Thursday, December 9, 2010

Easy Cookies

My occupation has become very demanding and I am not finding energy for my usual holiday baking.
Here are a couple of short cut cookies I plan to make. They make small batches. I have a small household and don't want a lot of leftovers after the guests have gone home.

I use 17.5 oz. packages of sugar cookie mix and follow the directions on the package for cut out cookies. I then frost and decorate them. That's the fun part of cut outs and the flavor of the mix is just fine.

I'll make a batch of this easy frosting this weekend. It will keep in the refrigerator for about 3 months. I'll use a lot for Christmas but have enough for cookies for Super Bowl party and for Valentine's Day cookies.

2 cup shortening
1/2 cup dry non dairy creamer
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
32 oz. confectioner's sugar
1/2 to 3/4 cups water

In a large mixing bowl beat shortening, dry creamer and vanilla. Gradually beat in sugar. Add enough water until frosting has the desired consistency. Store in the refrigerator. Bring the amount needed for your batch of cookies to room temperature. This spreads easier at room temperature. Food coloring can be added to the batch before spreading. Holiday colored sprinkles stick well to this frosting.

I use a 17.5 oz package of sugar cookie mix prepared according to the package directions. At the end I stir in 2 teaspoons lemon extract and 1 cup chopped pecans. I then bake them according to package directions for drop cookies.

These are fun red and green cookies:
3/4 cup butter
1, 4 oz. package pistachio instant pudding mix.
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup shelled pistachios or chopped almonds
Candied red cherries cut in half

Preheat oven to 375 F. In a small mixing bowl, cream butter and pudding mix. Stir in flour. Fold in nuts. Roll into 1 1/2 inch balls. Place balls 2 inches apart on a greased baking sheet. Flatten to 1/2 inch with bottom of a greased drinking glass. Press a cherry half in the middle of each. Bake 10 to 13 minutes until lightly browned on the edge. Remove to a wire rack or brown paper sacking to cool. Makes 2 dozen.

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