Holiday Bake-O-Ramma

So I'm chatting with my friend Hope, and the conversation turns to holiday cookies. My pulse raced at the thought of baking with her. You see, Hope's one of the city's most respected cooking instructors.

The wheels started to spin....

"Oooh, we should bake together!"

Hope thought for a moment and offered, "I might be able to get access to a commercial kitchen."


And there, my friends, is how an idea was born.

This Saturday, seven delicious women gathered in the school's teaching kitchen. We arrived with prepared dough in hand...and made use of the large counter space for decorating and assembly. (For my contribution, I made Ina Garten's Rugelach and Lex Culinaria's Chocolate-Dipped Ginger Cookies.)

The kitchen sprung into action as ladies rolled, imprinted, and sugared their cookies. Me? I wandered around the space capturing pictures.

What can I say?

Not only was it a great space to work, but the commercial kitchen had some really cool toys...see the ovens? We could bake 12 full-sized sheet pans at a time! And I love that doughnut cutter.

Speaking of cutters, check out that big white machine. It's a dough cutter. Hope explained that you load the dough in the pan at the bottom, and pull a lever. A blade comes down and cuts the pieces uniformly. How cool is that?

Okay, back to cookie talk. To see the full bounty of our baking frenzy, click here. (Roll your mouse over the photo for a short description of each cookie.)

That's a lot of love....

~* ~* ~*

One last thing....
While I was researching recipes, I came across some really great websites and thought I'd pass them along. If you're baking for the are few resources:

How to:

A Cookie Assembly Line: Efficient Cookie Baking for Busy Cooks

Hassle-Free Holiday Baking: 6 Easy Days to Perfect Christmas Cookies



Joy of Baking

Dessert by Candy

Sunset Magazine's Winning Recipes

Martha Stewart's Holiday Cookies