Santa Visit 2006

by Cate on December 14, 2006

I am totally on target with Christmas shopping. How many people left to buy for on my list? What’s that? Nobody? ::insert maniacal laughter here:: Oh yes, that’s right. I’m DONE with my Christmas shopping!

Unfortunately, that’s the only thing I’m done with. I just picked up the pictures of Nicholas to go out in the Christmas cards that have yet to be addressed. I haven’t planned our Christmas Eve Feast of Seven Fishes menu yet, and most importantly, I haven’t started baking for the Cookie Care Packages that I send out. So while I may be totally and completely organized in one respect, all the rest of the aspects of the holidays are lagging far behind, far far behind.

I’ve designated this weekend as Operation Bake Up a Storm, so that means I need to figure out exactly WHAT I’m going to be making. I should also probably make a list of who I need to send the packages to, but I’m more of a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants kinda gal.

One of my biggest problems is whittling down my list of what to include in the packages. So many recipes, so little time. I know I’m definitely making batches of both Chocolate and Peanut Butter No Bake Cookies, but beyond that, it’s anybody’s guess. So I’m turning to you guys… Whatcha baking for your holiday treats? C’mon, inspire me!

Until tomorrow…

A year ago today… mmmm, delicious soup.

P.S. I’ve been trying to track down a lit-up wreath for the outside of the house. I saw it on a house a few blocks away, and yes, I’ve thought of asking them where they got it, but they’re never home when I stop by. When it’s not lit, it’s all white. Lit, it’s very twinkly and perfect for some unadorned spot on our house. If you’re familiar with the big snowman that Costco sold last year, it twinkles like that. Know who sells it? Clue me in. I’ve been everywhere and can’t find it!

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{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Anonymous December 14, 2006 at 3:32 am

I’m trying to decide exactly what I’m going to make as well. But I think for my goodie tins I’m going to do peanut butter balls, Ginger/Molasses cookies, my mom’s toffee, and biscotti. Of course when I get home I’ll make the typical Christmas sugar cookies for my brother and some chex mix for my dad! I’m also going to be trying the coconut cookies from all-recipes. Oh, I can’t wait to be done with my tests so that I can start baking!


PatL December 14, 2006 at 4:16 am

I’m making treat packages for the stockings this year. They’ll contain espresso coffee beans, honeyed walnuts, spicy pecans, and cream cheese mints (pink wintergreen and green peppermint). I just did a post about the mints. They were really easy and fun to make, and yummm!


Elle December 14, 2006 at 4:33 am

This year sending out 8 tins of cookies to 8 families – my siblings and my Mom. Just finished boxing them up. From my blog there are the Santas without the whiskers, the Linzer bars, Applesauce drops and Persimmon drops as well as Chocolate Shortbread Hearts. Never got a chance to blog the Double Chocolate Gems (like little brownies in mini muffin cups) and Salted Nut Bars. Both those recipes are on the Land O Lakes Butter website. Of all of these the Chocolate Shortbreads and Linzers are the favorites. I’m sure you will have a great time baking your family favorites. It’s always fun to read your posts.


Alisha December 14, 2006 at 4:34 am

You know, I’m done with my shopping too (and have all my cards out) but am completely CLUELESS about my goodie baskets. This weekend will be my bake-a-thon too and will (probably) include fudge, sugar cookies, peanut brittle, biscotti and rugelach.


Scott at Real Epicurean December 14, 2006 at 12:35 pm

Lot’s of sweet stuff for me – but it doesn’t really count as baking.

Fudge, sesame brittle, etc etc. Oh, and cookies. I guess those do count.


Cate December 14, 2006 at 1:17 pm

Claire – do you have a good tried-and-true recipe for the Peanut Butter Balls you can share?

PatL – I want to get on YOUR list; everything sounds divine!

Elle – I made the Salted Nut Bars last year, and they’re definitely delicious.

Alisha – Fudge. I definitely have two kinds of my list. Finally started planning a bit last night.

Scott – yup, I’m pretty sure cookies count. ;)


patsy December 14, 2006 at 1:47 pm

I only have 4 cookies done so far: Chocolate Earthquake Cookies (similar to chocolate crackles), Sand Tarts, Snickerdoodles and Jam Thumbprints (a Martha Stewart recipe that is very hard to resist)… may take a stab at making my moms peanut butter fudge. I am also hoping to make up a large batch of cocoa that I can package up and give in cute mugs to my boys’ teachers this year. There may be more, but I am still working on the list!


