The Dote Christmas Cookie Exchange Part 3

For the third day of our Dote Christmas Cookie Exchange, we have recipes from our Client Relations Lead, Leanne Wood, and our Lead Designer, Anastacia Jido.

Leanne’s Mini Chip Butter Crisps

The Mini Chip Butter Crisps recipe means so much to me, as it was a quick and easy cookie we made every Christmas in our Wood family. I have memories making these cookies with my mom and still have the recipe card with all its butter stains from the ages and 80s photography. 

My English roots adore this shortbread-like cookie, and I have yet to find anyone who doesn’t love them too. 

Ingredients:

  • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour 
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¼ cups UNSALTED butter, softened
  • 1 cup icing sugar 
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla 
  • 1 ½ cups mini chocolate chips (you can switch these out for mint chips, regular chocolate chips, or score bits)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 F.
  2. Stir together flour and salt.
  3. Cream butter, then gradually beat in icing sugar and vanilla.
  4. Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture a little at a time. Blend until smoothly combined.
  5. Stir in desired amount of chocolate chips.
  6. Form dough into 1-inch balls. 
  7. Place 1 dozen at a time on a cookie sheet and flatten with a flour-covered glass.
  8. Bake in 325F oven for 10 to 11minutes or until golden brown on the edges. 
  9. Cool on cookie rack. This recipes makes about 6 dozen cookies.
  10. Wrap well and freeze for up to 2months. 

Anastacia’s Baklava

Growing up half Greek definitely had its perks, one of which being the insanely delicious food. My grandma would always be baking the most delicious desserts, and baklava is one of my many favourites (it’s so hard to choose a fave!). But making baklava reminds me of being a child and helping her pour all of the ingredients together in her kitchen in this giant yellow bowl and feeling like the best helper. This is a fun recipe to do with a loved one, bff, child, or on your own with some festive music playing, singing your heart out (that’s how I love to bake). Put your own twist on baklava by picking nuts you love, and make tons for family and friends, because this is like heaven in dessert form. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups clarified butter, melted, plus extra for brushing
  • 1 lb 2 oz ready-made phyllo dough (filo pastry)
  • 2 cups almonds, coarsely chopped
  • 2 cups walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • Cloves, to decorate (optional)

For the syrup:

  • 3 cups superfine (caster) sugar
  • ½ cup corn syrup or honey
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons brandy (optional)

Directions

  1. Brush a baking pan, that is exactly the same size as the sheets of phyllo, with melted butter. Alternatively, cut the sheets of phyllo to fit your baking pan and brush it with melted butter.
  2. Combine the nuts, cinnamon, and cloves in a bowl.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  4. Lay 4 sheets of phyllo on the base of the prepared baking pan, brushing each with melted butter. Sprinkle some of the nut mixture evenly over them.
  5. Continue layering the sheets of phyllo, one at a time, and brushing each with melted butter and sprinkling some of the nut mixture until all of it has been used and only 4 sheets of phyllo remain.
  6. Top with the remaining sheets of phyllo, brushing each with melted butter, and score the top layers with a sharp knife into small diamond-shaped or triangular pieces.
  7. Stick a clove in the centre of each piece, if you’d like.
  8. Brush with the remaining melted butter and sprinkle lightly with warm water to prevent phyllo from curling.
  9. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until golden brown. Meanwhile, make the syrup.
  10. Put the sugar, corn syrup or honey, and lemon zest, into a small pan, pour in 2cups of water, and bring to a boil, stirring constantly until the sugar has dissolved. Simmer, without stirring, for 5 minutes.
  11. Stir in the lemon zest or vanilla, and brandy, and remove from heat.
  12. Ladle the hot syrup carefully and evenly over the baklava as soon as you take it out of the oven. Let it absorb the syrup and cool completely.

Baklava keeps, covered loosely with a cloth or in tin foil, at room temperature for 1 to 2 weeks.