Monthly Archives: October 2011

Glace Icing Pumpkins

When I first started decorating cookies last year, I used the glacé icing recipe and tutorials from Our Best Bites. After a few months, I was finally ready to try royal icing. From the time I first used royal icing this spring, I haven’t went back to glacé until last week. While I still prefer royal icing for decorating, I have to admit that the glacé icing is pretty tasty!!

I used a couple of methods for decorating these cookies last Saturday. For some of the cookies I outlined the pumpkin and the vertical lines. Then I flooded every other section and allowed the icing to dry (although I should have let it dry a bit longer) before flooding the other sections. Here is a great tutorial with some amazing cookies by Sugarbelle.

The other method I used was to use thicker icing and without prior outlining, I piped and filled in the sections of the pumpkin similarly to the way I made these carrots using this tutorial also by Sugarbelle.

After the pumpkins dried, I piped the brown stems and the green vines. The icing wasn’t as thick as I would have liked to do the details. I also was hurrying to do the cookies and I didn’t let them dry as much as I should have between steps. And some of the icing ran off of the cookies, and I should have been better at cleaning them up, but since we were just going to eat them I didn’t bother.

If you have never tried cookie decorating, I strongly recommend trying glacé icing. It is easy to make and only uses ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry. However, I have to admit that I definitely prefer the way royal icing handles. So, you will also have to try royal icing sometime!!

The cookie and icing recipes I used are both found on Our Best Bites.

Linked to:
Reason’s to Skip the Housework’s Tuesday Time Out

Soft and Chewy Gingersnaps

I love gingersnaps. They are definitely one of my all-time favorite cookies. When I was thinking about what cookies to make for today’s 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies post I knew I had to make these delicious cookies. This is my Mom’s favorite gingersnap recipe that she has been making for years, and I LOVE them! Their texture is perfect: the edges are crispy, but they are soft and chewy on the inside.

Notice that some of the cookies above look a little different. I tried three different techniques when I was rolling the dough. The smoother ones were rolled into balls and then rolled into sugar. The one in the top right corner was made the same way, but I flattened them using a glass before baking. For the crinkly ones in the middle, I used a cookie scoop, but I didn’t roll them into smooth balls before rolling them in sugar, I just left them rough. You can decide the style you like the best.

Soft and Chewy Gingersnaps
Sugar & Spice & All Things Iced

2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup butter (may use shortening or margarine)
2 eggs
1/2 cup molasses
4-5 cups flour*
4 teaspoons baking soda
1-2 teaspoons ginger*
1-2 teaspoons cloves*
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
granulated sugar (to roll the cookies in prior to baking)

Cream together brown sugar and butter. Then add eggs and molasses; beat well. Combine dry ingredients and mix together. Chill dough. Then form into 1″ balls and roll in sugar. Bake at 350°F for 12-15 min. Do not over bake, the cookies will harden as they cool. Makes 5-8 dozen. (I used a 1 1/2 inch cookie scoop and made about 5 dozen cookies)

* I used 4 cups flour, 2 teaspoons ginger, and 1 teaspoon cloves.

This recipe makes a lot of cookies!! Perfect for sharing around the holidays. You can bake them ahead of time and freeze them. Or you could freeze the dough in balls prior to baking. Then you can take some out and bake them when you have a craving and your house will smell heavenly!

I can’t believe we are already on Week 5 of the 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies and Sweets! Every week there are so many wonderful treats posted! Be sure to check out all the fabulous treats below, I know I will! :)

Linked to:
Reason’s to Skip the Housework’s Tuesday Time Out
Lady Behind the Curtain’s Cast Party Wednesdays

Caramel Apple Pie Popcorn

Today I am participating in a fun NEW challenge! Sheryl from Lady Behind the Curtain is hosting The Improv Cooking Challenge and this is the very first month!! At first I was a little nervous that we would be given crazy ingredients that we would have to somehow find a way to use together (think Iron Chef or Chopped), but no we are assigned two delicious items that pair wonderfully with each other leading to endless possibilities of creations. Click on the image below for more details (and to join in on the fun).

