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In this household, the oven is practically everybody’s best friend during the festive season. It has a part in everything: cakes, pies, turkey, sides, cookies for sending to loved ones overseas. Now, our oven (which is also a microwave) is kind of a challenge during the holidays – it is not particularly large (the turkey is always a tight squeeze and holiday baking takes about 15 times as long because only 2 small cookie trays can fit in at a time) and I am convinced it doesn’t quite bake at the temperature it should. And we have had our fair share of oven nightmares, like the one time our old one just went ahead and broke. That’s right, it just went all rogue and shut down amidst christmas baking a few days before our holiday feast. So this year, I am making a little calendar for the oven’s sake, complete with little oven rest breaks, just so we can avoid any disasters and get through the holidays in one piece.

I’ve been looking through a ton of recipe sites to get inspired for the start of holiday baking. I usually bake some simple sturdy sugar cookies for shipping to our friends+family in Canada, complete with manic packing job including layers of bubble wrap and padded airtight containers (although they still do break into smithereens sometimes), but I’m thinking of maybe varying it up a little this year…. we’ll see. Here are some recipes I’m thinking of trying, happy browsing!

1. Christmas pudding cookies, pg30| 2. Brownie cookies with pb frosting| 3. Peppermint meringue sandwiches| 4. Double chocolate peppermint crunch cookies| 5. Candy cane cookies| 6. Red velvet whoopie pies| 7. Peppermint pinwheels|