsie rolls

                                                                                      And we'll probably make pizzelle with my Italian grandma.

                                                                                      14 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: ShinyCake

                                                                                        Chocolate cookies with a can of condensed milk sound good..

                                                                                        1. re: rstuart

                                                                                          There was a Bake-Off winner in about 1995 that consisted of a chocolate cookie dough made with condensed milk molded around a Hershe's Kiss but I'm darned if I can find it.

                                                                                        2. re: ShinyCake

                                                                                          The chocolate cookies with condensed milk sound interesting. Can you please share the recipe?

                                                                                          Also, I am going to try the Oreo truffles. They sound interesting and unlike anything I've ever made. I don't think I will tell anyone the ingredients until they try one.

                                                                                          Thanks in advance!

                                                                                          1. re: JKDLady

                                                                                            The Oreo truffles work best if you freeze the Oreo/cream cheese balls before dipping into chocolate.

                                                                                            I'll post the recipe for the chocolate cookies, but it might take a while. I have to get it from my mom's recipe box.

                                                                                            1. re: JKDLady

                                                                                              I've made the Oreo truffles.. very messy, and very rich.. but also very good! I wish that I'd know to freeze them.. good idea.

                                                                                              1. re: JKDLady

                                                                                                Here's the recipe for the chocolate cookies:

                                                                                                4 Tbsp butter
                                                                                                18 oz chocolate chips
                                                                                                2 small cans sweetened condensed milk (Eagle)
                                                                                                2 cups flour
                                                                                                1 tsp vanilla

                                                                                                Melt chocolate and butter in double-boiler. Stir in sweetened condensed milk. Stir in flour. Let cool a while then roll dough into small balls, about a teaspoon in size. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet (they really stick to a bare pan), flatten slightly, bake at 325 degrees F for 10-12 minutes.

                                                                                                1. re: ShinyCake

                                                                                                  I love tootsie rolls, so I suspect that I would love these.. thanks for sharing! How many do these make?

                                                                                                  1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                    I can't remember for sure. Quite a lot, though, mostly because we make them teeny-tiny.

                                                                                                    1. re: ShinyCake

                                                                                                      Yes.. looks like it. So perfect for holiday baking, really..

                                                                                                  2. re: ShinyCake

                                                                                                    Thank you! I can't wait to try these.

                                                                                                      1. re: ShinyCake

                                                                                                        These do look really good! Question: When you say "small" cans of Eagle Brand milk, what size (ounces) are you speaking of? I seem to remember really small ones long ago; but now only see one size in the stores.....

                                                                                                        1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                          It's just the standard size. 14 oz. I believe.

                                                                                                  3. I'm still looking for ideas. Was thinking of a mincemeat rugelach this year ...

                                                                                                    1. Chocolate Crinkle Cookies!

                                                                                                      They always come out perfectly sized!

                                                                                                      1/2 cup powdered sugar
                                                                                                      1 2/3 cups all purpose flour
                                                                                                      1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
                                                                                                      1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
                                                                                                      1/4 teaspoon salt
                                                                                                      8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
                                                                                                      1 1/4 cups white sugar
                                                                                                      2 large eggs
                                                                                                      1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

                                                                                                      1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease 2 baking sheets with butter or use parchment paper.
                                                                                                      2. Put the powdered sugar into a bowl and set aside.
                                                                                                      3. In a medium bowl, using a wooden spoon, stir together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
                                                                                                      4. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until creamy, about 3 minutes.
                                                                                                      5. Turn off the mixture and scrape down sides. Add 1 egg and beat on medium speed until blended. Add the other egg and vanilla and beat until blended.
                                                                                                      6. Turn off the mixer and add the flour mixture. Beat on low speed until just blended.
                                                                                                      7. Using a tablespoon, scoop up a rounded spoonful of dough.
                                                                                                      8. Roll dough into a ball using your hands and roll the ball in the powdered sugar until covered.
                                                                                                      9. Place the balls on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat, spacing the balls 1-2 inches apart.
                                                                                                      10. Bake until the cookies are cracked and puffed, about 10-12 minutes.
                                                                                                      11. Let cookies cool on the baking sheet for 15 minutes.
                                                                                                      12. Using a spatula, move the cookies onto the rack and let cool completely.

                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                      1. re: limonay

                                                                                                        I make these every year. Pretty sure the recipe is from the Betty Crocker cookbook :)

                                                                                                      2. I don't make all cookies, but a combination of cookies & chocolate dipped things:

                                                                                                        Peppermint Oreos dipped in chocolate
                                                                                                        Chocolate dipped pretzels
                                                                                                        Maple PB bacon fudge
                                                                                                        Pretzel potato chip chocolate chip cookies
                                                                                                        Something lemon
                                                                                                        Brownies (usually 1 bite)
                                                                                                        Mini cupcakes (usually spice or red velvet)

                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: jenscats5

                                                                                                          Ugh Snickerdoodles. Everyone loves them but one year I made 75 dozen for my boyfriend to send out for chistmas client gifts. (I was unemployed at the time so could.) All that rolling and then rolling in cinnamin and sugar my hands were so cracked when they were done! Never again! Gah!

                                                                                                          Some how the 25 dozen of the double chocolate chip cookie didn't burn me out.

                                                                                                          1. re: Crockett67

                                                                                                            Try the snickerdoodle blondies recipe from Brown Eyed Baker! It's absolutely amazing, and so much less fussy than making individual sugar cookies.


                                                                                                            I'm not even usually a big fan of snickerdoodles but these things are *amazing*.

                                                                                                            1. re: modthyrth

                                                                                                              Oooo the blondies look great!! Very different!

                                                                                                        2. Scottish shortbread - for my SO
                                                                                                          Chocolate dipped oreos/nutter butters - Because they disappear so quickly
                                                                                                          Monster cookies - reliving childhood

                                                                                                          1. My gift plates are going to include:

                                                                                                            Cranberry Bliss Bars (a knockoff of Startucks' version)
                                                                                                            Santa’s Hairy Balls (okay, the recipe says "Rice Krispie Date Nut Cookies" but we never call them that)
                                                                                                            Thumbprint Cookies (an oldie of my mother's, the only one I make every year, without fail)
                                                                                                            Glittering Lemon Sandwich Cookies
                                                                                                            Chocolate Fudge
                                                                                                            Fleur de Sel Caramels

                                                                                                            Most of these are recipes I've made before, except the fudge. I've always done the marshmallow creme recipe, but I'm going to attempt the old-fashioned cooked version this time. I'm also tinkering with the Glittering Lemon Sandwich Cookies--after getting some good advice on another thread, I'm going to sub rice flour for the cornstarch.

                                                                                                            Sometime between now and the end of December, I'll probably also be making

                                                                                                            Grammercy Tavern Gingerbread Cake
                                                                                                            mince tarts
                                                                                                            popcorn balls
                                                                                                            something fiddly and complicated and impressive for Christmas dinner--probably a cake or torte of some kind

                                                                                                            9 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: MsMaryMc

                                                                                                              I've made knockoff cranberry bliss bars a few years in a row.. really good!

                                                                                                              1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                Do you mind sharing the recipe you have used. My mom loves them, but I've never had one so I am having a hard time trying to figure out which recipe to try. TIA.

