Saturday, December 29, 2012

Cranberry Pistachio Cookies

This recipe popped out at me when I was flipping through one of our local grocery store flyer's.
We all make sugar cookies and short breads for the holidays (ok, not EVERYONE does) but I just loved the addition of pistachios and cranberries.  Festive no?
Then I realized they are rolled in coconut as well, like snowflakes :)


They were so tasty that I even brought the recipe to work and we started making them for the customers there too!

I didn't embellish this recipe at all, wait, I did, I didn't have coconut extract so I increased the vanilla by 1/2 tbsp.
I think I'll take some time and tweak it a little the next go round but until such time I really encourage you to try these just as they are!

Here's the recipe from Sobey's:

1 c. room temperature butter
1 c. sugar
1 1/2 tbsp pure vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg, room temperature
2 1/2 c. flour
3/4 c. flaked sweetened coconut, divided
1/2 c. dried cranberries, chopped
1/2 c. pistachios, chopped
I your stand mixer, cream together butter, sugar, vanilla and salt until smooth. Scrape down sides of bowl, add egg and mix well.
Slowly add flour, coconut, cranberries and pistachios.
Divide dough in half and, using a piece of parchment paper, roll dough into logs about 1 1/2-in. thick and 16-in. long. Roll each log in 2 tbsp of the remaining coconut, lightly coating outside of dough. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 30 min.
Preheat oven to 350F .
Use parchment paper to line baking sheet. Unwrap dough and slice into 1/2-in. thick rounds and place on prepared baking sheet, spaced about 1 in. apart.
Bake on middle rack of oven until firm, but not golden, about 12 min. Remove from oven, transfer cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely
They don't spread so if you want a larger cookie make your logs larger in circumference.
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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Blueberry Cream Cheese French Toast Bake

We have a tradition on Christmas morning.
We eat a LOT of food at the in laws house.
Certainly no lack of calories consumed on December 25th EVER and it always starts bright and early.

This year I decided to help out the cause by adding a little french toast bake that I like to make in advance and pop in the oven to have a great weekend brekkie (its perfect for hectic Christmas mornings).
Ensuring to make a small portion as we have other breakfast options this meal is great for 4 or 8!

You will need:
1 crusty baguette
1 1/2 c. half and half cream
1/2 c. 1% milk
couple teaspoons brown sugar
8 eggs
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 c. maple syrup
2 c. fresh blueberries
1 pkg. cream cheese, cubed

Cut your baguette into cubes.  Mix the cream, eggs, milk and cinnamon together with the maple syrup.
Using a 9x9 dish make sure to butter it on all sides.  Place half of the bread on the bottom, dot with half the cream cheese cubes and half of the blueberries.
Pour half of the egg mixture on top.  I like to push down the bread to soak in before starting with the next layer.
Put a layer of tin foil over top and place in the refrigerator overnight.
Preheat your oven to 350F and bake for about 45min - 1 hour.
You will know when its done when it puffs up and is set in the middle.

Enjoy!!  Serve with maple syrup or blueberry syrup!

We listened to:  Rod Stewart's Merry Christmas Baby CD while enjoying our meal :)

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