Lemon Berry Butter Cookies

Happy Tuesday!  It’s almost summer and I’m back … with another way to use my new favorite lemon secret sauce!  I’m kind of hung up on berries and lemon right now, but I promise that I’ll be moving on to Nutter Butter cookies, chocolate, cupcakes or some other sweet thing ;)  I’m sure that these Lemon Berry Butter Cookies will put a smile on your face!  The lemon flavor provides a little tang … crystal sugar give the cookies a great crunch and the berries are juicy bites of springtime!

Lemon Berry Butter Cookies

Baking or dessert making has not been happening too much around here lately.  Do you find that you have too many projects and never enough time?  We have unfinished projects up the wazoo!   I’ve been sewing, doing a little gardening, organizing, cleaning and painting.  Our painter (me) finally showed up … as the hubby would say.  I do the painting, because I’m picky … not perfect … just picky about the way the hubby (or anyone else) paints ;)  My biggest problem is that I put off doing the painting … I’d rather bake, do laundry or shop … anything other than paint!

berry lemon sugar cookie

 

Maybe I should stop painting and start exercising, because I ate waaaay too many of these cookies!  Actually, I ran out of paint and need to buy more … have to do two more doors and our bedroom will finally be done!

Lemon Berry Butter Cookies

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or extract)
  • 2-3/4 cups flour
  • Crystal sugar for rolling
  • 1 to 2 cups of berries (I used blueberries and raspberries)
  • Lemon Secret Sauce (click here for recipe)
  1. Make lemon sauce and place in the refrigerator.  (You will probably not use all of it.)
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line baking sheets with parchment.
  3. In a large bowl, use a mixer to cream butter and sugar.
  4. Add egg and vanilla, beat well.
  5. Add about half of the flour and beat well, add remaining flour and beat well.
  6. Roll dough into 1″ balls, roll dough in crystal sugar and place on prepared baking sheets about 2″ apart.
  7. Bake 11 -13 minutes.  The bottom of the cookies will be light golden brown.  Remove cookies from oven, let sit on baking sheet for a few minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely .   Makes 36 – 40 cookies.
  8. Frost cookies with lemon sauce, top with a few berries and serve.

Note:  Refrigerate any remaining frosted cookies, beware that they may become slightly soft (but still yummy).  The cookies are best when served immediately.  Son#3 is not a fan of lemon … he loved the cookies before they were frosted!

lemon berry sugar butter cookie

In the past, I’ve shared that we always have some D.I.Y. project going on.  One of the recent ones was a nightstand with storage for me.  We found this small three drawer dresser at a local Salvation Army Thrift Store that was $40 and came with a desk.  We bought it, didn’t need the desk … so we donated it back to the store.   I may be the painter in the family, but the hubby is the wood and furniture refinisher!  He sanded it, stained it black, rubbed it with steel wool to allow some of the original color to show thru and added new hardware.  I now have a new bed side table, recycled a perfectly good piece of furniture and helped out a great charity :)

nightstand bedside

 

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Oreo and Almond Flower Pops

Raise your hand if you like chocolate!  Raise your hand if you like Oreo cookies!  Almonds are a healthy snack and everything on a stick is fun … right?  Therefore … this must be a sweet, fun and healthy Oreo Flower Pop!  It has all of the necessary elements … Oreo cookies, on a stick, dipped in chocolate with chocolate covered almonds (that means double chocolate!) for the petals and a few sprinkles in the center for a little extra fun :)  These pops are guaranteed to put a smile on everyone’s face!

Oreo & Almond Flower Pops

These almonds came from Costco long before Easter and were kept hidden for this project.  I have not seen them recently, but Jordan almonds, almond M&M’s or any oblong shaped candy could be substituted.

The colors are perfect for Mother’s Day and spring flowers … no green thumb necessary!

Happy Mother's Day Cookie Flower Pops

 

You will need the following to create 16 Oreo and Almond Flower Pops …

  • 1 pound vanilla candy coating (such as CandiQuik), melted
  • 16 Oreo cookies (I used the Spring variety, but any flavor/color will work)
  • 16 wood coffee stir sticks (5 1/2″)
  • 8 green striped paper straws (cut in half)
  • 80 chocolate covered almonds as petals (5 for each flower)
  • 32 green chocolate covered almonds as leaves (2 for each flower)
  • sprinkles for the flower center

Oreo Almond Flowers  SweetSimpleStuff

  1. Cover a tray with wax paper or parchment.  Cut paper straws in half, flatten each straw and insert the wood coffee stir stick.  Note:  the stick will be about 1-1/2″ longer than the straw half
  2. Open the cookie, lay “wood” end of stick on cookie and add a little melted candy.  Note:  the cookie opens easiest when the icing is not cold, microwave for a few seconds if necessary
  3. Replace top on cookie and melted candy.  Let candy firm up.
  4. Dip and cover cookie in melted candy, tap off excess and even drag bottom across edge of bowl.  Lay on prepared tray.  Place 5 almond on cookie to form flower petals.  Chill for a few minutes or let sit at room temperature until totally hardened.
  5. Add a little melted candy in flower center, add sprinkles.  Use a dot of melted candy to attach 2 green almonds to straw as leaves.  Let the candy harden, then tap off excess sprinkles.