The Improve Cooking Challenge

This month we were assigned Caramel and Apples! Growing up we had a small apple orchard. Every year we would make homemade cider, applesauce, dehydrated apples, and frozen pie filling. We would also eat lots and lots of fresh apples. Personally, I preferred the really really sour apples with a sprinkling of salt or a nice crisp tart apple with a little (or lot) of caramel sauce. For this challenge I decided to try Caramel Apple Pie Popcorn.

The tart dehydrated apples are perfectly paired with the sweet and chewy caramel popcorn. Add in a few toasted almonds and a sprinkling of cinnamon. And we are left with a fabulous fall dessert. And if you don’t feel like eating the entire batch yourself, I suggest bagging it up and delivering it to friends and family (not only is it great for fall, but it would also be a great holiday treat).

The original caramel corn recipe is a family favorite. My Mom especially loved using this recipe because it only calls for ingredients that we always had at home.

Caramel Apple Pie Popcorn
Sugar & Spice & All Things Iced

3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup Karo syrup
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon cream of tarter
1/2 cup butter or margarine (I recommend using salted butter)
1 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 cup unpopped popcorn, popped (you might want to reserve a couple of cups of the popcorn in case it is not needed – plus plain popcorn is a great healthy snack)
1 – 1 1/2 cups dried apple slices cut into small pieces*
1/2 – 1 cup toasted nuts (I used almond slivers)**
pretzels (I didn’t use pretzels, but they would be a great addition)

ground cinnamon (to taste)
fine ground sea salt (or table salt, to taste)

Cook brown sugar, white sugar, Karo syrup, water, cream of tarter and margarine to softball stage. While caramel is cooking, pop popcorn and toast nuts (if necessary). Combine popcorn, apple slices, nuts, and any other ingredients in a very large bowl and set aside until caramel is ready.

Add baking soda and stir vigorously (be careful as the mixture will bubble up). Quickly (and carefully–it will be HOT) pour the caramel over popcorn mixture while stirring. You might need to start with only half of the popcorn and add more once it is coated. I had to use two large bowls since I didn’t have a large enough bowl. Spread mixture onto a foil (or parchment) lined cookie sheet (jelly roll pan). Sprinkle with cinnamon and salt (if desired).

Eat and enjoy! If you like your caramel corn crunchy, you can bake it in a 250°F oven stirring every 10 minutes for about 30 minutes. To check if it is done, remove a piece and let it cool (it will be harder after it cools) and see if it is your desired texture.

*I used homemade dried apple slices using tart cooking apples in a food dehydrator. You could also dry the apples in your oven using these instructions from Serious Eats. You can also buy dried apples from the store. I’ve noticed them in the produce section.

**To toast nuts, spread them on a baking sheet and toast them at 200°F for 5-10 minutes. Stirring a couple of times.

Be sure to check out all of the other fabulous caramel and apple treats linked below!! I am also doing a double post today, so if you want, I would love for you to take a look at my Double Chocolate Mint Chip Brownie Cookies. ;)

Linked to:
Balancing Beauty & Bedlam’s Tasty Tuesday
Reason’s to Skip the Housework’s Tuesday Time Out

Double Chocolate Mint Chip Brownie Cookies

It’s time for another Christmas cookie!! I am having so much fun participating in the 12 weeks of Christmas cookies. There were so many fun and delicious cookies posted last week. I enjoyed looking at every one of them!

Today’s cookie is for chocolate lovers only! I have to admit that I’m not a huge chocolate fan. I usually choose a fruit dessert or cheesecake over something with chocolate. My husband on the other hand, LOVES chocolate. He would be more than happy if the only desserts I made were rich chocolate cakes with chocolate icing (and Nutella Cookies). That being said, I have still been sneaking these cookies all week. They are very rich and chocolaty and the mint chips complement the brownie texture perfectly adding bursts of festive flavor.

Double Chocolate Mint Chip Brownie Cookies
Adapted from The Pink Apron

1 1/2 cup dutch processed cocoa (I used Saco Premium Baking Cocoa)*
1/2 cup butter
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup mint chips

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a small bowl combine flour, baking powder, salt and set aside.

