White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies

IMG_8812 (1).jpg

This year has been a big year for my family. Lots and lots to celebrate! My dad turned 60 and my parents will celebrate their 40th Anniversary in just a few weeks! We needed it…because 2015 was a pretty heavy year.

There has also been lots of really good things for Ean, Nora and myself. I promise an update in the next couple of weeks…giving said big news the poper post it deserves.

Anyways…back to my parents and cookies. My parents took a trip in February to Hawaii to start this crazy good year off right. My mom asked what I would like for them to bring back before they left on the trip. I told her ‘Macadamia Nuts.’ And so they brought me several bags of these glorious little nuts…and I finally put the first bag to good use.

I can honestly say that white chocolate macadamia nut cookies have always been some of my favorites. Many times the ones I have had were lacking in nuts because they are so expensive…but this recipe is full of them, balancing the sweet and salty so nicely.

Jen’s White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup shortening

1/2 cup butter, softened

3/4 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup white sugar

2 eggs lightly beaten

1-2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 – 12 oz bag white chocolate chips

6 oz chopped macadamia nuts

In a medium bowl, mix flour, soda and salt together and set aside. Combine shortening, sugars and vanilla; beat until creamy. Add beaten eggs and flour mixture, alternating between the two. Mix well. Stir in white chocolate chips and macadamia nuts. If you have time, chill the dough for an hour in the refrigerator, this will help the cookies from becoming too flat. You can skip this step and the cookies will still be wonderful! Roll into balls (I like to use a 1 tablespoon cookie scoop) and bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Do not overbake. Once they have set on the cookie shoot for 5-8 minutes, place on a cooling rack.

Enjoy!

 

 

Peanut Butter Cookies

Peanut Butter Cookies

I can’t believe Thanksgiving is next week! So much baking to be done, and so many new recipes to try for the holidays! There are several classics that are so great this time of year too…like peanut butter cookies. They make a great addition to any cookie tray or as a cutely packaged and delicious gift!

Peanut Butter Cookies

1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 cup  granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup creamy peanut butter
3 cups + 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar, for rolling

Using a mixer, cream together butter and both sugars together on medium speed until smooth. Add eggs and mix until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add the vanilla and peanut butter and mix on high until combined. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. Dough will be thick, yet very sticky. Cover dough tightly and chill for at least 2hours in the refrigerator.

Preheat oven to 350F degrees.

Roll balls of dough (about 1.5 tablespoons of dough per cookie) and roll into granulated sugar. Place cookies 2 inches apart on the baking sheets. Press fork into the tops to create the criss-cross pattern. Bake for 10 minutes or until very lightly browned on the sides. Remove from the oven and let cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Enjoy!!!

 

 

 

French Macarons

lemonmacarons

The French Macaron. These light and delicious bit size treats are making their way onto every dessert table out there. One of the great things about these gorgeous little French cookies is that the color and flavor combinations are endless.  I had been wanting to make these for quite some time (Ok, I think they were on last years baking resolution list), but everything I read said they were a little bit hard to master, so I was a little intimidated. After three batches and feeling a tad bit like Goldy Locks, I will agree they are a little tricky. However, they are worth the effort!

French Macarons from Martha Stewart

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

3/4 cup almond flour

2 large egg whites, room temperature

Pinch of cream of tartar

1/4 cup superfine sugar

Pulse confectioners’ sugar and almond flour in a food processor until combined. Sift mixture 2 times.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Whisk whites with a mixer on medium speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar, and whisk until soft peaks form. Reduce speed to low, then add superfine sugar. Increase speed to high, and whisk until stiff peaks form, about 8 minutes. Sift flour mixture over whites, and fold until mixture is smooth and shiny.

Transfer batter to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain round tip, and pipe 3/4-inch rounds 1 inch apart on parchment-lined baking sheets, dragging pastry tip to the side of rounds rather than forming peaks. Tap bottom of each sheet on work surface to release trapped air. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Bake 1 sheet at a time, rotating halfway through, until macarons are crisp and firm, about 10 minutes. After each batch, increase oven temperature to 375 degrees, heat for 5 minutes, then reduce to 325 degrees.

Let macarons cool on sheets for 2 to 3 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack. (If macarons stick, spray water underneath parchment on hot sheet. The steam will help release macarons.)

