Christmas cookies

I’m such a delinquent blogger. But see, I have excuses. I disappeared to Portland for a week, which was lovely and glorious and relaxing. There was lots of chocolate. As much as I love these mini-trips across the border, I’m always a bit relieved to get back to Canada. This informative sign was at the Seattle train station. Just in case you wanted to know what you can and cannot bring across the border.

And then I got back and this craziness we call the holidays came at me, starting out like a wee snowball at the top of a mountain. And by the time it got to me, well, it was a not-so-wee snowball.

Mostly, I’ve been drowning under kilograms of flour, sugar, eggs and stuff that needs to be piped. I’ve been making the same two cookies (gingerbread and cranberry shortbread) every year for twelve, count ’em, twelve years. You’d figure I could get the recipe right, especially having gone to Le Fancy Culinary School. This year, the part of my brain responsible for reading and following instructions just wasn’t working. I have one batch of dough in the fridge that was supposed to be gingerbread. However, it has twice as much butter as it’s supposed to, and no ginger. I’m afraid to bake it. Maybe I invented molasses shortbread?

Speaking of shortbread, I forgot the cornstarch this year but made up for it by putting in twice as many cranberries as I was supposed to. They’re, erm, festive.

At least the macaroons turned out. Oh, and chocolate caramel. The wonders of caramel never cease to amaze me. You can put bacon in it and it’s all wacky and weird and delicious. But chocolate caramel, with its classic simplicity – it hides in dark corners and gives you that look, and before you know it you’re in over your head with dark, delicious chocolate mingled with smoky caramel, and just a hint of salt.

All of these things combine to form Christmas Goodies Fantastico, which contains:

  • “Economic downturn” gingerbread, which feature sad faces and fancy suits. Because, well, we’ve got to keep up appearances in these tough times. But in the crazy market this year, some of these gingerbread folks lost an arm, or a leg…or, a head.
  • The aformentioned cranberry shortbread, looking very festive indeed.
  • Chocolate macaroons, beautiful and classic. In my original plan, I was going to make a rainbow of these (espresso, pistachio and raspberry) but then I snapped back to reality.
  • The much sought-after chocolate caramels. For those of you lucky enough to receive these, you may want to hide these. I don’t want to have to say I told you so.

As I probably won’t be posting before Christmas, have a safe and happy holiday. I hope there are cookies in your future.

Published by: Eagranie

7 years as a chemist + 9 months of culinary school + 2 years as a pastry chef & chocolatier + a lifetime of writing = this blog. This blog won't always be about chocolate, but it will almost certainly be about food. The name of the blog is a triple play on words. 1. It's a nod to my training as a classical pianist. Among other fantastic accomplishments, J.S. Bach combined technical prowess with artistic inspiration and penned the 24 preludes & fugues that make up The Well-Tempered Clavier, Books I and II. 2. In order to behave properly, chocolate needs to be tempered. In a nutshell, tempering prompts the chocolate to assume its most stable crystalline form (beta prime, if you're interested) so that it is shiny, snappy, and as stable as it can be. 3. Depending on my mood and how we meet, you might agree that I'm well-tempered. Or not.

Categories 2009, Homemade, TravelTags, , , , , , , 3 Comments

3 thoughts on “Christmas cookies”

  1. Clearly, bees are only a problem on the east coast. We west coasters (make mock west-syyyyyde hand gesture here) have more important things to think about.

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