Recipe of the Month: Red Velvet Macadamia Nut Cookies

Yield: approximately 3 dozen
Ingredients
3/4 cup butter, chilled*
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon hot water
1 and 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 and 1/4 cup Red Velvet cake mix
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup macadamia nuts
Instructions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Beat the butter, brown sugar, and sugar until smooth, and you can no longer see any butter chunks.*
Add the egg and vanilla, and mix until smooth.
Dissolve the baking soda in the hot water. Add the baking soda-water to the mixing bowl. Add the flour and cake mix, and mix just until the dough forms.
Stir the chocolate chips and macadamia nuts in with a spoon or spatula.
Scoop the dough onto a lined baking sheet. For this recipe, I like to stack two tablespoon scoops on top of each other for one cookie, and I keep them at least two inches apart from the other cookies.
Bake for 10-13 minutes until the edges are set. Let cool completely on baking sheet.
Notes
These cookies spread a bit. They’re still chewy and yummy, but fairly thin (as pictured). You can try freezing the dough for about 10 minutes before baking to help prevent spreading. But I’ve found the most effective way to make these cookies THICK and chewy is to substitute half of the butter with shortening, and no chill time needed.
However, I REALLY loved these as thin cookies, which is why I’m posting them like this 🙂

Recipe of the Month: Cherry Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies

Ingredients:
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons maraschino cherry “juice”
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup maraschino cherries, chopped
Granulated sugar, for sprinkling the cookies
30-36 Cherry Cordial Kisses, unwrapped (Milk Chocolate Kisses work just as well)
Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2. In a Large mixing bowl beat butter for 30 seconds on med-high speed. Add powdered sugar and salt beating until combined.
3. Mix in the cherry juice and almond extract.
4. Beat in as much of the flour as you can. This dough gets thick!! Using a wooden spoon combine what is left.
5. Add in the chopped cherries!
6. Roll dough into 1 inch balls. I use a cookie scoop for this. Then roll in sugar. Place on parchment lined cookie sheet and Lightly press them down.
7. Bake for 10 minutes.
8. After baking for 10 minutes. Place a Kiss in the center of each cookie. Pushing very slightly in place.
9. Bake for 4 additional minutes or until bottoms are light brown.
10. Transfer cookies to a cooling rack and let cool.
Note: You can also cook the cookie completely for 14 minutes. Then after they are done quickly insert the kiss in the center. Then transfer to cooling rack.

Recipe of the Month: Hot Chocolate Sandwich Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 c. (16 T.) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 c. brown sugar
  • 1/3 c. granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 T. vanilla extract
  • 2 ½ c. all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 T. cornstarch
  • 1 ½ tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 c. semisweet mini chocolate chips
  • 1/2 c. marshmallow bits
  • About 48-96 semisweet chocolate disks
  • 24 marshmallow stackers

Instructions
1. Line 2 cookie sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.
2. With an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugars until fluffy well-combined, about 3-4 minutes.
3. Beat in eggs one at a times, scraping down the sides as needed.
4. Stir in vanilla until incorporated.
5. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt.
6. Stir in flour mixture until just incorporated.
7. Stir in chocolate chips and marshmallow bits until just combined.
8. Cover. and refrigerate dough at least 3 hours (up to 24 hours). The longer you refrigerate it, the more the dough will hold its shape as it bakes. Ideally, plan for 8-24 hours.
9. Toward the end of the chilling time, preheat oven to 350 F.
10. Using a medium cookie scoop, drop scoops of dough onto prepared cookie sheet.
11. Bake for 7-9 minutes (don’t bake them any longer than 9 minutes).
12. Remove from oven, and let cool for 5-10 minutes on the cookie sheet.
13. Transfer to wire rack to finish cooling.
14. Once the cookies have cooled, place them flat side up on the cookie sheet.
15. Place 2-4 chocolate disks on half of the cookies.
16. Place a marshmallow on the other half of the cookies.
17. Return to the oven for 1- 1 ½ minutes, or until the chocolate begins to melt.
18. Put a marshmallow half with a chocolate half, and enjoy!

Recipe of the Month: Ginger Bread Pizzelle with Eggnog Buttercream Filling

Makes about 4 dozen
For the pizzelle:
2 cups minus 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground ginger
1½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp ground cloves
½ tsp finely ground black pepper
¼ tsp salt
3 large eggs
½ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup molasses
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter, melted
For the filling:
½ cup milk
1 cup fine granulated sugar, divided
½ tsp freshly ground nutmeg
6 large egg yolks
3 ½ sticks (400 g) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 ½ tbsp dark rum
2 tsp pure vanilla extract (or 1 tsp vanilla + 1 tsp natural rum extract)
Make the pizzelle:
Sift the dry ingredients over a bowl. Set aside.
In another bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar to combine, then whisk in the molasses and vanilla extract. Whisk in the melted butter. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the flour mixture. Set the batter aside while preheating a pizzelle iron.
After the iron has been heating for a few minutes, open the cover and spray the top and bottom of the imprints with oil. Close the iron to finish heating.
Drop a tbsp of the batter just a bit further of the center of each imprint, close the cover, and bake the pizzelle until the steam stops coming out from between the plates.
Roll the pizzelles tightly around a wooden spoon’s handle while they are hot and pliable. While rolling the first cookie, keep another one on the grid. It is also easier to use two spoons instead of just one; leave the rolled pizzelle on the spoon’s handle while rolling another cookie. It speeds up the process. Cool pizzelle completely on a cooling rack before filling.
Make the buttercream, fill the cookies:
Combine the milk, half of the sugar, and nutmeg in a heavy saucepan and bring to a simmer.
Right before the cream is ready, in a medium bowl whisk the egg yolks and remaining sugar together until smooth. Gradually, in a very thin stream, add the hot milk, whisking constantly. Pour this mixture back into the saucepan and return to the stove. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon over medium-low heat until the custard thickens and coats the back of the spoon. Immediately strain the custard through the fine sieve into the bowl of the stand mixer. Beat the custard with the wire whip at medium speed until it is light and cool. It must be completely cool.
Replace the wire whip with the paddle attachment. Gradually, 2 tbsp at a time, beat in the softened butter at medium speed. When all of the butter has been incorporated, beat the buttercream vigorously for a minute on high speed to make it as light as possible. Reduce the speed to low and gradually add the rum and extract, then increase the speed and beat the buttercream for another minute until it’s light and creamy again.
Transfer half of the buttercream into a pastry bag fitted with a large plain or star tip. Don’t pack all buttercream in the bag at once. Holding the pizzelle, insert the piping tip as far inside as possible and squeeze some buttercream inside.
Once the cookies are filled, put them in the refrigerator for the buttercream to firm up. Keep the pizzelle in the fridge in an air-tight container. Bring to room temperature about 15 minutes prior serving

