Baking Up a Holiday Storm
By Desiree Leong, Clarion Staff
During the holiday season, desserts and sweets are especially popular. Many enjoy eating them as well as baking. It may be a time-consuming activity, but its results more than make up for the time spent. Elisabeth Low, a junior, states, “It’s relaxing and because I have a peanut allergy, it lets me eat stuff.” When asked she says sugar cookies are her favorite.
Not only does baking give one the opportunity to enjoy delicious, homemade food, but it also allows one to express their creativity. Junior Lisa Kim says, “Baking during the holidays, especially Christmas, is my favorite season of all; so whenever I bake I get so many creative ideas for my baking, which makes it fun.” Her favorite recipe is cream puffs.
Kamryn Ebling, a junior, says, “My favorite part is the actual baking part because I like how precise it has to be and I like fun it is because you get to mix a bunch of ingredients together.” She mentions her favorite recipe is gingerbread cookies, which she got from her great-grandmother.
Despite their different feelings on why they enjoy baking, everyone has agreed that their favorite part of the baking process is getting to eat their finished products when they’re done.
Baking offers so much selection and a diverse amount of options. Whether you get your favorite recipe from a family member or online, or you do it just for the fun of it or to express yourself, it’s an enjoyable experience for anyone.
Sugar Cookies (Elisabeth Low)
- 1½ cups butter, softened
- 2 cups white sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 5 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth.
- Beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Cover and chill dough for at least one hour(or overnight)
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Roll out dough on floured surface ¼ to ½ inch thick. Cut into shapes with any cookie cutter.
- Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
- Bake 6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.
Gingerbread Cookies (Kamryn Ebling)
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup shortening
- 1½ teaspoons soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- 1 egg
- 1 cup molasses
- 2½ cups sifted flour
- ½ teaspoon cloves
- ½ teaspoons salt
- 1 cup hot water
- Cream shortening and sugar.
- Add beaten egg and molasses.
- Sift dry ingredients.
- Add hot water.
- Beat until batter is smooth.
- Bake in shallow pan for 35 minutes in oven at 325°F-350°
Cream Puffs (Lisa Kim)
- 100 milliliters water
- 60 grams unsalted grams unsalted butter
- 1 pinch salt
- 60 grams flour
- 3-4 eggs
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoon sugar
- 35 grams melted chocolate
- In a pot, combine the water, butter, and a pinch of salt; turn on the burner. Bring it to a boil on medium heat. When the butter is completely melted and it reaches a rolling boil turn off the burner.
- Add the sieved flour to the pot. Quickly stir the mixture. When the flour has absorbed the water evenly and the mixture begins to turn gooey, turn on the burner again. Continue to stir the mixture on medium heat until a thin film forms on the bottom of the pot.
- Place the mixture into a bowl. Flatten it with a spatula and slightly cool to avoid cooking the egg. When the egg is completely absorbed, begin adding another portion.
- To prevent the batter from getting too thin, drop the batter from the spatula as shown to check the consistency. When the choux batter left hanging forms a “V” shape, it is the perfect consistency.
- Dust the edge of a 5 centimeter cup with any type of flour or starch. Then, as a rough guide, make 12 circles where the choux batter will be placed on the parchment. Pipe up the batter to the parchment paper.
- Dampen your finger with water and press each peak of the batter, adjusting the shape.
- Place the baking sheet into the oven (preheated to 390°F and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the baking sheet. Place the choux pastries on to a cooling rack and cool completely.
- Add heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract into a bowl. Mix it with a hand mixer for 5-10 minutes.
- Add chocolate. Mix for 3 minutes.
- Cool it in the refrigerator.