Thursday, December 18, 2008

The Thursday Three

What's a holiday without cookies? What's a Thursday without T3? And thanks to Susan, aka My Two Cents for the idea of combining the two.

Favorite Holiday Cookies (and a recipe or two)

#1. Shortbread. This recipe came from my friend Monique a long, long time ago, and it's still my favorite shortbread ever. Absolutely delicious. And easy. Did I mention easy?

Monique's Scotch Shortbread

5 oz. softened sweet butter
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup flour

Mix. Press in pie pan. Prick top all over with a fork. Bake 30 minutes at 325 degrees. Cut warm. Sprinkle with sugar. Eat the whole pan. (Oh, alright. I added that last part).

#2. Pfefferneuse. Well, specifically Trader Joe's Pfefferneuse. For years, we would get care packages from my mom -either through the mail or in person. The Pfefferneuse season at TJ's usually runs from right before Thanksgiving to New Years. I don't know what it is that makes these so good, but for the entire month of December my family runs around with powdered sugar rings around our mouths. Not this year, though. In the great TJ's Pfefferneuse shortage of 2008 (why would I expect anything less this year, seriously?) they changed their packaging and ran out almost immediately. We have a recipe to try at the lake next week. Cross your fingers.

#3. Gingersnaps.
We all love gingersnaps, and these are the best I've ever had. The fact that they're low-fat is a complete bonus. We don't normally dip them, but if you have the desire, it just makes them twice as good. We made a batch of these this week and Gumby and Surfer Dude took them in to class "just because". Surfer Dude was thrilled when his teacher threatened him with repeating sixth grade unless he brought in more cookies.

Funny aside about these cookies. I use a lot of spices in my cooking and have a pretty comprehensive spice cupboard. The turnover is pretty high, since I believe what I read about spices losing their flavor over time. But I had bought a restaurant supply size bottle of ground ginger which continued to smell and taste just fine. I used it rarely, because with most things needing ginger I used fresh. Well, we used the last three teaspoons of it in these cookies - and it was the end of an era. We had moved this bottle of ginger to Kansas with the summer of 1999.

That's some seriously potent stuff.


Janie said...

I can't post recipes...but, I'd like to participate.

How bout you make all this stuff and mail it to me...

And I'll give you a food review!

Anonymous said...

Sounds good RC, perfect in fact. I'm having a teen cooking making night at my house on Friday. I LOVE shortbread. I'll have to dig up some of my favorites and share them with you.

ped crossing said...

I was going to try the p cookies this year too. I'm still going to stop by Trader Joe's. I need a few other things as well.

Kaytabug said...

making pfeffernusse cookies is a pain in the butt. At least they are melt in your mouth yummy. But my recipe does not coat in pwd sugar, not that mine is the only way it makes me wonder how many different ways there are to make them!

Thank you so much for sharing the Shortbread recipe. I LOVE shortbread!

The cookies I have on my To Make List are My Grandma's Sugar cookies(cut outs), her Peppermint balls, and my other Grandma's Rum balls, and Gingerbread cookies. The last ones are a new addition to my must haves!

The Finely Tuned Woman said...

In The Netherlands they are called 'pepernoten' and they are not coated in sugar. I never hear of anyone making them themselves, because you can by very good ones from a company named 'Bolletje.' They are the best and I can eat them non stop.

Kaycie said...

1. Snowballs are one of our favorites. Basically, they're homemade pecan sandies rolled into balls and then coated in powdered sugar while still hot. Heaven!

2. Chocolate Crinkles, a rich chocolate cookie rolled in powdered sugar before baking.

3. Last but not least: chewy chocolate cookies with white chocolate chips.

my two cents said...

We have a lot of cookies we like at Christmas: Two kinds of spritz (does life get any easier than spritz cookies?), chocolate candy cane crackles, shortbread, butter cookies with sprinkles, chocolate dipped orange cookies, gingerbread men, biscotti, the list goes on...Time is runing out to make them all.

Kaycie, I would love the recipe for your chewy chocolate cookies with white chocolate chips! If you e-mail it to RC, maybe she would send it on to me. RC, I am going to e-mail you the chocolate candy cane crackles recipe becuase if you like mint chip ice cream, I think you will like these!!

Daryl said...

I just gained weight reading the recipes!

And I am not sure I believe those myths about spices or mascara having limited 'shelf life' ... I have some spices that go back to the early 90s .. maybe even older .. I havent baked in .. forever .. maybe I should toss out all the old stuff .. of course then I will likely decide I need to bake and have to buy all new ... sigh, I will think about this after the new year

Great post!