Oreo Almond FlowersSweetSimpleStuff.com

One of the first words that I thought of to describe these flowers was “Wonky” … maybe it was a Willie Wonka memory!  Then I remembered that last year I made these “Funky Oreo Flowers” …

Funky Oreo Flowers

I guess that Oreo cookies on a stick, dipped in chocolate turn into fun flowers in my mind ;)

Do you have any special plans for Mother’s Day?  I ♥ your comments! 

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Snicker Peanut Butter Chip Cookie Bars & my Lego memories

Good Monday morning!  Are you one of the fortunate people to have a three-day weekend?  Did you do anything fun?  We intended to go see a movie, but never made it.   Have you seen the Lego Movie?   If this movie was made when my boys were boys … pretty sure that they would have insisted on seeing it!

Legos have been around for a long time and I’m pretty sure that we still have a plastic storage bin of Legos somewhere in the garage!  My boys really enjoyed those Legos … hours were spent building structures, Star Wars spacecraft, castles … they even had motors to propel their Lego cars!  That brings me to my memories … Legos in the carpet … those tiny little pieces that hid in the carpet … until someone stepped on them with bare feet …

P1030644 Lego Cookie Bars

The photo above reminds me of our living room carpet, except we had well-worn lovely burnt orange shag carpet that was leftover from the 70’s ;)

P1030641 Lego Movie Cookie Bars

I’m not really complaining … Duplos and Legos entertained and educated my boys for many years!  When the movie came out … it was my perfect excuse to  finally buy these candies that look like Legos!  (I’ve seen these candies where it’s sold in bulk bins, bags at World Market and online.)

P1030645 Snicker & Peanut Butter Cookie Bars

I sprinkled the candy on some yummy cookie bars made with Snicker Bites, peanut butter chips and frosted with a thin layer of chocolate frosting!  These cookies are made in a 9-inch square pan … perfect size and good chewy cookie with or without candy Legos ;)  BTW, the Lego candy tastes similar to  Sweet Tarts.

Snicker Peanut Butter Chip Cookie Bars

  • 1-1/4 cups unbleached flour (or all-purpose)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 to 1 cup Snicker Bites, cut in half (4 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup Peanut Butter Chips (such as Reese’s)
  • 1/2 cup chocolate frosting (I used store-bought)
  • 3/4 cup Lego type candy (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.  Line a 9″ x 9″ square pan with foil, spray with cooking spray.  (Note:  skip the foil if you plan on cutting and serving right out of the pan) 
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter, sugars and vanilla until creamy.  Add egg and beat well.
  3. Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl.  Gradually add flour mixture to sugar/butter mixture and beat well.
  4. Stir in Snickers and peanut butter chips.  Spread mixture in prepared pan.
  5. Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.  Allow to cool completely.
  6. Remove foil from pan and invert cookies onto serving plate, if desired.
  7. Place frosting in microwave for 10-20 seconds, stir well.  Spread the warm frosting over cookies, use a fork to create carpet looking texture, sprinkle with Lego candy, cut and serve!  Makes 16 – 2″ squares.

Snicker Peanut Butter Chip Cookie Collage

My kids are now in their 20’s and 30’s … Son #1 saw these Lego candies and was trying to convince me to build some sort of object with them … I just smiled.  A friend told me that her hubby recently bought himself a set of Legos!  Once a Lego lover … always a Lego lover :)

P1030646 Legos Snicker Peanut Butter Chip Cookie Bars

Are you a fan of Legos, Snickers, Peanut Butter Chips or Cookies?

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Flourless Double Chocolate Cherry Cookies

Chocolate and cherries belong together like bread and butter, toast and jam, Mickey and Minnie.  I’ve made Peanut Butter Cookies without flour, but have not tried making chocolate cookies … that is, until now!   I’ve seen many recipes for flourless (or gluten-free) chocolate cookies … had to give it a try.

