Sunday, December 12, 2010

Some Cookie Recipes

My grandmother was an amazing cookie baker.  She baked and sold cookies during the holidays and it was always a treat to get a box of her assorted varieties.  Here are a couple of favorite recipes that others have asked for recently.

Grandmom called these cookies "Crescents" when she rolled them in a crescent shape and then coated them with powedered sugar.  Others call the Russian Tea Cakes, Mexican Wedding Cakes or "Those Little White Ones".  Whatever you call them, they are delicious!

Mexican Wedding Cakes

1 cup butter
 2 teaspoons vanilla
 1/2 teaspoon salt
 2 cups finely chopped or ground pecans (walnuts can also be used)
 1/3 cup granulated sugar
 2 cups all purpose flour
 1 tablespoon water

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Cream butter, sugar, vanilla and water until light.
Blend in flour, salt and nuts.  Using the lowest speed of the mixer,  blend until well mixed.
Using about 1 teaspoon dough, shape into a ball (or use a cookie scoop.)
Place on ungreased cookie sheet.  These can be spaced closely, as they do not spread much.  (I fit 70 on a half sheet pan.)  Bake at 325 degrees for 15-20 minutes.  When cool, roll in confectioner's sugar.

Pressed Butter Cookies 
Gertrude Young

2 C Butter 
4 eggs
2 ¼ C sugar 
½ tsp salt
1 tsp almond extract 
5 1/3 C flour

Cream butter and sugar until very light. 
Add extract. 
Add eggs, 2 at a time. 
Continue beating until thoroughly creamed. 
Reduce Mixer speed to lowest speed & add flour and salt. 
Do not over mix. 
Put through press in a variety of appropriate shapes. 
Bake in preheated 400° oven for 9 minutes. T
he cookies should be lightly browned on bottom and around edges. Yield: about 3 lbs cookies.

Some hints for pressed cookies

1. Do not chill dough unless recipe calls for it (few do).
2. Decorate before baking with candied fruit, cherries, nuts or colored sugars.
3. Decorate after baking with thin icing [confectioners sugar and water] & assorted toppings or chopped nuts.
4 Use butter instead of margarine because butter improves in flavor in storage.
5. Flavoring can be changed to suit (ie: Vanilla, lemon, etc.).
6. Food coloring can be added as desired. I add mine during creaming if I’m just making one color.

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