*phew!* Another Christmas tradition completed. I know sugar is bad, I know it makes my kids hyper…but dang it…I’m gonna make Christmas cookies with them! This year was no exception, and TODAY was deemed “Cookie Day”. (Say it the way Stanley from The Office says “Pretzel Day” and we will be friends forever.)
A few years ago my kids were asking to make cookies, and as we tried one recipe at a time, the fighting over the bowl, spoons, mixer, and flour got to be too much for me! I had to come up with a different plan. That’s when I decided it would actually be easier if we made 4 types of cookies at a time. Yes, you read this right, four kids making four types of cookies simultaneously. Know what? It’s actually a lot easier than one batch at a time. Here’s how I do it:
It’s all about the set up.
I have a small kitchen table in my kitchen, I set one child on each end, and two on one side. I stand on the other. Each child chooses the one type of cookie that they want to make, and I put the recipe for that cookie in front of ME, in the order of how the kids are sitting around the table. Each child gets two mixing bowls, a wooden spoon, and a rubber spatula.
I start with the dry ingredients. Usually flour is the place to start, I go child by child, helping them measure out the amount of flour each of their own recipes call for, then the salt, baking soda, etc into their larger mixing bowls. Then we follow that with the wet ingredients in their smaller mixing bowls. They each mix with their wooden spoons as I’m helping with the other kids. Once all the ingredients are measured, then I have them put the wet ingredients into their big bowls of dry ingredients to stir. I take those bowls when they have had a chance to stir them on their own, and mix them with my wonderful KitchenAide mixer.
Into the oven
The process described above takes about 30 minutes, at which time I have four bowls of cookie dough. I have a regular sized oven, so what I do is have each child take turns. One child will help me fill two cookie sheets of THEIR cookie dough, and then I put it in the oven. When that batch is done, and the pans are cooled, I have the next child help get their cookies onto the cookie sheets.
The only batch of cookies I can’t cook right away, is the sugar cookies, as my recipe has us put the dough in the refrigerator for a few hours. Generally, that recipe yields the most cookies, so I’m able to divide the dough four ways, giving each child about one sheet of cookies they can decorate on their own. This year, we ran out of time to bake them before life happened and baking had to give way to dinner and dishes. The plan now, is to decorate and bake the cookies tomorrow.
Generally, we don’t eat all the cookies, I give some away as gifts, and bring the rest to family Christmas. But don’t let that fool you, we can eat a whole bunch of cookies! What are your favorite cookie recipes?