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Cookie recipes for holidays and other pleasantries


Pingo
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I could find out what a Rolo is using google, but... 

 

Cloves are from the devil, that ain't no lie.

 

The great google brain failed me when I asked it, "Cloves Why are they evil?"

 

(It did cough up answers, more than several having to do with RPGs, just not relevant answers. So...)

 

Pingo? Rhombus? a little help...

 

...Why are cloves evil?  :huh:

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I could find out what a Rolo is using google, but... 

 

Cloves are from the devil, that ain't no lie.

 

The great google brain failed me when I asked it, "Cloves Why are they evil?"

 

(It did cough up answers, more than several having to do with RPGs, just not relevant answers. So...)

 

Pingo? Rhombus? a little help...

 

...Why are cloves evil?  :huh:

 

"Because they are a potent and insidious flavor, and difficult to use correctly in recipes," I am told.

 

And yet they are used in recipes. 

 

I dunno. Y'got me. But then, I can't bake cookies to save my life.

 

Lobster Thermidor? Been there. Baked Alaska? Done that. Pretty much any sort of grilled meat? Not a problem. But a cohesive, tasty chocolate chip cookie...?

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Somewhere around 1995 I noticed that the texture of my beloved Oreos seemed somewhat different, and to my horror I discovered that Nabisco had changed the filling recipe and was now using partially hydrogenated vegetable oils.

 

Now even back in the '90s there was information about how horrifically bad trans fats were for organic life forms, and I had sworn off them completely, particularly since we were starting a family.

 

Giving up Oreos was perhaps the most difficult part of that.

 

So I came up with a substitute recipe.

 

The chocolate wafers crumbled and mixed with melted butter make an incredible pie crust.

 

The filling is a bit richer than Oreos'. I added the powdered milk to give it that slightly gritty texture.

 

I am pretty sure my recipe is nothing like Nabisco's.

 

Chocolate wafers

 

4 ounces unsweetened or bittersweet chocolate, melted and slightly cooled

8 ounces softened unsalted butter

3/4 cup sugar

1 large egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 1/2 cups sifted all-puropse flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

cocoa powder

 

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or by your favorite method and allow to cool a bit.

 

Sift together the flour and salt. Or just whisk the salt into the bowl of flour.

 

Cream together the butter and sugar.

 

Add the egg and vanilla to the butter mix and cream until fluffy.

 

Stir in the flour in.

 

Add the melted chocolate and mix until smoothly blended.

 

Optional: Wrap the dough and chill an hour or more. It makes it a little easier to work with.

 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius).

 

Roll out the dough thinly, about 1/8 inch thick, using cocoa powder instead of flour to keep the rolling surface and rolling pin from sticking. Cut into rounds or (my lazy preference) diagonal lozenges.

 

The cocoa powder is slightly stickier than flour, but will intensify the flavor instead of diluting it. It will also embed in the cookies' surface and make them much darker.

 

Transfer the cut cookies gently with a spatula to prepared cookie sheets.

 

Bake 13 - 16 minutes.

 

ETA: Whoops, and here's the filling:

 

Creamy Sort-Of Oreo But Better Sandwich Cookie Filling

 

8 ounces softened unsalted butter

2 cups confectioners sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla paste (better)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon milk

1 cup powdered milk

 

Cream the butter until smooth. Add the other ingredients and cream until blended. Wrap and chill.

 

Use to make sandwich cookies out of the chocolate wafers, above.

Edited by Pingo
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This is, hands-down, my personal favorite Christmas cookie.

 

My grandmother called them "Mexican Wedding Cakes", but so far as I know they aren't, really. They are light, crumbly balls of pecan goodness that melt in your mouth. Inevitably a few disintegrate in the making, and Chef's Privilege means I get the pieces. :)

 

 

In college one day one of my housemates came in while I was baking and asked what I was making. 

 

"Cookies," I said. 

 

"What kind?" he asked. 

 

Thinking it was obvious I said "What do they look like?"

 

He looked over at the little round balls with brown bits and said "Cat food". 

 

And thus they have been "cat food cookies" ever since. 

 

 

I don't understand why more guys don't bake. Baking is easy.  You get a recipe with precise measurements, times, temperatures, and instructions.  It's not like cooking where doneness is a guess and seasoning is by taste. 

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I could find out what a Rolo is using google, but... 

 

 

Cloves are from the devil, that ain't no lie.

 

 

The great google brain failed me when I asked it, "Cloves Why are they evil?"

 

(It did cough up answers, more than several having to do with RPGs, just not relevant answers. So...)

 

Pingo? Rhombus? a little help...

 

...Why are cloves evil?  :huh:

Cloves get overused in Christmas cooking. They have a strong, repellent spicy flavor. Clove oil is an anesthetic, and some of us do not like that numbing feeling in our food. Clove oil is also a paint thinner, and was used in the Renaissance before turpentine was commonly available. I have, in fact, painted using it, and while the smell can be pleasant, I am not fond of the flavor.

 

Allspice has a not dissimilar, but more mellow flavor without the medicinal qualities. My rule of thumb is that anything with cloves is better served with allspice, unless you are looking for a paint thinner or a toothache cure.

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This is the variation of chocolate chip cookie we make most around here. My husband likes a soft, high-domed cake-like chocolate chip cookie, which is what this produces.

