Christmas Baking Extravaganza 2011

Yesterday commenced my baking extravaganza for Christmas. I love to bake, and my mom has all but stopped using her kitchen, so it falls on me to supply our celebration with a tray of tasty treats. I’ll also make up a tray to bring to my in-laws, and one for work, and I’m sure Ryan won’t mind having leftovers to finish off after the holidays. My original plan wasn’t for a day long extravaganza, but to make a recipe or two each day this week. But once I get started yesterday I decided to to jump right in and try to finish it all.  And I got close, only one batch of cookies had to be finished this morning.

I started bright and early yesterday morning, going over my planned recipes, making a list of ingredients, and then figuring out what I had on hand. By 11:30 I had a list together and we were ready to shop. After Target and a brief stop at the liquor store, we hit Wal-mart.  Now,  I hate Wal-Mart on the best of days and I knew it would be busy, but I thought it gave me the best chance of finding everything I needed in one stop. I was, however, completely unprepared for the chaos that was the baking aisle on the Saturday before Christmas. And I still didn’t procure everything I needed. Who knew hazelnuts and petit four cups would be so hard to find? So then it was off to Econofoods, one of the few stores I dislike more than Wal-mart, but at least they had what I needed.

We got home around 3 and I immediately set to work on peanut butter cups. They are better than Reese’s and everyone loves them but they are a pain in the pattootee to make.  After that I made homemade Twix bars from a recipe I saw on Pinterest. Then, for something new, I tried a truffle recipe from Cook’s Illustrated magazine, with mixed results. So I decided  it was time for something idiot proof and made some pretzel kisses and rolos. I hadn’t tried the rolos before, but how could rolos, pretzels and pecans be bad? After a late dinner (the hubby made lasagna, so yummy, but it wasn’t ready until 11:00, mostly because I was hogging the kitchen), I tackled gingersnaps. The last batch of those came out of the oven at midnight and I decided to call it quits. I got up this morning and made cran-pistachio cookies, another Pinterest find.

All in all I would say it was a success. I will post pics and recipes as separate posts so you can see all the yumminess.

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