I know your Thanksgiving meals are now just a memory, so it's on to Christmas. Lots of meals, lots of sweets and a few parties make December just fly by. I plan on making some Christmas cookies after watching one entire week of baking competitions on the cooking channel. I have a Ninja food processor, like the ones they use in TV kitchens, and a few questions and hints have me thinking that a multi-purpose stand mixer will be mine soon. I have never been great at making cutout cookies or homemade yeast breads. If the contestants are the real deal; this mixer should change my luck considerably.
When I was a teen, and my aunt was too, she would make one batch of Honey Sugar Cookies each Christmas. She decorated them with Pillsbury canned frosting, but they were fabulous. I actually would beg her to make another batch but she never would. To my young untrained brain this spelled "hard to make." Now I know the secret!
I don't have a recipe to share for a great sugar cookie so if you have one that is soft and maybe uses honey, please send it to me. I am on facebook.
I do have a fool proof recipe for baked beans or meatloaf (save the meatloaf recipe for January meals) but serve the baked beans with baked ham for a simple get together dinner. We call this bean goo...so make a big batch and keep it in the refrigerator.
In a medium sauce pan mix one cup ketchup with one cup brown sugar. Add 1/2 cup chopped onion, 1/2 cup chopped green or red pepper, a pinch of cayenne pepper and 1/2 cup vinegar. Simmer for about ten minutes, stirring constantly. Now add some meat: either cooked sausage, bacon or some BBQ...only one half cup or so will be fine. Add one cup of the mixture to 3 cans of pork and beans (drained) and bake for 30 minutes in a baking dish at 300 degrees.
To make a meatloaf, start with 2 pounds ground chuck, add one cup of bean goo and mix well. Add 2 beaten eggs, one cup of cracker crumbs and salt and pepper to taste. Shape into a loaf and bake for one hour at 350 degrees. If you always wonder if you have enough, or too much, salt, this is a tip we used at The Hut. Take one TBSP. of meat mixture and cook in a small skillet or the microwave till done. Taste and proceed.
Now back to the goodies of the season. Always keep some flavored butter mixed to eat with hot bread. I use one stick softened butter, one TBSP. powdered sugar and mix well. Add 2 TBSP. honey...or 2 TBSP. strawberry ice cream topping or jam, for a sweet treat. Make your own garlic butter with one stick softened butter and one teaspoon minced garlic. Add a dash of Italian seasoning if desired.
I will be watching for those cookie recipes. Thanks!