Tag Archives: cookie exchange

White Chocolate Dipped Ginger Cookies

I love cookies exchanges and don’t really know why they just happen around the holidays. I’d be just as happy to swap cookies in July as December, but I guess just being part of the food blogger community I’m swapping ideas and recipes year round, right?

This weekend I attended a cookie swap at my neighbor’s house. It was wonderful. There were more than a dozen varieties of cookies and holiday sweets to sample and great people to socialize with. I left with a whole bunch of cookies to share and some new plans for recipes to try in the future. My contribution were these White Chocolate Dipped Ginger Cookies.

White Chocolate Dipped Ginger Cookies

As you know, I spend a fair amount of time checking out cookbooks and the internet for recipe ideas. This time of year so many food blogs have posts dedicated to holiday cookies and I just bookmarked and pinned everything that looked good. This one stood out.

I’ve always loved spice cookies this time of year. Don’t tell anyone but I prefer them to chocolate. The slightly tangy flavor of the combination of these spices is one I really enjoy. I liked these cookies for the exchange because not only were they fitting for the season, but they looked like they would hold up well to be transported to my neighbor’s home then exchanged with the other guests. The recipe makes enough to share (and then some) so I didn’t need to worry about doubling it in order to have enough. Not to mention they just look so pretty after being dipped in white chocolate. The cookies are soft but not crumbly and the white chocolate adds the perfect amount of sweetness and is a nice contrast to the spices. Is it okay to admit I took a few of my own cookies home from the cookie swap?

White Chocolate Dipped Ginger Cookies

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White Chocolate Dipped Ginger Cookies (adapted with minimal modifications from Brandy’s Baking)

Yield: 6-7 dozen cookies

2 cups granulated sugar, plus more for rolling

1 1/2 cups vegetable oil

2 eggs

1/2 cup molasses

4 cups all-purpose flour

4 teaspoons baking soda

3 teaspoons ground ginger

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon salt

2 packages (each with 10-12 ounces) white chocolate chips

1/4 cup shortening

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350F.

2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the sugar and oil. Then beat in each egg followed by the molasses.

3. Combine the dry ingredients, flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl, then add gradually to the bowl of the mixer with the wet ingredients and mix well.

4. Roll the dough into 1 inch balls. Roll each ball in sugar. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets (though I used silpats) and bake for 12-15 minutes until the cookies are golden brown in color and the cookie springs back when lightly touched. Cool on wire racks.

5. In a large microwave safe bowl, melt the white chocolate chips and shortening. Stop after every 30 seconds to stir the mixture and ensure it doesn’t burn. It should take 1 1/2 to 2 minutes to be smooth and melted.

6. Dip the cookies halfway into the melted chocolate, allowing excess to drip off. Place the cookies on waxed paper or on silpats until the chocolate is set.

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Chocolate Mint Cookie Bites

I’ve been scoping out recipes for the holiday cookie season for a while and this one definitely caught my eye. Chocolate, chocolate, and more chocolate. Yippee! These little chocolate-y cups looked so appetizing to bring to my potluck luncheon at work. I modified the original recipe just a little bit to make them more festive by adding hints of mint to each stage of the baking process.

Chocolate Mint Cookie Cups

First I made the dough, which had 2 types of chocolate, both unsweetened cocoa powder and mini chocolate chips, which added moistness and extra rich chocolate flavor when they were baked. The mint here was from a half teaspoon of peppermint extract. After chilling the dough, I divided it into 48 portions and rolled each one into a ball, which I placed in a mini muffin tin.

Chocolate Mint Cookie Cups

After baking the cookies for 11 minutes, I let them cool in the pan briefly, then carefully removed them to cool further. A slight indentation for the topping started to form during cooling.

Chocolate Mint Cookie Cups

Once cooled, I topped the cookies with a little bit of minty frosting (could add an extra festive touch with a drop of green food coloring) and decorated with the mint M&Ms. The frosting helped the M&Ms to stick better, since I had to transport the cookies to work.

Chocolate Mint Cookie Cups

The recipe makes a whole bunch of cookies so it’s also great for a cookie exchange. These cookie cups are super rich and cake-like and were well enjoyed by the crew at work.

Chocolate Mint Cookie Cups

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Chocolate Mint Cookie BitesĀ (adapted from Alida’s Kitchen and Cooking Light Annual Recipes 2009)

Yield: 48 cookies

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature, divided

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2/3 cup packed light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon peppermint extract, divided

2 eggs

1 cup semi-sweet mini chocolate chips

nonstick cooking spray

2 cups powdered sugar

2 tablespoons milk

mint chocolate M&M candies

Directions:

1. Mix together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.

2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream 2 sticks (1 cup) of butter and the granulated and brown sugars until fluffy. Then add in the vanilla and 1/2 teaspoon of peppermint extract. Add in the eggs one at a time, and beat after each addition.

3. Add the dry ingredients gradually to the the mixing bowl, beating on low until just combined. The dough will be thick. Add in the mini chocolate chips.

4. Refrigerate the cookie dough for at least 30 minutes.

5. Preheat the oven to 350F and grease a mini-muffin pan with nonstick spray.

6. Divide the dough into 48 pieces and roll into balls. Place one ball into each muffin cup.

7. Bake for 9-11 minutes until the cookies are cooked through. Let cool for at least 5 minutes before carefully removing from the muffin tin.

8. While they are cooling prepare the frosting by combining the powdered sugar, 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) of melted butter, 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract, and the milk in a small bowl.

9. Once the cookie cups are cooled, spread with frosting and decorate with M&Ms.

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