Tag Archives: holiday cookies

Young woman using a laptop during Christmas

How to Host a Virtual Cookie Exchange — Plus Tips on Mailing Food to Loved Ones

By this point in the holiday season, festive bakers are busy preparing for a Christmas cookie exchange party or two. Getting together in person this year isn’t an option, but you can still celebrate virtually. Here’s a step-by-step guide for hosting a virtual cookie exchange along with some tips on mailing holiday treats to your loved ones.

Young woman using a laptop during Christmas

Step One: Create Your Invitation and Guest List

First, you’ll want to make a list of bakers to include in the cookie exchange. This can be a small circle of close friends and family or a larger group for ambitious bakers. Then, create an invitation that details how many cookies should be sent to each participant and the timeline that everyone has to bake and deliver their cookies. Invitations can be sent via email or create a Facebook event instead.

Related: Double-Decker Chocolate Cherry Cookies Are Twice the Fun

Step Two: Select Your Recipe

Once the invitations have been sent out, have everyone RSVP with the type of cookie they plan to bake. Bakers should also have a backup recipe to avoid duplicates. When selecting a recipe, opt for a cookie that won’t go stale quickly, like shortbread, biscotti or these stained glass sugar cookies. You might also want to think about creating a digital recipe book to share with everyone or have each participant include a recipe card along with their cookies.

Step Three: Purchase Your Supplies and Start Baking

Check your pantry for baking supplies and make note of what you’ll need to buy for your cookie recipe as well as any parchment paper or other tools. You’ll also want to pick up seasonal cookie tins or boxes to package up the goodies once they’re ready to send. Then, set aside some time to bake your cookies. You could even make your dough in advance and freeze it, then bake them closer to when you plan to deliver or mail them.

Christmas cookie cutters, cookie dough, flour, and beaters from a hand mixer

Step Four: Mail or Deliver Your Cookies

Once the cookies are baked and cooled, divide them into batches for each person on your list. If your plan is to deliver the cookies yourself, package them up in the boxes or tins that you purchased. Line each package with parchment paper and add decorative tissue or a bed of crinkle paper for a bit of fun.

Related: Anna Olson’s Ultimate Holiday Cookie Hacks

If you plan to mail the cookies, pack them well in an airtight freezer bag or a vacuum-sealed bag before placing them in the cookie tin or box. The last thing you want is for your friends and family to receive a bunch of broken cookies, so be sure to arrange the cookies so they won’t be shuffling around too much and add padding to both the container and the bottom, top and sides of the box you’ll be shipping it in. Keep in mind timing if you want the cookies to arrive by a specific date. It’s usually best to express ship these so they’ll arrive on time and as fresh as possible.

A box of cookies with a red top, clear window on top, and twine wrapped around it

Step Five: Celebrate!

Once everyone’s cookies have arrived, it’s time for your video call where everyone can celebrate together and sample the goodies. Create a signature beverage that everyone can enjoy along with the cookies and designate someone as the DJ to play some holiday tunes by using the audio sharing feature of your video call software. If schedules can’t permit a virtual party, have each person share a video greeting with them sampling some of the cookies that participants can watch at their leisure.

A silver tray with assorted Christmas cookies including linzer cookies, chocolate snowflakes and rugelach

Finally, invite everyone who participated in the cookie exchange to make a donation to a food cause in their community. If everyone lives in the same town, have everyone chip in for a group donation.

Looking for more holiday baking inspiration? Check out these classic Christmas cookie recipes that will spread holiday cheer.

Photos courtesy of Getty Images, Unsplash, Pexels and Food Network Canada

Your New Favourite Shortbread: Petits-Beurre (French Butter Cookies)

If you’ve travelled in France, you might be familiar with the ubiquitous Petit-beurre cookie. It has been around since 1886, when it was invented by Louis-Lefèvre Utile in Nantes. The cookies are still imprinted with his initials (LU) and are the best-known product of all the Lefèvre Utile range. This recipe is the closest I can get to my store-bought favourites.

Butter Cookies (Petits-Beurre)

Active Time: 45 minutes
Chilling Time: 1-3 hours
Bake Time: 11- 13 minutes
Servings: 50 cookies (approx.)

