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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Apple Spice Cookies

Happy New Year! Hope you had a great holiday season. It's nice to be back with new recipes for 2011.

Last weekend we took a trip up to Prescott Valley, AZ to visit family. It's still strange for me to see so much snow since I'm from South Carolina. This weekend turned out to be quite cold - it didn't get above freezing until we were leaving on Sunday and even then there was another snow storm moving into the area. Although it didn't snow while we were there, several inches had fallen the night before we arrived and it was quite snowy and icy. Still, the scenery was beautiful despite the cold wreaking havoc with my various bone problems.

Our last day in Prescott Valley we took the nieces and nephews shopping and out to lunch. We decided to let them choose the place to eat. That proved to be quite an ordeal and I have to relate part of the conversation that turned out to be hilarious...

Michael: Max, have you ever eaten at an Indian restaurant?
Max: No, what kind of food do they have?
Peter: Indian Food.
Max: Like what? Cowboy?

The rest of the outing continued in a similar vein and it's been a long time since I laughed so much. We finally ended up at a family style restaurant called Zeke's Eatin' Place which turned out to be fairly good. By the way, if you are in Prescott Valley and need a great place to stay, check out the Hampton Inn. We were so pleased with our accommodations there and really enjoyed the hot and cold continental breakfast buffet each morning (our niece Katie is in charge of it).

It's nice to be home though and back to some baking. This week I decided to try my own original recipe for Apple Spice Cookies.

These turned out very nicely. The cookies are soft and flavorful with hits of apple flavor alongside cinnamon and allspice. I topped them with just a bit of royal icing, but you could use nearly anything as an icing or glaze (I also found they're superb plain.) This dough does need to be chilled before you scoop it out. For the apple cider it is best to use a dark opaque cider (often found at organic/natural food grocers) rather than the light, golden colored cider. The darker cider gives a much better flavor to the cookie.

So, Happy New Year and best wishes for a flavorful and fun 2011!

Recipe: Apple Spice Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup shortening, softened
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. allspice
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup apple cider

Instructions

  1. In bowl of electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream together shortening and sugars until light a fluffy. Mix in eggs until combined. Add dry ingredients and mix together. Pour in cider and mix until dough is smooth. Chill for a minimum 3 hours.
  2. Preheat oven to 350°. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Remove dough from refrigerator and scoop by teaspoon (or cookie scoop) onto baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until just browned and risen. Allow to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely. Ice or glaze if desired. Store in airtight container. Makes about 3 dozen cookies.
Prep time: 3 hours
Cook time: 12 min
Total time: 3 hours 12 min
Number of servings (yield): 36 Cookies
Meal type: snack
Culinary tradition: USA (General)
Copyright © Buck Bannister & Sugar Pies.
Recipe by Buck Bannister.

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