                                                                                                                1. re: cheesymama

                                                                                                                  I'll take a look through my files.. I have a habit of clipping several and then not remembering which one I used! This was definitely one of them:

                                                                                                                  1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                    Your recipe is very close to mine. Mine uses all brown sugar in the cake, and adds some candied ginger. The drizzle for the top is different, too--but generally pretty similar.

                                                                                                                    Cranberry Bliss Bars

                                                                                                                    1 cup butter , softened
                                                                                                                    1-1/4 cups light brown sugar, packed
                                                                                                                    3 eggs
                                                                                                                    1-1/2 tsp. vanilla or orange extract
                                                                                                                    1 tsp. ground ginger
                                                                                                                    1/4 tsp. salt
                                                                                                                    1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
                                                                                                                    3/4 cup diced dried cranberries
                                                                                                                    6 ounces white chocolate, cut into chunks
                                                                                                                    2 Tablespoon candied ginger, minced

                                                                                                                    4 ounces cream cheese, softened
                                                                                                                    3 cups powdered sugar
                                                                                                                    4 tsp. orange juice
                                                                                                                    1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
                                                                                                                    1/4 cup diced dried cranberries

                                                                                                                    Drizzled Icing
                                                                                                                    2 ounces white chocolate
                                                                                                                    1/4 tsp. shortening

                                                                                                                    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

                                                                                                                    Beat butter and brown sugar until smooth. Add eggs, vanilla, ginger, and salt; beat well. Gradually mix in flour until smooth. Mix 3/4 cup diced dried cranberries, white chocolate, and candied ginger into the batter by hand.

                                                                                                                    Pour batter into a well-greased 9 x 13-inch baking pan and spread evenly. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until cake is light brown on the edges. Let cool.

                                                                                                                    Frosting: Combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, lemon juice and vanilla with an electric mixer until smooth.

                                                                                                                    When the cake has cooled, spread frosting over the top of cake. Sprinkle top with diced cranberries.

                                                                                                                    Icing: Melt the white chocolate and shortening in a Ziploc bag on low heat in the microwave. Cut a small hole in the corner of the Ziploc bag and drizzle chocolate over the top of the cake.

                                                                                                                    Allow cake to sit for several hours, then slice the cake lengthwise through the middle. Slice the cake across the width three times making a total of eight rectangular slices. Slice each of those rectangles diagonally, creating 16 triangular slices.

                                                                                                                    1. re: MsMaryMc

                                                                                                                      Yumm... great to get another recipe for this!

                                                                                                                      1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                        OK, I tried another recipe.. this one from serious eats:
                                                                                                                        So far pretty good. However, I like the look of the extra dried cranberries and OJ in yours.. I"ll try it when I next have the opportunity to bake them!

                                                                                                                      2. re: MsMaryMc

                                                                                                                        Hmm, MsMaryMc, I think mine's like yours, minus the shortening in the glaze. (I always make at least double the amt of glaze, cause I love it)

                                                                                                                        1. re: MsMaryMc

                                                                                                                          Thanks. I made this recipe yesterday for my Mom and she declared them better than the Starbucks version.

                                                                                                                          1. re: cheesymama

                                                                                                                            Glad to hear! The Cranberry Bliss Bars actually got bumped off my list in favor of a Polish Mazurka fruit bar that I just had to try. But I knew I had them on the list initially for a good reason!

                                                                                                                2. I tend to make complicated things.. so this year I am adding these stupid-easy cookies to make with an eager little-kid who wants to help.

                                                                                                                  Magic Kiss Cookies

                                                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: GraceW

                                                                                                                    I recently found a recipe on a blog (can't remember which one!) for a biscoff variation.. which sounded great.

                                                                                                                    1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                      Crikey, this is the one I mentioned above!

                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                        Are they good? I haven't made them.. but I am planning on it. Let me know, if you get a chance.

                                                                                                                        1. re: GraceW

                                                                                                                          They're quite good. The condensed milk taste isdiscernable, which is a positive or negative thing, depending on your opinion of the stuff.

                                                                                                                    2. Every year we absolutely must have:
                                                                                                                      Creme de menthe bars
                                                                                                                      russian tea cakes
                                                                                                                      cranberry pistachio biscotti

                                                                                                                      And I always like to try at least a couple new recipes. I'm drooling over all the ideas in this thread.

                                                                                                                      A new one that we'll be adding to the permanent collection this year is an Italian biscotti recipe. But not the crunchy, twice-baked coffee shop version. A pillowy, pink, soft version my friend's mom used to make growing up (her grandmother's recipe). I have the recipe now! They're so simple, but absolutely delicious.

                                                                                                                      And 100ish gingerbread houses, of course. It wouldn't be Christmas without Operation Gingerbread at our house!

                                                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                                                      1. re: modthyrth

                                                                                                                        Wow.. pink! What makes them pink?

                                                                                                                          1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                            Zappanti Family Biscotti

                                                                                                                            Heat oven to 350

                                                                                                                            These cookies MUST BE ICED AS THEY COME OUT OF THE OVEN, so stage your baking accordingly. Ignore your convection function. Only bake one tray at a time. It's nice to have an extra set of hands to help you ice the cookies while they're still warm.

                                                                                                                            Beat together well:
                                                                                                                            5 eggs, beaten
                                                                                                                            1 1/2 cups white sugar
                                                                                                                            3 sticks room temperature butter

                                                                                                                            1 T vanilla
                                                                                                                            5 t baking powder
                                                                                                                            1 t almond extract
                                                                                                                            1 t salt
                                                                                                                            2 cups milk

                                                                                                                            Add 6-8 cups of flour (go by feel here, I'll try to describe what you're looking for. I use closer to 6 than 8 cups, but I'm in oh-so-arid Arizona.) Add 6 cups of flour, then add a half a cup at a time until desired consistency is reached. Dough should not be sticky, and should be just barely firm enough to pinch off pieces and roll into ropes.

                                                                                                                            Pinch of a piece of dough and roll between your hands or on a floured surface until you have a rope about an inch in diameter. Cut into 1 1/2" pieces. Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet for 15-20 minutes, until lightly golden on bottom. Do not overcook. The tops will stay pale, but they will be done.

                                                                                                                            Ice immediately while still warm and place on cookie racks to cool.

                                                                                                                            Makes about 9-10 dozen small cookies. Store in an airtight container. Freezes well (put in container lined with foil, fold foil over cookies, and seal container well).

                                                                                                                            1 1/2 sticks room temp. butter
                                                                                                                            1/2 t Vanilla
                                                                                                                            2lb powdered sugar
                                                                                                                            evaporated milk to thin.

                                                                                                                            Cream butter and vanilla, add powdered sugar to achieve a thick and creamy consistency. Add evaporated milk by the teaspoon to keep a creamy, spreadable icing. This icing is traditionally colored a pale pink with food coloring.

                                                                                                                            The icing melts over the warm cookies, creating this pink glaze shell. It's hard to say why these simple little cookies are so good, but oh man, they really are!

                                                                                                                          2. I haven't decided on every cookie yet. In addition to my tried and true, I like to try a few new ones every year. I give a ton away as gifts. I'm probably going to add another non-chocolate, non-nut recipe. I've done fruit bars in the past, looking for something different.

