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Sunday, December 4, 2011

This Week's Christmas Cookies

I promised I would post the results of Thursday's baking whether successful or not! Inside it was a wonderful warm day of baking while outside it continued to snow, snow, snow. Since I didn't have to leave the house, it was heaven!

I did get two types of cookies completed. Both are simple and have had rave reviews. My puzzle and challenge for the day was the Peanut Butter Blossoms. No they are not difficult cookies but again, the altitude took some adjustment.

Before baking I re-read the information I have gathered about baking at high altitude. One article was especially helpful and stands out above the others. Altitude Adjustment  written by Wendy Rice of the La Plata County Cooperative Extension gave me just the boost I needed to approach my baking in an organized manner (once a teacher and scientist, always a teacher and scientist!). Wendy suggested that when you are baking cookies at high altitude you most often just need to try the recipe first and see if you have problems. Then if some nasty issue arrises, adjust the recipe. That made all the sense in the world and I had plenty of time so that is how I chose to approach my baking.

So of course, when my Peanut Butter Blossoms came out flat (splat), I took Wendy's advise and raised the baking temperature to 380 degrees (only 5 degrees higher). Now since I've never been one to follow all the rules (rule #1: only change one thing at a time, so you know what worked) and am basically an impatient person, I ALSO decided the rolled balls of dough were too large and cut them down. Success! Look at the difference! They are not as lovely as the ones on the Hershey site but they are so much better.

Most important of all they tasted fantastic whether flat or not! I hope you will be baking a simple batch of Peanut Butter Blossoms at your home for the holidays, but if not, please share your favorite holiday baking projects.

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