Thursday, December 23, 2010

Holiday Baking!

I love baking any time of the year, but baking around the holidays gives me an excuse to 1: do lots of it! 2: make special things that take more time then usual and 3: give them away. If you need last minute host/hostess gifts, or even an extra something special to give to your friends and loved ones, baking something yummy to give away never fails to please. Home made treats show that you've put your love and time into the gift -- something you cannot get at the mall (btw: I'm pleased announce that this holiday season, I haven't set foot once inside a mall!).

I did some experiment with my baked goods and branched out from my usual brownies and chocolate chip cookies. I tried my hand at making biscotti, guided by Joy the Baker. I made this one, but included cranberries, nixed the nuts and tried to flavour it with this awesome spicy, cocoa black tea. The tea flavour got lost a bit, but the cookies were perfect in every other way. I also made the cinnamon sugar biscotti which were also a great hit. These get extra points because the first recipes is butter-free but still delicious!

I also found an awesome cardamom(!!!) cookie over at Rhymes with Vegan. This cookie is chewy and spicy, and best served warm. The hit of orange juice and zest really makes it special. These get extra points for being vegan and extra delicious.

Last but not least, I made chocolate lavender shortbread as a yummy reminder of my lavender experiment this summer. I used a fully tablespoon of dried lavender and good quality cocoa powder. I totally wish I could send some to Blackcurrent. These get extra points for being chocolately and decadent.

Ok! enough talk! Go bake something!!

Coffee Update:

Crafted by Te Aro: two moccacinos and a double americano enjoyed with a lemon ginger scone and a vegan peanut butter square

Ground Level Cafe: two cappucinos and a double americano -- huge space and they sell used books too!


  1. It was totally my sinuses.... lavender-chocolate shortbread is so good! Congrats on successfully conquering your biscotti-anxiety. ;)

  2. thanks, mia! glad you liked the shortbread. and biscotti is so much easier than i expected! :)

  3. Ah holiday baking is the best Leslie! Now that I'm home for break, I'll be getting my bake on and post lots of pictures of the little treats I'll make. The coffee looks delightful!

  4. awesome, Jada! Merry Christmas and happy baking!! :)