                                                                                                                            Pix from last year:

                                                                                                                            1. Chocolate Almond Lace Cookies (a/k/a Florentines). This is my signature cookie, a huge favorite. Easy to make, a bit of a prima dona to bake because they spread. Here is a link to the recipe which also contains a step by step slideshow.

                                                                                                                            2. Space Dust Cookies - This was a new one last year, very well received. Got the recipe from CH. Basically a butter cookie - I add a cocoa roasted almond in the middle.

                                                                                                                            3. Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookies. If I have the time, I further finish with melted white chocolate lines across the top.

                                                                                                                            4. Word of Mouth Lemon Bars - like pecan pie with lemon.

                                                                                                                            5. Peanut Butter Cup Cookies.

                                                                                                                            6. Chocolate Crunch Cookies. It's good to have a no bake cookie in the mix. Easy for kids to help make.

                                                                                                                            7. Pizzelles.

                                                                                                                            8. Mini Gingerbread Whoopie Pies with Lemon Cream Filling. New last year, not sure I am going to bother with them this year.

                                                                                                                            9. Gooey Mixed Nut Bars. I had a jar of mixed nuts I needed to use up. Found this recipe and bam, they were a gooey hit.

                                                                                                                            10. Peanut Blossoms. My daughter travels here for Christmas. Not a lot of time to bake but she cranks these out every year.

                                                                                                                            11. Boxes of cookies ready to go.

                                                                                                                            19 Replies
                                                                                                                            1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                              They look wonderful!!
                                                                                                                              I feel inspired to make the Florentines! :-)

                                                                                                                              1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                What a stunning assortment of cookies Trish. Lucky Santa!

                                                                                                                                1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                  Beautiful pictures. Thanks for the inspiration!

                                                                                                                                  1. re: JKDLady

                                                                                                                                    Jumping in if I may...I am new to holiday cookie baking, and this will be my first year!

                                                                                                                                    Planning tentatively-
                                                                                                                                    Chocolate crinkle cookies (as mentioned above)
                                                                                                                                    Gingerbread cookies from smitten kitchen

                                                                                                                                    And a third cookie...not sure what yet...

                                                                                                                                    I'm wondering though - how does everyone feel about making cookies by hand that call for a stand mixer? I don't have one, won't be getting one anytime soon...

                                                                                                                                    I'm excited to begin next week! :)

                                                                                                                                      1. re: lovessushi

                                                                                                                                        I have done it--put the bowl on the floor, hold one end of the wooden spoon, and run around like hell. We believe in you: you can make it happen--even without a stand-mixer.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: GraceW

                                                                                                                                          LOLOL! Grace, I am picturing this - ! ;-)

                                                                                                                                        2. re: lovessushi

                                                                                                                                          Lovessuhi, good for you for jumping in the cookie fray! A lot of the cookies I make don't require a mixer. You can make pretty much any cookie without one if you want. What flavor are you interested in for a third cookie?

                                                                                                                                          1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                            @coll - lol - well I am trying to lose weight and build muscle...lol @Grace - lol!! Thanks for the support...I love that you've done it! @Trish - thanks! Good to know...I'm not sure - I was thinking something "ethnic" maybe? Like pfeffernuse (bad bad spelling), or maybe rugelach, which are for another holiday, but that's ok... kind of limited with everything in terms of equipment and finance right now, so trying to figure out the thing I can make that I'll like, is feasible, and won't require buying a madeline pan or something -lol

                                                                                                                                            1. re: lovessushi

                                                                                                                                              Lovesushi.. you may not need a stand mixer, but you can get hand mixers fairly inexpensively, and I personally feel that they're worth it! Just my opinion though... my arm muscles are fairly pathetic!

                                                                                                                                          2. re: lovessushi

                                                                                                                                            I plan to make chocolate crinkle cookies and SK's gingersnaps (not her gingerbread), as well as several others. Russian tea cakes, SK's oatmeal, chocolate chip, and pecan cookies, and her brown butter shorties, The cranberry crumb bars from her new cookbook, plus some toffee-ish or caramel stuff. I don't do gift baskets or marathon baking... I just bake batches of different cookies throughout the holiday season and have people over to sample them every time I bake! Much less headache that way :)

                                                                                                                                            Oh and I use a cheap hand mixer that I bought for $6 off of craigslist, no stand mixer.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: calmossimo

                                                                                                                                              @rstuart and calmossimo-good idea on the hand blender. My arms are pitifully weak...though i figure this can help towards my muscle building goals-lol. Those recipes sound awesome calmossimo! Are you liking the sk book? I love her blog and the cookbook is on my wishlist. Also-made a half batch of the crinkle cookies last night. By hand-they were simple, and so good!

                                                                                                                                              1. re: lovessushi

                                                                                                                                                I've been switching up my baking a bit from the list I typed out above... I have made peppermint crinkle cookies, gingersnaps (several batches, with 4 dozen each!), iced oatmeal cookies, double batches of homemade oreos, cake pops (not because I particularly like the taste, but they are crowd pleasers and pretty flashy)...

                                                                                                                                                I tried SK's whole wheat raspberry ricotta scones from her cookbook... very quick to throw together and came out delicious, moist, and fluffy. I also made the gooey cinnamon squares, which everyone liked but I definitely overbaked them and they weren't very gooey.

                                                                                                                                            2. re: lovessushi

                                                                                                                                              Oh LS - You can sooo do this w/o a stand mixer. I don't have one and to tell you the truth - I do have Stand Mixer Envy (SME), however, it's totally doable. One year when I was having problems w/ a rotator cuff (work injury, not related to mixing) DS eagerly stepped in to help. Don't let the lack of equipment deter you from trying.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: JerryMe

                                                                                                                                                Completely agree - I wouldn't let the fact that you don't have an expensive mixer keep you from trying a great recipe! Where there's a will, there's a way, as they say - just takes a little more arm muscle :)

                                                                                                                                                Calmossimo - I bake for the holidays (for that matter, all year) much like you do - love to try new recipes but I pawn everything off on co-workers, or have friends over, once I have tasted and enjoyed a few cookies/bars/whatever. SK's salted white chocolate oatmeal cookies are amazing, if you are up for trying something additional...

                                                                                                                                                1. re: ItalGreyHound

                                                                                                                                                  Thanks for the support! Im plunging forward! :)

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: lovessushi

                                                                                                                                                    Well, it certainly worked...although my arm felt like it was going to fall off at points - lol

                                                                                                                                                    I made pfeffernuse (sp?), chocolate crinkle cookies, and the split second jam cookies from Chow. Three batches of each later, I feel confident that I have muscles forming in my right arm.
                                                                                                                                                    3 batches to go...

                                                                                                                                                    Thanks again for all the help and advice!

                                                                                                                                                  2. re: ItalGreyHound

                                                                                                                                                    I've made those salted white chocolate oatmeal cookies once before, as a birthday gift. They were very well-received!

