Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Twas the night before Christmas Eve...

For some reason, the holiday spirit hit me in a big way yesterday. I spent the evening hours baking and making eggnog!

And, since I know how much everyone appreciates really easy cookie recipes, here you go:

Lemon (or Strawberry) Bites:

1 box of cake mix (the lemon works best)
1 container of Cool Whip or other whipped dairy topping
1 egg
powdered sugar

Preheat your oven to 350. Mix the cake mix, Cool Whip, and egg in a large bowl. The batter will be very sticky! Using a spoon (or your hands, if you prefer), drop balls of batter into the powdered sugar and roll them around until they're covered. Place on a greased baking sheet about 1.5 - 2 inches apart, and bake for 10 - 12 minutes. The strawberry ones don't take as long to bake, for some reason, so keep an eye on them. They should be fluffy and brownish on the bottom. Let them cool on a baking rack, and enjoy!

Sesame-Ginger/Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies:

These cookies start out as the same batter!

1 egg + 1 (extra) yolk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
2 sticks of butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

In a small bowl, mix the egg + yolk, vanilla, and salt. Mix the butter and sugar in a food processor until smooth. Add the egg mixture, and pulse or mix on low speed until well blended. Add the flour and continue to pulse/mix until smooth. Divide the dough in half and place into two separate bowls.

For the Sesame-Ginger: Mix in 1/2 tsp. ground ginger and 3 Tbs. minced crystallized ginger. Form into a 9 inch long log, then roll in 1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds. Wrap the log in plastic wrap and place in freezer for 30 minutes.

For the Chocolate Hazelnut: Mix in 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips. Form into a 9 inch long log, then roll in 1/2 cup toasted hazelnuts, chopped. Wrap the log in plastic wrap and place in freezer for 30 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 375. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Slice dough 1/4 inch thick, and place slices on the cookie sheets about 1/2 inches apart. Bake 12 - 14 minutes, or until golden brown. For even baking: about halfway through, rotate cookie sheets from top to bottom and from facing the front of the oven to facing the back. Cool on a baking rack, and enjoy!

My mom gave me this recipe; she says you can use other mix-ins and coatings. If anyone experiments, please leave me a comment so I can hear what combination you used. The Sesame-Ginger, as strange as it may sound, is actually really good!

As for the eggnog, I got that recipe from Susie Bright's Journal. She's currently guest-blogging on BoingBoing, one of my favorite blogs, but I found the recipe through Modern Cottage, which has tons of great recipes and crafts.

Happy Christmas, everyone! I have a few book reviews I'll be posting later, then I'm off to my parents' for traditional family stuff. Happy baking!


Nymeth said...

Those sound delicious! Merry Christmas, Jessi :)

jessi said...

Thanks, Nymeth! Merry Christmas to you, too! :)

Florinda said...

Merry Christmas - enjoy all those treats :-)!

Anonymous said...

YUMM! will tell u if i end up trying i out :)