12 Days of Cookies! The Last Day!!!

Guys, it’s the last day of the 12 days of Cookies! I’m a bit sad, especially since today I got an awesome secret Santa gift, 4 mason jars filled with 4 different types of cookies!!! I’ll still post them, so not to worry. The sweets I’ve made this Christmas season have been filled with peppermint, and I will seal this cookie event with a kiss, a peppermint kiss to be exact! This starts off with first making some sugar cookie dough, which is the new way I’ll be making those, I could NOT stop eating the dough! . On to the recipe before I get myself in trouble.

Peppermint Kiss Cookie
I first saw the recipe found here

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Ingredients:
1 ½ cups powdered sugar
1 ¼ cups butter, softened
1 tsp peppermint extract (optional, I didn’t use this and they were pretty spectacular)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg
3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ cup finely chopped candy cane Kisses
About 30 unwrapped Hershey Candy Cane Kisses

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. Mix together flour, baking soda and salt.
3. In a separate mixing bowl combine the powdered sugar, butter, extracts and egg, mix until creamy. Add the flour mixture and mix until blended (it may be a bit crumbly) stir in the chopped kisses.
4. Shape the dough into ¾ inch balls and bake for 10-12 minutes
5. Either press the kiss immediately into the cookie from the oven, which will create a ‘puddle’ or allow to cool for several minutes and add the kiss.

**You guys may already know this, but apparently I didn’t. If the cookies are on a cooling rack it is NOT necessary to smoosh the kiss into the cookie. Several of mine did make it before I realized that it was the user (me) that the creating the giant hole in the cookie and not the cookie itself. You can simply just place the Kiss on top of the cookie while it is still warm and the chocolate will melt and bond with the cookie.**

Related Posts:
Day 1: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Day 2: Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
Day 3: Lemon Sugar Cookies
Day 4: Birthday Cookies
Day 5: Candy Cane Cookies
Day 6: Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies
Day 7: Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Day 8: Creamsicle Cookies
Day 9: Classic Spritz Cookies
Day 10: Peppermint Chocolate Chip
Day 11: Gingerbread Cookies

12 Days of Cookies! Day 11: Gingerbread Cookies

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Sorry it’s been a little while since I posted on the 12 days of cookies! This past weekend I had a couple of Christmas parties I was able to attend and finished up the last two cookies. These turned out wonderfully. I know that I say that a lot but I had never made gingerbread cookies before and was really concerned about making these. Actually guys it’s confession time, I thought I was going to have to throw all of these away honestly. The concern I had was after I added the molasses, I’ve never used molasses before and as soon as I opened up the container of it, I knew that I had never before smelled molasses before either. I’ll tell you what, I don’t like the smell of it one bit! Some people may like it, but it’s not my cup of tea, so my concern was that it was going to taste how it smelled. Well, there is something magical that happened when it was mixed with all the other ingredients and went into the oven to bake. It transformed into some of the most amazingly awesome cookies, that were so soft and chewy, a major plus when it comes to cookies. I loved them, but like I said before I have never had gingerbread cookies before, so I was unsure of how these compared to other gingerbread cookies. Not to worry ladies and gentlemen, I had these tested by several gingerbread cookie eating veterans, and ended up sending links to the original recipe to two different people! That speaks for itself!

Gingerbread Cookies
by: Annie’s Eats

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Ingredients:
4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking soda (original recipe calls for 1 ½ baking powder and ½ baking soda)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 ½ tsp cloves
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground nutmeg
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup molasses
1 large egg

Directions:
1. Whisk flour, salt, baking soda and spices. in a separate bowl cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Mix in the molasses and egg until combined. Add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Refrigerate dough for at least 1 hour.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, line baking sheet with parchment paper (I didn’t). Roll dough out onto a floured surface, this is super important otherwise the cookies will stick and become disfigured when you try and move them, to about ¼ inch thickness.

20121217-140017.jpg Cut desired shapes and place on a prepared baking sheet about 2 inches apart. I baked mine for about 7-9 minutes, the baking time will depend on the size of the cookie. After they have cooled you may decorate them if desired, I didn’t and they were still a huge hit.