P1030542 ed flourless double chocolate cherry cookies

I made these cookies for a friend that is avoiding gluten and loves chocolate with cherries.  I’m not avoiding gluten and loved these cookies!

P1030545 gluten free double chocolate cherry cookies

They are crispy like a meringue, chewy like a brownie, have chunks of dark chocolate and chewy dried cherries!  FYI, the cherries in the photo are not real.

I reviewed about a dozen recipes for flourless chocolate cookies … many called for egg whites … what do you do with yolks, anyway?  So … I played around and this is what I came up with …

Flourless Double Chocolate Cherry Cookies

  • 3 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Hershey’s)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips (I used Nestlé)
  • 1 cup dried cherries (5 ounce bag)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or extract)
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine sugar, cocoa, and salt.  Stir in chocolate chips and cherries.  note – I did everything by hand, no mixer
  3. In a small bowl, beat eggs and vanilla.  Add to dry ingredients and stir until combined.
  4. Use a cookie scoop to drop on prepared pans.  Bake 11-13 minutes or until tops are cracked and edges are shiny and firm.  Cool about 10 minutes on pan, remove and completely cool on racks.

I used a 1-1/8″ cookie scoop and got 4 dozen cookies about 2-1/2″ in diameter.  This is a very wet and lumpy cookie dough … which resulted in few odd-shaped cookies.  Here are before and after baking photos …

P1030540 ed P1030541 ed

The shape didn’t matter to us … we ate all of them ;)

P1030546 flourless chocolate cherry cookies

I love your comments!

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Peanut Butter & Chocolate Wreath Cookies

Peanut butter and chocolate go hand in hand, especially in Christmas cookies!  These cookies may seem a little familiar to you …

Peanut butter and chocolate wreath cookies

Yep … the same peanut butter and chocolate cookies as the Reindeer Cookies from a few days ago!  Sometimes inspiration comes when you least expect it!  While I was making the Reindeer Cookies, the light bulb in my head lit up and I can’t explain how or why it happened … who cares … it resulted in another peanut butter chocolate Christmas cookie that is easy peasy!

Peanut butter wreaths

 

Here’s the important stuff … you will need a batch my Favorite Peanut Butter Cookie dough to make 48 Peanut Butter & Chocolate Wreath Cookies and the following …

Wreath cookie supplies

 

  • about 1/2 to 3/4 cup green sugar
  • 96 red candy hearts (from SweetWorks)
  • 48 red candy pearls (from SweetWorks)
  • 48 dark chocolate balls (from SweetWorks)

Make the cookie dough and roll into balls, roll in sugar, place on a parchment lined baking sheet …

peanut butter wreath cookies

Bake at 350°F for 11 minutes, remove from oven, immediately place a chocolate ball in the center of each cookie and gently press down into cookie (the cookie will have cracks) …

chocolate wreath cookies

 

Wait a minute or two and let the chocolate melt a little before going forward …

wreath bow cookies

 

Add a red pearl first, then 2 hearts and let them touch the melted chocolate … it will help hold everything in place … easy peasy ;)

After I was done baking, photographing and packaging cookies for friends … looked at the cookies from a different angle and saw …

minnie mouse cookies

I always look forward to hearing your opinions!

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Peanut Butter & Chocolate Reindeer Cookies

Black Friday was last week … Cyber Monday was yesterday … we must have all of our shopping done … right?  I sure don’t!  It will get done, but right now I’m ready to bake cookies and I did.

Do you like those peanut butter cookies with the chocolate candy kiss in the middle?  Well, you’ll love these cookies!  They are not only peanut butter cookies … the chocolate that you see, also has peanut butter filling and they are reindeer!

Peanut Butter & Chocolate Reindeer Cookies

You know that I had to protect my cookies from the hubby and anyone else that came in the kitchen!  I was standing there with a wooden spoon making idle threats … don’t touch the cookies until I get photos!  Everyone cooperated and no cookies (or family members) were harmed ;)

peanut butter chocolate reindeer cookies

I made a batch of my Favorite Peanut Butter Cookie Dough (could be made a few days ahead and stored in the refrigerator) and used a few additional items to make 48 Peanut Butter & Chocolate Reindeer Cookies …

reindeer cookie supplies

  • about 3/4 cup granulated sugar to roll the cookie dough before baking
  • 48 peanut butter filled chocolate bells from SweetWorks (they also have solid chocolate)
  • red and white pearls from SweetWorks
  • a black AmeriColor Gourmet Writer
  • 48 small twist pretzels

