December 20, 2007
Issue #014


I can't believe it's nearly Christmas. I love Christmas because it means spending time with family and cooking and baking special meals together. Here are a few of my favorite easy recipes for serving at get-togethers during this festive season. Kids will love to help with the baking and decorating (and eating!) at Christmas time.

My two favorite quick sweet bread recipes that make great gifts for neighbors and can be sliced and served for visitors:

Pumpkin Bread Loaf

2 cups flour
2/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup mashed pumpkin
1/2 cup milk
2 large eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup chopped pecans or raisins (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F degrees. In large mixing bowl combine 1 cup of the flour and all the dry ingredients. Next add pumpkin, milk, eggs, and oil.

Then beat with electric mixer on high speed for 2 minutes. Stir in remaining flour and beat. Stir in nuts or raisins (optional). Pour into greased loaf pan and bake for 1 hour. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes. Wrap in foil and store overnight at room temperature. Slice and serve the next day.

Sweet bread baking tip: Grease the bottom of baking pan as well as about 1/2 inch up the sides.

Nut bread tip: When baking nut breads, check 10 minutes before baking time is up and cover top with foil if it seems to be browning too fast.

Zucchini Bread Loaf

1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2/3 cup sugar
1 cup zucchini, shredded (wash but do not peel)
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 large egg
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F degrees. In large mixing bowl combine dry ingredients. In another bowl add zucchini, oil, and egg and mix well. Add flour mixture and stir just a little. Pour into greased loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool 10 minutes. Wrap and store overnight.

Cinnamon Shortbread Decorations

2 cups butter
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
4 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup rice flour

Cinnamon Sugar Topping:
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

In a mixing bowl, beat butter, sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla until fluffy. Sift flour, then stir in. With your hands press the dough mixture together then knead for 3 minutes. Divide into two balls, cover, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 300F degrees. Grease baking trays. On floured surface, roll out dough using rolling pin (about 1 to 1 1/2 inch thick). Use a round cookie cutter or glass jar to make 2 inch round shapes. Cut a hole in the middle of the cookie large enough to thread a ribbon through. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar topping. Bake for 30 minutes.

Remove from oven and cool. Thread one long red, green, or gold ribbon through the shortbread cookies to make a chain and hang on the Christmas tree (or you can thread one short ribbon through each cookie). You can serve these on a platter or use as a place setting at your Christmas dinner table.

White Chocolate Christmas No-Bake Treats

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup cream
1/4 cup marshmallows
3/4 cup white chocolate chips
4 cups Rice Krispies cereal
1/2 cup Christmas M&Ms (red and green)
4 teaspoons edible silver balls (optional: be careful - do not serve these balls to young children)

In a saucepan, combine butter, cream, marshmallows, and chocolate. Stir over low heat. Next add Rice Krispies cereal and stir. Then cool for 10 to 20 minutes. Add half of M&Ms and stir.

Line muffin pan with Christmas or silver muffin cups. Fill cups with mixture. Place remaining M&Ms and silver balls (optional) on top of treats.


Be sure to visit my website for more Christmas party recipes and for some Christmas cookie recipes.


Thanks again for subscribing to the Recipes Express newsletter. If you like this newsletter, feel free to forward it on to a friend.
Or if this was forwarded to you by a friend, I'd like to invite you to subscribe to my free newsletter now.


I hope you have many hours of baking fun this holiday.

Merry Christmas and Happy Kid Cooking!

Clarissa the Mom Chef
Easy Kids Recipes