1 My kitchen counters were all set up for our LIVE Facebook chat.
3 I invited my food development director, Thomas Joseph, to join me in the kitchen to bake some of our delicious holiday cookie recipes.
4 When rolling out the dough, always roll with plastic wrap on your dough, so it rolls evenly - and never remove the plastic wrap before it is thawed.
5 I love to use Heckers Ceresota Flour. I often use it for cookies and breads. I also always decant my flour into a bigger glass container, so it is easy to access and scoop out. http://heckersceresota.com
6 Brown sugar keeps cookies nice and chewy. Because brown sugars harden when exposed to air, after opening the package, transfer unused brown sugar into a sealable plastic bag, and then return it to the Domino box for easy identification in your pantry. https://www.dominosugar.com
7 My chickens have been very productive this season - here is a bowl of fresh eggs we collected earlier. The different colors come from different breed chickens.
8 To peel ginger root, just use the edge of a sharp spoon to get rid of only the skin, and not the flesh. Fresh ginger gives gingerbread such a great taste.
10 Always gather your ingredients first before baking so everything is within easy reach.
11 Whenever a recipe calls for something viscous, such as molasses, spray the measuring cup with some nonstick cooking spray to help all the liquid pour out more easily.
12 Do you know... nutmeg is covered with golden mace? It is two spices in one. This is the mace.
13 This is the nutmeg coating, and once you crack it, the nutmeg inside is exposed.
15 Use the freshest ingredients you can find - I ground up my own fresh cinnamon before the chat.
16 When using multiple cookie sheets, always stack crisscrossed, so the trays do not dirty each other.
17 It is so amazing how technology has allowed us to shoot shows like this right on a cell phone. I was able to show viewers lots of closeups of what I was doing.
19 Using an offset spatula helps to lift the cut out cookies without damaging them.
20 Jason Schreiber, who helps in our test kitchen, also came by to make cookies.
21 Jason worked on the icebox cookies.
23 If your cookies have royal icing on top, let them sit overnight so the icing hardens a bit.
24 Someone asked how to keep chocolate chip cookies thick. Too much fat and too much sugar make them thin and crisp, which some love, but hold back a bit on the butter and sugar and you should get a higher, more caky cookie.
25 I could decorate cookies all day long - it is so much fun.
26 When making linzer cookies, use your best jelly. This was red currant jelly made from the currants picked right here at my farm.
28 We had a very small crew, and very minimal lighting equipment needs. All three of the holiday chats I've done on Facebook this year were shot right in my Bedford kitchen.
29 Here I was covering our newly baked and cooled noel nut balls in confectioner's sugar.
31 These peppermint sugar cookies can be packaged up in cellophane and twine - so easy, and what a nice homemade gift for anyone.
37 These great Martha Stewart gift boxes are available at Michael's. I filled several to hand out to some of my friends. http://www.michaels.com
38 A wonderful assortment of cookies for the holiday. What is your favorite cookie recipe?