Special celebrations such as Christmas, Thanksgiving, Birthdays and Parties demand something unique and outstanding for your guests to enjoy. The usual offerings can be tired and boring, both to make and eat. You can stop worrying and racking your brain as this article includes a collection of the best ever cookie and biscuit recipes guaranteed to get that "Wow" response from your guests. Call back frequently as more great recipes are added to the collection as they are found, tested and if necessary, modified to ensure the cookies are just perfect and amazing.
Add the flour, rosemary, salt and baking powder to a medium-size mixing bowl and mix the dry ingredients thoroughly. Using a whisk, food processor or portable electric or bench-top mixer, beat the butter with the granulated sugar for about 5 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla and orange zest to a small bowl and mix well. Add the flour mixture and combine well. Form the dough into a flattened ball shape. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside in the refrigerator for about an hour. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C (355 degrees F). Spray two flat baking sheets with oil and line with baking paper. Take 1/2 tablespoons of dough from the mixture and shape into balls. Place the balls onto the baking sheet, so that they are well separated. Bake for about 15-25 minutes, or until the cookies are just showing a golden brown color around the edges. When each batch is cooked remove from the oven and set the trays aside until they cool. Make the glaze by combining the icing sugar and orange juice in a small bowl, whisking until smooth. Spoon a little orange glaze onto the top of each cookie. Allow the orange glaze to set, and serve the cookies warm, if you can.
For the Honey Glaze
Transfer the whole cloves, water, and cinnamon stick to a small saucepan and simmer for about 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. Pour through a sieve to remove the cloves and cinnamon stick, retaining the liquid. Preheat your oven to 180°C (355 degrees F). Sift the flour mixed with the baking powder in a bowl. Using another small bowl, add the oil, sugar, cinnamon powder, clove powder, reserved liquid and orange juice. Stir until the sugar has dissolved. Gradually add small portions of the flour mixture, whisking constantly, until a dough begins to form. Knead the dough ball with your hand. Take dessert spoon size portion of dough and shape into oval-shaped cookies. Transfer the cookies onto a baking tray lined with baking paper allowing plenty of room between them. Bake the cookies for 30–40 minutes or until they are golden brown in color. Set the baking tray aside to cool. To make the glaze, add the honey and water to a small saucepan. Bring the liquid to the boil and then reduce the heat and simmer for least 3-5 minutes to reduce the volume and thicken the glaze. Remove the pan from heat and allow to cool. Dip the cookies into the syrup so that the liquid soaks through to the center. Drain the cookies, transfer them to a serving plate and sprinkle with cinnamon and walnuts and serve immediately.
Options for Garnishes
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Mix the flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl, and add the vanilla extract. Break the egg and add to the center of the bowl and add the pieces of butter. Use a wooden spoon or your hands to gently mix everything together, until just combined into a dough ball. Roll the ball to form a thin disk and use a cookie cutter to create the shapes you want. Or use a Spritz press tool to make star or snowflake pattern. Transfer the cookies to an ungreased cookie sheets and bake for 10-12 minutes in the pre-heated oven. Quickly add your choice of garnishes to the cookies while they are still hot. Set the cookie trays aside to cool for 5 minutes and then carefully remove the cookies and cool completely on a wire rack.
Add the butter, peanut butter and vegetable shortening to the bowl of a standing mixer, and beat to combine well. Add the brown sugar, and cream the mixture until it is fluffy and light (about 6 minutes). Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each one is added. Add the vanilla and complete the mixing. Whisk the flour, 3/4 teaspoon salt and the baking soda together in a medium bowl. Add the flour in 3 portions to the peanut butter mixture, beating only to combine. Finally add the peanut butter chips and stir through. Take 1/4 - 1/2 scoops of the batter mixture and place onto greased sheet trays. Use a fork to press down the top of each cookie making a criss-cross pattern and sprinkle each cookie with a small sprinkle of sugar and salt. Set the sheet trays aside in your refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Bake until golden (about 15-20 minutes in a pre-heated oven set at 375 degrees F (175 degrees C). Rotate the pans halfway between baking. Cook the pans before removing the cookies.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and line one or more baking sheets with baking paper. Mix the flour, 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, salt, garlic, and cayenne pepper in processor in a stand mixer. Add the butter and process or mix until the dough form a ball. Divide the dough ball in half and roll each half into a log about 12 inches (25 cm) long. Slice each log into 1-inch (2 cm) thick disks. Roll each if the disks into balls, pressing each one into rounds. Place the rounds well-spaced onto the baking sheet and sprinkle a little extra Parmesan cheese on top. Bake the the rounds to rack and cool before serving.
