Sunday, December 28, 2008

Gingerbread Cookies

I bake gingerbread cookies every year and each year I try a new recipe. Usually the recipes are similar and the outcome is almost the same. However, this year, the cookies were the best I have ever had. They were soft, but not too soft and had just the right taste.

I usually only eat one cookie to taste it and give the rest away to friends, neighbours and co-workers. Usually I don't have a problem giving them away and not keeping any for myself, but it was rather difficult this year.

If I had not packaged them all, (see below) so that they were ready to be given away, I probably would have eaten most of them.

I am just happy that they were enjoyed as I received many compliments, including those who said that they were the best gingerbread cookies they had ever tasted.

Now, I am wondering why they turned out so well. Was it because of the freezing process that the dough had to go through or was it just the overall recipe and method? I suppose it doesn't matter. All I know is that I will probably not be trying anymore gingerbread recipes. I have found a keeper.

The recipe for these fabulous gingerbread cookies is of course from Martha Stewart and can be found here.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Cookie Bouquet

These are the adorable cookie bouquets that I helped my niece and nephew make for their teachers. They had so much fun making them, and enjoyed eating the extra cookies even more!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Key Lime, Strawberry and Plain Sprinkle Cookies

There are some cute cookies that my sister bought from the store for her kids to bring to school as a treat. I was surprised that she actually bought different flavors as I always thought children may all want the same kind and then there would not be enought of a certain flavor. The green one is Key lime flavored and was a little tart. The rainbow sprinkled cookie was a simple icing and sprinkle cookie and the one with red sprinkles had a sweet strawberry flavor to it.
The cookies were very soft and melt in your mouth so I am sure the kids loved them.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Duncan Hines Cookies

These chocolate fudge cookies were made out of Duncan Hines cake mix. There was a recipe on the side of the cake mix box for cookies so I decided to try it. I didn't quite follow the same recipe as I kept it very simple. I am sure you can use any box of cake mix and turn them into cake mix cookies.

I poured the package of Duncan Hines Chocolate Fudge cake mix into a mixing bowl, added 2 eggs and a 1/2 cup of oil. Then I mixed it all together and dropped the batter by tablespoonful onto a greased cookie sheet. Bake on 375 for 10-12 minutes.

I sprinkled coconut flakes onto half of them before baking just to add a different look to the plate of cookies. You can also add nuts, chocolate chips or anything else you usually add to cookies.

I placed a few lemon shortbread cookies onto the plate of cookies as well in order to add some contrast. These chocolate cake mix cookies tasted delicous and I would love to try making chocolate chip cookies using vanilla cake mix.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Easy Coconut Pecan Squares

I often use a shortbread cookie recipe as a lemon meringue pie crust, but this time I made these coconut pecan squares instead. They turned out quite well, and were much easier to make, because all I had to do was push the crumbled shortbread cookie mixture into the bottom of a 9x13 pan to form the crust.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Martha's Favorite Cookie Contest

I am so excited that out of all the entries in the Martha's Favorite Cookie Contest, she chose our Lotus Blossom Cookies as one of the 10 favorites!

Martha announced the 10 favorite cookies on her show today, and there were some very interesting cookies shown. The favorites will receive an autographed copy of Martha Stewart Cookies. Now I will have an extra copy of her great cookie book.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Martha Stewart's Cookies

Martha Stewart's Cookies recipe book is a great add on to any recipe book collection.

I recently purchased one from Costco and look forward to trying most of the recipes. The first one I tried was for Lime Meltaways. I usually do not like tart desserts, but they were delicious and went well with a lemon meringue pie that I also baked. The meltaways were easy to make and I would definitely make them again.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Lotus Blossom Cookie Molds

The above is a picture of the cookie molds my mother used to make the lotus blossom cookies. They are 3 different sizes with different shapes in the middle. She purchased them from a street vendor in Chinatown.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Lotus Blossom Cookie Recipe

1 cup rice flour
1/2 cup flour
1 cup tapioca starch
3/4 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup water
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 1/2 tsp. salt
5 tbsp. sugar
4 tbsp. black and white sesame seeds
7 1/2 cups vegetable oil for frying

How to make the cookies:
1. Sift rice flour and flour

2. Mix flours
with tapioca starch

3. Stir in coconut milk
4. Add egg yolk, 1 tbsp. vegetable oil, salt, sugar, and sesame seeds. Mix well.
5. Heat oil and immerse cookie mold into oil until it is very hot
6. Dip cookie mold halfway into batter to coat (Do not dip the whole mold into the batter, if you do this, the cookie will not release into the oil)
7. Now, place cookie mold into oil
8. Gently wiggle the cookie mold until the cookie is released
9. Repeat steps #6,#7 and #8 until batter is all gone
10. Remove cookies from oil as soon as they are golden in color
This recipe requires a special cookie mold with a long handle. The molds come in different shapes and sizes.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Lotus Blossom Cookies

My mother made these beautiful Lotus Blossom Cookies for my sister's wedding. Many people had never heard of them before, but they were very popular as the mildly sweet flavor is different from most traditional cookies. They are not baked, but fried to produce a chip-like crunch.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Fortune Cookies

Fortune cookies are typically received along with a Chinese meal, but they can also be decorated and given out as party favors.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Mother's Day Cookie Bouquet

Having a cookie exchange is a lot of fun because you only have to make one type of cookie, yet you get to try a wide variety of cookies. Why not create a Mother's Day Cookie Bouquet as well!