Recipe of the Month: Strawberry Cream Cheese Cookie Tarts

PREP TIME: 30 Min
TOTAL TIME: 1 Hr 20 Min
SERVINGS: 32
INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 pouch Betty Crocker® sugar cookie mix
  • Butter and egg called for on cookie pouch
  • 1 container (8-oz.) strawberry cream cheese spread
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 aerosol container (6.4 oz.) Betty Crocker® decorating icing
  • Betty Crocker® candy sprinkles, if desired

DIRECTIONS:
Make cookie dough as directed on package. Roll dough into 32 (1-inch balls); place in greased muffin cups. Press each ball in bottom and up side of muffin cup. Bake at 350°F for 12 to 15 minutes or until edges just begin to brown. Cool 20 minutes. Remove from pan; cool completely.
Mix cream cheese, milk and powdered sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Fill each cookie cup with rounded teaspoonful of filling. Top each cookie with decorating icing and sprinkles. Store in refrigerator.

Recipe of the Month: Key Lime Pie Cookie Cups

Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 30 mins
Total time: 50 mins
Key Lime Pie Cookie Cups start with a mini lime sugar cookie crust that is
then filled with deliciously sweet and tart key lime pie filling. Top that off with
whipped cream and you have a winner!
Author: Aubrey Cota
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 24
Ingredients
Cookie Cups

  • ½ the dough for Lime Sugar Cookies*

Key Lime Pie Filling

  • 3 egg yolks
  • ½ cup key lime juice**
  • 1-14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • whipped cream for garnish
  • lime slices, halved for garnish

Instructions
Cookie Cups

  1. preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
  2. spray a mini muffin tin with cooking spray
  3. place a teaspoon ball of cookie dough into each muffin cup
  4. place in oven and bake for 10-13 minutes until just starting to brown
  5. remove from the oven and use the handle of a wooden spoon to gently press down the center of the
    cookies to form a cup
  6. allow to cool in the muffin cups for 5 to 10 minutes then remove to a cooling rack

Key Lime Pie Filling

  1. whisk the egg yolks, lime juice, sweetened condensed milk and vanilla over medium to low heat for 10-15 minutes until completely warmed
  2. remove from heat and allow to completely cool
  3. pour into a pastry bag and fill each cookie cup to the top
  4. place in the refrigerator until completely cooled and ready to serve
  5. top each off with a dollop of whipped cream and a half a lime slice
  6. enjoy!

Notes
* I made 24 cookie cups then I just baked off the rest of the dough as regular cookies following the original recipe. They always go fast!
** In a pinch I’ve used lime juice and it was fine.
Recipe by Real Housemoms at http://realhousemoms.com/keylimepiecookiecups/

Recipe of the Month: Glitter Ball Cookies

Servings: Makes About 2 Dozen

Ingredients

FILLING

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 8 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature

COOKIES

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter,softened
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • Sanding sugar, in assorted colors

Directions

FILLING
Place all ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; beat until well combined.
COOKIES

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat butter, confectioners’ sugar, and salt with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes, scraping down side of bowl as necessary. beat in vanilla. Reduce speed to low; add flour, and mix just until combined. Shape into 3/4-inch balls (chill dough if too sticky). Place sanding sugar in shallow bowls. Roll each ball in sanding sugar, and place on parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart.
  2. Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until edges are lightly golden, 15 to 18 minutes. Let cookies cool completely on a wire rack. Spread 2 cookies with just enough filling to allow them to stick together.

Recipe of the Month: Milk-and-Cookie Shots

Milk and Cookie ShotsIngredients

For the cookies:
1 cup shortening
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light-brown sugar
1 large egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup mini chocolate chips
For the cookie shots:
1 cup dark-chocolate candy melts
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease the molds of a popover pan.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the shortening and brown and granulated sugars. Add the egg yolk and vanilla extract, and mix until completely incorporated. Gradually add the flour and salt, and mix until completely incorporated. Add the mini chocolate chips, and mix together until evenly distributed. The dough should be a little crumbly at this point.
  3. Form the cookie shots inside the molds, making the walls of the cookie shot about 1/4 inch thick. Chill for 20 to 30 minutes before baking.
  4. Bake for about 20 minutes or until the cookies just start to brown. Remove from the oven, and let cool completely.
  5. Melt chocolate candy melts, and then pour the melted chocolate into the well of each cookie. Let it sit for a minute, and then pour the excess chocolate back into the pan. Chill cookie shots until the chocolate has set.
  6. Mix together milk and vanilla extract, and serve inside each cookie shot.