Five Days of Holiday Baking Recipes: First Up, My Top Secret Cookies..."Hey, Martha, Check These Out!"
I've decided to take a few days off from writing about soap making classes and instead share with you some of my favorite holiday recipes. Family and close friends know that I'm an avid baker, but I rarely have time to indulge in whipping up culinary delights - now it's whipping up cosmetic formulations. But in the early 1990s I dreamed of continuing my education at Johnson & Wales culinary school in Rhode Island. My dream was to start a biscotti baking company. I was obsessed with biscotti back then. But thankfully a few years later I made a solitary batch of soap that would forever change my life....in a remarkable way. I digress.
My gift to you this holiday season are five days of recipes - not just any recipes but ones that have become an annual tradition for my daughter (now 16) and me. I first started making these in 1990, just four years before she was born. Each year I take photos of us baking together. And I cherish these recipes I'm about to share.
Why this Top Secret Holiday Cookies Recipe? First, I've never received so many compliments and rave reviews on a cookie recipe in my life. Honestly. You'll see. Second, they store in an airtight container for up to a month (which is important if you are shipping them to friends and family overseas). They also freeze well. Lastly, a recipe doesn't get much easier than this.
My hope is that these recipes will be near and dear to your heart. Special thanks to Grandma June and Grandma Zinetta Smith, who both passed along their love for baking to me. Thank you for the childhood memories of watching in awe as you baked with joy and love. I will never forget those majical moments. And to you, dear readers, remember to add an extra pinch of joy and love to all your recipes.
Enjoy! Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
Sweetest Holiday Wishes,
Top Secret Holiday Cookies Recipe
by Marla Bosworth
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
3 2/3 cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup sour cream
Dash of love
Dash of joy
1/2 cup butter
1 lb. confectionery sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
4 Tbsp. milk
Sprinkling of peace and kindness
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Cream together butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla. In separate bowl, mix all dry ingredients. Alternately add half the dry ingredients, then half the sour cream. Repeat until dry ingredients and sour cream are incorporated into the mix. Place dough in plastic wrap or plastic bag and refrigerate for at least two hours or preferably overnight.
Roll dough onto floured board until 1/4 inch thick. Roll it thinner than most cookies, as it will rise slightly during baking. Using your favorite cookie cutters, work your magic by using up all the dough!
Bake on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper (I like the way they turn out this way). Bake 4-6 minutes. Keep a close eye on them, as they get dark around the edges easily. Cool and frost.
Frosting Instructions: Place softened (not melted) butter in bowl. Add confectionery sugar, vanilla and milk. Beat until smooth. Store unused frosting in airtight container. Although it decorates smoothly, it will harden within a few hours.
Decorating Tips: My daughter likes to divide the frosting into at least five bowls and color each one with food coloring. We use a variety of sprinkles (jimmies for you New Englanders), colored sugar, and candies.
(Want to reprint? Please email email@example.com.)