Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas Cookies

I try to make a few new Christmas Cookie recipes every year.  This year I got a sprtiz gun so I used a regular spritz cookie out of the recipe book that came with the gun and then I also make these smores grahams.  They were very good.  One tip I would suggest is to use a flatter shape so they don't turn over when you put them back in the oven.

Smores Spritz Cookies


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 24 mini marshmallows
  • 2-4 ounces chopped semisweet chocolate

  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, graham cracker crumbs, cinnamon, and salt.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until light and creamy, about 2-3 minutes. Beat in the egg and vanilla (the dough may look curdled - keep going). Gradually beat in the flour mixture.
  4. Fill a cookie press with the dough* and press out shapes onto the cookie sheets. Bake 8-11 minutes or until golden brown and firm. Cool for 1 minute then remove to a cooling rack.
  5. Once the cookies are completely cool, place half of the cookies on a cookie sheet, flat side up. Top with 1 mini marshmallow. Place under a broiler until marshmallows are puffed and toasted. Immediately top with the remaining cookies, flat side down, to form sandwiches. Cool.
  6. Melt 2 ounces chocolate in a narrow yet deep enough bowl or cup for dunking. Dip half of each cookie into the chocolate. If needed, melt the remaining chocolate. Let harden before serving. Store in an airtight container (if chocolate starts to melt, store in the refrigerator).

*Spritz cookie dough needs to be really soft and slightly sticky in order to work. If you feel that your dough is too soft, chill in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes.
Not ready to give up the lemon phase quite yet, I also make these.  They were better than the other recipe I tried, I liked the icing, but still I'm not sure I would make them again.  I used lemon heads because that is what I had on hand.
The Cookie Jar – Lemon Drop Cookies
Serves: 5 dozen
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1½ c butter/shortening (I used ½ c butter and 1 c shortening)
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp lemon extract
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1½ tsp soda
  • 1½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • finely chopped zest of 1 lemon
  • 6 oz. package crushed lemon drops
  • 1 cup powdered sugar (I doubled this)
  • juice of 1 lemon (double)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Cream sugar and shortening in your mixer with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy.
  3. Add eggs and flavoring and blend well.
  4. Sift dry ingredients and gradually add to wet mixture.
  5. Add lemon zest and crushed lemon drops.
  6. Roll in balls, flatten with a fork.
  7. Bake on parchment paper for 10-12 minutes.
  8. Whisk together powdered sugar and lemon juice to make a glaze.
  9. Cool 1-2 minutes, brush with glaze.
I used my favorite oatmeal peanut butter cookie recipe to make the reese's peanut butter cup in the mini muffin pan recipe.  The cookie is not as sturdy as the original recipe so I found them to be a bit crumblier, but they still did come out good.  I baked them at a lower temp (350) but baked closer to 15 minutes.

Monday, December 15, 2014

I entered into the Great American Cookie Swap this year.  I received red velvet peppermint cookies which my husband who is a mint an, loved.  They came fresh and soft which really added to them.  I also received a dark chocolate, dried cranberry, pistatio cookie.  They were also lovely and my oldest son was a big fan.  I made Lemon Crinkle Cookies from Lauren's Latest.  I hope that my guest bloggers enjoyed them.  They were not a favorite with my family.  I would not make them again.  They turned out ok, but I have other lemon cookies that I prefer in taste.  I admit to forgetting to take a picture.  But I can say that they looked in comparison to Lauren's.


½ cups Butter, Softened
1 cup Granulated Sugar
½ teaspoons Vanilla Extract
1 whole Egg
1 teaspoon Lemon Zest
1 Tablespoon Fresh Lemon Juice
¼ teaspoons Salt
¼ teaspoons Baking Powder
⅛ teaspoons Baking Soda
1-½ cup All-purpose Flour
½ cups Powdered Sugar


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease light colored baking sheets with non stick cooking spray and set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Whip in vanilla, egg, lemon zest and juice. Scrape sides and mix again. Stir in all dry ingredients slowly until just combined, excluding the powdered sugar. Scrape sides of bowl and mix again briefly. Pour powdered sugar onto a large plate. Roll a heaping teaspoon of dough into a ball and roll in powdered sugar. Place on baking sheet and repeat with remaining dough.
Bake for 9-11 minutes or until bottoms begin to barely brown and cookies look matte {not melty or shiny}. Remove from oven and cool cookies about 3 minutes before transferring to cooling rack.
*If using a non stick darker baking tray, reduce baking time by about 2 minutes.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Cashew Clusters

Other than the fact that I burned my hand on the carmel and melted the spoon in the caramel because of it, these turned out wonderful.  I will definetely make again.

Cook 1 1/2 cups sugar in a saucepan over medium heat, swirling the pan but not stirring, until dark amber, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in 2 tablespoons butter and 3 cups salted cashews. Pour onto an oiled baking sheet and separate into small clusters with 2 forks. Let harden.

Note: I used 1 bag of Wegmans cashews.

From Food Network magazine

Molasses with Crystalized Ginger

These cookies were very good (but LEAVE OUT the crystalized ginger).  It was much too spicy for our taste.

Ultimate Ginger Cookies (from

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup unsulfured molasses
  • 1 extra-large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups chopped crystallized ginger (6 ounces)
  • Granulated sugar, for rolling the cookies
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 sheet pans with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, and salt and then combine the mixture with your hands. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the brown sugar, oil, and molasses on medium speed for 5 minutes. Turn the mixer to low speed, add the egg, and beat for 1 minute. Scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula and beat for 1 more minute. With the mixer still on low, slowly add the dry ingredients to the bowl and mix on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add the crystallized ginger and mix until combined.
Scoop the dough with 2 spoons or a small ice cream scoop. With your hands, roll each cookie into a 1 3/4-inch ball and then flatten them lightly with your fingers. Press both sides of each cookie in granulated sugar and place them on the sheet pans. Bake for exactly 13 minutes. The cookies will be crackled on the top and soft inside. Let the cookies cool on the sheets for 1 to 2 minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Nutter Butter Truffles

The vote is in that the family still prefers oreo truffles.  But they are good.

Reese’s Nutter Butter Cookie Truffles RecipeIngredients:16 ounces Nutter Butter Cookies
8 ounces cream cheese
8 ounces Reese’s Mini Peanut Butter Cups, each one quartered
12 ounces milk chocolate chips [I needed more than this - I had about 10 balls left uncoated].
3/4 tablespoon shortening
1 tablespoon sprinkles (optional for top)
Directions:Blend the Nutter Butter cookies in a food processor until they are fine crumbs. Then break up the cream cheese into chunks and blend that together with the crumbs in the food processor until well blended. Remove blade or transfer dough to another bowl. Gently fold in the quartered Reese’s peanut butter cups. I used the very small mini Reese’s that come unwrapped. Roll into 1 inch balls and place on a cookie sheet lined with waxed paper or parchment paper. Stick in the freezer for about 30 to 40 minutes.
Melt the chocolate chips and shortening in a microwave safe bowl stirring every 30 seconds until smooth.
Dip the frozen balls into the melted chocolate. Cover them completely with chocolate, then lift up and gently tap to remove the excess chocolate. I used a plastic fork with the two middle tines broken out. Set back onto the cookie sheet covered in waxed paper. Immediately add the sprinkles before the chocolate sets up. The chocolate will set up quickly because the balls are so cold from being in the freezer.
Makes about 35 to 40 truffles