Melt butter in microwave. Add cocoa powder, oil, sugars, vanilla and mix until combined. Add eggs one at a time stirring until incorporated. Add flour mixture and stir just until combined, do not over mix. Stir in chips (You might want to reserve a few chips to arrange on the tops of the cookies prior to baking).

Using a small cookie scoop, drop dough onto parchment-lined baking sheets (you might need to grease the cookie sheets if you do not have parchment paper). Bake 10-13 minutes. The tops will appear set, but the insides will still be soft. Let them cool for about 10 minutes on the cookie sheets before transferring them to a cooling rack.

*The dark chocolate flavor is very strong in these cookies. You might be interested in using less cocoa powder. Or you can check out the original recipe for a version using 8 oz of bittersweet baking chocolate.

Don’t forget to check out the rest of this week’s Christmas cookies linked up below. Also, I am doing a double post today so feel free to look at my Caramel Apple Pie Popcorn. :)

Polka Dot Cake

My little girl turned 3 a couple of weeks ago! A week before her birthday, I came across this awesome cake on Pinterest with polka dots inside the cake! I was in love! I knew I had to make a polka dot cake for my little one’s birthday. However, upon reading through the post I realized Snowy Bliss used a cake pop maker to  create the dots. Since I don’t have a fancy mini cake ball baker thing, I had to come up with a different way to recreate this cake. I finally decided to try it using cake balls (the kind with frosting mixed into a baked cake).

I have to admit that the first time we sliced into the cake I was rather excited to see the polka dots. I was afraid it wouldn’t quite turn out…but it did! As for taste, the cake balls did have a denser texture, but I liked it. The only problem was they all the balls sunk to the bottom of the batter.

The very best part about making this cake was having my now 3-year-old help me from start to finish. She helped mix the cake ball batter, choose the colors and cake flavor, make the cake balls (although she didn’t like how they stuck to her hands), add ingredients for the chocolate cake, mix the batter, put the cake balls into the batter, cut shapes out of the fondant, and she even tried putting the fondant dots on the cake. It was so much fun!!  I have to admit that I enjoy having my little sous-chef help me in the kitchen (90% of the time when I am baking or cooking anything, she is right there beside me). While sometimes it gets a bit messier and takes a lot of patience, I love the memories we make in the kitchen.

Just in case you want to know every little detail about this cake. Here you go:

First, I made cake balls (Sorry, no pictures ): I started out with a white cake mix and mixed it up according to the directions on the box. Then I divided the batter into three bowls and colored each section pink, green, and purple (colors chosen by my little girl). I baked each of the cakes in 8×8 baking dishes. Once they cooled, I crumbed them up and added some canned creamed cheese frosting. (This is the ONLY time I ever use canned frosting and you can make your own instead. I just happened to still have a new can of frosting left from March when I made cake balls for a bridal shower). I added just enough frosting to hold the cake together when I formed the balls. For more info on making cake balls and pops check out Bakerella-She is the expert! I made some of the cake balls big and others little. I then set all of the cake balls on wax paper and refrigerated them (I left them overnight, but it probably didn’t need to be that long and you could use the freezer).

Next step…the cake: I made Hershey’s Perfectly Chocolate Cake. You can find the recipe on Hershey’s website, I used the modified high altitude version from Barbara Bakes. Once the batter was mixed, I put a little batter into the cake pans and added the cake balls. I cut some of them in half and laid them on the bottom and I stuck other halves to the sides (This idea is from the original cake post). Then I topped it off with the rest of the batter (I made two 8 inch round cakes and reserved a little batter for 4 cupcakes–you’ll see them another day). Then I baked the cakes according to the directions.

Decorating: I am not an expert at fondant. This is only my second attempt using fondant and the first time was two years ago for my daughter’s first birthday. Both times I’ve used homemade fondant (I’ve never bought fondant from the store). The first time (two years ago), I used this recipe from Baking Obsession and it was definitely a hit, but I didn’t have any gelatin on hand this time. This time I made marshmallow fondant using Wilton’s recipe and instead of mini marshmallows, I used regular sized marshmallows. It was quite easy to make. A little sticky and a bit messy…but overall not bad. I made the fondant the night before I needed it. I honestly liked the taste of both of recipes (They tasted a lot better than the fondant on my wedding cake!!). 

