Tag Archive: cookies

Spiced Apple Oatmeal Cookie Bars & Cookbook Review

Cookbook Cover

Cookies in Minutes Cover from which I produced this bag of mix!

I was lucky enough to win this sweet cookie book Cookies in Minutes by Mable and Gar Hoffman from Robin at Simply Southern Baking. Have you checked out her blog? You should if you like good Southern baking cuisine.

Robin introduces herself this way: “Welcome to Simply Southern Baking. I’m Robin, the girl behind the recipes wishing I had more time to spend in the kitchen!”
This is a baker after my own heart.

You should check her out on Pinterest too.  She has the best mix of recipes. I drool all over my keyboard just reading the recipes!  She also has a delightful selection of cookbooks on a pin board. I’m sure I need some of these. Friend her on Facebook too.

I collect cookbooks as I’m sure you do. I can tell you where I’ve travelled by my cookbook collection. Then I have my favorites – like my mom’s Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook – the 1947 edition.

I love to make cookies. It is sort of therapeutic to mix up, spoon out, bake and cool and store all those little desserts. At Christmas, when I have all my baking done, I can begin to package up various goodies for all my friends, I love to look at all the different colors, shapes and sizes. (Doesn’t take much to make me happy!) :)

What I think I like best about this book are the cookie mix recipes. I tried the Oatmeal- Cookie Mix and made a delicious Spiced Apple Oatmeal Bar. It was a little dry the first day, but after an overnight stay wrapped in foil, they were moist and delicious. The nutmeg in the icing was just right. Now I have an extra package of mix already made up for some Hasty Oatmeal Fruit Drop cookies.

It’s too bad this book is out of print.  But I will gladly share recipes with you from time-to-time so you can have a taste of Cookies in Minutes.

Spiced Apple Oatmeal Bars

Lucky Charmers for St. Patrick’s Day

Kim (a dear foodie friend at my office) told me she thought a cookie she saw on Tumbleweed Contessa’s Facebook page looked great. She asked why I hadn’t made that for them. I never realized people think I make all those wonderful things you all post to FB! So, I told her I’d make them. I frantically went to FB to find the recipe. However, it was from a boxed cake mix. I prefer “scratch” cookies.

I got the idea, but adapted it to fit my favorite cookie recipe. Everybody is raving about these here at work. They love Lucky Charms. I don’t think I ever bought Lucky Charms cereal. (I’m certain my children will correct me.) It took me forever to find them on the grocery aisle with all those cereals. Now I have this opened box of cereal in my pantry. To use up some more I put one of the little marshmallows on the top of each cookie for an added attraction and because Kim said she loved those little marshmallows.

St. Patrick’s Day in El Paso isn’t one of the biggest celebrations, but we try. What do you do to celebrate St. Patty’s Day? Tell me tomorrow on What’d You Do This Weekend? We can make it a BIG GREEN party!

Lucky Charmers

Red Hot Chocolate Chip Cookies

Red Hot Chocolate Chip Cookies

Don’t you just love cookies?  I love cookies and I love to make them.  Something about a cookie….it’s a total dessert or snack you can grab and no mess involved.  It’s not messy nor any dishes involved.  The perfect bite.

I started thinking about Valentine’s Day before the Super Bowl.  It was really hard to drag myself from it to make anything for our Super Bowl & Chili party.  I had to focus on appetizers all the while wanting to make some valentines.  So I decided I could bake some cookies and maybe get it out of my system.  It did not work.  This served as a delaying distraction though.

I baked them in a silicone heart-shaped cupcake pan.  I did not fill them all the way.  I used about 1 ½ of the smallest ice cream scoops of the batter and pressed in into the form.  Let them cool before trying to remove them. I pressed the red hot in the center as soon as I took them out of the oven.  (I could not find heart shaped red hots in January.)

Don’t forget to stop by to see and share at my weekly party.

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Wonderland Bars

When I see a recipe that everyone is so excited about I go way back to “the olden days” as my children used to say and begin to remember something I made or had to eat.  That is where this came from.  Actually it came from my best friend in high school, Linda, who made these.  I don’t remember eating one, but I’m sure I must have.  I remember her making them. Not from a recipe though.  So I guess it was one of those that she had learned from her sister and could just throw together.  I was amazed.  We never used sweetened condensed milk or graham cracker crumbs from a box that I could remember.  My momma always made everything from “scratch.”  I’m sure that is because that is how she learned to do it from her mother.

