And here we are at December 24th already! This year has been an incredible year with so much to be thankful for. I'm grateful for many things and also excited that I took this plunge into this little baking blog of mine. Thank you for your support and encouragement one recipe and photo at a time.
We have been busy in the kitchen this weekend and we aren't done yet. Our Christmas cookies for Santa are ready though, which is very important...obviously. I use the same cookie recipe every year and it never fails. I came across this 1979 Betty Crocker baking book at a flea market years ago and I love it. The recipe in the book calls for shortening but I substitute my Kerrygold Irish Butter...because it's my thing and I think it makes for some great cookies!
Once they cool, it's time to frost and decorate. I have used both color flow and royal icing on these cookies before, but I went for a classic buttercream with orange & vanilla extract this year. Then I put the little hands of the house to work with the sprinkles and holiday sugar. I think they did a pretty great job.
Today, my brother is coming for brunch and I strongly feel that Christmas Eve brunch requires cake. This isn't just any old brunch, right? The go-to white cake recipe I use is from Goodie Godmother. I've tried a number of recipes for cake from scratch and I found that many of my white cakes were coming out heavy until I found this one. This recipe comes together very nicely and it's very versatile by using different extracts, fillings and frosting.
In keeping with holiday flavors, this is a 3 layer naked white cake flavored with orange extract, filled with homemade cranberry filling and frosted with the same orange & vanilla buttercream used on the cookies. The tree accents were loosely piped with melted chocolate and then set in the freezer until time to decorate. The cranberries were tossed in a simple syrup of sugar and water and then sprinkled with sugar for a snowy look. Simple and festive.
From our family to yours, we wish you and your loved ones a merry Christmas and a peaceful, healthy new year filled with joy, inspiration, creativity and love.
Fitness and yoga lovin' wife, momma & home baker.