I originally intended to have a seperate post for each of the Christmas cookies I made this year. However, New Years is quickly approaching and I still haven't posted any of the non-cookie baking from the Holidays. So I've made the executive decision to highlight the two remaining cookies and give an overview of the Pink Apron's 2010 cookie packages in one final post.
Egg Nog Cookies was made throughout the month of December and they are such a favorite that I made more dough to include in my cookie packages. These were also made for Mr. Apron's cookie swap at work and my sister's engagement party which was held a few days before Christmas.
Candy Canes ended up being the other sugar cookie shape of the holidays. I knew the trees were going to take a while, so I picked the candy canes thinking they would be less time consuming. I honestly didn't love the way they came out. Maybe because the Christmas Trees came out so well, these didn't seem as spectacular.
For the past three years I have made Cream Cheese Spritz Cookies. I have never found working with a cookie press to be what I would describe as enjoyable, but this year I fought the cookie press and lost! The entire time I made them I struggled to get the cookies to stick to the pan. I had to put my cookie sheets in the freezer to get the press to remotely work. Then toward the end of the red cookies my press broke.
I had already made the green dough and I was able to get another press but the cookies still did not want to stick to the pan. Finally Mr. Apron pointed out that I was spending more time on the spritz cookies than they were worth and to just leave out the green this year. The decision was made and it was the right decision. Only red cookies this year.
I'm not 100 percent sure why the cooke press gave me such a hard time this year. The cookie press can be fussy. The cookie sheet needs to be cold and you can't use parchment paper. Maybe it was too hot in my kitchen. Maybe my cookie sheets are too non-stick. Anyways, no one seemed to miss them. Next year, may be an off-year for the sprtiz cookie.
This is the recipe I normally use.
1 cup butter, softened1 cup granulated sugar
1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1 egg yolk
Preheat oven to 350°F. Cream butter and cream cheese together. Add sugar and mix well until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, vanilla and lemon peel. Mix well. Gradually add flour and salt to cream mixture. Shape dough in small logs and place in cookie press. Press cookies onto cool ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 12-15 minutes or until lightly browned.
To make colored cookies add a small amount of food coloring to dough before shaping into logs. I like to make half red and half green. Store in airtight container at cool room temperature for several weeks or freeze for two months. Recipe makes 4 dozen cookies.
Source: Fancys Flours
Meltaway rum snow balls was another new cookie this year. I liked having a spice cookie in the mix. Though some peope said they would have preferred Linzer Cookie again this year. I think the Linzer Cookie was the one cookie I heard about missing the most.
Peanut Butter Truffles and Oreo Truffles are my chocolate cookies for the holidays! What is great about these cookies is they last awhile! I can make them well before Christmas put them in the refridgerator or freezer, then pull them out as I'm giving out my cookie tin. I also found some great snowmen glass jars that were perfect for filling with truffles and giving as gifts. As I am writing this I really wish I took a photo.
And finally, my favorite cookie of the season, the Christmas Tree sugar cookies. The tins I used were actually so full of the "non-sugar cookie" cookies (is that gramatically correct?) that i packaged the trees and candy canes in favor bags and had them seperate from the tins when I gave them to friends and family.
Here is a look inside this year's cookie tins. That's it for the cookies! Tomorrow I'll start posting what I baked for Christmas Eve, Christmas, and my office Holiday Pary!