Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Joanna Pruess's Molasses Spice Cookies

from Carole Walter's Great Cookies cookbook

¾ c (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter
2 c all purpose flour, spooned and leveled
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
¾ tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cloves
2 c sugar, divided
¼ c dark molasses
1 lg egg

Melt butter in a heavy duty saucepan over low heat. (This cookie is mixed by hand in the pot). Cool to tepid.
Strain together 3 times- flour, soda, cinnamon, ginger, salt, and cloves. Set aside.
Using a wooden spoon, stir 1 ½ c of the sugar, molasses, and egg into the butter, mixing until smooth.
Add dry ingredients, ½ at a time and blend well.
Cover with wax paper and chill for 30-45 minutes until firm.
Position shelves in upper and lower third of oven. Heat to 375. Moderately butter cookie sheets.
Shape dough into 1 in balls between palms of hands.
Place remaining ½ c sugar in a shallow dish and roll the balls of dough in sugar.
Place balls 2 inches apart on cookie sheets. Bake 8-10 minutes or until tops begin to crack. Toward end of baking time rotate pans from top to bottom and front to back.
Remove from oven and let stand 2-3 minutes.

Datenut Pinwheels

These have always been one of my favorites at Christmas time. I realize the dates might scare you off if you've never had anything with dates (I haven't had anything else with dates so I am not sure how they are in other things) but these are great. I've had them every year since I can remember and as I said above, they're one of my very favorites!

Mix thoroughly:

½ c shortening
1c brown sugar
1 egg
½ tsp vanilla

1 ¾ c flour
½ tsp baking soda

Divide dough into 2 equal parts.
Tear off a piece of wax paper for each half. Roll each piece on top of the wax paper into rectangle 11 in x 7 in. (you will be rolling the dough up in the wax paper so don't skip this)

For the Filling, cook ingredients below in a saucepan until thickened, stirring constantly:

¾ lb moist pitted dates cut up (I get the already cut dates that come in a purple box, way
easier than trying to cut sticky dates!)
1/3 c sugar
1/3 c water

Once thickened, stir in:
1/2 c finely chopped nuts (I like pecans)

It will look like this when thickened:

Spread 1/2 of the filling on each dough piece and spread out. Roll up the dough.

Next roll the wax paper around the dough to enclose it. Twist ends of wax paper and refrigerate for several hours.

Heat oven to 400 and cut into 1/4" slices.
Place on lightly greased baking sheet and bake 10 minutes or until lightly golden.

You can bake as many as you want and store the rest in the wax paper. It also freezes very well in the wax paper.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Sugar Cookies

The nutmeg and sour cream in this recipe makes it my favorite for sugar cookies!

3 1/4 c. flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 c. butter
1 c. sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. sour cream

Sift together first five (dry) ingredients. Cream together remaining five ingredients. Mix dry ingredients into wet. Chill in refrigerator for 3-4 hours. Roll out to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut into shapes. Bake at 350 ° F for 9 minutes.

These cookies are even more amazing with cream cheese frosting, but any kind will do!

I'm not sure where the recipe originates, but I received it from my friend, Melissa Landon.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Pumpkin Pie Bars

from Kraft
I've been trying some recipes from my cookbook that I haven't tried in years, in attempt to toss the recipes I don't really care much about and cut down on recipes.
Since this is another pumpkin recipe, and I don't go crazy over pumpkin for the most part, I thought this recipe would get the ax once I made them and tried them again, but... they made the cut. They were good. I ate more than I thought I would. Good combination of flavors...and from Kraft-- who knew?

1 1/3 cups flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar, divided
1 1/2 sticks cold butter or margarine
1 cup old-fashioned or quick-cooking oats, uncooked
1/2 cup chopped pecans
8 oz cream cheese, softened
3 eggs
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice

Preheat to 350°F. Line 13x9-inch pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides; grease foil. Mix flour, 1/4 granulated sugar and brown sugar in medium bowl; cut in butter with pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in oats and nuts.
Reserve 1 cup oat mixture; press remaining onto bottom of prepared pan. Bake 15 min.
Beat cream cheese, remaining ½ c sugar, eggs, pumpkin and spice on medium speed until well blended. Pour over crust; sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture.
Bake 25 min; cool 10 min. Use foil to transfer dessert from pan to wire rack; cool completely

Mexican Wedding Cookies

Recipe from Creative Cooking Collection.

1 cup butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar, divided
2 cups flour, divided
2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup pecans, ground

Beat butter and 1/2 cup powdered sugar until light and fluffy. Add 1 cup flour, vanilla, and salt. Stir in remaining flour and nuts with spoon.

Form dough into ball, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate 1 hour or until firm.

Preheat oven to 350 ° F. Roll tablespoons of dough into 1-inch balls; place 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until pale golden brown. Let cookies stand on cookie sheets 2 minutes.

Place 1 cup powdered sugar in 9X13 dish. Transfer hot cookies to dish and roll in sugar, coating well. Let cookies cool in sugar. Sift remaining 1/2 cup powdered sugar over sugar-coated cookies before serving.

Store tightly at room temperature or freeze up to 1 month. Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Pumpkin Cake Roll

One of my all-time favorite holiday treats!
Recipe from The Essential Mormon Cookbook.

3 eggs
1 c. sugar
2/3 c. pumpkin
1 tsp. lemon juice
3/4 c. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. powdered sugar
1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese
4 Tbs. butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Beat eggs and sugar together. Add pumpkin and lemon juice and mix together. In a separate bowl sift together flour, baking powder, spices, and salt. Fold into pumpkin mixture.

Line a 15 x 10 1/2 inch pan with waxed paper. Grease lightly. Spread pumpkin mixture evenly in pan. Bake at 375 ° F for about 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Turn out immediately onto a clean towel sprinkled with powdered sugar, removing waxed paper. Sprinkle more powdered sugar on top of cake. Start at on end, carefully rolling towel and cake together. Cool on counter top.
Combine the 1 cup powdered sugar, cream cheese, butter and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Gently unroll cake, removing towel. Spread cream cheese filling over top. Roll back up. [Note: After you roll the cake up with the filling, place it seam side down. I didn't really think about it when I made it, but I think it would be prettier that way.] Cover with waxed paper and chill in refrigerator. Best when made a day ahead. Will keep in refrigerator 6 to 10 days (well wrapped). Freezes well. Cut cake roll into slices using a bread knife. Makes approximately 20 servings.

Friday, December 3, 2010

A Christmas twist on Chocolate Chip Cookies

This is my Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe, and the main reason Dalyce invited me to be part of this blog. :)  Anyway at Christmas I like to replace the chocolate chips with chopped up candy cane kisses.  I have actually never done nuts with the kisses so I don't know how that would be. I hope you like it!

1 ½  C shortening                                          
¾ C sugar                                                         
1 ½ C brown sugar                                            
1 ½ tsp vanilla                                                  
3 well-beaten eggs                                            
3 1/2 C flour
 1 ½ tsp soda
 1 ½ tsp salt 
 3 C chocolate chips
 ½ C nuts, chopped (Optional)

Cream together shortening both sugars, add vanilla.  Beat until light and fluffy.  Fold in eggs and mix well.
Sift together flour, soda, & salt.  Add to first mixture and stir in chips and nuts.  Mix well, drop 1 spoonful on ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake at 375 for 10 min.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

December Theme

Most people are planning on doing some holiday baking. What are your favorites?