The Holiday Cookie Classics

Dalajah Allen, Publisher

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The Holiday Cookie Classics

The holiday season is upon us and the closer it gets, the more holiday bake offs we watch.  Here are three classic, mouth-watering, holiday cookie recipes that you will see in those bake offs.

Chocolate chip Cookies

This classic can be used for more than just the holidays but during this time of the year some people put their own little Christmas spirit spin on it!

Recipe:

1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed

1 large egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 cups chocolate chips (semi-sweet or milk)

Instructions:

  1. Note: This dough requires chilling.
  2. Place melted butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or a large bowl if using a hand mixer). Add granulated and brown sugars and mix on low speed until the mixture is smooth. Mix in egg and vanilla extract and mix on medium speed until combined.
  3. Mix in baking soda and salt, then slowly mix in flour and mix just until the batter is smooth and comes together. Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl during mixing. Slowly mix in chocolate chips.
  4. Line a cookie sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Scoop 2 tablespoon balls of dough onto the cookie sheet. Spacing doesn’t matter because you will be chilling the dough. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a second cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  6. Remove the chilled cookie dough balls from the refrigerator and space them 2-inches apart on the cookie sheets. Bake (2 tablespoon sized cookies) for 11-15 minutes, or until the edges are a light golden and the tops are no longer glossy. Let cool on the cookie sheets at least 10 minutes before removing.

 

Gingerbread Cookies

Gingerbread cookies are very common around this time of year.  This type of cookie is usually used for the ever so popular gingerbread house!

Recipe:

1 cup light brown sugar

1 cup light molasses

1 cup vegetable shortening

1 tablespoon baking soda

1 egg, lightly beaten

¼ teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 tablespoon ground ginger

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground cloves

4 to 4 ½ cups all-purpose flour, more for rolling dough

Royal icing and cinnamon candies, for decorating, optional.

Instructions:

  1. In a small saucepan, combine brown sugar, molasses and shortening. Place over medium-low heat and stir just until mixture is melted and smooth. Remove from heat and mix in baking soda and 1/4 cup cold water. Set aside and allow to cool to room temperature.
  2. Add egg, salt, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon and cloves; stir to mix well. Add 4 cups flour and mix well, adding up to 1/2 cup more if dough seems sticky. Shape into a ball, cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, up to 24 hours.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 1/4-inch thickness, and cut into gingerbread boy shapes with a 5-inch-long cookie cutter. Arrange on baking sheets 1 1/2 inches apart, and bake until risen and no longer shiny, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow cookies to cool. If desired, decorate with royal icing and cinnamon candies. Store in an airtight container.

 

Sugar Cookies

Sugar cookies are a holiday must.  There are so many different ways to make these simple cookies, and you can decorate them any way you see fit!

Recipe:

3/4 cup unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened

1 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg

1 large egg yolk

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup cornstarch

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Place the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and beat on medium-high speed until very pale and fluffy (about 3 to 5 minutes).
  3. Add the egg, and beat on medium-high speed until incorporated.
  4. Stir in the egg yolk and vanilla extract until combined.
  5. Scrape the bottom and the sides of the bowl with a silicone spatula, then add the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt.
  6. Stir together until incorporated.
  7. Use a 1.5 (half tablespoon) tablespoon cookies scoop to drop balls of cookie dough on the prepared baking sheets, allowing two inches in between for spreading.
  8. Flatten the balls slightly with the palm of your hand.
  9. Bake the cookies (one sheet at a time) in the center rack of the oven for 8 to 12 minutes, or until the edges are set and just barely beginning to turn golden. (If over baked the cookies will not be soft.)
  10. Cool on the baking sheet and transfer to an airtight container for storage.

 

The Holiday Cookie Classics