Related Posts:
Day 1: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Day 2: Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
Day 3: Lemon Sugar Cookies
Day 4: Birthday Cookies
Day 5: Candy Cane Cookies
Day 6: Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies
Day 7: Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Day 8: Creamsicle Cookies
Day 9: Classic Spritz Cookies
Day 10: Peppermint Chocolate Chip
Day 12: Peppermint Kiss Cookies

‘Tis the Season

Friday morning started out with some Christmas cheer that I had hoped would lasted throughout the weekend. During my morning spinning class we did a workout that ended up with us singing the 12 days of Christmas, trust me it was fun! Friday afternoon changed the tone of the weekend, during the weekend festivities, where several of my friends work with children, or are teachers, we remember the events that had happened. We prayed for the ones that went to heaven, and asked Jesus to be with the families and community in Newtown CT, as well as with our nation as we try and process and heal from those horrific events that took place in that elementary school. To be honest, I cannot even begin to imagine what that community is going through, for me the appropriate action is to pray for them right now. “Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and seven nights. No one said a word to him, because they saw how great his suffering was” Job 2:13.

Several events took place Friday evening, the children’s ministry at my church was having a Christmas party for the leaders who volunteer, and there was lots of yummy food there! There was some kind of punch that was just so tasty; I’ll need to get the recipe for that! Two of my friends got engaged! So very excited for them, they are both just so wonderful!! 20121217-131804.jpg After that a co-worker was throwing an ugly sweater party. There was just dance on the Wii, a contest to see who had the best ugly sweater, and then an epic game of fish bowl. Having a get together with co-workers is always an adventure; I always find it interesting seeing people outside of the environment that I normally see them in. I brought some gingerbread men to both of the Christmas parties, the recipe will be posted soon!!

Saturday my cousin graduated nursing school! Yay! Go Amanda!! That evening was Christmas party

20121217-131917.jpg actually another ugly sweater party, and I created mine for the evening.

20121217-132009.jpg There was massive amounts of food to snack on (I made some peppermint sugar blossoms, the recipe will be posted tomorrow), games of pool being played and even some piano playing going on! We all brought a white elephant gift

20121217-132109.jpg we could not buy anything for this gift exchange, it had to be something that was around the house, played guess the Christmas carol from pictures. The first game we played as a group reminded me of hot potato or musical chairs. There was a gift that had 20 layers of wrapping paper and under each layer was a gift. Music was played and whoever had the gift when the music stopped got to open a layer and keep the gift, I got a pack of 35 pirate tattoos!

Sunday was a bit more laid back compared to the rest of the weekend. A few friends came over for appetizers and games. Bananagrams is a staple for these get togethers;

20121217-132253.jpg when we play there are no inappropriate words, so we tried saying fat wasn’t appropriate. It didn’t work, there is however one person who is the master of all board/card/word games and her name is Natalie. It doesn’t matter if it is the first time she has ever played a particular game or not, she will win the majority of the matches! So there was bananagrams, which if you’ve never played and enjoy scrabble or other word games you need to try this, Uno, Blink, and finally Rumi. Went to church that evening and then had a relaxing rest of the night and watched the Carebear Nutcracker Suite. Just enough time to unwind and get ready for the upcoming week!

12 Days of Cookies! Day 10 Peppermint Chocolate Chip

I used the original Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe with just a couple of changes for the holidays. Nestle came out with some really festive morsels, they were the regular chocolate color but there were also red and green ones too!! This really got me thinking about Christmas and how just a little change thing can make something from everyday to holiday! When I think of Christmas one of the things that comes to my mind is candy canes. So below is mostly the Nestle recipe with just two small changes.

Peppermint Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Ingredients:
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter softened
¾ cup granulated sugar
¾ cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 large eggs
2 cups (12 oz.) chocolate chips
5 candy canes, crushed

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. In a medium bowl cream together the butter and sugars. Add in the vanilla extract and the eggs and mix until well blended. In a separate bowl mix together the salt, baking soda and flour, then slowly add this mixture to the butter mixture, mix until blended.
3. Crush 5 candy canes, I broke mine into pieces and then used the blender to completely crush them into a powder. Fold in the chocolate chips and the candy cane.

