Derby Cookies, Buttery Brown Sugar Bourbon Walnut Balls

IMG_4948Lately, I’ve been working through recipes that are easy to take to work and share.  Everyone at my office has been working long hours, and having a nice treat on a Monday seems like a good idea to me. As much as I am looking forward to making the scheduled Blood Orange Tiramisu someday, it’s not the most portable dessert.

These little Derby Cookies were awesome. The cookies were soft, but the sugar on the outside gave a great crunch and a punch of whisky flavor. Rolling in raw sugar is something I want to try with other cookie recipes. I’d love to make these again, but I think I’d try it with pecans instead of walnuts, but that’s just my preference. 
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Date Squares

IMG_2973Date Squares are delicious! I wasn’t sure what to expect from these, I thought they would be a bit like fig newtons. Then my husband wandered into the kitchen and said “Do you remember when we were in college and my grandma sent us a box of date bars, and we couldn’t stop eating them?”

“Wait, those were date bars? Those were awesome!”

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These are really easy to make, and other than the dates, only require basic kitchen staples. Chopping up a pound of dates is a bit of a tiresome, sticky, mess, but I found it’s not so bad if combined with a singalong to Mariah Carey’s Christmas album. Tis the season and all that. I used my kitchen shears to pit and mangle the dates into tiny pieces, which seemed like it would be a lot easier than using a knife.

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I think these might become a holiday staple in our house, I would make them again. Definitley if I can find already chopped dates!

Campfire Cookies

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Campfire cookies are a bit like combing chocolate chip cookies and s’mores. The result is not quite as good as either of those things, but still rather tasty. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the addition of marshmallows, that was the part I was sure I wasn’t going to be crazy about. The texture was a bit dry and sandy, but didn’t hurt the overall flavor of this cookie.

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The dough was a bit dry too, but scooped out alright after some time in the fridge. I ended up using cinnamon sugar graham crackers, as that is what I had in my pantry, and I think it made them really sweet. I wouldn’t recommended using them.

I brought these to a friend’s Halloween party a few weeks ago. I love the name Campfire Cookies, but people tended to look at me blankly when I called them that, so I just went with “It’s a S’more cookie.”

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Overall it’s a nice spin on a chocolate chip cookie, but chocolate chip cookies are perfection so I don’t know if I’d make these again. I might start adding marshmallows to other cookie recipes though.

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Happy Thanksgiving!
Baked Sunday Mornings

Pumpkin Harvest Dunking Cookies

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Pumpkin Harvest Dunking Cookies – Simple, easy and delicious. These are a basic drop cookie, loaded with oats, dried fruit and spices. I used cinnamon and white chocolate chips, and added cinnamon to the glaze on top. I didn’t have enough pumpkin to make a full cup, so I added a banana to make up the difference. I think you could easily modify these cookies, using banana or apple sauce if that’s what you have on hand instead of pumpkin. IMG_2911 IMG_2924 1

I would make these again, they are so easy! And a perfect treat if you are craving fall spices. I don’t think they would hold up very well to dunking, as they are very soft and moist. IMG_2912
Baked Sunday Mornings

Candy Bar Cookies

cookiesSo this week, Candy Bar Cookies. The basic idea is to wrap chocolate cookie dough around a smooshed bit of candy bar, and then add an artful topping of more chocolate and sprinkles. (I went for the Jackson Pollock technique in my white chocolate application.)

The good news is that these were really tasty, and my co-workers really liked them! The bad news, these were a disaster to make. I heard warning bells right off the bat when I read the instructions and saw “the dough will look sandy.” That usually ends well.

I was hopeful that the hour spent chilling would help the dough stick together a bit more, but alas, it was not to be. My attempts at rolling and cutting the dough into well ordered circles was quickly abandoned for the much better technique of grab, smoosh and roll.  I committed wholeheartedly to making a mess out of myself and my kitchen, and thankfully, unlike many baking experiments where you abandon a good portion of the recipe, it worked out just fine.

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The recipe suggested using miniature Peanut Butter Cups, Mounds Bars, Rolos and Three Musketeers. I went with a mix of Snickers, Caramel Milky Ways, Mounds and Three Musketeers. By far the most delicious result was the Mounds. Something about the coconut texture and the dark chocolate just worked amazingly well.  The other three were just overly sweet, and ones including caramel resulted in more caramel melted outside of the cookie than inside.

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I don’t know if I would make these again. I do like having smaller cookies to take to the office, and they are a fun treat. However, it was tedious assembling everything together.