                                                                                                                                            3. You might also enjoy this thread from last year: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/816953

                                                                                                                                              Here's this year's probable list. I'm trying to keep the choices easy, having picked up tendonitis from too much knitting and typing... This is my third or fourth year of large-scale holiday cookie baking - tins sent to relatives, little boxes/bags for teachers, school staff, and friends. After I finish browsing here this morning, I'm planning to go mix up a batch

                                                                                                                                              No nuts:
                                                                                                                                              Peppermint meringues
                                                                                                                                              Gingerbread cookies – we ice most of the cutouts as if they were rolled sugar cookies, but some I just dip partway into a bowl of melted Nestle’s chocolate chips
                                                                                                                                              Biscotti – Tartine recipe - these are flavored with orange zest and liquor; I usually add pistachios and craisins or chopped apricots

                                                                                                                                              With nuts:
                                                                                                                                              Greek Christmas cookies (kourabiedes) or almond refrigerator cookies or Russian Tea Cakes
                                                                                                                                              Chocolate dipped pretzel sticks

                                                                                                                                              This might be the year I try making TrishUntrapped’s Chocolate Almond Lace Cookies or other Florentines. They sound delicious, but I don’t want to temper chocolate, and I’m guessing these only keep for a few days... I prefer to have recipes I can make now -- and then pull out or bake up as needed. Meringues and biscotti keep well at room temp in an airtight container; most of my others can be kept, as dough or pre-baked, in freezer and then defrosted as needed.

                                                                                                                                              Attached are some photos of last year's cookies.

                                                                                                                                              6 Replies
                                                                                                                                              1. re: Julia_T

                                                                                                                                                PS - The list has also changed because:
                                                                                                                                                1. Some cookies were delicious but too time-consuming: chocolate truffles, Mozart cookies
                                                                                                                                                2. Some recipes were not as delicious or dependably imprinted as I had hoped: shortbreads; springerle

                                                                                                                                                If anyone has a truly great recipe for making cookies with a printing thing - where the cookies keep a nice, sharp imprint (I have some House on the Hill "wooden" (not really wood) blocks... please post it! Thanks!

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Julia_T

                                                                                                                                                  Good news Julia, you don't need to temper the chocolate for the Chocolate Almond Lace Cookies. They freeze beautifully too and even taste good frozen. Plus you do not need to serve them right away they don't get soggy because the chocolate hardens. They can last days in an airtight container. But you have to hide it so they don't all get eaten.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                    Wonderful - they are going on this year's list!

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                      Trish, I made a batch tonight. I had to tinker a bit to get them to be a little less fragile for me, but they sure are delicious. I ended up adding another tablespoon of flour and the zest of an orange, and baked them on silpats, and that seemed to help. I didn't have time for the chocolate, so I stored the cookies in airtight tupperware separated with wax paper, and will hope that they will still defrost okay when the time comes (at which point I'll do the chocolate).

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Julia_T

                                                                                                                                                        Hmm... that's interesting that they came out fragile. And I don't mean interesting in a good way. If you can, take some pix after you fill them, I'm so curious now!!!

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                          Okay. It's probably just dry winter air and my oven, or something. I'll be filling them sometime in the next few weeks, of course, and will try to remember photos.

                                                                                                                                                  2. I haven't quite decided what I will make.. but the following for sure:
                                                                                                                                                    The ones that I make every years:
                                                                                                                                                    -Whipped shortbread
                                                                                                                                                    -7 Layer cookies (aka hello dollies)
                                                                                                                                                    -English Toffee bars
                                                                                                                                                    -Hungarian Shortbreads (with my mother's raspberry chambord jam)
                                                                                                                                                    -Sugar and Spice pecans
                                                                                                                                                    -Peppermint Bark
                                                                                                                                                    -Toffee Pretzel bark
                                                                                                                                                    -Some kind of roll-out sugar cookie... either Dorie Greenspan's or a maple version from Smitten Kitchen.
                                                                                                                                                    I found a recipe for Biscoff chocolate cups, which I"d like to try. I"d also like to make something gingery, but I'm not sure what yet... I have make the Skibo castle ginger crunch bars before. which are excellent but too fragile...

                                                                                                                                                    7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                      Skibo castle ginger crunch bars? Do tell.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                        From the Gourmet Cookie book of a few years ago
                                                                                                                                                        Very good, but I couldn't cut them into nice pieces.. they really crumbled. Maybe I should try again...

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                            They were. They cut so unevenly, I ate almost all of them, and gave the rest to my mother (who loved them) Now I have to make them again!

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                              I've made those, and they're definitely "more' ish. Not particularly pretty on a cookie plate, but so, so yummy.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Savour

                                                                                                                                                                They look REALLY sweet....are they?

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                  I didn't think so.. the ginger is the overwhelming flavour. But I have quite the sweet tooth!

                                                                                                                                                    2. I'm actually just beginning to think about what holiday cookies to bake, and I need to get going on finalizing the list, because I'll be starting this coming Sunday, have a baking day planned with best friend, we will definitely do some shortbreads, not sure what else yet.
                                                                                                                                                      Some past favorites:
                                                                                                                                                      Red and green thumbprints
                                                                                                                                                      Peanut blossoms with Hershey's kisses
                                                                                                                                                      christmas decorated sugar cookies
                                                                                                                                                      Raspberry jam filled shortbread hearts

                                                                                                                                                      and will be looking for inspiration......

                                                                                                                                                      1. I'm just starting to think about this, so here's where I'm at in cookie planning:
                                                                                                                                                        thin mints (from King Arthur flour)
                                                                                                                                                        Punitions® (via Smitten Kitchen)
                                                                                                                                                        Flo Braker's Pain d'amande
                                                                                                                                                        chocolate crinkles, probably with cardamom
                                                                                                                                                        some sort of sugar cookies or gingerbread to decorate
                                                                                                                                                        fiori di sicilia spritz cookies (King Arthur flour)
                                                                                                                                                        maple nutmeg rolled cookies (Smitten Kitchen)

                                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                        1. re: pavlova

                                                                                                                                                          I've been meaning to make that Pain D'Amande from Flo Braker. I want to put that on my list too.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                            They are so simple and delicious, but make sure to slice them as thinly as possible. Any that I didn't slice thinly enough were quite hard after baking.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: pavlova

                                                                                                                                                            Pavlova, I have also made the maple nutmeg rolled cookies, and they are great. I made them solely to use my cute Ikea cookie cutters (reindeer! Hedgehogs! Foxes!), and really enjoyed them. Making them again this year. Nutmeg is an underrated spice.. and always tastes like Christmas to me!

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                              I have those cookie cutters too. Must look for them! It seems I spend more time looking for things than actually baking these days...

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: pavlova

                                                                                                                                                                They're great, but the reindeer are a bit fragile.. they always end up tragically losing limbs (which I then, of course, need to eat).

                                                                                                                                                          3. Still not completely set, but these for sure:

                                                                                                                                                            Honey Almond Biscotti
                                                                                                                                                            Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti
                                                                                                                                                            Hazelnut Biscotti (dipped in chocolate)
                                                                                                                                                            Chocolate Cherry Chili Fudge
                                                                                                                                                            Maple Black Walnut White Fudge
                                                                                                                                                            Icebox Cookies with Pecans
                                                                                                                                                            Icebox Cookies with Pistachios and Cherries

                                                                                                                                                            1. I haven't entirely decided what I'm going to do this year, at least for cookies. I tend to change things up every year, and I usually do a mix of cookie and non-cookie treats.

                                                                                                                                                              I may do some version of thumbprints, and there's a recipe for cassis crisps I've been curious about for ages (wondering whether the flavor of the creme de cassis comes through in the baked cookies). I'll have to decide whether I want to futz with rolling out and cutting dough.

