Our Favorite Christmas Cookies!
One of the sweetest parts of celebrating the holiday season is baking cookies with family and friends. At Price Chopper and Market 32, we love these treats as much as you do and have many different favorites of our own. Whether they’re family traditions or simply the most satisfying to our sweet tooth, we are pleased to share some our holiday favorites with you!
Our teammates are big fans of peanut butter, especially when it comes to Christmas
Teammates Celina R. and Alison P. from our Storrs, CT store!
cookies. In the words of teammate Kelly K., from our Sutton, MA store; “My favorite holiday cookie is peanut butter blossoms.” Her response was backed by teammate Celina R. from our Storrs, CT who said “my favorite holiday cookies are peanut butter cookies, because who doesn’t love peanut butter?” Peanut Butter Blossoms are a holiday classic and easily one of our favorite Christmas cookies, check out the recipe in the link below to try them for yourself!
We asked June M., Floral Team Leader in our Chenango, NY store about her favorite Christmas cookie, she said, “Poppy Seed Kolache. My mother made them for years. Brings me back. It was always a tradition and they are so good!” Poppy Seed Kolache is a Czechoslovakian pastry with a poppy seed filling. If you’ve never tried Kolache it is a delicious treat perfect for the holiday season! Give this recipe a try by following the link below!
In our main office, Sarah M. of our Business Intelligence team added “Although it is not technically a Christmas cookie, Baklava is a Middle Eastern dessert that is somewhat labor intensive to bake, so my family tends to only make it during the holidays. Baklava is very sweet, has lots of sugar, cinnamon, and walnuts – and it reminds me of my grandmother!” Check out the recipe below!
Teammate Mike M. in our Palatine Bridge, NY store: “Chocolate jumbos with green and red icing. They are delicious, smell good while baking, and taste like the holidays!” Chocolate jumbos make a fantastic addition to any Christmas baking lists. They are truly a perfect sweet for the season!
Finally, teammate Allison P. at our Storrs, CT store gave perhaps the most festive response; “Sugar cookies that look like candy canes. They’re fun to eat!” From their look to their taste these Candy Cane Cookies are a staple of the Christmas season. How could you not enjoy baking such a fun cookie?
Baking Christmas cookies is one of our favorite parts of the holiday season. We hope you enjoy these recipes as much as we do, and maybe find a new Christmas favorite to share with family and friends!
From all of us at Price Chopper and Market 32, Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays!
Written by Maureen Murphy & Sarah Palmer
When it comes to baking a pie, mastering the crust is key! While you can purchase pre-made pie crusts in the dairy & frozen section of our stores, making a pie crust from scratch will make your pie the star of the dessert table! Below are some tried & true tips to help get you started!
Now that your pie crust skills are feeling confident, fill your crust with this delicious Chocolate-Pecan filling for a sweet pie your holiday guests will love!
Chocolate Pecan Pie
- Your butter & water must be cold; even frozen butter works as long as you cut it into cubes before freezing
- Measure ingredients carefully to prevent a tough, greasy or soggy crust
- Cut the fat into the flour just until the size of peas (use a fork or pastry blender)
- Handle pie dough as little as possible to ensure a flaky and tender crust
- Chill pie dough for several hours to tenderize the dough, and prevent shrinkage during baking
- Allow the dough to come to room temperature before rolling
- Roll dough from the center out to a 1/8̋ thickness or less
- To place the pie crust in the pie pan, carefully loosen it from the cutting board; fold it over the rolling pin. Unroll it into the pan and press down lightly
- Trim any excess dough, leaving approximately ½ ̋ for fluting the edge
- Flute the edge by pinching dough between the thumb and forefinger or seal the edge by pressing the dough with a fork against the rim of the pie pan
- When baking a crust without the filling, prick the dough with a fork and place dry beans or rice in the bottom to prevent shrinkage while baking. Bake in a preheated 450°F oven for 10 -12 minutes or until lightly browned.
