Category Archives: Cookies

Tangerine Cranberry Shortbread Cookies

tangerine cranberry shortbread cookies | pale yellowShortbread cookies are apparently my jam for late 2015, they are so easy and fun to roll out.  There is no need to worry about spreading either because of the lack of baking powder and soda.  The dough rolls out smoothly and the delicate flavor of the plain shortbread lends itself to anything your heart images.

tangerine cranberry shortbread cookies | pale yellowIn addition to my love of shortbread, I’ve been loving on cranberries!  In fact, I’m sipping on a delightful cranberry mimosa right now!  Totally in the Christmas spirit!  Cranberries and oranges (or in this case, tangerines) are a perfect match of sweet and sour; both are plentiful and in season.  It’s nice to have a fruity component to the Christmas cookie tray.

tangerine cranberry shortbread cookies | pale yellowWhen I was thinking of cookies for my holiday tray, I wanted representation from all the flavors of the season.  Peppermint, ginger, cranberry, vanilla, nutty, and eggnog all needed to be included, and they are!  There is also a variety of textures like crunchy, creamy, and tender.  Tangerine cranberry shortbread cookies take care of the cranberry and crunchy categories and are perfect for your non-chocolate loving friends.  A delightful addition to my Christmas plate!

tangerine cranberry shortbread cookies | pale yellowTwo Years Ago – Pumpkin Truffles

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Tangerine Cranberry Shortbread Cookies

Adapted from Oh Sweet Day

Yield – 60 2” cookies

 

Cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

zest of 2 tangerines (or 1 orange)

2 cups flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

heaping 1/4 cup dried cranberries

Glaze

1/4 cup fresh tangerine juice (2 1/2 tangerines)

1 1/3 cups powdered sugar

  1. Cookies – In the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment beat the butter until creamy.  Add in the powdered sugar and mix on low until just combined.  Beat in the vanilla and zest.  Scrape down the bowl.
  2. Sift the flour and salt into the butter and mix until just barely incorporated.  Finely chop the cranberries and add those to mixer.  Gently fold in.
  3. Knead the dough slightly so it comes together and then wrap in plastic wrap.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F and line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  5. I wanted thinner cookies, so I rolled the dough on a well floured surface to 1/8” thickness and used a 2” round cutter to make disks.  These baked for 8 minutes.  If you want thicker cookies, they will bake a bit longer.
  6. Cookies should barely brown.  Let cool completely on a wire rack.
  7. Glaze – Whisk together the tangerine juice and powdered sugar until smooth.  Feel free to add more/less powdered sugar for a thicker or thinner glaze.
  8. Drizzle the glaze over each cookie and allow to dry fully before packaging.tangerine cranberry shortbread cookies | pale yellow

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Christmas Vanilla Sprinkle Sugar Cookies

Christams Vanilla Sprinkle Cookies | Pale YellowHere are some lazy-lady Christmas sugar cookies.  Gone are the days when I would take a day off of work to decorate cookies with royal icing; this was after already making, rolling, and baking the cookies!  Decorated sugar cookies are gorgeous and I just wish I had the time/energy to devote to the process, but I don’t.

Christams Vanilla Sprinkle Cookies | Pale YellowEnter this sprinkle cookie, possibly the next best thing!  Make the dough, add a ton of sprinkles, roll/cut, and bake.  You’re done.  The cookies aren’t too sweet and take a fraction of the time.  Sprinkle cookies are adorable and easy.  They are buttery and chewy and make a delightful addition to any holiday cookie tray!Christams Vanilla Sprinkle Cookies | Pale Yellow

One Year Ago – Gingerbread Cookie Dough Truffles

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Christmas Vanilla Sprinkle Sugar Cookies

Adapted from Glorious Treats

Yield – 34 cookies

 

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup sugar

1 vanilla bean, split

1 egg

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup assorted Christmas sprinkles

