Hello, my friends!
I’ve been spending a lot of time at the wine shop lately. ‘Tis the season for catering, so I’m usually in the kitchen, elbow-deep in cocktail meatballs, or driving to an event with half a ton of caramelized onion dip in my trunk. It’s fun to see people ring in the holidays with food and drink, but if I have to wrap another goddamn piece of bacon around another goddamn date, I’m going to collapse in on myself like a goddamn dying star.
Scott might have some choice words about the catering business, too. The other night he woke up at 3 a.m. shouting, “GET UP! GET UUUUUUP!! THERE’S AN ONION IN BED WITH US! AN ONION!” I patted him on the back and told him it was just a nightmare, but after he fell back asleep I took a whiff of myself and realized. . .
I AM THE ONION. Especially my hair, which smells like it’s been rinsed with volumizing scallion conditioner.
Speaking of Scott, he gave me his Christmas list the other day. This is what he wants:
- some electroluminescent wire
- an ultrasonic arduino
- a passive infrared motion sensor
- an oscilloscope
I don’t want to kill the magic or the season or anything, but SANTA NO UNDERSTAND. In fact, Santa’s probably going to do the same thing she did last year, which is sit down on Christmas morning and buy him a $50 Amazon gift card.
In other news, I made a gingerbread house using this recipe. I’m going to enter it in movita’s annual competition for goofballs. This is the competition I lose every year, usually to a 6-year-old with advanced motor skills. This year is going to be different, though, because I got 50 people to help me think of a good theme for my house. FIFTY PEOPLE. All I had to do was stand by the buffet at Scott’s work holiday party and demand that everyone give me three ideas before touching the food. It was so easy, you guys. People will tell you anything for an egg roll these days.Anyway, when it comes to my sister-in-law, Lily, no egg rolls are needed. She just tells me things–like her recipe for Russian tea cakes–for free. Lily’s family used to have a bakery. And not just any bakery–a bakery that TINA FEY went to all the time when she was in college. TINA FREAKING FEY, you guys. I don’t know about you, but her approval (or even her ambivalence, or her raised eyebrow) trumps a hundred James Beard Awards in my book.
Lily’s been digging up recipes from the old bakery and adjusting them for small batch home kitchens. These cookies are one of my favorite things on her website. They melt in your mouth. They’re kind of rustic looking, so you can stack them in a container without worrying that they’re going to get messed up in transit. You can actually make two other cookies with this dough, too: thumbprint cookies and chocolate chip shortbreads. (For those instructions, hop over here to an article I did for Life & Beauty Weekly.)Enjoy, my friends! And hit me with good cookie recipes in the comments, will you? I have to bake a bunch more before the weekend.
1 c. butter, softened
1/2 c. powdered sugar (plus more for rolling the cookies in once they’re done)
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. salt
2 1/2 c. flour
2/3 c. finely chopped walnuts or pecans
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Cream the butter and the sugar together in a mixer. Add the vanilla and salt and continue to mix. Add the flour and mix until the flour is gone and the dough comes together. It will be on the dry side, but that’s normal. Add the nuts and mix until evenly combined.
Pinch off some dough and roll it in your palms to make a ball 1 1/2″ to 2″ wide. Place the cookie balls on a baking sheet sheet (preferably one lined with parchment paper). The dough won’t spread very much, so you only need an inch or so between cookies. Bake 10-12 minutes.
Once the cookies are cool, roll them one at a time in a small bowl of powdered sugar.