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Archive for the ‘cookies’ Category

one year ago: corndogs y’all

oh, it’s been a while. this i know. it’s been a pretty hectic month. between the two of us, there have been trips, house huntings, happy news and dumb news. i’m also still a “cupcake explorer” testing out vanilla cupcakes on a lip-sealed-till-it’s-discovered mission. so while my coworkers have been enjoying the cakes of my labor, y’all have been kept in the dark (till the day the recipe is cracked). so with the month of august…came a whole lot of crazy…but at the end of the day, the baking keeps me sane….so it’s high time we get back on track here.

it’s birthday season here at work, so i have lots of excuses to bake away. this week’s request: anything lemon.

i found this cookie on pinterest months ago and have been dying to make it….so thanks to tracy’s 39th birthday and his love for anything lemon, i had the perfect excuse.

lemon crinkle cookies
(adapted from Lauren Brennan’s award winning recipe)

ingredients:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar

preheat your oven to 350º. line three cookie sheets with parchment paper OR lightly grease pans and set aside.

in your mixer, cream together butter and sugar on medium-high till fluffy. mix in vanilla, zest, lemon juice and egg. scrape down your bowl and add in salt, baking powder, baking soda and flour. mix till all ingredients are combined.

measure out powdered sugar onto a plate. roll your dough into small (tablespoon sized) balls and roll in powdered sugar, covering the whole surface.

place on your prepared cookie sheet about two inches apart. bake at 350º for about 9 minutes or until the tops of your cookies begin to show small cracks.

remove from oven and let your cookies cool on the pan for about 5 minutes and then transfer to cooling rack to cool to room temp. or just eat them all right away, your call. you can also dust with more powdered sugar if you like.

and the result…..holy. moly. these cookies were delish. so light and fresh, with the perfect amount of zest to sweet. if you’re a fan of citrus…i would highly recommend these cookies. come to think of it….they would probably be just as tasty with some orange or lime as a substitute to the lemon.

you should absolutely squeeze in a batch or two of these cookies as the summer comes to a close.

enjoy!

-L

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“these are stupid good”

since july is coming to an end, i’m considering this post to be a little christmas in july. but, the only thing that would even qualify this as a christmas recipe is the fact that there are dried cranberries in these cookies and as i was making them last night i thought that these would make a great addition to my thanksgiving/christmas holiday dessert playlist! so, thank you ryan, our newest team member at work, for the suggestion of this brilliant little cookie. who knew i’d be into such a zesty morsel. but, i guess you never really know until you try!

ingredients

1 cup butter

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup white sugar

2 eggs

1.5 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 T grated orange zest

1 teaspoon orange extract

1.5 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3 cups rolled oats

1 cup dried cranberries

11.5 oz. bag of white chocolate chips

preheat your oven to 350 degrees. baking time is 10-12 minutes or until golden.

let’s get this zesty party started! in your mixer’s bowl blend together softened butter and sugars until smooth and creamy. add your eggs one at a time mixing well in between. follow that up with the extracts and the zest mixing until well blended. add your flour and baking soda, again blending together well. follow that up with the oats and the chocolate chips. i really just threw in the entire bag of chips, because let’s be honest what’s the fun in not doing that.

place dough in dollops (hehe) on your cookie sheets, well spaced out and bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden @ 350 degrees. once baked, set them out for two minutes to cool before carefully placing them on wire cooling racks. and that’s it. quick, simple and quite possibly life changing. i’m just saying!

happy friday

-b

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when it’s the first night of little birds baking club…what else would you make?! chocolate chip cookies are a classic. everyone needs a solid chocolate chip cookie recipe up their sleeve. we asked the girls how many of them had made chocolate chip cookies and a number of hands went up in the air. when we asked how many had made cookies from scratch, and not out of a plastic tube…all the hands went down. needless to say, the girls were pretty pumped to make AND eat these little guys. they all herded around me and took turns adding ingredients. oh, and hands down – being the one who gets to crack the egg….is the most coveted responsibility.

