One of the things we look forward to every year is making Christmas cookies. Sure, we can make cookies any time of the year, but there are more reasons to make them in December. There’s always the cookie exchange with friends. We like giving cookies as gifts in a festive tin. And, don’t forget Santa!
While there are lots of great Christmas cookie recipes out there, and while taste is obviously important, we know that’s not all that matters. While you can’t necessary judge a cookie’s taste by it’s appearance, nobody wants to take the burnt, badly decorated cookies at the cookie exchange.
We’ve rounded up some of our favorite cookie tips that we pretty much consider life-savers, or cookie-savers. These tips can be used to make a wide variety of Christmas cookies look as good as they taste and taste fresh as long as possible. Santa will definitely be impressed!
First and foremost, you don’t want your cookies ending up in the trash just because they have some burnt edges or bottoms. Every home chef experiences the horror of burnt cookies once in awhile. If you have a grater or zester, you can easily save these cookies. Simply use your grater to scrape off the burnt part, and keep the rest. Nobody will ever know.
Go to your local Dollar Store and pick up a few ketchup bottles. These squeeze tubes make it easy for even messy cookie decorators (like kids) to create fancy designs on cookies, cupcakes and more. You might wonder why you ever messed with frosting bags.
This stencil can be paper cutouts, a doily or even a piece of lace. Put the stencil over your cookies, and sift powdered sugar or cocoa powder on top. Once you remove the stencil, you’ll be left with a beautiful design. (We prefer powdered sugar because it looks like snow!)
Use chocolate, melted chocolate that is. Chocolate is an easy way to make simple cookies look fancy. You can either dip half of a cookie in melted chocolate or drizzle the melted chocolate on top. Either way, you can’t go wrong. Use whatever type of chocolate you like – milk, dark, or white. If you choose white chocolate, you could even add a drop or two of food coloring (like red or green). Make the cookies extra fancy by sprinkling some festive sprinkles on top before the chocolate dries.
Now that your cookies look amazing, you want to prevent them from getting stale. You can easily do this by putting tortillas between the layers of cookies. Really. The moisture in the tortillas will help keep your cookies moist when they’re in a confined space like a cookie tin. For best results, put a layer of cookies, a layer of parchment paper, a tortilla, another layer of parchment paper, and repeat for however many layers of cookies you have.
How are you going to decorate your Christmas cookies? Do you participate in a cookie exchange?