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Christmas Cookies

on: 15 December 2014

So I decided to bake today… and true to fridge form I was without eggs at the time I settled on this bright idea. Never discouraged, I thought to myself “there’s got to be a decent egg-less cookie recipe out there,” so I turned to Google for help. As I assembled the ingredients listed in the “Edible Egg-less Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough” recipe, I noticed an absence of any leavening agent. No worries though, I just added some baking powder. I even preheated the oven to 350 degrees - mom would be so proud. In fact, I didn’t have to consult the directions at all - between my mom and Alton Brown, the basic technique for cookie assembly has taken up permanent residence in my mind. That is until it came time to set the timer… 

Candied Orange Peel

in Recipes
on: 18 August 2014

Candied Oranges

6 Medium Oranges 
Cold Water
2 cups sugar
½ cup water

Using the point of a sharp knife cut the peels of the oranges into quarters. Using the bowl of a spoon, loosen the peel from the pulp and membrane of the fruit, leaving the white pith attached to the peel. Place the fruit peel in a 2½-quart nonmetal bowl. Add enough water to the bowl to cover the fruit peel. Weight the peel down with a plate, if necessary, to keep the peel under the water. Let the fruit peel stand overnight weighted down in the cold water.

Drain the fruit peel; rinse it thoroughly in cold water. Place the fruit peel in a 2-quart saucepan. Cover the fruit peel in fresh cold water and heat to boiling. Remove the saucepan from heat; let it stand 10 minutes. Drain fruit peel. Repeat the boiling and standing process 3 more times. (This helps remove the bitter taste from the peel.) After draining the fruit peel for the last time, let it stand until thoroughly cooled.

With kitchen scissors, cut the cooled fruit peel into strips about ¼ inch wide. In a saucepan combine the 2 cups sugar and ½ cup water. Cook over medium high heat to boiling, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon to dissolve sugar. This should take 5 to 7 minutes. Carefully add the fruit peel strips to the saucepan. Cook over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, till fruit peel is translucent and most of the liquid is absorbed. Mixture should boil at a moderate, steady rate over the entire surface. This should take 25 to 30 minutes.

Drain the fruit peel thoroughly; cool to lukewarm. While peel is still slightly sticky, roll it in the additional sugar to coat. Place coated fruit peel on a wire rack for 1 to 2 hours or till dry. Store tightly covered.

Chocolate Coating

1 cup nestle semi sweet morsels
1 tablespoon vegetable shortening

Melt the chips and shortening in the microwave until melted do not over nuke. Stir after each 40 seconds. After drying the candied fruit peels thoroughly, hold a peel by one end and dip it into melted chocolate. Place the dipped peels on waxed paper and let them stand until the chocolate is dry.

Cream Cheese Mints

in Recipes
on: 18 August 2014
3-oz. Package cream cheese, at room temperature
2½ cups confectioners’ sugar
Lorann Flavoring
Food Coloring
Granulated sugar

Mix cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar together. I recommend using a fork. Start with 4 drops of flavoring, and then carefully add flavoring and color as desired. The oil is strong, which is what makes it tasty, but you need to go carefully. 

Knead until it's got the consistency of pie dough. Add sugar to make softer or decrease sugar for a firmer consistency. Take small pinch and roll into a ball in granulated sugar. Press into mold, remove excess and unmold at once onto waxed paper.

Makes 40 to 50 pieces.

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Erin Wilson is the author and publisher of the Sapient Salesman

A "sapient salesman"?

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