Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Let's Celebrate National Cookie Day


Photo courtesy of Sesame Street
 I know you just recovered from Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday/Tuesday.  You’re probably thinking there’s no need to celebrate for at least a couple of weeks.  Don’t despair, today is a day for extreme jubilation, that’s right…it’s National Cookie Day!  Woo Hoo!  COOKIES!  A day set aside to honor the tasty bite size morsel that comes in every possible flavor you can imagine.  Personally, I have never met a cookie that I didn’t like.  Okay, I’m still a little on the fence about those pink sugar wafers that have the waffle squares on the cookie.  I’ve never been a fan; they hurt the roof of my mouth and taste a bit like sugary cardboard.  That’s just my personal opinion; I suppose many people love them because they have been selling them for as long as I can remember.  Let’s talk about undisputable delicious cookies!

All Girl Scout Cookies:  Only sold once a year, any flavor of Girl Scout cookies are a sure winner!  My favorites are the Samoa.  It is hard to go wrong with a cup of coffee and a box of those babies.  My yearly order is embarrassing.  I always say, “Oh, we are going to freeze most of them.”  To this day, not a single box of them has ever seen the inside of our freezer.  It just makes me sound like less of a glutton.  My only complaint about the entire line is each year the quantity of cookies per box diminishes.

Chocolate Chip:  There are no bad chocolate chip cookies.  It is not necessary to add nuts or any other ingredients.  Just Cookie + Chocolate Chips = Perfection

White Chocolate/Macadamia:  I’m not sure who came up with this combination but they are one of my culinary heroes.  These rank very high on my favorite cookie list.  If a recipe is available for this divine treat, please do not tell me.  I do not want to know that I am capable of making them, as it would be dangerous.

Oreo:  It’s the classic All-American sandwich cookie.  Please, no double stuffing just the good old-fashioned filling.  It’s a combination you can twist, lick, and crunch.  The Oreo is one of the only cookies I eat with milk instead of coffee.

Peanut Butter Cookie:  I add this to the list for my husband.  I’m not a fan of the peanut butter cookie but it is his absolute favorite.  The women at the school cafeteria used to make the best, big, and soft with the fork tines imprint baked in each one.   

M & M Cookies:  These are similar to the chocolate chip and a must for any favorite cookie list.  They are fun and easy to make.  Since M & Ms come in colors for every season, they make great treats all year long.  There is a fine line between the perfect baking time resulting in soft chewy cookies and a couple of minutes too long and having crispy cookies.  Remember practice makes perfect!

Oatmeal Raisin:  This might not make everyone favorite list and I understand.  Call me weird but I absolutely adore oatmeal raisin cookies!  I know people often mistake them for chocolate chips and get upset when they bite into them.  I have to believe this is what led to their unfavorable ranking on people’s cookie list.  Seriously, what is not to love…it’s oatmeal and raisins with a hint of wonderful sprinkled inside of each one!

Now a drumroll…

My Very Favorite Cookie in the Entire World is THE FROSTED SUGAR COOKIE

If I ever had to choose a last meal, it would be a difficult choice.  I love many main courses from Mexican to steak and baked potatoes.  Should the choice of last cookie be put on the table, there would be no hesitation.  Give me a box of those pink frosted sugar cookies available in the bakery department of the grocery store. Yes, an entire clear plastic container full, after all it is my last meal!  It used to be they were only for sale during Valentine’s Day and Easter.  That wasn’t so bad; it was like Girl Scout cookies.  I was only tempted twice a year so I could buy them relatively guilt-free.  How does Satan or the bakers lead me straight into the depths of temptation?  They begin to bake them all year long and change the color of the frosting.  That’s right, now they come in frosting colors for Christmas, Mardi Gras, Valentine’s, Easter, St. Patrick’s, you get the idea.  They are the most delicious, melt-in-your-mouth cookie I have ever loved.  I may have to get a box to celebrate today.  After all, it’d be un-American not to celebrate a national holiday!

      Now that you know that today is an actual important day to celebrate, go grab a box or bag of your favorite cookie.  Pour a glass of ice-cold milk or a cup of hot steaming coffee and salute National Cookie Day!

**Recipes of the Day**

These recipes are features on my Pinterest “Yummy” board.

Pecan Sandies


This recipe is slightly adapted from The Sweet Life.  Beware… it makes a TON of cookies, just under 5 dozen!

·                     1 cup butter

·                     1 cup vegetable oil

·                     1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided                 

·                     1 cup powdered sugar

·                     2 eggs

·                     1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg

·                     1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

·                     4 cups all-purpose flour

·                     1 tsp. baking soda

·                     1 tsp. cream of tartar

·                     1 tsp. salt

·                     2 cups chopped pecans

·                     whole pecans

  1. Preheat oven to 375
  2. Cream butter, vegetable oil, 1 cup granulated sugar and powdered sugar until smooth.
  3. Beat in eggs one at a time; stir in nutmeg and vanilla.
  4. Fold in flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt.
  5. Mix in chopped pecans.
  6. Roll dough into 1” balls and roll each ball in remaining granulated sugar.
  7. Place cookies 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
  8. Press 1 pecan half into top of each dough ball.
  9. Bake 10 to 12 minutes, or until the edges are golden.
  10. Remove from cookie sheets to cool on wire racks.