Lemon Filling a Jen Campbell creation

1 cup sugar

3 eggs

1/2 cup fresh lemon juice

2 tablespoons lemon zest

1/2 cup butter, melted

In a medium sauce pan, combine sugar and eggs until Stir in lemon juice, lemon zest and butter. Cook over medium heat until is thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon. Remove and let cool.

Sandwich 2 same-size macarons with 1 teaspoon filling. Serve immediately, or stack between layers of parchment, wrap in plastic, and freeze for up to 3 months.

Orange Creamsicle Cookies

Orange Creamsicle Cookies
Spring is almost here (I say that and there is snow on the ground as I type, but the weatherman promised spring like temps next week), and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than with these Orange Creamsicle from Six Sister’s Stuff. I was very excited to try these and they did not disappoint. The flavor is light and smooth just like a sweet creamsicle.
Orange Creamsicle Cookies
 
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1/4 teaspoon orange extract
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons orange zest (for me that was the zest of 2 oranges)
2 cups white chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and creamy. Beat in egg and vanilla until smooth. Gradually add flour mixture until combined. Stir in orange zest and white chocolate chips.

Drop rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Do not flatten cookies; it will make them dry. Bake 8 – 10 minutes or until golden brown around edges. Do not overcook! Cookies will be plump. Cool for several minutes on cookie sheets before transferring to rack to cool completely. Store in airtight container.

Chocolate Overload Cookies

I hope you had a good weekend…I had the opportunity to attend a friend’s 30th Birthday MadMen party and I got to hit some thrift stores…so all in all it was a great one.

These cookies are loaded with white and semi-sweet chocolate chips…a chocolaty delicious cookie. Quite yummy.

I think my favorite thing about this image is the metal gingham tray I found while thrifting this weekend. They make me happy.

Chocolate Overload Cookies

from Recipe Girl

makes 5 dozen

1 1/4 cups butter, at room temperature

1 cup granulated white sugar
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (12-ounce) package white chocolate chips
1 (11.5 ounce) package semi-sweet chocolatePreheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In large bowl, cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add in eggs and vanilla; beat well.

In separate bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Blend into creamed mixture just until combined. Stir in chips.

Drop by Tablespoonfuls on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 10-11 minutes, or until slightly set. Do not overbake- cookies will be soft, and will puff while baking and flatten while cooling. Cool slightly and then remove from cookie sheet to rack.

My Mom’s Gingersnaps

These are, hands down, the best gingersnaps ever…they just happen to be my mom’s recipe.They are so soft and delicious! Even if you don’t like gingersnaps normally, I would encourage you to try these.  They are great to keep in the house this time of year because you can use them with pumpkin dip, trifles or in crusts…or just eat them plain!

Linda’s Gingersnaps makes about 3 dozen

3/4 cup shortening

1 cup sugar, plus more for rolling

1 egg, slightly beaten

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon ginger

2 teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 teaspoon clove

4 Tablespoons molasses

Thoroughly cream together shortening and sugar. Add beaten egg. In a separate bowl, combine flour, ginger, soda, cinnamon and cloves. Add to shortening and sugar mixture, beat until smooth. Beat in molasses. Roll into a small ball and roll in sugar. Bake at 350 F until tops are lightly brown, about 10 minutes.

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

I found these yummy little cookies while on Pintrest a couple of weeks back. I thought they would be a great fall cookie. I was a little disappointed in the recipe at first, it seemed like some of the ingredients were off on the measurements. I ended up improvising and making a few changes and here is the end result.

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

2 cups butter, softened

2 cups granulated sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 15-ounce can pumpkin

5 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

4 cups powdered sugar

Ground cinnamon (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, beat 2 cups butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add granulated sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Beat until combined, scraping bowl occasionally. Add eggs and 2 teaspoons vanilla; beat until combined. Beat in pumpkin. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour.

Drop dough by heaping teaspoons 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until tops are set. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; let cool.

In a small saucepan, heat 1/2 cup butter and brown sugar until melted and smooth. Transfer to a medium bowl. Stir in milk and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat in powdered sugar until smooth. Spread frosting on cookies. If desired, sprinkle with additional cinnamon. Makes about 60 cookies.

Recipe adapted from Better Homes & Gardens