Recipe For Chaos

Real Stories From The Chaotic Front

Christmas Cookies

santa_cookiesI was invited to participate in a cookie exchange at the library. I love baking and the thought of having the boys try out some recipes with me this year was both exciting and scary. It was good that I was challenged to do this as I might have just skipped it entirely. I looked for easy recipes that didn’t have a lot of ingredients or a lot of time leaning over a stove top and came up with some winners.

I talked it over with my BFF Pam via the phone one night and she invited us to come to her house the night before the exchange and so could make  our cookies together. YEA! Well, for those of you in Chicago…This happened to be the night of the epic snow storm and she lives in the country…In the middle of actual fields…on a dirt road…40 minutes away on a good day…But thank GOD its a mini mansion with room enough for the boys to disappear and has a kitchen the size of my apartment!

I loaded up the boys and about 4 bins of sweet laden groceries, turned on a book on CD (about a boy who ate too much chocolate) and we were on our way at 10 to 20 miles per hour. It took us forever to get there but it was worth it. We unloaded and added to the counter full of Pam’s ingredients  while she ordered pizzas. We got to work so well and efficiently the Kebbler Elves were in awe and asking us to take over the Tree Factory. It ended up the boys only contribution to the baking was to unwrap miniature candy bars and kisses without them hitting the floor first and running away from boredom. (Of course Pam’s son George is a demigod to my kids! and God forbid they miss ANY George time!)

We made so many cookies that when we brought them in from cooling and saw them all in one place our exclamations ranged in the Holy S&*% category to the OMG! What are we going to do with all these cookies!

Well, I needed not fear. By the time I gave to the exchange, shared with a neighbor, made sure my step-son Robert got a tin, and brought containers to my sisters for the family party there were precious few for my boys to gorge on. Santa is going to have to settle for cookies from Fairplay!  I fell in love with new recipes that I’m sure will become a tradition and that are easy enough for me not to wait until next year to make.

I’ll share some recipes with you now. Pam’s recipes still remain a mystery to me. Except for the Truffles (to die for!) She was a blur of Chocolate and Candy Thermometers. But the taste…Yum…and the weight gain…yep…that will stay with me! I hope you try some of these. You will not regret it!


Candy & Cookie Bark


    • 4 bars (3 oz each) mint chocolate, broken in pieces
    • 3 packs (from a 4.86-oz box of 6) 100 Calorie Packs Oreo Thin Crisps, coarsely crumbled
    • 3 medium peppermint candy canes, coarsely crushed (41/2 Tbsp)


1. Line a baking sheet with foil. Melt chocolate in microwave on high, stirring every 10 to 15 seconds, or in a medium saucepan over very low heat, stirring often until smooth.

2. Stir in 1 cup crumbled cookies. Scrape onto lined pan. Spread to about 1/4 in. thick. Immediately sprinkle with crushed candy canes and remaining crumbled cookies. Pat in slightly.

3. Refrigerate until firm, about 45 minutes. Cut in uneven pieces. Refrigerate airtight with wax paper between layers.


Peanut Butter Clusters



  1. In microwave safe bowl, melt peanut butter chips and chocolate chips, stir until.
  2. smooth.
  3. Stir in peanuts and potato chips and drop by level tablespoonfuls onto waxed paper-lined baking sheets.
    Refrigerate until firm. Store in airtight container.

Peppermint Melt Away Cookies


  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch



  1. FOR COOKIES, combine sugar, butter and 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract in large mixer bowl.
  2. Beat at medium speed until creamy (1 to 2 minutes).
  3. Reduce speed to low; add flour and cornstarch.
  4. Beat until well mixed (1 to 2 minutes).
  5. Cover; refrigerate until firm (30 to 60 minutes).
  6. Heat oven to 350°F Shape rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into 1-inch balls.
  7. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
  8. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.
  9. Let stand 1 minute; remove from cookie sheets.
  10. Cool completely.
  11. FOR GLAZE, combine 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons butter, 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract and enough milk for desired glazing consistency in small bowl.
  12. Stir in food color, if desired.
  13. Drizzle over cooled cookies.
  14. Immediately sprinkle with crushed candy.
  15. (I have found it is easier to put the crushed candy in a bowl and”dip” the top of cookies in them right after I frost them).
Pam’s Truffles
what you need :
2 1/2 pkg. of bakers semi- sweet chocolate (20 squares)
1 pkg. of philadelphia cream cheese
nuts, sprinkles.. stuff for the tops of the truffles

1. Melt- 8 chocolate squares. Beat- cream cheese with mixer until creamy. Blend in melted chocolate. (we added some powdered sugar too)    Refrigerate until firm.

2. shape into 36 balls. place on waxed paper-covered baking sheet.

3. melt remaining chocolate. Use fork to dip truffles, return to baking sheet. decorate, then refrigerate 1 hour.


December 23, 2008 Posted by | General Mayhem | , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments