Tag Archives: Cookie

Cherry, Chocolate & Pistachio Cookies

Cherry Chocolate and Pistachio Cookies

It’s that time of year again and it’s time to make cookies! This year I’m attending a friend’s cookie swap party. And this friend is a professionally trained baker. No pressure or anything!

I came across this cookie recipe in Self magazine’s December issue. The photography drew me in (my cookies in no way look like the magazine photos!) and then I read the recipe and I was sold.  It’s the perfect blend of salty and sweet. And it’s very easy to make—perfect for a cookie swap!

Cherry, Chocolate & Pistachio Cookies

Adapted from Self magazine, December 2013

Yields 40 cookies

Ingredients

  •  2-1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ olive oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 oz dark chocolate (60-70% cacao), chopped
  • ¼ cup dried cherries
  • ½ cup pistachios, shelled and finely chopped

Directions

In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt. Separately, using a standing mixer, combine butter, sugar and olive oil until well blended. Add eggs and vanilla extract. Slowly add flour mixture in small batches. Stir in chocolate and cherries.

 

Divide dough in half and roll into two logs, about 2” by 8” long. Wrap in plastic wrap and freeze for 45 minutes.

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Spread chopped pistachios on a cutting board and roll the chilled cookie dough. If the nuts do not stick to the dough, press the nuts into the dough.  Cut each log into 20 cookies and spread evenly the cookies sheets. If there is any left over chopped nuts, sprinkle them on the cookies. Gently press the cookies so they are flat and round. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and cool.

If you are making these cookies as gifts, I typed out the name of the cookies and printed them on 65# card stock. If you would like to print them out, you can download my PDF here. Then, using a 1.5″ circle punch, I punched out the tags and used a hole punch at the top. I ran out of ribbon so I used some yarn I had on hand for a rustic touch.

Once you and your friends taste these cookies, you will die and go to heaven. Happy Holidays!

Posted in Baking | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Sports Ball-Themed Cookies (with Fondant!)

Last month, I proudly made a foray into fondant!  My in-laws hosted Father’s Day and since my parents were coming, I thought it would be fun to make cookies for the dads.

I was inspired by the shirt-and-tie cookies from Munchkin Munchies (so cute!), but I then found these sports ball-themed cookie cutters on Amazon. Learned a lot, but what a production! In this case, I don’t feel that the effort matched the result, but it was a learning process all the same. Better yet – I now don’t feel intimidated by some of the ultra-fancy cookies I pinned on Pinterest over the last couple months. OK, I lied – I’m totally still a little intimidated, but it wasn’t as hard as I thought.

A couple of things I learned…

Make sure to get a good cookie recipe  

I know this is obvious, but I’m a novice baker and I don’t have any tried-and-true sugar cookie recipes, so I used the recipe that came with the cookie cutters. Awful choice. The cookies were way too bland. Next time, I’ll find a better-tasting cookie recipe. On the upside, they turned out solid and not soft or wimpy.

Have a plan

The cookie cutter set came with so many options and it could have become an expensive project. Instead, I narrowed down the cookie shapes to sports balls that were white (golf, volleyball, baseball), brown (football) or black (billiard ball). I bought a big box of ready-to-use rolled, white fondant and a small-assorted box that included black and brown fondant.

Rolling fondant is an arm toner

Holy cow! My arms were sore the next day! I really had to put everything into the rolling-pin to roll out the fondant. Talk about elbow grease…And even then, I didn’t roll it thin enough. In order to avoid having fondant overpower the cookie’s taste, you need to roll it to a 1/8” thickness or less. Maybe using a regular rolling-pin would have helped. I used a little weenie wooden roller I bought at AC Moore in the baking aisle.

Sports Ball Cookies

I’ll skip past the recipe for the sugar cookies. Just be sure to use a recipe that yields a sturdy cookie so that it won’t break or fall apart when you lay the fondant on top. You can make the cookies the night before so they are cool. Also, you’ll need buttercream to seal the fondant to the cookie. I used Pillsbury buttercream frosting, but I think next time I’d make it from scratch.

Directions

After cookies have cooled, using a rolling-pin, roll out fondant on a clean surface or cutting board. Roll it out so that the thickness is between 1/16” and 1/8”.

Place the plastic impression on top of the fondant. Then, roll the rolling-pin over the plastic a couple of times.

Gently remove the plastic. There should be a decent indentation. Then take the cookie cutter and cut out the pattern. You may need to twist the cutter to remove the fondant.

Spread a thin layer of buttercream on the cookie.

Then, carefully place the fondant on top of the buttercream.   Decorate as needed.

Overall, it was a really fun project. I also used an edible marker for the first time – doesn’t the baseball look cool?? My favorite cookie overall was the billiard ball though. I can see that this could be a fun family project with older kids or as an activity at a kid’s birthday party.

Posted in Baking | Tagged , , | 3 Comments