Christmas Cookies 2012!

Cookie Request List:

Chewy Gingerbread Cookies
The orange in these cookies and the chewiness makes these unbelievable! They spread lots on the pan!

Lemon Ricotta Cookies with lemon glaze
My mom said the cakiness of these reminded her of the black and white cookies from the bakery. This batter looks too thin when going on the pan but puffs up into these little sweet spots. I would make them smaller next time. Love the lemon in these!

Classic Spritz
The key to these is NOT to over cook them. They are so little the timing on these needs to be closely watched.

Almond Crescents

Rum Balls My personal favorite!

Pecan Tarts

Snickerdoodles Katie swears by this recipe!

Also making vanilla caramels with seasalt and molasses caramels thanks to Michelle!
We learned this year that the molasses caramels need to boil much more than a soft ball, almost to a hard crack stage. We doubled each recipe to fill 1 jelly roll pan!


Dangerous Almond Cream & Pear Puff

This recipe was adapted from Puff-Pastry-Tart-Filled-with-Almond-Cream-at Epicurious with a few important changes. Super easy. Super delicious. Dangerously good.

5oz (half a can) pure almond paste
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 large egg
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 (17 1/4-oz) package frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed about 40 min 
2 T egg white
3 ripe pears, sliced 1/4 in thick slices

Preheat oven to 450°F.
Purée almond paste, granulated sugar, butter, and a pinch of salt in a food processor until combined.
Add 1 egg, vanilla, and almond extract and purée until consistent.
Butter parchment paper and place on cookie sheet. Top with 1 puff pastry.
Use rolling pin to stretch out dough slightly to approximately 9x11in.
Roll out 2nd puff pastry piece to the same size.
Brush a border on the edges of both puff pieces with egg white to help them stick together.
Mound almond cream in center, spread evenly.
Place a layer of pear slices evenly spread across the puff.
Cover with 2nd puff piece and press the egged edges together lightly.
Make several small slits all the way through pastry, at about 3-inch intervals, to create steam vents. 

Bake in lower third of oven until puffed and golden brown, 13 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool slightly, 5 to 10 minutes. Serve warm or cold.