cookie baking day!

Today my good friend J and I got together for a Christmas cookie baking day!  The idea was that we would each choose three kinds of cookies to make, make them all at my house (I have a double oven), and then split everything up so that we would each end up with a single batch of six different kinds of cookies.  We were a bit over-zealous in our planning, thinking we would each complete three double batches of cookies in a few short hours, so we had to finish our batches later on at our respective homes.  However, the time we spent together was extremely enjoyable, and we managed to get a lot done in the time we spent together.  The icing on the cake (or, in this case, on the cookie) was that our daughters, who are the same age, played the best together that they ever have.  Yay!

I thought I would share the three cookie recipes that I made today with you all.  Enjoy!

1) Christmas Wreath cookies

2) Peanut Candy

  • 1 pound almond bark (I used vanilla-flavored)
  • 12 oz. bag of real chocolate chips
  • 1 pound salted peanuts

Melt almond bark, and melt in chocolate chips.  Stir in nuts and drop into small clusters on waxed paper.  Let cool.  If you double the recipe (like I did), you could use one bag of dark chocolate chips and one bag of milk chocolate.  Suit yourself!

3) Snowballs (aka. Russian Tea Cakes, Swedish Tea Cakes, Mexican Wedding Cakes, Butterballs)

  • 1 C. butter, softened
  • 1/2 C. powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 1/4 C. flour
  • 1/4 tsp. salt (optional)
  • 3/4 – 1 C. finely chopped nuts (I use pecans)
  • powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Cream butter, 1/2 cup powdered sugar, and the vanilla in a large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed.  Add in flour and salt, then add nuts.

Shape dough into 1-inch balls.  Place about 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake 8 to 9 minutes or until set but not brown.  Immediately remove from cookie sheet, and roll in powdered sugar.  Cool completely on wire rack (or, if you’re like me, on an old cereal box opened up with the printed side down).  Roll in powdered sugar again.

Try not to eat all these delicious treats yourself.  Good luck!