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Apricot Bars or Tart - Lois
Biscotti - Hope Hare
Oatmeal-Applesauce Snickerdoodles (egg-free, dairy-free, peanut-free, nut-free) - Linda Laflame
My Grandmother's Pineapple Cookies - Alice Gomez
Biscotti and Mandelbread - Lois
Date Nut Bars - Alice Gomez
Cracker Cookies - Lois
Speculaas, Three Recipes - Jan Kees Beers
Poppyseed Cookies - Sarah Scott
Shortbreads - From Real Scottish Petticoat Tail Shortbread...
Shortbread has been attributed to Mary, Queen of Scots, who, in the mid-1500s, was said to be very fond of this supernally buttery biscuit. It's been suggested that the name "petticoat tail" may be a corruption of the French petites gatelles ("little cakes").
Author Theodora Fitzgibbon offered another theory: "....we rather think the name petticoat tails has its origin in the shape of the cakes, which is exactly that of the bell-hoop petticoats of our own ancient Court ladies!"
             Caraway Seed Shortbread
             Ginger Pine Nut Shortbread
             Maple-Walnut Shortbread
             Butterscotch-Pecan Shortbread
             Plain Shortbread Recipe
             Traditional Shortbread
Oatmeal Craisin Cookies
Sugar Cookies
             Lee Ann Roberts
             David Scheidt

Apricot Bars or Tart - Lois
1 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 pound butter
Blend by hand, mixer, or food processor, and then press in, to line 9-inch square or tart or pie pan.
Bake at 350 degrees til begins to brown, about 15 minutes or so. Prick with fork, or weight down if necessary to keep from bubbling.

3/4 cup dried apricots, plumped up by soaking a while in really hot water, or boiling 10 minutes, then chop them up
1/2 cup chopped or broken nuts, pecans, walnuts, whatever
1/3 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
sifted together
2 beaten eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla and 1 cup sugar, mixed together
Combine filling ingredients. Spread onto baked crust, bake about 1/2 hour at 350 degrees, until begins to brown.
Cool, sprinkle with confectioner's sugar, cut into squares if you're making bars. I suppose you could substitute however you want for the apricots and nuts.

Biscotti - Hope Hare
(Hope reminds us that the word biscuit derives from the French for twice baked. And biscotti in Italian and zweibach in German.)
Beat 3 eggs with 2 cups sugar, add 3 cups flour, 1 tablespoon baking powder and a pinch of salt. Stir in 2 cups chopped nuts. Form into three long sausage shapes on a greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 until golden brown (abut 25 minutes). Then cut each sausage shape into thin slices, and return the pan to the oven for toasting.

Oatmeal-Applesauce Snickerdoodles (egg-free, dairy-free, peanut-free, nut-free) - Linda Laflame
3 sticks (1-1/2 cups) margarine (or butter, if dairy is no issue)
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup + 2 Tablespoons sugar
1 cup + 2 Tablespoons brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
3 cups flour
1-1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
2-1/4 cups old-fashioned oats (quick-cooking oats will work in a
pinch, producing a finer texture; instant oats will not work)
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Cream the margarine.
3. Add the vanilla and both sugars and beat well.
4. Add the applesauce, beat, and scrape sides of bowl.
5. Add the flour, soda, salt, and cinnamon, beat slowly, and scrape bowl.
6. Stir in the oats.
7. Place tablespoonfuls of dough on a cookie sheet, leave room for cookies to spread.
8. Mix topping and sprinkle generously over cookies.
9. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned. Let cookies stand on baking sheets for about half a minute until they are firm enough to transfer.
(Without egg, the dough easily can be refrigerated or frozen for later baking. I recommend this rather than dividing the ingredients in half or smaller portions. Smaller amounts of applesauce yield more cookie breakage. Strange, but true.)

My Grandmother's Pineapple Cookies - Alice Gomez
2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup crushed pineapple, undrained (a 15 1/4 ounce can, if memory serves)
1/2 - 1 cup pecans
Cream together sugars, shortening, and egg. Add vanilla. Beat well. Fold in pineapple. (It will appear curdled.)
Sift together dry ingredients and add to mixture.
Spoon onto greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F about 8 minutes or until lightly browned.
Makes 5-6 dozen small cookies.

Biscotti and Mandelbread - Lois
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 cup cooking oil (corn, whatever)
1 cup nuts
(Mom used broken pecans, and more than a cup, but you can use any nuts)
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla
31/2 cups flour
Beat eggs well, add sugar, mix well. Add oil, vanilla. Sift together flour, salt, baking powder, add to batter, which will be VERY STIFF, hard to work. Add nuts last. I suppose you could add anything you like, craisins, dry cherries, candied stuff, whatever.
Form dough into long loaves on baking pan, about 3 inches wide; 1/2, 3/4 inch high; maybe a foot long.
Bake at 350 for a half hour or so, in middle height oven shelf (not just over heat element), just until begins to brown, timing depends on size of loaves. Remove from oven and immediately slice loaves like biscotti. I like them narrow, about 1/2 inch wide, rather than thick, but Mom made some wide, too.
Separate them from each other, to expose sides. Put back into oven until brown around edges, maybe another 10 or more minutes. You have to watch them. I've burned a batch or two, and ended up scraping black off their little bottoms.
These are hard cookies, good for dunking. The recipe makes about 3 dozen or more.
I'm going to try them with brown sugar and whole wheat flour, to make me feel better when I down half a batch in a morning.

