Sharing More Cookies

cookies smI really am a cookie monster. From a food point of view, I consider myself to be much more of a savory person than a sweet one, but where cookies are concerned I become a little scary. This is why I only make them this time of year for the most part, because I plan to share them…you know, (ahem!) give them away as presents.

Brilliant! If only I could sing that well.

And since I only do this once a year, and as if all those cookies and goodies I mentioned in my last post Holiday Roundup weren’t enough, I just had to make a few more goodies this week.

crinkles2First off were these Chocolate Espresso Crinkle Cookies. I knew I had to try them the moment I saw Eva’s original recipe, and then Sawsan’s adaptation of Eva’s recipe that added some warm spices. I ended up making Sawsan’s version this time because I already had my biscotti, which have chocolate chips in them, and also because I was so curious about the addition of cardamom to the chocolate.

crinkles1Result: Amazing! The texture of these cookies isn’t to be missed…very much like a brownie. And the taste, well, let’s just say they didn’t last long enough to be given to very many folks! I’ll make these again. In fact, I’ll be adding them to my cookie line-up, so do check out the recipes on both these blogs for a truly chocolatey wonder of a good cookie.

Now on to a recipe from my family that I’d like to share with you today. This is an old fashioned recipe for Drop Sugar Cookies that my mom and her mother (Mamaw) made for years, and they almost always make an appearance around Christmas time.

flatten2flatten1Dropped onto the cookie sheet by the spoonful and then flattened with a glass, these cookies are thin with just the right amount of crisp. They have a lovely, buttery and light texture, and are just perfect for a snack with tea, cocoa, or alongside eggnog. You absolutely must let them brown around the edges a bit to caramelize the sugars, or they just won’t taste as good. And while I normally do not use shortening in baking if I can help it, these really must have the shortening in order to obtain the correct light texture. I know this for a fact, because I’ve tried substituting all butter and ended up with a flattened mess, ruining a lot of good ingredients and ending my efforts with an epic fail. Do not try that at home!

cookies3I seem to remember decorating these with my mom as a child, though I don’t recall if my grandmother ever decorated her sugar cookies. If you’re not in a decorating mood or it’s the wrong time of year, these do have a lovely coating of granulated sugar on them after all, so they can certainly stand alone. I like to use a few sprinkles for fun and sparkle—just to make them pop up and say “Happy Holidays!”

Drop Sugar Cookies
Makes about 5 1/2 dozen

Have all ingredients at room temperature:

2 1/2 cups sifted all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup vegetable shortening, such as Crisco
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
2 Tablespoons milk
Additional granulated sugar for dipping

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Sift the flour, soda and salt together into a small bowl. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, shortening, egg, sugar and vanilla until the mixture is light and fluffy. Stir in the dry ingredients until the mixture is smooth. Blend in the milk. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto an ungreased cookie sheet (I use a slipat). Flatten each teaspoon of dough with the bottom of a glass that has been dipped into the granulated sugar. (Can be decorated with sprinkles at this point if desired.) Bake for about 6-10 minutes, watching closely, until the edges are browned. These will keep for about 1 week stored in an airtight container.

Note: I use cane sugar, which is unbleached, so my cookies are a bit darker than the original. If you desire a more snowy-like appearance, use white granulated sugar in the cookie and for dipping the glass and pressing the cookies flat.

cookies2

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36 thoughts on “Sharing More Cookies

  1. Thank you so much for the shout out Betsey, I was curious about cardamom and chocolate too but I haven’t had a chance to try it yet. Your cookies look beautiful.
    I love how thin and delicate this cookie recipe is and I particularly love that they are a family recipe, thank you so much for sharing it with us, very generous. My baking is getting out of control now, but I just might have to sneak these in anyway! Bad Betsy! 😉

