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cookie fest’09

12.16.2009

Guess what I’m doing tonight? Baking 5 kinds of cookies and boxing them up for my husband’s clients! I’m as excited about this prospect as I am dreading it... you see, hundreds of cookies and a Wedgewood stove with only 1 shelf rack is not a good combination. I’m going to need a system (and a lot of patience I think). However, if all goes according to plan, I’m going to do it all over again next week for friends & neighbors. Below are the recipes I’ll be using. Most of these cookies I’ve made before, but adapted for the holidays to make sure they offer a good variety of flavor. I’m packing them in gable top boxes and tying with ribbon. Hopefully I’ll have some pretty pictures to share of the results. Wish me luck!


{image via martha stewart}

Dried Cherry and Hazelnut Cookies
Cook Time: 15 min
Yield: 24 cookies

Ingredients
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup, plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 large egg
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup coarsely chopped dried tart cherries
1/2 cup slivered, blanched hazelnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped

Directions
To toast the nuts, arrange them in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 6 to 8 minutes until lightly toasted. Cool completely before using.

In a large bowl, with an electric mixer, beat the butter, sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and salt until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes, then beat in the egg. Add the flour and beat on the lowest speed until just blended. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the dried cherries and nuts.

Transfer the dough to a sheet of plastic wrap and shape it into a log, about 12-inches long and 1 1/2-inches in diameter. Wrap the dough in the plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. (Dough can be made up to 3 days in advance).

Arrange an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 heavy baking sheets with parchment paper.

Cut the log crosswise into 1/2-inch thick slices. Transfer the dough slices to the prepared baking sheets, spacing them about 1-inch apart. Bake until the cookies are golden around the edges and puffed, about 15 minutes. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely before icing, about 30 minutes.


Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies
Cook Time:14 min
Yield: approximately 65 cookies

Ingredients
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into chunks
1 teaspoon water
1 bag semisweet chocolate chips (for dipping)

Directions
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Add the flour, salt, and powdered sugar to a food processor and pulse to combine. Add in the vanilla, the butter and the 1 teaspoon of water. Pulse together just until a dough is formed. Put the dough on a sheet of plastic wrap and roll into a log, about 2 1/2 inches in diameter and 5 inches long. Tightly twist each end of the wrap in opposite directions. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

Slice the log into 1/3-inch thick disks. Arrange on nonstick cookie sheets, parchment lined or silpat lined baking sheets, 2 inches apart. Bake until the edges are just light brown, about 12 to 14 minutes, rotating the pans half way through the baking process. Remove from the oven and let cool on the cookie sheets for 5 minutes. Transfer to wire racks and cool until room temperature.

Melt chocolate over double boiler with a little vegetable oil to smooth. Dip half cookie in chocolate and coat with sprinkles if desired.

Tips: Store in airtight container for up to a week or freeze uncooked log for up to a month. Also, use the freshest ingredients possible for the best tasting cookies.


Jam Thumbprint Cookies

Ingredients
24 tablespoons (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
3/4 cup jam (any type)
powdered sugar (garnish)

Directions
Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until smooth. Add egg, and beat until completely combined. With mixer on low, add flour, and mix just until incorporated.
Shape dough into 1-inch balls (about 2 tablespoons each). Place on baking sheets, at least 3 inches apart.
Moisten thumb with water, and gently press the center of each ball, making an indentation about 1/2 inch wide and inch deep. In microwave or on stove, heat jam until liquefied; spoon about 1/2 teaspoon into each indentation. Bake until cookies are golden brown around edges, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack, and let cool completely. If storing, place in an airtight container at room temperature, up to 2 days.
Sift powdered sugar over cookies for garnish.


Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients:
1 cup softened butter
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1‐1/3 cups unsifted flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 cups oatmeal
1 ‐ 12oz pkg semi‐sweet chocolate chips

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Beat butter, eggs, sugars and vanilla until light and fluffy.
Add flour, salt, baking soda, and oatmeal. Blend well.
Stir in chocolate chips.
Drop clusters from teaspoon on to ungreased baking sheets, 2 inches apart.
Bake in 375 degree oven for 8‐10 minutes (or until done).


Orange Currant Cookies

Ingredients
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup regular (or light) sour cream
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup currants
2 tablespoons freshly grated orange zest

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or using a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until combined. Add egg and beat to combine. Beat in sour cream.
In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the currants and lemon zest, and stir to combine. Add to butter mixture, beating to combine.
Drop dough by level teaspoons onto cookie sheets. Leave 1 1/2 inches between cookies. Bake until puffed, and golden around edges, about 15 minutes.
Cool 5 minutes and remove to rack to cool completely.

Karissa (December 16, 2009 at 2:57 PM)  

what a big project! a delicious one, though!

Kelley at My Island Wedding (December 16, 2009 at 6:48 PM)  

you are too heavenly...

happy holidays and if i don't speak with you... happy new year too!!!

-kelley

Torie Jayne (December 16, 2009 at 11:43 PM)  

Sounds so very yummy! Enjoy your baking, Have a sweet day!

Party Box Design (December 17, 2009 at 7:55 AM)  

oh my gosh... 5 kinds in ONE NIGHT! You will most certainly need a glass of wine while you cook! lol... oh and some milk to dip your cookies in. I mean you gotta taste test right?!?

Party Cake (December 17, 2009 at 11:34 AM)  

Will have to try these recipes before Christmas. Especially the chocolate dipped shortbread...sounds delish!

Candace

Party Cake (December 17, 2009 at 11:34 AM)  

Will have to try these recipes before Christmas. Especially the chocolate dipped shortbread...sounds delish!

Candace

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