Can Christmas cookie baking be therapeutic?
First of all let me assure you that-yes, I am a therapist, and yes-this is a serious blog. Sometimes the most simple everyday-things can turn out to be therapeutic and help us fokus on the present. Baking Christmas cookies can be fun and relaxing for some and stressful and demanding for others. Here is my version of the story. My family is not big on the Christmas baking traditions, but since I relatively young moved to Denmark (a country where Christmas is celebrated in all its beauty and glory) I was lucky to inherit one of my Danish friend's Christmas baking traditions. You see Randi's mom had this page out of a ladies-magazine, where all the cookie recepies were. And when Randi and her family baked together, they chose a different recepy every year and her mom would note the year on the page. One year I got invited to bake together with Randi (who by then had her own home and continued the tradition). And this is how my own Christmas baking tradition started. We tried to bake together the first coupe of years, but as life is the way it is (you know, trivial stuff like time and distance get in the way), we had to adjust and contunue the tradition each on our own. Imagine having family or friends around (having kids around while Christmas baking is grat fun!) putting the Xmas music on, preparing the cutting shapes, preparing the beautiful boxes and then just getting your hands in the dough... Oh! And if you are really really lucky, it just might start snowing outside. I say it's therapeutic and highly recommendable. Please try it (also alone) at home! Here is the recepy of my favourite: Danish Christmas Cookies 1/2 kg flour 1 even teaspoon carbamate 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom 1 lemon 350 gr butter 250 gr sugar 1 egg For decorating: 1 egg Cinnemon and sugar Chopped almonds
Mix flour, carbamate, cardamom and finely grated lemon zest toghether. Chop the butter in and put the sugar. Put the egg and mix the dough, then you leave it in the fridge for 1 hour. Roll out the dough thinly on a floured surface and cut the cakes out. Place on baking sheet, brush with beaten egg and sprinkle a mixture of cinnamon, sugar and chopped almonds on. Bake for 5-6 min at 200. The secret here is a really really thinly rolled dough. And when you bake - beware! 5-6 minutes go very fast :-) Have fun!