Thursday, January 1, 2009

Operation Baking Gals, Round 5

This was my care package for Operation Baking Gals, Round 5, sent to a soldier named Dustin. I wish I could have packed the whole Christmas tree in the box along with mugs of steamy hot chocolate and a gentle falling snow.

I feel so bad for the soldiers that are away for Christmas, and their families. But all I can do is send my box of cookies and say my prayers for their quick and safe return.

Here are the cookies I made...

Butter Crunch Cookies

This was my favorite cookie from this year's cookie exchange with my cake decorating club. They were made by Ceil Kessler, who always manages to make the tastiest treats. This cookie is strangely addictive... I wasn't in love with them at first, but I keep on sampling them and before I knew it the only thing I wanted in life was more of these cookies. I believe this this recipe comes from

2 C. butter, softened
2 C. sugar
3 C. all-purpose flour
2 tsp. cream of tarter
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
4 C. Cornflakes, lightly crushed
1 C. chopped pecans

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Combine the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture and mix well. Stir in the cornflakes and pecans.

Scoop by spoonful and place on an ungreased cookie sheet, or cover sheet with parchment paper. *don't use a silpat, I tried one and they spread like crazy* Bake in a 350 degree oven for 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned.

Makes about 8 dozen

Candy Cane Snowballs

This was my favorite cookie from last year's cookie exchange with my cake decorating club, and was made by Sue Tickel, who wins every cake decorating contest she enters. They come from Taste of Home.

2 C. butter, softened
1 C. powdered sugar
3-1/2 C. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C. chopped pecans
8 oz. white chocolate or white candy coating
1/3 to 1/2 C. crushed peppermint candy

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and powdered sugar. Stir in vanilla. Gradually add flour. Stir in pecans. Refrigerate for 3-4 hours or until easy to handle.

Roll into 1 inch balls. Place 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool. In a microwave-safe bowl, melt white chocolate or candy coating; stir until smooth. Dip the top of each cookie into the candy coating, then into the peppermint candy.

Makes 5 dozen.

Sugar Spiral Cookies

This is my normal sugar cookie recipe, which you can find at the bottom of ----> this post. Or I'm sure any sugar cookie dough would work.

What I did is to roll the whole batch of dough into as close of a rectangle as I could, maybe a little less than 1/4 inch thick. You don't want them too thick or you won't have a very big spiral (unless of course, you want them that way). My rectangle was maybe 8 inches deep by however long that made them. I trimmed the edges to make a clean rectangle.

I sprinkled a whole gob of red sanding sugar over the rectangle and then pressed it in slightly using my rolling pin. I then rolled them up into a log.

I wet the edge a little so it would hold the spiral shut. Then refrigerated the log until well chilled. At least a half hour. Then I sliced into 1/4 inch slices, chilled for a little while, and baked like normal.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Of course, I had to do like everyone else in the blogosphere and try the famous New York Times Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe. I thought they were very good. I can't say that they were heads and tails above any other recipe I've tried. But they were good, I would make them again.

OK, over and out until next month!! Many thanks to Val and Randy from Just Add Nuts for leading this month's effort.


n.o.e said...

Well, you've given me some more great cookies to bookmark! Your Christmas wish for the soldier just choked me up. Thanks for doing this.


Anne said...

Wow- those are some beautiful cookies! I love the peppermint and the spirals. I bet those soldiers will love them! :)

Grace said...

these are great cookies, jacque! just thinking about all the soldiers who missed christmas with their families brings tears to my eyes--bless you for doing what you can to soothe their souls. :)

Madam Chow said...

These look wonderful, and they will be appreciated

Cathy said...

These all look wonderful, Jacque, and I am sure that they will be enjoyed by your soldier. Happy New Year!

Bridgett said...

That is truly a generous and heartfelt gift. I can imagine Dustin will be so pleased.

happytummy said...

oh wow...i love the candy cane snowballs! there is something about the white chocolate-peppermint combo that sounds so delicious. great job--i'm sure the recipient will love them!

Pamela said...

If there's one thing I'm always in the market for, it's another fabulous cookie recipe! And here you've offered up a bunch. They all look great and I'm sure the recipients were quite happy!

Cakelaw said...

great looking batch of cookies - I will bet that Dustin was delighted to receive these. My faves are the sugar spirals.

Snooky doodle said...

wow how many nice and delicious cookies! yummy !

Matt said...

If I was away from home during a war, I would probably be brimming tears with tears of gratitude when I received this gift package. What a thoughtful way to bring a touch of home to a strange place!

Those butter crunch ones sound interesting. I love those recipes that kind of sneak up on you and win you over!

Lori said...

This was very nice of you. And the cookies are beautiful. Lucky soldier.

Bunny said...

They are all beautiful, you are such a good person to do this for our soldiers, thank you for taking the time to do it.

Jaime said...

i love the spirals!