Winter Holiday Season Recipes:Cookies

Cookies are part of the winter holiday season for me. I will share a few of my favorite Yule Cookie Recipes. If you can keep them from being eaten straight from the cookie sheet they make great gifts and work wonderful in cookie exchanges. Below is the first installment of recipes for Cookies. More to come soon.

CINNAMON-CHOCOLATE STARS Winter Holiday Season Recipes:Cookies
COOKIES:
1 c. butter, softened
3/4 c. granulated sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 pkg. (6 oz.) semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
3 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
ICING:
1 c. plus 2 tbsp. confectioners’ sugar, sifted
3 tbsp. milk
Gold petal dust (available at gourmet food stores)

DIRECTIONS
For cookies, preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla; beat until smooth. Stir in chocolate. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, cinnamon and salt. Add dry ingredients to chocolate mixture; knead in bowl until a soft dough forms.
On a lightly floured surface, use a floured rolling pin to roll out dough to 1/4 inch thickness. Use star-shaped cookie cutters to cut out cookies. Transfer to a greased baking sheet. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until firm.

For icing, stir sugar and milk together in a medium bowl until smooth. Spread icing on 1/2 of the cookies; allow icing to harden. Use a small paintbrush to apply petal dust to tops of all cookies. Store in an airtight container.

Makes about 7 dozen 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 inch cookies.

FRESH MINT COOKIESWinter Holiday Season Recipes:Cookies
Dough should be prepared one day in advance to allow flavors to blend.

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups butter, softened
2/3 cup superfine granulated sugar
1 egg
2 tablespoons minced fresh mint leaves
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
Granulated sugar

Directions
In a large bowl, cream butter and superfine sugar until fluffy, Add egg, mint leaves, orange zest, and vanilla; beat until smooth. Add flour to creamed mixture; stir until a soft dough forms. Cover dough and chill overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Shape dough into 1 inch balls. Place balls 1 inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Flatten with bottom of a glass dipped in granulated sugar. Bake 7 to 9 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Transfer cookies to wire rack to cool. Store in an airtight container. Makes about six dozen cookies.`

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