Tag Archives: cookies

Photo Credit: Cooking Classic

Delicious Cookies to Enjoy This Holiday Season

Some of my favorite memories from the Holiday Season are gathering around with family to bake and decorate cookies. Now-a-days, there are countless recipes floating around the internet that you just have to try. We’ve rounded up the most scrumptious recipes we could find from the classics to cookies you would have never thought of trying!


Classic Sugar Cookies

When I think of baking cookies for Christmas, I think of sugar cookies. They’re soft, savory, and so much fun to decorate! Did you know that the first sugar cookie goes all the way back to the mid-1700s in Nazareth, Pennsylvania? According to Cook CFB, German Protestants first created the cookie which used to be known as the Nazareth Cookie. Now, we all know and love it by the name sugar cookie.


Tip: For a unique decorating technique, try using Royal Icing!




Gingerbread Cookies

Photo Credit: Cooking Classy

Photo Credit: Cooking Classy

Gingerbread is used in a plethora of delicious recipes. Perhaps most famous for brightly candy decorated houses, gingerbread is considered another “classic” holiday treat. However, we want to give credit to the beloved Gingerbread cookies. Traditionally, these cookies are crisp and flavorful, but modern tweaks to the recipe have made deviations that are soft and chewy or even converted into “cookie bars.”







New Cookies to Try

Photo Credit: <a href="http://www.handletheheat.com/chewy-chocolate-gingerbread-cookie/" target="_blank">Handle The Heat</a>

Photo Credit: Handle The Heat

While we find it important to keep your family traditions of baking the “classics,” we also encourage you to try a few new recipes this holiday season! We rounded up the most unique and delicious looking cookie recipes that we could find. Give them a try and let us know how they turn out in the comments!





You can’t bake without the right supplies. But don’t worry, Central Restaurant Products has you covered with everything you need for baking the perfect holiday treats. Here are a few essentials to get you started:

Need more? See our full assortment of products at www.centralrestaurantproducts.com!

Central’s Holiday Recipes

Happy Holidays from Central! We’ve compiled some of our employee’s favorite Holiday recipes to share with  you and your family. We know we enjoy them, and hope you do too!

Quick Links

Cushaw Pie from Denise McKenney
Vanilla Mashed Sweet Potatoes from Kaycee Sasser
Marinades for Turkey from Justina Welch
Candy Cane Fudge from Laura Bedilion
Baked Pineapple from Denise Dixon
Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies from Kerrie Lafky
Baked Ziti from Tracey Rector

Cushaw Pie from Denise McKenney

“A cushaw is basically a crooked neck squash. You make the pie like a pumpkin pie but the flavor is lighter and more like a cross between pumpkin & sugar cream pie. The first time I had it was when a cousin brought it to our house one Thanksgiving a few years ago. They grew the cushaw themselves and gave us seeds to grow our own. We did the next year, but we didn’t preserve the seeds properly. She was killed in a car accident a couple of years later, so the memory is extra sweet.

The link below has pictures of the cushaws, a recipe similar to the one we used and a description of the flavor and uses. It is a favorite at our house and we always look for cushaws at farmers markets and such. They’re rare, but worth the trouble if you can find them. And this is from a woman who doesn’t like pumpkin at all!”


Vanilla Mashed Sweet Potatoes from Kaycee Sasser

“I used sea salt, and regular pepper, and I mashed them by hand.”

Vanilla mashed Sweet potatos

  • 1 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes, cleaned and left a bit damp
  • 1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/3 vanilla bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • kosher salt
  • white pepper in a mill

Preheat the oven to 350F. Put the potatoes on a baking sheet and bake in the oven until tender to a fork tip, about 1 hour. Remove from oven and let cook until warm enough to handle, 10 to 15 minutes. Peel and discard the skin. Put the potatoes in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade.

Meanwhile, pour the cream into a 2-quart pot, add the vanilla bean and orange zest, if using, and set it over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Use tongs to fish out and discard the vanilla bean. Pour the mixture over the potatoes in the processor and add the butter.

Puree the potato mixture until smooth. Season with salt and 4 grinds of pepper, or to taste. Keep covered and warm until ready to serve.

Serves Four.

