Our Annual Cookie Baking Marathon happened a week ago, and we were grateful to be together again (no winter storm this time) to share a cookie-baking frenzy.
This year’s collection:
Mocha Cookies – these decadent chocolate cookies are featured in the Gourmet Cookie Book: The Single Best Recipe from Each Year 1941 – 2009, for 1990. They are moist, slightly chewy, and chocolaty rich!
Gianduja Bells **SEE BELOW (I used a small flower cookie cutter instead of a bell) – a great hazelnut/Nutella recipe.
Cashew Brittle – I was looking for a recipe that tasted like See’s Candy peanut brittle. I used 2 cups of raw cashews instead of peanuts, but I would use more next time, maybe even 3 cups. I was really happy with this recipe:
Mandelhoernchen – Thank you, Gesine Bullock-Prado, for posting this recipe on your blog! I do believe this is the best cookie on the tray this year, and I’ll be making them every year ahead!
Cranberry, White Chocolate, Pistachio Biscotti – this was Martha Stewart’s Pecan Mandelbrot recipe. We eliminated the chopped pecans and threw in a 1/4 cup Craisins, 1/4 cup shelled pistachios and 1/2 cup Nestle’s white chocolate morsels. I especially like this recipe because the biscotti has a soft and tender crumb.
Mixed Fruit and Nut Bark – Chop up one of those 1 lb bars of dark chocolate from Trader Joe’s. Melt half the chocolate in top of a double-boiler. Remove from heat and mix in the other half of the chocolate until it melts, too. Let it cool a little. Mix in 1 bag of your favorite trail mix. I chose Trader Joe’s Macadamia Mix Gingerly with Cranberries & Almonds. Pour it onto a parchment-lined baking sheet, spread with an off-set spatula and let cool and harden. Break into uneven pieces.
Thanks to “Ethel” and little a for filling the kitchen with the wonderful smell of home-baked cookies (even the, ahem, slightly overcooked ones :), and for taking the time to gather and honor our cherished tradition. Love you!
** I’m not sure what happened to the link for this cookie, but I did write down the recipe, so here goes:
Line cookie sheet with parchment paper and preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Toast 1 cup (4 oz.) of whole hazelnuts for 8 to 10 minutes in the oven, or until fragrant. When the nuts are cool, finely chop and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the nuts with 1 cup sugar and 3 cups flour. Add 3 sticks cold, unsalted, butter, cut into 1/2″ cubes, and mix on low speed until the dough comes together.
On a lightly floured surface , roll dough to 1/4″ thick. Cut out shapes with cookie cutter and arrange 1″ apart onto parchment-lined cookie sheets. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until lightly colored. Cool pan completely on wire rack.
Spread, or pipe, Nutella on the bottom-side of half the cookies, and sandwich another cookie on top.