20121211-205819.jpg I loved the peppermint dust!!
4. Bake for 6-10 minutes, let cool for 2 minutes on cookie sheet and then move to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Related Posts:
Day 1: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Day 2: Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
Day 3: Lemon Sugar Cookies
Day 4: Birthday Cookies
Day 5: Candy Cane Cookies
Day 6: Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies
Day 7: Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Day 8: Creamsicle Cookies
Day 9: Classic Spritz Cookies
Day 11: Gingerbread Cookies
Day 12: Peppermint Kiss Cookies

12 Days of Cookies! Day 9: Classic Spritz Cookies

One of the best things I’ve ever gotten on a black Friday shopping adventure was a Wilton Cookie Press. Not only because I can now say I own a gun that shoots cookies, but because it shoots the cookies I remember from my childhood, who doesn’t love to reminisce about childhood sweets! The original recipe which comes with the cookie press and is on their website, makes 7-8 dozen! Talk about being able to feed a crowd. I also like that the dough can be divided and the colors can be changed! For instance I made the normal dough color cookies and then green and red ones! When I began baking not too long ago I got some Ateco food coloring gel, it does a great job of getting a rich color.

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Classic Spritz Cookies

Ingredients:
3 ½ cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 ½ cups butter softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp almond extract
Food Coloring (optional)

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. In a bowl, combine flour and baking powder. In a large separate bowl, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg, milk, vanilla, and almond extract mix well. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture, beat until combined. DO NOT CHILL. Divide dough and color if desired. Fill cookie press with dough and with desired disks, press cookies onto ungreased cookie sheet.
3. Bake 10-12 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Cool 2 minutes on cookie sheet, move to cooling rack to cool completely.
**make sure to adjust the cooking time based on your oven temperature. My oven is super hot, and 10 minutes completely burns them, so I used less time.

Sorry I missed a day guys!!!

Related Posts:
Day 1: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Day 2: Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
Day 3: Lemon Sugar Cookies
Day 4: Birthday Cookies
Day 5: Candy Cane Cookies
Day 6: Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies
Day 7: Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Day 8: Creamsicle Cookies
Day 10: Peppermint Chocolate Chip
Day 11: Gingerbread Cookies
Day 12: Peppermint Kiss Cookies

12 Days of Cookies! Day 8: Creamsicle Cookies

Oddly enough, the first time I made these cookies was on national Creamsicle day! I know, I know there is some kind of holiday celebrated everyday of the year, but it was a pure coincidence that I made those that day, or is it? I’ll never know, but what I do know is that these are darn tasty! I wasn’t really sure how well these would turn out, honestly I never really cared for creamsicles before. I originally made them for a friend who was coming back into town, and I have this thing about tasting whatever I give out to someone. I just have a fear that if I don’t taste it and there maybe something a little off. Needless to say I was surprised when I had to stop myself from eating these! The original place I saw the recipe was at Baked Perfection

Creamsicle cookies

Ingredients:
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
¾ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
½ cup sugar
½ cup packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp orange zest
2 cups white chocolate chips

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Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. In a small bowl combine; flour, baking soda and salt, set aside
3. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and creamy. Beat in egg and vanilla until smooth. Gradually add flour mixture until combined. Mix in orange zest and chips.
4. Drop rounded tbsp onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 6-8 minutes, and store in an air tight container.

Related:
Day 1: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Day 2: Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
Day 3: Lemon Sugar Cookies
Day 4: Birthday Cookies
Day 5: Candy Cane Cookies
Day 6: Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies
Day 7: Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Day 9: Classic Spritz Cookies
Day 10: Peppermint Chocolate Chip
Day 11: Gingerbread Cookies
Day 12: Peppermint Kiss Cookies

12 Days of Cookies! Day 7: Chocolate Sugar Cookies

I don’t know what I do wrong with those bag mixes but I will NEVER be making those again. Whenever I made sugar cookies from a mix they were always super flat and burnt, really just bad!! This recipe was so delicious!! I have this habit of just checking out the ingredients of the recipe and not the directions… So this recipe takes a little bit longer than I first anticipated but is well worth the extra time, and the extra time comes from having the dough be refrigerated not because it is a super tricky recipe. This recipe comes from Sprinkle Bakes She cookies are decorated so cute! I love the dog star. The original recipe uses a mixer, and since I don’t have one there are a couple of changes to the directions.