with little bird recipes, i’ll point out some tips that will be helpful for a new baker…and obvious to an experienced baker. bare with me on some of these….or enjoy them, depending on where you stand.

adapted from Baking Basics, by Betty Crocker

ingredients:
(wet ingredients)
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) *unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 1/4 cups brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon vanilla
2 large eggs
(dry ingredients)
4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 12oz bag** semisweet chocolate chips

equipment:
stand mixer w/paddle attachment
OR large bowl w/wooden spoon
cookie sheets
cooling racks

* instead of using all butter, i used half butter half shortening. my butter vs shortening experience is: butter makes a better tasting cookie, but also makes a flat cookie while shortening helps the cookie keep a good shape…..so using both = best of both worlds (taste and shape).

** can you believe this recipe actually called for a 24oz bag of chocolate chips?!?! i mean, my dad’s famous cookies only call for 6oz…so i had a hard time even using a whole 12oz bag. i cut it off at about 10oz….i mean, come on? you want some cookie with your chocolate chips?!

preheat your oven to 375º

prep – since your butter and eggs need to be room temperature, start by prepping all your ingredients. remove butter and eggs from the fridge and let sit on your counter while you measure out the rest of your ingredients. the time it takes to measure out all your ingredients into separate bowls….should be just enough time for your butter to soften up enough to beat easily.

tips & tricks:
“packed” brown sugar
: means to pack it into the measuring cup – pressing it in firmly. if the brown sugar has been packed firmly, it will keep the measuring cup’s shape when removed – if it crumbles apart, you have not packed it well.

flour: when you measure your flour, don’t scoop you’re measuring cup into the flour and shake or tap on the counter to get in as much flour as you can. you want your baked goods to be light and fluffy, not dense, so the way you measure your flour makes a big difference. instead of using your cup to scoop up flour, spoon your flour into the measuring cup, and level it off with the back of a knife. also, take the time to sift your flour. this just helps to get air into your flour. if you don’t have a sifter, just use a fork to stir up your flour.

eggs: if you want to avoid egg shells in your dough, crack your eggs into a separate bowl and make sure any accidental shells are removed before mixing them in. also, crack your egg on the side of the bowl….not the side of the counter – the less raw egg spills you have to worry about cleaning up, the better.

mix – using your stand mixer with the paddle attachment OR by hand in a large bowl with a wooden spoon, beat your butter, both sugars, vanilla and eggs at a medium speed till light and fluffy.

we call these our “wet ingredients” (mix first)

at a low speed, slowly stir in your flour, baking soda and salt. add in your chocolate chips. (by all means, go crazy with the 24oz if you want to….but, i’m just sayin, my 10oz was plenty)

these are our “dry ingredients” (mix into your wet ingredients)

bake – using a ice cream scoop or two spoons, transfer your cookie dough to cookie sheets. bake at 375º for 12-15 minutes. mine only took 8 minutes…so be on the lookout. once the edges have turned golden brown, remove and place the pan on top of a cooling rack for about five minutes. then carefully (once the cookies aren’t ooey-gooey anymore) transfer just the cookies from the pan to the cooling rack. cool to room temperature, if you can wait that long.

tips & tricks:
baking time really varies from oven to oven. always check on your treat earlier than the recipe calls for. with cookies, what you’re really looking for, are the edges to begin to turn golden brown. the cookie will also start to form cracks on the top. once your edges are brown, remove your cookies and place the pan on top of a cooling rack for about five minutes, or until the cookies can be removed from the pan without falling apart in a gooey mess. as the cookies cool….the insides of them keep baking so what seems like underdone when you first remove them from the oven, becomes the perfect, soft, break-apart without hearing a crunch, cookie once it has cooled.

that’s it. once your cookies have cooled, bust out the milk and enjoy.

for the record dad, the recipe was named “the best” chocolate chip cookies. in no way do they trump your famous cookies, so don’t feel threatened. love you! :)