                                                                                                                                                              Also considering reprising some past favorites, like fruit florentines (with dried cranberries and golden raisins, drizzled with chocolate) and saffron-pistachio shortbread cookies.

                                                                                                                                                              8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                Hmm.. if you do make the cassis crisps, let us know. I love the cassis flavour.. have you ever tried the cassis Lindt chocolate?

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                  Okay, I just looked up the recipe on the Martha Stewart site, and reviewers say the cassis flavor doesn't come through at all, and the cookies are deadly dull. So, decision made!

                                                                                                                                                                  I've never seen cassis Lindt (or I surely would have tried it). I love any/everything blackcurrant. It's very under-used here in the US.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                    I also love blackcurrant. The chocolate is supposed be really good...
                                                                                                                                                                    I think that maybe it's because less black currants are grown here?
                                                                                                                                                                    Better to hear a recipe is bad before you try it!

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                      For quite a while you couldn't grow black currants in the States because they carried some kind of blight (I think citrus). You can get fresh ones very occasionally in the summer in the greenmarkets here. Blackcurrant flavour has never really caught on here, it seems to me. I LOVE it.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                        I did get some this summer and made a red and black currant jam. Apparently they have tons of pectin; I have never made any jam that set quite so hard. When I turn the jars upside down it doesn't budge!

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                          we have a couple black currant bushes, though they haven't produced much yet. I gather all the tiny berries I could find...and had enough for one tiny jar of jam :). Love the flavor, after living in Australia as a kid.

                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                          I believe it's a state-by-state thing, but that the ban has mostly been lifted. Because it went back so long (around 100 yrs), I think they're not much known here.

                                                                                                                                                                          I did see the blackcurrant Lindt bar in the drugstore yesterday, but I was in a big hurry, so I didn't buy one.

                                                                                                                                                                2. I've seen several recipes for Sacher Bites online, what's your recipe?

                                                                                                                                                                  13 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                                    It's a thin brownie layer baked in sheet pans, cut into fourths which are topped with preserves and then stacked, sliced into little rectangles, and drizzled with melted chocolate. I haven't made them for a while, but everyone always liked them a lot.

                                                                                                                                                                    If you want the actual recipe, let me know.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                                        Wow, you're pretty good. That's EXACTLY the recipe.....

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks, these interest me. I'm going to try them out.

                                                                                                                                                                          Because I have so many good chocolate based cookies on my menu I'm always on the hunt for non-chocolate ones. Some new ones I think I may try ahead of time to see how they are:

                                                                                                                                                                          1. Maple Walnut Crunch Ice Box Cookies

                                                                                                                                                                          2. The Skibo Castle Ginger Crunch cookies, as posted above, only with a little crystallized ginger added to the crust and cooked in either an 8 x10 or 9 x 9 baking pan. Cut when warm.

                                                                                                                                                                          3. Iced Hermits

                                                                                                                                                                          4. Snickerdoodle Blondies as mentioned above:

                                                                                                                                                                          5. I still need a fruit one. Not a fruit bar, like a lemon bar per se, where you have a crust, fruit and crumble topping. I want a cookie. Not cranberry bars. I've made white chocolate cranberry bars and they are very good, but I want something new.

                                                                                                                                                                          So far, these Blueberry Almond Bars interest me, but I'm still looking:

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                                            I'm considering a linzer cookie - would that fit your fruit bill? Haven't decided on a recipe yet....not sure I'll have time, tho....

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                              Sandy, I've done Linzer Tart cookies before, and while they are good, they have diminishing returns. The amount of work required for the reaction they get isn't worth it. They seem to be the last cookie eaten. But then again, that just may be based on the people on my cookie list and their preferences. Since I am not eating cookies these days, that's what I am going by.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                                                Thanks for the input....I'm on the fence about doing them!

                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                                Dorie Greenspan has a wonderful Linzer recipe I made last year. SO delicious and my friends loved them. It is work, and a trip to Whole Foods for almond flour, but you can make the cookies ahead of time (except the jam/powdered sugar) and freeze them. They are on my list again for this year.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                                    I made a batch tonight... and put the dough on the cookie pan into the freezer. I will want to bake them soon just to get the use of that pan back again! (Not to eat a sample; oh no.)

                                                                                                                                                                              3. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                                                I can recommend both 2 and 4..... very good.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                                                  Here's a link to a Lemon-Coconut Bar recipe from 2004 Bon Appetit. The reviews all recommend doubling the quantity of filling and I agree.


                                                                                                                                                                                  Here's a link to a recipe for a Lemon-Boysenberry Bar:


                                                                                                                                                                                  My memory tells me that 1/3 cup jam wasn't enough to spread evenly on the cookie base, and I added more jam. Then, I regretted this. Boysenberry is a very assertive flavor, and while I love it, I thought it overwhelmed the lemon layer in the recipe. I'd recommend you stick with the recipe amount, applying the jam very thinly or in a streakier way or use a blueberry (or whatever) jam.

                                                                                                                                                                        2. still figuring out what's in our rotation this year.

                                                                                                                                                                          I usually do the
                                                                                                                                                                          cranberry pistachio shortbread
                                                                                                                                                                          peppermint bark
                                                                                                                                                                          ginger spice cookies (all from Epicurious; the ginger ones are fabulous, chewy, with black pepper and chopped crystallized ginger)
                                                                                                                                                                          Austrian sour cream twists, an old family recipe involving a layered yeast dough that I've never seen anywhere else
                                                                                                                                                                          orange cream fudge
                                                                                                                                                                          cornflake wreaths. My kids loooove these :)
                                                                                                                                                                          candied bacon nut mix

                                                                                                                                                                          Not sure what else...oh, and sugar cookies, frosted always with buttercream frosting-none of that fancy royal icing here :)

                                                                                                                                                                          5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: girlwonder88

                                                                                                                                                                            The Austrian sour cream twists sound intriguing. Recipe please? And do they keep well?

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: 1MunchieMonster

                                                                                                                                                                              There is a recipe called German Twists, also a very old recipe, which calls for yeast, sour cream, and makes really special and unusual cookies. Search for it on AllRecipes. It is the only one by that name.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: 1MunchieMonster

                                                                                                                                                                                They do keep well, in an airtight container, and the freeze very well.

                                                                                                                                                                                And deeka, that's the recipe! Interesting, I've looked for it for years but never found it, under the Austrian name. Thanks! Saves me having to retype it :)

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: girlwonder88

                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi gw, I would love to know the origins of this recipe as well. I got it from a family friend about 50 years ago. She was a fantastic baker and made these and oodles of other recipes for a large get-together of friends and family, each Christmas. She was originally from Pennsylvania so I always wondered if the recipe had its roots with Mennonites or Amish but I do not know for sure. I do love a good mystery.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: girlwonder88

                                                                                                                                                                                    Thank you girlwonder & deekaa! That looks cool with all the twisted layeres and the sour cream and yeast sounds delish. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                              2. I made Caramel Puff Corn in my oven.. and it leaked over the baking sheet and into the bottom of my oven (in places that cannot be seen) so I currently cannot use my oven without the fire-alarm going off because presumably the caramel is burning up in the bottom. However: I am adding these flour free brownies to my list and these no-bake peppermint in the meantime.

