With the holidays approaching so quickly after Thanksgiving this year, I’m not sure how many different types of cookies I am going to get done in time for our Christmas celebration. But there are a few kinds that just have to be made no matter what because of tradition. Now the chorus of the song “Tradition” from Fiddler on the Roof is playing in my head. Good thing you can’t hear it as I wasn’t blessed with a good voice. I really think we will all be able to sing in heaven, though, don’t you?:) I hope so anyway. In the meantime I will stick to singing in my head and in the car. Although, these cookies made me want to sing the Hallelujah Chorus right out loud in front of everybody! I have made M and M cookies for Christmas ever since the kids were babies. However, most of the time, even though they tasted good, I was frustrated with how they looked, because they looked flat as a pancake. In fact, pancakes are way more puffy than my cookies were. I had tried everything to get my cookies to look right. More oil, less oil, butter instead of oil, more flour, less flour, adding oatmeal, etc. Nothing seemed to work. Until now. I discovered Averie Cooks blog, and reading her posts is just a gold mine of information about baking. This is one of her recipes for M and M cookies, and they came out perfectly with the addition of an ingredient that I had never seen added to cookies before coming across her website. That ingredient is cornstarch. Just a tiny amount made all the difference in the world.
There are also a few other tips that make a thick, chewy cookie just like the kind you find at Paradise Bakery. Refrigerate your dough for at least 2 hours before baking the cookies. I would also add to keep the dough refrigerated between batches. It’s amazing how quickly the dough warms up when you have your oven on in the kitchen. The other thing to help prevent the cookies from flattening out too much is to bake them on a silpat or parchment paper. This is a double bonus because it makes clean up even easier. This time of year, that is a wonderful thing. And lastly, don’t overbake the cookies. I cannot stress this enough if you want soft cookies. Take them out when they are just barely set in the middle, before they look like they are done. They will set up when they cool. Just don’t move them from the cookie sheet for about 10 minutes. They will fall apart in your hand, and then you will have to eat them. On second thought, maybe you should move at least one or two cookies right away!:)
I hope you get a chance to try out these cookies. If you are a fan of M and M’s, you will love them. Now that the M and M cookies are done and in the freezer, Frosted Sugar Cookies are next. What kinds of cookies or baked goods are traditional for holidays at your house?
M and M Cookies
- 3/4 c (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 c light brown sugar, packed
- 1/4 c granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 c all-purpose flour (I used King Arthur brand)
- 2 tsp. cornstarch
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- pinch salt
- 1 1/2 c M and M’s candies
- To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter, sugars, egg, vanilla, and beat on medium-high speed until well-creamed, light and fluffy, about 5 minutes (or use a hand mixer and beat for at least 7 minutes).
- Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, salt, and mix until just combined, about 1 minute.
- Add the M and M’s and fold in by hand.
- When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees and let cookies sit out for about 15 minutes.
- While oven is preheating, line a baking sheet with a silpat or parchment paper (this is important so cookies don’t flatten out too much).
- Place just enough cookie mounds on a baking sheet, spaced at least 2 inches apart, returning unused cookie mounds to refrigerator until ready to bake next batch.
- Bake for 8 to 10 minutes (mine took 10 minutes). Do Not Overbake! Cookies will firm up as they cool. Leave on cookie sheet for 10 minutes before moving them.
- Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature or refrigerator for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Alternatively, unbaked cookie dough can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Recipe from Cook AZ I Do, originally created by Averie Cooks