I used vanilla butter cream to fill the layers and crumb coat the cake. I then applied the fondant. I realized that I rolled the fondant a little bit too thin, but it was a little too late to fix it after it touched the pink icing. Let’s just say, the cake may have not looked as good on the other side ;) and over time (a couple of days) the pink started showing through the white fondant. Texture-wise, it was nice having the extra thin fondant because it wasn’t hard to eat. It just added a perfect finish (I didn’t see any fondant scraped off and thrown away). 

My daughter really enjoyed playing in the “frosting play dough.” I colored some of the fondant to match the colors inside the cake and we cut out circles. I also cut out the ribbons using a knife. I tried making a bow, but I realized that it probably would have been best if I made it ahead of time and let it dry carefully. Did I mention this was only my second time ever working with fondant?

This was a really fun cake to make!! If you decide to give it a try, be sure to let me know! I’d love to see your pictures!! :)

Linked up at:
Tuesday Time Out @ Reasons To Skip the Housework
Cast Party Wednesday @ Lady Behind the Curtain

Apple Pie Cookies

I love the holidays! We like to get into the Christmas spirit early at my house. So when I came across the 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies & Sweets hosted by Meal Planning Magic last week and I realized I could still join in on the fun, I was excited (to say the least)!! I missed the first two weeks, but each Thursday for the next 10 weeks I will be posting my favorite Christmas cookies and other treats. I can hardly wait to try some new recipes and pass them along to you.

I am starting with one of my favorite cookie recipes from my Mom. These delicious apple pie cookies melt in your mouth. The soft and flaky cookie is a delightful complement to the tart and spicy apples. And the lemon glaze adds the perfect finishing touch.

I love aroma of the apples simmering with the spices and sugar. Definitely one of my favorite fall and winter scents.

Be sure to use lots of flour to roll out the dough as it is rather sticky. After filling the circles, simply fold them over and seal them using a fork. Here are the cookies ready to bake.

While the cookies taste rather delicious right out of the oven. The icing really finishes off the cookie.

Apple Pie Cookies
Sugar & Spice & All Things Iced
Makes 3-4 dozen

Dough:
1/3 cup sour cream
1 egg yolk, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup butter (or margarine)

Stir together to blend sour cream, egg yolk and vanilla extract. In a separate large bowl stir together flour and sugar. Cut in butter until it resembles coarse crumbs. Mix in sour cream mixture until well blended.

Divide dough in half and chill until easy to handle (3 hours or so).

Filling:
1 tablespoon butter (or margarine)
1/4 cup raisins
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon apple pie spice*
2 medium cooking apples, peeled and chopped**

In a small saucepan, melt the butter. Add apples, raisins, brown sugar and spices. Cook, stirring occasionally, until apples are fork tender. Remove excess liquid and cool.

*Instead of apple pie spice you could substitute 1/2 t cinnamon, 1/4 t ground nutmeg, 1/8 t all spice, and a dash of ground ginger or cloves.

**You could use chunky applesauce in place of the apples. Or fruit preserves for the filling.

Assembly:
Roll each piece of dough to about 1/8 inch thickness and cut with a 2 1/2 inch round cookie cutter. Fill rounds with a skimpy teaspoon of filling. Fold in half and seal edges with a fork. Place cookies on an ungreased cookie sheet (or parchment paper).

Bake at 350°F for 10-15 minutes or until light brown. Remove and cool.

Lemon Sugar Icing:
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1-3 teaspoons water

Mix ingredients until drizzling consistency. If too thick, add a little more water, if too thin, add more powdered sugar. Drizzle over cooled cookies (I put it in a plastic bag and cut a small hole in the corner to make it easier to drizzle).

While I have only tried the apple filling, these cookies would be amazing with any kind of pie filling – pumpkin, peach, berry – You get the idea. They would be a fun addition to your holiday dinners and make lovely gifts for friends and family.

