Cookies and Cocktails for the New Year - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Cookies and Cocktails for the New Year

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BURLINGTON, Vt. - Chef Courtney Contos taught Gina Bullard how to throw a cookies and cocktails themed party.

Watch the video to see it happen.

Cookies and Cocktails Recipe:

Soft Glazed Gingerbread

Makes 12 to 20 cookies depending on size of cutters


3¾ cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon cocoa powder

2 teaspoons fresh ginger

1½ teaspoon ground cloves

2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1¼ teaspoon Pierre Poive, freshly ground

1 cup (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature

¾ cup + 2 tablespoon granulated sugar

1 large egg

½ cup blackstrap or other dark molasses

2 tablespoon golden syrup


1 cup confectioners' sugar

2 tablespoon water

To make the dough, stir together the flour, cocoa powder, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and pepper in a mixing bowl. Set aside. Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until creamy. Slowly add the granulated sugar and mix on medium speed until the mixture is completely smooth and soft. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the egg and mix well.

Add the molasses and golden syrup and beat until incorporated. Stop the mixer again and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the flour mixture and beat on low speed until a dough forms that pulls away from the sides of the bowl and all the ingredients are well incorporated. Remove the dough from the bowl, flatten it on a large piece of plastic wrap into a rectangle about 1 inch thick, cover the dough with the plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Unwrap the dough and place on a floured work surface. If using a plaque with a design, roll our the dough 1/2-inch thick, lightly dust the op with flour, press your cookie molds over the dough, and then cut out the shapes with a small knife and place on the prepared baking sheet, spacing them about 1 inch apart. Alternatively, using the mold as a guide, cut around it with a small knife, flip the mold over so the design is facing you, and place the dough over it, pressing it into the design. Unmold the shapes onto the prepared baking sheet, leaving about 1 inch between them.

If using a patterned rolling pin, lightly dust the lined baking sheet with flour and transfer the dough to the pan. Lightly dust the top of the dough with flour and roll it into a rectangle about 1/3 inch thick with a plain pin. Then, using the patterned pin, roll over the dough with enough pressure to ensure a clear impression of the design. Trim the sides with a small knife. It is not necessary to cut into smaller sizes before baking.

Bake the cookies until lightly golden along the sides but still soft to the touch in the centers, 7 to 15 minutes. the timing will depend on the size of the individual cookies, or if you have made a single large patterned piece that will be cut after baking.

While the cookies are baking, prepare the glaze. In a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners' sugar and water utnil smooth.

When the cookies are ready, remove from the oven and let cool on the pan on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Then, while the cookies are still warm, using even strokes, brush a light coat of glaze on the top of each cookie, evenly coating it. Let the cookies cool completely. When the glaze dries, it should leave a shiny opaque finish. If you have a used a patterned rolling pin to make a single large plaque, cut into the desired shapes with a small very sharp knife. The cookies will keep in an airtight container in a cool place for about 2 weeks.

Shortbread Cookies

14 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

scant 1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

scant 2 cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons graulated sugar for dusting

In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachenment, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar and salt, mix on medium-low speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the vanilla, mix on low speed until incorporated. Add the flour in two parts, mixing on low until incorporated before adding the next, 15 to 30 seconds. Remove from the bowl, shape into a dish and refrigerate for 2 hours. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Press the dough into a 9x9-inch baking dish, dust with sugar. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the shortbread is a light golden brown. Cool on a baking sheet for 10 minutes, then cut into 2-inch squares and transfer to wire rack to cool.

Holiday Mojito

one drink

1 ounce light rum

.5 ounce grand marnier

1-2 tablespoon

2 limes juiced

kaffir lime leaves, jullened

1-3 sugar cubes

6 whole fresh cranberries


Muddle cranberries, sugar and lime leaves. Add rum, grand marnier, and lime juice. Stir well and top with ice.

Whiskey Ginger Cocktail

For the Fresh Ginger Syrup:

8 ounces (225g) fresh ginger, unpeeled

4 cups (1l) water

2 cups (400g) sugar

pinch salt

1. Cut the ginger into pieces and place in food processor or smal dice.

2. Place the ginger along with the water, sugar, and salt in saucepan. Heat to a boil, then reduce the heat to a steady simmer, and cook for 45 minutes.

3. Let cool, then strain the syrup through a fine-mesh strainer. Store the strained syrup in the refrigerator, covered, until ready to use. The syrup should keep for at least two weeks under refrigeration.

For the Cocktail:

2 ounces bourbon

3/4 ounce fresh ginger syrup

1 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice from 1 to 2 limes

Garnish: lime twist or lime wheel

For the Cocktail: Pour bourbon, 3/4 ounce ginger syrup and lime juice into a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice and shake until well chilled, about 15 seconds. Strain into coupe, garnish as desired and serve.

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