Make the cookie dough and roll into balls, roll in sugar, place on a parchment lined baking sheet …

peanut butter cookies in sugar

Bake at 350°F for 11 minutes, remove from oven, immediately place a bell (on its side) in the center of each cookie and gently press down into cookie (the cookie will have cracks) …

reindeer chocolate peanut butter cookies

Let the bell melt a little before proceeding … everything else will stick to the chocolate if it is melted … insert pretzel antlers where the flat part of the bell meets the cookie …

peanut butter blossom reindeer

Add a red pearl nose … place it on the cookie and give it a little push so that it touches the melty chocolate and adheres …

reindeer cookies red nose

The eyes are tricky … the chocolate must be melty or they may roll off …

reindeer cookies

Now you must be patient again!  Sorry to be so bossy … don’t want you to make the make the same mistakes that I did ;)  Let the chocolate harden back up and finish the eyeball with the edible black marker …

reindeer cookies pearl eyeballs

We are done!!!  Shall we sing Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer … oh, go ahead and have some fun!

reindeer got ran over by grandma cookies

I tried to fix that runaway eyeball :)

Are you baking, shopping or ???  I always enjoy your comments!

 ♦  I share my stuff with these fun parties  ♦

Double Chocolate Pudding Cookies with Pumpkin Spice M&M’s

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!  I have a treat for you today … no tricks.  Double Chocolate Pudding Cookies with Pumpkin Spice M&M’s!

P1030280 ed

Let me tell you … these cookies are a treat!  I finally made pudding cookies … seen them everywhere … kept talking about them … so happy that I made them!

double chocolate pudding cookies pumpkin spice m&m's

These cookies are soft, moist and double chocolate … what’s not to love?  Oh, don’t forget the Pumpkin Spice M&M’s, they add crunch and a wonderful spice flavor!  These M&M’s are a Target exclusive item (I’ve also seen them on Amazon, eBay and Etsy).

In past years, I’ve had a difficult time finding autumn themed candy after Halloween … the shelves are filled with Christmas candy immediately!  A few days ago, I saw candy canes at Wal-Mart … yikes!  I am going to stock up on things that I may need for Thanksgiving … maybe it will be on clearance ;)

Let’s get down to cookie making.  Here are a few things that you will need in addition to the normal flour, butter, etc. …

m&m's pumpkin spice

Double Chocolate Pudding Cookies with Pumpkin Spice M&M’s

                                                           adapted from Kraft Recipes

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 package Instant Chocolate Pudding (3.9 ounce)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cup flour (I used unbleached)
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1 bag M&M’s Pumpkin Spice (9.9 ounces)
  1. Heat oven to 350° F and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Beat butter and sugar in large bowl with mixer until light and fluffy.   Add dry pudding mix and beat well.
  3. Add eggs, vanilla and baking soda, mix well.
  4. Gradually beat in flour until well blended.
  5. Add mini chocolate chips and mix well.
  6. Use a cookie scoop or tablespoon to drop dough on prepared pans, 2″ apart.
  7. Place 3 – 4 M&M’s on each cookie and press down lightly. (I used 3 on each cookie, had some candy leftover as seen in the photos)
  8. Bake 10-13 minutes.  Cool for a few minutes on baking sheets, then remove to wire racks.  Cool completely.  Makes 42 cookies.

m&m's pumpkin spice cookie dough

I will be making pudding cookies again … the flavor combinations are endless!

P1030282 ed

NOW FOR THE GIVEAWAY!

A few weeks ago, the hubby and I went to a movie theatre to see Captain Phillips.  The hubby wanted to arrive at 6:30pm … I wasn’t ready … arrived at 7:00 … the 7:20 showing was sold-out … got tickets to the 9:20 showing … went shopping to kill time … found nothing for me … found something for you instead!  So … you can thank the popularity of Tom Hanks for this giveaway …

P1030283 ed

This is my treat to one lucky reader … a few fall things … two dish towels, a silicone spatula and leaf doilies ;)

To enter the giveaway, share your favorite fall flavor combo, in the comments section below.  Do you like pumpkin and chocolate, cinnamon and nutmeg, cranberry and turkey … or just say “Hi”!

The Rules:  One entry person.  Deadline to enter is Sunday, November 3, 2013 at 11:59pm.  Winner will be drawn using Random.org and announced on this page Monday, November 4.  I will also send the winner an email.   Winner will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be drawn. This giveaway is now over.

This giveaway is sponsored by me!

Monday, November 4, 2013 … Random.org selected #18 … Amy Orvin!!!  Congratulations Amy!  I hope you enjoy your prize :)  (I will be sending you an email to get your mailing info, please respond ASAP)

BTW … I loved reading all of the comments … great flavor combos … I agree with each and every one!