Martha Stewart recipe

Christmas Cookies – Part 2

Saturday I did a lot of baking in preparation for my cookie decorating party!

Martha Stewart’s Ideal Sugar Cookies


Makes 2 dozen

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons brandy, or milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Royal Icing for Sugar Cookies, optional


  1. Whisk together flour, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar; mix until light and fluffy. With mixer running, add egg, brandy, and vanilla; mix until well combined. With the mixer on low, slowly add reserved flour mixture. Mix until just combined.
  2. Transfer dough to a work surface. Shape into 2 discs, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper; set aside.
  4. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut into desired shapes, and transfer to prepared baking sheets, leaving an inch in between. Leftover dough can be rolled and cut once more. Bake until lightly golden, about 10 minutes; do not allow to brown. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

Read more at Ideal Sugar Cookies – Martha Stewart Recipes

Pasta Salad

Last week I mentioned that I would post a pasta salad recipe that I was taking to the potluck. Here’s the original Martha Stewart Recipe:

Rigatoni with Goat Cheese

Serves: 6

1 lb rigatoni

1 1/2 cups crumbled goat cheese (about 4 ounces)

1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese

Topping Suggestions:

1/4 cup sliced pitted black olives

1/4 cup chopped or torn herbs

1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

1/4 cup slivered sun-dried tomatoes

1. Cook the pasta in salted water, drain.

2. Return the pasta to the pot, toss with goat cheese and Parmesan cheese. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Sprinkle the pasta with any or all of the suggested toppings as desired, serve immediately.

So since we were going to a family reunion with a potluck dinner AND it was supposed to be insanely hot out, we wanted to make something cold.

I cooked the pasta and then put it in the fridge to cool it down a bit.

I sprinkled olive oil on the cold pasta, mixed it together, then sprinkled goat cheese on it.

Then sliced olives and grated Parmesan cheese.

According to the Recipe Analyzer, a serving is about 350 calories.

I took this pasta salad to the potluck this weekend. It tasted pretty good but it wasn’t as popular with the crowd as my No Bake Cookies. I think part of the reason is because there were tons of pasta salads already. Also, it was pretty dry. I probably should have added more olive oil to it before serving it. Oh well! Live and learn. I’d try the recipe again and see if I could get it just right.

Leaving Washington

Sunday was a really nice day and we drove home from Poulsbo, managing to avoid all traffic. We lucked out. On the way down, we stopped at Burgerville to eat lunch. I was cranky because of my tooth and had decided I would just never eat again. Real mature, I know. Michael convinced me to eat. He said that if I was already in pain WITHOUT eating, why not eat food and still be in pain?

I got the Halibut fish and chips but instead of the chips, I got a side salad.

Fish Minus the Chips

I was actually really impressed with the meal. For fast food it was incredibly tasty — especially the salad.

The salad was impressively fresh and the dressing was good too. Here is our receipt with my calories:

Not bad for 550 calories!