Anonymous December 14, 2006 at 2:25 pm

It’s crazy. Everytime I see pictures of Nicholas he looks bigger. I was looking at trip pictures from Oct. and he looks bigger now.

The husband (neighbor)


Anonymous December 14, 2006 at 4:00 pm

Hi, I’m a new food blogger and have been reading your site for awhile. Thought I’d mention this great recipe from Bon Appetit for white chocolate and cranberry cookies.

I made them for a party last weekend, and they were such a hit, I made another batch to give as gifts this week! I omitted the nuts and just used the whole bag of chips and cranberries.


Merry December 14, 2006 at 4:21 pm

I haven’t finalized everything yet but here’s what I know:

Definitely Making
Cherry Icebox Cookies (for my cookie exchange)
Candied Pecans with dried cranberries
Peanut Brittle

Maybe Making
Magic Cookie Bars
Peanut Butter Crunchies (a no-bake bar with p’nut butter & corn flakes)


Cate December 14, 2006 at 5:08 pm

Merry – how ’bout the recipe for Peanut Butter Crunchies? They sound delish!

Patsy – you’re way ahead of me. I haven’t made Martha’s version of the Jam Thumbprints, but Barefoot Contessa’s is totally sinful.

Charise – thanks for the recipe link (and visiting!).

The Neighbor Husband – it’s so hard to tell when we see them every day, but he has definitely lost a bit of his “babiness” in his face.


lisa ny December 14, 2006 at 7:44 pm

everybody’s treats sound so good:)i have to try & stick to my original plan after hearing all the good ideas!

i am making:
pb cup cookies (pb dough in mini-muffin tins w a mini pb cup pushed in center)so easy & you can use store bought dough as well!
peanut & cashew brittle (my first time-wish me luck!)
pignoli (pine nut) cookies
oatmeal chocolate chip
pecan tassies (most requested!)
almond raspberry thumbprints
red & green press cookies

it all seems a little ambitious but that is what i give to my co-workers, friends & neighbors as gifts so at least i avoid shopping! plus my surrogate italian mama makes about 177 dozen cookies so mine should be a breeze, right? :)

happy holidays to all!!


Anonymous December 14, 2006 at 8:15 pm

It’s so interesting to see what everyone else makes at this time of year!
I’ll definitely be making our favorite Cheddar Shortbread which we eat topped with jalapeno jelly (so, so good!). Other must-makes include Chocolate Gingersnaps, Chocolate Peanut Butter Bark, Spiced Pecans, and a cheeseball. I guess I better get to work!


Merry December 14, 2006 at 9:03 pm

Here’s the recipe for Peanut Butter Crunchies

Peanut Butter Crunchies

1 cup corn syrup (I use green label Karo)
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup smooth peanut butter
4 – 6 cups cornflakes

Heat the corn syrup and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat until the sugar is desolved. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter. Add cornflakes until you have the consistency you want (more cornflakes make them crunchier while less make them chewier). Drop on waxed paper or press into a buttered 11X14″ pan.


Anonymous December 15, 2006 at 12:19 am

I have actually never made the PB balls, but I have seen several other sites with recipes (My Sister’s Kitchen, Tummy Treasure). I may, however, end up using a recipe from my college’s cookbook. We’ll see. I’ll definitely post about them, so we can all see how they turn out!


Anonymous December 15, 2006 at 9:18 pm

Living in Australia the last thing you want to be doing is cooking a huge European or American Christmas dinner in the middle of summer, yet other people always do!
There nothing more ridiculous in summer than roast turkey, baked ham, chestnuts & brussle sprouts, followed by steaming plum pudding when you are already melting from the heat outside.
I try to create a festive menu based around seasonal summer produce. This year I’m serving roast squab pigeons with roasted baby beetroot, carrot & cherry tomatos. Dessert will be pannacotta with fresh cherries. Happy Holidays & keep cooking your beautiful foods.


Cate December 23, 2006 at 2:26 am

LisainNY – 177 dozen cookies? Wow!

Anonymous – can you share the recipe for the Cheddar Shortbread? I love the savory ones.

Anonymous – your Christmas dinner menu sounds very exotic – roast pigeon? :)


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