Holiday Cookies 2013

Though I wasn’t sure if I could fit this in, I’m so glad that I did…. had some friends over for some decorating!

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cookies baked, sprinkles dispersed, frosting tinted…


all these must be decorated

I had a few friends over to decorate holiday cookies with me… here’s what some of them looked like! As always, I love seeing the creativity, humor and beauty. 🙂










Somebody’s getting a Tiffany Blue Box for Christmas!







M E R R Y   C H R I S T M A S !!

Holiday Cookie Exchange 2013

I was invited and participated in my first holiday cookie exchange!


Almost all the cookies on the table ready for exchange…


How it works:

1. Bake 6-8 dozen holiday cookies, and package them up in 6 or 12 – depending on what the cookie is, how many you bring, what fits best etc.

2. All invited parties gather at one location on the designated cookie exchange night

3. All extras, burnt cookies, broken pieces etc. are set out for sampling

4. All ready-to-exchange-cookie packages are displayed for later exchange

5. After some visiting, drinking, snacking and sampling….

6. Each person introduces the cookies that he or she brought… and the exchange commences!

At the end of the evening, you leave with as many cookies as you arrived with, but so many more, beautiful and tasty varieties to enjoy. Happy Holidays!!!


I made these two:

Potato chip cookies

I’ve made these before and have been very happy with them. Of course, right!?–they have potato chips in and on top of them!!! 😉


crushed potato chips for the dough, and crushed potato chip and flaked sea salt topping ready to go for my two batches…


golden brown and you can see the toasted pecans


Chocolate Rugelach

This was a new recipe for me, but I was happy with how they turned out. The dough was nice and flaky, and the Ghiradelli chocolate on the inside was of course quite nice as well. 🙂


chilled dough, ready to roll. Each dough quarter makes 12 rolls according to the recipe. I ended up making 8 each so that they were slightly larger…


dessert pizza?


cinnamon sugar and bittersweet chocolate chunks


up close


A Woodland Baby Shower

Boy, December sure has been a busy month!! Before December ends, I want to try and catch up on a few posts that I haven’t had time to get to because… well, partly because I have been baking! 😉


Acorn cookies


Toadstool mushroom cupcakes

A college friend of mine is having a baby boy soon, so I helped bake a couple of treats for her woodland themed baby shower in early December. Among the rest of the delicious spread complete with baked stuffed mushrooms, orzo pasta salad, green salad, spiced nuts, cheese, crackers and fig spread, and an outstanding (and delicious I must say!) chocolate cake baked and decorated to look like a tree stub by another friend, were these toadstool mushroom cupcakes… 


trays full of yellow cupcakes and tinted vanilla frosting to look like toadstools… it took a little time to get just the right orangey-red. And placing each spot took some effort too!


Home habitat…

Before packing these up for the party, I used a few items that I had to create a quick home habitat to snap a few shots of these little ‘shrooms.




Toadstool mushroom cupcakes in their “true habitat” for the party! The habitat was pretty much set when I arrived and made the perfect backdrop for these little red mushrooms. Thanks to Sheena for this picture!

And for the acorn cookies, I baked up a batch of my Grandma’s sugar cookies and dipped them in semi-sweet chocolate for the little cap. Mmmmm! I contemplated sprinkles on the chocolate part, but decided that I liked the simplicity as they were…


Dancing on the cookie sheet


acorn swirl… getting packed and ready to go


One acorn…


Two acorns!

‘Tis the season for pumpkin muffins!

I made these pumpkin muffins to take to Thanksgiving dinner this year. Even though the recipe is for a gluten, egg and dairy free treat, I altered it slightly for my use….

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Only got a chance to snap this quick pic!

For the first ingredient, I used this “gluten-free flour mix” which I found at a local store. To avoid cane sugar sensitivities, I replaced both the brown sugar and white sugar with coconut sugar like this, and since the dairy allergies present were not extreme, I went ahead and used regular dairy butter. I did need to avoid using cinnamon though, so replaced the 1-1/2 tsp. that the recipe calls for with 1 tsp. Allspice and 1/2 tsp. cardamom.

They didn’t turn out looking like the picture in the recipe, but taste-wise, I think they turned out pretty well.