                                                                                                                                                                                Flourless Chocolate-Espresso Caramel Brownies [NOT my blog]

                                                                                                                                                                                No-bake Peppermints [NOT my blog

                                                                                                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: GraceW


                                                                                                                                                                                  One of my favorite no bake cookies is Chocolate Crunch Cookies. They're easy to make, one recipe makes tons, kids can help, and people love them. They only have two basic ingredients, various melted chocolates and cornflakes, but no one figures that out. The sum is equal to much more than the parts.

                                                                                                                                                                                  People might snicker at this recipe. I've posted it on Chowhound for years... and it sounds too simple to be good. But guess what!! Jacques Pepin makes these cookies. He loves them and he even featured them on his TV show last year. So there you go!

                                                                                                                                                                                  Chocolate Crunch Cookies

                                                                                                                                                                                  16 ounces milk chocolate (I like Ghiradelli bars, some folks use Hershey, whatever you like)
                                                                                                                                                                                  4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
                                                                                                                                                                                  12 ounces semisweet chocolate, or chocolate chip
                                                                                                                                                                                  10 cups cornflakes

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. In a large metal pot (don't use non-stick it effects the chocolate) melt the chocolates 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 fold 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 paper. Cool at room temperature to set for two to three hours. They'll pop right off the paper. Yield 9 - 11 dozen depending on size. Store at room temperature. Don't refrigerate.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Link to Jacques' recipe. He calls them Cornflakes Rochers! He also has a version with hazelnuts.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: GraceW

                                                                                                                                                                                    Note to self: no Caramel Puff Corn! What a recipe - sneaking into hidden places and smoking - sounds like bad boys in high school!

                                                                                                                                                                                    Could you remove the fire alarm battery and send the oven through a self-clean cycle?

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Julia_T

                                                                                                                                                                                      It is my fault: I should have used a roasting pan instead of a cookie sheet--but I had no idea the caramel would expand all over the place. It was--amazing--amazing--so you should make it!

                                                                                                                                                                                      Unfortunately my oven does not have a self-clean cycle. I am not sure how to get into the bottom, but it is a good excuse to save up my baking for my relatives's houses.

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. I've only made one batch so far - Basler Brunsli, a long-time favorite - but am plotting many more to come!

                                                                                                                                                                                    Aside from Basler Brunsli, the must-haves in my family include:
                                                                                                                                                                                    Orange-cardamom thins (dipped in chocolate)
                                                                                                                                                                                    Rainbow/seven-layer cookies

                                                                                                                                                                                    I will likely do a couple from this list, all well-established in our holiday rotation:
                                                                                                                                                                                    Biscotti (I like pistachio and dried cherry)
                                                                                                                                                                                    Chocolate crinkles
                                                                                                                                                                                    Pecan puffs
                                                                                                                                                                                    Almond crescents
                                                                                                                                                                                    Cinnamon-almond bars
                                                                                                                                                                                    Thumbprint cookies

                                                                                                                                                                                    I'm also trying to decide which of the following new-to-me cookies to attempt:
                                                                                                                                                                                    Chewy Chocolate-Gingerbread cookies (recipe here: http://www.sassyradish.com/2007/10/co...
                                                                                                                                                                                    )Early Grey shortbread
                                                                                                                                                                                    Poppyseed cookies
                                                                                                                                                                                    Green tea-pistachio shortbread (my brainwave, taking a green tea shortbread recipe and adding chopped pistachios)
                                                                                                                                                                                    Pfeffernusse (looking for a great recipe for these)
                                                                                                                                                                                    Cornetti from the Gourmet cookie book
                                                                                                                                                                                    Butter cookies (again from the Gourmet cookie book - I don't usually bother with plain roll-out cookies, but am very intrigued by this recipe with hard-boiled egg yolks!)

                                                                                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: mirima

                                                                                                                                                                                      Mirima, those chocolate ginger ones looks good. I'm looking for a sturdy gingery square or cookie this year, and these look good..

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                        I'm excited to try them. I don't have a good tried-and-true recipe for gingery cookies, so I'm hoping they'll hit the spot!

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Does anyone have a tried and true gingerbread cookie recipe? Not too soft; something to make gingerbread people and Chistmas trees/stars, etc. with, but not so hard as to build my muscles like The Hulk? My Good Housekeeping cookbook, typically foolproof, has a recipe but the dough ends up being rock solid.


                                                                                                                                                                                      11 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: CocoaChanel

                                                                                                                                                                                        Here is the precious, dependable recipe for gingerbread cookies which I make every year. Great for rolling and cutting, easy, and delicious (IMO). Unfortunately, I did not record where I first saw the recipe - perhaps someone here can tell us. This probably contains some modifications because I keep my recipes on the computer, and occasionally re-open a file and change parts to suit what works for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                        Gingerbread Cookies

                                                                                                                                                                                        Can make a half-recipe. For Christmas baking, make 2 or 3 batches.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1 C butter (no substitutes)
                                                                                                                                                                                        1 C sugar
                                                                                                                                                                                        2 t ground ginger
                                                                                                                                                                                        1 t baking soda
                                                                                                                                                                                        1-2 t ground cinnamon
                                                                                                                                                                                        ½ t salt
                                                                                                                                                                                        Dash of ground cloves (optional)
                                                                                                                                                                                        1 C molasses
                                                                                                                                                                                        5 C all-purpose flour

                                                                                                                                                                                        Preheat oven to 350 F. Beat butter in large bowl (stand mixer bowl if available) on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt; beat until combined, scraping sides occasionally. Beat in molasses until combined. Beat in flour. If still very wet and sticky, add more flour.

                                                                                                                                                                                        Divide dough into easily rolled balls. Can put dough in freezer at this point, well-wrapped. Otherwise, sprinkle flour onto wax paper on the counter; roll the cookies out on the waxed paper; use cookie cutters. Bake about 6 minutes. Transfer to wire rack; cool.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Julia_T

                                                                                                                                                                                          Thank you!! Looking forward to trying these out next weekend :)

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: CocoaChanel

                                                                                                                                                                                            Great! Come back and let us know how these work out!

                                                                                                                                                                                            By the way, when I wrote "for Christmas baking, make 2 or 3 batches," that's a note to myself - it means sequentially - I mix and put dough in freezer; mix up another batch and put in freezer, etc. A double recipe would be too bulky for a regular stand mixer.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: CocoaChanel

                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm sorry I know this is irrelevant, but I LOVE your chowhound name. I wish I had been more creative with mine :-/

                                                                                                                                                                                              And to keep in the spirit of the thread, I am making Ina's thumbprint cookies, and will sprinkle some green sugar crystals so there's a more festive look to them. I'll probably make them with my little cousins, they love to bake!

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: eviemichael

                                                                                                                                                                                                Thank you Evie :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                I love jam filled thumb prints. I hope they turn out well.

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: CocoaChanel

                                                                                                                                                                                            I have used this recipe, which is super-simple to make and easy to work with, for gingerbread people. It's more cakey than crisp when rolled/baked as directed (which I like), but you can make them crisp by rolling thinner. I recommend reading the reviews for ideas on that.