Ingredients:

1 ½ cups (225 g) all-purpose flour
½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp fine sea salt
½ cup (113 g) cold salted butter, cut into small cubes
¼ cup (60 mL) heavy (35%) cream

Read: 20 Delicious French-Canadian Dishes to Make at Home

Directions:

1. Place the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse a few times to combine.

2. Add the cubed butter and pulse until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.

3. Add the cream and continue to pulse until the dough comes together. The dough will be fairly soft.

4. Gather the dough into a ball, divide in half and form each half into a disk. If you don’t want to use it immediately, you can wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and keep it in the fridge for up to 3 days. Roll each disk between two sheets of parchment paper until it’s 1/4 inch (6 mm) thick. Keeping the dough flat and between the two sheets of parchment, place it in the fridge for 1 to 3 hours.

Read: These Classic French Dishes Are the Definition of Comfort Food

5. Preheat the oven to 350˚F (175˚C). Line two large baking trays with parchment paper. Remove one of the rolled-out pieces of dough from the fridge and allow it to sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes.

6. Cut out cookies using a rectangular cookie cutter that measures 2 1/2 x 2 inches (6 x 5 cm). Place the cookies on the parchment-lined baking trays. They will not spread, so you can place them fairly close together—just make sure they are not touching.

7. Repeat with the second sheet of dough.

8. Place one tray in the top third of the oven and the other in the bottom third of the oven, and bake for 11 to 13 minutes, switching the trays from the top to bottom rack and turning them from front to back halfway through the bake, until the cookies are golden around the edges but still pale in the centre.

9. Remove the cookies from the oven and, using an offset spatula, immediately place them on wire racks and allow to cool completely. You can store these in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

For more irresistible baked goods, check out these 20 make-ahead options for your holiday bash, Anna Olson’s very best cookie recipes, or our most popular cookies of all-time.

Excerpted from In the French Kitchen with Kids by Mardi Michels. Copyright © 2018 Mardi Michels. Published by Appetite by Random House®, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

These Christmas Cookie Trees Are the Prettier (And Easier!) Version of a Gingerbread House

Stacked anywhere from four to 14 cookies high, these Christmas Gingerbread Trees are festive and fun. Their 3D shape allows them to stand tall on any dessert table, or could be used to decorate individual place settings at your holiday feast. Much quicker and way less complicated that assembling an entire gingerbread house, these cookie trees come together rather easily during this busy time of year. Featuring homemade gingerbread cookies, the festive treats taste just as good as they look, too!

Gingerbread Christmas Cookie Trees

Bake Time: 8 to 10 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours
Servings: 2 dozen, 4 to 5 cookies per tree (depending on size)

Ingredients:

Gingerbread Cookies
3 cups all-purpose flour
¼ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
¼ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp cloves
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup brown sugar
1/3 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup molasses
1 to 2 Tbsp water

Royal Icing
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 ½ Tbsp meringue powder
3 Tbsp water, plus more to thin
1/2 Tbsp light corn syrup
¼ tsp vanilla extract or lemon juice (optional)

Directions:

Gingerbread Cookies
1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, salt and all of the spices together. Set aside.

2. In the bowl of a stand-mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter and brown sugar until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the corn syrup and molasses and mix until combined.

3. With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients in two additions. Mix until combined. If the dough seems dry, add in the water and mix until the dough comes together to form a ball.

4. Gather the dough and form into a disk. Wrap the disk in plastic and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

5. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let sit at room temperature until it is soft enough to roll out (5 to 10 minutes). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or non-stick baking mats. Set aside.

6. Dust a clean work surface lightly with flour. Roll out the dough until about ¼-inch thick and cut out with various sizes of star cookies cutters.

7. Baked the cookies for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the edges turn slightly golden. Repeat with the remaining dough.

8. Completely cool the cookies on a wire rack before decorating.

Royal Icing

1. Place the confectioners’ sugar and meringue powder in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Gently stir to combine. Add the water and mix on medium-low until combined. Turn the mixer up to medium-high and continue to mix until stiff peaks form, 5 to 8 minutes.

2. Add the corn syrup and vanilla or lemon (if using) and mix to combine. If the icing is still rather thick and clumps together, add more water (a teaspoon or two at a time), until the icing holds stiff peaks.

Assembly
1. Thin the royal icing with water until the desired consistency is reached (for piping, it should resemble the same consistency as toothpaste). Decorate the tops of the cookies, as desired.

2. While the icing is still wet, build the Christmas Gingerbread Trees by stacking the smaller stars on top of the larger stars. Use a dab of icing in-between cookies to secure as needed. Attach a small star to the tops of each tree.

