Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Surprise snowball cookies

Always, at the last quarter of the year, I envision myself Tres Grand Baker (sounds so good in French), you know, where I make/share/pack/sell boxes of treats, aaand ease over here to type a terrific amount of words and numerous yet-to-see-light blueprints. I now realize that lofty dreaming needs to be accompanied with several shots of mega energy drinks to get any moxie past 1st week of December, or any day, really. Of course, there's also the reality that time speeds by unforgivingly faster, once you pass quite a few decades in life, and will not stand still to figure in your tardy ambitious calling. Priceless life lesson and a recipe you will not regret...aren't you glad you came over?

Currently, I believe surprise snowballs are calling out to you. The enviable white cover on them is reminiscent of a weather that Christmas should ideally come in. So, if you, like myself, do not live within snowglobe-ish surroundings, you most desperately need a cookie that gets you there. 

As I went through and ate made several of these, I knew you would benefit from the knowledge I share; to mix them in your own mixers, bake them in your ovens, eat them with your own hands in your own mouths. For the love of cookie dough and how dynamically easy jam inside it can be, is really the surprise, and sure prospect for any cookiemaking roster.

So...while going through the instructions on filling and forming the "balls", I realize that once the jam is placed, rolling two saucers into a sphere is not an easy task. Instead of a ball, they structure out more like a disc, or a spaceship. I don't know about you, but surprise spacediscs do not, in any way, convey yuletide. Yet, I suppose, if you were to work on a few dozen batches of these, like I should be, you might make that one of your confection manufacturing goals.

Finally, as I end our conversation for today, I do hope you...

make some cookies
make some memories
make your holiday truly holy days.

Have a holly jolly Christmas!
Simple, yet sublime... to wow the socks off holiday guests/critics/people under your own roof.

(Recipe adapted from Cooking Classy...raspberry almond snowballs)
  • ¾ cup slivered almonds (without skin)
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup salted butter
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ half cups powdered sugar
  • 6-8 tbsp strawberry jam

  • Place almonds into the workbowl of a food processor and process until semi-ground and almost chunky bits. 
  • Place in the same bowl, flour and grind with the semi-ground almonds until mixture becomes a finer texture( small nut bits are okay). Pour mixture aside into a separate bowl.
  • Into the now empty food processor bowl, add butter and ½ cup powdered sugar until mixture becomes creamy and combined.
  • Add vanilla and mix.
  • Pour into this, the nut-flour mixture and pulse process until just combined.
  • Scoop a  half tablespoon sized dough and form into a ball using hands.  
  • Make a fairly deep indention (large enough to fit the jam) with your finger or thumb. Add ½ tsp of the jam. 
  • Scoop and shape another ½ tablespoon of cookie dough. Make an indentation in that piece then gently place that indented dough ball over the jam filled dough ball, pressing and sealing with your fingers at the seams, to make one round ball (1 jam filled thumbprint ball + 1unfilled thumbprint ball= one cookie ball). 
  • Transfer to a cookie sheet or plate. Repeat with remaining dough, leaving one inch space between the cookies.
  • Set the balls in the fridge to firm, for about 30 minutes, upto 2 hours.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F , last 20 minutes of chilling. 
  • Take dough balls out of refrigerator.
  • Bake  cookie balls (leaving extra in the fridge to chill, till ready to bake), 10-14 minutes, they will feel dry to the touch, but still remain soft. Do not overbake as jam will seep out.
  • Let cool on baking sheet for 2-3 minutes, then place still warm cookies in a bowl filled with the remaining powdered sugar and gently roll before placing them on racks to cool completely.
  • Store in airtight container or freeze. These store well, if you really can keep them that long.
  • A fresh coating of sugar might be needed, when serving or packaging.

December ~
2016: Grinch cake
2012: Lollipops
"I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago." Psalms 77:11

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Thanksgiving cake pops

How could I let you go, without throwing out some Thanksgiving cheer? Especially after we've known each other for so long. Moreover, I feel the need to fire your creativity, perhaps inspire/motivate while I desperately  show off some of my  handiwork. display some things that have kept me busy for the past few weeks.

Don't worry. We won't have a lengthy conversation on positioning cake on a stick,which is precisely what the above group of colorful confections are- cake, crumbled, mixed with frosting and strategically stuck to a paper stick. If you consider doing this, it may not be too hard, provided you've prepped for much of what's to happen in your kitchen tomorrow, perhaps even primed the huge bird that is mere balanced on the edge of your refrigerator shelf(is this just me?).

My original cake pop post was in 2012, with maybe a couple of follow up articles on how to shape and mold, like the Snoopy pops below.

The Fall-ish theme comes together with no more than 4 colors of Wilton candy melts. Mini leaves, acorns, and even the turkey are made from an overflow of homemade marshmallow fondant. I am thankful for this abundance, but more so my preschool-like desire to still play with playdo.

So, then, with that, I shall take leave.

May your cranberry sauce be perfect, your bird basted and brown and may you sense the spirit of gratitude that uplifts your soul and brings a long lasting smile to your face. 

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! 

Enjoy and happy eats🦃🥧

A few themes and images to match tastes and birthday kid wishes.
"When you feel like you don't fit in, may you walk in faith because you have a place at the Table of Grace. When you feel like you're just not enough, may you remember that His Enough is more than enough for you. When you trip up and fall short, remember that He stoops down to make you great. And when you don't feel victorious, remember that you're already seated with Christ because He won the victory for you. Have a great day! You're firmly seated with Christ." Susie Larson
"You hide them in the secret place of Your presence from the conspiracies of man; You keep them secretly in a shelter from the strife of tongues." Psalm 31:20