cookies

M&M Cookie Sticks

cookie-sticks

My son Talal really wanted to make some cookies with M&Ms earlier this week so I thought it would be fun to make a stick cookie instead of the traditional round one. These are so much prettier and they are much easier to dunk into your milk. You could use about any candy that you would like on to or even chocolate chips if you want. I found that it is better to gently cut while they are still warm so that it is not hard when they cool completely and can break.

1/2 cup sunflower oil
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup mini m&ms

1. Pre-heat oven to 375F. In a large mixing bowl add oil, sugar, eggs and vanilla. Mix well with a hand mixer then add flour, baking soda and salt, gradually add sugar mixture.

2. On a non-stick baking mat or greased baking sheet carefully make dough flat the width of the baking sheet with a inch or two of room left of the long side so you have one long rectangle. Sprinkle M&Ms on top and gently press down into dough.

3. Bake for about 15 minutes (until sides are golden). Cool for 5 minutes then carefully cut with a sharp knife once lengthwise and then several from the other side. Allow to completely cool.

Yields: 2 dozen

Easy Nutella Cookies

nutella-cookies

Last night my son was talking about wanting nutella and cookies so I did a quick search and found this recipe floating all over Pinterest which. I am not sure who the original recipe came from but it’s a pretty good one. The only thing I changed was that I used milk instead of water. They were so simple to make and delicious. I prefer them the next day when they have hardened a bit. I also think these would taste great with a scoop of peanut butter added to the mix if you like peanut butter that is.

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cups nutella
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup milk

1. Pre-heat oven to 350F. In a mixing bowl add sugar and egg, mix. Add nutella, flour and a bit of milk at a time mixing with a hand help mixer. Until a thick dough consistency (not too thick) has formed.

2. On a baking sheet with a non-stick baking mat or on parchment paper place 1 dozen heaps of dough (lines of 4). And bake for 13 minutes.

3. Place cookies on a wire rack to cool.

Yields: 2 dozen cookies

Pepparkakor

pepparkakor

Finnish-pepparkakor

Pepparkakor are popular Scandinavian cookies. They are usually cut out with pig or goat cutters throughout Finland and Sweden. I did not have either so I used an old fashion gingerbread man cutter that my mom sent me. These cookies are much more than thin and crisp compared to regular gingerbread cookies and honestly although they seem simple without all the frosting and such they do not need it all and are much better. I made quite a bit and they were gone in a days’ time. My picky five year old even declared them his new favorite cookie.

1/2 cup unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
1-1/2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer cream together the butter, sugar, corn syrup, egg, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, allspice and cloves until smooth.

2. Stir in the flour.

3. Scrape out the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and flatten into a disk, using the wrap, not your fingers.

4. Wrap and chill for 30 minutes.

5. Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with a nonstick baking mat or parchment paper.

6. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough 1/8 inch thick. Using a cutters cut into desired shapes. Space each cookie 1 inch apart.

7. Bake the cookies for 10 minutes or until golden. Transfer to racks to cool.

Yields: 2 dozen

Bethitha

I have wanted to try these cookies out for a while now and finally attempted them for Eid. I have come across quite a bit of Arabic recipes that involve cooking flour before using and the reason behind that is many Bedouins would cook the flour over the fire and use in recipes (ones that did not involve ovens) so even though they may not be baked the flour is still getting cooked. It can take a bit for the flour to turn lightly brown it did for me anyway on my electric stove. If you’re not sure just wait the flour will brown but be careful not to burn.

The types of molds you use are the wooden mammoul molds. They are quite handy and the cookie easily slips out of the mold. I have two versions and in the Middle East they decorate each mold with the same garnish since typically they use one mold for one flavor. These were really good and almost finished before Eid day even got here so I was really happy with the outcome.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup chopped dates
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup clarified butter
Powdered sugar and unsweetened cocoa powder for garnish

1.In a sauté pan on medium high heat add the flour stirring constantly until golden.

2. Sift the cooked flour into a large mixing bowl the add dates, cardamom, cinnamon and ginger, mix. Add butter then knead with hands until smooth and well combined.

3. Shape the dough into small balls the size of walnuts then carefully press the balls into the wooden molds, the tap out and place on cutting board or wax paper (large work surface).

4.  Sprinkle cocoa powder on half of cookies and powdered sugar on the rest.

Yields: approximately 15-20 cookies

Slightly adapted from sweets of arabia

(cookie molds plus cutters used for the pistachio Eid Cookies)
*Today, Saudi Arabia is the second largest producer of dates in the world.