Chocolate Chip Cherry Coconut DropsDec 23, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cherry Coconut DropsPart of the fun of Christmas baking is enjoying the intricate creations coming from the kitchen.  But for a quick, simple, and tasty treat, whip off a batch of this little darlings.  And they can be made by your little darlings – this recipe is very kid friendly!

Chocolate Chip Cherry Coconut Drops (2 dozen)

1/3 cup – 75 mL margarine/butter
1/2 cup – 125 mL granulated sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp – 2 mL almond extract (can substitute vanilla)
3/4 cup – 175 mL all purpose flour
1/2 tsp – 2 mL baking powder
3/4 cup – 175 mL semi-sweet chocolate chips (can substitute white chocolate chips)
1/2 cup – 125 mL shredded coconut
1/2 cup – 125 mL chopped maraschino cherries (red or green or both if you want to be really festive)

Preheat oven to 325F / 160C.  Grease a cookie sheet. Cream shortening and sugar.  Beat in egg, extract flour and baking powder.  Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Drop by spoonful onto the cookie sheet and bake for 15-17 minutes.  Transfer to wire racks to cool.

These cookies stay soft in an airtight container.

Gingerbread CakeDec 17, 2012

There are a few things that say “only for Christmas” and for me, gingerbread is one of them. I’m all for cookies loaded with icing but I found this recipe for actual cake and on occasion, it’s even better. It is a dense, moist cake that does not rise. In fact, the texture is a lot like a brownie but a little lighter.

Gingerbread Cake

2 cups – 500 ml flour
1/2 cup – 125 ml granulated sugar
1 tsp – 5 ml baking powder
1/2 tsp – 2 ml baking soda
1 tsp – 5 ml salt
2 tsp – 10 ml ginger
1 tsp – 5 ml cinnamon
1/2 cup – 125 ml butter or margarine, softened
2 eggs
3/4 cup – 175 ml fancy molasses
1/2 cup – 125 ml milk

Preheat oven to 350F/180C. Measure all ingredients into mixing bowl.  Beat slowly to combine together. Beat at medium high speed for 2 minutes until smooth. Spread into a greased 9 x 13 inch (22 x 33 cm) pan. Bake in oven for about 30 minutes until an inserted wooden pick comes out clean.

Do NOT overcook. Let cool and then place in an airtight container or cover with plastic wrap. It dries out quickly.

Great with whipped cream or ice-cream. And caramel sauce.