Sunday, November 28, 2010

Holiday Treats!

My favorite part of the holidays:  Baking treats for teachers, friends and family.  Every year, some other parents and I host a cookie swap for our grade-level teachers.  We bring in a ton of yummy homemade goodness, tins or tubs for the teachers to take the treats home, and mulled cider for our teachers a day or two before winter break and spoil them a little for all the hard work they do for our children.  This is a fun and yummy way to say thanks to our teachers.  I am already looking forward to the cookie swap and thinking about what I'll make this year.
I shared some recipes last year, but in the holiday rush, didn't have time to post pictures.  So, while I am mulling over what to make, here are some pics of some of my favorite holiday treats:
 Pizzelles, Homemade Marshmallows and the cutest ever Chocolate-Drizzled Homemade Marshmallow Pops!

 My favorite Hershey's Hugs Pretzels and deeeee-licious Hazelnut Cocoa Coins, which are chocolatey AND buttery.  What could be better!?!?

 These were so pretty, I had to take a lot of pictures.  Maggie and I made so many marshmallows last year and we are looking forward to trying some new flavors.  Last year, we made vanilla and peppermint flavors, but this year, I want to try toasted coconut marshmallows.  

 And there is no holiday without pizzelles and biscotti, which are beautiful cookies to me at every stage of  production.  Perhaps it's the nostalgia:  I loved watching my mother and grandmother making these, and love that my daughters and I make them together now.  Even in their doughy forms, these cookies make me smile!
I am REALLY hoping to make my holiday baking menu soon so that I can get the recipes in for you as soon as possible.  I am also hoping that if all I have to do is add pictures, it might actually come together a little more effectively this year.   I wonder if it's time to put out a call for favorite cookies recipes from friends and family for some inspiration!?!?