Christmas Cookies!

My mom and I had our very first Christmas cookie bake-a-thon!  After nine different varieties, 550 cookies and 8 hours I would say it was a sweet success!  Hope you can find a recipe to enjoy this holiday season.  Time to spread some sweetness and love!

No Bake Peanut Butter Truffles, Peanut Butter Stars, Molasses, Peppermint, Coconut Date Balls, Pistachio-Cherry, and Almond Crescents. 

Charlee just kicked up a leg and monitored the mess

I caught Trey sneaking a cookie in the garage
The cookie recipes are below:
I start with my classics (always a hit): Aunt Pam’s Molasses Cookies and The Best Ever Peanut Butter Kisses
No Bake Peanut Butter Truffles
Serves 80 (1 truffle each).
| Source: Hy-Vee Seasons Holiday 2012.
All you need:
1/2 c. Hy-Vee butter
2 c. Hy-Vee creamy peanut butter
3 c. finely crushed Hy-Vee toasted rice cereal (about 10 cups uncrushed)*
2 c. Hy-Vee powdered sugar
1 (24 ounce) package almond bark
All you do:
In a large microwave-proof bowl, melt butter on high power for about 60 seconds in microwave. Stir in peanut butter until smooth. Mix in crushed cereal and powdered sugar. Refrigerate for about 20 minutes or until well-chilled.
Line 2 baking sheets with wax paper. Roll cereal mixture into 1-inch balls and place on prepared baking sheets. Chill in refrigerator for 1-1/2 hours or in freezer for 30 minutes.
In a medium microwave-proof bowl, melt half the almond bark according to microwave directions on package. Keeping one baking sheet chilled, use a fork to dip balls from one baking sheet in melted almond bark to coat, shaking off any excess. Place coated balls on cooling rack set over waxed paper. Repeat with remaining almond bark and cereal balls. Let cool until coating is hardened. Carefully remove truffles with spatula. Store in a covered container in the refrigerator.
*For best results, pulse cereal in batches in a food processor fitted with a metal blade.

Dipped Chocolate Peppermint Cookies
Serves 56 (1 cookie each)
| Source: Hy-Vee Seasons Holiday 2012.
All you need:
1/2 c. Hy-Vee butter, softened
1 c. Hy-Vee granulated sugar
1 Hy-Vee large egg
1 tsp peppermint extract
1 1/4 c. Hy-Vee all-purpose flour
1/2 c. Hy-Vee baking cocoa
1/4 tsp Hy-Vee baking soda
1/4 tsp Hy-Vee baking powder
1/4 tsp Hy-Vee salt
2 (11 ounce each) packages white chocolate chips
1/2 c. crushed peppermint candies (about 16)
All you do:
In a large bowl beat butter with electric mixer until creamy. Add sugar; beat until well mixed. Beat in egg and peppermint extract.
In a small bowl stir together flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Gradually beat flour mixture into butter mixture, beating well after each addition. Divide dough in half. On plastic wrap, shape each half into a 7-inch long log. Roll up in plastic wrap and tuck under ends. Freeze at least 45 minutes or refrigerate at least 1-1/2 hours.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Unwrap and cut logs into 1/4-inch slices. Place 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until light brown on bottom. Cool.
Melt white chocolate according to package directions, being very careful not to overheat as this will cause chocolate to be very thick. Dip cookies into melted chocolate, scraping off excess on side of bowl. Place on waxed paper. Immediately sprinkle with crushed peppermint candies. Cool until firm. Store in a covered container at room temperature or in refrigerator.

Pistachio-Cherry Jumbles
Serves 36 (1 cookie each)| Source: Hy-Vee Seasons Holiday 2012.
All you need:
1 1/2 c. Hy-Vee flour
1 (3.4 oz) box Hy-Vee pistachio pudding mix
1/2 c. Hy-Vee sugar
1 tsp Hy-Vee baking powder
1/4 tsp Hy-Vee salt
1/2 c. Hy-Vee unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
2 tbsp Hy-Vee vegetable oil
2 Hy-Vee large eggs
1/2 c. Hy-Vee skim milk
3/4 c. Hy-Vee roasted, salted pistachios, chopped
2/3 c. Hy-Vee dried cherries or cranberries, chopped
All you do:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, stir flour, pudding mix, sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir in butter, oil, eggs and milk until smooth. Stir in pistachios and cherries.
Drop by rounded teaspoons onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until edges are golden.

Merry Christmas!
Until next time…
Look good, feel good, do good
Sara B.