At the first hint of chill in the air, my thoughts turn to Christmas. My mind and heart begin to fill with visions of sugar plums indeed. My weekly menu turns decidedly toward comfort food and I begin rummaging in my brain for homemade Christmas gift ideas for my loved ones. I begin hauling out first the autumn decorations and later the Christmas, decking my halls and every other available surface. I take delight in the season, the magic, wonder and glory of it all. This blog was born from that delight. Here you will find dinner ideas, crafts, decor, stories, memories, and music. Some ideas will be entirely mine, but I will also include anything cute I come across that I think you might like to see, credit given to the creator or source. Please leave me your ideas in the comments and any other feedback you'd like to give.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Sugar Cookies and Cocoa...

...does it get any better than that? In our family, sugar cookie creating has always been a big event in the weeks leading up to Christmas. An evening is set aside to mix, roll, cut, and decorate Christmas cookie masterpieces. The third Christmas after we were married, my husband and I spent an evening doing just that. We had only one small child, to young to want to be involved in the decorating, so we were able to spend lots of time making our cookies spectacular. After we had made and decorated dozens of cookies, we left them on the table to harden while we went to do a little shopping. When we returned we discovered that the dog had eaten or knocked to the floor almost every one of them! We had never had a problem with the dog eating food off tables or counters so we never even saw it coming! Live and learn. Now it's the five kids we have to worry about! That same Christmas a friend brought us the best sugar cookies I had ever had. They were soft, perfectly sweet, and pretty light. I asked her for the recipe and she refused to give it to me! After that I was on a quest to find the perfect sugar cookie recipe. Luckily, several years later I became friends with someone willing to share their recipe. A big shout out to my friend Michelle in NC for giving me this fantastic recipe!

Michelle's Sugar Cookies
(This recipe makes a million. If you're making to share that's great. If you want plenty for your family and a few friends, halve the recipe.)

1 C shortening
1 C butter
4 C sugar
Cream together, add 4 eggs
Sift: 12 C flour
1 tsp salt
12 tsp baking powder
Add: 2 C milk
2 tsp. vanilla

Use lots of flour to roll out 1/8" thick. Bake at 375 degrees for about 5 1/2 minutes. (You can roll them a little thicker and bake a minute longer. They should be set but not browning.)

(Frosts half of the cookie recipe)
3 C powdered sugar
1/3 C butter
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 T milk

Beat until smooth

What good is a fresh batch of sugar cookies without some yummy hot cocoa?

Hot Mint Malt
(From my friend Carrie in NC)
6 York Peppermint Patties
5 C milk
1/2 C chocolate malted milk powder
1 tsp vanilla
whipped cream

Combine everything but the whipped cream in a crockpot. Heat on low for 2 hours. Beat with a rotary beater until frothy. Pour into cups; top with whipped cream and garnish with festive sprinkles or chocolate shavings. Be creative! Makes 6 servings. ( If you can't find the malted milk powder, use any hot chocolate mix.)

This is great to throw together before a caroling party so you can come home to hot minty cocoa.


Unknown said...

Yay! Carrie told em about that recipe and now I have it!! Thanks! Less work for her.:) I love sugar cookies!!! I love to try new recipes in search of "the one" that I will hand down generationbs to come . hehehe
I'll try it! Thanks!

Julie said...

Okay, this is my new favorite sugar cookie recipe! Kate and I made a 1/4 batch tonight which made about 30 cookies. Perfection! I love that you don't have to chill the dough. I am way to impatient to wait for the dough to harden. Thanks for the recipe!

Adrienne said...

I can't believe that person didn't share their recipe! I'm going to make these, yay for no chilling of the dough. Also, crockpot hot chocolate? brilliant.