Chocolate Sugar Cookies

Ingredients:
½ lb (2 stick) butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup cocoa powder
Pinch of salt

Directions:
1. In a medium bowl mix the butter and sugar until just mixed, making sure not to overmix or they will spread (this may have been the issue with my previous sugar cookies!)
2. Add the egg and vanilla extract, until combined. In a separate medium bowl whist together the flour cocoa powder and salt. Add the flour mixture to the butter and egg mixture. Mix until the dough is formed and there are no streaks of butter in the dough.
3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the dough on the parchment paper, place a second sheet of parchment paper on top of the dough and using a rolling pin roll the dough into an oblong disc. Transfer all of this onto a large cookie sheet and refrigerate for 1 hour.
4. Take dough out of the fridge, and preheat oven to 350 degrees
5. Remove the top sheet and roll the dough to about ¼ to ½ inches thick, the dough should not be sticky. Using a cookie cutter cut out the desired shapes from the dough, and place onto a prepared baking sheet. Don’t stretch out the cut shaped!
6. My cookie shapes were kind of on the small side so I baked mine for 8-10 minutes, but make sure that cookies are thoroughly cooked before removing from the oven. Let cool for a few minutes and then transfer onto a cooling rack and allow to completely cool before decorating.

Icing

Ingredients:
1 stick of butter, softened
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Food coloring (optional)

Directions:
1. Make sure to thoroughly mix the butter and sugar to avoid clumps of butter in your frosting. Add food coloring at the end.

20121207-164241.jpg I know that normal Christmas colors are red and green, and yes there will be some cookies that will be red and green, but in the Big Blue Nation blue is always an appropriate color to use! I was so excited that the cookies didn’t flatten out or get burnt!

Related:
Day 1: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Day 2: Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
Day 3: Lemon Sugar Cookies
Day 4: Birthday Cookies
Day 5: Candy Cane Cookies
Day 6: Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies
Day 8: Creamsicle Cookies
Day 9: Classic Spritz Cookies
Day 10: Peppermint Chocolate Chip
Day 11: Gingerbread Cookies
Day 12: Peppermint Kiss Cookies

12 Days of Cookies! Day 6: Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies

I remember being in either 7th or 8th grade and going to my friend Mary’s house and making these cookies. Who knew that there were butterscotch morsels?! Before that day I didn’t, and to think, the recipe is super easy to follow and right on the back of the bag! It always makes me wonder, because so much time has to be put into adding recipes to these packages that I think it’s important to try some of them out. Even my canned tomatoes have a recipe on them! Honestly, take a moment and look at the boxes/bags/cans your food comes in, I’m sure you’ll find something yummy to try. Now these cookies were a bit of a challenge to me because when they came out of the oven I realized that they may in fact be the flattest cookies I’ve ever made. I made have to do a bit tweaking the next time I make these and add ½ to 1 ½ cups of four to the mix, I will test it out, because too much and I’m worried they will become really dry.

Oatmeal Scotchies

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Ingredients:
1 ¼ cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ ground cinnamon
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
¾ cup granulated sugar
¾ cup brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups quick or old fashioned oats
1 2/3 cups (11 oz package) butterscotch flavored morsels

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. Combine; flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a small bowl. Beat utter and both the sugars, eggs and vanilla in a large mixer bowl. Gradually beat in the flour mixture, and stir in the oats and morsels. Drop rounded tbsp of dough onto ungreased baking sheets
3. Bake 7-8 minutes for chewy cookies, or 9-10 minutes for crisp cookies. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Related:
Day 1: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Day 2: Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
Day 3: Lemon Sugar Cookies
Day 4: Birthday Cookies
Day 5: Candy Cane Cookies
Day 7: Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Day 8: Creamsicle Cookies
Day 9: Classic Spritz Cookies
Day 10: Peppermint Chocolate Chip
Day 11: Gingerbread Cookies
Day 12: Peppermint Kiss Cookies

12 Days of Cookies! Day 5: Candy Cane Cookies

Two years ago while I was volunteering in my city I baked cookies for the families that we visited, this was one of the cookies I had made. I got this recipe from a book my mom has had for longer than I’m sure she’d care to admit, but the classics are tried and true! Since then I always make these during the holiday season. If you don’t know that there is peppermint in them it comes as a surprise at the end of eating the cookie, especially since they just look like a sugar cookie. This is a little different so not everybody may love them, but I like them and they are fun to make and are very festive looking!

