Recipe: Almond Pizzelle Cookies

Mrs. Fields Secrets Almond Pizzelle Cokies
Today’s classic cookie recipe hearkens back generations and overseas. The Pizzelle cookie is an Italian favorite, a thin, wafer-like cookie pressed into a beautiful hot iron to create a delicate look and taste. They are absolutely perfect with a bowl of ice cream (or gelato), topping a mug of cocoa or coffee, or all on their own with a dusting of powdered sugar. The traditional Italian recipe calls for anise extract, which is a black licorice flavor, but you can substitute vanilla or (our favorite) almond extract.

Almond Pizzelle Cookies

3 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 tablespoon almond extract (or anise or vanilla)
1 3/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder

Directions
In a large bowl of a stand mixer, beat the eggs and sugar together until thick and creamy. Slowly pour in the melted butter and almond extract. In a separate bowl, sift the flour and baking powder together and stir into the batter, blending until smooth. Preheat a Pizzelle iron, and spray with nonstick spray before placing a heaping tablespoon of batter onto each form and pressing closed. Wait approximately two minutes, or until steam from the iron ceases. When cookies are golden brown, remove from the iron and place on a cooling rack. Repeat with remaining batter.

HINT: You’ll need a Pizzelle iron to make them, which can be found in most kitchen stores or online.

Recipe: Cocoa Snickerdoodles

Mrs. Fields Secrets Cocoa Snickerdoodles

Here’s a fun recipe to add to your Christmas cookie recipe box, a fun and festive twist on a classic snickerdoodle. The cocoa works perfectly with the cinnamon to create a rich, slightly spicy flavor that you’re going to love dipping into a mug of cocoa or a glass of egg nog. Plus, we added Christmasy nonpareils right as they came out of the oven, which fall into all the soft cracks on the surface to create a colorful, festive look.

Cocoa Snickerdoodles
adapted from Food Network

1 1/4 cups flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
10 tablespoons butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup sugar (for sanding)
1 3/4 teaspoons cinnamon
nonpareils (optional)

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, cream of tartar, baking soda, salt and nutmeg together. In a mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugars until creamy. Increase the speed and whip until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla, then slowly stir in the dry ingredients until just combined. Combine the sanding sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Form heaping tablespoons of dough into balls and coat with cinnamon and sugar, then place on a prepared cookie sheet about 2-3 inches apart. Bake for 9-11 minutes, or until surfaces are evenly crackled. Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle with nonpareils before cooling.

Recipe: Linzer Cookies

Mrs. Fields Secrets Linzer Cookies

All month long, we’re going to share festive holiday cookie recipes with you, some old favorites and some new twists. Because is there anything more holiday than baking cookies? Today’s recipe is a favorite from the old world. This shortbread cookie is doused in powdered sugar, filled with your favorite raspberry (or any flavor) preserves for a festive, melt-in-your-mouth experience.

Linzer Cookies
adapted from Eli Zabar

3/4 pound butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
raspberry preserves
powdered sugar

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, combine the butter and sugar. Add the vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and salt, and then add to the butter mixture. Mix on low speed just until a dough forms. Scrape dough onto a floured surface and shape into a flat disk. Cover all sides with plastic wrap, and chill for 30 minutes.

Sprinkle more flour over the cutting board or pastry cloth, and roll out the shortbread dough to a 1/4-inch thickness. Cut with a fluted round, then cut out the centers of half of them with the wide end of a pastry decorating tip. Place cookies on parchment-lined baking sheets, and chill for at least 15 minutes before baking.

After chilling, bake dough until the edges are a faint golden brown. Start checking for doneness after 10 minutes in the oven. Thicker cookies will take upwards of 15-18 minutes to bake through. Remove baking sheets from oven and place on racks to cool for several minutes. Once cool, spread a thin layer of raspberry preserves on the solid rounds, bottom sides up. Sift powdered sugar over the hollowed tops (bottom sides down again), then sandwich the layers together.

 

Recipe: Pumpkin Roll

Mrs. Fields Secrets Pumpkin Roll

Looking for a last-minute Thanksgiving dessert recipe? A pumpkin roll is a perfect offering after your feast for those who don’t love pies, but do love pumpkin. You probably have all the ingredients in your  Plus, it makes a great presentation. It’s awfully simple to pull off, but don’t worry, we won’t tell anybody. Go ahead and take the accolades.

Pumpkin Roll
adapted from Trisha Yearwood

3 eggs
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon lemon juice
3/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup powdered sugar (plus more for garnish)
6 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a full-size jellyroll pan with grease and flour. In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs, sugar, pumpkin and lemon juice until smooth. In a separate bowl, sift the flour, ginger, salt, baking powder and cinnamon together and add to the wet mixture and blend until just combined. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool for about 15 minutes.

