Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Cookie Party!

Visiting family in Maine this week for Christmas, and was too busy to post yesterday because we were having a COOKIE PARTY, which may just be the best idea ever for a holiday open house. My Mom made five different kinds of cookies, and supplemented with a few from Trader Joe's. (Yes, five different kinds of cookies, the week before Christmas. See where I get it from?)

My mother and sister, with a display of about half the cookies actually baked!

Mom flipped through recipes that are family favorites, and chose a few new ones from (of course) the Martha Stewart Cookie cookbook, and provided an amazingly tasty variety with coffee and tea and spiced cranberry apple cider.

We had almond cookies, a butter cream cheese walnut cookie, chocolate cookies, pinwheels, gingersnaps, and peppermint cookies from Trader Joe's.

Among the winners was our traditional favorite, Mamie Ruth's chocolate cookies, a recipe that's been in the family for generations. It's one I make every year, and was actually features on our Christmas Card this year.

Here's the recipe:

4 oz. unsweetened chocolate
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
confectionary sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt the unsweetened chocolate in a double boiler and allow to cool. Cream the eggs, vegetable oil, sugar, vanilla and chocolate together in a mixer. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt, then add to the wet ingredients and mix well. Refrigerate for an hour and a half or overnight. Drop by rounded tablespoon into confectionary sugar, flatten slightly, and bake 10-12 minutes on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Cookies should still look slightly moist as you pull them out of the oven - do NOT overbake! I often will make a batch, cool them slightly, and then try one to ensure I haven't overbaked them.

Makes approximately four dozen cookies.

Merry Christmas!

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