- For the crust to be baked with a filling, do not prick the crust. For pies with juicy fillings, brush the bottom of the crust with egg white or melted butter to prevent a soggy crust.
- For pies that bake more than 30 minutes, place a rim of foil around the edge of the crust during the first half of baking to prevent over-browning
- 2 PICS eggs
- 1 cup PICS sugar
- ½ cup Price Chopper flour
- ½ cup PICS butter, melted
- 1 T. PICS vanilla
- 1 cup PICS pecans, chopped
- 6 oz. semi sweet chocolate morsels
- 1 pastry shell, unbaked
Preheat oven to 350°F. Beat eggs slightly in mixing bowl. Blend in sugar, flour, butter and vanilla. Stir in pecans and chocolate. Pour into pie shell. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until golden brown. Cool and serve. Serves 6-8. Written by Sara Lilkas and Tyler Blance
We’re proud to support farmers and producers of the Northeast throughout the whole year! Our Christmas trees are grown and harvested on farms in New York and Vermont: When it’s grown here, we get it here. We recently were able to talk with Richie Hourihan, our farmer at Cabot Christmas Tree Farm in Cabot, Vermont about everything from growing Christmas trees from seed to keeping them beautiful once they are decorated at home!
PC: How long does it take from seed for a tree to grow full-sized?
RH: It usually takes about 12-20 years from seed to grow a full-sized tree. When planting new trees we usually transplant trees that are already about 5 years old and 14 inches tall.
PC: When do you start cutting down trees for the Christmas season?
RH: I usually start cutting down trees the day after Halloween, however with the warmer weather this year we had to continually put off cutting down the trees. Every tree must go through 2-3 hard frosts or “killing frosts” before they’re ready for cutting and bring home. After 2-3 hard frosts the trees enter dormancy, when trees are cut in dormancy they last longer in household temperatures and hold onto their needles.
PC: How long did you have to wait to cut down trees this year as a result of the warmer temperatures?
RH: This year we started cutting trees down a few days before Thanksgiving, and I was able to start delivering them the day after Thanksgiving.
PC: How many new trees do you plant each year?
RH: About 3,000 new trees every year.
PC: What growing methods do you use for your Christmas trees?
RH: No chemicals, sprays or fertilizers are used. The farm is USDA GAP [Good Agricultural Procedures] Certified. GAP ensures safe, environmentally friendly growing practices, regardless of the crop. We voluntarily go through this audit to verify the produce and trees we grow are handled and stored in the safest way possible.
PC: What’s your favorite variety of tree to grow?
RH: Balsam fir. Balsam fir trees are indigenous to the area (since they are native to the area they grow fast than other varieties) and they hold up the longest once cut and put indoors. An added bonus to growing balsam fir trees is that the deer do not like to nibble on them unlike other varieties!
PC: What is your favorite part of growing Christmas Trees?
RH: My favorite part of growing Christmas trees takes place in the summer time. After a long day on the farm attending to the other crops [Richie also grows berries, corn, and other vegetables] is mowing in between the rows of trees. I go out after dinner when it’s still light out and everyone who works on the farm with me has gone home. Mowing in between the trees is very peaceful, quiet, and I have a beautiful view of the mountains.
PC: What are some tips you could offer for keeping a healthy tree during the holiday season?
RH: When you get your tree home, cut about an inch off the base. When the trees are first cut sap starts to bleed and forms a cement-like layer along the base of the tree preventing it from taking in any water.
PC: How often should you water your Christmas tree?
RH: You should check to make sure the base is full every one to two days. A tree can use up to a quart of water a day!
PC: How should trees be disposed of, once the holidays are over?
RH: I recommend checking to see if there are any local ordinances in place. Many towns recycle Christmas trees either into mulch to be used in gardens and parks or are used to make barriers to prevent soil erosion.
We would like to thank Richie Hourihan for being a partner with us and for taking the time to share his knowledge about harvesting trees. We love being able to provide locally grown products to our customers and that would not be possible without farmers like Richie.
From our family to yours, have a very Merry Christmas.