Every year since he was little, M and I have made Christmas cookies. In the beginning, I did most of the work and he did a little mixing. Over the years, M has learned how to read the recipes, measure the ingredients and mix everything together. He’s very precise with the flour and other dry ingredients – he spoons and levels, rather than pouring in the flour (too much flour makes the cookies tough). Plus, he likes to run the stand mixer.
Not only is making Christmas cookies an activity we both enjoy, but it’s something M will willing do with me (I’ll be hanging onto it for as long as I can). Although we usually start baking in mid-November, we were a bit late starting this year. It was actually M who reminded me that we needed to get baking in order to be ready for our annual holiday party. Most years, we bake between 75 to 90 dozen cookies; this year, I decided we’d scale back and make just enough for our party and for a couple of school bake sales.
Apparently I can’t count. By the time we were finished, we had somewhere between 90 – 95 dozen (the exact number is a bit fuzzy as we gave some away before we baked our last batch). We baked 8 different kinds of cookies – shortbread, chocolate/vanilla two-tone roll-ups, mocha sprinkles, triple chocolate chip, smartie thumbprints, white chocolate cranberry oatmeal and of course, sugar cookies cut-outs.
The sugar cookies are M’s favourites – he’s always been the primary cutter and decorator.
I expect the primary attraction for M is the coloured sugar sprinkles, but no matter, they’re his favourite. He always decorates a couple of “special” cookies that are just for him. This year he suggested that we not give any of the sugar cookies away, but given the thick layer of sugar on each one, I decided his dentist would be happier if we shared some.
So what does one do with 90 + dozen Christmas cookies? We gave lots of them away. In addition, to 2 school bake sales (10 dozen to one; 15 to the other), I gave my each of my colleagues a bag of assorted cookies. Plus, close friends and family got a bag as part of their Christmas present.
The cookies saved the on the last day of school when M announced just as he was getting ready to leave that he needed a gift for a classmate – a spare tin and he was good to go. Of course, we served cookies at our party.
And M’s eaten a fair number on his own.
Despite our best efforts, we’ve still got cookies in the freezer. Fortunately, 12-year old boys don’t get tired of eating Christmas cookies, nor do they care what the calendar says. Nothing says Happy New Year like a tasty home-made cookie (or four).