Posted by hsimpsongrossman on December 6, 2015
Every year on Hanukkah, my sister hosts all of us for a candle lighting gathering.
The menu hasn’t changed for years: the appetizers consist of a hearty soup, salads, pizza for the kids (and some of the adults), interesting breads and the likes. And for the main course, coffee and cakes.
Each of us bakes one cake (except for my superhuman sister, who in addition to all of the above, bakes two or three cakes). My sister in-law usually goes for a chocolaty cake, a safe bet when it comes to the kids, and I take advantage of the opportunity and prepare something new and adventurous. I try to take into account all of my extended family members’ food oddities, and I usually do succeed in avoiding the various traps and pitfalls presented by their bizarre tastes.
For this year’s family gathering, I felt like baking something savory I had seen in a food magazine –a pretzel challah, filled with Parmesan and za’atar. Given a paper due on Thursday and a presentation on Chaucer’s Pardoner I will be giving on Wednesday, I couldn’t take upon myself any sophisticated cake in addition to the time consuming challah.
Thank God, my friends at Baked Sunday Mornings were baking these Whipped Shortbread cookies, which sounded both presentable enough for a desert table and easy to make. So, I ignored my minor hysteria caused by the enormous amount of butter required (2 sticks!) and decided to indulge my family with sinful, melt-in-your-mouth cookies, for a change.
I whipped them up in no time-once the butter was soft it was a matter of minutes to get the dough together. I thought of drizzling melted chocolate on top but had no time for an extra pot to wash, so settled for halved pecans on half the cookies and nothing on the other half. One might presume I was thinking of the kids while omitting nuts from some of the cookies, but the truth is I just loved the crisscross pattern.
They came out exactly as expected – smooth, delicate, melt in-your-mouth chunks of pleasure. That may be attributed to the fact that I was in such a hurry, I forgot to think of a healthier version for these, and made them verbatim, with no changes whatsoever.
May you all have a Merry Christmas, happy Kwanzaa and/or a Hanukkah filled with lights!
Filed under Cookies