Tis the season to start baking, fa la la la la, la la la la…Everybody sing along now…. And please remember carols are a great way to get you in the Christmas Spirit as well as put a smile on your face. No lectures about Thanksgiving not even being here yet, we are talking “serious baker mode” has descended! (Plus, I need more ways to freak my daughter out as she tries to reconcile my grinchy side with my Christmas spirit sideJ.)
There is something about that first frost that stirs up the baker in me. I can’t resist getting in the kitchen and stirring up something warm and sweet when the nights start cooling off. I was recently reading the food section in our local paper and one reader was asking for crackly-topped cookies. Suddenly I had a mind picture of my mother’s kitchen; she had a big grin on her face and flour up to the elbows. My mouth started watering and I’m sure I got a whiff of fresh baked cookies. So I had to hit the recipe books and see I could find.
The following recipes came from my mom’s recipe drawer. My sister dug them out for me the Christmas after my mom passed away in 1997. We made these cookies every Christmas along with other favorites such as Apricot-Hazelnut Biscotti, English toffee and fudge, for our family to enjoy and to give to friends as gifts.
3 beaten eggs
1 ½ cups sugar
4 squares unsweetened bakers chocolate, melted
½ cup cooking oil
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp vanilla
2 cups all purpose flour
Sifted powdered sugar
In a mixing bowl, combine beaten eggs, sugar, melted chocolate, cooking oil, baking powder, and vanilla.
Gradually add flour to mixture, stirring until thoroughly combined.
Cover and chill 1 to 2 hours until easy to handle and not too sticky.
Shape dough into 1 inch balls. Roll balls in powdered sugar to coat generously. Place 1 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake in a 375* oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are set and tops are crackled. Cool cookies on a wire rack. If desired sprinkle with additional powdered sugar. Makes about 4 dozen cookies.
½ cup butter
½ cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
½ tsp vanilla
1 ½ cups flour
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp cream of tartar
2 tbsp granulate sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugars with an electric mixer on high. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until smooth.
In another bowl, combine the flour, salt banking soda and cream of tarter.
Pour into the wet ingredients and mix well.
Let dough rest and chill in the refrigerator for 30 to 60 minutes.
Preheat oven to 300*
In a small bowl combine sugar and cinnamon for the topping.
Take about 2 Tbsp dough and roll into a ball. Roll the dough ball into the cinnamon sugar mix and press it onto an ungreased baking sheet.
Repeat for remaining cookies.
Bake for 12-14 minutes (no more). The cookies will seem undercooked but will continue to develop when removed from the oven. Let sit for a bit to cool and firm before removing to a cooling rack. Makes approx 2 dozen cookies
Chocolate Crinkles (This is from my moms original Better Homes and Gardens new cookbook, 1950 something version??)
½ cup shortening
1 2/3 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
2 squares (1oz ea) unsweetened chocolate, melted
2 cups sifted all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
½ cup milk
½ cup chopped walnuts
Sifted confectioners sugar
Thoroughly cream shortening, sugar, and vanilla. Beat in eggs, then chocolate.
Sift together dry ingredients; blend in alternately with milk. Add nuts.
Chill 3 hours. Form into 1 inch balls. Roll in confectioner’s sugar.
Place on greased cookie sheet 2 to 3 inches apart.
Bake in 350* oven about 15 minutes. Cool slightly; remove from pan. Makes about 4 dozen.
PS – I would add some mouth watering photos but the camera died so you will have to make your own cookies and wait for your senses to catch up with the fragrance coming from the oven…