After making all my favorite cookies for Christmas, I was at a loss for what to try next. So I did what bored kids all around America do every day after school—stood in front of my open kitchen cabinets and refrigerator until something popped out at me. I certainly wasn’t going to the grocery store to pick up any ingredients, so I had to make do with what I had. And what I had was oats and raisins, leftover from various baking adventures last fall. Might as well use them before they expire.
The first time I used a pastry bag was when making cream cheese spritzes with my dad when I was little. He always makes them at Christmas. I started making them in recent years too, out of necessity (I live too far away from my dad now to continuously eat the spritzes he makes all through December). These spritzes are light in texture, fun and festive! You can decorate them with any sprinkles of your choosing or no sprinkles at all (but who doesn’t like sprinkles?!)
Four years ago I didn’t know what a rainbow cookie was. Scratch that. I had seen these rainbow cookies before, not knowing what they were called. I didn’t like them though (or I assumed I didn’t) because they have jam in them. To me, jam belongs on sandwiches, not in cookies. Chocolate belongs in cookies. Duh. But I enjoy spending the time to make rainbow cookies, because I know other people like them.
Peanut butter cup blossoms are one of my all-time favorite cookies. My mom always made the best (softest!) peanut butter blossoms with Hershey’s kisses. But every time I tried to make them, they came out hard—never as good as mom’s. Several years ago my mom started making these peanut butter cup blossoms, and I was in love. She gave me the recipe and I’ve been making them ever since. They are a family favorite!
These cutouts are softer than your usual cutouts, but they aren’t flimsy. They can withstand any frosting and decorations you add to them. They taste great too! I usually make the actual cookies ahead of time, freeze them for a week or 4, then take out what I need and decorate only those cookies. That way I always have a supply of cutout cookies in the freezer, ready to be frosted and decorated for any holiday gathering that might come up. They are super-easy to decorate straight from the freezer—no worries about breaking the cookies. But they are also sturdy enough to decorate without freezing.
The first time I had funfetti cookies was on Easter around 5 years ago. That year, we invited our friends Sara and Jordan over for Easter dinner. I made lasagna and all the fixings, and Sara brought dessert, introducing me to funfetti cookies for the first time! We all know I love cake. And frosting. And now I can have cake and frosting packaged in a neat little cookie that I can make in less than an hour. I am forever in your debt, Sara!
If there is one cookie that comes to mind when people think of me, it would be the chocolate chip cookie. It is my signature cookie. I’ve had this recipe memorized since I was a teenager. (Don’t ask me what I wore yesterday–that I cannot recall.) Looking back, I think I made chocolate chip cookies once a week in high school.