Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Day Six

We are handing out cookies as fast as we can. We are not sure if you realize just how many cookies we are drowning in. It is not our usual MO to hand out baked treats to strangers for the holidays, but we have started boxing up and handing out little tins of assorted cookies. Just make sure to return the tin; we have 19 days left.

Today is Russian Teaballs. This is a simple little recipe, uncomplicated and quick, perfect for a rainy night with tutoring and softball catching lessons.

1 cup softened butter
2 cups powdered sugar (approximately. Only 1/2 c. is actually in the cookie)
2 1/4 cup all-pupose flour
1/2 teaspoon flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350. Beat butter and 1/2 cup sugar until fluffy. Mix in flour, salt, vanilla extract and walnuts to form a stiff dough. You could chill the dough at this point if you'd like to make it ahead of time. It might stop the spread - always an issue for us. Roll into balls (smaller the better; ours are too big. Smaller than a walnut, bigger than a pea). Bake 1 1/2 inches apart until the bottoms are golden brown. For us tonight, that was 15 minutes. Darker pans bake faster than lighter plans, and we are using parchment paper to minimize clean-up, but you could just put them on the pan. Remove from cookie sheet immediately and toss in powdered sugar. Cool the cookies in the sugar. Try not to eat them all at once.

This recipe doubles perfectly, and you can even freeze it, pulling it out to be impressive when necessary. Or saving it all for yourself.

Our picture-taking mojo was off a bit this evening; we were rushed, and there even were conversations about cooking two types of cookie tomorrow, quickly nixed, as tomorrow promises to be twice as hectic as tonight.

Rushing caused a minor tragedy with a hot cookie:

In the end, though, things worked out. Isn't that the way?

There was quite a debate over tomorrow's "cookie." One of us argues that it isn't really a cookie, as it is a no-bake bar; the other believes that we can be a bit liberal in our interpretation of "cookie" on nights with two tutoring clients, plus our normal school day, animals to feed and studies to coordinate.

So for Day 7: No-Bake Chocolate Oat Bars, recipe to be announced tomorrow.

(for those of you keeping track, we have used 2 pounds of butter, 2 cups of walnuts, four pounds of cane sugar, one pound of powdered sugar, 3 eggs and five pounds of flour. It is only Day 6. We have reinforced our butter, sugar and flour supply. The chickens are laying plentiful eggs, and we are selecting recipes that don't need them. Go figure.)

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