Monday, December 30, 2013

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap - Part 2

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2013

This year's food blogger cookie swap was amazing!  We partnered up with four different companies - OXO, Dixie Crystals Sugar, Grandma's Molasses, and Gold Medal Flour, all of whom matched our contributions - to donate money to Cookies for Kids Cancer and we raised over $13K!!  Can you believe that?  And this was from each blogger submitting only $4 each.  All because of cookies!  Cookies and a good cause?  You can't get much better than that!

My matches to receive cookies were:
The Cake Merchant
Kelly and Austin
Babcakes Bakery

I really hope everyone enjoyed the Apple Snickerdoodles I sent them!

And the folks who sent me some seriously good cookies were:
Chocolate Snickerdoodles from Sweet Lavender Bake Shop
how friggin CUTE are these packages??  
These were my favorite.  I mean - chocolate.  How can you go wrong?

Speculoo Buttons from She Runs, She Eats
These were so yummy!  Like a super-sweet gingersnaps.  I'm not the biggest fan of ginger flavors but I gobbled these up!

White Chocolate Dipped Gingersnaps from Julie's Eats and Treats
These were my husband's favorite.  He is a huge fan of gingersnaps so he was excited when we opened this box!

A big THANK YOU to Julie from The Little Kitchen and Lindsay from Love and Olive Oil for hosting the cookie swap again this year and we'll see you next year!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap - Apple Snickerdoodles

It's that time of year again!  Time fooooooooooooooor...........
The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2013

Yes!  Woohoo!  (Pardon me while I do my happy dance with my cookies.)  I send out three sets of delicious cookies and I receive three different sets of cookies!  I knew very early on this year that THESE cookies were the ones I was going to send off.  They were so different and yet so... homey.  Everyone loves snickerdoodles.  Most people love apples.  How no one managed to combine these together until now is beyond me.  I even neglected posting this recipe countless times because if I did, that meant I couldn't send off these cookies.  And we couldn't have that, now could we?  I really hope that everyone I sent these cookies to enjoyed them as much as I did!  (And my husband, who requested me to make a second batch for himself because the batch I made to send off made exactly 36 cookies.)

Note:  This recipe requires you to use boiled cider (available here).  It is absolutely one of my favorite ingredients ever!  It allows you to give a hint of apple flavor to your baked goods without actually having apples in them.

Apple Snickerdoodles
adapted slightly from King Arthur Flour’s Baking Sheet

¾ c. Vegetable Shortening
¼ c. (½ stick) Unsalted Butter, softened
1 ½ c. Sugar
1 Egg (large)
¼ c. Boiled Cider
2 tsp. Baking Powder
½ tsp. Salt
2 ¾ c. All Purpose Flour

Spiced Sugar Coating:
2 tsp. Baking Spice
½ c. Sugar

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
In a small bowl, mix both ingredients of your sugar coating and set aside.
Using a stand mixer, beat the shortening, butter, and sugar together until smooth.
Add in your egg, beating until smooth.
Mix in the boiled cider, baking powder, and salt.
Finally, add in your flour, mixing until combined.  (This batter is THICK!)
Using a tablespoon of dough, round the dough with your hands and then coat in your spiced sugar mixture.
Place them on a non-stick cookie sheet (or one that’s covered in parchment), leaving around 1 ½” between them.
Dip the bottom of a glass in the spiced sugar mixture and press each cookie down gently until they are around ½” thick.
Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until lightly golden.
Allow them to cool on a rack.
Eat and Enjoy!!