Candy Cane Cookies

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Ingredients:
Cookie:
1 cup sugar
1 cup butter softened
½ cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp peppermint extract
¼ tsp salt
1 large egg
3 ½ cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
Red food coloring

Sprinkles:
2 tbsp crushed peppermint candies
2 tbsp sugar

Directions:
1. Beat together; sugar, butter, milk, vanilla, peppermint and egg in a large bowl. Stir in the flour, baking powder and salt. Divide dough in half, in one half stir in the red food coloring and refrigerate both halves for about 4 hours.
2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. For each candy cane shape use on rounded tsp of dough from each half of the dough and roll into 4 inch ropes. Place one red and one while rope side by side, press together slightly and twist. Place on ungreased cookie sheet; curve the top of the cookie down to form the handle of the cane. I did some like that, but others I didn’t curve the top and just make candy cane sticks.
3. Bake 7-9 minutes. While baking mix the crushed candies and sugar together, I put the sugar and broke a candy cane or two into pieces and mixed them in a small blender. Remove the cookies from the oven and immediately transfer to a cooling rack; sprinkle sugar mixture on top of the cookies. For easy clean up I placed a paper towel under the rack so any extra sugar/candy cane could easily be cleaned up.

12 days of cookies!
Day 1: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Day 2: Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
Day 3: Lemon Sugar Cookies
Day 4: Birthday Cookies
Day 6: Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies
Day 7: Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Day 8: Creamsicle Cookies
Day 9: Classic Spritz Cookies
Day 10: Peppermint Chocolate Chip
Day 11: Gingerbread Cookies
Day 12: Peppermint Kiss Cookies

12 Days of Cookies! Day 4: Birthday Cookies

Sunday was a day of celebrations!! I had the pleasure of going to two birthday parties, which meant I got to bake two different kinds of cookies!!! One was the Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cookies that you can read about here, and the other is what I am going to call the birthday cookie. Since I had first seen the recipe on Sally’s Baking Addiction I have been excited to bake these, I had just wanted to wait for the right occasion. A surprise birthday party is for sure the right occasion! As soon as these came out of the oven I just had to try one, I was a little afraid that I hadn’t put in enough cake mix, not to worry though it was amazing!! Wow these were really really yummy, and they turned out fluffier than I had expected.

Birthday Cookies

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Ingredients:
1 ¼ cups all purpose flour
1 ¼ cups yellow or white boxed cake mix
½ tsp baking soda
¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
2 tsp vanilla
½ cup sugar
½ cup light brown sugar
1 ¼ cups chocolate chips (mix white and semi sweet)
½ cup sprinkles

Directions:
1. In a large bowl cream together the butter and sugars, then mix in the egg, egg yolk and vanilla until creamy. In a separate bowl mix together the flour, cake mix, and baking soda.
2. Slowly add the dry mix into the wet ingredients, and mix until just combined. Making sure not to overmix!!! Fold in the chocolate chips and sprinkles.
3. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour, this will help keep the dough from spreading too much.
4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, the original recipe recommends baking for 11-14 minutes, I made mine on the small side so I baked mine for about 6-10 minutes.

**These were a hit at the party and the meeting that I took them to

12 days of cookies!!
Day 1: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Day 2: Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
Day 3: Lemon Sugar Cookies
Day 5: Candy Cane Cookies
Day 6: Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies
Day 7: Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Day 8: Creamsicle Cookies
Day 9: Classic Spritz Cookies
Day 10: Peppermint Chocolate Chip
Day 11: Gingerbread Cookies
Day 12: Peppermint Kiss Cookies