It is the most wonderful time of the year to dust off your apron and your baking skills. You don’t need to be a contestant on the Great British Bake Off to be able to impress your friends and family with a few delicious holiday treats.
If you haven’t spent a lot of time in the kitchen before, don’t fear. There are a few basic tricks that can help you look like a pro with even the most complex recipes. Put on some holiday music and keep these simple strategies in mind before you start looking at recipes:
- Always use soft butter, not melted butter. Take the butter out of the fridge 30 minutes before you are going to start baking to give it a chance to cool down. Melting it in the microwave can mess up the consistency of your batter.
- Follow the instructions in your recipes to make sure you blend items in order. Giving butter, sugar and eggs the chance to blend before adding flour is what helps cookies taste like cookies. Be patient!
- If you haven’t baked a lot before, then set your timer for less than the designated amount of time by 2-3 minutes and keep an eye on your baked goods at the end to make sure they don’t burn. Every baker will tell you that you need to get to know your oven.
Here are some of the easiest holiday recipes that will impress everyone at your cookie swap:
Peanut Butter Blossom Cookies
- 1 Stick Butter (soft)
- ½ Cup White Granulated Sugar
- ½ Cup Brown Sugar
- 1 Egg
- 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1 ¾ Cup Flour
- 1 Tsp Baking Soda
- ½ Tsp Salt
- ½ Cup Peanut Butter (Creamy Only!)
- 1 Tbsp Milk
- 1 bag Hershey Kisses
- Blend the butter and white sugar. Add the egg and blend completely. Add brown sugar.
- Add peanut butter.
- Add milk and vanilla.
- Add flour, baking soda, and salt.
- Blend Completely
- Spoon dough in 1 inch rounds onto greased cookie sheet, placing cookies 2 inches apart. Bake at 375 for 6-8 minutes.
- As soon as you remove the cookies from the oven place a Hershey kiss in the center of each cookie.
Double Chocolate Fudge Brownies
- 3 Eggs
- ½ Cup Vegetable Oil
- 2 Tablespoons Water
- 2/3 Cup Cocoa
- 1 ¾ Cup granulated sugar
- ¾ tsp salt
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 1 Cup flour
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- ½ cup hot fudge sauce
- Blend eggs in electric mixer. Add sugar. Add oil.
- Add salt, baking powder, and flour.
- Add cocoa and water (half cocoa, 1 Tbsp water, other half cocoa, 1 Tbsp water)
- Add fudge and chips.
- Top with sprinkles for a bit of extra holiday spirit!
- Bake in glass pan ( 8 x 11 or 9 x 9) at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until a toothpick can be removed mostly clean (fudge will remain fudgy!).