Christmas Cookies 2014

Starting at the wreath and going around to the right: spritz wreath, Hungarian love letters, maid of honor, strawberry marzipan, Austrian nut butter, spritz tree, cream wafer snowman, black walnut fudge, and a sugar cookie star in the center.  Not pictured:  big soft ginger cookies with lemon cream frosting. 

How to Get Rid of Leftover Cake

The place is loaded with all sorts of Christmas goodies and an birthday cake on top of that.  So when a invite to a small get together comes in with a bring the treat assignment one  thinks, "perfect I can get rid of this cake."  And then you turn to look at it and see this:
But then it turns into this: 
Cake Balls or Cake Pops From Leftover Cake
Or What To Do With Leftover Cake
Make about 40 balls from half of a cake 

Half of a leftover cake ( I think I said that already)
6 oz chocolate chips, I used Andes Baking Chips
1 1/2 T. shortening or coconut oil
Some kind of embellishment

Scrap the frosting off of the top and sides of the cake.   Leave the frosting in the middle.  Put the remaining cake in a bowl and mash it all together.  I used my hands.  Form into 1-inch balls.  Place on a cookie sheet, tray or plate lined with parchment or waxed paper.  Place in the refrigerator or freezer for a bit to firm up.  Meanwhile place the chips and shortening or coconut oil in a heat proof bowl.  Place over simmering water to melt the chocolate.  Mix the melted chips and oil.  Take the chilled balls out of the fridge or freezer.  Since they are slightly firm and will hold their shape better, fix any misshaped ones.  Using 2 spoons, dip them one at a time in the melted chocolate and roll them around a couple of times.  Lift out and drain just a bit.  Place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment or waxed paper.  If adding a sprinkle, do so while the chocolate is still wet.  Once the cookie sheet is full, you can place in the fridge to quicken the hardening process.  

I doubled the chocolate and shortening.  I don't think 6 oz is enough.

Our Christmas Tree

We had a Concolor fir dying in our yard so I put it to good use.  We chopped it down and it's now the Christmas tree.  It was dead 6 feet on the top and we also had to take off a lot of the bottom.  It is basically the middle of the tree.  My daughter described it as a Charlie Brown tree.  On Crack.  I'm so mad at myself for not thinking of this idea earlier since we cut down 4 other pines in previous years.  Beware all ye evergreens.  

Christmas Tree Song

Uh Christmas tree, 
Er Christmas tree,
You really need some branches.
Um Christmas tree,
Uh Christmas tree,
You really need some branches.
Not only are they scraggly,
They're also much too wide, you see.
Uh Christmas tree,
Er Christmas tree,
You really need some branches. 

Fruit Juice Glogg

Fruit-Juice Glogg
Saft Glogg—Sweden

From SH

1 medium orange
1 qt. apple cider
2 cups white grape juice or currant juice
¼ cup sugar

1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
8 whole cloves
⅔ cup raisins
⅔ cup slivered blanched almonds

Using a vegetable peeler, cut colored portion from orange in a single spiral. Reserve orange for another purpose.

In a large pot, combine orange peel and remaining ingredients. Let stand 4 hours. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low; simmer 30 minutes.

Serve hot or cold in punch cups, including some raisins and almonds in each serving.

Makes 12 servings.

Old Tins

Update old tins by spray painting the lid and/or base with chalkboard spray paint.  With any spray paint for that matter.  

Big Soft Ginger Cookies

Big Soft Ginger Cookies
From Country Home 1999
Makes 2-2 1/2 dozen

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup molasses
2 tablespoons white sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  

In a medium bowl combine the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt; set aside.

In a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed beat butter for 30 seconds.  Beat in the 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy.  Add egg and molasses; beat well.  Stir flour mixture into egg mixture. 

Shape dough into 1 1/2-inch size balls, using about 1 heaping tablespoon of dough for each.  Roll balls in the 2 tablespoons of sugar to coat. Place balls 2 1/2-inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake for 10 minutes or until light brown and still puffed.  (Do not overbake.)  Cool cookies on cookie sheet for 2 minutes.  Transfer cookies to a wire rack and let cool.   

Sometimes I frost them with a lemon frosting. My family loves these. Frosting: 2 c. powdered sugar, 1/2 c. butter, softened, 3 T lemon juice

With 2 dozen cookies: 
1 cookies equals 143 calories, 21.1 g carbohydrates, 9 mg cholesterol, 6 g fat, .04 g fiber, 1.6 g protein, 147 mg sodium.
With 2 1/2 dozen:
1 cookie equals 111 calories, 5 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 19 mg cholesterol, 98 mg sodium, 16 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, 1 g protein.