Date Nut Bars - Alice Gomez
Date Nut Filling:
3 cups dates, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup pecans or other nuts, finely chopped

Cookie Base:
3/4 cup unsalted butter
1 cup light brown sugar
1 3/4 cups sifted unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
To prepare filling, mix together dates, sugar and water in saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened (about 10 minutes). Allow to cool. Add pecans.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cream butter and brown sugar. Combine remaining ingredients and stir into butter mixture until well blended. Press half of the cookie base into a 9x13-inch glass baking dish. Spread with cooled filling. Cover with remaining cookie base, patting lightly. Bake until lightly browned (approximately 25 to 30 minutes). Cool and cut into bars.
Yield: 24 Date Pecan Bars
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 40 minutes
Recipe courtesy of Beth Setrakian

Cracker Cookies - Lois
Line a 10 x 15 inch jelly roll pan with aluminum foil. Correct pan size is very important. Arrange one sleeve of saltine crackers in pan. The crackers will fit perfectly.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Melt two sticks butter with one cup light brown sugar in a saucepan; bring to boil. Boil three minutes - stir while boiling. Pour evenly over the crackers; smear with back of spoon to cover crackers.
Bake for seven minutes. Carmel will be bubbly.
Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle with 12 oz (2 cups) chocolate chips - milk and/or semi-sweet. Spread as the chocolate melts. Score while warm if possible. Cool; remove from foil and break apart. Eat.

Speculaas, Three Recipes - Jan Kees Beers
300g flour
150g butter
150g brown sugar (dark)
10g speculaas spices*
1/8 tsp baking powder
milk (to make the mixture moist)
1 tsp salt
100g sliced almonds
Blend all ingredients together till well mixed (add milk after to soften the dough a little) Roll out dough on a floured surface, and cut into desired shapes. Cook for about 15 minutes (oven temperature: 350F)

Speculaas Kruiden
20g cinnamon
10g nutmeg
5g ground cloves
10g ground mace
pinch of ground cardamom
Mix and bake as above.

*Speculaas Spices - used for Speculaas cookies:
20g cinnamon
10g ginger (ground)
5g ground cloves
5g ground coriander
pinch of cardomom
Mix ingredients together

Poppyseed Cookies - Sarah Scott
1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
2 C flour
1/2 C finely ground almonds
1/2 C whole Blue Poppyseeds
1/4 tsp salt
fancy sugar
Cream butter. Add sugar, egg and vanilla and mix well. In a separate bowl mix flour, almonds, poppy seeds and salt. Gradually add butter mixture and beat well. Divide dough in half and roll into logs-- roll in colored sugar. Wrap in waxed paper and chill for a few hours. Preheat oven to 325. Slice the logs about 1/4 inch thick and make at 325 for 12 minutes until the edges start to brown. (mine took longer, even on a preheated stoneware cookie sheet)

Caraway Seed Shortbread
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. powdered cardamon
1/2 tsp. powdered ginger
3/4 tsp. allspice
1-1/4 tbsp. caraway seeds
1 cup butter at room temperature
1/2 tsp. salt
Combine all dry ingredients except flour, separate into two portions and set one aside. On a kneading surface, mix one of the spice mixtures into the flour. Squeeze the butter in your hands, and gradually add the spiced flour, working it into the butter on the board, mixing well. Press the batter into an 8" square shallow baking pan. With a sharp knife, mark off the batter shallowly into "fingers" about 2" long by 1" wide. Sprinkle the reserved spice mixture over top, and bake about 1 hour until firm and yellow, at 350F. Cool in the pan, then break shortbread into fingers and serve. Tastes great when several days old, and keeps well in an airtight container.

Ginger Pine Nut Shortbread
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/3 cup crystallized ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
6 tablespoons pine nuts
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat 2 9-inch-round baking pans with cooking spray.
2. Combine sugar, ginger, and salt in a food processor. Whirl until ginger is finely chopped, about 10 seconds. Add flour. Whirl until combined. Add butter. Pulse until butter is finely chopped. Whirl until mixture comes together.
3. Crumble mixture into prepared pans, dividing evenly. Press evenly over bottoms using glass with flat bottom or aluminum measuring cup to compact and level. Sprinkle nuts over dough in pans; lightly pat nuts into dough.
4. Bake in 350 degrees F oven 20 to 25 minutes, until golden. Cool in pans on racks 10 minutes. While still warm, cut each into 12 wedges. Cool completely on rack. Store wedges in airtight containers at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Maple-Walnut Shortbread
1 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 egg, separated
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts
Heat oven to 300 degrees F. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter, brown sugar, maple syrup, and egg yolk until smooth. Stir in the flour, cinnamon, and salt until combined. Spread the dough into an ungreased 15 1/2-by-10 1/2-inch jelly-roll pan or cookie sheet with sides.
Beat the egg white in a small bowl with a fork until foamy. Spread evenly over the dough. Sprinkle on the nuts and press them gently into the dough.
Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until the shortbread shrinks slightly from the sides of the pan. Do not overcook; you want them to be a little chewy. Cut diagonally into 3-by-1 1/2-inch bars.
Wrapped in freezer bags, these freeze beautifully for up to 3 months.

