The Cookie Crumbles

Cookies with Tree

If you are looking for some great Christmas cookie recipes and some information to make the cookies extra delicious you have come to the right place. Whether you are looking for something new to spice up your cookie collection or a tried and true favorite here are some of the best.

Cookie Press-these type of cookies are made by forcing the dough through a disk with a hole in the center of it, giving the cookie a shape such as a star, a Christmas tree, a heart, etc.

Almond Cream Spritz

Makes about 60
1 cup butter, softened
1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
Finely chopped almonds

Preheat oven to 375 F. Beat butter and cream cheese in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, almond extract, and vanilla; beat till combined. Stir in flour. Cover and chill dough for 30 minutes or until easily worked but not too stiff. Pack dough into a cookie press. Force dough through press onto ungreased cookie sheets. Sprinkle with almonds. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until edges of cookies are firm but not brown. Allow to cool on baking sheet one minute then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Tip-Be sure to chill the dough only as long as the recipe calls for since chilling too long will make the dough too stiff to work through the cookie press.

Bar cookies-these cookies are a cross between a cake and a cookie. Keep in mind that bar cookies are baked in a pan. The unbaked dough is usually stiff and must be spread or patted into the pan. After baking and cooling, the bars should have a thin, delicate crust and a moist crumb.

Caramel Candy Bars

Makes about 54
1 (14 ounce) package caramel candies, unwrapped
1/3 cup milk
2 cups unbleached flour
2 cups oats
1-1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 cup butter, softened
1 (6 ounce) package semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts or dry roasted peanuts

Pre-heat oven to 350° F. Grease a 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking pan. Heat candies and milk in 2-quart saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently, until smooth; remove from heat. Mix flour, oats, brown sugar, baking soda, salt and egg in large bowl. Stir in butter with fork until mixture is crumbly. Press half of the crumbly mixture in pan. Bake 10 minutes. Sprinkle with chocolate chips and walnuts; drizzle with caramel mixture. Sprinkle remaining crumbly mixture over top. Bake until golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool 30 minutes. Loosen edges from sides of pan; cool completely. Cut into 2 x 1-inch bars.

Tip-be careful not to overmix your bar cookie dough, as over mixing will result in a tough cookie with a dry and crumbly top.

Bake bar cookies only until the cookies appear dull and a slight imprint remains after touching the surface with a fingertip. Test cake-like bars for doneness with a wooden pick.

Filled Cookies-these cookies come in all shapes and sizes, but are all filled with all sorts of delicious fillings such as fruit preserves, nuts, or cream.

Bordeaux Fudge Cookies
1 cup butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 unbeaten egg yolk
2 cups flour
1/2 lb. See’s Bordeaux fudge (can be obtained from See’s Candy website, catalog or store)
1/2 teaspoon salt

Cream butter and gradually add brown sugar. Mix well. Blend in egg yolk. Add flour and salt. Stir until it forms dough. Chill until firm. Shape into small balls. Put on baking sheet and make indentation in center of each ball. Place small squares of Bordeaux fudge in middle of indentation. Bake at 325 degrees for 8-10 minutes.

Tip-You can substitute vanilla or chocolate fudge for Bordeaux fudge, but using the Bordeaux makes these exquisite. These cookies are very simple, yet very special!



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