                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                                              Caitlin thanks for the reminder about this recipe. This was my go-to as well. I made it the year it came out in the magazine and then for several subsequent years always with perfect results.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: CocoaChanel

                                                                                                                                                                                              I made gingerbread cookies today using the Epicurious link that Caitlin McGrath provided. Thank you! By far, the easiest dough to work with. I doubled the spices as others had suggested. Yummy!

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: CocoaChanel

                                                                                                                                                                                                Glad it worked out for you! It is a very forgiving dough, isn't it?

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Never using another gingerbread dough! Already saved to my Epicurious recipe box. It is so easy to work with.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  ( I will use a bit less baking soda next time)

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Thank you again for the link! :)
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Have a very Happy Christmas!

                                                                                                                                                                                            3. For all cookie-lovers, my local paper usually does cookie recipes all through December, and this year they have taken readers's favourites. I've gotten some good ideas from them in the past... you might too!

                                                                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                That is really fun to read! Thank you for posting the link. I am curious to know if you've tried any of those and, if so, what did you think?

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: kmlmgm

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Not yet.. but I'm sure I will!

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. you all may like this little "history" of some christmas cookies http://www.theculinarylife.com/2012/a...

                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                  That is really interesting. Thanks for sharing

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. I've done my baking yesterday & today.........what I've ended up making is:

                                                                                                                                                                                                    PB/Chocolate/Bacon Fudge
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Lemon sugar cookies
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Molasses crinkle cookies
                                                                                                                                                                                                    "Garbage" cookies (chocolate chip cookies with pretzels & potato chips, crushed mixed in)
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Magic bars
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Marshmallow & chocolate chip topped brownies
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Cake pops
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Half-dipped Winter Oreos
                                                                                                                                                                                                    PB Pretzel sandwiches
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Jam-topped sugar cookie "logs" (these get sliced after baking)

                                                                                                                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: jenscats5

                                                                                                                                                                                                      JensCats, would you please share the recipes for Half-dipped Winter Oreos and the jam logs? Much appreciated.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Well, for the Oreos I just buy bags of Oreos.....I prefer the Candy Cane ones, but couldn't find them this year so just used the Winter ones (red filling). Then in a small crockpot set to Warm, I melt white candy coat & once melted dip the Oreos in halfway & set on waxed paper. Then sprinkle before set with Christmas-y colored sugar or non-pareils. They are very simple and not really "homemade" but people LOVE them......

                                                                                                                                                                                                        The jam logs are actually Chow's "Split Second Cookies." http://www.chow.com/recipes/30219-spl...

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jenscats5

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks. I made the Jam Logs last year. Very easy to make.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I couldn't think of what they were called when I posted originally!! Mine spread too much, so next time I think I'll chill for a bit before baking. Once cut they look very nice, tho.....

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. So far I have made:

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Chewy Cardamon Cookies
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Almond-coconut sugar cookie bark
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Raspberry Jam Thumbprints (made with a walnut, brown sugar shortbread)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Chestnut filling sandwich cookies

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Going to make another batch of snickerdoodles this week, they are so perfect for teatime

                                                                                                                                                                                                      11 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: olyolyy

                                                                                                                                                                                                        I'd be very interested in the chewy cardamom cookie recipe and the chestnut filling too. i made quite a few jars of sweetened chestnut puree last year and really need to use it up. Thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: pavlova

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Pavlova: I made these a few years ago..

                                                                                                                                                                                                          They are a great use of chestnut puree... very yummy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks! I haven't got a thumbprint cookie lined up for this year so may give these a try.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: pavlova

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I made them about 2 years ago and enjoyed them..

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I am going to try these piped chocolate chestnut ones from Dan Lepard this year--I think they'll ship more easily. http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyl...

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: pavlova

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh those look great.. as does this Guardian special!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I've been getting a lot of recipes from The Guardian recently.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: pavlova

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Dan Lepard has some very nice-looking recipes!! He is quite enamoured with cornflour, I notice....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yes. I got Short and Sweet last year.. but still haven't opened it!

                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: pavlova

                                                                                                                                                                                                                The chewy cardamon cookie is basically a snickerdoodle rolled in cardamon and sugar. I used the recipe from ourbestbites.com after having unfavorable results with martha stewarts and smitten kitchens snickerdoodle recipes. They are very good, simple yet special (if you like cardamon).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                The chestnut filling was sweetened chestnut puree, butter and rum. I did some thumbprint type ones first with just the sweetened chestnut filling but did not like the texture and found it to be too sweet after baking and the chestnut paste lost a bit of it's delicate flavor. Having also a dandy amount of sweetened chestnut puree around this year I will let you know my favorite thing to make with it lately is bead pudding/baked french toast. I just whisk the puree with the milk before adding eggs. It's very nice with some vanilla bean and rum.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: olyolyy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks! I was actually thinking of making cardamom snickerdoodles as I don't love cinnamon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Bread pudding sounds delicious. I also combine the puree with whipped cream to top cakes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. Trying to decide what gingery type treat to make,, torn between a few recipes:
                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Chocolate Ginger crinkles from one of my favourite single-topic cookbooks
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Or.. no-bake marble ginger bars..
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Also considering the martha Stewart chocolate ginger cookies.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              I don't want a giant batch, and I prefer softer cookies. Decisions!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                              7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                If you're talking about the MS chewy choc. gingerbread cookies, I haven't made them, but a CH poster highly recommended them to me a few years ago.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Sounds like you're looking for a choc-ginger combo, but if ginger and soft cookies are in your sights, I do recommend these terrific ginger spice cookies (and 97% of 355 reviewers would make them again!): http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I use all butter (no shortening) and roll in coarse (turbinado) sugar.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I can vouch, these ginger cookies are super awesome. I have eaten them as is, used them to create ice cream sandwiches (with pumpkin ice cream), and this year I mis- measured and added too much butter, so I baked them in a 9x13 and covered with leftover rum butter cream icing (AMAZING!!). I'm not even a ginger fan, and this is hands down one of my favorite cookie recipes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    They are sitting in the fridge. waiting to be rolled in sugar and baked!! I did use some shortening but reversed the proportions (1/4 C shortening and 1/2 Cup butter)...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      And.. they're wonderful. Taking them into work tomorrow (along with everything else on my list). Let's see how they do! I think that they're a keeper..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I don't usually like Martha Stewart but do love her chocolate gingerbread cookies, they are a keeper.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: coll

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Thanks Coll and Caitlin.. I think that I will try both ;) And report back!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Replying to myself.. I really like the no-bake marble ginger bars, but I'll have to see if anyone else does too..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Made:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      -Toasted coconut & toffee chocolate chip cookies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      -pistachio brittle
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      -molasses crinkle cookies

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      To make:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      -pretzel peanut butter cup bark
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      -whipped shortbread
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      -double chocolate cranberry cookies