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter until creamy.
  2. Add the sugar and seeds of the vanilla bean to the butter and take a minute to massage the vanilla into the sugar.  Beat until pale yellow.
  3. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract, scrape the bowl as needed.
  4. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into the butter mixture and mix on the lowest speed until barely combined.  Beat in the sprinkles.
  5. Break the dough into 2 balls and wrap in plastic wrap.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  6. Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F and line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  7. Roll out the dough on a well floured surface to 1/4” thickness.  Use your favorite cookie cutters to cut shapes and place on a the cookie sheets.  The cookies do not spread, so they can be placed close together.  Repeat with remaining dough.
  8. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the edges just begin to brown.  Move to a rack.
  9. Let cool completely on a wire rack before storing.Christams Vanilla Sprinkle Cookies | Pale Yellow

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Buckeye Cookies

Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014So many cookie swaps, so little time!  Today it’s the FB Cookie Swap from the lovely Julie of The Little Kitchen and Lindsey of Love and Olive Oil.  After last year’s fun, I could resist doing it again!  Instead of peppermint + chocolate, I went with another one of my favorite pairings chocolate + peanut butter.

Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014I sent out some great cookies, no bragging intended.  But they were really, really tasty!  I had to make a double batch so I would have plenty to mail out plus enough to save for photographing when I was able to get some weekend sunlight.  This time of year is brutally limited for natural light.  I ate at least one of these cookies everyday for breakfast without fail, I couldn’t resist.  These cookies have everything a traditional buckeye has plus a brownie base.  To be fair, I know they sort of look like turds, but the inside is beautiful!  I’m just going to call it like I see it…Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014A crispy, fudgy bottom with a sweet, creamy peanut butter filling is hard to resist; add chocolate on top and I’m swooning!  I’m glad I had so many cookies leftover for eating and sharing with local friends!  I hope Ruthy of Omeletta, Susan of That Susan Williams, and Stephanie of Steph’s Bite by Bite enjoyed them as much as I did!

Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014When you’re receiving a dozen cookies from three different bloggers PLUS eating leftover cookies in your own kitchen, it is best to share the bounty with coworkers.  Surprisingly, not everyone was okay with eating cookies from strangers.  The weird thing is, even though I don’t know anyone in the swap IRL, it does not seem strange and the bloggers seem familiar.  Everyone is in their kitchen doing their thing and blogging about it just like me.  I love that we are able to share are goodies with others.  It’s the best we have until smells and tastes can be transmitted through the interwebs!fbcookieswap2014_woodLGI was super fortunate to receive an amazing selection of cookies!  Mieke of Mieke Z Mackay sent lovely oatmeal cookies with chocolate chips and nuts; salty sweet deliciousness!  Amy of Club Narwhal sent delightfully dunk-able biscotti; chocolate and vanilla with cranberries and pistachios!  Last, but not least, Tux of Brooklyn Homemaker sent some divine gingerbread linzer cookies with a white chocolate-orange ganache filling; I can’t wait until he posts the recipe so I can make another batch!  A successful cookie swap for 2014, I can’t wait for 2015.  As Lynn said, “I must be doing something right!”Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014

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Buckeye Cookies

Adapted from OMG Chocolate Desserts

Yield – 56 cookies

 

16 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

4 eggs

1 1/4 cups sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups creamy peanut butter

2 cups powdered sugar

10 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

1 tablespoon shortening

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F and line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a double boiler, melt the the chocolate and butter until smooth.  Meanwhile, whisk together the eggs, vanilla, and sugar in a medium bowl.
  3. Slowly add the melted chocolate to the eggs, stirring the whole time until well incorporated.
  4. Sift in the flour, baking powder, and salt.  Stir until completely mixed in.
  5. Use a 1-tablespoon scoop to portion the dough on the parchment-lined cookie sheet.  The cookies do not spread much, so the dough can be fairly close together.
  6. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until just set.  Let sit on the cookie sheet for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
  7. While the cookies are baking, mix together the peanut butter and powdered sugar until well combined.  Roll into small balls.
  8. As soon as the cookies come out of the oven, while they are resting on the cookie sheet, smush a ball of peanut butter in the center of each cookie.
  9. Once cookies are cooled completely, melt the semisweet chocolate chips and shortening together in a double boiler until smooth.
  10. Dip the top of each cookie in the chocolate and let harden on a rack before packaging.Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014

