Thursday, 26 September 2013

It's beginning to look a lot like...

Christmas? Ok, Maybe not. Although it's officially fall, it managed to reach a balmy (feels like) 21 degrees yesterday - exactly three months (91 days) until Christmas. And maybe for the average person, Christmas is the last thing on their mind but it's slowly and not-so-subtly becoming a staple in mine.

My boss' daughters' elementary school is selling chocolates to raise money for a playground they hope to build. This means that my co-workers and I are subject to mint meltaways, milk chocolate crisps, and chocolate covered raisins - torn between not wanting to eat anymore junk, wanting to support a good cause, and being annoyed that there are no peanut options (it's in your best interests to not get me started on this topic).

With two boxes of mint meltaways left earlier this week, I thought I would do a charitable thing and buy them to bake into some sort of goodie for the office. My boss is the one that suggested I make Christmas cookies to celebrate this milestone in the year. And with the blessings of two other co-workers, I set about looking for recipes (I thought it would be smart to check if I was crossing a line - some people are not to kindly towards early Christmas celebrations).

I was inspired by this recipe for a chocolate cookie and this recipe to incorporate the chocolate mint. Both recipes, apparently, made 54 cookies. So I halved the recipe thinking I'd end up with at least 24.

- 1 cup flour (whole wheat)
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1 cup hot chocolate mix (or see original recipe for proper cocoa to sugar ratio)

- 1/2 cup margarine
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla

- crushed candy cane
- white sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the dry ingredients. Beat the wet ingredients (used my hand mixer), then slowly add the dry mixture to the wet mixture while blending. It becomes pretty thick and will stick together when you roll it into a ball but won't stick to your hands which is a small baking miracle.

I thought I'd be able to get 24 balls, really, I only got 16. How small did the Hershey people make their cookies to yield 54!?

I placed them all on a silicone baking sheet on top of a regular cookie sheet (you could use parchment paper or just grease a regular cookie sheet).

Bake them for 8 minutes. When done, take them out and immediately press a chocolate into each cookie. The cookie will crack but you can mold it back around the chocolate - or just leave it cracked. The chocolate will start to melt into the cookie. Once that's done, top with crushed candy cane and sprinkle some extra white sugar on as well if you'd like.

All chocolates pressed in and toppings being added

i <3 clipart

there is little in life that would make me happier than McDonald's breakfast and a Christmas cookie.

Happy 3-months-'til-Boxing Day!

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