A Sweet Treat: Apricot Jam Cookies

cookiesheart

Do you get tired of chocolates and candy by the time Valentine’s Day rolls around? If yes, then we have one thing in common because why wait for one specific date to eat them when you can treat yourself all year long! If that’s the case and you’re ready to try something new, then these apricot jam cookies will be just right for the occasion. They are ideal for your sweetheart, wonderful co-workers, un-noisy neighbours, and just about everyone else who deserves a little something sweet.

To make your very own batch, see below for all you need to know!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter (softened, room temperature)
2/3 cup white sugar
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 pinch of salt
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract1/4 cup apricot jam
2 tablespoons icing sugar

cookiesprep

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the softened butter and sugar. Mix until well incorporated and sugar is no longer grainy.
  3. Add in the egg and vanilla essence, beating the ingredients together.
  4. Sift in the cup of flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix until dough is formed.
  5. Refrigerate for an hour, then cut into sections and roll flat.
  6. Use a heart-shaped cookie cutter to make 1/4 inch-thick cookies. Use a smaller heart-shaped cutter to make a hole in the middle of half your batch.
  7. Place on baking sheet 1/2 inch apart and bake for approximately 8 minutes.
  8. Let cool completely. Spoon a teaspoon of jam onto the centre of each (whole) bottom half, and sprinkle sugar onto the heart-cutout part. Stick the two together, and bite in!

There you have it, ready to eat in no time! With the tangy goodness of apricots and sweet taste of icing sugar, these cookies are guaranteed to be your jam.

 

Chocolate Glazed Coconut-Pineapple Macaroons

macaroons

Sometimes, we all need a little something sweet. So why not treat yourself to a home-baked batch of coconut/pineapple macaroons? This crunchy-on-the-outside, chewy-on-the-inside snack will not only make your kitchen smell like a tropical paradise, but will taste like it too!

Ingredients (makes 2 dozen):

2 cups unsweetened dessicated coconut

1/2 cup diced dried pineapple

2 egg whites

2 tsp vanilla essence

1/2 cup white sugar

1 1/2 tsp white flour

Baking:

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit

2. Beat the egg whites until fluffy, then add the sugar, flour, and vanilla essence, and keep stirring until dissolved and the mixture regains its thicker consistency.

3. Combine with the coconut and diced dried pineapple, mix well.

4. Scoop up the batter with a spoon, forming little mounds. Slide off and onto a baking sheet about 1-2 inches apart.

5. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Let cool on a cookie rack.

For the glaze: 2 tbsp unsalted butter

2 tbsp white sugar

4 tsp cocoa powder

In a small pot, combine all the ingredients and let them melt. Stir frequently  and let cool for 5 minutes. Then, drizzle lightly with a spoon over the already cooled macaroons!

Style(and flavour) is served!

 

Almond Shortbread Cookies

Shortbreadcookies

From afternoon tea parties to swanky dinners, shortbread cookies are always in style! Why? Well, it must be because you can do pretty much whatever your imagination desires with them. Round shaped with sprinkles, heart shaped with icing –and that’s only the decorating. But for those who choose the more subtle side of things, just change the flavoring. Toss in some almond essence for a sophisticated alternative, here’s how:

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cup butter

2 cups flour

3/4 cup icing sugar

1/2 cup ground almonds

1 tsp almond essence

Pinch of salt

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Directions:

1. Preheat the oven at 350 Fahrenheit

2. Mix the sifted flour with the ground almonds, and the pinch of salt. In a separate bowl, mix the softened butter until smooth and add the sugar. Continue mixing.

3. Add the almond essence to the butter-sugar concoction until fully incorporated. Slowly add the flour mix and form your dough.

4. Roll the dough and cut it using whatever shape you choose. Stick them into the oven for about 10 minutes.

Style is served!

 

Care for some Orange-Almond Cranberry Clusters?

Orange-almond cran clusters

I’m not going to lie, these cookies turned out to be pretty good! No no, they’re actually GREAT and all because I couldn’t find the bag of golden raisins in the cupboard. That’s right, I was going to make raisin cookies. You read it correctly –r-a-i-s-i-n-s. The tiny little things that try to pass for chocolate chips but when you take a bite, it’s more often than not a bite of disappointment.  We all know how the saying goes: “raisin cookies are the reason I have trust issues”.

So anyway, it was time to improvise: what did I happen to have at home? Dried cranberries? Check. Almond slivers? Check. Oranges, sugar, vanilla essence? Check, check, and check! I mixed these together and popped spoonfuls into the oven, only to have the house fill with the scent of citrusy goodness –ah, the smell of success!

These clusters flew off the plate, and were equally popular with friends at school. After bringing some to lecture, this is the text message from one of the taste testers(and I quote):

“OMG THESE COOKIES THOUGHHH. So delicious!!! :’(“

But enough with the bragging! Here’s how to make your very own batch:

2 cups of flour

2 teaspoons of baking powder

1/4 teaspoon of salt

1 cup of sugar

170 grams of unsalted, softened butter

1 large egg

1/4 cup of milk

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

3/4 cup of dried cranberries

1 cup of toasted(optional) almond slivers

Grated peel of 1 orange

Almonds

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Farenheit
  2. OPTIONAL: Spread the almonds evenly on a pan on the stovetop over medium heat, and let them toast until they turn a light golden brown(5-6 minutes), while mixing frequently with a spatula. Toasting them adds an extra bit of flavour rather than when they’re raw.
  3. In a bowl, mix all the dry ingredients: the flour, with the baking powder, and salt. I usually sift the flower into the bowl to get rid of any lumps
  4. Then add the sugar and stir, followed by the softened butter, egg, and milk. Mix all of these together (either by hand with a spoon, or the a food processor)  until the dough is smooth
  5. Add the cranberries and almonds into the mix until fully incorporated, along with the grated peel of the orange
  6. Place spoonfuls into a greased or parchment covered baking pan about  2 inches apart and flatten them
  7. Bake  for 10-12 minutes (or longer, or less -baking time depends on your oven so just keep an eye on them)

Try these cranberry-almond orange clusters, you won’t be disappointed.

Style is served!