For more holiday baking inspiration, these watercolour snowflake sugar cookies are here to dazzle, along with our top 100 holiday cookie and square recipes (bring on the sugar rush!).

How to Make Glistening Watercolour Snowflake Sugar Cookies

Are you ready for the holiday season? We sure are, and these watercolour snowflake sugar cookies are bringing the shine and shimmer for a dose of festive magic. Whether served at a cookie exchange or dessert buffet, the elegant treat’s marble-like icing and glistening edges are unique, while still being incredibly delicious. The best part? Just like a snowflake, each cookie design is quite literally one-of-a-kind. To simplify the recipe you can also skip the glitter; the watercolour effect is sufficiently stunning on its own.

Watercolour Snowflake Sugar Cookies

Bake Time: 15 to 20 minutes
Total Time: 2 to 6 hours

Ingredients:

1 recipe sugar cookies – cut and baked into snowflakes
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
3 Tbsp meringue powder
6 Tbsp water, plus more to thin
1 Tbsp light corn syrup
½ tsp vanilla extract or lemon juice (optional)
gel food colouring
sanding sugar, sprinkles, or sugar pearls (optional)


Directions:

Icing
1. Place the confectioners’ sugar and meringue powder in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Gently stir to combine. Add the water and mix on medium-low until combined. Turn the mixer up to medium-high and continue to mix until stiff peaks form, 7 to 10 minutes.

2. Add the corn syrup and vanilla or lemon (if using) and mix to combine. If the icing is still rather thick and clumps together, add more water (a teaspoon or two at a time), until the icing holds stiff peaks. Use immediately, or cover by pressing a piece of plastic wrap directly to the surface of the icing.

Decorating
1. Split the icing in half. Place half in a mixing bowl and cover the remaining icing tightly with plastic wrap. Set aside.

2. Thin the icing in the mixing bowl with water, a tablespoon or two at a time. Mix the icing and water together until smooth and the icing becomes a consistency that is slightly thicker than honey. It should be fairly thin, but still thick enough to cling to the cookies. More water may be added as needed if the icing does not settle smoothly on the cookies.

3. Dip a toothpick (or the tip of a knife) into the gel food colouring, then swirl the colour on top of the thinned icing. You may mix multiple colours together, if desired.

4. Dip the entire top of a snowflake cookie into the surface of the icing. Give the cookie a small twist, then lift. Gently shake the cookie to allow some of the excess icing to fall back into the bowl. Turn the cookie right-side-up and place on a piece of parchment paper or wire cooling rack. Gently tap the bottom of the cookie to release any air bubbles and/or to help the icing settle. Allow the icing to completely dry, at least 4 hours.

5. Continue with the remaining cookies, adding more swirls of food colouring as needed. The more you dip and swirl, the more the colours will blend together.

6. To add the sprinkle border, thin reserved icing with water until it is the consistency of toothpaste. Place sanding sugar or sprinkles in a shallow bowl. Fill a piping bag (or a zip-top bag with the corner snipped off) with the icing and pipe around the edges of the dried watercolour cookies. Flip and dip the cookie upside down into the bowl of sprinkles. Gently press so that the sprinkles stick to the icing. Allow the cookies to dry right-side-up. Note that it is important for the watercolour icing to be completely dried first, or the sprinkles will stick to the surface of the cookie.

7. Once dried, store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week or so.

For more show-stopping holiday baking recipes, make these stunning stained glass sugar cookies or try your hand at these double-decker chocolate cherry snickerdoodles!

These Best-Ever Vegan Gingerbread Cookies Feature a Secret Ingredient

What makes our vegan gingerbread cookies the best ever? Well, our secret ingredient is love…just kidding, it’s the creamy and nutty taste of almond butter! Whether you’re a fan of a tough ginger cookie or a soft one, our recipe satisfies both by being crispy on the edges and soft and chewy in the middle, thanks to this star ingredient. You can also feel good knowing that you’re eating cookies that have fibre, good fats and a balance of spices that support the immune system. Whether you’re vegan or not, this cookie recipe is sure to satisfy your sugar cravings this holiday season.

Best-Ever Vegan Gingerbread Cookies

Prep time: 45 minutes
Cook time: 12 minutes
Makes: 24 cookies

Ingredients:
Cookie Dough
1 Tbsp ground flax or chia seeds
3 Tbsp warm water
¼ cup fancy molasses or unsulphured molasses
¼ cup coconut oil, softened
¼ cup almond butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 ½ cups spelt flour
⅓ cup coconut sugar
1 ½ tsp ground ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp cloves
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp sea salt

Maple Icing
1 cup powdered sugar
2 Tbsp vegan butter
1 Tbsp almond milk
½ tsp maple syrup

Directions:

1. Make a vegan egg by placing 1 Tbsp of ground flax or chia seeds in a bowl with 3 Tbsp of warm water. Stir to combine, then let sit for 10 minutes until a gelatinous texture forms.
2. In a bowl, mix together all wet ingredients: the vegan egg, molasses, softened coconut oil, almond butter and vanilla extract.
3. In a separate bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients: spelt flour, coconut sugar, ground ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, baking soda and sea salt. Mix well so the spices are evenly dispersed. Then pour the dry ingredients into the wet mixture and begin mixing together with your spatula until a batter forms.
4. Form the dough into a ball (you can leave it in the bowl) and then chill it in the fridge for 25 minutes. This will make it easier to roll out and cut with a cookie cutter.
5. While it’s chilling, preheat the oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
6. Once chilled, place the dough between two long sheets of parchment paper and use your rolling pin to roll it out. It should be about ¼ inch thick.
7. Using your cookie cutters, cut out 24 cookies. You can take the leftover scraps and either roll them into smaller cookies or flatten them out to be cut again.
8. Place the cookies on the baking sheet and bake in the oven for 12 minutes.
9. Take the cookies out of the oven and allow them to cool for 10 minutes before removing them from the baking sheet.
10. While the cookies are cooling, make the icing by mixing together the powdered sugar and vegan butter. Then stir in the almond milk and maple syrup until a thick texture forms. Pour the icing into a plastic Ziplock bag, squeeze out any air, then cut off a small corner of the bag to decorate.
11. You can decorate the cookies with icing, sprinkle a little cinnamon sugar on top or leave as is.

Want more gingerbread? Check out Anna Olson’s best gingerbread recipes!

Anna Olson’s Tips for Hosting the Ultimate Cookie Exchange

Everyone wants a holiday cookie tin brimming with an assortment of styles but often there just isn’t enough time to get all that baking done, even if your intentions are true.

Hosting a cookie exchange with friends is the best way to get a great variety and also make an occasion out of getting together to swap.

Get the hot chocolate (or mulled wine) warming…it’s time for cookies (and I hear there is a certain North Pole resident who is rather fond of cookies!)

Get the hot chocolate (or mulled wine) warming…it’s time for cookies (and I hear there is a certain North Pole resident who is rather fond of cookies!)

Here are three key tips to hosting a successful cookie exchange this holiday season.

1. Make a Cookie Wish List
If you are initiating the exchange, create a list of cookies that people can sign up for. That way you know you’re getting a balanced mix of colour, size, shape, flavour and texture. Of course, invite your guests to offer their own favourites before confirming the list. They may have a fantastic family recipe you wouldn’t know about! Also inquire into any allergies, so guests can steer clear.

Specify how many cookies each should bring. If a group of ten people are asked to bring a dozen cookies for each person, then everyone goes home with ten dozen cookies – perfect!

2. Consider Exchanging Dough
If you are meeting weeks before the holidays, your cookies might be stale (or eaten!) before you even get to your own festivities.

Exchanging cookie dough to be frozen and baked later is another great option.  The dough should be shaped as they should be baked. Icebox cookies can be shaped into logs to be sliced and baked and chocolate chip cookies can be scooped and then frozen.  Each guest needs to include a little card with the name of the cookie with the portioning and baking instructions. This way each guest can bake the cookies as they need them.

3. Have a Decorating Party
When gathering your cookie group together, have a little fun by including a decorating session. Have gingerbread or sugar cookies ready with frosting and decor in ample supply. Let everyone dress up a few cookies to eat then or take home.  My theme last year was Christmas sweater cookies!

Looking for more holiday cookie inspiration? Check out our collection of 50 Classic Christmas Cookie Recipes.