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I will make more if I have the time, but these are my must bakes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: aasg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        If you have time, would love the recipes for Toasted coconut and toffee chocolate chip cookies.. and molasses crinkles? The pretzel peanut butter cup barks also look great!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Molassess crinkle sounds delicious!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Can anyone advise on shipping cookies, in terms of which cookies will definitely not be fresh upon arrival, and which might last longer (maybe not specifically, just an overall guideline if there is such a thing)? The cookies will have a two day shipping time to get to their destination, and I am not shipping over a weekend so they don't get stuck somewhere on a Sunday.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Here is the recipe for toasted coconut, toffee, & chocolate chip cookies:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I used Skor bits, as we don't have Heath here. I also almost overcooked the coconut at the 4 minute mark, so I would watch it very carefully from now on.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Here are the molasses crinkle cookies:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I make those one every year and they are always a hit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: aasg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              That's great.. I'm in Canada too.. so I can only get Skor bits myself...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. This year's collection (smaller than usual since I'm traveling over Christmas): classic sugar cookies, peppermint cream cheese brownies, pistachio cranberry white chocolate blondies, ginger sandwich cookies w/ lemon cream

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. I'm watching "All Star Cookies" taped on the foodnetwork right now.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            So to my cookie list I won't use them all cause some don't appeal to me but I like the looks of some unusual suspects ;:-/
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Shamdra Lee's New York Cheesecake cookies, the recipe only makes 12 so I'm gonna do a batch and see if it's worth all the ingredients needed to make enough to add to gift baskets.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Giada's cranberry pistachio biscotti with white chocolate dip and green and red sugar tops
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. Ina's finger shortbreads with dark chocolate dip
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            4. Anne Burrells puff pastry heart shaped Palmiers only I'll use lemon not orange
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            5. Re Drummund's hand cookies but not in the shape of hands, in other shapes

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            We'll see if any make the grade so experimenting will occur today.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. What recipe do you use for lebkuchen? The ones I've seen seem to have some negative reviews (and some great ones). Have you got a recipe that always works for you?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: pavlova

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I used to always make them years ago, but haven't for quite a while. My recipe has GOOD! written on it, so I am determined to get it made still this year!


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 egg
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3/4 cup brown sugar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/2 cup honey
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/2 cup molasses
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3 cups unbleached flour
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 t. cinnamon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/2 t. baking soda
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/2 t. ground cloves
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/2 t. ground ginger
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/4 t. ground cardamom
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/2 cup chopped almonds, lightly toasted
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/2 cup finely chopped mixed dried fruits, such as pineapple, figs, apricots, etc.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 egg white
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 T. cornstarch
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 t. vanilla

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Beat egg in stand mixer on high speed for 1 minute. Add the brown sugar and beat on medium until light and fluffy, then add honey and molasses and mix well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Stir together the flour, baking soda, and spices in a large bowl. Add to the egg-sugar mixture mixture and mix just until combined. Remove from the mixer and stir in the fruit by hand. Cover and chill for several hours.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                After dough has chilled, make the glaze by whisking together all of the ingredients; it should not be runny, but be loose enough to spread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Divide dough in two. Roll out each one to 8" x 12". Spread with the glaze, then cut into 2" squares. Place squares 2" apart on parchment-lined baking sheets.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until edges are set. Cool on racks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks for typing that out! The others I've seen have you glaze after baking so now I'm really intrigued.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: pavlova

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yeah, the original recipe did the glaze after baking, too. And it had candied fruit rather than dried. There was a recipe on the following page of the magazine that had the baked-on glaze, so I did that on the lebkuchen instead and liked it better.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Between Sandy taking a couple of weeks out of our lives here in Hoboken and bing crazy busy at work (in advertising for a major retailer), iwas going to shelve the cookies this year. But then people started asking and I started baking. In the midst of it all right now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I think my spritz cookies turned out very nice this year (see pic). And my favorite new cookie is Lidia Bastianich's ricotta cookies. Simple to make and dlicious. They are replacing my usual Italian knots this year as the are alot less work.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Buon natale!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I was hoping you were ok, ttoommyy. Good to see you're in baking mode!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks buttertart. Very kind of you. Nothing major happened to us; more of an inconvenience than anything else for a oouple of weeks. Parts of Hoboken are still suffering though.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    ttoommy, did you see the ricotta cookie in the New York Times? I wonder how it compares.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I had not, but just looked at it now. It's basically the same recipe, except the NYT recipe is double Lidia's recipe. The only difference is the icing; the NYT's has melted butter & milk while Lidia's is just powdered sugar and lemon juice. To be honest, I like the cookies better without the icing,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. After writing a story about a police officer who is assisting one of the Newtown victim's families, I had to do something to unwind yesterday. Instead of grabbing vodka, I hit the pantry and made an early round of cookies for the officer and other cops.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    From left,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Raspberry Bars, Space Dust Cookies, Chocolate Crunch Cookies, Hermits, Blondies.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Close up of the Blondies. I finally learned how to cut diamond shapes. So easy, wish I had figured this out a long time ago.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Baking is truly therapeutic, isn't it! I'm sure the cops will be very grateful!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yes, I do think baking is my "therapy." And this past week, I needed a lot of it. Going to a Christmas Caroling Party Friday and was asked to bring a dessert. So I'm making an Almond Lace Cream Cake I created in honor of Julia Child's 100th and won first prize at a festival this summer, and Chocolate Almond Lace Cookies as a side. Normally, I wouldn't make so much for a party like this, but I have the need to knead, so to speak.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. a friend of mine was giving me her secret today @ work regarding her killer rice Krispy treats.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        she does the original butter-melted mallows-etc. but then makes her own caramel, stirs that into her mixture and THEN melts chocolate chips AND white chips -packs the mixture into pan then drizzled the white and then the chocolate over the top, let cool, cut into pieces.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: iL Divo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Wow! That would make Rice Krispies great!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            yep, they would be pretty good I think, sounded good to me. I didn't make them yesterday when I made way too many varieties of other kinds of cookies.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            NOT MANY OF WHICH TURNED OUT.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I used Gordon Ramseys recipe for shortbread which added 2 eggs to the mix and very little sugar.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            put two large triangles in his lunch yesterday and he called and said dump and don't give as gifts, that bad.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I also gave him a Trisha Yearwood snickerdoodle and his words were, "Honey, you've lost your touch." I told him I used everyone's recipe but my own, he said to stick to mine. So??????????? what to do with the plethera of cookies I made yesterday? toss 'em in the front yard for hungry birds I suppose :( /But I'lll attempt the rice krispie treats as per my friend and if they're bad, it'll just be another disappointment and waste of ingredients headed for the dumpster.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            why am I so off this year? why did I attempt recipes not my own just because they sounded like they'd work. this isn't the time to do that.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            what a dumb idea on my part.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. OK, I've finalized my list (have been making and giving away cookies for a month now! Need some for Santa)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Already made and eaten/given:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Baklava Bars
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Eggnog Rum Balls
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Brownie Cookies with peppermint tops
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Mincemeat Rugelach
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Chocolate Cookies with Peppermint Tops
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Saffron Brod (not really a cookie)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Made or making this weekend:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Basler Brunsli
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Arnhem Girls
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Saltine Toffee (Was going to make caramels but my candy thermometer is broken)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Grapefruit Jellies (if I can find another darn candy thermometer)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. This is the first time in a few years I've really done christmas baking. Here's what we made:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Black Pepper Parmesan Biscotti

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            English Rocks(Fruitcake cookies, which have been surprisingly popular, I"m making a third batch today)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Gingerbread Men

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Mexican Chocolate Crackles

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Anise Scented Fig/Date Swirls

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Chipotle Caramel Corn

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Korvapuutsi(Finnish cardamom buns)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Chocolate Chip Cookies

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thumprint Cookies