1 1/2 cups softened butter (unsalted)
2 cups white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
Take your butter and eggs out a few hours prior to making your cookies. Provided your kitchen is warm, the butter will soften enough to cream with the eggs. Allowing the eggs to come to room temperature will make the cookies tastier. Take a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Then beat in the eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cover with Saran wrap and chill the dough for at least one hour or even overnight. When you're ready to roll out your cookies, go ahead and preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Roll out the dough onto a floured surface. You want the dough to be about 1/4 to 1/2 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. Keep an eye on them as you don't want them to be brown. Golden is fine. Cool completely and then remove them from the cookie sheet. As the cookies cool down and the next batch bakes, you can prep your icing.
1 lb powdered sugar (about 4 cups or 450 grams)
4 egg whites (or 1/2 cup liquid egg whites)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Optional: food coloring in desired colors
Beat the egg whites on high speed until foamy. Then switch to low speed and slowly sift the sugar into the egg whites. Then add the lemon juice and beat on high speed until the icing is very thick and forms stiff peaks, about 5 to 10 minutes.
Separate your icing into individual bowls and just stir in the coloring you want. So, if you want white, red, green, blue icing, then you will need 4 bowls. Remember as well, liquid food coloring will blend to become a lighter version of that color. If you want a deep red, it's best to buy the food coloring paste. Those will make a very striking and truer color. If you have leftover icing to use, put it in an airtight container and put it in the fridge.
If you don't have anything to decorate the cookies with, you can make the frosting thin enough to paint with paintbrushes. Or, you can spoon the frosting into a baggie and snip the tip. This will work only if the frosting is thick. If it's too thin, it will run straight out.
Is it too thick? Thin it out with some water.
No corn syrup? No problem!
Preheat oven to 400 F and whisk eggs in a large bowl, stir in butter. Then, mix in everything else and stir it up really well. Next, pour this mixture into the pie crust and wrap the edges of the crust with tinfoil. The tinfoil will prevent the crust from becoming too brown and allow time for the pie to bake well. Bake first at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Next, reduce the heat to 350 and bake for another 35 minutes. Allow the pie to cool completely before cutting and serving.
It’s that time of year once again. Summer is fading away as the days bring cooler weather. We find ourselves turning the heat up a notch at bedtime and embracing a sunny and warm afternoon later in the day. This is the perfect time of year to take advantage of butternut, acorn and other squashes to make scrumptious and delicious meals for your family.
Fall-harvest squashes such as the butternut are packed with plenty of nutrition. They are part of the gourd family (this includes the pumpkins, melons and also cucumbers!), however, they have seeds and therefore can be considered as fruit. The butternut is rich in antioxidants. But what are antioxidants? These are molecules that prevent other molecules from oxidizing. When they oxidize, it leads to chain reactions that can damage cells. Antioxidents help to prevent this from happening.
Not only are they high in antioxidants but butternut squash are also low in fat, high in potassium (this could lower your risk of heart attack, stroke, atherosclerosis, etc.), lots of vitamin A, have 4 types of carotenoids, and are an excellent source of dietary fiber. They also have plenty of folic acid and other B vitamins, a high level of iron and rich in manganese, magnesium and calcium.
Okay, so you’re ready to cook up some butternut squash, but how do you know which one is the right one? When you go shopping for your squash, what you want to look for is a nice tangerine hue. This indicates your squash is at its best. It should feel heavy for its size and the skin of the squash should not be glossy; you want a dull skin. If it’s shiny, that means the squash was harvested too early and it won’t be so tasty or as sweet as one that was picked at the peak of harvest time. Keep your squash out of the fridge! If you stash your squash in a cool and dry area, it can keep for up to three months. If you wrap your cut squash, you can keep it for nearly a week in the fridge.
How to prep this odd-shaped gourd? You can bake it as is in the oven (it will be done when you can easily pierce it with a knife), or you can remove the skin. I use a vegetable peeler to remove the skin whether I’m going to fry, bake, saute or steam my squash. You can cut it into chunks and steam/saute it. Once it’s cooked you can mash it up, or puree it to make soup. You can also add it into pasta or just eat it on its own with a bit of butter. Don't forget to save the seeds: you can clean them, salt them and roast them to eat, just like you do with your pumpkin seeds!
Some tasty recipes follow for you to use your lovely squash!
Roasted Butternut Squash
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