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December 07, 2017

PISTACHIO CHOCOLATE CHIP SNOWBALL COOKIES

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Buttery Pistachio Chocolate Chip Snowball Cookies are adorable and easy to make. They are great for cookie swaps and gift baskets. Add these to your holiday baking list this year.

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My boss is an incredible baker. She cranks out an unbelievable amount of baked goods each Christmas/holiday season to give to the various departments we work with at the hospital. Last year, I had the pleasure of helping her make some of the treats. Although we are scaling down on the baking this year, I am tasked with putting together a couple of goodie baskets. 

I wanted to incorporate a new recipe to the mix. It had to be easy to make, look semi-festive, and need no refrigeration. Snowball cookies fit the bill perfectly. They are light and cheery, can sit out at room temperature, and require little effort to make.



These snowball cookies are buttery with a soft, crumbly texture. The addition of pistachio pudding mix gives the dough flavor and a lovely shade of minty green. Mini chocolate chips add texture and sweetness to the not-overly sweet cookie. And finally, a snowball cookie is not a snowball cookie without a coating of snow white powdered sugar, which imparts sweetness and gives it an ethereal look.




These cookies are so versatile. Change flavor simply by changing the pudding mix flavor. How about chocolate fudge, banana, lemon, cookies and cream, or strawberry snowball cookies? Swap out chocolate chips for walnuts, pecans, almonds, sprinkles...so many options. You can make a different flavored snowball cookie for each day of the week without breaking a sweat. Give this recipe a try and have fun with it!




PISTACHIO CHOCOLATE CHIP SNOWBALL COOKIES



INGREDIENTS:

3/4 cup butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 pkg. (3.9 oz.) pistachio pudding mix
1/4 scant tsp. almond extract
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup semi-sweet mini chocolate chips
3/4 scant cup powdered sugar, sifted



INSTRUCTIONS:

Beat butter on medium high with an electric mixer just until creamy (about 20 seconds). Add vanilla and almond extract. Beat just until combined.

Combine flour, salt, pudding mix in a small bowl. Add to butter, 1/3 at time, beating until blended before adding more. Beat last addition until well blended. Stir in chocolate chips.

Scoop dough using a small ice cream scoop or a tablespoon. Roll into a ball using hands. Place onto a tray. Cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 2 hours. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Place dough at least 1-inch apart onto an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 12-15 minutes until the bottom of the cookies are lightly brown. Do not over bake. Allow to cool on baking sheet for 3 minutes. Transfer onto cooling rack. Roll in powdered sugar while warm. Cool completely. Roll again in sugar when completely cool.  

Makes 20 cookies.


Recipe Notes:
  1. Chilling of the dough is optional. I like to chill the dough to firm up the butter, which prevents spreading while baking.
  2. If you prefer cookies that are not too sweet, omit the first roll in powdered sugar while the cookies are warm. Roll only once, when cookies are cooled.








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November 30, 2017

STICKY CRANBERRY ORANGE GLAZED PORK RIBS

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Sticky Cranberry Orange Glazed Pork Ribs are slow roasted and tender fall-off-the-bone good! They are perfect for the holiday season but you are going to want them all year long!

STICKY CRANBERRY ORANGE GLAZED PORK RIBS
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Hi there! So, have you started your Christmas/holiday shopping? Were you one of the brave souls who dared to stand toe-to-toe with intrepid Black Friday shoppers who were on a mission to go home with prime items at rock bottom prices?

If so, I hope you had a successful shopping trip! As for me, I opted out on the whole post-Thanksgiving Day ritual again this year. In fact, I was at work, but don't feel bad for me. It was a quiet and fruitful day at the office, quite nice really.

November 16, 2017

GINGER CINNAMON SWEET POTATO BISQUE WITH SMOKED PAPRIKA PECANS

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Ginger Cinnamon Sweet Potato Bisque With Smoked Paprika Pecans is a delicious blend of autumnal flavors and makes an ideal start to the holiday meals. But why limit it to special occasion, this soup is perfect on its own!

Ginger Cinnamon Sweet Potato Bisque with Smoked Paprika Pecans
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Guys, you are not going to be believe this, but I just heard the first Christmas song of the year on the radio!! WHAAAAT?! Already? Do they not know that it's only November16th

As I drove off to pick up my morning decaf Cup of Joe, to what does my stunned ears should hear, but Andy Williams singing "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year". There is a local radio station that plays Christmas music 24/7 around the holidays, but don't recall it EVER starting so early. Needless to say, I changed the station. It is just too soon. Too soon!

November 09, 2017

PHILLY CHEESESTEAK HAND PIES

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Philly Cheesesteak Hand Pies are filled with seasoned ground beef, chopped onions, green peppers, and Provolone cheese. They are convenient and easy to reheat. Make a large batch ahead of time for quick and satisfying snacks, lunch, or even dinner during the week. 

Philly Cheesesteak Hand Pies
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Hi there friends! I hope you adjusted to the time change without too much trouble. Now that we pushed the clock back an hour, it is definitely nicer in the morning. No longer am I leaving the house in complete darkness when I go to work, which is a plus. On the flip side, it now gets dark at 5:00 pm! Whoever coined the phrase "you win some, you lose some" must have done it after they experienced daylight savings! Can we push the clock back and push the end of the work day back an hour too? I think that's a totally awesome and sensible idea ;)  

November 02, 2017

GRAPE-NUT PUDDING WITH CINNAMON WHISKEY MAPLE CREAM SAUCE

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Classic grape-nut pudding gets an update with Cinnamon Whiskey Maple Cream Sauce. Delicious served hot or cold, this pudding is a dessert with  maximum comfort level.

Grape-Nut Pudding With Cinnamon Whiskey Maple Cream Sauce
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Happy November or better yet, Happy post Halloween!! Did you have a ghoulishly scary night filled with goblins, ghosts, and zombies? Well, there weren't many of those around my house, but there were plenty of Spider-Men, SWAT teams, and inflatable costumes. Have you seen those body size blowup costumes? They come in all different characters and are the coolest things. Every time I saw one, all I could think of was the Pillsbury Doughboy. Just adorable! Imagine Doughboy and all his puffy friends wandering around in your neighborhood! It was a fun trick or treating night for all in my neck of the woods.