-L

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“what’s the frosting? cream cheese and magic?!”

spring has sprung and i think it sprang us directly into summer. with highs already hitting the high 90’s we were in need of something light, sweet and juicy. sugar cookies, cream cheese frosting and strawberries? count me in. i love pizza, so why wouldn’t i love a dessert counterpart? to make this as delicious as possible i knew i could count on my old friend Martha Stewart for a superb foundation. here is what you will need for this simple and delightful treat.

sugar cookie crust

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

cream cheese frosting

8oz. cream cheese

8oz. cool whip

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1/4 cup powdered sugar

fruit topping

strawberries

grapes

blueberries

and really whatever fruit you desire

– – – – –

equipment

electric mixer

mixing bowls

parchment paper

rolling pin

biscuit/cookie cutters

first things first, the crust. in a large bowl mix flour, baking powder and salt. in your electric mixer’s bowl, go ahead and whip your butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. i usually do this on medium speed for about a minute. but make sure the butter and sugar are well blended and aren’t in crumbles. once fluffy, add your egg and vanilla. slowly begin adding your flour mixture, next. once this is all combined it should resemble cookie dough. split in half and, on plastic wrap, smash the dough into a disc shape, wrap up and put in the freezer for about 20 minutes. do the same to your other half of dough. (preheat oven to 325 degrees) after 20 minutes take out and leave on the counter for 5-10 minutes. on a flat surface lay down parchment paper and dust with flour. dust your rolling pin and roll out your first disc of dough to desired thickness. i rolled mine out to about an 1/8 of an inch and got about 2 dozen 3.25″ in diameter, cookies. using a round biscuit cutter cut out your crusts. pickup scraps, roll into a ball and roll out again, cutout and repeat this until no more dough is left. place crusts onto cookie sheets and bake for 5 minutes @ 325, turn cookie sheets around and bake for 5 more minutes, turn again and bake for 2.5 or until golden around the edges. once finished baking, remove from oven and set out for about 5 minutes before transferring cookies onto cooling racks.

in the meantime, while your crusts are baking get your frosting started. in a large mixing bowl, add all cream cheese and cool whip and mix together. add lemon juice and powdered sugar and mix together well. cover and place in fridge until cookies are completely cooled. once cooled, using a spatula, spread frosting onto your crusts. chop up some fruit and decorate as you see fit! enjoy your self…this is the fun part. i suggest adding fruit close to when you will be serving. the fruit juices tend to discolor your frosting. if you need to make them ahead of time, place in fridge once decorated, just know that your frosting may get a little tie-died.

please enjoy and have a wonderful weekend!

b

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who doesn’t love an oatmeal cream pie? when ever i think of them, i can’t help but remember that scene from ‘Honey I Shrunk the Kids’ where the kids are lost in the backyard and spot a GIANT oatmeal cream pie. i always thought that would be the most amazing thing as a kid, a giant sized snack cake. all of that cream filling. sigh. delicious. so, this post is an ode to childhood, when you could eat what ever you wanted without any regret.

ingredients
cookie
1 1/4 cups butter, softened
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 cups uncooked quick-cooking oats

cream filling
2 teaspoons very hot water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (7 ounce) jar marshmallow cream
1/2 cup shortening
2/3 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

first things first. preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

in your mixing bowl, beat your butter and sugar together until smooth and creamy, then add your egg and the vanilla to the mix and blend together. add all dry ingredients, except for the oats and stir. once mixed together well, add the oats and mix some more. you’re almost there. :)

i used a tablespoon to mold my cookie to make them  consistent in size. however, they didn’t spread out or flatten the slightest bit while in the oven. i was a bit disappointed. i suggest you do the same, but flatten them with a  wooden spoon once you place them on the cookie sheet. unless you want them to look like hamburger buns, but i’ll let you make that call. so, spoon these out onto a cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes. once baked, let them cool completely on wire racks.