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Chocolate Dipped Pistachio Shortbread

chocolate dipped pistachio shortbread | pale yellowThe last week has reeked havoc on my kitchen.  Every night has a sink full of dishes and flour on the floor.  But it’s all worth it because I can now bring you seven straight days of holiday cookies and treats.  Holiday baking is my favorite time of year!

chocolate dipped pistachio shortbread | pale yellowIt’s always a struggle between old favorites and new recipes.  My only limitations are the hours in the evening and Tupperware. Here is one new recipe inspired by the SRC Cookie Carnival.

chocolate dipped pistachio shortbread | pale yellowA Cookie Carnival?  How could I resist?  The Secret Recipe Club did a holiday cookie post and I could not resist.  I was assigned Karen from Karen’s Kitchen Stories.  Her blog is lovely and features recipes she makes for her family.  We have similar styles in that we both love to share recipes, slightly adapted, from cookbooks, blogs, and magazines.  Blogging is fun hobby that allows us to share treats with others.

scr club christmasThese cookies are gorgeous, easy, and super tasty!  Their light green color is perfect for a Christmas cookie tray and I love the saltiness from the pistachios on the outside.  The cookies have everything you want – crispy, crunchy, salty, sweet, and chocolate!  The flavor is a subtle pistachio taste that is delightful!

chocolate dipped pistachio shortbread | pale yellowTwo Years Ago – Candy Cane Truffles

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Chocolate Dipped Pistachio Shortbread

Adapted from Karen’s Kitchen Stories

Yield – 24-32 cookies

 

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/4 cup sugar

1 box (3.4 oz) instant pistachio pudding mix

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

8.2 ounces flour

10 ounces bittersweet chocolate

1 tablespoon shortening

1/2 cup pistachios, chopped finely

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F and grease a 9×13” pan with shortening.  Cut a sheet of parchment paper to fit the bottom of the pan and grease that as well.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment until light and fluffy.  Add in the pudding, salt, and vanilla.  Mix until well combined and scrape the bowl as needed.
  3. Add the flour and mix on low until just combined.
  4. Press the mixture as evenly as possible in the prepared pan.  If your hands get warm and sticky (mine always do), wet them with cold water and dry.
  5. Bake for 35-45 minutes until the edges just begin to brown.  Remove from the oven and immediately use a bench scraper or knife to cut the shortbread into pieces.
  6. Let cool completely in the pan.
  7. Melt the chocolate and shortening in the bowl of a double boiler until smooth.  Chop the pistachios while the chocolate is melting.
  8. Dip a third of each cookie in the chocolate and then press into the chopped pistachios.  Let dry on a cooling rack with parchment paper underneath to catch drips.
  9. Allow the chocolate to harden before packaging.chocolate dipped pistachio shortbread | pale yellow

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Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale YellowCookies, cookies, cookies!  They have been churning out my kitchen at a rapid pace.  I finally made time to decide on recipes for my Christmas cookie plate and have started baking.  It feels good!  However, the flour all over the floor and never-ending sink-full of dishes does not feel so good.  I’m really missing the dishwasher right about now.

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale YellowNext week will be cookie week; six straight days of cookies that could adorn your holiday dessert table.  After a fall of not blogging as much as I would like, I’m trying to make up for it in December.  Clearly I have extra time without reading and writing about the conservation issues facing the world’s biomes.

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale YellowThese cookies are the result of trying to use up my hoarded stock of peanut butter chips and chocolate chips.  Whenever they are on sale, I tend to buy a few bags, but the drawer I keep them in is now over filling.  In fact, due to a recent $2.99 sale on Ghiradelli chocolate chips, my stash is now kept in a grocery bag #BakerProblems.

