Holiday Cookies

BigOven

Born from her childhood memories of festive holiday seasons in Sweden, Holiday Cookies by Elisabet der Nederlanden celebrates her lifelong love of baking around the holidays.

The six chapters of recipes will make delicious cookies. After a brief introduction from the author and a description of the inspiration for this book, you will find some excellent helpful hints and tricks which will help you with the recipes to come.

“Cookies Tips And Tricks” covers the basic techniques recommended for use with the recipes. “Decorating Cookies” offers some excellent suggestions on how to beautify your creations.

The “Royal Icing” recipe is separate from the rest as this will be an add-on to many of the actual cookie recipes. Detailed instructions offer the information necessary to create the consistency you’ll want for your various needs.

Finally, “Packaging Tips And Tricks” and “Storing Cookies” finish the brief introduction to the book.

The first chapter of cookie recipes begins with “Very Merry Classics”. These are your classic holiday cookies from Gingerbread Cookies to Chocolate Macaroons, Pinwheel Cookies, and Shortbread Rounds, etc.

If you are going to be sharing your holiday baking with friends, you will want to try the “Cookie Exchange Party” recipes. A Cookie Exchange is so much fun and is an excellent way to easily get variety without the hassle. With a Cookie Exchange, several friends can get together, each creating their own recipe, and then sharing the results. Everybody goes home with a nice variety of baked goods while only having had to create one recipe themselves.

For more information on how to host a Cookie Exchange see my article here. I do approve of the recipes chosen for the Cookie Exchange chapter. These will all travel well for the exchange.

For those looking to spice up their holiday gatherings, you will want the recipes from the “Warm Holiday Spice” chapter. Here is where you’ll find the most flavorful, spice cookies.

If you were thinking globally, then “Around The World” is where you’ll find a more international cookie. The author includes recipes from Sweden, Italy, Austria, South America, and more.

Get In The Spirit

Brittle, bark, caramels, truffles and other homemade candies make a great holiday gift. The recipes for these and more are in chapter 5 “Holiday Confections”. The lovely photo of the “Peppermint Bark” recipe truly puts you in the holiday spirit.

“Decorated Delights” is the final chapter. You’ll find cookie-cutter recipes for cookie ornaments, snaps, even an awesome 3D Christmas tree recipe. The “Stained-Glass Snowflakes” recipe is sure to be a hit. They are just so cute you will want to hang them in your window to catch the light, or even from the tree.

And if you’ve ever wanted to create your own Gingerbread House the recipe is here, with everything you need to make it from scratch. Because the recipe instructions are well described, they are therefore very easy to follow. Even something as complicated as a Gingerbread House seems a little less daunting.

After the recipes are all read and done, there are a final few pages of “Special Ingredients” and “Resources”. It would be helpful to read the “Special Ingredients” information before you go sourcing your ingredients. The “Resources” section will help you find those hard-to-find tools and spices and more.

The pictures included are lovely full-page and full-color. Sometimes if you’re not familiar with a recipe it is hard to know what it will look like which, therefore, makes it harder to create. These pictures will really help you imagine your creations. Planning a holiday bake? You would be hard-pressed to find a better set of recipes.

I chose the “Black And Whites” cookie recipe because they are an elegant looking cookie that would work for any occasion. And they have chocolate. ‘Nuf said.

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Black And Whites

With their spongy texture, these classic cookies are more like mini cakes. Instantly recognizable from their two-toned glaze of chocolate and vanilla, they have always felt like more than just an everyday cookie to me, which makes them perfect for the holidays. These cookies are best if served the day they are made.
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Black And Whites

With their spongy texture, these classic cookies are more like mini cakes. Instantly recognizable from their two-toned glaze of chocolate and vanilla, they have always felt like more than just an everyday cookie to me, which makes them perfect for the holidays. These cookies are best if served the day they are made.
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Instructions
  1. Position two oven racks, evenly spaced, in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 375 F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
To Make The Cookies:
  1. Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl then whisk in the salt. In the bowl of a stand mixer fixed with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and granulated sugar and beat on medium speed for three minutes, until light and creamy. Add the egg, yolk, and lemon zest and beat until incorporated. On low speed, add the flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk and beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Beat after each addition just until incorporated, and stopped to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Using the scoop or two tablespoons, drop the dough onto the baking sheets, spacing the cookies evenly.
  2. Bake the cookies for 14 to 16 minutes, until firm to the touch and golden on the edges, switching the baking sheets between the racks about halfway through the baking time. Transfer the baking sheets to wire racks and let cool for five minutes, then carefully transfer the cookies to the racks and let cool completely.
To Make The Glaze:
  1. In a bowl, whisk together the confectioners' sugar, 4 1/2 tablespoons of the milk, and vanilla until a smooth mixture forms. Pour a little more than half of the glaze into a short drinking glass. Sift the cocoa powder into the glaze remaining in the bowl, add the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons milk, and stir until smooth.
  2. Spoon 1/2 teaspoon of the white glaze over half of each cookie, keeping a straight line down the middle. When all the cookies have white glaze on them, spoon the same amount of chocolate glaze over the other half of each cookie. When all the cookies are glazed, let them sit on the wire racks for about one hour, until the glaze is firm, before serving.Spoon 1/2 teaspoon of the white glaze over half of each cookie, keeping a straight line down the middle. When all the cookies have white glaze on them, spoon the same amount of chocolate glaze over the other half of each cookie. When all the cookies are glazed, let them sit on the wire racks for about one hour, until the glaze is firm, before serving.
Notes

* Dutch-process cocoa powder, which has been "washed" in a solution to neutralize its acidity, is typically paired with baking powder, which is a mixture of an alkaline and an acid. It is lighter in flavor and darker in color than "natural" cocoa powder. Be sure always to use the type of cocoa powder called for in a recipe.

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