Candy is Dandy

Four local entrepreneurs fulfill our growing desire for sweets. by Mary Bailey Caramia Caramels Romance inspired sisters Tammy and Alysia Lok to start handcrafting their own caramels. Tammy had tasted soft caramels on her honeymoon in Europe and, in one of those serendipitous moments, discovered that caramels were Alysia boyfriend’s favourite candy. Not just any …

Gold Medal Plates Christmas Cookies

We asked the 2013 Gold Medal Plates contenders to take a moment and think about Christmas cookies. Each chef had a memory of anticipation, happiness, and love all wrapped up in a little cookie. Many make the same cookies they grew up with — shortbread, butter cookies, spice cookies. Even peanut butter and chocolate chip …

Alsatian anise cookies

Serge Jost, Fairmont Hotel Macdonald “Christmas cookies are a big deal in the Alsace. A lot of tradition is associated with cookies starting with gingerbread for December 6, St. Nicholas day. What I like the most is the anise cookie, which we always say is the father of the macaron — a crisper, harder cookie …

Doreen Prei’s Christmas cookies

Doreen Prei, Edmonton Petroleum Club “Christmas cookies mean a lot to me. My great grandmother always made lots — she has a special tin for everyone on Christmas Eve. “I remember a chocolate cookie with the hazelnut inside and a straight-up butter cookie with almonds, like a shortbread — little buttery pillows shaped like a …

Viennese shortbread

Jesse Morrison-Gauthier, The Common “Shortbread is my favourite Christmas cookie — I love the mouthfeel, you put it on your tongue and it dissolves,” says Jesse. The secret to a well-made shortbread cookie? “Creaming the butter and sugar for a long time. “This is a piped shortbread, a NAIT baking recipe from when I went …

Empire Biscuits & Spitzbuben

Robert Simpson, Blackhawk Golf Course “Christmas cookies make me think of my mom, a very good cook and baker. She’s German; my Dad is Scottish. The two holiday cookies I remember the most are Scottish Empire biscuits with icing and jam, and what we called spitzibuben.” Empire biscuits 3 c flour 1 c sugar 1 …

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Andrew Fung, XIX Nineteen “I like chocolate chip cookies myself — small, bite-sized, delicate. Eating a cookie like that is like Christmas every day.” 2 c butter 1 c brown sugar ½ c sugar 2 large eggs 4½ c flour ½ c chocolate chips Preheat oven to 350°F. Cream the butter and sugar together. Add …

Mom’s shortbread

Paul Shufelt, Century Group “This is my mom’s recipe. In true mom fashion, it was hard to pin her down on specifics, rather a pinch of this and a dab of that, but thankfully this one is pretty simple. It makes about 24 cookies, depending on the size you want to make.” ½ c cornstarch …

Basler Läckerli

Jan Trittenbach, Pack Rat Louie “My favourite Christmas cookie is a traditional Swiss cookie called Basler Läckerli. Whenever my mom made it, I just loved it. It’s not too sweet and I like the not-too-soft texture.” Adapted from Desserts by Pierre Hermé. ¾ c honey ½ c sugar ½ t finely grated lemon zest ¼ …