Transfer the cake onto a cooling rack. Sprinkle a thin layer of powdered sugar on a large tea towel and transfer the warm cake to the towel, wrapping the sides of the towel over the cake. Roll the cake in the towel and transfer to the fridge to cool completely and take form for about 45 minutes.

Prepare the frosting in a mixing bowl by whipping the cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar and vanilla until light and creamy. Carefully unroll the cake and spread the frosting evenly on top of the cake before re-rolling the cake. Cover and chill before serving. Dust the top with powdered sugar before slicing and serving.

Inspiring Turkey Trays

Part centerpiece, part meal, these “turkey” trays are a fun way to add some special oomph to your Thanksgiving table. Check them out and get inspired.

The Fruit Trays…

The Veggie Trays…

And our favorite, the Dessert Trays…

The countdown is on! Are you ready for Turkey Day?

Recipe: Homemade Egg Nog

Mrs. Fields Secrets Homemade Egg Nog
The holidays are upon us, which means egg nog is filling the shelves at your local grocery store. This creamy treat is a seasonal favorite, but have you ever tried making your own? Once you try it, you may never go back to the mass-produced options at the grocery store because this stuff is liquid gold! Though not low calorie, it has a whipped lightness that makes it a refreshing treat. Make a batch and serve it at your holiday party with a tray of Mrs. Fields cookies. (We love it with our cinnamon sugar Nibblers bite-sized cookies, but feel free to choose your own favorite.) And one more thing–use fresh nutmeg for best results.

Homemade Egg Nog

4 egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar plus 1 tablespoon
2 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
3 ounces bourbon
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg, plus more for garnish
4 egg whites

Directions
In a large mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks until they become light and lemony in color. Add the 1/3 cup of sugar and beat until sugar is completely dissolved, then add the milk, cream, and bourbon and nutmeg. Stir well. In a separate mixing bowl of an electric mixer, whip the egg whites until soft peaks begin to form. Sprinkle the remaining tablespoon of sugar as it is mixing, and whip until peaks are stiff and hold their shape. Gently fold the egg whites into the milk mixture until the two are combined and texture is smooth and creamy. Chill before serving.

HINT: Leave the bourbon out for a non-alcoholic version.

HINT: The recipe contains raw eggs, so be sure to warn anyone with health concerns before serving.

Recipe Roundup: Our Favorites for Your Thanksgiving

Brown Bag Apple Pie

If you are busy putting together your Thanksgiving menu and need some inspiration, we’ve journeyed deep into our archives to gather our absolute favorite recipes to share to save you the trouble. These are the best of our best, crowd-pleasing favorites that you’ll love to share with your family and friends this Thanksgiving.

SIDE DISHES

Cranberry Jalapeño Dip - An easy, make-ahead appetizer that will wow your crowd. Sweet and spicy and absolutely beautiful too.
Flavored Butters - Sweet or savory, these butters can be made in advance and are the perfect pairing for warm rolls.
Glazed Carrots with Feta - A delicious spin on your regular cooked carrots. Not mushy and definitely not boring!
Mashed Cauliflower - A great alternative to mashed potatoes if you’re looking for an alternative to mashed potatoes.
Roasted Parsnip Stuffing - This may be the recipe to finally decide the stuffing debate–delicious!
Spicy Cranberry Chutney - Say goodbye to the jiggly can-shaped cranberry sauce. This sauce adds a perfect zing to your turkey.

PIES

Perfect Pie Crust - The ideal canvas for all your favorite fillings. Flaky, buttery and delicious every time.
Ice Cream Pies
 - A favorite of kids and adults alike, decadent ice cream pies are another make-ahead favorite.
Key Lime Pie - The perfect balance of tart and sweet and creamy.
Brown Bag Apple Pie - The pie of all apple pies, our absolute FAVORITE no-fail, anybody-can-make-this-pie pie.

OTHER DESSERTS

Banana Pudding - Fluffy, creamy, not-too-heavy, this dessert is delicious and should be made 24 hours in advance.
Basic Cheesecake - A standard recipe to top with your favorite fruit or sauce.
Pumpkin Cheesecake with Maple Cream Sauce - Pumpkin pie meets cheesecakes meets adoring crowds.
Bread Pudding - A comfort food classic. Makes a great breakfast for overnight guests, too.
Peach Tart - If fruit pies are too sweet for you, this tart is like a gift.

Do you have a favorite Mrs. Fields recipe? Let us know!

