“When we think of classic American desserts, we tend to imagine apple pie and ice cream. However, the most classic American dessert of all might be the chocolate chip cookie.” ~ Homaro Cantu
Growing up baking was always huge at my Mom’s house this time of year and in a previous life I used to be a professional baker. From baking Kolache, to pinwheels, to merengues, to Russian Tea Cakes, to Spritz, to ginger snaps, and everything in between. Each day it seemed like the house would be filled with new delicious smells and while we would get samples, we always had to wait until Christmas Day to break out the cookies.
As a kid, I would help my Mom bake, and as a young adult, I began doing my own baking especially since I was gluten free. When I moved to New York baking took a back seat and while my Mom still made some of my favorites sans gluten of course, with us all on our own, she scaled back the baking she did, though we could always count on kolache come Christmas morning.
Thanks to a wide host of extenuating circumstances, including the pandemic, my one brother and I are back home for the interim. And my oldest brother who works for my Dad, visits often. Perhaps we all needed some extra vanilla and spice with it being 2020 and the year that my family has personally had. (it really feels like ten years!) It has been said that just smelling vanilla can instantly calm and soothe, and I definitely feel like it does.
Whatever the reason, my Mom has been baking up a storm, filling the kitchen not just with calmness but the smells of what always remind me of Christmas. While I am definitely rusty with the ol’ baking skills, I could not resist the chance to decorate some cookies. Don’t worry it wasn’t that difficult. And my twenty year old pastry chef self is cringing at the fact that I used store bought icing instead of making my own. Oh well.
I had a Zoom Christmas Party and I decided to be festive AF, as well as have some fun bonding time with my Madre. My Mom had found a new gluten free ginger snap recipe from here. I am not a huge fan of their flour mixtures (I hate bean flour, I do not care how good it is for you) so we ended up using King Arthur’s which is less grainy and creates baked goods that taste like they have gluten in them.
They really are SO yummy, especially out of the oven. I might have snagged one or ten. Once they cooled down, we began decorating. I stuck with white frosting (yes store bought) and sugar sprinkles, for a classic look. I thought about green icing or green sprinkles, but I liked the crispness of the white. My mom ended up frosting many of them, while I dumped the sprinkles on it.
It was so much fun. We didn’t do anything fancy as it was an impromptu activity, so I had cookies for my Zoom party. But I am thinking this might have to become a tradition! It didn’t take that much time and I got to bond with my Mom. Not to mention the finish products were SO yummy, and that is all that matter right?
Do you bake or decorate Christmas Cookies? What is your favorite Christmas Cookie?
If you missed it, here are the other Nautical Christmas Links:
Day 1 Blogmas
Day 2 Tips on Trimming the Tree
Day 3 Hallmark Graphic Tee
Day 4 Tips on Wrapping The Perfect Present
Day 5 2020 Christmas Skating Ornament
Day 6 Saint Nicholas Day
Day 7 A Christmas Graphic Sweatshirt
Day 8 Favorite Christmas Quotes
Day 9 North Pole Village
Day 10 Getting Craft: Christmas Elf Ornaments
Day 11: Friday Favorites
Day 12: Advent Calendar
Day 13: Christmas PJ’s
Day 14: Christmas Cards
Day 15: Holiday Activities to do this year
Day 16: My Skating and Christmas Oasis
Day 17: Buffalo Plaid
Day 18: First Snow Fall of the Season
Day 19: Festive Nails
Day 20: Kennebunkport at Christmas
Day 21: Christmas Glam