December is almost here, it is that time of the year when homes here in the US are filled with delicious baking smells. Holidays are full of fun, family, and great food- and lots to do! It’s essential to eat with joy and it’s a blessing to bake for people who eat with joy. That’s what holidays is all about.
Here are some tips for the cookie baker in you, to make this holiday season less intense and more joyful. These are the most common cookie problems that I’ve faced and how to fix them, I hope you’ll find it useful and…. keep baking.
1- Cookies are spreading/flat:By far, this is the most common question I’ve been asked and the most common problem that happened to me. Especially with high fat content cookie dough, cookies seems to spread like crazy in the oven and melt! Here is what I’ve done, you’ll need to try to
- Scoop your dough and chill the dough before baking, this ALWAYS fix the problem.
- Always cool the baking pan between batches. You can do this quickly by running cold water on the back of the sheet.
- Use shortening or oil instead of butter. What I sometimes do is using a mixture of shortening and butter as I do not want to sacrifice the buttery flavor.
- Bake in a hotter oven, low oven temperature causes spreading.
2- Cookies are too tough/stiff: This is the second complaint most people suffer from, my cookies are tough the kind that will break your teeth :). Flour is mostly the culprit here, you’ve added too much flour than necessary. Other reasons include less fat, over mixing or over-baking.
- Measure flour accurately or try to reduce flour a bit (1/4 cup).
- Add an egg.
- Bake a few minutes less or try to take out your cookies when it starts browning at the edges.
3- Cookies are too dark: This probably is caused by the baking pan itself, do not use dark pans, this is my favorite baking pan. Fixing this is not hard just try one or more of the following:
- Use heavy, dull aluminum, non insulated light colored pan.
- Reduce sugar to prevent over-browning.
Finally: To keep your cookies from hardening after baking, store them in an airtight container immediately after baking. If they got hard, put a piece of bread with the cookies in the container overnight.
———————— Originally posted on June 21, 2017.
Holidays are the busiest seasons in many kitchens and the Middle Eastern one is no difference.Cookies show up in different forms/colors and flavors. My guess is, many holidays around the world are celebrated with cookies. Eid al fitr which follows Ramadan is also celebrated by cookies, many different kinds of cookies.
I tend to make the same types of cookies each year, which are the traditional ones. Kahk is a must, betefour is a second must and also ghorayeba. But I also like to shake things up by making at least one new holiday cookie. I have many cookie monsters in my house, who will enjoy cookies year round. Here are some to share with you today.
1- Good old Kahk:
I’ve made Kahk twice on this blog the old one with the traditional way and the more modified one stuffed with pistachios. Both turned out great. Eid is not considered a real one without kahk which comes in many sorts of stuffings or not stuffed at all.
My kid’s favorite is the chocolate one glues together with any sort of jam. One of my kiddos though, like it unglued so he can dip it freely in a bowl of Nutella.
3- Coconut macaroons:
A seriously easy recipe for coconut macaroons or as we call them in Egypt “Shakallama”. This macaroon recipe does not have condensed milk in it which make it easier to control the sweetness.
4- Caramel Heavenlies:
Another coconut-y recipe that was a hit, this one is adults/kids approved. Ridiculously easy recipe that requires no special skills at all.
6- Chocolate dipped orange cookies:
These orange cookies was an adult only recipe in my home. The orange flavor was enough to drive my kids away, add to this the dark chocolate and they will never think twice :). But really orange + dark chocolate + pistachios = heavenly flavor combination.
7- Nutty chocolate caramel cups:
There has to be something for everyone during holidays , so this one is for caramel lovers. These are not really cookies but they are oh sooo gooood that I could not ignore in this post.
10- Ruby cookies:
These jam filled with a cherry on top little gems are wonderful by all means. Not sweet at all yet feel free to sweeten them up with your choice of jam or Nutella.
We’ll be taking some days off for our Eid celebration. Happy Eid for all those who are observing these holy days, May God accept all your hard work during the holy month of Ramadan. Enjoy your holidays.
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