20 December 2008

Russian tea cakes

from Epicurious.com

2 1/4 c all purpose flour
1/4 t salt
1 c butter, room temperature
1/2 c powdered sugar
1 t vanilla extract
3/4 c finely chopped husked hazelnuts, toasted
powdered sugar for rolling

Sift flour and salt together. using electric mixer, cream butter in large bowl until light. Gradually add 1/2 c powdered sugar and beat until fluffy. Add vanilla. Mix in dry ingredients in three batches. Mix in hazelnuts. Refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 12 hours.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Form dough into 1" balls. Space 1" apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake until just firm to the touch, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a rack and cool slightly. Roll in powdered sugar. Cool completely. Roll cookies in powdered sugar again. Store in airtight container for at least a few days.

19 December 2008

cranberry orange oatmeal cookies

adapted from several similar recipes to suit our tastes

1 3/4 c all purpose flour
1 t baking soda
1 t baking powder
3/4 t salt
2 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t ground nutmeg
1/2 t ground cloves
6 T unsalted butter, room temperature
10 T vegetable shortening (preferably Crisco butter flavor), room temperature
3/4 c sugar
3/4 c firmly packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 t vanilla extract
1/4 t orange oil
1 1/3 c old-fashioned oats (not quick cooking)
1 1/2 c dried cranberries, chopped

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease two light colored baking sheets.

Stir dry ingredients in small bowl to blend. Using electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat butter and sugars in large bowl until blended and smooth, about 1 minute. Add egg, vanilla, and orange oil, and mix thoroughly. Stir in flour mixture and just incorporated, then stir in oatmeal an cranberries.

Using a tablespoon or a #50 disher, drop dough onto sheet. Bake until tops and bottoms are lightly golden, rotating baking sheets, front to back and top to bottom halfway through baking to ensure even browning, about 10-13 minutes. Cool cookies on baking sheets 5 minutes. Transfer to racks to cool completely.

Will keep for several days in airtight container. Should freeze well.