Christmas Sweets

I'd forgotten how busy Christmas preparations can be, but it all pays off today!  I have three great recipes for you to try:  Homemade Apple Cider, Snowflake Sugar Cookies, and Pumpkin Bread.

You can find the recipe here.  It is pretty straight forward.  The only issue I ran into was I do not own a cheesecloth, so I just strained it.

1 1/2 cups butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
5 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
wax paper, rolling pin, and straws
powdered sugar
  1. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt.  Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until smooth.
  3. Beat in eggs and vanilla.
  4. Cover and chill dough for at least 1 hour (best if overnight)
  5. Roll dough out between two sheets of wax paper.
  6. Cut out cookies with desired cookie cutters.
  7. Take a straw and dot the surface of the cookie.  It helps to use a bit of a twist to remove the dough.
  8. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
  9. Bake at 400 F for 6 to 8 minutes.
  10. Let cool.  Sprinkle powder sugar on top and serve.
The great thing about these cookies is you can design them however you want: random, structured, or even alphabet (see picture at top). 

2 cups unsifted all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 cups sugar
3/4 cups butter, softened
2 eggs
1 can (1 lb) pumpkin
  1. Lightly grease four small loaf pans.
  2. Preheat oven to 325 F.
  3. Sift flour with salt, baking powder, soda, and spices. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, cream sugar and butter until smooth.
  5. Add eggs.  Beat until light and fluffly.
  6. Add pumpkin.
  7. Gradually add the dry ingredients.
  8. Pour batter into pans.
  9. Bake 1 hour.
Enjoy! And Merry Christmas!

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