What is your favorite holiday cookie or treat?

Be sure to check out more of the 12 weeks of Christmas Cookies and Sweets links below:

This post is also linked at:
Must try Mondays @ My Favorite Finds
Cast Party Wednesdays @ Lady Behind the Curtain
Tuesday Time Out @ Reasons To Skip the Housework

Featured on Cast Party Wednesday

 

Pumpkin Themed Slice and Bake Cookies

I’ve had a couple of ideas on how to make Pillsbury-style Holiday cookies. I shared one idea with you last week with my  pumpkin cutout cookies. My other idea was to make slice and bake icebox cookies.

I started with some sugar cookie dough. I used Our Best Bite’s recipe, you could use any sugar cookie recipe (some might spread more than others).

I colored part of the dough orange using AmeriColor food gels. I might have chilled the dough at this point for a few minutes (I was working on 4 cookie projects at the same time, and I just can’t remember).

I then divided the orange dough into three pieces and rolled them into “snakes.” Next I carefully pressed the three pieces together to form a pumpkin shape. I let the dough chill for a while in the refrigerator (The longer you let it chill the better it will probably hold it’s shape. You could also put it in the freezer). Once the dough was solid, I pressed the remaining plain dough around the orange tubes and formed it into a log.

Next I wrapped the dough log in wax paper and chilled the dough again (This time using the freezer). I set the log on a kitchen towel in the freezer to help prevent the dough from getting too many indentations.

Once the dough was solid, I used a sharp knife to cut cookies that were about a 1/4″ thick. As you can see some of them held the pumpkin shape a little better than others.I baked them at 350°F until they appeared done. They will take a little longer to bake than regular sugar cookies since they will likely be colder.

The cookies didn’t quite turn out the way I had hoped when they first came out of the oven…some of them really didn’t look like pumpkins. So, I decided to outline them with Food Writers, and I was amazed how nicely they all came together.

I had to make a couple of jack-o-lanterns.  Not the most creative carved pumpkin faces, but you get the idea.

I was beginning to like my first method better, but after drawing on the cookies…I decided this is definitely the way to go. Some of the pumpkins turned out a little wonky…okay most of them turned out a little weird here and there. But I kind of like the individuality of them all.

I’m already thinking of more designs for the upcoming holidays. Looking at this cookie pumpkin patch makes me want to take my little ones to a local pumpkin farm. What are your favorite Fall traditions?

This post is linked:
Must try Mondays @ My Favorite Finds
Cast Party Wednesdays @ Lady Behind the Curtain
Tuesday Time Out @ Reasons To Skip the Housework

Individual Peach Pie Jars

Pie is definitely one of my favorite desserts. I love the flaky crust and the fruit or cream fillings. So delicious!! Unfortunately, my husband doesn’t quite share my passion….which makes these individual pies absolutely perfect!

I have been intimidated a bit by pie crust, but after following Barbara Bakes’ tutorial…I have no idea why. It was so easy and delicious. I made a batch of her Perfect Pie Crust and I used half of it to make a Tomato and Zucchini Quiche which was quite possibly the best dinner I have made all month. Just thinking about it makes me want to bake one for dinner tonight. It was amazing!!

I was excited to use the extra crust dough to try the individual pie jars from Our Best Bites. I have been wanting to make them for over a year. It was so easy…but you could make it even easier by using a store bought crust.

I just rolled out the dough and pressed it into my small jars (I used 4 oz jelly jars. Our Best Bites used wide mouth half pints–I haven’t seen these at the store. Although, if you can find them, I bet they would work even better than 4 oz jars). I had a little crust leftover that I baked with some cinnamon and sugar on top.

For the filling, I diced up a couple of peaches and mixed them with some sugar, to taste (I probably could have used a little more sugar…they were a little tart for my husband). Added in 1-2 tablespoons cornstarch (you can use flour). Our Best Bites also added butter, but I think I completely forgot it. Then I filled the jars with the filling (and ate the little bit that was left). To finish, I topped off the jars with some decorative crusts.

