Hubby and I took down the last vestige of holiday decorations on Sunday. Not sure about you, but I get to a point where I have enjoyed the holidays so much that when the New Year rolls around, it is time to pack these treasures away in anticipation of the day after Thanksgiving when the whole decorating process begins again. The house looks sparse but that is how it is actually year round, just seems that way – a bit of holiday deception I guess.
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Now with the holidays behind us, it is time to make those resolutions for 2015 and set those goals and hit the ground running again. I am excited for a new year and feel positive for what lies ahead. With that a new group I joined Blogger C.L.U.E. Society is in its 3rd month of existence. Each month a theme is chosen and we are assigned a fellow blogger who does not know that we have them. We peruse their site for a recipe that catches our eye and fits into the theme for the month. For January, the theme is “something sparkly” – think champagne, sparkly sugar topped desserts, even sea salt garnished dishes.
I was absolutely THRILLED to have received Azmina from Lawyer Loves Lunch. Azmina and I have known each other for several years and she is simply a doll. She recently had her second baby which keeps her and hubby quite busy – they are DARLING little guys. Azmina is smart, talented, funny, warm, kind hearted and simply a great person to hang out with. I am fortunate enough to actually see her this coming Saturday since a group of Bay Area Bloggers are getting together for our annual cookie exchange – a bit overdue from the holidays but better late than never. I simply can’t wait to spend the day with everyone. Here is a photo from last year's get together at my house:
Left to right: Lisa from Ravishing Hunger, Jean from Lemon and Anchovies, Azmina from Lawyers Loves Lunch, Patty from Patty's Food, Me, Gina from SPCookieQueen and Liren from Kitchen Confidante
A little know fact that you may or may not know about Azmina is that she was a contestant on Master Chef, season one. She made it to number 16 and then unfortunately was sent home. I remember reading about it prior to meeting her in person and thought it was so cool that she took that leap of faith.
After cruising through all of her simply tasty recipes, I had the theme challenge in mind and selected her Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies. They looked and sounded simply perfect. Instead of chocolate, I made a simple icing and dipped in various sparkly sugars to fit the theme. The outcome just made me smile. Trust me – they are divine and you will have a hard time eating just one.
Sparkly Shortbread Cookies
¾ pound Butter (3 sticks), room temperature
1 Cup Sugar
2 teaspoon pure vanilla
3 ½ Cup Flour
¼ teaspoon Salt
2 Cups of powdered sugar
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1 to 3 teaspoons of water
In a bowl add the sugar and vanilla. Slowly add one teaspoon at a time of water and stir. Continue to add until the consistency is slightly thick but the glaze will drip off the cookie when dipped.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the room temperature butter and beat with the paddle attachment until creamy. Add the sugar, vanilla and salt and beat until well combined. Slowly add the flour until all is incorporated.
Dump onto a surface dusted with flour and shape into two flat disks. Wrap in plastic and chill for 30 minutes.
Roll the dough ½ inch thick and cut into a 3 by 1 inch rectangle. Place the cookies on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes or until the edges begin to brown. Allow to cool to room temperature.
When the cookies are cool dip into the vanilla glaze and let the excess drip off, then sprinkle with your choice of sparkly toppings. Set on a rack to dry and then enjoy.