Butterscotch-Pecan Shortbread
4 ounces unsalted butter
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
In a medium size mixing bowl, beat butter, sugar, and vanilla together. Stir in salt and flour; add pecans, kneading in gently with hands, if necessary.
Press or gently roll out on a lightly floured surface; cut into circles or squares about 1/4-inch thick.
Bake at 325 degrees for about 20 minutes. Time will vary with thickness, so check them after 12 to 15 minutes if they're a little thinner.
Makes about 15 to 18 cookies.
Omit the pecans and drizzle with icing or dip half of each cookie in chocolate coating and sprinkle with more chopped pecans, if desired.

Plain Shortbread Recipe
8 ounces butter (2 sticks), room temperature
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Combine all ingredients; use hands to knead until ingredients are blended. Press into ungreased pans (or chill and roll out to about 1/2-inch on a floured board and cut into shapes). Bake at 325 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until lightly browned.
Cut into wedges while warm or break apart.

Traditional Shortbread
2 cups (280 grams) all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon (2 grams) salt
1 cup (2 sticks) (226 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup (60 grams) powdered (confectioners or icing) sugar
1 teaspoon (4 grams) pure vanilla extract
In a separate bowl whisk the flour with the salt. Set aside.
In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), cream the butter until smooth (about 1 minute). Add the sugar and beat until smooth (about 2 minutes). Beat in the vanilla extract. Gently stir in the flour mixture just until incorporated. Flatten the dough into a disk shape, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill the dough for at least an hour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) with the rack in the middle of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
On a lightly floured surface roll out the dough to 1/4 inch (.5 cm) thick. Cut into rounds or whatever shapes you wish using lightly floured cookie cutter. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheet and place in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes. This will firm up the dough so the cookies will maintain their shape when baked. Bake for 8 - 10 minutes, or until cookies are lightly brown. Cool on rack.
Shortbread with keep in an airtight container for about a week or frozen for several months.
Makes about 20 shortbread cookies.

Oatmeal Craisin Cookies
1 Cup butter, softened
3/4 Cup sugar
3/4 Cup light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 Cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1to 2 tsp cinnamon
3 Cups cooking oats
1 6 oz pkg Craisins
1/2 Cup mini chocolate chips (optional)
Preheat oven to 350F. Cream the butter and sugars until well blended. Add the eggs and vanilla and blend well. Sift together the flour, baking soda, and cinnamon. Add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Add the oats, craisins, and chocolate chips if you opt for them. Stir until mixed well. Drop by rounded teaspoons onto ungreased cookie sheets about 2 inches apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Sugar Cookies
Lee Ann Roberts
This is from Marion Cunningham's The Fannie Farmer Baking Book. I add a good shake or two of nutmeg to the dough before chilling it. The recipe is pretty versatile; you can chill and roll the cookies, or you can make them as drop cookies, roll the dough into balls and bake, or form the dough into a log and slice as you would any refrigerator cookie recipe.
Sugar Cookies
16 T softened butter
3 c. flour
1/2 t. baking soda
1 t. salt
1 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 T vanilla extract.
Cream the butter, then add the sugar and beat for about three minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl periodically. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix.
Stir the dry ingredients together and add to the butter mixture. Beat on low for about 30 seconds, scrape the sides of the bowl, and mix until the dough is cohesive.
Cover and chill about two hours.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Sprinkle a smooth, flat surface with flour and place the dough on it.
Sprinkle the top of the dough lightly with flour. Flour your rolling pin and roll the dough until it is about 1/8 inch thick.
Cut out cookies, place on an ungreased baking sheet and bake 5-8 minutes, until barely browned at the edges and golden brown on the bottom.
This year I made half the recipe and mixed it in the food processor - cream the butter, add the sugar and process, add eggs and vanilla and process, add flour mixture and pulse until the dough forms a cohesive mass.

David Scheidt
Most drop cookies can be formed into a log and sliced. If you're making more than a couple dozen cookies, it's much faster. Additionally, most recipes freeze well (Wrap well in good-quality plastic wrap.). They can then be sliced frozen and cooked later. I keep a few rolls of cookie dough prepped like this in the freezer; I make an extra batch when I make cookies, it's not much extra work. Simply unwrap, slice, bake. It'll take a minute or two longer than cooking unfrozen dough, but not much. You can even do just one or two, if you can resist eating them all. Dough keeps for three months or so, maybe longer (mine don't last that long...).