Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Cookies and Brownies - Yum!

Today I am thinking about Christmas cookies. Yummy, sugary, bites of heaven. Some with fruit, some with nuts, some with icing and those little silver balls.

Right about this time of year, I pour over Martha Stewart's handbook on baking and drool over the scrumptious looking pictures. And dream about putting together festive tins loaded with a massive amount of tasty offerings. It just doesn't quite seem like the holidays without sharing cookies.

The best sugar cookie recipe, bar none, is Martha Stewart's. It takes a little effort, but it has just the right flour to sugar ratio. And if you take her suggestion in rolling out the dough, then the cookies with be hearty (not flimsy) and worth wrapping your lips around.

And worth the calories. 'Cuz there may just be a few. I'm just sayin'.

And this year, I think I'll try this a new, yummy sounding recipe for Mint Brownie Bites from Goodhousekeeping. Perhaps you aware of my love for any and all things brownie. It's not like I mention them at all.

A-hem.

Brownie Bites

* 2/3 cup(s) all-purpose-flour
* 1/2 cup(s) unsweetened cocoa
* 1/2 teaspoon(s) baking powder
* 1 pinch(s) salt
* 3/4 cup(s) granulated sugar
* 3 tablespoon(s) butter or margarine, melted and cooled
* 2 tablespoon(s) honey
* 1 teaspoon(s) vanilla extract
* 1 large egg white

Topping

* 1 cup(s) confectioners' sugar
* 1 tablespoon(s) milk
* 1 tablespoon(s) butter or margarine, softened
* 1/2 teaspoon(s) peppermint extract
* 2 ounce(s) white chocolate, melted and cooled
* 2 ounce(s) round hard peppermint candies, broken into chunks

Directions
1. Prepare Brownie Bites: Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease large cookie sheet.
2. In large bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. In medium bowl, whisk sugar, butter, honey, vanilla, and egg white until blended. Stir sugar mixture into flour mixture; then, with hand, press dough just until blended.
3. With greased hands, shape dough into 1-inch balls and place on prepared cookie sheet 2 inches apart; press to flatten slightly. Bake 7 to 8 minutes or until brownies have cracked slightly. Transfer to wire rack to cool.
4. Prepare Topping: In medium bowl, whisk confectioners' sugar and milk until smooth. Whisk in butter and extract, then whisk in melted chocolate until smooth. Swirl 1 teaspoon topping on each cookie. Top each frosted cookie with 1 candy piece. Store in tightly sealed container with waxed paper between layers at room temperature up to 3 days or in freezer up to 1 month.
***

Sigh . . . the holidays. Where it's perfectly acceptable to stuff yourself silly with large amounts of sugar and butter and chocolate.

Loving it!

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