Hannah | Kiffles
“These are something my family LOVES and are so good in our Amish/Dutch home area”
8 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
Powdered sugar, for rolling and sprinkling
1 can Solo Apricot pastry filling
1 can Solo Cherry pastry filling
1 large egg, lightly beaten with a splash of water
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, combine the cream cheese and butter. Gradually add the flour while continuing to beat until a soft, sticky dough forms. Bring the dough together into a ball in the bowl with clean hands, then cover with plastic wrap. Let chill in the refrigerator for 3 hours.
Divide the dough into quarters. Dust a clean work surface with flour and powdered sugar and roll out the first quarter until ? inch thick. Using a 1½- to 2-inch square cutter, depending on how big you want them, cut out perfect little squares. Be sure to cut them out as close together as possible to minimize scraps. Take the scraps and roll them out again to cut out as many squares as possible. Arrange the squares on a rimmed baking sheet.
Scoop ½ teaspoon of the apricot filling into the center of the first square. Bring two of the opposite corners together and pinch to seal. It will look like a tiny cannoli. Repeat until all the squares are filled and formed. Repeat the process with the next quarter of the dough but use the cherry filling for the second batch. Brush the kiffles with the egg wash to help seal.
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until golden brown.
Let the kiffles cool for 5 minutes before transferring to wire racks. While still warm, dust with powdered sugar. Let cool completely. Repeat the whole process with the last half of the dough, making a tray of apricot and a tray of cherry.
Hannah | M&M Christmas Cookies
½ cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
½ cup light brown sugar, packed
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 + ½ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup M&M’s (plus a little more for the tops)
Preheat oven to 350F.
In a large mixing bowl, use a hand mixer or stand mixer cream together butter and sugars on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
Add egg and vanilla and beat on low until incorporated.
Add flour, baking soda, and salt and stir with a large wooden spoon until just combined. Fold in M&M’s.
Use a medium cookie scoop to scoop out 2 tablespoons of cookie dough. Drop onto a large half sheet baking tray lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. For a cookie with smooth edges, use your hands to roll it into a ball. Space the cookies a few inches apart (you can fit about 6-8 on a large cookie sheet). Press in extra M&M’s into the top of the cookies.
Bake for 8-10 minutes, until edges just start to brown. The cookies may not look done in the middle, but they will continue to cook as they are cooling. Remove from oven and allow the cookies to cool in the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
Kyra | Earl Grey Tea Cookies
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons loose Earl Grey tea leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature
In a food processor, pulse together the flour, tea, and salt, until the tea is just spotted throughout the flour. Add the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, and butter. Pulse together just until a dough is formed.
Place dough on a sheet of plastic wrap, and roll into a log, about 2 1/2-inches in diameter. Tightly twist each end of wrap, and chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Slice the log into 1/3-inch-thick disks. Place on parchment or silpat lined baking sheets, 2 inches apart (2 probably needed depending on size of sheets).
Bake until the edges are just brown, about 12 minutes. Let cool on sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire racks and cool to room temperature.
April | Christmas Florentines
1oz light brown soft sugar
3 1/2oz Carnation Condensed Milk
2tsp plain flour
5 1/2oz mixed dried fruit and nuts such as apricots, cranberries, blueberries, cherries, toasted flaked almonds, desiccated coconut etc.
3oz dark chocolate
Preheat the oven to 180C, (350-360F) or Gas Mark 4.
Melt the butter and sugar in a non-stick saucepan stirring until combined. Add the condensed milk and heat until just bubbling. Stir in the plain flour and mix until smooth. Stir in the dried fruit and nuts.
Place spoonfuls of the mixture onto parchment lined baking sheets and bake for about 12 minutes until turning golden brown at the edges.
Leave to cool on the tray. When cool, melt the chocolate, and spread a small amount on the flat side of the Florentine then drag a fork through the chocolate to make wavy lines.
Sunny | Italian Christmas Cookie
¾ cup butter, softened
½ cup powdered sugar
½ cup sugar
3 cups flour
¾ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ anise extract
2 cups powdered sugar + extra
3 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.
In a mixing bowl, beat butter and sugars until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, then add the vanilla and anise flavoring. Slowly mix in flour mixture. Do not overbeat.
Refrigerate dough for one hour. When ready to bake, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Roll dough into 1-inch balls. Dip the bottom of a small glass in some powdered sugar and press each ball down slightly with the glass.
Bake 8-10 minutes. Remove and cool completely.
For the glaze, sift two cups of powdered sugar in a bowl. Whisk in milk and vanilla. Dip top of each cookie in the glaze. Garnish with sprinkles. Allow glaze to dry before freezing.
Jenna | Classic Buckeyes
1 jar Jif creamy peanut butter
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
4-5 cups powdered sugar
2 cups milk chocolate chips
2 oz. paraffin wax
“Plan on making more because everyone loves these little guys.”
In a big ole bowl or your stand mixer bowl, cream together butter and peanut butter.
Slowly add in powdered sugar, 1/2 cup at a time. You’ll know when your peanut butter mixture is ready when you can pull off about a tablespoon and easily roll it into a ball. If it’s sticking to your hand too much, you need to add more powdered sugar. If it’s just a little too soft, you can put your dough in the refrigerator for an hour or so to make it a little stiffer.
Roll the dough into balls and place on wax-paper lined baking sheets, about an inch apart. Refrigerate in ball form for an hour.
Meanwhile, melt your wax in a double boiler. Once it’s melted, add in chocolate chips. Stir until fully melted and incorporated.
Remove your balls from your fridge. Using a toothpick, dip the balls into the chocolate, leaving a bit of the peanut butter showing on the top. Place back onto the wax paper. Repeat until all your buckeyes have been dipped. Go back over the toothpick holes with a butter knife to smooth them over.
If your house is warm, pop them back in the fridge for a half hour.