As I began to see versions of this on other blogs I had to make some.  I have a group from my church who usually plan for me to make a dessert.  So I had to make this one for one of our potluck dinners before our study.  As it turned out, we did our study and then planned an entire series of soup lunches for Lent.  I don’t know how we got around to that from our study; however I think it turned out to be quite productive.  We are a small group.  I hope everybody does their part.

Anyway, back to the Wonderland Bars.  That’s what Linda called them in high school.  I’m sure you have an entirely different name for them and perhaps a little different version of the recipe.  Mine is pretty simple, high in calories and wonderfully rich.

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Cookies for Sandy Hook–Oscar the Grouch Peppermint Cookies

CookiesforSandyHook

I am happy to be participating in this event to support the victims of Sandy Hook. Baking and cooking is my way to show I care.  I think of those sweet, sweet children and it makes me think of Sesame Street.  If the world were more like that then we would never have had to face this tragedy.  So, from my kitchen via my heart as an offering of support here are some Oscar the Grouch Cookies.

We can all start to change the world today. We can have more empathy and humanity for each other to help build a kinder, gentler world where these things can’t happen.  I say this prayer for all of us.

Don’t forget to come and meet my new friend at New Friend Friday.  Grandma Loy from Grandma Loy’s kitchen.  I am a Grandmother too and us Grandma’s have lots of tips and tricks to share with the younger generation.

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Sweet 2 Eat Baking

Peppermint Roundup

I have been really into Peppermint this month.  I have added it to lots of recipes.  So, here is a round up in case you want to put together your own Peppermint Party.

Pink Peppermint Christmas Chip Cookies 

  • 1 cup Crisco solid shortening (not butter flavored)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 18 drops red food coloring
  • 1 teaspoon Mexican vanilla
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon soda
  • 1 cup Andes Peppermint Crunch baking chips
  • 1 cup Nestle Toll House Holiday Semi-Sweet Morsels  (red and green)

Cream together Crisco, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, food coloring and eggs until light and fluffy.  Sift together dry ingredients and add to creamed mixture.  Mix chips in by hand to avoid crushing the chips.

I used a small cookie scoop to measure equal size cookies on insulated cookie sheets.

Bake at 350° for 15 minutes on insulated cookie sheets (shorter time on dark or non-stick pans)

Cool on waxed paper and store in air-tight container.

Peppermint Snowball

Sharing with Hammock Tracks and Mrs. Happy Homemaker and:
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Grandmother’s Christmas Cookies

I decided to be a part of this wonderful cookie swap program.  This has been fun.  Although I will say I have worried more about which cookie to bake and how to pack them than anything else.  I hope these arrived to you safe and sound.  I felt very proud of myself to get them packaged, labeled and shipped off before the deadline!

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap brings together food bloggers from around the world in celebration of all things scrumptious. The premise is this: Sign up. Receive the addresses of three other food bloggers. Send each of them one dozen delicious homemade cookies. Receive three different boxes of scrumptious cookies from other bloggers. Eat them all yourself or share if you want. Post your cookie recipe on your blog. See everyone else’s cookie recipes. Salivate. Get lots of great ideas for next year’s cookie swap. Rinse and repeat.

This year we are even more excited to be partnering with Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, a national non-profit organization committed to funding new therapies used in the fight against pediatric cancer, which claims the lives of more children in the US than any other disease. By participating in this cookie swap you are not only contributing to the food blogger community, but also supporting a great cause.

This is the part that got my attention.  Why not?  And I got the cutest little cookie spatula from OXO.  That part was totally unexpected and unnecessary.  Next year watch for this opportunity.  I will certainly help spread the word.

The swap is hosted by Lindsay of Love and Olive Oil and Julie from The Little Kitchen.  Thanks so much ladies.  This combines all my favorite things-cooking, sharing, caring and cookies!

I got some great cookies from Ashley at Cookie Monster Cooking.  How cute is that name for a food blog?  Head over to her site and check out the cookies she made for me.  The cookies she sent me reminded me of my Peppermint Snowballs.  So, cookies truly do inspire more cookies for me.  Lets hope that vegetables inspire vegetables in January!

I was sent three names to bake cookies for, mail them by December 5 and post this on December 12.  That’s a lot of instructions to keep up with, but I did it.

Be sure to check out my three cookie swap matches.  I’ve cooked for and met people from the Washington state,  New York City and Orlando.  Imagine that, little ole me from El Paso, TX!

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Chewy, Peppermint, Fudgy, Brownie Cookies

I participated in the Great Food Bloggers Cookie Swap for the first time.  It is for a good cause, to raise money for Kids with Cancer.  And I got a gift. This cute little spatula is perfect for my cookies.  I love it!  This is not the recipe I shared with my 3 secret bloggers.  The reveal date is coming soon and I am having a hard time keeping a secret.

