Christmas Cookies

>> Friday, December 12, 2008

Yesterday, my mom and the three little kids and I spent the last half of the day baking. And baking.
And baking.
And strangely, in the end, we had only 4 kinds of cookies and a kitchen that looked like it had been through a tornado. But, we had fun and stuffed ourselves on cookies, and that's all that matters =)

We made...
Kissie Cookies (my favorite)

Thumprint cookies (also my favorite) with raspberry and strawberry jam.

And pinwheel cookies. My second attempt. Last year, I tried a recipe that wasn't good. This year, I found one that uses a marble cake mix. And it still wasn't good. Bland, kinda tasteless, and dry.
But don't they look cool?

Oh, and snowball cookies (my other favorite)

...Really, I can't pick one favorite. It's impossible.

The helpers:

....well, they helped eat the cookies, anyway :)

The recipes:

Kissie Cookies
1 3/4 C. sifted all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 C. butter
1/2 C. peanut butter
1/2 C. sugar
1/2 C. packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 375.
2. Sift together flour, soda and salt.
3. In separate bowl, cream together butter and sugars. Gradually add peanut butter. Add egg and vanilla. Beat well. Blend in the flour mixture. Mix thoroughly.
4. Shape dough into small balls. Roll balls in sugar and place on ungreased cookie sheet.
5. Bake at 375 for 8 minutes. Remove sheet from oven and place a chocolate kiss on top of each cookie, pressing down firmly so that the cookie cracks around the edges. Return cookies to oven. Bake 2-5 minutes or less, just until kiss is shiny and cookies are golden.

To make those super-cute little cookies in the first picture, shape the dough into tiny balls, bake for just a few minutes, and then top with a chocolate chip.

Thumbprint Cookies
1 C. unsalted butter, softened
1/2 C. packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/8 tsp. salt
2 C. all-purpose flour
1/4 C. seedless raspberry or strawberry jam
1 C. finely chopped nuts

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease cookie sheets.
2. Beat butter and sugar together in large bowl at low speed until mixture becomes fluffy. Separate eggs and beat in egg yolks, vanilla and salt until blended.
3. Add flour all at once. Beat at low speed, scraping side of bowl often, 2 minutes or until well mixed.
4. Shape dough into balls. Roll in lightly beaten egg white, then nuts. Place on a cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake at 350 for about 8 minutes.
5. Remove cookies from oven. With thumb, or the bottom of a rounded 1/2 teaspoon, dent each cookie. Put jelly or preserves in each thumbprint. Bake another 8 minutes.

We'll just skip the pinwheel cookies recipe...

Snowball Cookies
1 C. butter, softened
1/2 C. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 1/4 C. all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 C. finely chopped nuts
Powdered sugar

1. Preheat oven to 400.
2. Beat butter, 1/2 cup powdered sugar and vanilla in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed. Stir in flour and salt. Stir in nuts.
3. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place about 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.
4. Bake 8-9 minutes or until set, but not brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheet; roll in powdered sugar. Cool completely on wire rack. Roll in powdered sugar again when cool.

~ Happy Cooking! ~


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