Holiday Recipes from the Honeywell Team

 
Jill Carraway, Marketing Publications Writer
I’ve always enjoyed baking; one of my first memories is helping my grandmother bake bread. Today, I bake all my own bread and also enjoy making treats for friends and co-workers. These cookies are a favorite:

White Chocolate/Cherry Cookies
1 ¼ cups flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1 ½ sticks butter, softened
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup dried cherries
1 cup coarsely chopped macadamia nuts
1 cup white chocolate chips (or 2 white chocolate bars chopped up)

  1. Preheat oven to 350° and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Mash the butter and sugars together in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Beat in the egg, vanilla and almond extracts.
  4. Mix in the flour, soda and salt and smear it all around until well blended.
  5. Fold in whatever cherries, nuts and chocolate chips you haven’t eaten while you were waiting for your butter to come to room temperature.
  6. Put blops of the dough (about the size of a walnut) about 3” apart onto cookie sheets.
  7. Bake one sheet at a time until cookies are light brown, about 15 minutes. Let them sit a couple of minutes and then move them to a cooling rack.
  8. Have the milk ready! If any of them break while you’re removing them from the pan you must eat those immediately. I try to break at least six of them.

 

Maura Jennings-Castelli, Graphic Designer

Every year for Christmas, my Aunt Connie makes these beautiful plates of baked goodies for everyone. As you eat your way through all the homemade cookies and chocolates around the plate, you get to this cellophane-wrapped banana bread in the center. This photo is her threatening me not to give her recipe away…well, I said to myself anything that good needs to be blogged. This Christmas I will be taking on Aunt Connie for everyone reading the blog…she is small, but she is strong. Enjoy…I may not see New Year’s.

Aunt Connie’s “You Better Not Give this Recipe Away” Banana Bread

1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
2 eggs
3/4 cup corn oil
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 teaspoons orange juice
7 large ripe mashed banana
1/2 cup walnuts
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup crushed bran flakes

  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly butter grease a 12 x 4 1/2 x 4 inch loaf pan. (You can usually get this odd shaped pan in a kitchenware shop.) Or use 3 mini-loaf pans.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together sugar, eggs and oil. Add sour cream, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and orange juice. Stir until well blended.
  3. Add mashed bananas to mixture.
  4. Add walnuts, flour and bran flakes, mix well
  5. Scrape batter into prepared loaf pan(s) and bake 50 to 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

 

Marie Pletenycky, Senior Event Coordinator
I love to bake around the Christmas holiday and love to try new recipes. This recipe is one of my favorites since I am a big fan of peanut butter and chocolate, and they are really easy to make!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip Cookies
2 ¼ cups of flour
2/3 cup of cocoa
1 teaspoon of baking soda
¼ teaspoon of salt
1 cup of butter softened
¾ cup sugar
2/3 cup of brown sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla
2 eggs
2 cups of peanut butter chips

  1. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in a bowl and set aside.
  2. Beat butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla in a large bowl until creamy.
  3. Beat in eggs until well blended.
  4. Gradually add the flour mixture until combined.
  5. Stir in peanut butter chips.
  6. Bake in 350° oven for 9 to 11 minutes until centers are set.
  7. Cool on cookie sheets for a couple of minutes and then remove to wire cooling rack to cool completely.
  8. Store in air tight container.

 

Lourdes Pena, Business Communication Leader, ACS
I grew up eating Fig Newton cookies and absolutely love them. Who doesn’t? They are rich, chewy and sweet. So when I took up baking a few years ago, I wanted to give this American tradition an elegant twist, something different I can bake and serve during the holidays with some flair. Inspired by the Sicilian Cuccidati, cookies made with figs, dates and chocolate, I tweaked this recipe a few times until I hit the right note. My family craves them and, as I share with more friends and loved ones, the requests keep coming in. I hope your loved ones love ‘em as much as mine do! Enjoy!

Fig Cookies with Walnuts and Apricots
Inspired by Sicilian Cuccidati and Giada Di Laurentis’ Fig Cookie Recipe.
Serves: 3 dozen

Pastry Dough:
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour (plus 1/4 cup for rolling)
2/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

Filling:
9 ounces dried Mission figs, stems discarded, chopped
1/3 cup dried apricots, chopped
3/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons orange or lemon juice

2 tablespoons Grand Marnier
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon (Vietnamese if possible)
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg (freshly grated)
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 cup walnuts, chopped finely
1 large egg, beaten to blend

For the pastry dough:

In a small bowl, whisk the eggs with the vanilla. Add the flour, sugar, lemon zest, and salt to the food processor and pulse a few seconds to mix. Add the butter and pulse for about 30 seconds until the butter is the size of small peas. Pulse while adding the egg mixture slowly until the dough gathers into a ball. Place the ball on a flat floured surface, divide it in two and flatten into disks. Do not over work them. Wrap the disks in plastic and refrigerate for one hour or longer if needed.

For the filling and cookies:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Line two heavy large baking sheets with parchment paper. Chop the figs and apricots in a food processor until very small. Add honey, orange/lemon juice, Grand Marnier, cinnamon, nutmeg and lemon zest, and pulse just to blend. Scrape the fig mixture into a medium bowl. Stir in the walnuts. Transfer the fruit mixture to a pastry bag. NOTE: If you prefer smaller pieces of walnuts, pulse them in food processor prior to making fig mixture.

For the egg wash, break the egg into a small bowl, add a little water and whisk until blended.

On a flat, floured surface, roll out one disk of dough to about 1/8 to 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 3-inch diameter biscuit or cookie cutter, cut out dough rounds. Save the dough scraps into a ball, cover with plastic and refrigerate while assembling the cookies. Pipe the fig mixture in the center of each dough round. Using a pastry brush, lightly moisten the edges of the dough with the egg wash. Fold the dough over the filling and press the edges to seal. Place the cookies an inch apart on the lined baking sheets. Brush them with egg wash. Bake until light golden, about 18-20 minutes.

Cool the cookies on the baking sheet for 5 minutes. Transfer the cookies to a cooling rack and cool completely. Repeat with the refrigerated dough and remaining filling.