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    • Ah, Eva, you’re so kind. I felt the same way about you “bad Eva” and “bad Sawsan” because I’d always wanted to make a chocolate crinkle cookie and never had. I love the spices. Next time I may try just cinnamon and a touch of orange zest…and maybe sneak in those chocolate chips, too! Let me know what you think about the sugar cookies. I have several family recipes I intend to share as time goes on…just getting to them is the problem! 😉

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      • hehehe Bad indeed! I was planning on trying these again with the chocolate chips and maybe replacing some of the flour with ground hazelnuts. I love the idea of the orange zest or maybe some candied orange peel! Oh and I was thinking maybe trying to roll them in cinnamon sugar and see how that turns out.
        If only there were more hours in the day!
        Thank you kindly for the shout out Betsy. I deeply appreciate it

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        • Sawsan, you are most welcome for the shout-out. You and Eva have so many wonderful recipes I’d love to try. I did try your lavender dressing and salad back in the summer, and never got to mention it…but it was fabulous, BTW! Candied orange peel and cinnamon sugar sounds grand with these cookies. 🙂

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  2. The Chocolate Espresso Crinkle Cookies must be good, being recommended by not 1 but 3 of my favorite bloggers. And those Drop Sugar Cookies look like the ones Mom baked each Christmas. That recommendation is implied. All facts considered, I had better bake some of these. I’d be a fool not to. 🙂

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    • Hi John! The Chocolate Espresso Crinkle Cookies are just divine! Much more chocolatey than the recipe implies without the chips in them…which I like! I’d be curious to compare notes on your Mom’s drop sugar cookie recipe and see how similar they are. Wouldn’t it be funny if they were the same recipe? So yes, I think you need to bake some soon! 🙂 Happy Holidays to you!

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    • Hi Karen, and thank you for the great compliments! So glad you like the header, and thank you for noticing it. I hadn’t planned to have that spider up past Halloween, but never got around to changing it and was determined to have a winter one up by the solstice. Happy Holidays to you! 🙂

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  3. I love old family recipes and am so glad you shared this. My mom’s recipes always had shortening in them too! It was the fat of choice then for sure! Love how thin and crisp these are. Happy holidays!

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  4. I noticed your new wintery header, too. Looks good! Some cookies just come out better with shortening, I’ve noticed, in spite of our prejudice against it. Happy Holidays!

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    • Hi Judy, and thank you so much! It’s true, sometimes nothing will do but shortening. It’s not so bad in moderation, I guess. 😉 Now the worst one is a family recipe that I have for candy dipped in chocolate that has paraffin in it. I can’t bring myself to use the wax…no way. Happy Holidays to you and your family, too!

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    • Hey Jed, thanks! And very happy holidays to you and yours, too, and all the best for 2013. 🙂 I know you’re a Cookie Monster, too, and it seems like maybe I saw this clip on your site for Monday Humor once or for cookies…didn’t have time to research that…but it was just too appropriate to this post to not repeat it. And of course what am I doing right now in between commenting? Baking MORE COOKIES!

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    • These are truly wonderful cookies…I love Sawsan’s version with the spices and will probably make them next with cinnamon and orange. I think I may need a cookie sabbatical for a month in the new year after eating all these goodies! 😉

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  5. Happy holidays to you Betsy! I am hoping that Santa is very good to you and especially after you leave these delightful cookies out for him and his reindeer this week. Both cookies look delicious but would love to give Sawson/Eva’s cookies a try as love the spices and the chocolate combined. They look so chewy and delicious. Take care, BAM

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  6. Those drop cookies look comforting and delicious Betsy. They definitely shout out Merry Christmas!I am a Cookie Monster too and it is all rather dangerous, isn’t it? Wishing you a wonderful Christmas Betsy. I know that it has been quite a year for you, so I hope that you have a well-deserved break!

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    • Hi Barb, and thank you! We had a lovely Christmas out of town with family and friends and just returned. We’re looking forward to ringing out this old year and having a happy new one, and hopefully a healthy one, too. My poor husband, especially. I hope you, your ponytails and your family had a wonderful Christmas and that you have a fantastic New Year!

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