Recipe: Caramel Apple Cider & Molasses Spice Cookies

Mrs. Fields Secrets Caramel Apple Cider and Molasses Cookies

Here’s a fall duo that will warm you to your toes and make you feel good all over. The warm, rich spices of fall combine in this chewy cookie recipe and a cider recipe that can simmer all day in your slow cooker, ready to serve you when you come in from the cold. Either one can stand alone, but they pair perfectly together. All you need to add is a crackling fire and a cozy sweater.

Slow Cooker Caramel Apple Cider

8 cups apple cider
1/2 cup caramel sundae syrup
juice of 1 lemon
2 cinnamon sticks
1 tablespoon whole allspice
whipped cream (for garnish)

Directions
Combine all ingredients except for whipped cream in a medium-sized slow cooker. Stir well until syrup dissolves into the mixture then cook on low heat for at least one hour before serving with fresh whipped cream on top. If the allspice pods bother you, pour the cider through a strainer before serving.

 

Molasses Spice Cookies

1 cup sugar
3/4 cup molasses
3/4 cup shortening
1 egg
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon cardamom
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 cup sugar for coating

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix sugar, molasses, shortening, and egg until smooth and well combined. In a separate bowl, mix dry ingredients together before adding to the sugar mixture. Stir until well combined and stiff. Roll the dough into one-inch balls and then roll each ball in the sugar coating twice. (This gives your chewy cookie a nice, sweet “crust.”) Place prepared dough balls on a prepared cookie sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove cookies and allow to cool on a baking sheet.

Recipe: Chicken Pot Pie

Mrs. Fields Secrets Chicken Pot Pie

November is pie month, but don’t think that only means sweet. A piping hot chicken pot pie is the most perfect dinner on a blustery November evening. This recipe is super savory, packed with flavor and a flaky, buttery crust. It is comfort food at it’s finest and it’s easy enough to pull together on a weekday night.

Chicken Pot Pie

1 prepared pie crust (store bought or homemade)
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 lb. chicken, cooked and diced (rotisserie chicken works great)
2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
2 medium parsnips, peeled and diced
1 sweet potato, peeled and diced
1 cup frozen peas
1 celery stalk, diced
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, diced
1 handful of fresh herbs, finely minced (dill, parsley, sage, thyme, or your own favorites)
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons dry sage
salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 cup flour
1 cup chicken broth
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 egg + 1 tablespoon water for egg wash

Directions
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a casserole dish with non-stick spray. (Cook and dice chicken if you haven’t already done so.) In a frying pan, saute all the vegtables, onion, and garlic in 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat for several minutes, until vegetables begin to soften. Season with salt and pepper, paprika and sage, then stir. While vegetables are still cooking, sift the flour on top of vegetables and stir for another minute before adding the chicken, chicken stock and cream to the mixture. Allow to cook until sauce begins to boil and thicken. Toss in the minced herbs and stir. Add the mixture to the prepared casserole dish, then cover with the prepared pie crust, tucking in the edges. Brush a layer of egg wash over the crust and cut a series of vents in the top, then bake for 20 minutes until golden brown. Allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving.

Recipe: Homemade Bread Bowls

Mrs. Fields Secrets Homemade Bread Bowls
Soup season is finally here and nothing pairs better with a steamy bowl of broth or stew or chili than a crusty, chewy bread bowl. This fun serving idea is a classic, and easier than you think to pull off! We’ve taken our favorite artisan bread recipe and transformed it into these personal-size loafs that serve as both serving dish and side dish. Try it yourself with your next favorite pot of comfort food. (Note: this recipe requires a dutch oven. If you don’t have one already, it’s time to invest. You’ll love it!)

Homemade Bread Bowls

3 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/2 cups very warm water

Directions
In a large mixing bowl, stir flour, yeast, and salt together. Add the warm water and using a large spoon, stir until dough is wet and shaggy in texture. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and allow to sit for 12-18 hours. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Put a dutch oven in the preheated oven and allow to heat for 30 minutes. While dutch oven is heating, scoop dough onto a floured surface and divide into three or four equal pieces, depending on the size you prefer your bread bowl. (Think four for cup-size servings and three for bowl-size.) With floured hands, shape each piece of dough into a ball, tucking any rough edges underneath.  Place plastic wrap on top and allow to sit until dutch oven is ready. Remove preheated dutch oven and, with floured hands, arrange the dough balls inside, barely touching. (Careful not to burn yourself!) Place the lid on top and put it back in the oven to bake for 30 minutes, then remove the lid and bake for an additional 15 minutes. Remove and allow to cool on a wire rack. Before serving, use a serrated knife to cut a cone shape into the bread. Remove the top and fill the bowl with your favorite soup and serve.

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