Santa Worthy Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies
36 cookies (or 18 large)
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 ¼ cup unsalted butter at room temperature (grass-fed, if possible)
- 1 ¾ cups light brown sugar
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract
- 1 ¼ pounds either bitter-sweet, semi-sweet, milk chocolate or white chocolate chips to your preference (half milk-chocolate and half white chocolate is a fan favorite in our house)
- Coarse sea salt for sprinkling
- Sift together the flour, baking soda, and baking powder into a bowl. Set aside.
- Using a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or a handheld mixer, cream together the butter and both sugars until very light (approx. 5 mins.) in a medium-large bowl.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, to your butter-sugar mixture, and mix well after each addition.
- Add in the vanilla to the butter-sugar mixture.
- Reduce your mixing speed to low and add in 1/3 of the dry ingredients. Once fully combined, add another 1/3 of the dry ingredients and mix to combine. Repeat one more time until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated to the wet ingredients.
- Add chocolate to the dough (if you are using chopped chocolate chunks instead of chips, be careful not to break the pieces too much).
- Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and keep in the fridge for 30 mins to 2 hours so it’s easier to handle.
- Once they are chilled, take the dough out of the fridge, create small cookie dough balls (about the size of half an ice cream scoop each) and place the dough balls on a baking sheet (it’s okay if they are right up next to each other on this tray).
- Place the tray into your freezer and freeze the cookie dough for approx. 2 hours until they are firm.
- If you are planning to only bake some at this point, you can store any unused dough balls in a freezer-safe bag or container for future use. These keep well for a few months raw/frozen. We do this often in our house and only bake 1-2 cookies per person, so they are fresh every time. I almost always have some in the freezer for a yummy and easy treat on the fly or for when you have unexpected guests!
- To bake, heat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place the frozen cookie dough balls approx. 2 inches apart.
- Sprinkle with coarse salt (it’s okay if most of the salt falls off, as the cookies bake and spread out the salt on the pan will stick to the sides of the cookies).
- Bake for 15-18 minutes. If you don’t have a convection oven, I suggest turning the baking sheet halfway through to ensure all the cookies bake evenly.
- Place the full baking sheet on a wire rack to cool for about 5 minutes as the cookies will be very fragile when fresh out of the oven.
- Then transfer the cookies off the baking dish to a wire rack to cool a bit more.
- Eat warm if possible!
Creamy Chicken (or Turkey) Soup
- 6 cups chicken broth (I make broth from my turkey bones)
- 5 cups water
- Salt to taste
- 3-4 chicken thighs, skinless boneless (or use leftover turkey)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 3 medium carrots, 2 carrots grated, 1 carrot sliced into thin rings or half circles
- 2 medium celery stalks, finely chopped or thinly sliced if you prefer
- 2 cups pasta such as rotini, egg noodles, or your favourite kind
- 1 cup corn, from 15 oz can, or preferably 1 cooked cob
- 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 3 Tbsp fresh or frozen dill
- 1 tsp Mrs. Dash, or your favorite salt-free seasoning
- In a large soup pot, combine 6 cups broth, 5 cups water and 1/2 Tbsp salt. Bring to a boil then add chicken thighs (no need to trim fat), and boil uncovered 20 min. Skim off impurities that rise to the top. While chicken is cooking, proceed with step 2.
- Place a large pan over medium heat and add 2 Tbsp olive oil. Add chopped onion and sauté until softened (5 min), then increase heat to med/high and add grated carrots, chopped celery and sauté 5-7 min, stirring often until soft and golden then transfer to soup pot.
- Remove chicken thighs from the pot and let rest until cool enough to handle, then use forks or hands to shred chicken, discarding any bones and fat (which should come off easily). Return shredded chicken to the pot (by the time it’s cooled and shredded, this is usually after step 4.
- Add 2 cups pasta, sliced carrots and corn to the soup pot and continue cooking 15 min at a low boil until pasta is at desired softness. You can skim off any excess oil from the top at this point if you want the soup to be a little lighter.
- In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt 4 Tbsp butter, whisk in 1/3 cup flour and cook whisking constantly for 1 to 2 min or until just barely turning golden. Ladle 1 cup of hot broth from the soup pot into flour mixture, whisking continually until well blended then whisk in 1/2 cup heavy cream and transfer mixture to the soup pot, stirring until well blended.
- Season soup with 1 tsp Mrs. Dash (or your favourite salt-free seasoning) and more salt to taste if needed. Add 3 Tbsp dill then return to a boil and turn off the heat. Enjoy!
- 100ml milk
- 2 eggs
- Pinch of salt
- Vegetable oil or lard
- 100g flour
Yorkshire Puddings (Yorkies)
- Heat a muffin tin with a bit of oil in each space at 450f / 230c for a good half hour until oil is really hot and slightly smoking. This is the most important part.
- Mix milk egg and salt really well then add in a bit of flour at a time, mix really well you want a smooth mix, use a whisk or fork (or in a blender).
I like to make mine a couple of hours in advance and keep mixing now and again, if you see tiny bubbles that’s even better.
- When pan is hot enough take out of oven and quickly add mix, then put back in oven quickly
- Cook for about 15-20 mins check after 15 only by looking through glass. Do NOT open oven door, it’ll make the temp drop.
- You’ll know if they need longer. They might look too deflated or not crispy enough
- ½ side of salmon – fillet, deboned and no skin
- 1 pkg puff pastry (thawed)
- 1 pkg frozen chopped spinach (thawed)
- 2 tsps minced dried onion
- 2 eggs
- small sprinkle of nutmeg
- salt & pepper to taste
- ½ fresh papaya (skinned)
- 1 pkg of McCormick’s International Lemon Dill Sauce
- 2 lemons (for décor and final sprinkling)
- a few sprigs of parsley for décor (optional)
- Preheat oven to 425°F
- Squeeze all water out of spinach and pat dry with paper towel
- Add one egg, dried onion, nutmeg, salt and pepper to the spinach and stir well (set aside)
- Slice up papaya (set aside)
- Using a little bit of flour, roll out the puff pastry ensuring you have enough to wrap around your salmon
- Spread spinach mixture in the centre of the puff pastry creating a bed for the salmon
- Paper towel dry your salmon and place it on top of the spinach
- Layer the papaya slices on top of the salmon
- Slit the pastry dough like below
- Fold end pieces (1) and (2) over to the centre
- Take piece (A1) and (B1) and twirl / tie together; repeat with (A2) and (B2), etc.
- Transfer wrapped salmon to cookie sheet lined with parchment paper
- Beat one egg and brush the entire puff pastry surface
- Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350°F
- Bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, then cool for 15 minutes before serving
- Prepare lemon dill sauce according to package instructions (but I have used 1/3 less butter and it was fine)
- Platter the salmon with sprigs of parsley and jagged cut lemons