in a very small bowl, dissolve the salt in hot water stirring constantly and until cooled. in your electric mixer’s bowl, combine marshmallow cream, shortening, vanilla and powdered sugar. mix until creamy. once fluffy add salt water and mix.

now for the best part. spread your filling onto the underside of one cookie and smoosh it together with another cookie. and there you have it, your very own mini oatmeal cream pies!

enjoy and have a wonderful week!

b

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“hmmm….they taste a lot like oreos….even better”

i was asked if nabisco would be mad if i started selling these. another coworkers said…it should be fine…just change the name. and then the brilliance followed….”laureos” :)

these really are quite tasty. i always think of my sister anna when i really love a treat i have made and have a hard time wanting to compliment them without sounding proud. she’ll say, “it’s the RECIPE that is so wonderful, not me”….and this recipe is thanks to smitten kitchen and retro desserts. (which i quickly found and bought off of amazon after reading her post)

not only are these super tasty, they are very simple, and you can start and finish them under an hour….and they really knock the socks off of the store bought version. my friend elaine said she could no longer justify buying these after she discovered the recipe…and i agree.

ingredients:
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large egg

cream filling
1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup shortening
2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

preheat your oven to 375º

in your stand mixer, on low and with your paddle attachment, mix all your dry ingredients till well blended. (flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt)

continue mixing on low…cut your butter into cubes and add in one at a time. add in your egg and mix until all your ingredients come together and form a ball.

line about four cookie sheets with parchment paper.

break off small pieces of your dough and roll into balls. place on parchment paper lined cookie sheets about two inches apart. now…this is just me….but i used the back side of my 1/4 measuring cup to flatten the balls into discs…to about a quarter inch thick. the dough might be a bit on the sticky side so a tiny bit of flour on the back side of your measuring cup wouldn’t hurt.

bake for 8-10 minutes, turning halfway through for even baking.

be careful with the baking time…depending on how small or large your cookies are…they don’t need to be in there the whole ten minutes. it’s just hard to tell when you’re burning chocolate cookies…so just be aware.

oh, and once you bake your first batch…you might realize that your cookies are coming out too large…which really isn’t a bad thing…but you may see you need to adjust the size of the balls.

once you remove from the oven, transfer your cookie sheet to a cooling rack till cookies are completely cooled.

while your cookies are baking you can make your cream. mix your butter and shortening together till well blended. add in your sugar slowly…followed by your vanilla. increase the speed of your mixer to medium high-ish and continue mixing till you have a light and fluffy cream.

i used a pastry bag and my large round tip to pipe out cream. just add a dollop of cream to center of your cookie and using another cookie, press down and in a circular motion till cream creeps out to the edges….and repeat till you run out of cookies!

milk required….as well as self discipline.

enjoy!

-L

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“take that, Girl Scouts of America.”

O.  M.  G. if you do not own a cookie press, stop what you are doing and run out to the store right now. they are sooo much fun. each press comes with these interchangeable discs that allow you to make different shaped cookies called spritz cookies. with so many different recipes out there, i decided to do a very simple, plain jane butter cookie.

ingredients

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup white granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup crisco

1 egg

1 1/2  teaspoon vanilla

equiptment

cookie press

cookie sheets

dipping chocolate to garnish

preheat your oven to 375 degrees

in a large bowl, mix all dry ingredients together. cut your crisco into your mixture until it begins to create crumbles.

in a measuring cup, crack your egg and add water until you reach 1/4 cup. i didn’t have to add but probably a tablespoon. then add your vanilla to the egg/water and beat together. mix into your crumbles to form the dough.

now the fun part. put your dough into your cookie press, pick out the shape you want and apply the disc. in three clicks you will have the cutest little cookies! line up your cookie sheet with these and bake for about 10 minutes or until golden brown.

if you don’t already have a cookie press, check out Wilton‘s. i have Marha Stewart’s, but can’t seem to find it for sale anywhere. but, there are a lot of cookie presses out there, i don’t think you can really go wrong.

happy monday and happy baking!

b

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