Where to Buy Delicious and Adorable Holiday Cookies Across Canada

It’s not just the holiday season — it’s cookie season, too! It’s fun to make shortbread or gingerbread from scratch, but we don’t all have the time (or patience) so spend hours in the kitchen baking up a storm. Save yourself some stress and still impress your guests with these dazzling holiday cookies that you can pawn off as your own. Don’t worry, it can be our little secret.

bakers-bot-baking-1

Bakerbots Baking

Bakerbots Baking (Toronto, ON)

If you’re looking for beautifully decorated cookies in Toronto, Bakerbots is your one-stop shop. With vanilla, chocolate and ginger cookies as the base, you can get anything from cute snowflakes to custom designs to please anyone. Trust me, there’s nothing more satisfying than admiring a cute, little snowman cookie only to devour him later. If only their facial expressions could change from smile to shock with each bite…

Cookie Love (Edmonton, AB)

As the name implies, this little bakery doesn’t expend their energy on a diverse portfolio of sweets — cupcakes and pastries need not apply. With a myriad of freshly baked cookies, including chocolate-dipped shortbread and carrot cake cookies with cream cheese icing, there are a lot of tough decisions to be made at here.

cookie-messenger

Cookie Messenger

Cookie Messenger (Toronto, ON)

I’ve got to be honest; I didn’t know cookie bouquets were a thing until recently. Cookie messenger offers creative spins on a “bouquet,” packed with everything from gingerbread men to reindeer to bright blue, decorative (and edible) Hanukkah candles. If an ornate cookie bouquet isn’t your thing, maybe go for one of their ribbon-wrapped jars filled with traditional holiday baked goods.

crave-cookies-and-cupakes-1

Crave Cookies and Cupcakes

Crave Cookies and Cupcakes (Calgary, Edmonton and Saskatoon, SK)

It’s borderline impossible to walk into a Crave location in Western Canada and not leave with something sweet. The red velvet sparkle cookies (think gingersnaps, but approximately 100 times more delicious) will be a welcomed gift for any holiday party host or hostess. Oh, and their Snickerdoodles? Well, my friends, save those ones for yourself. You deserve it!

Decadent Desserts (Calgary, AB)

With more varieties of shortbread than you can shake a stick at, and a mix of biscotti, gingersnaps and chocolate chip cookies, Decadent has got your sweet tooth covered. Their uptown location makes it easily accessible, especially if you’re working downtown and want to pick up some tasty treats for the office.

high-tea-bakery-1

High Tea Bakery

High Tea Bakery (Winnipeg, MB)

There’s no disputing it; the decorated cookies from High Tea are cuter than Justin Bieber circa 2010. I know, it seems impossible, but once you see the sweet attention to detail on each hand-decorated cookie, you’ll agree. Christmas trees, snowmen, heck, even custom cookie versions of the whole family, this spot has got it going on for this holidays!

Mrs. MacGregors (Pictou, NS)

December is a time when shortbread truly shines. When combined in perfect quantities and in the right hands, sugar, flour and butter makes for a cookie like no other. Throw in a few interesting ingredients to mix things up a bit and you have Mrs. MacGregors famous cookies. Having visited this quaint little café and bakery, to me, the best thing about Mrs. MacGregors isn’t the melt-in-your-mouth shortbread, but the melt-your-ice-cold-heart friendliness of owner, Helen Buchan.

Sweet Isabelle

Sweet Isabelle

Sweet Isabelle (Montreal, QC)

If you’re like me and have seen the vintage Rudolph The Red Nose Reindeer claymation film approximately a million times over the years, you’ll appreciate Isabelle’s delightful holiday designs. Elves, penguins and reindeer are just a few of the designs you can admire, and then immediately sink your teeth into this holiday season.

Sugar Cookies and Confections

Sugar Cookies and Confections

Sugar Cookies and Confections (Vancouver, BC)

Although this company keeps things simple with their basic vanilla cookie recipe, you can request essentially any design imaginable. Santas, snowmen and snowflakes are obvious requests to make at this time of year, but nothing would be more timely and nonsensical than Darth Vader with a Santa hat on. Am I right?

Sugar Cookies and Confections

Sugar Cookies and Confections

CrushedCandyCaneCookies

Santa-Approved Chocolate Chip Cookies with a Twist

By Kacey Joanette

What screams Christmas and the holidays? Cookies! And what’s better than a cookie paired with the classic flavour of peppermint?

These crushed candy cane chocolate chip cookies were inspired by the candy canes that we used to hang on our Christmas tree as kids. We loved putting them up, but only my sister enjoyed eating them. Now my daughter is at the age where Christmas is a big thing, and she loves hanging candy canes. To help her overcome her fear of Santa, I had her help me bake him some cookies using crushed candy canes. There were enough cookies that we could indulge ourselves while also saving some for that special someone.

