Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Christmas Baking With a Toddler!

With the holidays just around the corner (quite literally as it's Christmas Eve tomorrow!) I wanted to share some recipes for those of us domestics that can't get enough of baking indulgence at this time of year.

Thanks to the Pinterest craze, I feel like we have a tendancy to see all the pretty things and want to outdo ourselves in the most fabulous fashion possible, but this year I have forced myself to slow down and really take a look at what people enjoy eating instead of what might dazzle a crowd if I manage to get it right.

Having a toddler in tow also means that baking needs to be organised and as quick as possible, whilst still being an enjoyable affair. This year I managed to get everything done in record time and thoroughly enjoyed it in the process, so I thought I'd share in case there's any mamas out there struggling like I did last year!

I make cookie plates for Christmas guests every year. Part of an adapted tradition in my husband's culture is to visit everyone from the village they came from in Europe, and give them chocolates to thank them for the visit and wish them a Merry Christmas. We did this for a few years before I decided to bring my own tradition into the mix and give out cookie platters instead. It felt more sincere and I knew (...hoped?) that they were more likely to get eaten over a box of chocolates.

This year I went with four very basic recipes.

After popping Selene down for a nap, I made up what I would call The World's Softest Sugar Cookies dough, as I knew it would need an hour or two to chill (especially during summer. Still getting used to hot Christmases!). Recipe here. I make these every year and they turn out perfect each time! I do add half a cup of flour extra as I find they will still stay super soft but become much easier to work with.

I have a cousin who can practically make stained glass windows out of icing decor. What she does is beautiful. But with a toddler, it's not gonna happen without either you or your child in tears. So instead, I have been doing a quick drizzle of different colored icings, and then sprinkling with shimmer dust, edible pearls or sprinkles. Much quicker but still more elegant than covering the whole cookie in one color.

Next, I baked some brownies. These are totally from a box. I have tried and failed several times to make my own brownies, and Betty Crocker knows what she's doing. I always have a box of brownie mix on hand, and adding a few green and red M&M's gives it a festive and thoughtful touch to show I cared... even if not enough to do them homemade ;)

Whilst the brownies were baking, I whipped up these Peppermint Oreo Cookie Pops. They are so pretty and so quick, it's ridiculous.
  1. Dip lollipop sticks in melted white chocolate
  2. Untwist a double-stuffed oreo (you'll need the extra stuffing to keep it level), slip in the stick and close the oreo again
  3. Give it a few minutes to set and then dip the whole oreo in white chocolate
  4. Sprinkle with crushed candy cane
  5. Done!
They are the prettiest element of the cookie plates and take maybe a minute each to complete. They were done before the brownies even cooled.

Around this time Selene woke up from her two hour long nap. I had her "help" me make the dough for the next and final recipe - Eggnog Logs.

My mom has made these every year for as long as I can remember, and they are everyone's favourite Christmas Cookie. The shortbread is still super soft and flaky, and the icing on top tastes exactly like eggnog, but better. Mmm.

My husband is on Christmas leave at the moment, so I went ahead and had him take over with Selene from there so I could shape the log cookies and get them baking. If he had been at work, I would have set Selene up with a snack and probably a tablet for the half an hour it took me to finish those up.

Finally, I baked the sugar cookies. I was smart this year and placed them on parchment paper, that way there was one ready to go in the oven by the time the last one had finished baking. I worked with two baking sheets and had these finished in less than an hour due to their quick cooking time. They are so soft!

Once Selene was asleep I quickly drizzled the sugar cookies with a basic, thinned buttercream icing.

And done! All of my Christmas baking done in 4 hours altogether, with enough for 6 cookie plates and a whole tray of leftovers.

One recipe I have used in the past that is also super quick is Thin Mint Truffles. They take maybe half an hour from start to finish and, like the Oreo Pops, look super pretty with minimal effort.

I am loving seeing everyone's baking posts on social media!

Anyway, from my family to yours I wish you a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and can't wait to share my next review post next week!


What are your favourite Christmas recipes? xo, Miss Betty Doll

1 comment

  1. Happiest holiday season wishes to you and your beautiful family, sweet Bethany.

    Giant hugs,
    ♥ Jessica


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