One of our favorite things each year is putting up and decorating our Christmas tree!!! 🎄 This year, we decided to put our tree up on Thanksgiving and decorate it over the holiday weekend. Each ornament tells a little story!! We have ones from when we were married, our honeymoon, places we have traveled to and other ornaments we have collected along the way.
The best part about having our tree decorated is that we can enjoy the beautiful lights every night. It may sound silly, but we love it!!!!
Now that holiday season is here, I hope that you take time to enjoy the little things, whether it’s being with your spouse, spending time with family and friends, making that special recipe that reminds you of Christmas.
I just love to bake, especially around the holidays!!! Over to the weekend, we were watching a Christmas movie and the main character said that their favorite cooking was a Christmas Snickerdoodle! Not knowing what it was, I did some research about this cookie and learned that it’s a cookie made with cinnamon and sugar. Well, that was all I needed to hear and I was off to the kitchen to bake!!!! 🙂 We decided that this cookie is one of our new favorites – right up there with my pizelles and biscotti recipe. So, if you haven’t tried them, it’s definitely worth taking some time this holiday to bake a batch!!
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup butter, salted, softened
2 large Eggs
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1. Heat oven to 400°F.
2. Combine all cookie ingredients in bowl. Beat at low speed, scraping bowl often, until well mixed.
3. Stir together 3 tablespoons sugar and cinnamon in another bowl.
4. Shape dough into 1 1/2-inch balls; roll in sugar mixture. Place, 2 inches apart, onto ungreased cookie sheets.
5. Bake 8-10 minutes or until edges are lightly browned
I simply enjoy baking, especially during the fall and winter months. There’s nothing better that a cup of coffee and a delicious cookie!! Since we are a couple of weeks away from Thanksgiving, I wanted to share another baking recipe with you. This recipe that’s a little twist on traditional oatmeal cookies and my secret ingredient is coconut!!
Yield: 48 servings Total: 15 min; Cook: 15 min
Ingredients 1 cup (2 sticks) butter 1 cup granulated sugar 1 cup packed light brown sugar 2 eggs 1 tsp. vanilla extract 1 tsp. baking powder 1 tsp. baking soda 2 cups all-purpose flour 2-1/2 cups shredded coconut 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans 2 cups old-fashioned oatmeal
Instructions 1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2 large cookie sheets. Cream butter and sugars in mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs, beat together. Add vanilla, baking powder and baking soda. Then add the flour. Mix until well combined. Stir in coconut and nuts. Mix in oatmeal.
2. Drop on greased cookie sheets by the tsp., spacing about 1/2 inch apart. Bake 12 to 15 minutes, just until the edges begin to brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
One of my favorite things to bake are Italian Pizelles. The are a light, crisp cookie with a hint of anise. Now some people use vanilla, almond or lemon extract in their pizzelles but I prefer using anise seeds and anise extract. Now in the fall and over the holidays, I love to make chocolate pizzelles as well as pumpkin pizzelles. I find that pizelles are great to take to parties or any social gathering because it seems to be one of those cookies that people tend not to make.
To make pizzelles, you do need a pizzelle iron to make them but they are inexpensive and can be found in at your local store for kitchen supplies. I have had my Pizzelle Iron for a very long time and it works great!
So, I am going to start by giving you a couple tips for prepping followed by my favorite basic pizzelle recipe:
Many pizzelle recipes can be made ahead of time and placed in the refrigerator. If you decide to do that, just take your batter out 30 minutes before baking.
Make sure you plug-in your pizzelle iron before starting so it is warm and use a small amount of vegetable oil or melted shortening with a pastry brush and lightly put it on your press so your pizzelles don’t stick to the iron. I only need to do this before baking them.
Make sure you follow the instructions on using your Pizzelle Iron.
Classic Italian Pizzelles Recipe
1 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons of baking powder
3 large eggs
3/4 cup of granulated sugar
1/2 cup of unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon of anise extract (or almond, vanilla or lemon extract depending on what you like)
Anise seeds (about a 1/4 cup – I eye this when I am making my batter)
Pre-heat your Pizzelle Iron
Mix your flour and baking powder in a small bowl and stir.
Mix your eggs and sugar using a mixer for about 1 minute until thickened.
On low-speed, add the melted butter and anise extract and mix until combined (about 20 seconds).
Add the flour mixture and mix until combine (about 15 seconds – be sure not to over mix).
Then using a spoon, drop approximately 1 1/2 teaspoons of the batter and drop in the center of one of your patterned cookie grills on your Pizzelle Iron. Close the lid and lock. With most irons, there is a little light that is red and then turns green when the cookie is done. Just check the instructions on your particular Pizzelle Iron for the specifics for your press.
Remove the pizzelle from the iron and place on a cookie rack to cook. Completely cook the pizzelles and then dust them with a little powdered sugar before serving.
If you love pizzelles, trust me, they are simple to bake and take very little time. The great thing about them is that they taste amazing and will make your family and friends very happy. At some point, I will post my recipe for making chocolate and pumpkin pizzelle so that you have the recipes for the fall and the holiday season.