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How do I celebrate the start of Winter Break?

By baking, of course!  I’ve made three different types of cookies in the past 24 hours, thank you very much.  And none of them turned out badly- yay!  The first was a simple decorated sugar cookie:

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I used a glass to make the round shapes… if you poke a hole into the tops of the cookies before baking , they would make adorable ornaments!  I frosted them white, then dyed the remaining icing pink (supposed to be red… I need gel food coloring) and piped on some designs.  As you can see, this one got smudged, but that’s okay.  It’s the effort that counts, and I dare you to make a better one. 😉

 

Then I used the same sugar cookie recipe to make these checkerboard cookies.  They look fancy, but I promise they’re super easy to make!  Here’s some instructions:

1. Make the cookie dough.  Obviously.  Divide it into 2 equal halves.  Form one half into a log, then flatten the log so it looks like, well, a flat log.  Roll the dough log in wax paper and stick it in the freezer.

2. With the other half of the dough, stir in 2 tablespoons cocoa powder and 1/4 cup melted chocolate chips.  Make a log with this dough, too.  Try to make it equal in size as the other log- go grab the first log from the freezer to make it easier on yourself.  Wrap the dough in wax paper, and freeze it too.  Freeze for 15-20 minutes.

3. Grab both dough logs and slice them in half lengthwise.  The long way.  Hotdog style.  Basically, you want 4 thin logs of dough.  Stack them on top of one another, checkerboard style, and mush them together so they stick.  Wrap the dough in wax paper again, and freeze it for at least 30 minutes.  You could keep it in the freezer for days if you’d like, cutting cookies off whenever you need them.  But I made them all at once.  I’m a bit of a cookie hoarder.

4. Unwrap the frozen dough and slice it up into 1/4-inch pieces.  Use a serrated knife, please!  Place the cookies on a parchment-lined baking sheet.  They don’t spread much, so you can put them pretty close together.

5. Bake the cookies at 350 degrees for 9-11 minutes.  Let them cool on the sheet for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and cool completely.

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And finally, peanut butter balls!  Also called buckeyes.  These are delicious and secret.  🙂

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Happy weekend before Christmas, everyone! ❤

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