If you like chewy, fudgy, chocolatey food, these might fill the bill.  The peppermint is a little extra kick.  I have discovered these Andes Peppermint Crunch baking chips.  I love them. No need to smash up candy canes!  Unless you need to release some tension, then go right ahead.  I prefer the gentler touch for my baking.   So, I topped these cookies off with the Peppermint M&Ms (red and white).

It was about 10 o’clock when I finished these up.  I turned on the ceiling fan to cool them so I could package them and go to bed.  The house smelled delicious as I drifted off.  Sweet dreams!

Don’t forget to come and meet my new friends Stacey and Aubrey from Real Housemoms at New Friend Friday.  These are real ladies who are real friends with really great ideas!  Check out their linky party on Friday too:
Real Housemoms

 

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Dreaming All Day

Sweet 2 Eat Baking

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Peppermint Snowballs

Peppermint Snowball

These have a very mellow/soft peppermint taste.  With the powdered sugar maybe that tones it down a bit.  I don’t like strong peppermint.  These were easy to make and look so nice.  The second roll in powdered sugar makes a difference.  I’m going to make another batch.  These went very fast at work.  But I think if it is homemade they love just about anything.  If the young guys tell me they like something I make and come back for seconds I know it is a keeper.

I think these will become a favorite to repeat each year.  I hope you enjoy them.  I thought they looked very nice on this little tray.  I received it one year with a cheese ball on it.  I really treasure the little things I collect over the years and the memories that go with them.  Don’t you?


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Pink Peppermint Christmas Chip Cookies

I had a friend, Debbie, who loved Christmas.  She spent the entire year picking up Christmas gifts for friends and she kept recorded in a notebook who she gave what to, which year.  I am never that organized, nor will I be.  She did come up with the most creative, meaningful things for each person.  She got on a program of giving me Lladro Christmas bells – one for each year.  I think I have 10 or 11.  So you can see how long we were friends.  The year she passed away was the end of a series.  I treasure them.

I was always looking for something special for her too.  I found a set of Santa’s reindeer dessert plates in a catalog one year. That was it!  I had found something she didn’t have that would be perfect.  Each year on Christmas evening she had her extended family and friends to dinner.  Dessert was cookies or pies.  So these plates would be the perfect addition to her collection of Christmas dishes.

Every year she borrowed my Christmas china to add to hers. (We put a dot of red nail polish on the back of mine so we could tell the difference.)  Combined there was enough for everyone.  So I gave her two sets of these plates and she called that afternoon to have me bring mine too.  They were a hit with everyone.

I think about Debbie every year at Christmas.  I still miss her and the fun times we had.  She loved to laugh.  Which reminds me of a story.

One year she gave my family tickets to go with them to a Christmas concert at the historic train station here.  I got there early and was trying to save seats for us all together.  When they arrived they were almost late and she came up the steps in a huff.  I told her we couldn’t sit together and she said, “I know.  It’s not my fault.”  I said it again. She looked at me and nearly fell over laughing.  Without ever knowing it we had bought the same sweaters for Christmas.  Our children saw us and walked totally away and wouldn’t come near us the entire concert.  We went to dinner after the concert and they wouldn’t sit at the same table as we did.  We thought it was funny.  We did a lot of things the same and liked the same things.  These cute little plates are just one of many such things.

Good friends make good memories.  I treasure mine with Debbie.  Christmas is a special time to recount those blessings and be warmed by those memories

These cookies have nothing to do with these plates.  I was trying to decide which plate to use to take a picture and this blog is a result of that.  Memories…that’s what it’s all about with me.

 

Pink Peppermint Christmas Chip Cookies 

  • 1 cup Crisco solid shortening (not butter flavored)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 18 drops red food coloring
  • 1 teaspoon Mexican vanilla
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon soda
  • 1 cup Andes Peppermint Crunch baking chips
  • 1 cup Nestle Toll House Holiday Semi-Sweet Morsels  (red and green)

Cream together Crisco, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, food coloring and eggs until light and fluffy.  Sift together dry ingredients and add to creamed mixture.  Mix chips in by hand to avoid crushing the chips.

I used a small cookie scoop to measure equal size cookies on insulated cookie sheets.

Bake at 350° for 15 minutes on insulated cookie sheets (shorter time on dark or non-stick pans)

Cool on waxed paper and store in air-tight container.

These freeze well if they last that long.  Don’t forget to stop by and meet my new friend at New Friend Friday.  Melissa from Dancing for Food.  That is two Melissa’s in a row if you are counting.  This Melissa is a dancer and a foodie.  What a fascinating combination.