Homemade cookies make the perfect Christmas gift. There are many people that one would like to give a little gift during the holidays. A bag of homemade cookies is not too expensive and it is a warm and thoughtful gift.
You can hand them out to your children’s teachers, colleagues at work or even neighbors. People of different religions than yours will also enjoy this token of friendship during Christmas.
If you have a good basic recipe, you can add different ingredients to make different variations of cookies. Also decorating the cookies in different ways will make the recipient feel as if you have slaved for hours to made his lovely bag of homemade cookies.
Here is the recipe for the basic dough.
250 gram of butter
half a cup of white sugar
half a cup of brown or yellow sugar
one extra large egg
one teaspoon of vanilla extract
two cups of flour
a half a teaspoon of baking powder
one teaspoon of baking soda
a pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius, to our American friends that is 360 degrees Fahrenheit.
Spray a few large baking trays with baking spray or you can rub the trays with a bit of margarine or oil to keep the cookies from sticking to the tray.
Mix the butter and sugar together into a creamy mixture.
Add the egg and vanilla and mix well.
Mix all the dry ingredients together(flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt) and then add it with the butter mixture.
Your dough will be a bit soft, but that is all right, wet your fingers with a bit of water to prevent the dough from getting too sticky as you roll it into little balls.
Place these balls far from each other on the baking trays to prevent them from touching each other as they start to spread.
Bake the cookies for about 15 to 20 minutes in the oven or until they are golden brown. Let the cookies cool down a bit after you have removed the baking trays from the oven.
This amount of dough makes about forty cookies, it all depends on how big you roll the dough balls.
I like to decorate these cookies with sprinkles, or hundreds and thousands. Just press a teaspoon full of sprinkles into the dough balls before you pop the baking tray into the oven. You can also decorate them with crystallised cherries or different kinds of nuts.
Chocolate chips or raisins can be add into the basic dough before rolling the dough into little balls for a totally different kind of cookie.
Peanut butter cookies can be made by replacing half of the amount of the butter in the basic recipe with peanut butter. After you had made the dough balls, dip a fork into flour and press it downwards on the cookies to give a different look to your peanut butter cookies.
Custard cookies. Replace one and a half cup of the flour in the basic recipe with instant custard or vanilla pudding powder.
Ginger cookies can be made by adding three tablespoons of dry ginger powder with the dry ingredients in the basic recipe.
Coconut cookies are made by adding a cup of coconut into your basic dough.
The only thing left to do, is to buy the ingredients, keep an afternoon open to bake the cookies and then get baking! Mix a bunch of different cookies into a decorated brown bag and start handing out your homemade Christmas cookies. You will see that they are indeed a perfect Christmas gift.