Friday, December 6, 2019

Cranberry Bliss Cookie Bars

Virtual Cookie Exchange 
I am so appreciative of Carol at JustLetMeQuilt for organizing this Blog hop and all the others she puts together.  She has been an inspiration to me for years.  Thank you Carol for keeping me excited to try new things.  

I looked at several copy cat recipes for the Starbucks bar and then I adjusted this one to make it a little more cookie than cake texture.  You can use the hint at the bottom if you want it to be thicker like the ones they sell at Starbucks.  I do a cookie exchange and I love finding bars that I can make in the 1/2 sheet pan.  I hope you enjoy this as much as my family and friends.

Cranberry bliss bar cookie

·        1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted
·        1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
·        3 eggs
·        1 teaspoon orange extract
·        1 teaspoon vanilla extract
·        1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
·        1 teaspoon baking powder
·        1/2 teaspoon salt
·        2 cups all-purpose flour
·        1 cup white chocolate chips
·        3/4 cup Craisins
·        8 oz. cream cheese, softened
·        1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
·        1/2 teaspoon orange extract
·        1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
·        1/3 cup Craisins, roughly chopped (Chop and toss in 1 Tab. Powdered sugar to keep from sticking)
·        ½ cup of white chocolate chips, melted for drizzle
·        Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 15x10 inch jelly roll pan or rimmed cookie sheet with parchment paper.
·        Beat together melted butter and brown sugar over medium speed with an electric mixer. Add in eggs, 1 tsp orange extract
      and 1 tsp vanilla extract and beat until mixed well. Add in ground ginger, baking powder, salt, and flour, beating until just 
      blended. Don't overmix.
·        Stir in white chocolate chips and Craisins by hand. Spread and pat evenly into the bottom of prepared pan. Bake in 
      preheated oven for 18-22 minutes until set and golden brown at the edges. Don't overbake. Remove from oven and 
      place pan on a wire rack to cool. Allow bars to cool completely before topping with frosting.
·        To make the frosting, beat cream cheese and powdered sugar together with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. 
      Add 1/2 tsp orange extract and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and mix well. Top cooled bars with frosting. Spread with a wet spatula.
·        Sprinkle with chopped Craisins and drizzle melted white chocolate over the top with a fork. Refrigerate until ready to eat.
·        This freezes very well in an airtight container.  I have frozen the cookie part in the pan and then frosted when I needed them.  
Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bar Style:
·       Use a 9 x13 baking pan for a thicker bar.  Make the same, but cook time is 22-25 min.  Finish the same as cookies.

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Happy Halloween Travels

This is made simply with a Halloween charm pack  that was sashed.  The witches were designed by my son to add a little more personality.  The leader and the caboose are both in a dark purple and the center witch is a black sparkle fabric.  My husband made the broom so I was happy to be able to use it with the quilt.  Happy Halloween travels!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Simple but Amazing Shortbread Cutout Cookies


                       Thank you Carol for organizing this fun event again.  I love trying the new recipes each year.

                 Simple Cutout Cookies

2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
Combine and set aside

1 cup room temp Butter
¾ Cup powdered sugar
Cream together and add
1 tablespoon vanilla or almond extract

Add dry ingredients and mix only until blended.  Over missing will cause toughness.
Divide dough in 1/2 put each half into a zip lock bag and roll flat. Refrigerate up to 3 days or freeze.  Very easy clean up.

rolled dough
removing top layer of plastic
dough scraps 

Preheat oven to 350
Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicon mats.

Remove dough from refrigerator and gently cut the top of the zippered bag off and remove it.  Use cookie cutters to cut desired shapes.   Place on cookie sheets.   I find it challenging to use cutters with small pointed edges but large stars work fine.  Reroll scraps of dough in new zippered bags and chill again.

Bake 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges.  Cool  5 minutes on sheet before removing and cooling completely on rack.

2 cups powdered sugar
3-6 Tablespoons milk
½ teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
2 drops food coloring if desired.

Wisk powdered sugar, milk and extract.   If it is to thin you can add more sugar, to think add more milk.  Frost or dip into frosting just enough to cover the surface.  Place on cooling rack or parchment paper.  When cookies are completely dry store in an air tight container for up to 2 weeks or in the freezer for an extended period.
I like to frost (dip) mine in white frosting and sprinkle sugar crystals on them to add a sparkle.