We had our first snowfall here on Thursday/Friday and that can only mean one thing: Christmas Baking! I know a lot of my American counterparts are still working on Thanksgiving menus, but us Canadians are way past that! Bring on the chocolate and candy canes! Oh my goodness… I’m all about the exclamation points today!
Ok, first things first… Eyes Bigger Than My Stomach is now on Facebook. Just click on the handy “F” icon over in the right hand column and you can follow along with me on Facebook. Exciting! (more exclamation points!) I am all about the moderninity, you bet!
One of the things I’ve found with Christmas baking is that if you’re doing a lot of it, (ie: cookie swaps, gift platters, or secret freezer stashes just for yourself, when nobody is looking…) you’ve got to have a system. An assembly line of baking if you will.
So, when I was flipping through the lovely complimentary Martha Stewart subscription that I get via my friend Laura, I got very excited when I saw the “One Dough, 30 Kinds of Cookies” article. That’s my kind of assembly line!
In all honesty, it should probably be called the “One Dough, a Bazillion Kinds of Cookies” because your imagination is the only limit. And you also get ingredient changes for four “flavours” of dough: citrus, spice, vanilla and chocolate.
I made one batch each of chocolate and vanilla and that gave me 120 drop/thumbprint cookies. I love thumbprint cookies as Martha calls them, or drop cookies as my Grandma called them. In fact, making them reminds me so much of her. When I was little we’d bake them together (she always let me “drop” the jam into the hole!) and she’d store them in giant 4L ice cream pails.
I’m feeling a bit squeamish about posting the recipe because it’s only available in the magazine at this point and I am a bit of a copyright stickler. So I’m not going to print it right now but once the December issue is off the shelves and the recipes are up on Martha Stewart’s site, I’ll come back and add it. But honestly, it’s worth picking up the magazine – there’s literally recipes for 30 different variations, as well as the ganaches, washes and icings.
So instead, you get lots of pictures! The baked up dough is ok – but you can dress it up so many ways that it’s not really a problem. If I was making regular cookies, I’d want something a bit tastier.
My only problems were… the dropping is done after baking, which I don’t remember doing. And it was tricky to freeze up the jam ones without the jam sticking to the freezer bags (don’t even try layering them…). And also, I’ve given up on having perfectly rounded edges on my cookies. pfffft. Yeah, you heard me… pfffft.
But, I made 7 kinds:
- chocolate filled with chocolate ganache
- vanilla filled with chocolate ganache
- chocolate filled with candied orange peel and chocolate ganache (my second favourite)
- chocolate rolled in crushed candy canes filled with ganache (my favouite)
- vanilla rolled in crushed candy canes filled with ganache
- vanilla filled with homemade raspberry jam
- vanilla filled with not homemade apricot jam
And last but not least, I took a plate of cookies, a big cup of chai and shot all the green plate photos in the snow. Snow, is a tricky, tricky thing to shoot against and we don’t get a lot of opportunities to practice in this part of the world. And my neighbours think I’m crazy!