I placed the jars on a aluminum foil lined baking sheet and baked them at 375°F for 45 min or so. Partway through the baking time, I covered them with aluminum foil to keep them from over browning. There was a little spill over and I was glad I was able to just throw away the foil instead of scrubbing a pan (or my oven). But overall, they baked up really nicely!

Easy as pie! Actually, I think they might be a little easier than baking a pie. I usually have problems with my pies setting up, with these little beauties that didn’t even matter. You can eat them straight out of the jar. I personally dumped it out on a plate and ate it with some homemade vanilla ice cream.

A perfect little pie! I loved that the crust to filling ratio was higher than in a regular pie slice, because pie crust is just amazing. Although, using the correct jar size might help make it a little more perfect, I’ll have to find some wide mouth, half pints.

Any kind of pie could be made in this little individual form….pumpkin, apple, cherry…I’m excited to experiment with a cream pie too.

I plan on making some more of these beauties and freezing them before baking. Then I can put one in the oven with dinner and I can have a nice, delicious, fresh baked pie for dessert while my husband enjoys his favorite ice cream or chocolate treat. That would definitely be the perfect way to end a chilly fall day. They would also make super cute gifts, Our Best Bites has some cute ideas on how to package them up.

Linked up:

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The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie

The topic of today’s post has been somewhat of a struggle for me over the past few years. I like to bake and I love to bake cookies. However, I have ALWAYS struggled with chocolate chip cookies. Even the most “fail-proof” recipes passed on to me never worked out. Let’s not even talk about my Mother-in-Law’s infamous chocolate chip cookies. I think about a year ago I told my husband I was never, EVER going to make another chocolate chip cookie EVER.

Well, I couldn’t honestly give up on chocolate chip cookies forever…even if I have failed more times than I dare to think about. So, I have been still on the search for the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe and I have had some almost successes over the last few months.

Which leads me to today’s post…Today I am participating in my first ever blogging challenge/event:

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I found The Crazy Cooking Challenge last month when I saw all of their “Ultimate Macaroni and Cheese” posts and I was excited to join in on the fun. The minute I saw the topic for this month–The Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe, I knew I had to participate. I was determined to find “THE ONE” chocolate chip cookie recipe. The perfect one for me!!

Personally, I love my chocolate chip cookies to be soft and chewy, but still a little crispy…not cake-y, not dry, and not hard! I like them with a nice glass of milk, but I do not dunk them (just in case you were wondering).

All month I have been thinking about chocolate chip cookies. I made a couple of batches of cookies that turned out good, but they didn’t quite do it for me.

Last Saturday morning we had on “regular” TV for the first time in months (normally we just watch Netflix) and my daughter (who turned 3 this week) was flipping through the channels trying to find cartoons when she stopped on America’s Test Kitchen. I glanced over and told her to wait and watch for a minute. They were in the process of mixing together browned butter and sugar. It only took a few seconds before I guessed they were making chocolate chip cookies. I was pleasantly surprised when I was correct. IT WAS A SIGN!! A sign I had to make these cookies. I knew instantly that I had to try this recipe! I needed to try browning the butter. I had to try stirring the butter and sugar together then allow it to rest for 2-3 minutes before repeating two more times.

I searched blog land for what appeared to be this recipe. I came across a couple of bloggers who have posted the recipe: The Way The Cookie Crumbles and Apron Archives. Apparently the original source is Cook’s Illustrated May/June 2009. Since the recipe is published and I didn’t alter the recipe significantly when I made my cookies, I’m not going to copy the recipe here. You can also watch the episode of America’s Test Kitchen that I saw on Saturday over at Serious Eats.

America’s Test Kitchen definitely got it right with this recipe! It is amazing!!! I think I will be browning my butter and doing the special mix and rest cycle with my chocolate chip cookies for now on.