 

Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

 

3 1/8 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

8 ounces softened unsalted butter

1 1/2 cup minus two tablespoons sugar

1/4 cup molasses

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 large eggs

3 or more cups semisweet chocolate chips, preferably of two different brands

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit (190 degrees Celsius).

 

Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt.

 

Cream the butter, sugar, and molasses until blended. Add the eggs and beat until fluffy. If you have a countertop mixer, let it go for five minutes or more until it is really light and fluffy. The fluffier the better.

 

Stir in the flour mixture.

 

Stir in the chips. The amount varies here, but the effect you're looking for is "chocolate barely held together by dough." Using two different brands gives more interesting variations of flavor.

 

Drop by spoonfuls onto prepared (parchment paper is okay, but not greased) cookie sheets. Bake for roughly eight minutes or until the edges just begin to color and you think they aren't done quite yet.

 

Cool on racks.

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My favorite choco chip cookie comes on the back of the Ghirardelli semi-sweet choco chips. Num. I use

1/2 semi sweet, 1/2 dark chocolate Ghirardelli chips. This produces a gooey, chewy cookie.

 

If you find your choco chip cookies spread too much, your butter is too warm. Chill the dough before baking. I let mine chill over night, this allows for the flavors to meld, making a very rich cookie.

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This is, hands-down, my personal favorite Christmas cookie.

 

My grandmother called them "Mexican Wedding Cakes", but so far as I know they aren't, really. They are light, crumbly balls of pecan goodness that melt in your mouth. Inevitably a few disintegrate in the making, and Chef's Privilege means I get the pieces. :)

 

 

In college one day one of my housemates came in while I was baking and asked what I was making. 

 

"Cookies," I said. 

 

"What kind?" he asked. 

 

Thinking it was obvious I said "What do they look like?"

 

He looked over at the little round balls with brown bits and said "Cat food". 

 

And thus they have been "cat food cookies" ever since. 

 

 

I don't understand why more guys don't bake. Baking is easy.  You get a recipe with precise measurements, times, temperatures, and instructions.  It's not like cooking where doneness is a guess and seasoning is by taste. 

 

 

That last part is exactly why I don't bake. I tend to cook rather improvisationally, tossing whatever seems right into the pot. I have a pretty good feel for doneness and I can adjust on the fly by taste and feel. It works great for braises, soups, salads, etc, but not so much for baked goods.

 

I even have an exception for fruit pies, since I have a crust recipe I like, and the fruit filling can be whatever I feel like at the moment. I tell people that I don't bake, but I would gladly roast them a pie. :upside:

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Because there are always extra candy canes:

 

Candy Cane Sugar Cookies
 
Ingredients
 
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
1/4 teaspoon baking soda 
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt 
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), at room temperature 
3/4 cup sugar 
1 large egg 
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2-3 crushed candy canes
 
Directions
 
1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
2. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until smooth. Add the egg and beat until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the vanilla.
3. With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture, mixing until just incorporated (the dough will be stiff). 
3. Shape into a disk and refrigerate, wrapped, for at least 1 hour and up to 3 days. 
4. Heat oven to 350° F. 
5. On a floured surface, roll out each disk ¼ inch thick. 
6. Cut into shapes and place on parchment-lined baking sheets. 
7. Decorate cookies with crushed candy pieces. Gently press candy into the cookie dough. 
8. Bake until just beginning to brown, 12 to 15 minutes.
 
Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.
Edited by Inarah
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Mmm, cookies. My family's chocolate chip recipe started out life as the Mrs. Fields Chocolate Chip recipe, but has long since morphed into its own thing. It's also the most tetchy recipe I've ever dealt with; if the margarine isn't juuuuust the right temperature, they turn into pancakes. If they're mixed even 30 seconds too long, they turn out tough. If they are over/underbaked by even a minute, they still turn out okay, but not the best. But when everything comes together and the stars align...they're something magical.  :wub:

 

Hmm, I guess I can contribute something to this awesome holiday cookies thread. :) This is one of my family's traditional Christmas goody recipes, and it makes a TON of cookies! 

 

CHOCOLATE ANDES MINT COOKIES

 

Makes approximately 80 cookies.

 

3/4 cups butter or margarine (I use margarine)

1 1/2 cups brown sugar (tightly packed)

2 tbsp. water

2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 eggs

2½ cups flour

1 1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

~2 boxes Andes Mints (original mint flavor) 

 

1. In a saucepan over low heat, cook butter, brown sugar, and water, constantly stirring, until melted.

2. Add chocolate and stir until partially melted. Remove from completely from heat and stir until all melted. Pour into large bowl and let cool for 10 minutes.

3. With hand mixer, beat in eggs one at a time. Add dry ingredients, beating until blended. Chill for 1 hour.

4. Roll tsp. of dough into balls, placing them about 1.5" from each other so they don't turn into a single sheet of cookie.

5. Bake at 350° for 12-13 minutes (cookies will crisp as they cool).

6. Remove from oven and IMMEDIATELY place one mint on each cookie. Allow mint to soften (the first one placed should be ready by the time you've placed the last one, it's very quick), then turn mint over with a knife and use the knife to give the melted mint a gentle swirl over most of the top of cookie.

7. Remove cookies from pan after the mints have hardened. Keep refrigerated (they aren't very good warm).

 

NOTE: If you find you don't have enough mints, you can snap each mint in half and put half a mint on each cookie. Not nearly as good, but FAR better than the cookie with no mint on it.

 

Huzzah!

--OneBoot :D

Edited by OneBoot
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