Making these cookies is a great tradition I plan to keep up with my daughter, and I am sure Santa will be very appreciative!

Crushed Candy Cane Chocolate Chip Cookies, Courtesy of Kacey Joanette, thecookiewriter.com, Bowmanville, Ont.

These classic cookies with a holiday-inspired twist will be welcome on any Christmas cookie tray.

CrushedCandyCaneCookies

Prep time: 15 minutes
Baking time: 10 minutes
Yield: 24-30 cookies

Ingredients
1 cup (250 mL) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup (125 mL) packed brown sugar
1/2 cup (125 mL) granulated sugar
1 large egg, room temperature
1/2-1 tsp (2-5 mL) peppermint extract, to taste
2 cups (500 mL) all-purpose flour
1 tsp (5 mL) baking soda
1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt
1 cup (250 mL) milk chocolate chips
1 Tbsp (15 mL) crushed candy cane

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In large bowl, cream together butter, white sugar and brown sugar. Beat until light and fluffy. Add egg and peppermint extract; mix well.
3. In small bowl, sift together flour, baking soda and salt. Gradually add to the butter mixture, mixing until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chips and crushed candy cane.
4. Roll dough into balls, 1 tbsp (15 mL) at a time. Place balls on prepared baking sheet, flattening slightly.
5. Bake 10 to 12 minutes, or until golden around edges. Let cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes before transferring to cooling rack.

The Cookie Writer
I am an avid food blogger who loves nothing more than cooking, baking and writing! My family has a variety of dietary lifestyles, so The Cookie Writer represents food for everyone, everywhere.

KaleCookies

How to Sneak Kale Into Your Cookies

By Tiffany Mayer

Kale is the darling of all vegetables, no matter how much cauliflower, broccoli or any other leafy green tries to push it off its pedestal.
People pack kale into soups, salads, smoothies, stir-fries, even snacks. But it also lends itself to sweets. While the mere thought might be enough to make some people cringe, kale in cookies, like these chewy ginger molasses ones, can be a saviour for the over-indulger. The best part is that nothing gives away the kale’s presence other than the odd fleck of green you’ll see if you look closely.

These cookies were a source of comfort when I returned to work after my maternity leave. The richness of the butter and molasses, warmth of the ginger and the chewy crumb provided a homemade, decadent (albeit fleeting), escape from emails and deadlines when I was adjusting to life back at the office. The addition of kale was a bit of a lark after a Twitter conversation with a colleague. But with all of kale’s touted mood-boosting properties (thanks to its folate content), why not throw some in?

Bottom line: these cookies were a hit with my co-workers, which made adjusting to being around them, rather than my toddler, easier.

Ginger Molasses Kale Cookies, Courtesy of Tiffany Mayer, eatingniagara.com, St. Catharines, Ont.

There’s a surprise ingredient in these spicy cookies.

Kale Cookies

Prep time: 30 minutes
Baking time: 40 minutes
Yield: 24 cookies

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) unsalted butter
1 cup (250 mL) coconut sugar
1 large egg
1/4 cup (50 mL) molasses
1/2 cup (125 mL) packed torn kale, stems removed
2 cups (500 mL) flour
1 cup (250 mL) finely chopped crystallized ginger
2 tsp (10 mL) cinnamon
1 tsp (5 mL) ground ginger
1/2 tsp (2 mL) ground cloves
1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt
3/4 cup (175 mL) raw sugar

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180ºC). Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
2. In large bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add egg and mix well. Stir in molasses.
3. Pulse kale in food processor until finely chopped; set aside.
4. In medium bowl, combine flour, crystallized ginger, cinnamon, ground ginger, cloves and salt. Fold into butter mixture. Stir in kale, mixing well.
5. Roll dough, 1 tbsp (15 mL) at a time, into balls. Roll in raw sugar to coat.
6. Place balls 1 1/2 inches (4 cm) apart on prepared cookie sheets.
7. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until edges darken slightly.

Eating Niagara
Tiffany Mayer is a journalist and the author of Niagara Food: A Flavourful History of the Peninsula’s Bounty. She calls St. Catharines home and lives for peach season. She writes about local food and farming at eatingniagara.com, and when she’s not eating, she can be found satisfying her inner boat nerd by watching ships on the Welland Canal, or refereeing three cats and one toddler.