If you are planning to send a care package of cookies through the mail this holiday season, you want a cookie that travels well and one that doesn t end up dried out and crumbly.
Start with a basic recipe such as Sour Cream Sugar Cookies. Rolled cookies with round shapes seem to travel better than cut-out cookies and smaller cookies are less likely to break or crumble.
Too much flour can also make cookies crumble. Too much shortening makes a cookie too tender and it can fall apart in your hand. Cookies made with brown sugar or sour cream seem to be sturdy products that can withstand travel. Cookies with honey, molasses or fruit stay moist longer.
In the intense heat of some climates, chocolate will melt. Avoid sending chocolate bars or chocolate-covered cookies. Since chocolate chip cookies are a favorite, the small chocolate chip pieces may fare better.
Some people make cookies the size of the width of a Pringle potato-chip; then the cans can be filled with cookies and will travel without the sender having to wrap cellophane around each cookie. A good way to send cookies is to wrap two cookies in a piece of plastic wrap. Then stack the wrapped pairs between two Styrofoam trays. Repeat the procedure in layers, then box securely.
Sour Cream Sugar Cookies
1 cup butter or margarine
1 cups sugar
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoons vanilla
4 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon soda
Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and beat well. Add sour cream and vanilla and blend well. Sift dry ingredients together and add to sour cream mixture. Chill for several hours. Roll dough -inch thick and cut out with a 2-inch round cookie cutter. Bake for 12 minutes on lightly greased sheet in a 375-degree oven.
Yield: 4 to 5 dozen
However, Penta Career Center student Rachel Travillian of Genoa placed in the top 10 in the Teen division, he said.
The 11th grader in the Culinary Arts Program made a gingerbread replica of Hagrid s Hut from the Harry Potter books. Chef Rhegness took her entry to the competition for her.
First-place winners in the adult division were Bobbie Jinright and Betsy Leigner from Troy, Ala. The sister trio of Sarah, Hannah, and Chloe Engle from Bryson City, N.C., won first place in the Teen 13-17 age group, and Angelique Arthur from Easley, S.C., won first place in the Youth 12 and under category.
The gingerbread houses will remain on display through the holidays on the 7th floor of the Vanderbilt Atrium. It is open to the public.
New Orleans Christmas
Throughout December New Orleans restaurants will feature Reveillon, an adaptation of the old Creole holiday dining custom. Each will offer prix fixe menus ranging from under $25 to $60 with a minimum of four courses. Regional foods include Louisiana Oyster Chowder at Bourbon House, Creole Turtle Soup at Besh Steakhouse, Stuffed Mississippi Quail at Begue s, and Louisiana Bouillabaisse at Dickie Brennan s Steakhouse.
Foodies interested in preparing their own Reveillon meal can attend the free daily cooking demonstrations by many of the city s top chefs.
Each demonstration is at Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carre and is open to the public.
For more information, visit www.NewOrleansOnline.com.
The 13-Action News Turkey Hotline hosted by Christa Quinn, weekend weathercaster, will be featured during the 5 to 6:30 p.m. newscasts on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
Each day area chefs and food experts will answer questions from viewers calling the phone numbers listed on the newscast.
I will be participating on Tuesday answering questions from the demonstration kitchen at Gourmet Curiosities in Sylvania. Also answering questions are:
Monday: Art Lorenz, chef at Churchill s Briarfield; John Wesley of Mancy s Italian; Don Ciephichal, wine manager at the Vineyard, and Christine Wilson, owner of Gourmet Curiosities.
Tuesday: Art Lorenz, Mike Rosendaul of Real Seafood, Kathie Smith, and Christine Wilson.
Wednesday: Art Lorenz, Jeff Harmon, executive chef of J. Alexander s Toledo; Mike Peak, executive chef J. Alexander s Livonia, Mich., and Christine Wilson.
Phone numbers will be announced on the evening newscast.