Cashew Shortbread Cookies

I’m not sure about you, but everyone around me (even strangers in the elevator) keeps saying, “I can’t believe the holidays are here” or some variation of “I can’t believe” dealing with the end of the year. But, it happens every year, no? Why is it we can’t better prioritize ourselves to expect these things that happen regularly? Well, I’m part of that everyone, and it always amazes me how quickly the year passes.

And every year, I think about getting involved with a cookie swap, but it never happens because the holidays always sneak up on me. This year was different. I found out about The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap from Sweets by Sillianah early on, and I committed! I would have loved to host a cookie swap or participated in other B&M swaps, but this is a good start for me. Next year we’ll see if I can graduate to some of those.

Thank you Julie and Lindsay for hosting and organizing such a wonderful event, and I hope these little cashew shortbread cookies made it safely over the river and through the woods!

Cashew Shortbread Cookies
Ingredients:
1 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 tablespoons powdered sugar
2 cups flour
1 cup chopped cashews
1/3 cup powdered sugar for decoration

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In a medium bowl, cream butter and vanilla until smooth.
3. Sift the 6 tablespoons powdered sugar and flour together and mix into the butter mixture until just blended. Mix in the chopped cashews.
4. Roll dough into 1 inch balls, and place them about 2 inches apart on a Silpat-lined cookie sheet.
5. Bake for 12-15 minutes in the preheated oven. Let cool about 10 minutes, then roll cookies in remaining powdered sugar. Roll cookies a second time if desired.

Cheryl’s Bridal Shower

Blogging philosophical question of the day: if something happened over a year ago, am I still allowed to post it?

I’m not sure what you think, but I say if it’s still relevant, why not? So what Cheryl and Joe were married last September, and so what her bridal shower happened last summer? It was a really great shower (and a really great wedding, which will be another post), and I still want to share it with you. Perhaps some of you are planning your own themed parties, and I welcome you to borrow any ideas you see on this site. :)

As much as Cheryl would have wanted to plan her own shower, her bridesmaids gave her one task only: choosing the theme. She chose the horse race scene from My Fair Lady as a design cue for the bridal shower, which was loosely translated as a “black and white” theme. The bridal party did a great job decorating the space, and I was tasked with baking some black and white items. How did we do? See the rest of the pictures after the jump.

Lots of black and white decor.

Black and white foods included: Peking duck, sushi, cheese, crackers, olives, figs, fruit (we cheated a little), black sesame shortbread cookies, Nutella cupcakes with vanilla frosting, whoopie pies, grass jelly and almond jello, nonpareils, marshmallows and macarons.

Black and white cookie favors with hand-made fabric rosette hairclips!

Black and white presents!

The happy bride was also donned in black and white. It really was a fun shower, and just wait until you see the wedding!