I only made a couple of adaptations to the recipe found on The Way The Cookie Crumbles:

  1. I used half salted and half unsalted butter (I only had one stick of unsalted butter and I didn’t feel like going to the grocery store). But I recommend sticking with all unsalted, just like they recommend. My cookies turned out a little too salty, but that didn’t stop me from eating a couple and then a couple more and …. well, I’m not going to talk about it. ;)
  2. I made smaller cookies. I love my cookies on the small side. I made 36 with this recipe (not 16). They were the perfect size and the texture was fabulous…plus that is how I justified eating more than one. But if large cookies are your thing…that is awesome too!!
  3. I only used 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips and no nuts. I normally prefer milk chocolate chips, but the semi-sweet were perfect in these cookies.
  4. After removing the cookies from the oven, I hit the pan on the top of the counter to flatten the cookies. It is a trick my Mother-in-Law taught me to help release the air inside the cookies. It’s highly addictive…I now do it out of habit anytime I make chocolate chip cookies. Try it…it’s fun. Probably more fun than scientifically necessary. :)

And the best part about these cookies…they still are nice and chewy and slightly crispy and absolutely delicious a couple of days later…maybe even longer, but I haven’t been able to test that theory yet. ;)

If you are up for trying a new recipe chocolate chip cookie recipe, I strongly encourage you to give these a shot. They are amazing! This definitely is the ULTIMATE chocolate chip cookie recipe for me!! You can find the recipe from one of these lovely blogs: The Way The Cookie Crumbles and Apron Archives. Be sure to check them out! They both have beautiful step-by-step photos.

And if you don’t think these are for you…well, you are in luck. Because there are over a hundred other chocolate chip cookie recipes linked up below. You are bound to find your perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe in one of these posts. ;)

How would you describe YOUR perfect chocolate chip cookie? And because I am curious…Do you dip your cookies in milk?

If you want to join in the fun (I know you want to), be sure to check out the link below for details on how to enter next month’s challenge!! I’m already looking for my next ultimate recipe!!

AND…if you feel so inclined…I would love for you to vote for my post by clicking “like” on #55 below. If not, I totally understand…there are a lot of amazing posts!!

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The Crazy Cooking Challenge Bloggers – Chocolate Chip Cookies:

Candy Corn Sugar Cookies

When I first saw the Land of Lakes candy corn cookies on Pinterest, I knew I had to try making some myself. I didn’t look very close at them until I saw this post by Sugarbelle. Like Sugarbelle, it bothered me that using the original directions cause every other cookie to have the colors mixed up (with yellow on the tip instead of white). I immediately thought of this solution and I couldn’t wait to make some myself.

I mixed up a batch of my regular cookie dough, although I wish I would have tried the Land of Lakes recipe. (I was planning on making some cookies to ice, but then I just ended up making a bunch of different unfrosted cookies. I don’t even want to talk about what happened to the cookies I was going to ice–I’ll just say that I always have to set the kitchen timer when I am baking — even if it is just for a couple of minutes.)

I divided my cookie dough into three portions. I dyed some yellow, some orange, and left the rest plain. Then I rolled them all out to equal widths between wax paper and chilled the dough. I have some pieces of wood that I use as guides when rolling out my dough (I really need to do a basic sugar cookie post and share all my tips with you).

I used three circle cutters (feel free to use bowls and cups). I used the largest to cut out a yellow circle and then I cut a medium circle out of the yellow. Then using the medium circle I cut out the orange dough and cut a small circle from the center. Then using the plain dough I cut out a small circle. Then I stacked them all inside each other carefully (It was really similar to how I made the pumpkin cutout cookies). I might have even put the orange circle inside the yellow before cutting out the small inner circle.

After all of the circles are inserted into each other, I cut them like a pie using a knife into eight pieces. As I picked up each candy corn, I gently pressed the dough together and rounded out the corners a bit. Then I arranged them on a parchment lined cookie sheet about an inch or two apart and baked them. I recommend chilling them again before baking them and hopefully they will all bake evenly. The orange section spread a little more than the other two, probably because they were different temperatures. I was afraid they would break easily after baking, but they all stayed together nicely.

I used the extra dough for another project. But you could try making candy corns with the extra dough or cut it out using any of your favorite festive shapes.

Do you like candy corn? I like it occasionally, in very small quantities. But I am in love with all the candy corn inspired treats and decor this time of year. For more fabulous ideas check out my Halloween and Autumn pinboards.

Linked up at:

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