Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas Recipes & Cards

This was the scene in my kitchen last Wednesday.....I finally got to make some cookies and candies!!! I had previously made some cut-out cookies - a lost art....I've learned! Why doesn't anyone make these anymore??? They are the best....well....I shouldn't be so quick with that statement! After buying a variety of cookies at a bake sale....I don't understand how people can ruin cut-out cookies - BUT THEY CAN!!!!

I know it's a little late to be sharing cookie recipes....but what can I say? My life is a lot less stressed now and I have a little time to share with you! These cookies are good for any time of the year - especially the cut-out cookies. I make these for Valentines Day, Easter, 4th of July, Halloween and Thanksgiving too!

So - to save the poor souls out there that have crumby cut-out recipes.....and out of the goodness of my heart....and for all those poor children that have never had the fabulous pleasure of getting themselves and everything else covered with frosting and sprinkles - here's my recipe:

Kelly's Cut-Out Cookies

11/2 c powdered sugar
1 cut butter
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 c flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 tsp almond extract

Mix powdered sugar, butter, egg, vanilla and almond extract. Mix in flour, baking soda and cream of tartar. Put dough in a gallon ziplock bag, flattened out and refrigerate at least 2 hours. (I usually refrigerate over night). Preheat oven to 375. Break off chunks of dough and squeeze in your hands until it is workable - on a floured surface, roll out to about 3/16" and cut with cookie cutters (see tip below). Bake 6-7 minutes untile edges are light brown. Cool and frost.

Here's where the cheating comes in....I LOVE cream cheese I buy a can at the grocery story and use that for my cookies.

TIP: Here's how I think people ruin their cut-out cookies....they work too much flour into them when they are rolling and re-rolling them out....this is very important. Try not to roll them out more than twice - this will make sure that you are working as little flour into them as possible.

ANOTHER TIP: I always double the batch - I've only listed a single batch above - double everything. If you don't - this recipe is so small, you won't get many cookies.

I know - I know...I don't have any pictures of my cut-out cookies - that's because I made them on an earlier day and they are ALL GONE!!!!

Here's a picture of my Andes Chocolate Cookies - these are my daughter's favorites! I've listed the recipe below.

Andes Chocolate Cookies

3/4 c butter
1 1/2 c brown sugar
2 T water
2 c chocolate chips (12 oz bag)
2 eggs
2 1/2 c flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
Andes Mints

In your microwave, melt together 1st four ingredients - I do this on 50% so the chocolate doesn't burn. Stir. Add eggs one at a time. Mix in dry ingredients, except the mints. Refrigerate 1 hour. Roll into balls. Place on cookies sheet and bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes. As soon as you get them off the cookie sheet, put 1/2 a mint on each cookie. Wait a couple minutes and then swirl the mint on top of the cookie with the back of a spoon.

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