Christmas isn’t here yet and I’m already worn out, don’t you feel a bit the same?
It’s going to be lots of days with parties, dinners, decorations, gathering, groups of invisible friends. In fact, I already have three invisible friends to make presents to and a possible fourth which hasn’t been raffled yet, although I’m thinking about skipping this last one because I already feel overwhelmed having to think about so many friends and so many presents, but I am excited about it at the same time. Arghhhh what should I do? Do you feel the same?
Yes, it’s a wonderful time to share with family and friends, but all involved in it is also stressful.
I am exhausted and Christmas is still three weeks away.
I’m fortunate to have lots of family and friends, and I am very thankful for this. I love watching the face of my children enjoying the holidays with the family and expecting their presents. But for me, and I think for many people too, this period of the year is also hard, apart from being wonderful as well. It’s a condensed period filled with great moments and also with emotional overwhelm, with lots of things to do and think. Moments to celebrate with the people I love, and I’m very excited this year because I feel extremely happy I will be spending the holidays with my new love. But there are also moments to remember those people who are not here and I wish they were.
With all this exhaustion, I’ve had time to bake Christmas cookies which we will decorate with the children, mine and his, during the days off we will have next week. It’s so great to have some days off just before the Christmas holidays, thanks!!!
These cookies are very easy, although it’s important to be accurate with the measurements and bake them with the dough still cold. This way, the shapes of the cookies will stay and they won’t flatten in the oven.
200 g unsalted butter, at room temperatura
200 g caster sugar
400 g flour
Vanilla cookies: add vanilla extract
Lemon cookies: add grated lemon zest
Orange cookies: add grated orange zest
Chocolate cookies: replace 50 g of the flour with 50 g of cocoa powder.
In a bowl, cream the butter with the aid of an electric mixer, until obtaining a creamy and white mixture. Add the sugar and the chosen flavoring until obtaining a uniform cream. Mix in the beaten egg (if you want to make color cookies, you can add food color now). Add the flour using the mixer at low speed in three addition, until making a firm dough.
Make a ball with this dough and wrap it in film. Let it cool in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
Preheat the oven at 180ºC (160ºC if you use the oven fan)
Place the dough on a floured surface and roll it out using a rolling pin until having a two ½ inch (5 mm) thickness. To achieve an even thickness you can use guides on the rolling pin, or you can use two cutting boards as guides: the boards on the sides, the dough in the middle, and the rolling pin lying on these boards.
Use a cookie cutter to cut out the shapes of your choice. Lay the cookies on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper, and leave a distance of 3-4 cm between them because they tend to grow a little in the oven.
Bake for 12 minutes approximately, or until white in the middle and a bit golden at the edges. When they come out of the oven it seems that they are not done enough, but when they cool they get harder and they are perfect.
Once the cookies are cold, they can be decorated with icing, or with fondant.