Thursday, December 20, 2012

Scattered Thoughts and Christmas Craziness

I've been busy.  Really busy.  My house is a disaster, and now that I think I'm done with holiday crafts and baking it's time to get caught up on housework…but before I do that, I have to share with you what I've been up to!

First, the treats- this month, our Allrecipes Allstars partners were Nestle and Ladies Home Journal.  We were asked to participate by baking for the World's Biggest Cookie Swap.  The World's Biggest Cookie Swap is pretty neat- two cool reasons to enter the World's Biggest Cookie Swap on Pinterest. 1) For every board created, $1 goes to Cookies for Kids Cancer.  2) You and a friend might win an all expense paid trip to NYC to have lunch with Ina Garten! Get started here: http://bit.ly/AllrecipesWBCS

The most interesting cookies I made (by far) were the Sweet and Salty Toll House cookies- they had broken pretzels and crushed potato chips in them!  They were even better the second day!

My husband's favorite (and he's already begging me to make them again) were the Jumbo Dark Chocolate cookies.  I accidentally halved the cocoa powder and they were still outstanding!  

My 19 month-old little man's hands down favorite were the White Orange Chip cookies (and he's not usually a cookie person!)  These were also even better the second day after the flavors had a chance to meld.

I made two other treats for the cookie swap, Butterscotch Haystacks and Dark Chocolate Cherry Fudge.  The Butterscotch Haystacks had great flavor, but the addition of mini marshmallows gave them a weird mouth feel.  

The Dark Chocolate Cherry Fudge was OUTSTANDING.  My husband gobbled it up, and he normally won't touch fudge.  I'll definitely be making it again!

Also, at the request of my daughter's teacher, I baked gingerbread men for her class to decorate.  I was a little nervous, because gingerbread isn't exactly a favorite of 6 year-olds, but I was lucky enough to find this great recipe!  It's not a normal gingerbread recipe, as the molasses is replaced by butterscotch pudding mix, but it went over VERY well with the kids!

Last (but certainly not least) I've gone crazy crafting.  The past couple of years I've given homemade Cinnamon Roll Popcorn adapted from a recipe on Allrecipes.com, and it's wildly popular with it's recipients.  This year I packaged it in containers that I decorated like snowmen (wish I could take credit for the idea, but I found it in FamilyFun magazine.  I used every cylindrical container I could get my hands on- formula containers I saved from the first year of my son's life, oatmeal containers, breadcrumb containers…lol the list goes on.  I gave the smaller ones to my daughter's bus driver and the mailman, and worked up to the biggest ones for family. Time consuming, but definitely worth it in the end!  (and forgive the less-than-stellar picture, it's the only one I have...)

To get any of the recipes I mention simply click on the image!

White Chip Orange Cookies
From Allrecipes.com

2 1/4 C all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 C butter or margarine, softened
1/2 C granulated sugar
1/2 C packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
2 tsp grated orange peel
2 C NESTLE® TOLL HOUSE® Premier White Morsels

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Combine flour, baking soda and salt in a small bowl.   Beat butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar in large bowl until creamy.  Beat in egg and orange peel.  Gradually beat in flour mixture.  Stir in morsels.  Drop by rounded tablespoons on greased baking sheets.

3. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until edges are light brown.  Cool on baking sheets for 2 minute; remove to wire racks to cool completely.
I am an Allrecipes Allstar Brand Ambassador(a voluntary position) and I’m not compensated for my work with Allrecipes.com. Products received from advertisers are only used for experienced-based reviews on my blog. The reviews, content and opinions expressed in this blog are solely my own.


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