Marinades for Turkey from Justina Welch

turkeymarinades Citrus N’ Spice Marinade

  • 1 /34 cups of sunflower oil or olive oil
  • ¾ cups orange juice
  • ¼ cup cider vinegar
  • 10 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tbls sea salt
  • 3 tbls lime juice
  • 3 tbls dired oregano
  • 2 chipotles in adobo sauce
  • 1 tbls ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground allspice

Combine cider vinegar, garlic, salt, oregano, chipotles in a blender. Process until smooth.  Pour in remaining ingredients and continue blending until oil is emulsified. Spread marinade over turkey surface.  Place in roasting bad or wrap in aluminum foil. Marinate for 12-24 hours prior to cooking.


Lemon Rosemary Marinade (my favorite)

  • 3 large lemons
  • ¼ cup fresh rosemary or 3 tbls dried
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 6 cloves of garlic (minced)

Cut lemons in half squeeze juice into plastic (non reactive) bowl. Throw in lemon halves and remaining ingredients.  Mix in blender, leave somewhat chunky.  Spread over turkey.  Marinate for minimum 4 hours prior to cooking




Left over turkey?  Try this recipe!file000886370220

Rosemary Turkey Soup

  • 1 chopped onion (1-1.5 cups)
  • 1 cup chopped celery.
  • 1.5 cups sliced carrots
  • 4 cloves garlic minced or pressed
  • 1 tbls dried thyme
  • 2 tbls fresh rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups cooked wild rice
  • ½ package of Amish egg noodles or Kluski noodles
  • 2 tbls cornstarch
  • Salt & Pepper to taste


Add turkey carcass and leftover meat to large pan with chicken stock (4 containers, I use organic, low sodium).  Saute onions, celery and carrots until onions are soft and translucent (I use olive oil).  Add garlic and thyme sauté for one minute.  Dump in pan with turkey, bring to a boil reduce heat and simmer for 1-1.5 hours.  Then add cooked wild rice and noodles.  Once noodles are done, add cornstarch and water-to make a slurry- add to soup while constantly stirring to thicken slightly. Check/adjust seasonings (I sometimes add 1 more sprig of fresh rosemary leaves at this point).  Ready to serve.

Candy Canes

Candy Cane Fudge from Laura Bedilion

“Candy cane fudge is something my mom always made for Christmas when I was a kid. I found a very similar recipe online and it’s delicious (but very addicting)!”


Baked Pineapple from Denise Dixon

“This recipe I have used for many years for holiday as well as everyday when we have ham. It is a great side dish with ham, although it can also be a dessert.”

Baked Pineapple

  • 2 cans pineapple chunks, drained
  • 1/4 c. flour
  • 1/2 c. sugar (sugar substitute works well too, as long as you can bake with it)


  • 1 stack of ritz crackers
  • 1 stick of butter

Mix pineapple, flour and sugar well. You will have juice with pineapple after mixing. Pour into baking dish. Bake at 400 degrees until hot and bubbly. Meanwhile, crumble Ritz crackers. melt butter and mix with crackers. Top pineapple with crumbs and bake until cracker mixture is browned. Serve hot.


Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies from Kerrie Lafky

“I found this recipe on line and it was inspired by cookies that were served at the Holiday Inn Express in Harrison, OH.  This is the hotel Hubert uses for their overnight visitors.  I’ve stayed there a few times; and each time I’ve been there they have fresh cookies for their guests.  When I was there this past December they had Cranberry Oatmeal cookies with white chocolates chips.  They were so good that I went back downstairs to the lobby for more.  I talked to a woman at the desk and she said she made them and proceeded to tell me what was in them.  I was able to find a recipe on line that matched up.  I think what made them special is they have cardamon in them which is kind of expensive but worth it.  If you don’t want to spend the money on cardamon, you can substitute pumpkin pie spice mix, allspice, ginger or just more cinnamon or nutmeg based on your taste.  So here it is straight from the ‘Hubert Hotel.'”



  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 ¾ cups of flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon cardamon
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips



Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Cream butter and sugars until fluffy.  Add eggs and vanilla.  Combine dry ingredients.  Add to butter mixture and stir until well blended.  Add dried cranberries and white chocolate chips.  Drop by teaspoonful onto parchment covered baking sheet.  Bake about 10 to 12 minutes, or until lightly golden.  Cool.

Baked Ziti from Tracey Rector

Years ago when I began to explore cooking, I found this incredibly easy Baked Ziti recipe, hence its original author’s title, “Easy Baked Ziti.”

Over the years I’ve made small tweaks and this is my version.  Visit About.com’s Southern Food website for the original recipe by Diana Rattray.


