My sister-in-law, T, received two baking books for Christmas: "Hello, Cupcake!: Irresistibly Playful Creations Anyone Can Make" by Alan Richardson and Karen Tack (website) and "Martha Stewart's Cookies." Our original intention was to bake "Rabbit in the Hole" cupcakes but the recipe requires two very special ingredients, not available at the grocery store: circus peanuts and chocolate-covered sunflower seeds! So, we looked to Martha's book and decided upon the Carrot Cake Cookies; carrot cake is T's favorite cake. The final products from the recipe are carrot cake sandwich cookies, but the cookies are good singly and without the cream cheese frosting.
T is very organized and prepared a mis-en-scene of ingredients.
We learned a few lessons from our baking: (1) Use cookie, not baking, sheets (the edges of the cookies burnt when baked on baking sheets); (2) Coarsely shredded carrots work well, adding festive bursts of color to the cookies (the recipe calls for finely grated carrots).