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December 2011 A Note from Marcy, Baker's Stash

Winterset Strudel, the perfect recipe for almost any holiday and any baker. Who doesn't love strudel?

Dear Bakers and Friends,

Welcome to the December 2011 Issue of BB. I am so glad to see the holidays upon us. December is like an old friend - the sort of friend that can drive you crazy and then when all's said and done, you are so happy to see them.....come December when the year, whatever it brought you, is forgiven.

This month, for the holiday season, I am featuring some (free) classic gotta-bake things as well as a  new inspiration or two.  As always, I remind you that almost everything you need is in the Complete Recipe Archives from more shortbread and other holiday cookies, Hanukkah briskets, Hanukkah donuts and any sort of holiday rugulah you can imagine, as well as a ton of hospitality food from hors d’oeuvres to amazing soups. There's acres of specialty cookies, fruitcakes, steamed pudding and the world's best hot cocoa. There’s even, if you browse the Archives, gifts from the kitchen to get you through to 2012’s doorstep. And if you need a last minute gift suggestion, I suggest a gift subscription to BB - $5 for a whole month of all-recipe access (just visit the To Subscribe page).

As always, all the recipes in this issue, are at the BB website. Why things don’t link consistently from the newsletter back to the website is one of the mysteries of 2011. Very baffling. But I thank you for your patience and hope you visit the BB mother-ship, where you will also find my three free Costco recipes. It’s also where you can see an awesome Star of David Cake made in a nifty Bundt mold from the folks at www.Nordiware.com as well as a rich, elegant Kugelhoph, two special (free) recipes available at www.Clabbergirl.com in my column there.

My fourth cookbook, The Baker’s Four Seasons is closer to finding a new publishing home. So I hope you will stay tuned and stay patient. 

For your holiday entertainment, I am recommending you try a free month of Netflix. Allot of amazing movies are hidden but if you are fond of off-beat, Indie films, the site has quite a few sleepers.  I found a batch of perfect holiday-watching films like Arranged (a modern day Crossing Delancy), Adam (I will see anything with Hugh Dancy in it), Timer (about soulmates but with bar codes for romantic sure bets), Sabah (set in Toronto, about love and culture clash at midlife), The Band’s Visit, and food film classic:  Mostly Martha. For your reading pleasure, an infinitely entertaining book from Leslie Daniels, called Cleaning Nabokov’s House http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_c_1_10?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=cleaning+nabokov%27s+house&sprefix=cleaning+n
It’s so unexpected and even when it turns in a direction I didn’t like, I couldn’t put it down. It’s also filled with food references including a young son who is an avid cookbook collector.

On this end, all is relatively quiet. Publishing more or less closes down around American Thanksgiving - and most writers, authors, editors, agents, and publishers focus on relaxing. Which is what I intend to do and I hope you do as well. 

As per the holiday season, I get a bit reflective, even about old-fashioned baking. I used to think baking was special and soul-lifting (to me and my zealous baking friends) but I never thought of it as change-the-world-for-the-better sort of fare. But I now think that if you can keep yourself grounded in the kitchen, and peaceful in your heart as you bake and wrap and give away your oven's gold, it is indeed, uplifting. The wonderful success of great recipes, done right, is an afterglow that may in fact, shift the world in more ways than we know. 

With warmest wishes for the holidays, your family and friends, and wishing you peace inside and out.

Marcy Goldman
Master Baker, Author
www.BetterBaking.com
Est. 1997

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December’s Recipes (if the recipes don't link, please visit www.betterbaking.com)

FREE Winterset Strudel 
So pretty, especially when captured by photography Ryan Szulc of Toronto

FREE Costco Recipes by Marcy Goldman Costco Recipes
http://www.amazon.com/Cleaning-Nabokovs-House-Leslie-Daniels/dp/B005EP1Q3G/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1322686262&sr=1-1

FREE www.Clabbergirl.Com
Star of David Bundt Cake and a Special Holiday Kugelhoph, please visit my column at www.Clabbergirl.com


Salted Peanut Shortbread 
Talk about a Highland Fling – this is an incredible flavor combination.

$$$$ Millionaire Bars
Perfect for batch-making giftable squares

Golden Almond Holiday Stollen
I just think this makes the best gift or hospitality treat. It lasts well, serves up neat and pretty, and has a lovely almond pastry bouquet that is irresistible.

FREE Perfect Sugar Cookies For Rolling 
It's what you need no matter what shape cookie you are rolling out.

Too Thin, Too Good Cranberry Almond Biscotti 
The perfect gift biscotti (or mandelbrot) - and an office cookie-party winner.


Moravian Butter Thin Cookies
Like Pringles, but in delicate cookies

FREE Sweet Potato and Yukon Gold Potato Latkes 
I have three outstanding latkes recipes on this site. Each is a winner. This is the newest addition to the latke family.

Hannukah's Best Melted Butter Rugulah 
What’s Hanukkah with a best-ever Rugulah?

Maple Walnut Bagels 
Tim Hortons (yes, them again) continue to inspire me. They have Wild Berry Bagels, Chipolte and these outrageous maple walnut bagels that feature well, maple and walnut but this priceless maple glaze, applied as they come out of the oven. A true heartwarming holiday bagel (for those lazy December weekend breakfasts).

Cinnamon Toast Cheesecake 
Something sweet and cosy and perfect for holiday company.

FREE Perfect Grilled Cheese Bread
Because sometimes you want something simple and fuss-free, especially after a ton of holiday food or too much shopping, online or off.








 

 


Previous Monthly Essays from A Note From Marcy:

Essays to tickle your funny bone, wake up your inner baker, twinge on your heartstrings, or make you smile and say, ‘I’ve know the feeling; I know the place”. If you missed an essay, or a season in baking or inner sensibility, we invite you to stroll through our archived Notes From Marcy.

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