Preheat oven to 160 degrees C (320 degrees F). Place the dates, butter, brown sugar and water and into a medium-size saucepan. Heat using a moderate setting until the butter melts. Remove the pan from heat and set aside to cool. Sift the flours together in a mixing bowl with the cinnamon. Add the butter and date mixture, the beaten egg and vanilla essence. Mix until all the ingredients are well combined. Place scoops about 1 tablespoon in size onto greased baking sheets, lined with baking paper. Allowing plenty of room for the biscuits to spread as they cook. Bake for about 20 minutes, until until golden brown. Allow the biscuits to cool on the baking sheets before removing.
Preheat your oven to 150 degrees C (300 degrees F). Cream the sugar, butter, whisky and 1 teaspoon of salt for 7-10 minutes until the mixture is thick and has a pale color. Gently fold in walnuts and flour, without over mixing. Take tablespoon size portions of the mixture and roll into balls using your hands. Place on greased oven trays lined with baking paper allowing plenty of space for the biscuits to spread. Bake in the centre of the oven for 25-30 minutes, rotating the baking sheets, halfway during the cooking time. The biscuits should be golden brown in color when cooked. Cool the biscuits on the trays and dust with icing sugar. Serve warm if you can.
Add the butter to the flour in a large bowl. Rub the butter into the flour using your fingertips, until mixture has the texture of fine crumbs. Fold in the Parmesan cheese and anchovies and gently form the mixture into a firm dough ball. Roll the ball into a log and roll it in the poppy seeds. Wrap the log in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30-45 minutes. Preheat your oven to 200 degrees C (390 degrees F). Unwrap the log and cut it into very thin slices (5 mm, 1/4 inch). Place the disks, well-spaced on a greased oven tray lined with baking paper. Bake for 10 minutes or until the biscuits have turned golden brown. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container.
Add the salt to the flour in a medium bowl. Add the butter and rub into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Fold in the Cheddar cheese, chives and pepper. Add the sour cream to the mustard. Mix well and then add to the flour mixture and mix using a wooden spoon until a dough ball forms. Roll the dough into a log about 5 cm (2 inches) in diameter. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and set aside in the refrigerator for 60-75 minutes. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C (350 degrees F). Grease and line two large baking sheets with baking paper. Thinly Slice the logs into 5 mm (1/4 inch) thick slices and transfer on the lined trays, allowing plenty of room between the biscuits. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until the biscuits are golden brown in color and cooked through. Cool the biscuits on the trays and serve warm if you can.
Remove the stems from the figs and chop coarsely. Add the figs, a pinch of salt, pecans, lemon juice, sherry, honey, apricots, cherries and raisins to a bowl and mix well. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set aside in the refrigerators for 5 hours or over night. Cream the butter, superfine sugar, cloves and brown sugar using an electric mixer until smooth (about 3 minutes). Add the egg and blend into the mixture. Then, fold in the flour and a large pinch of salt until just combined. Add the fruits and nuts, and mix briefly. Shape the dough into a log, wrap in plastic film and refrigerate for several hours until firm. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Cut the log into slices about 1/2 inch ( 1 cm) thick, and place the slices into baking sheets. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the cookies are lightly golden brown in color.
Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa powder and salt into a large mixing bowl. Beat the butter on medium speed until creamy and light in color, using a mixer or food processor (about 3 minutes). Add the sugar in a steady stream, while beating slowly. Add the vanilla, egg, espresso and melted chocolate. Fold in the dry ingredients with minimal mixing. Shape the dough into two flattened disks. Wrap each disk in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2-3 hours. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Roll out the chilled dough until it is about 1/4 inch (5 mm) thick. Cut the dough into a variety of shapes. Transfer the cookies onto baking sheets and bake for 8-12 minutes. Remove the sheets from the oven and cool for about 2 minutes on the sheets before removing the cookies and cooling on a wire wrack.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a square baking pan with butter and line with baking paper so that there is an overhang over two sides of the dish. This makes it easy to remove the brownies when baked. Boil the Guinness in a medium-size saucepan (2-quart), and simmer to reduce the volume by half. Add the butter, salt, cinnamon, sugar, and cocoa to the Guinness. Mix well and then allow to cool. Pour the cooled mixture into a mixing bowl. Mix in the vanilla extract and beaten eggs. Add the flour and mix until smooth, and mix the nuts through the mixture. Pour the batter into the lined baking pan. Bake for about 30 minutes. Cool the pan on a wire rack, and completely cool lift the brownies out of the pan using the overhanging paper. Cut into 16-25 square or rectangular pieces.