Monday, January 5, 2009

A handful of cookies...

The traditional Gingerbread house- this year my 5 year old did the decorating all by herself!  It's hard to see but there's a Christmas tree inside.

I honestly didn't go overboard on the cookies this year.  Kind of sad to skip tradition.  Here's peanut brittle, lemon squares (Mom's recipe), and Rose Levy Beranbaum's Chocolate Walnut Chews...a base of oatmeal cookie dough strewn with walnuts and dark chocolate, then blanketed with caramel and melded in the oven to something greater than the sum of its parts.

Close up on the chews...these are good keepers, too.  Good for about 2 weeks.

The brittle.  

Well, guess I didn't get a pic of the decorated cutouts-- but if you ever need a third hand to fill a piping bag with icing, use this trick (it's in a pint glass, before the end is snipped off).

One of my personal favorites are Vanilla Buttercreams.  It's a melt in your mouth (but crisp to the bite) vanilla scented shortbread round, sandwiched with luxurious vanilla scented butter cream filling- kissed with rum.

The dough is:  process, roll, chill, slice, and bake.  Easy peasy!  They don't look like much, but if you like sticking your finger in the bowl after creaming the butter, sugar, and vanilla...these are for you.

The Family Tradition:  Mormor's Swedish Pepperkakor.  They are subtle but everyone loves them.  They have to be thin.  So thin that you seem to have as much dough left after cutting the cookies as before rolling it out.

Baked, with minimal adornment.

They are molasses spice cookies.  So crispy and tender you just shatter them on the roof of your mouth with your tongue.  Goes great with coffee, tea, milk, red wine...  They are the cookie that eats like a chip.

My Aunt Carol gets them even thinner.  Don't ask me how!

Perfect cookie baking weather, eh?

No comments: