Monday, December 11, 2006

more cookies: chocolate snowflakes and thumbprint


my wife is a damned good baker as well. her favorite cookies are chocolate snowflakes, thumbprint cookies, and russian teacakes/mexican wedding cookies. the last cookie may be coming out of the kitchen a little closer to Christmas.

so here's the age old pair of recipes Di gleaned from some checkout counter impulse buy Betty Crocker cookie magazine 30+ years ago. these cookies have withheld the test of time and are now beyond a holiday treat. they are now TRADITION! (can't you just hear Zero Mostel singing that?)

  • 1/4 cup butter flavored shortening and 1/4 cup buttter
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg separated
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped nuts (we use walnuts but toasted pecans or toasted hazelnuts would definitely be in order)
  • jelly, jam, or chocolate kisses

preheat oven to 350 degF. mix shortening, sugar, egg yolk, and vanilla thoroughly. Sift flour and salt together and stir into the wet ingredients. roll dough into balls (about 1 tbs per ball). wisk egg white lightly. dip dough balls into egg white, then roll around in the chopped nuts to completely coat. place about 1" apart on an ungreased cookie sheet (or on parchment paper on the cookie sheet....helps on cleanup!). press thumb gently in center of each. bake around 9 to 10 minutes or until set. remove from cookie sheet and place on cooling rack. spoon on your favorite jam/jelly or plop a kiss into the depression, while the cookie is still hot from the oven.
let cool.....pig out.

chocolate snowflakes, or chocolate crinkles:
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 squares unsweetened chocolate (4 oz), melted (Di uses the microwave, works good, and works fast. play around until you know how long to nuke the chocolate)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup powdered (or confectioners) sugar

mix oil, chocolate, and granulated sugar. blend in one egg at a time until well mixed. add vanilla. sift flour, salt and baking powder together, then mix into the liquid ingredients. wrap in plastic wrap and refridgerate for several hours, or overnight.
preheat oven to 350 degF. Drop teaspoonfulls of dough into powdered sugar and roll to coat. shape into balls and place about 2 inches apart on a greased (or on parchment paper) cookie sheet. bake 10 to 12 minutes or until almost no imprint remains when touched lightly in the center. remove from sheets and place on racks to cool. try not eating all of the cookies before making up the cookie baskets for friends. or failing that, make another batch while you are still full, so that some may survive to make it out of the house.

there you have it. our cookie recipes are all blogged now. whew.

as always, if you try this recipe, or it inspires you to try something different, please let me know how it turned out. i'm always looking for fresh and clever ideas to improve my own cooking skills and recipes.

for a complete list of my online recipes, follow the link here


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