I usually participate in cookie exchanges around Christmas time, but this year I will be trying something a little different. I have decided that I would like to make a Mother's Day Cookie Bouquet containing different types of cookies, but would rather only make one type of cookie. Therefore, I will be hosting a cookie on a stick exchange!

For the exchange, I have asked each person to bring:
  1. Two dozen of their favorite cookies. (A dozen of which will need to be on individual sticks)
  2. A container in which to arrange their bouquet, filled almost to the top with rice. (a vase, cookie jar or flower pot)
  3. Ribbon of choice
  4. Clear cellophane
We will each receive two cookies from each person, one to put in our bouquet arrangement and the other to taste while the person who brought the cookie tells us a little bit about it.

We will then wrap each cookie-on-a-stick with cellophane and tie it with ribbon directly underneath the cookie.

Next, we will arrange the cookies into each of our containers

The Mother's Day Cookie Bouquets will then be complete!

I chose to ask each person to bring their favorite cookie rather than a specific type. If you would like to have a particular theme for the bouquets, that would be fun also. For instance, you can ask your guests to bring cookies with a garden theme (flowers, leaves, butterfly shaped etc.), drop cookies, cookie cutter cookies, biscotti, chocolate flavored and so on.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Party Favors

Cupcake Cookies

These adorable cookie creations were made
by the very talented Flickr user hello_naomi
Click on one of her pictures to see more
of her amazing collection. The cupcake
cookies would make a wonderful party favor
for any child's birthday party.

Cookie Pops

Cookies and other baked treats have become
very popular as party favors. Cookies can
easily be customized to match any theme,
and are well liked by most party guests.

Cookie Houses

These cookie houses would be a perfect
housewarming party favor.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Flourless Fruity Cookies

These are great for those who love a lighter fruitful cookie. Great for breakfast on the go, or add some ice cream and make it a dessert!

3 ripe bananas
1/4 cup applesauce
1 cup mixed dried fruit (any kind/mixture you like, chopped and pitted if necessary)
*some ideas: dried apricots, dates, raisins, dried cranberries, dried apples
2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/3 cup oil (grapeseed, vegetable or canola)
1 tsp. vanilla

  1. Mash bananas in a large bowl
  2. Stir in the remaining ingredients
  3. Mix well and allow to sit for 10 minutes
  4. Drop by spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet
  5. Bake in a pre-heated 350 F oven for 20-25 minutes or lightly brown

Saturday, March 22, 2008

A Healthy Cookie?

Maybe cookies are not the most slimming snack around, but here are 5 ingredient substitutions that I use to make them a little healthier.

1. Grapeseed oil in place of Vegetable oil
2. Diced or small dried fruit (apricots, dates, raisins) in place of candy
3. Dark chocolate 70% cocoa content or higher in place of milk/white chocolate
4. Organic cane sugar (I found it at my local bulk food store) instead of regular granulated sugar
5. Ground quick cooking oats in place of flour (Depending on my experience with the recipe, I will replace 1/4 to all of the flour that a recipe calls for)

I hope that helps to make your cookie cravings a little more enjoyable!

Friday, March 21, 2008

My favorite cookies to make are......

Shortbread cookies!
They are easy to make and great for decorating. Most people I know make sugar cookies, but I prefer shortbread. They are softer and tastier.

2 cups of flour
1 cup of icing sugar
1 cup of cornstarch
1.5 cups of softened butter
  • Mix all ingredients together with a pastry blender, form into a ball and refrigerate for 1 hour. It is not necessary to refrigerate the dough, but it makes it easier to handle if the cookies are going to be cut out with cookie cutters.

  • Roll out the dough to 1/4 inch thickness on a floured surface.

  • Cut out desired cookie shapes.

  • Use a lifter to lift each cookie onto an ungreased baking sheet.

  • Re-roll scraps and cut out more shapes.
Bake cookies at 325 F for 18-20 minutes depending on size of cookies (they are ready when the edges are golden)
Let cookies cool before removing them from cookie sheet.

Now it's time to decorate the cookies! There are many ways to decorate the cookies..............

You can put sprinkles on them, but this needs to be done before they are put in the oven to be baked.

They can be decorated with icing. Royal icing works well because it hardens and then the cookies can be stacked.

They can be partially or fully dipped in chocolate and then topped with coconut flakes, slivered almonds, sprinkles and anything else you prefer.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Easter Cookies

My friend is hosting Easter at her place this year so
we baked these shortbread cookies for one of the
desserts. We decorated them with royal icing.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Valentine's Day Cookies

These Valentine's Day cookies were freshly baked and hand decorated by a
guest who gave them to my sister for her birthday. Her
birthday is close to Valentine's Day so that's why most of
them are hearts. There were also shoe, purse and butterfly
shaped cookies.