Sunday, December 24, 2006

The Ungrinchification of Ansley

It's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas, finally.

I have been a little grumpy for the last week, not really negative grumpy, just not overly positive and ready for Christmas. So what helped me kick the grump habit? I had tried having a Christmas party, going to Christmas parties, and decorating my apartment, all to only small avail. So here's what did it; making Christmas cookies while singing along to a new Christmas mix. And just in case you're still struggling to get Christmasy (or stay that way while fight crowds on the roads and in stores), here's the music and the recipe.

The music, click here if you want a copy:
Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas - Ella Fitzgerald
All I Want For Christmas Is You - Olivia Olson
Walking in a Winter Wonderland - Bing Crosby
Jingle Bell Rock - Bobby Helms
Frosty the Snowman - Fiona Apple
Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! - Dean Martin
Baby It’s Cold Outside
Jingle Bells - Ella Fitzgerald
Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home) - U2
The Christmas Song - Nat King Cole
I’ll Be Home For Christmas - Aimee Mann
Have a Holly, Jolly Christmas - The Format
I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas - Ella Fitzgerald
It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas - Bing Crosby
Santa Baby - Eartha Kitt
Sleigh Ride - Ella Fitzgerald
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen - Barenaked Ladies & Sarah McLachlan
It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year
Santa Claus Is Coming to Town - Ella Fitzgerald
Last Christmas - Wham
What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve - Ella Fitzgerald

The recipe:
Chocolate Mint Cookies
Makes about 3 dozen

2/3 C packed brown sugar
1/3 c margarine or butter
1 T water
1 C semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 ¼ C flour
1 egg
½ tsp baking soda
About 18-36 Andes mints

In a saucepan, heat brown sugar, margarine, and water over medium heat just until melted, stirring constantly. Stir in chocolate chips until melted. Put mixture in a large bowl and let cool for 10-15 minutes. Add about half of the flour, the egg, and baking soda to the chocolate mixture. Mix until thoroughly combined. Stir in remaining flour (dough will be soft). Place tablespoon-sized blobs 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350° for 6-8 minutes. Let cool a bit but while still warm place ½ an Andes mint (or a whole one depending on what you like) on top of each cookie. As it melts, spread it around the cookie.

So that's the regular recipe. I wanted them to look more festive so I replaced part of the chocolate chips with the Andes mint so they had the same flavor but it was all in the cookie, then I melted white chocolate and spread it on top.This is my attempt at creating a double boiler. It worked and I love this photo because you can see my canisters from my grandma and also the CD player that was playing the mix. And my Portland mug, which always makes me smile.

While the white chocolate was still warm, I sprinkled red and green sugar on top.Lots and lots of cookies!

Then I wrapped small stacks in saran wrap and put then in red cellophane bags with the CD in it too, attached a homemade tag, and have gifts for friends and the Christmas spirit for myself.All ready to go for delivery. Happy Holidays!


Elizabeth said...

I was feeling a bit grinch-y myself today. I just got home from an evening with the family and found a nice note from my roommate, wishing me a merry Christmas, with a "Health by Chocolate instant bliss beauty bar". Now I am listening to your mix and I am so much more in the spirit of Christmas! Chocolate + Good Christmas music = Ho ho ho

chelsea said...

those cookies look yummy...and so pretty!

Tamara said...

Oh good! I ended up making three batches of minty-chocolate-chip cookies too! But I used candy canes. I like the Andes idea.
I tried to post about it on the cooking blog but I can't figure out how to upgrade. :(
I'm so technically behind!
Have fun in Portland!