Favorite Christmas Goodies

Sunday, December 14, 2008

I am in the process of losing about 10 lbs (I know, not the best time of the year to decide to do something like that!)...so instead of eating Christmas goodies, I will blog about them. Every Christmas for the past three years or so two friends and I get together to do our Christmas goodies baking. We will be doing this again on Saturday and I need to come up with a list of what I will make. I always do a couple of favorites and try something new. Here are some of our favorites!

White Chocolate Cranberry Cookies (Zach's Favorites)

2 cups butter (four sticks), softened
1 cup sugar
4 cups flour
1 pkg. white chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Beat butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer. Add flour and mix well. Stir in chocolate and cranberries. Drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto cookie sheet. Flatten each ball sightly. Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool 5 minutes on baking sheets. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

Candy Cane Cookies

1 cup shortening
1 cup powdered sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon red food coloring
1/2 cup crushed candy canes
/2 cup sugar

Heat oven to 375°F. Mix the crushed candy and granulated sugar together and set aside. Mix shortening, sugar, egg and flavorings together. Add flour and salt and mix. Divide the dough in half. Add food coloring to one half and mix well. Make one cookie at a time by rolling a 4" strip (use about 1 tsp. dough) from each color. Place strips side by side, press lightly together and twist like a rope. Place on ungreased baking sheet. cure top down to form the cane. Bake about 9 minutes. Remove from baking sheet. While still warm sprinkle with candy/sugar mixture.

Puppy Chow for People
(Sometimes this is more of a New Year's treat for us)

1 cup chocolate chips
1 stick butter
1 cup peanut butter
8 cups Crispix cereal
2 cups powdered sugar

Melt the first three ingredients in a saucepan, and pour over cereal. Put the powdered sugar in a large plastic bag and add the coated cereal. Toss until evenly coated with sugar. Dry on foil and store in airtight container.

Thumbprint Cookies
These are from the Kraft Foods website.

1 pkg. (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
2-1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 cup PLANTERS Chopped Pecans
1-1/4 cups raspberry preserves

HEAT oven to 350°F. Beat cream cheese, butter, sugar and vanilla with mixer until blended. Add flour, baking soda and pecans; mix well. Refrigerate 30 min.
SHAPE dough into 1-inch balls. Place, 2 inches apart, on baking sheets. Indent centers.
BAKE 10 min. Fill each cookie with about 1 tsp. preserves. Bake 8 to 10 min. or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets 2 min. Remove to wire racks; cool completely.

White Christmas
No measurements here...I just eyeball it.

Combination of half white chocolate and half white confectioner's coating
candy canes

Smash the candy canes in a bag or chop in a food processor. Melt the white chocolate and coating together. Stir in the candy. Then spread in out on a baking sheet lined with waxed paper. Let cool. Break into chunks and store tightly covered.

Oreo Truffles
Got this from the Five in a Row boards

45 Oreo cookies, divided, one package
1 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 8 oz. packages semisweet baking chocolate, melted

Crush nine cookies to fine crumbs in food processor; save for later. Crush the remaining cookies into fine crumbs and place in a medium bowl. Add the cream cheese and mix well. Roll mixture into 1" balls. Dip the balls in the melted chocolate and place them on waxed paper covered baking sheet. Sprinkle the tops with reserved crumbs. Refridgerate one hour until firm. Store in fridge.

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