Thursday, December 20, 2012

Big Soft Ginger Cookies

One of my all time favorite cookies to make during the holidays are ginger cookies. It has been a tradition in my family for who knows how many years and I have always enjoyed making them. The smell of the ginger, the flow of the molasses. Everything seems to be in order and it always makes me in the holiday spirit from the first batch that I make. They have been a hit year after year at my parents' Christmas party with their friends and on Christmas Eve when all my family comes over. I hope you and your family and friends enjoy them as much as mine do!

2 1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup molasses
2 tablespoons sugar (If you are planning on making them into 1-inch balls, you'll be needing around 6-7 tablespoons of sugar. This is what I do from personal experience. The size the recipe tells you is WAY to big if you are planning on having a party or giving them as a gift.)

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, and cloves; set aside.
In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer for thirty (30) seconds. Beat the 1 cup sugar. Add egg and molasses; beat well. Stir flour into egg mixture.
Shape dough into 1 1/2 inch balls, about 1 heaping tablespoon dough for each. Roll balls in the 2 tablespoons sugar to coat. Place balls about 2 1/2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake in a 350 degree oven (300 for some ovens. You know your oven the best so it's your call.) about 10 minutes or until light brown and still puffed. (Do not over bake). Cool cookies on cookie sheet for 2 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Chrstmas Peppermint Cookies

1 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for surface
1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 ounces (5 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
3/4 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
8 large candy canes or 30 peppermint candies, crushed
2 pounds white chocolate, coarsely chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Sift flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a bowl.
  2. Beat butter and sugar with a mixer on medium-high speed for 1 minute. Reduce speed to medium-low, and add egg, then yolk, beating well after each addition. Beat in peppermint extract.
  3. Slowly add flour mixture, and beat until just incorporated. Shape dough into 2 disks, wrap each in plastic, and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour (or up to 2 days).
  4. Roll out 1 disk of dough on a lightly floured surface to 1/8-inch thickness. Freeze until firm, about 15 minutes.
  5. Using a 2-inch round cutter, cut out circles, and place 1 inch apart on parchment-lined baking sheets. Roll and cut scraps once. Freeze cookies until firm, about 15 minutes. Repeat with remaining disk. Alternately, form dough into tablespoon-sized balls with your hands. Freeze the balls for about 15 minutes, then press flat with a glass.
  6. Bake until cookies are dry to the touch, about 12 minutes. Transfer parchment, with cookies, to wire racks, and let cool. (Undecorated cookies will keep, covered, for up to 3 days.)
  7. Sift crushed candy, and separate larger pieces from dust, reserving both.
  8. Melt chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of gently simmering water. Remove from heat. Dunk cookies into melted chocolate. Using a fork, turn to coat, let excess drip off, and gently scrape bottom against edge of bowl. Place on parchment-lined baking sheets, and sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon of either candy pieces or dust on top. Repeat, sprinkling half the cookies with pieces and the rest with dust. Refrigerate until set, up to 3 hours. Decorated cookies are best served the same day.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Easy No Bake Peanut Butter Bars

1 cup butter melted
2 cups graham cracker crumbs (use the boxed kind, or grind them in a food processor. Tiny granules.)
2 cups confectioners’ sugar (aka powdered sugar)
1 cup + 4 tablespoons peanut butter
1 1/2 cups milk chocolate chips

In a medium bowl, mix together the melted butter, graham cracker crumbs, confectioners’ sugar, and 1 cup peanut butter until well blended. Press evenly into the bottom of an ungreased 9×13 inch pan. (I did mine in a 9X9 square pan because I wanted them thicker) In the microwave, melt the chocolate chips with the peanut butter, stirring every 30 seconds until melted until smooth. Spread over the peanut butter layer. Refrigerate for at least one hour before cutting into squares.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Candy Cane Brownies

1 cup
granulated sugar
250 mL
1/3 cup
unsalted butter, softened
75 mL
3/4 cup
all-purpose flour
175 mL
1/2 cup
125 mL
1/4 tsp
1 mL
1/2 cup
125 mL
330  Calories
3 g
13 g
49 g
125 mg
35 g
2 g

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease an 8-in. square baking dish. Using an electric mixer (stand or hand-held) on medium, cream sugar and butter until light and fluffy, about 5 min. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until well combined, about 2 min.
  2. In another bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa and salt. With mixer on low, add flour mixture to butter mixture and mix just until combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Spread batter in prepared baking dish and bake until a toothpick comes out with a few crumbs attached, about 20 min. Let cool completely then evenly spread frosting over brownies, sprinkle with candy canes.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Sugar Cookies

1 1/2 cups butter
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoons vanilla
5 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour (or overnight).
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Roll out dough on floured surface 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes with any cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
Bake 6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.

These cookies are awesome to make at any holiday. All you need are the cookie cutters for the holiday. For this holiday, to be culturally diverse, you could use a star or a gingerbread man cookie cutter. I love making these cookies because there are so many ways you can create the final product of these cookies. Especially for the holiday season. Hopefully this recipe helps you with the holiday season.

Monday, November 5, 2012

The Holiday Season!

Halloween's behind us and the holiday season is soon approaching. Christmas trees, the manora (You know the Jewish Candle holder thing? My Jewish readers will know what I'm talking about), and so many more inanimate objects that come with this holiday season. It doesn't matter what religion you believe in, all that matters is that we come together as one. Well, that is, if you have a religion. But that doesn't matter. My favorite holiday memory is when I was a little girl going to my grandparent's house on Christmas Day and my late grandmother (She passed away two years ago on New Years Eve. Bless her soul) was finishing up making the Christmas dinner. She was always the last one to sit down to eat. Even then, she was always thinking about what else she could put out. She put her everything into the meal. She always made cookies for my church's cookie walk and manage to have the time to make some extra for Christmas dinner. And let me tell you, the cookies that she made were the best cookies around.
Anyways, I should get back to doing some school work. I should start thinking about what kind of desserts I'm going to make for Christmas. And if you want me to make any cookies for your family this holiday season, just let me know. My last day of classes is on December 14th. So that means that I will be available after that. Well, when I'm not working at my job that is!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Hey Everyone!

So. I have several friends that have started blogs. One of them is a doctor who is currently working down under. And yes I mean in Australia. And another friend who's blogging about going second hand. Well I thought Natalie, none of your friends have a baking blog. You should start one. So I guess this is my baking blog. I'll try to blog often and I hope people find this. I'll post recipes and my favorite baking memories. Who knows! People might find this blog and actually enjoy it! And yes, I tend to be weird on occasion. Isn't everyone?