By Janet Keeler
Welcome to our #Cookielicious cookie exchange party! We’ve got oodles of cookie recipes plus 20 baking tips to set you on your way this holiday season. We’ve had a blast in the last few weeks baking cookies and our families have had even more fun tasting them. Just know, they are approved by the most discriminating testers, and that would include the bakers themselves.
Whether you are a sugar cookie lover or want your cookies slathered in icing and sprinkles, we know you’ll fund something to bake here. Join us for a #Cookielicious Twitter chat at 7 p.m. ET Tuesday, Dec. 1. Janet Keeler, Sunday Supper’s editorial director and author of Cookielicious: 150 Fabulous Recipes to Bake & Share, will lead the discussion. Expect lots of great tips and stories about holiday cookies.
- Ice cream scoops are perfect for measuring drop cookies uniformly. Look for a version that measures 1 tablespoon.
- Use parchment paper to line cookie sheets. It facilitates even baking, prevents sticking and makes cleanup a snap.
- Cool cookies on wire racks rather than on the baking sheets or plates. Cookies cooled on solid surfaces get mushy on the bottom, and those left to cool on hot baking sheets lose moisture.
- Invest in an offset spatula, which makes it easier to remove cookies from sheet.
- Have two sets of measuring cups and spoons so that you don’t have to keep washing and drying.
- Use unsalted butter, and if a recipe calls for margarine, make sure it’s in stick form rather than from a tub. Do not use margarine that’s less than 60 percent fat; it has more water in it and can cause excess spreading.
- To keep cookies from spreading too much, use butter that’s just soft enough to cream with sugar, but not so warm that it melts the moment it gets in the oven. Butter is ready when it yields to slight pressure, and depending on the temperature of your house, this could take an hour sitting on the counter.
- Use large eggs in cookie recipes unless another size is specificed.
- Eggs should be at room temperature. Cold eggs can cause melted chocolate to seize or softened butter to firm up unexpectedly, creating tough cookies. To bring eggs to room temperature, set them out on the counter while the oven is preheating.
- If the recipe calls for brown sugar but doesn’t specify dark or light, use light. Dark brown sugar has more molasses in it and that could alter the taste of your cookies.
- Read recipe twice before making your shopping list and preparing. Unless you are an experienced baker, don’t experiment unless you’ve made the recipe once.
- Cool cookie sheets between batches; better yet, buy two or three sheets. Don’t grease the cookie sheet unless the recipe calls for it, or cookies may spread and brown too quickly around the edges.
- Chilling the dough before baking and using parchment paper reduce spread in the oven.
- Lightly oil the cup before measuring syrup, honey and other sticky ingredients and the ingredient will pour out without sticking.
- Space cookies evenly on cookie sheet and usually 2 inches apart. This keeps them from spreading and running into each other.
- Most recipes give a range for the cooking time. Usually, the lower time will yield softer cookies, the longer time, crisper. Still, know your oven.
- To chill dough quickly, divide it into smaller portions and shape into discs.
- In recipes that call for multiple eggs, add one at a time. This allows them to emulsify correctly with the fat.
- Fold in chocolate chips or nuts by hand. This prevents overmixing which can lead to tough cookies.
THE COOKIE RECIPES
- Adaptable Marshmallow Bars by Get the Good Stuff
- Alfajores by Curious Cuisiniere
- Amaretto Apricot Oatmeal Cookies by Magnolia Days
- Amaretto Balls by Palatable Pastime
- Brown Eyed Susans by A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Chewy Gingersnaps by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Chocolate – Pear Biscotti by What Smells So Good?
- Chocolate Crinkle Cookies by The Bitter Side of Sweet
- Coffee Cake Cookies by Pies and Plots
- Cowboy Cookies by Party Food and Entertaining
- Cranberry Orange Rugelach Cookies by My Imperfect Kitchen
- Dark Chocolate Mint Cake Mix Cookies by Fantastical Sharing of Recipes
- Espresso-Ginger Sandwich Cookies by Wholistic Woman
- Espresso Snickerdoodles by Cosmopolitan Cornbread
- Frosted Ginger Spice Cookies by Daily Dish Recipes
- Funfetti Marshmallow Cookies by Brunch with Joy
- Gingerbread Snowflake Cookies by Grumpy’s Honeybunch
- Gluten Free Hazelnut Truffle Cookies by Gluten Free Crumbley
- Gluten Free Nutella Stuffed Linzer Cookies by Fearless Dining
- Green Tea Macarons with Chocolate Ganache by Tara’s Multicultural Table
- Holiday Nutrolls by Delaware Girl Eats
- Kolaczki by Sew You Think You Can Cook
- Lemon Thumbprint Cookies by Cookin’ Mimi
- Macadamia Nut Butter Crisps by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
- Mocha Chocolate Chip Cookies by Monica’s Table
- Mudslide Cookies by Books ‘n Cooks
- Nana’s Russian Teacakes byThe Crumby Cupcake
- Pfeffernüsse by Feeding Big
- Pistachio oatmeal cookies by Caroline’s Cooking
- Pizzelles by The Freshman Cook
- Snowball Cookies by Peanut Butter and Peppers
- Spiked Eggnog Cookies by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Thai-Kissed Cookies by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Tipsy Chocolate Cherry Cookies by Christmas Tree Lane
- Toffee Squares by Ruffles & Truffles
- White Chocolate Dipped Gingersnaps by Sunday Supper
Join us for a #Cookielicious chat at 7 p.m. ET Tuesday, Dec. 1, on Twitter We will be sharing tips for cooking baking along with stories about our favorite family recipes. Follow the #Cookielicious hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great cookies recipes, check out our Cookie Jar Pinterest board.
Janet K. Keeler
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