Sunday, October 23, 2005

Only 63 More Baking Days Until Christmas!

Perhaps that doesn't worry you, but I know I'm feeling a little jittery about it.

The truth is, I don't even have that much time because I usually have to have most of my holiday baking done around the first week of December in order to have everything ready for a hand-picked bunch of students as they head into finals week.

So yes, when it comes to holiday baking, I start early. (And I give thanks to my Fabulous Aunt for turning on that little light bulb over my head to make me realize that hey! if I spread it out over a couple of months, I don't get as stressed!)

I'm planning on baking less this year: only a couple of kinds of cookies, two kinds of biscotti, baklava (of course), and some spiced nuts. But every year, I say I'm not going to bake as much... and then I do anyway. So don't hold me to this.

That's why this weekend I made two batches of one of my favorite cookies: ginger-molasses cookies. Like gingersnaps but soft, these dark and delectable morsels melt in your mouth with their buttery, spicy goodness.

And best of all, they freeze and thaw exceptionally well, enabling me to bake them now, freeze a few bags of them, and enjoy the rest with some warm mulled cider.

On top of that, I also tested two new biscotti recipes: chai biscotti, courtesy of faithful reader Tina, and pumpkin spice biscotti. Will either of these make the cut for holiday baking? It's possible, though the usual standbys of cranberry-orange and ginger-pecan are awfully tough to beat.

In the meantime, the project has been started, the freezer has been replenished, and I have cookies to share.

Well... maybe.

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