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale YellowI’m beginning to adore shortbread cookies.  They are crisp and almost melt in your mouth with a touch of sweetness.  The initial plainness lends itself well to adding any and every flavor.  Look out for some more shortbread cookies coming your way, they are an easy and delightful way to add variety to the Christmas cookie line up!

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale YellowTwo Years Ago – Pecan Bark

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Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter

Adapted from Dine and Dish

Yield – 30 cookies

 

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

pinch of salt

1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped out

1/2 cup powdered sugar

2 cups flour

1 cup peanut chips

2 tablespoon coconut oil, divided

1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips

  1. Preheat to oven to 350 ˚F and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Add the butter and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment.  Split the vanilla bean and scrape the seeds from inside, add to the butter.  Beat until pale yellow and then beat in the powdered sugar until well combined.
  3. Add the flour and mix until just combined.  The dough will appear crumbly, but stays together if your squeeze it into a ball.
  4. Flour your surface and rolling pin.  Roll the dough to 1/4” thick and cut into circles.
  5. Place the circles on the lined cookie tray.  Bake for 18-20 minutes or until the cookies just begin to brown.
  6. Let cool completely on a wire rack before dipping.
  7. Melt the peanut butter chips and 1 tablespoon coconut oil in a double boiler.  Dip part of each cookie into the mixture and place on a wire rack.  Refrigerate the wire rack and cookies to speed up the hardening process.
  8. Meanwhile, melt the chocolate chips with the remaining tablespoon of coconut oil.  Dip the cookies and allow to harden on a wire rack.Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale Yellow

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Carrot Oatmeal Cookies with Cranberries and Chocolate Chips

carrot oatmeal cookies with cranberries and chocolate chips | pale yellowI come from a family of sweet tooth-s; everyone takes “small slivers” of each dessert and there are always plenty of cookies, pies, cakes, and puddings at family gatherings.  My grandpa keeps a stock of sweets like Honey Buns and a full cookie jar.  Since he moved into a new place, I wanted to make sure he had some sweet treats to keep him full.

carrot oatmeal cookies with cranberries and chocolate chips | pale yellowWhile perusing Cookie Princess’s blog Secrets from the Cookie Princess for this month’s Secret Recipe Club, I looked for a recipe that would be “grandfather” friendly!  A recipe with oatmeal, carrots, and cranberries just scream grandparents, but trust me, people all ages will enjoy these cookies.  I added chocolates because, why not!  With the applesauce, carrots, and oatmeal, it almost feels like you could justify eating these cookies for breakfast.  Do it!  That’s my favorite part of the holiday season, eating cookies every day for breakfast; at least these are healthier!

newsrcbannerI still haven’t finalized my holiday baking list, there are too many ideas and recipes with too little time.  Now that I’m done with grad school for the semester, I can have all fun!  These cookies are all the fun too!  They are super moist from the applesauce and tender from the oatmeal and carrots.  The cranberries and chocolate chips add texture, flavor, and interest.  Finally, the cinnamon and freshly grated nutmeg add the best of flavors.  It’s time to make cookies!carrot oatmeal cookies with cranberries and chocolate chips | pale yellow

One Year Ago – What I Learned This Week #9

Two Years Ago – Vanilla Vodka Chai Cocktail

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Carrot Oatmeal Cookies with Cranberries and Chocolate Chips

Adapted from Secrets from a Cookie Princess

Yield – 38 cookies 2-tablespoon cookies

 

