Stirring it up! Special baked goods play a key role in many of the winter holidays whether it be Christmas, Chanukka, Pancha Ganapati, Kwanzaa, Chinese New Year or any number of others celebrations. Here’s a yummy recipe for cookies to help us encourage winter.
- 2 c. pecans
- 1 c. butter, softened
- 1/4 c. icing sugar
- 2 c. all-purpose flour
- 1/2 t. salt
- 1 1/2t. vanilla
- 1 c. icing sugar (for rolling cookies in)
- On a baking sheet, bake the pecans at 350° for 7 to 9 minutes, or until fragrant, stirring once. Let cool then chop finely and set aside.
- In a large bowl, cream butter with sugar until smooth.
- Beat in vanilla.
- With a wooden spoon, stir in flour, salt and pecans using your (clean!) hands to finish the mixing and to form the dough into a mound.
- Wrap in plastic wrap, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Form dough into 1 inch balls and place 1 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet.
- Bake at 325° for 18 – 20 minutes or until lightly golden.
- Remove to racks and let cool for 5 minutes.
- Using the 1 cup of icing sugar, roll baked cookie balls in icing sugar then return to rack to cool completely.
- Roll once again in icing sugar.
- Snowballs can be stored in an airtight container for up to one week or frozen for up to 3 months.
Makes about 40.
Dishing it out! My first Christmas in Texas, my friend Jacquie invited me to a cookie exchange at her home. While I can’t remember the exact number of guests, I believe were each to make 5 dozen cookies of the same recipe, bring them festively wrapped in groups of four, along with 12 copies of our recipe and a cookie tin for our own collection of cookies. One dozen of the cookies were for refreshments at the party, the others were for sharing, 4 of each variety went into our tins. We visited over glasses of wine and plates of cookies – what a wonderful variety of delights for so little work!. I’m not sure how Jacquie managed to organize it, but after several years there were, I think, upwards of 30 ladies at the cookie exchange. No, we didn’t have to make 30 dozen cookies – Jacquie did some mathematical magic and we each went home with a super selection of our friends’ baking. Thanks, Jacquie, for your recipe for Pecan Snowballs.