Friday, April 8, 2011

Easter Egg Cookies (aka Glitter Balls)

I found these cookies on the great site Cosmo Cookie and the pictures were so enticing I had to make them. The original name is the "Glitter Ball" cookie, but I think I'll call them Easter Egg cookies since that's what they remind me of!

I'll copy the recipe here but I have no problem saying Cosmo Cookie does a much better job of going through it with beautiful pictures, so it's worth going to that blog post!

Some comments: the cookies are kind of dry- they are basically butter cookies, with a shortbread-like consistency. But the finished product, with all the sugar sprinkles and the creamy frosting filling, comes out tasting pretty good. They're sweet but a little heavy. A good "let's get dressed up and go to a party" cookie, not so much a "let's have cookies by the fireplace and read a book" cookie.

See also my note at the end about the filling!

-----Here's the recipe: -----
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1/4 teaspoones salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Sanding sugar, in assorted colors

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat butter, confectioners' sugar, and salt with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes, scraping down side of bowl as necessary. beat in vanilla. Reduce speed to low; add flour, and mix just until combined. Shape into 3/4-inch balls (chill dough if too sticky). Place sanding sugar in shallow bowls. Roll each ball in sanding sugar, and place on parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart.

Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until edges are lightly golden, 15 to 18 minutes. let cookies cool completely on a wire rack. While cooling, make filling!

Creamy Ginger Filling

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger

Beat all ingredients by hand or with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until smooth. Filling can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days.

Spread 2 cookies with just enough filling to allow them to stick together.

*I played around with the filling flavoring, because I thought it would be fun to have each color be a different flavor. After mixing only the sugar and butter, I split the frosting into 3 separate bowls, and then added the reduced amount of ginger & honey to one bowl for the original recipe. In addition to the ginger filling, I also made a cinnamon cheesecake filling (I have some cheesecake flavoring from a local bake store that came in handy!), as well as an almond filling which worked really nicely with these cookies (add a little almond extract).

Overall: a good, pretty cookie. Some cookies are better seen than eaten; I wouldn't go quite that far with these, but they are no chunky monkey. ;-)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Pumpkin scones: made!

I made these harvest pumpkin scones today, and they are yummy!

Some recommendations: they have a good consistency and are not dry, but I think they could maybe be even a little moister. Might add slightly more pumpkin next time.

Also, I used crystallized ginger only b/c my store didn't have cinnamon chips, but next time I am definitely not skipping the chips! The ones I made are good, but need a little something. I'd also recommend trying dried fruit- golden raisins, cranberries, and dates, and figs would all go nicely in these scones.

I like cutting the scones smaller than the recipe calls for (yielded somewhere around 20 scones), so cooking time was only about 16 minutes for my more petite scones.

Definitely worth trying. The pumpkin flavor is nice- reminds me slightly of fall, but isn't so overwhelming that they can't be made any time of year!