1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

3/4 cup sugar

1 egg

2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 of a whole nutmeg grated

3/4 cup flour

1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour

1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats

1 cup shredded carrots

1 cup dried cranberries

1 cup mini chocolate chips

  1. Cream together the butter and sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment until light and fluffy.  Add the egg, applesauce, and vanilla and beat until well combined.  Scrape the bowl as needed.
  2. Add in the baking powder, soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Mix until well incorporated.  Add the flours and mix until barely combined.  Mix in the oats, carrots, cranberries, and chocolate chips until just mixed.
  3. Stir with a rubber spatula to make sure everything is well incorporated.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F and line your cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Use a two-tablespoon scoop to portion the dough on the cookie sheet about 2 inches apart.  Bake for 15 minutes or until just set.
  6. Move to a wire rack to cool completely.carrot oatmeal cookies with cranberries and chocolate chips | pale yellow

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Slovak Crescent Cookies

Slovak Crescent Cookies | Pale YellowThere are a few holiday traditions that are more important than making the family cookies that only appear once a year.  My mom and I would go to my grandmas, sit at the same corner table, roll out the dough, fill, bake, and laugh.  We would always burn our tongues eating a cookie straight off the cookie sheet before they have a chance to properly cool.

Slovak Crescent Cookies | Pale YellowLast year was the first year my mom or I made the dough.  In previous years my grandma always made the fillings and dough before we arrived so we could focus on rolling out, filling, and rolling up the crescents.  These cookies are definitely a 2-3 person job!  Apparently my great grandmother used to make countless batches of these cookies all on her own.  Someday I hope to have that kind of time available to me!

Slovak Crescent Cookies | Pale YellowThis year Christmas traditions are going to change it bit.  It’ll be just my mom and I making the cookies and we will no longer be gathering in my grandparent’s 70’s themed basement tearing up the kids table on Christmas Eve.  My brother has the ping pong table, I took an awesome owl-string-art wall piece, and the rest of their house is being divided up.  I’ve missed my grandma everyday since she has left, but the next few weeks are going to make the loss that much more real.  I treasure all the memories I have with my grandmother shopping, baking, and spending all and every holiday together.  This grief thing is hard, do you ever stop missing someone you love?

Slovak Crescent Cookies | Pale YellowThese cookies are a quintessential part of my holiday a season, I think they would make a fantastic addition to your Christmas cookie tray!  There are quite a few steps involved in making the cookies, but every buttery, flaky bite is worth it.  The key tip – use the lid of a large sauce pan to cut perfect circles ready to cut into eighths and rolled into lovely crescents!  Honestly, I do not like the apricot ones, it’s all about the walnuts!

Slovak Crescent Cookies | Pale YellowTwo Years Ago – Banana Bread with Hazelnuts

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Slovak Crescent Cookies
Adapted from the Slovak Ladies’ Anniversary Cookbook
Yield – 80 cookies

dried apricots + water + sugar
walnuts + milk + sugar
3 sticks margarine (Blue Bonnet), room temperature
1 cup sour cream
3 egg yolks
3 cups flour + more for rolling
powdered sugar for dusting

  1. Make the fillings the day before.
  2. Apricot – Boil dried apricots with a little water and sugar until soft.  Let cool completely.
  3. Walnut – Finely chop the walnuts.  Mix with a little milk and sugar until the nuts are moist and sweet.  Refrigerate overnight.
  4. Beat the margarine and and sour cream in the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment until light and creamy.  Beat in the egg yolks.  Scrape the bowl.
  5. Mix in the flour on low speed until just combined.  The dough will be very sticky.
  6. With floured hands, divide the dough into 8 disks.  Place the disks between sheets of wax paper and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  7. Preheat the oven to 325 ˚F.
  8. Liberally flour your surface and rolling pin, don’t be afraid to use a lot of flour.  Roll each disk into a 10-inch circle, trim if necessary.  Collect the trimmings to reroll once.
  9. Cut the circle into 8 pieces and place a teaspoon of filling on the wide end.  Tuck in the edges and roll tightly.  Place on the cookie sheet flap side down and bend into a crescent shape.
  10. Place 2-3 batches on each cookie sheet.  Bake for 15-20 minute or until the cookies just begin to brown.  Let cool completely on a wire rack.
  11. Before serving dust with powdered sugar.Slovak Crescent Cookies | Pale Yellow

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