Published on December 21st, 2013 | by Kristen Swain0
Pretty Homemade Cookies
I am always making cookies and sending them off as gifts for friends, teachers and co-workers. I love to make them just a bit prettier, even though they taste good, I want them to look good as well. I just think it adds that extra touch. We eat with our eyes as much as our mouths. How often do you watch a cooking show and at the end, the chef presents the food as pretty as they can?
I will tell you, sometimes that backfires on me. Once, when taking in cookies at Christmas, my husband offered a co-worker the tin of cookies and asked if the gentleman would like some homemade cookies. The co-worker accused him of offering him store bought because they were so nice looking. The look might be professional, but the taste is singularly handmade. However, the pro-offered pretty homemade cookies were still sampled! LOL!
In continuing with my keep it simple idea about celebrating holidays, I am offering some homemade and store bought dough ideas. You chose, I don’t judge. I find store bought sugar cookie dough delicious. However, store bought chocolate chip dough is just too soft and melts into pancake-like cookies, where we prefer to have thick, soft, and gooey chocolate chip cookies.
I am absolutely NOT bashing the look of homemade cookies, but just in case you want to make your cookies extra special, this is a great way with little extra work to get it done.
First- Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 cup stick butter- softened
1/2 cup sugar
1.5 cups light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
3.5 cups flour
12 oz chocolate chips.
Cream your butter and sugars, add eggs and vanilla, then dry ingredients. Lastly add chocolate chips. I typically add way more chips than called for. And, I prefer Ghiradelli bittersweet chips.
Once you have that done, roll your dough into walnut sized balls. This keeps them uniform.
Have a bowl filled with chocolate chips and dunk your dough ball into the chips. Only add the chips to the top. We use a two finger stance, and push the ball down slightly into the chips.
When you put the cookie dough ball on the tray, it will have a few chips on it, and be just slightly flattened.
Bake off in a 350 oven for 12-15 minutes- depending on how crispy you want your cookies. I prefer softer.
You can also use Holiday M&M’s to make festive cookies. I also mix a couple handfuls in the dough to have them throughout.
I used a mix of baking M&M’s and some picked out of a bag of regular M&m’s.
How about some sugar cookies? Personally, I do not bother with cutout cookies whatsoever. It takes a lot of time that I don’t have. So, I make cute bite-sized sugar cookies, in large batches that are just as yummy and just as festive, without all the extra work. Again, this is my personal choice. And, I think it might be a big help to those who feel that they also don’t have time to make cookies but could easily do this kind of baking.
Wow your family and friends. You baked? “Yes!”, you say with a sly little grin.
I used store-bought dough. Those double-sized tubes. Pillsbury has them out for the holidays. The dough is extra soft. You MUST add flour to it. I believe it’s suggested for cutout cookies anyway, but I add about 1/2 cup to a regular sized tube. Just cut it in half, and have the minions knead the flour into the dough. They love doing that!
Next. Just roll the dough into balls, about the size of a large marble for small bite size cookies, walnut size if you want larger ones. Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes. The edges should not be very brown.
Same technique, dip the top of the cookie into the sprinkles.
Remove it from the bowl and place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
You can see how they are slightly flattened on the cookie sheet. I also find there is a lot less waste of the sprinkles, plus little burnt sugar around the edges of the cookies.
Lovely little bite-sized cookies. Just pop in your mouth for a delicious treat!