Christmas Cookies

Clockwise from top: Chocolate Shots, Chocolate Mint cookies, Shortbread, 
Velvet cookies, Pecan Dreams (center), Peanut Butter Chocolate Thumb-prints.

I have been a baking fool this week!  I've been so busy getting Christmas stuff ready since we are leaving town on Sunday, but I had to get my baking in.  I think I've baked about 250 cookies thus far (only one more variety to go).  Every year I give cookie boxes to a few of our close friends.  It's a lot of work to get so many cookies done, good thing I love to bake.  I'm not an amazing cook, but I can bake.  I like the process, I'm aesthetically driven (so I don't mind the whole decorating part), and I like to eat baked goods!

For Christmas cookies I always make my cookies small & bite size.  I'm not sure why, but I think it has something to do with getting a lot more from a batch.  Also, that's how my sis-in-law Amanda (an amazing cookie maker) taught me to make a few of the recipes so I just stuck with the theme.

Over the next few days I will share a few good cookie recipes, and I mean tasty ones.  I think it is just aweful when you get Christmas cookies that look pretty but taste horrible.  That will not be the case here.  These cookies will taste just as good, if not better, than they look.  If you have a good Christmas cookie recipe email it to me at & I'll post it on The Mixing Bowl page.

Today I want to share my newest invention: Chocolate Mint Cookies.  I was in our little grocery store & found these mint chips.  I would have bought them for the bag alone, I love the look (told you I was aesthetic) and the feel of it (good marketing Guittard).  Not to mention they are mint, which I love.  What really sold me though was that they were on sale.  Woo hoo, I'll take em'!  Not really knowing what I was going to do with them I put them in my basket.  Once home I knew I had to pair them with chocolate.  There are few things as delicious as mint chocolate.  So I went to my favorite cookbook, the 1975 edition Betty Crocker's Cookbook.  I know it's old, but I grew up with this cookbook & have learned so much from it.  It has a great cookie section too.  I found the recipe for Chocolate Drop cookies.  Since I'm a glutton for punishment & have already made seven varieties of cookies, I decided that putting the chips right into the dough was too easy.  Plus, they need to look extra pretty.  So instead I made a little chocolate mint sandwich.  Here's the  recipe:

Chocolate Mint Cookies

1/2 cup butter softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
2 ounces melted unsweetened chocolate (cooled)~
1/3 cup butter milk*
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 oz melted mint chips~

Mix thoroughly butter, sugar, egg, chocolate, buttermilk, and vanilla.  Stir in flour, soda, and salt.  Cover and chill 1 hour.

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls on greased baking sheet.  Bake about 6 minutes ( don't bake too long.  You want them firm, but still chewy).  Immediately rmove from baking sheet and cool.  Meanwhile melt mint chips.

Once cookies are cooled spread a thin layer of the mint on bottom side of one cookie & make a sandwich by placing another cookie on top.  Set aside & let cool until chocolate is firm (but do yourself a favor & eat one of these while they're warm... heaven).

*Don't have buttermilk?  Mix 1tablespoon of vinegar to 1cup of milk & it will work the same.

~Melt chocolate by using a double boiler over hot, but not boiling/simmering water.  Don't have a double boiler, just use a small & medium saucepan (as pictured).  Melt chocolate slowly & stir often.  If you try to melt chocolate too quickly it will burn & be unusable. If chocolate start's to clump it is burning, quickly pull the pan out of the water & stir to cool it down.

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