Sunday, December 23, 2012

Favorite Holiday Cookies & Candies

This is a lengthy post.  I have compiled a list of the top cookie and breakfast recipes that my family loves.  Some of them are tried and true holiday favorites, some of them are modifications on traditional recipes that my family loves.  All of them are fairly easy and the results consistently good.

Chocolate Crinkles
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 squares unsweetened chocolate (4 oz) melted
2 cups granulated sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup powdered sugar

Mix oil, chocolate and sugar until well mixed.  add vanilla. Mix dry ingredients and then add to chocolate mixture.  Chill dough overnight.  Heat oven to 350. With cookie scoop (mini Ice Cream scooper) dip out balls of dough and place in a bowl full of powdered sugar.  Swirl dough in sugar until covered.  Place on well greased cookie sheet.  Dough is very sticky and easier to work with cold.  It will stick to your hands if you roll it by hand.  Place 2 inches apart.  Bake 10-12 minutes until almost no imprint shows when lightly touched in center.  Let cookies cool for a few minutes on sheet before placing on cooling rack.  These are delicious and taste like chocolate cake.  I usually double this recipe

Peppermint Snowballs

·         1  cup  butter, softened
·         3/4  cup  confectioners' sugar
·         1  teaspoon  vanilla
·         1/4  teaspoon  salt
·         1/4  cups  all-purpose flour
·         1/2  cup  quick-cooking oats
·         , 8 candy canes crushed (heaping 1/4 cup)
·           Red food coloring
·           Confectioners' sugar for rolling
1.Heat oven to 400°F. In large bowl, with mixer on high, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in vanilla and salt. Reduce mixer speed to low, and beat in flour (dough will be very dry). Beat in oats, mints, and 12 drops of red food coloring. Shape heaping teaspoons of dough into balls, place on ungreased baking sheets 1/2 inch apart, and bake 15 to 18 minutes per batch.
2. Place confectioners' sugar in large bowl. Roll hot cookies in confectioners' sugar, let cool completely, and repeat.

1 cup shortening (part butter or margarine)
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 3/4 cups flour
2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
cinnamon and sugar for coating

Hear oven to 400 degrees.  Mix shortening, sugar and eggs thoroughly.  Measure flour by dipping method.  Mix all dry ingredients in another bowl and then add to creamed mixture.  Refrigerate 1 hour.  Roll into 1 inch balls,  then roll into cinnamon sugar.  Place 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheet.  Bake 8-10 minutes.  These cookies puff up at first, then flatten out when cooled.

Peanut Butter Blossoms

1/ 2 cup shortning (1/2 butter or margarine)
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Heat oven to 375.   Mix shortening, sugars, eggs and peanut butter together until well blended.  Measure flour by dipping method.  Mix all dry ingredients together.  Add to creamed mixture.  Chill dough 1 hour.  Roll dough into 1 1/4 inch balls, then roll in granulated sugar.  Place 3 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake 10-12 minutes.  Allow to cool 2 minutes on cookie sheet, press unwrapped Hershey Kiss or Hug into center of cookie.  Transfer to cooling rack and allow them to set for a few hours.  Kiss will melt, and then resolidify in cookie.  Do not disturb cookies until chocolate had hardened again.  I usually double this recipe.

Chocolate Croissants
Take a can of croissant dough and roll it out.  Press pre cut seams together and then cut rectangles into squares.  Fill each croissant with a teaspoon of chocolate chips.  Fold four corners of croissant into the middle and form a little pouch.  Bake as instructed on can.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve.  Makes 8 croissants.

Creme Brulee French Toast  

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup
  • 6 French bread slices
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon brandy-based orange liqueur (such as Grand Marnier or Triple Sec)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
1.     Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Mix in brown sugar and corn syrup, stirring until         sugar is dissolved. Pour into a 9x13 inch baking dish.
2.     Remove crusts from bread, and arrange in the baking dish in a single layer. In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, half and half, vanilla extract, orange brandy, and salt. Pour over the bread. Cover, and chill at least 8 hours, or overnight.
3.     Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Remove the dish from the refrigerator, and bring to room temperature.
4.     Bake uncovered 35 to 40 minutes in the preheated oven, until puffed and lightly browned. 

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