SLICE OF LIFE BY EILEEN GOLTZ
Hanukkah and cookies are two words that always seem to go together (along with latkes and sofganyot, of course). We all have family favorites that, if not served, will cause a minor thermonuclear meltdown with these expecting them. While my chocolate chip cookies and mud bars never fail to make an appearance I try, every year, to come up with a few new and exciting cookies recipes that 1. Can be made ahead of time 2. Can be doubled or tripled and 3. Are so delicious that everyone will be begging for recipes (holiday tip: copy the recipe and have them with you……just in case anyone asks, and they will.)
I promise, if you make the following recipes (I tested them and all I can say is wow, awesome and OMG delicious) if you bring them as a “hostess gift” or your contribution to the” pot luck” you are all guaranteed to be the most popular person at any party you’re invited to.
VANILLA ROLLED SUGAR COOKIES (dairy or pareve)
The best frosting is a glaze made with powdered sugar and milk or non dairy substitute of your choice. Keep it thin and you can color it with food coloring.
1 1/2 cups butter or margarine softened
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
5 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
In the bowl of an electric mixer combine the butter and sugar and beat until smooth (at least 3 minutes). Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until combined. Slowly, on a low speed, add the flour, baking powder, and salt. When combined, cover, and refrigerate the dough for at least two hours or overnight.
When you’re ready to cut out your cookies, preheat oven to 400. Lightly flour the surface you’re going to be rolling the dough on and then roll out 1/3 the dough to about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut the dough into shapes with your cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on parchment paper covered cookie sheets. You can decorate with colored sugar or sprinkles at this point or wait until they are baked and cooled to frost. Repeat with the scraps and the remaining dough, 1/3 at a time. Bake 6 to 9 minutes (they should be just lightly golden on the edges) Makes 3 to 5 dozen depending on the size of the cookies.
Modified from one of my favorite Martha Stewart recipes
NUT SQUARES (dairy or pareve)
I had this cookie on a recent trip to Israel and refused to leave until I had the recipe
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup plus 6 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 cups butter or margarine, softened
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup light corn syrup
1 1/2 cups toasted pecans pieces
1 1/2 cups toasted walnuts pieces
1/2 cup toasted hazelnut pieces
1/4 cup whipping cream or non dairy substitute
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 10-by-15 inch baking pan. Line the pan with parchment paper. An overhang on the ends help to remove the cookie from the pan after it is baked and cooled so that cutting is easier).
In the bowl of an electric mixer cream together the sugar and butter for at least 3 minutes. Add the egg and beat until combined.
In another bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking powder. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix just until dough comes together (do not over mix). Press the dough into the prepared pan, making sure that the dough goes up the edges slightly. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until the crust is just slightly browned (do not overcook). Remove the crust and cool. Reduce the temperature to 300.
While the crust is cooling combine the butter, brown sugar, sugar, honey and corn syrup. Bring the mixture to a boil. Boil for between 2 to 3 minutes but no longer less and no longer than that. Remove the mixture from the heat and stir in the nuts, cream, salt and vanilla. Mix to combine and then gently spoon the nut mixture into the crust. Return the pan to the oven and cook for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the filling is bubbling. Don’t worry if it looks a little runny, it will set up as it cool. Cook enough to cover then let set up for at least 4 hours (or overnight) before you try to cut it. Cut into small squares or rectangles. Makes up to 48 cookies depending on the size.
Submitted by Ari Zaharh Tel Aviv Israel, modified from a recipe by Linda Faus and Nathan Hostler
CHOCOLATE FUDGE NUT COOKIES (dairy or pareve)
1 pound bittersweet chocolate, chopped
11 tablespoons sweet cream butter or margarine
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cups sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
11/2 tablespoons instant coffee or espresso crystals
11/2 tablespoons vanilla
11/4 cups coarsely chopped hazelnuts or pecans
2 cups milk or semi sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. In a microwave bowl combine the bittersweet chocolate and butter. Microwave just until the butter is melted and then mix to combine. Set the mixture aside.
In a bowl combine the flour, baking powder and salt and set it aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment combine the eggs, sugar, coffee or espresso powder, and vanilla and beat until combine. Slowly pour in the chocolate mixture and mix well. By hand, gently fold in the flour mixture, pecans and chocolate chips.
Drop by heaping tablespoonfuls, 2 inches apart, onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until cookies no longer look wet in the middle (do not overcook!!). Let sit on pans for about two minutes before removing to the cooling racks. Makes approx. 2 dozen
Modified from a recipe from Catherine Buford, Daily Cafe at Rejuvenation, Portland
HERSHEY’S WHITE CHOP LEMON COOKIES (dairy)
I didn’t change a thing in this recipe; it was perfect just as it is. My friend Laura makes these every year and they are truly awesome.
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine, softened
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon peel
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) HERSHEY’S Premier White Chips
1 cup chopped pecans (optional)
Heat oven to 350. Lightly grease cookie sheet or line with parchment paper. Beat butter, brown sugar, lemon peel and vanilla extract in large bowl until light and fluffy. Add eggs; beat well. Stir together flour, baking soda and salt; add to butter mixture. Stir in white chips and pecans, if desired. Drop by tablespoons onto prepared cookie sheet.
Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until almost set. Cool slightly; remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely. Makes about 30 cookies.
From Hershey’s web site
RASPBERRY CREAM COOKIES (dairy)
These taste like scones!!
2 cups fresh raspberries (or frozen
1 1/2 tablespoon sugar for the raspberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 cup flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
1 stick of butter cubed, (cold not soft)
2/3 cup whipping cream
3/4 cup powdered sugar
11/2 tablespoon milk
Preheat oven to 350. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. In a bowl combine the combine the raspberries, 1 1/2 tablespoon of sugar and lemon juice in a small bowl then set it aside
In another bowl combine the flour, baking powder and 1/2 cup of sugar. With 2 knives or a pastry cutter cut in the cubes of butter. This will be a crumbly mixture. You’ll want the pieces of butter to be small and pebbly. Add the cream and mix to combine. Do not over mix. Gently fold in the raspberries. By tablespoon full drop the dough onto the prepared cookie sheets making sure to keep them at least 1 inch apart. Bake for about 15 to 17 minutes or until lightly golden, do not over bake. When done remove them to a cooling rack. When they are cool you can combine the milk and powdered sugar and drizzle the mixture over the top of the cookies. Makes 2 dozen
My files, source unknown.
Â© Eileen Goltz holiday cookies 14a