Monday, December 4, 2017

National Cookie Day!

An assortment of cookies for Christmas
December 4th is National Cookie Day.  As far as we're concerned, the entire month of December should be called National Cookie Month!  We baked so many cookies at Afternoon Tea in December, that we couldn't even begin to guess at the number.   However, some things never change, because every December we still bake scads and scads of cookies for our own personal entertaining and gifting needs!

We bake them for cookie trays that we assemble for our offices, the kids' schools, our doctor's and dentist's offices, etc.  We bake them for the neighborhood cookie exchange, and we create treat bags full of them to hand out to the kids, pop into Christmas gift bags and gift baskets, give to the delivery drivers who come by with packages each day, and take with us to munch on while driving around sightseeing the Christmas lights all around the city.

Shortbread Cookies ready for gifting
Since we know you will be doing much of the same, we think it's a great idea to gather your friends or family together to bake some Holiday cookies this year.  It doesn't even have to be on National Cookie Day ... we'll never tell!  The more hands to roll, cut out, bake and decorate, the better!  And the more fun!

Recipes are everywhere, although we're partial to the tried-and-true recipes in our Cookies cookbook.  We know those recipes work consistently, there's no risk of a bad batch ever, and we know people love them.  Nevertheless, I might try a new recipe, too, since I'm always up for something new.  And I will definitely be making a variation of the famous Truly Magic Bars (probably with a tropical twist), and we encourage you to do the same!

We're getting our aprons on and starting our cookie-baking extravaganza.  So it's a good time to share some of my favorite cookies from our collection that I'll probably be baking for Christmas this year:

Cut-Out Sugar Cookies
Cut-Out Sugar Cookies
It just wouldn't be Christmas without a large batch of decorated Cut-Out Sugar Cookies in various shapes, like this pile of sweet Christmas Trees.

Your Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies
Because they are pretty much everybody's favorite cookie (don't deny it!), I always make sure to include them on every holiday tray.  A plate full of holiday cookies, with a few chocolate chip cookies snuck in, round out the assortment for everyone!

Rum Balls
Rum Balls
Decadent chocolatey cake-crumb balls soaked in rum, rolled in chocolate jimmies, nuts or cocoa powder ... what could be more festive on the adult's dessert table?

Shortbread Cookies
These cookies are so traditional at Christmas time, as folks reach for those red plaid-wrapped boxes on the store shelves.  The real secret, though, is how easy these cookies are to make!.  Five ingredients mixed and pressed into a baking pan, and you'll end up with the freshest, butteriest cookies you've ever sunk your teeth into.

Linzer Cookies
Linzer Cookies
These traditional cookies made with ground hazelnuts and raspberry jam, are the tastiest and most festive cookies on the platter!  They'll even have Santa reaching for more, even after a night full of cookies and milk!

Fudge Brownies
Because everyone loves the fudgy goodness of brownies, they just can't be missing from the baking schedule.  Luckily enough, it's one of the easiest recipes ever, and the most delicious brownies you'll ever bite into!

A pan of Jelly Slices in the oven
Jelly Slices
These bar cookies are delightful and so delicious, and a good way to put an extra jar of jelly in the pantry to good use.  They are colorful and look almost like stained glass -- absolutely beautiful on any plate.  While we always made them with grape jelly at the bakery, you can use any flavor of jelly you like.

Truly Magic Bars
I mentioned that I will no doubt be making a batch of these scrumptious bars, but thinking about leaving out the chocolate chips and adding candied pineapple bits, lots of coconut, and macadamia nuts, instead.  That's the wonderful thing about Truly Magic Bars ... you can customize them and vary the layers of ingredients you use to totally customize them to your favorite flavor profile.  I've never tried this version before, but I thought I'd give it a shot!

Well, this sounds like a pretty good beginning.  I'd better start baking!  Happy National Cookie Day!!

Enjoy previous seasonal blog posts:

Christmas Notes
There's always time to bake Christmas cookies!
Cookie Trays!
Our most popular gift and party tray, it's the perfect way to spread the Holiday cheer!
Black Friday
It's not just about the shopping.  If you do it right, it can be about connecting, too.
A Cabin in the Woods
Getting away from it all is a tradition worth keeping.
Counting our blessings ... may they always be plentiful and abundant.
Caring for Holiday Guests
Breakfast burritos can make you a winning host!
What's Your Favorite Cake?
If only I could pick just one! With so many great recipes to choose from, deciding on a favorite isn't easy.
It's Baking Season!
On your marks, get set ... go!!
Pumpkin Pie
Have you ever made a pie from fresh pumpkin instead of canned?  Do it!  It's not difficult and so worth it!
Can't stay out of the kitchen on Thanksgiving!
A Difficult Anniversary
A few years ago we lost our Mom.  It feels like it was just yesterday.  The anniversary of a great loss is always hard.
It's All About Family
Giving thanks and honoring those who came before.

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