  • I box ziti or rigatoni noodles
  • 1 can traditional marinara sauce (or feel free to test out different flavors you like such as three cheese, roasted garlic parmesan or meat)
  • 16 oz. tub of Ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Optional: 1 pound ground beef

The original recipe calls for two tablespoons of Lawry’s Seasoned Salt, or add/subtract to taste. I tried putting it in a few times, but have since not put much at all in anymore.

With the ground beef, the original recipe doesn’t call for it—and you really don’t notice there isn’t meat. I added it once to test it, and now many times if I make it, I throw in ground beef.


  1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F
  2. Cook noodles (and ground beef if you choose to add it) according to directions
  3. Place the noodles and ground beef in a 9”x13” pan
  4. Mix in ricotta cheese, mozzarella, sauce and salt (if you choose to add it)
  5. Lightly coat top with mozzarella cheese
  6. Bake in oven.  Original recipe says to bake for 45 minutes, but my oven cooks more quickly and many times I’ve taken it out at 25 to 30 minutes.
  7. Sprinkle top with parmesan cheese and serve. Great to serve with breadsticks or garlic bread.

Absolutely the Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the holiday season. Here is a cookie recipe from All Recipes perfect for all your holiday events. Don’t forget to use the blog on Central’s cooking tips with information for making the best cookies.

Absolutely the Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Ready In: 20 minutes
Servings: 24 (2 dozen)


  • 1 cup butter flavored shortening
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons Mexican vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups milk chocolate chips


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease cookie sheets.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter flavored shortening, brown sugar and white sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well with each addition, then stir in the vanilla. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt; gradually stir into the creamed mixture. Finally, fold in the chocolate chips. Drop by rounded spoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheets.
  3. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, until light brown. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Footnotes, Editors Note

Mexican vanilla extract can be found in Mexican grocery stores. If you can’t find it, feel free to substitute regular vanilla extract.

Nutritional Information

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 241 | Total Fat: 13.7g | Cholesterol: 22mg

Central’s Tips for Thanksgiving Cooking

As we approach the Thanksgiving weekend, here are a few cooking tips from Central. Please feel free to share yours with us and all the other blog readers!

How to cut an onion without crying?


Image from FreeDigitPhotos.net

All methods below will reduce the volatility of the sulfide that causes irritation:

  • Use sweet onions
  • Peeling and cutting under running water
  • Refrigerating onions before chopping


Reduce clean up time


Use kitchen scissors to chop fresh mint, chilies and coriance finely with any mess.

Measure your ingredients carefully

Use metal or plastic nested cups for dry ingredients like flour and sugar, and graduated glass or plastic cups with spouts for liquids. If you use the liquid measuring cup for flour you may get an extra tablespoon or more per cup, which could make cookies hard and dry. To measure flour, lightly spoon it from the canister into the measuring cup and level it with a straight edge of a spatula or knife. Do not tap or shake the cup to level it. When measuring brown sugar, pack it firmly into the dry measuring cup so that it holds its shape when it is removed.

Make the best cookies


  1. Bake one sheet of cookies at a time. Center the rack in the middle of the oven. If you put two baking sheets in the oven at one time, it is best to switch their positions halfway through the baking time. Allow cookie sheets to cool thoroughly between batches. Putting the dough onto hot cookie sheets may cause the cookies to spread and brown too much around the edges.
  2. Use flat baking sheets or those with very low edges. Shiny, heavy gauge aluminum is best; dark cookie sheets may cause excessive browning. For best results, the cookie sheets should be one to two inches smaller than the oven rack on all sides to allow for proper air circulation.
  3. Prepare cookie sheets and baking pans as directed before you begin to mix the recipe. If light greasing is suggested, use vegetable oil spray or a small amount of solid vegetable shortening. Do not use butter or margarine as it may burn on cookie sheets. You might also want to use bakers’ parchment paper (available in many supermarkets and specialty stores) instead of greasing cookie sheets — it will also save on cleanup time!
  4. Make cookies in the same batch the same size and shape. Arrange pieces of cookie dough in even rows on the baking sheets so they heat evenly. Do not leave large empty spaces; this may cause cookies to burn.
  5. Freeze baked cookies for months of ready-made snacks. Cooled cookies, double-wrapped in plastic sheets or plastic storage bags will last up to three months. To thaw, remove cookies from freezer, unwrap and place them in a single layer on wire racks for 15 to 30 minutes. Store uneaten cookies in a tightly covered container.