Saturday, December 09, 2006

Time to bake!! Whee!

Last night I sat down and made the list of holiday baking to do. The last couple years I've gotten a little carried away with it, because we go to Ohio and I don't have to cook the actual holiday meal. And the cookies are a good thing to hand out to everyone - these days, hand made anything is considered a real treat.

By the time I made a list of all the old favorites, there wasn't much room for anything new and fun to be added (each year I like to try something new, which often gets added to the old favorites list, making the list grow every year).

Here then, is the proposed (NOT FINAL - stuff gets ditched as time runs out) baking list for Christmas 2006:
-Buckeyes (chocolate-dipped peanut butter candies)
-the date cookies
-toffee chip shortbread cookies (roll and slice, very fast)
-Snickerdoodles (rolled in colored sugar to look festive)
-cut out cookies (geckos - a tradition I started in Hawaii)
-lemon cookies (a successful experiment from last year)
-macaroons (really fast and everyone oohs)
-scandinavian orange bars (like soft biscotti - fast to make)

And the new experiments:
-chocolate dipped arrowroot cookies (a joke for my father-in-law)
-macadamia lace cookies
-ginger bars (I hope these work like fast gingerbread, 'cause I hate making gingerbread)

Other than the buckeyes, date cookies, and cutouts, nothing is labor intensive. I get out my cookie scoop (small-sized ice cream scoops, available at restaurant supply stores) and the silicon parchment paper, and can whip through a batch of cookies in an hour. I also start with the more classic 'cookie cookies' because they freeze well - do them two or three weeks early and chuck them in the freezer.

Once the freezer's full, I quit baking. That's the rule. Haha.

Before I had The Baby, when we were in Hawaii, I would mail out baked goods instead of Christmas cards... The baking would start the day after Thanksgiving, and everything would be in the mail (still frozen, usually) by the second week of December and I would sit back and drink Cosmopolitans while the thank-yous would roll in.

This whole waiting and baking fresh is a new idea, but it's kind of fun to hand the stuff directly to the people who get it.

I love baking.

I hope I don't gain 20 pounds this Christmas.


Sheepish Annie said...

Still haven't started the baking. Still not done with the knitting. Only just started the shopping. The doctor tells me I've gained six pounds.

I'm doomed.

And yet I rejoice in the successes of others for I am truly a fine example of world citizenship. Impressive work on the to-do list!

April said...


Nah, not our Julie.

Julie said...

Hah on the overachiever.

More like weird and crazy.

I really do like to bake, and I make the husbeast do the parts I don't like. (Like rolling the peanut butter filling into little balls.)

Bells said...

How many people are you baking for Julie? 75?????

That's incredible.

I'll be making gingerbread men just prior to Christmas and then I'm travelling 20 hours in the heat, so I doubt I'll be taking anything too adventurous with us!

And as for getting the blokes to do the jobs we don't like - I'm doing that right now. He's standing in front of the stove making the buttermilk pancakes. I'll just do the fun part of covering them in raspberries in a while. :-)

NeedleTart said...

Looks just like my New Year's cookie list. Your not an over achiever, your organized!
(the Dr. tells me I gained 8 pounds this year).

Anonymous said...

Lace cookies - are beautiful to see as well as tasty. They are my husbands new favorite over russian tea cookies. Made 4 batches already. Serious tip 1 - they really spread out so keep em only a few per sheet ie 9 is the Max on a Large baking sheet. Tip 2 1st batch takes about 1 min longer then the rest of the batches - just having the cookie sheet warm reduces the cooking time by a minute - watch em close or they burn.

Julie said...

Shelley, thanks for the advice!

Rae said...

i'm so curious about the freezing and mailing part. Do you put frozen cookies in a regular package, and they thaw in transit? I like the idea, but I can't envision it actually working (and since my last attempt to mail fresh cookies bombed because the cookies went bad very quickly, I'm extra curious). And tell me about those cookies that freeze well!!

LOVE the list.