Chocolate Cookies

1 package cake mix (Devil’s Food)
1/3 c. vegetable oil
2 eggs
Sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Stir cake mix (dry) and next two ingredients in large bowl with spoon until dough forms. Roll dough into 1-inch balls. Roll in sugar and put two inches apart on ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 9 minutes or until firm. Cool cookies on wire rack.

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Cappuccino-Pistachio Shortbread

2 tbs dry cappuccino instant coffee mix
1 tbs water
3/4 cut butter (room temperature)
1/2 c. confectioner’s sugar
2 c. flour
1/2 c. chopped pistachio nuts
1 oz. semisweet baking chocolate or white chocolate
1 tsp. shortening

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, combine coffee mix and water and dissolve. Add butter and confectioner’s sugar and beat on medium to high speed until creamy or stir by hand. Slowly add in flour and nuts until stiff dough forms using hands if necessary. Dive the dough equally in half. Form each half in a ball patting each one into a 6 inch round, approximately 1/2 inch thick on lightly floured surface. Slice each round into 16 wedges. Place 1/2 inch apart with pointed ends toward center on ungreased baking sheet. Bake approximately 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove immediately to wire rack. Cool completely.

Put chocolate and shortening in small microwavable bowl. Microwave uncovered on 50 percent (medium) 3 to 4 minutes, stirring after 2 minutes until mixture is smooth and thin enough to drizzle. Drizzle over cookies.

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Brandied Fruit Drops

3/4 c. firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 c. butter (room temperature)
1/3 c. brandy
2 eggs
2 c. all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 c. pecans (chopped)
1 c. dried apricots (chopped)
1/2 c. currants
1/2 c. golden raisins

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease baking sheet. Mix together the first four ingredients in large bowl on low to medium speed or mix with spoon. Gradually stir in the next five ingredients. Fold in the pecans, apricots, currants and golden raisins. Form dough into balls and place two inches apart on baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes or until drops are golden brown. Move cookies to wire rack and cool.

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Black-Eyed Susan

3/4 c. butter (room temperature)
1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp vanilla flavoring
11 drops yellow food coloring (approximately)
1 egg
3 oz. softened cream cheese
2 cups flour
3 dozen chocolate chips (approximately)

Mix first six ingredients in large bowl at low to medium speed or mix by hand with spoon. Gradually stir in the flour. Cover and refrigerate until dough is chilled and firm. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Form dough into 1 1/4 inch balls and place approximately 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheet. To form flower petals, cut with sharp knife the top of each ball three times about 3/4 through to make 6 wedges. Slightly move wedges apart to form petals (note that cookies will flatten during baking). Bake for 10 minutes or until cookies are set and edges appear golden brown. Immediately place 1 chocolate chip in center of cookie. Move cookies to wire rack.

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Anise Biscotti

1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter (at room temperature)
2 tsp ground anise seed
2 tsp grated lemon peel
2 eggs
3 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together first five ingredients in a large bowl with mixer on low to medium speed or mix by hand. Add in remaining ingredients. Divide dough in half and shape each into a 10 x 3 rectangle on ungreased baking sheet.

Bake approximately 20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool on baking sheet for 15 minutes.

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Almond Filled Crescents

1 cup confectioners sugar
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 eggs
3 3/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
7 oz almond paste
3/4 cups butter (room temperature)
Easy Glaze (recipe below)

Easy Glaze Ingredients:

1 cups confectioners sugar
6 – 7 tsp milk

For crescents, combine first three ingredients in large bowl with spoon. Fold in flour, baking powder and salt (mixture will be stiff).

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Break apart almond paste into smaller pieces in medium bowl then add butter. Mix on low speed until combined then mix at higher speed until fluffy. (Please note that bits of almond paste will be visible). On a floured surface, roll 1/4 of dough into a 10-inch circle. Gently spread 1/4 almond paste mixture (approximately 1/2 cup) covering circle. Slice into 12 wedges. Beginning at the rounded edges, gently roll wedges to form crescent. Place with points underneath on an ungreased baking sheet. Follow procedure with rest of dough and almond mixture. Bake 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from sheet and cool before decorating with glaze.

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Almond Macaroons

7 oz almond paste
1/4 cups flour
1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar
1/4 tsp almond flavoring
2 egg whites
36 blanched almonds (whole)

Grease baking sheet. Break apart almond paste in smaller pieces into a large bowl. Stir flour, almond flavoring and confectioners sugar into bowl. Add whites of eggs and mix on low to medium speed for approximately 2 minutes while occasionally scraping sides of bowl. Mix until smooth. Place prepared dough in decorating bag with number 9 rosette tip. Pipe carefully 1 1/2 inch cookies two inches apart onto baking sheet. Place almond on top of cookie. Put in refrigerator for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Bake approximately 12 minutes until macaroon edges are golden brown. Move to wire rack and cool.

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Snickerdoodles

1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup butter or margarine (softened)
2 eggs
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

Heat oven to 400º. Mix 1/4 cup sugar and the cinnamon; set aside. Beat 1 1/2 cups sugar, the shortening, butter and eggs in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed, or mix with spoon. Stir in flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. Shape dough into 1 1/4″ balls. Roll in sugar-cinnamon mixture. Place about 2″ apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake about 10 minutes or until centers are almost set. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack.

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Dream Bars

1/3 cup butter or margarine — softened
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
Almond-Coconut Topping — (recipe follows)

Almond Coconut Topping Ingredients:

2 eggs (beaten)
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup chopped almonds
3/4 cup brown sugar (packed)
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt

Heat oven to 350º. Mix butter and brown sugar in small bowl with spoon. Stir in flour. Press in ungreased rectangular pan, 13 H 9 H 2 inches. Bake 10 minutes. Spread Almond-Coconut Topping over baked layer. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until topping is golden brown. Cool 30 minutes. Cut 8 rows by 4 rows while warm.

Almong Coconut Topping Directtions:

Mix all ingredients.

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Lemon Bars

1 package lemon cake mix
1/3 cup butter or margarine (softened)
3 eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1/4 cup lemon juice
Powdered sugar (optional)

Heat oven to 350º. Mix cake mix (dry), butter and 1 of the eggs with spoon until crumbly; reserve 1 cup. Press remaining crumbly mixture lightly in bottom of ungreased rectangular pan, 9×13 inches. Bake about 10 minutes or until light brown. Beat remaining 2 eggs, the granulated sugar, baking powder, salt, lemon peel and lemon juice with hand beater until light and foamy. Pour over hot baked layer. Sprinkle with reserved crumbly mixture. Bake about 15 minutes or until light brown and set. Sprinkle with powdered sugar; cool.

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