Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Southern Lights and Christmas Cookies
Every year at Christmastime, we pile in the car and head for the Kentucky Horse Park. The Kentucky Horse Park is a beautiful 1224 acre park dedicated to horses. The park is gorgeous with it's white fences, tall swaying bluegrass, and over 100 horses of various colors and sizes. Inside the park are riding stables, museums, playgrounds, stadiums, and a campground.
We enjoy the horse park all year round for it's pony rides, but we enjoy the park best of all when it hosts the Southern Lights festival for Christmas. At Christmas, the huge park is turned into a true winter wonderland decked out in every imaginable Christmas light. Once you drive though the display of lights, you can go inside the park for for pony rides, a visit with Santa, train rides, a petting zoo, craft booths, hot chocolate, funnel cakes, kettle corn and all kinds of other goodies. I always feel thankful that we have such a festival of lights to attend each Christmas.
Of course, it's always nice to come home to some home baked cookies! I'm way behind on my cookie baking this year and wanted to submit these three cookies to finish off my Twelve Weeks of Christmas Cookies.
One of my personal favorites were these lemon sandwich cookies, found on Martha Stewart's website here. A lemony cookie dough sandwiched with a lemony cream cheese filling. A wonderful light and mildly flavored lemon cookie that is just the right size to pop in your mouth! If you prefer a stronger flavored lemon cookie, just add a little more lemon zest to the dough and the filling.
Megan from My Baking Adventures sent me some delicious sugar crusted chocolate sables for our Twelve Weeks of Christmas Cookies cookie swap. They were so chocolaty and delicious that I had to try and recreate them in my kitchen. I had a hard time getting the dough to come together and might have rolled them in a little too much sugar, but there were still delicious (just not as good as Megan's). They are a lot like a chocolate shortbread, but with an extra little bonus of sugar around the edge. You can find the recipe by clicking on Megan's link above.
The third cookie is a traditional cookie that my mom, my daughter and I make every year, the peanut butter blossom! This year I tried a new recipe on the Hershey website, found here. This is by far the best recipe I've tried so far. They turned out perfectly browned and crisp on the bottom, while chewy all the way through. I may just have to make another batch before Christmas arrives!!
What are your favorite holiday traditions?