Soft Peanut Butter Cookies

http://rachelschultz.com/

Author: Rachel Schultz

Serves: 24 cookies

Ingredients


·         ½ cup butter, softened                                                        

·         1 cup peanut butter

·         ½ cup sugar

·         ½ cup brown sugar                                                           

·         1 egg

·         1 tablespoon vanilla

·         1 teaspoon baking soda

·         1 teaspoon baking powder

·         1 teaspoon salt

·         1 and ½ cups flour

Instructions

1.       Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2.       In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and peanut butter.

3.       Add sugars and continue to beat for 2 minutes.

4.       Add egg, vanilla, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, continuing to mix.

5.       Slowly incorporate flour, continuing to beat until a fluffy dough forms.

6.       Shape dough into 1 and ½ inch balls.

7.       Slightly flatten and arrange on a lined baking sheet, with cookies 2 inches apart from one another.

8.       Bake for 8-9 minutes.

***Disclaimer ***I have not made the following recipe.  Not because I don’t desperately want to try them, but because woe be unto to me if I ever learn that I can actually make them myself.

Perfect Frosted Sugar Cookies


Ingredients

·         2 1/2 cups cake flour

·         2 tsp. cornstarch

·         1 1/2 tsp. baking powder

·         1/4 tsp. salt

·         1/2 cup salted butter, at room temperature

·         1/4 cup all vegetable shortening (unflavored), at room temperature

·         1 cup granulated sugar  

·         1 large egg
                                                                                     
·         1 large egg white

·         2 tsp. vanilla extract

·         1/2 tsp. almond extract

·         1 recipe Vanilla Frosting, recipe follows

·          

Vanilla Frosting

·          

·         1/3 cup salted butter, at room temperature

·         2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

·         1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

·         2 1/2 - 3 Tbsp. half-and-half

·         food coloring, optional

 

Directions

   Sift flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl, then whisk it just a few times, set  to the  side.  In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, on medium speed, whip together butter, shortening and  sugar until very pale and fluffy, about 4 minutes, scrapping down the sides of the bowl as needed.      Add in egg and mix until combined, then add egg white, vanilla and almond extract and mix until combine.  With mixer running, slowly add in dry ingredients and mix just until combine.  Transfer dough to an airtight container and refrigerate 2 hours.  Preheat oven to 375 during the last 10 minutes of refrigeration.

Scoop dough out a scant 1/4 cup at a time and roll into a ball.  Place dough ball on a lightly floured surface, sprinkle top lightly with flour, then using something flat and smooth (such as the storage container lid), press and evenly flatten dough to 1/2" thick (so you should have about a 2 2/3" - 2 3/4 " circular cookie).  Transfer flattened dough to a Silpat or buttered cookie sheet and repeat process with remaining dough (you'll have to use 2 cookie sheets).  Bake in preheated oven 9 - 11 minutes.  Allow to cool 5 minutes on baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool.  Cool completely then frost with Vanilla Frosting (note that frosting begins to set quickly so if you are adding sprinkles, sprinkle each cookie immediately after frosting it, don't frost the whole batch of cookies then try to sprinkle them because the sprinkles won’t stick).

Vanilla Frosting

Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl, using an electric hand mixer, whip until frosting is smooth and fluffy.  Mix in food coloring if desired (note: I finally figured out how to get a good pink with your average grocery store food coloring, I put like 8-10 drops red and the faintest amount of blue - be careful if you do this though, it's nowhere near a full drop.  You’d want to touch it to your clean finger and then swipe it in.  Random tip but thought I'd share, I never like the hot pink hue I used to get.  The tiny bit of blue just tones and cools it down a bit).  It's also fun to color coordinate, frost, and sprinkle these cookie according to the nearest holiday.

***Pet Tip of the Day**

Celebrate National Cookie Day with your best friend!

Homemade Tasty Dog Cookies


Ingredients: 
1/2 cups water
1/2 cup oil
2 eggs
4 tablespoons peanut butter
2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/2 oats

Blend water, oil, eggs, and vanilla together.  In a separate bowl, whisk flour, cornmeal, and oats together and then pour into wet mixture.  Now add the peanut butter and mix all ingredients until you form a ball of dough.  Roll out and shape.  Put onto a non-stick lightly greased cookie tray.  Cook 20 minutes at 400 F. Turn off oven and allow the biscuits to cool in oven until crisp and hard.  Store in an airtight container.

Makes approx. 3 1/2 dozen treats with a 3-inch cookie cutter.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No comments :

Post a Comment

I'd love to hear from you! Bark back!