Sweets season: Reader Christmas cookie recipes

Sweets season: Reader Christmas cookie recipes

Christmas Hickory Nut Cookies

— From Madonna Schroeder, of Columbus Grove

1 cup coconut

3/4 cup hickory nuts, chopped

1 cup butter, softened

1 1/2 cups brown sugar, packed

1/2 cup white sugar

2 eggs

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

2 cups flour, sifted

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups old-fashioned or quick oats

1/4 cup dark chocolate chips

1/4 cup red and green M&Ms or other holiday chocolate chips

1/4 cup white chocolate chips

1/4 cup dried cherries

1/4 cup dried apricots

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toast coconut and hickory nuts for 6 to 8 minutes in a 15-by-10-by-1-inch baking pan. Watch closely so they don’t burn. Set aside to cool.

In large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla; beat well.

In a separate bowl, combine and sift the flour, baking soda and salt. Add to creamed mixture; beat well.

Stir in the oats, chocolate, fruit, coconut and nuts.

Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto parchment-covered baking sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes or until browned. Remove to wire racks to cool.

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Snowball Cookies

— From Elaine Fisher, of Wapakoneta

1/2 cup Crisco Light Olive Oil

1 1/4 cups quick oats

1 box white cake mix

2 eggs, lightly beaten

2 teaspoons vanilla

1/2 cup walnuts, finely chopped

Powdered sugar

In a bowl, combine oil and oats. Let stand for 5 minutes.

Stir in cake mix, eggs and vanilla. Fold in nuts.

Form into 1-inch balls. Place on ungreased baking sheet 2 inches apart.

Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes or until set. Let stand 1 minute before removing to rack to cool.

Roll cookies in powdered sugar while still warm.

Yield: 7 dozen

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Peanut Butter Snowballs

— From Elaine Fisher, of Wapakoneta

2 cups non-fat dry milk powder

1 cup chunky or smooth peanut butter

1 cup honey

1 teaspoon vanilla

8 ounces white chocolate candy coating, coarsely chopped

3 cups flaked coconut

Assorted food coloring, optional

In a large bowl, combine the milk powder, peanut butter, honey and vanilla. Shape into 1-inch balls. Place on a wax paper-lined cookie sheet. Let stand uncovered 30 minutes.

In a microwave-safe bowl, melt candy coating. If desired, tint coating with food coloring.

Dip balls in coating, then roll in coconut. Return to baking sheet; let stand until set.

Store in an airtight container.

Yield: 3 dozen

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Dipped Cherry Cookies

— From Elaine Fisher, of Wapakoneta

2 1/2 cups flour

3/4 cup sugar, divided

1 cup cold butter

1/2 cup maraschino cherries, drained and finely chopped

12 squares white baking chocolate, finely chopped, divided

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

2 teaspoons shortening

Coarse sugar or red edible glitter

In a large bowl, combine flour and 1/2 cup sugar. Cut in butter until crumbly. Knead in the cherries, 2/3 cup white chocolate, and extract until dough forms a ball.

Shape into 3/4-inch balls. Place 2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Flatten slightly with glass dipped in remaining sugar.

Bake at 325 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Remove to wire rack to cool.

In a microwave-safe bowl, melt shortening and remaining chocolate; stir until smooth.

Dip half of each cookie into the chocolate. Sprinkle with sugar or glitter. Place on waxed paper until set.

Yield: 4 dozen

Editor’s note: Not a cherry fan? Consider subbing in crushed peppermint candies.

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Pineapple Delights

— From Elaine Fisher, of Wapakoneta

1 cup butter, softened

1 cup sugar

1 cup brown sugar, packed

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

4 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 8-ounce can unsweetened crushed pineapple, drained

1 cup walnuts, chopped

1/4 cup maraschino cherries, drained and chopped

Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla.

Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Gradually add to the creamed ingredients and mix well.

Stir in the pineapple, walnuts and cherries.

Drop by tablespoons 2 inches apart onto an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake at 425 degrees for 7-9 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove to racks to cool.

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Cherry Butter Cookies

— From Theresa Paxson, of Lima

1 cup butter, softened

1/2 cup sugar

1/3 cup light corn syrup

2 egg yolks

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

2 1/2 cups flour

Additional sugar, quantity as needed

1 jar maraschino cherries, drained, cherries cut in half

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in corn syrup, egg yolks and vanilla. Gradually add flour and mix well. Cover and refrigerate one hour.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Roll dough into 1-inch balls. Roll each ball in additional sugar. Place 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Using the end of a wooden spoon, make a indentation in the center of each cookie. Press a cherry half in the center.

Bake for 14 to 16 minutes until lightly brown. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.

Yield: 5 dozen cookies

Paxson writes a mixture of green and red cherries make the cookies look festive.

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Cinnamon Candy Cane Cookies

— From Diana Johnson, of Lima

1 cup butter, soft

1 cup confectioner’s sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 1/2 cups flour

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup red hot candies, crushed

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Red food coloring, optional

2 tablespoons coarse sugar

In large bowl, cream butter and confectioner’s sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla.

In a separate bowl, combine flour and salt. Gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well.

Divide dough in half. Mix candy pieces and cinnamon into one half and tint with food coloring, if desired. Leave the other half of the dough plain.

Shape 1 1/2 teaspoons of plain dough into a 4 1/2 inch rope. Shape 1 1/2 teaspoons of red dough into a 4 1/2 inch rope. On an ungreased baking sheet, place ropes side by side, press together lightly and twist. Curve top of cookie down to form handle of cane. Repeat with remaining plain and red dough, placing 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Sprinkle with coarse sugar.

Bake at 375 degrees for 7-10 minutes or until lightly brown. Cool for 1 minute before removing to wire racks.

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Holiday Sugar Cookies

— From Diana Johnson, of Lima

Cookie dough:

1 cup butter, soft

1 1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

2 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

Decorating ideas:

1/3 cup light corn syrup

Sprinkles

Shoestring licorice

1/3 cup flaked coconut

Mini chocolate chips

Mini M&Ms or candies

Mini marshmallows, cut in half

In large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and extracts.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda and cream of tartar. Gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Divide dough in half. Cover and chill in freezer for 25 minutes until easy to handle.

On a floured surface, roll out one portion of dough, 1/8 of an inch thick. Cut into desired shapes.

Bake at 350 degrees for 6-8 minutes or until edges are golden brown.

Diana writes that she made the shape of a Christmas bulb. She warmed corn syrup in the microwave for 6-8 seconds, brushed it onto the cookies and added sprinkles. She cut a hole at the top with a straw and threaded licorice when the cookies were finished baking.

For a Santa shape, cut the dough in shape of rectangles. After baking, use corn syrup to adhere coconut for his beard, a candy for his nose, mini chocolate chips for his eyes, red sprinkles for his hat and marshmallows for a pom pom and fur around the hat.

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Holiday Surprise Sugar Cookies

— From Diana Johnson, of Lima

1 pouch Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie Mix

1/3 cup butter, soft

1 egg

2 tablespoons flour

16 thin rectangular creme de menthe candy, cut into thirds

Christmas sprinkles, sugars

Heat oven to 375 degrees.

In bowl, stir cookie mix, butter, egg and flour until the dough forms. Roll out on a floured surface to 1/8 of an inch thick. Using a 1 1/2-inch round or square cookie cutter, cut an even number of shapes. Sandwich a creme de menthe candy on one shape and top with a second shape, pressing closed with a fork. Decorate before baking.

Bake 6-8 minutes until edges are light brown. Cool 1 minute.

Salt Magazine