Monday, January 3, 2011

Christmas baking - cookies

Most tasty cookies start with brown sugar, white sugar, real butter, and real vanilla.

A fun apron is also essential to a long day of baking.
I followed my cookie plan, with two additions. This is the start of Tropical Cookie Drops.
They turned out a little flat. Next time I'll add more flour. They're pictured here with the applesauce spice bars on the rack underneath.

Tropical Cookie Drops

1 1/3 C flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 C butter
1/3 C brown sugar
1/3 C white sugar
3/4 C chopped dried tropical fruits (papaya, mango, pineapple)
1/2 C coconut
1 egg
2 T milk or pineapple juice
1/2 tsp vanilla

Cream together butter, sugars, egg, milk, vanilla. Add dry ingredients. Stir in tropical fruits and coconut.

Drop rounded teaspoons 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes. Makes approx. 30 cookies.

Using parchment paper made this baking day a breeze. My sister Janice even gave me another roll for Christmas, so I can continue easy clean-up cookies!

I limited my cookie giving to 30 families this year. Nathan printed some Christmas-y tags and we taped them onto ziploc bags - super easy!
The pineapple bars with vanilla glaze were to die for, especially after sitting for 1-2 days in the fridge. The glaze soaked through the bars and made them very moist.

Pineapple Bars

2 eggs
1 1/2 C sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
20 oz. can crushed pineapple with juice
2 1/4 C flour
1 1/2 tsp soda
1 1/2 C coconut

Combine eggs, sugar and vanilla; stir in pineapple with juice. Add flour, baking soda, and coconut. Pour into a greased jelly-roll pan (I used my largest cookie sheet); bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Spread vanilla glaze over the top while still warm; cut into bars.

Vanilla Glaze

3/4 C sugar
1/4 C evaporated milk (I used 2%)
1/2 C butter
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

Mix all ingredients together; bring to a boil. Boil for 30 seconds.

The blonde brownies went horribly wrong and I thought I had wasted the ingredients. They were extremely crispy on the top crust and edges but raw inside. I ended up throwing them back in the oven after they had cooled a bit, and baked them for awhile longer. Then I immediately covered them and let them cool overnight. They turned out delicious, with a chewy but cooked middle, and just a touch of crust surrounding the chewiness. I'll never try this recipe again though, as it required a lot of fiddling.
This horrid picture didn't properly capture the caramel apple cookies. Good without frosting, delectable with. My recipe looks like this, but without raisins or nuts. Try them!
The next morning, I decided I didn't have enough cookies (because you know, ~20 dozen isn't enough), so I made one more recipe. These are chocolate chip cookies minus the chocolate chips, with PB cups. I had intended to squish the cups in the middle, but I didn't use enough flour and the cookies spread. I folded the hot cookies over the PB cups and it worked out fine, although a bit strange looking.


Jaime said...

Wow!! You're so adventurous!

The Miller Family said...

I just love you! I was looking through some of you fb pictures and reading your blog and it makes me smile! You are such an day, I WILL be a homemaker like you!!!