……And let the Christmas Cookie Countdown begin!
Somewhere between watching the Kardashians and Charlie Brown Christmas the other night I FINALLY started to feel like Christmas was coming! It’s been kinda gross and rainy in Chicago so I haven’t really been able to buy into the whole frosty the snowman and susy snowflake thing.
But! Here’s a couple things that always get me into the Christmas spirit:
1. Our awesome Christmas tree. My dad and I cut it down by ourselves. Actually my dad did. I’m 5’4” and lift 5lb dumbbells so not really your first choice to go sawing a gigantic tree down with. But I’m totally an expert spotter. I’m really good at telling my dad to hurry up… that I’m cold…or halfway through sawing that the tree next to him might be a little bit better… we had a lot of fun though! We do it every year the day after Thanksgiving.
2. My new $10 gingerbread house kit from the grocery store with prepackaged generic decorating candy. It’s amazing how long those things last. In college I accidentally left mine out in my apartment over winter break (almost 4 weeks…) and I swear it looked better than when we left.
3. 93.9 lite fm! Christmas tunes 24/7.
4. Watching Tv in my family room with the fireplace on. Only it freaks me out to light it so that only happens when I can coax someone else to do it for me.
5. Baking Christmas Cookies! Baking lots and lots of Christmas Cookies! So get ready for way too many posts on Christmas cookies!
Which is the perfect transition to this awesome sugar cookie recipe I found in fine cooking. Sugar cookies are so simple but SO good. I like mine soft and chewy too. We make them every year for Christmas.
These cookies are fluffy and soft and rolled in this yummy crunchy sanding sugar. Real easy to make and real easy to eat an entire batch. by yourself.
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened but not meltingly soft
2 tbs. vegetable shortening, preferably trans fat free, softened
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 large egg
1 Tbs. light corn syrup
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 drops almond extract
2 cups plus 2 Tbs. unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
White or colored (coarse) sanding sugar for rolling (optional)
1. Position a rack in the upper third of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment.
2. In a large bowl beat the sugar, butter, shortening, and salt on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg, corn syrup, vanilla, and almond extract and mix on low speed ( just to combine); then beat at medium speed for a total of 1 minute.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and baking soda to combine; then add to the mixer. Mix on low speed for 30 seconds, just to combine. Scrape down the bowl and then mix on medium-low speed for another 30 seconds to mix the dough uniformly.
4. Gently roll the dough into 1-oz. balls (about 1 heaping Tbs. each). Roll the balls in sanding sugar (if using). Arrange at least 21/4 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets.
5. Bake one sheet at a time until the edges are golden and the tops are cracked but not completely set, 13 to 15 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the sheet for at least 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
Nutrition: 120 calories, 5 grams fat