Christmas cookies! It’s that time of year again, when I get out the baking equipment and start making cookies and other wonderful yummies. I’m also listening to wonderful Christmas or holiday music from Michael Buble, which really puts me into the mood for the season.
Which brings to mind that I sometimes have problems with the proper etiquette of whether to say Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays to everyone. It just seems that it’s gotten so crazy with people getting offended so easily, but does it all really matter when someone is happy and saying nice things, whether it’s your holiday or not? I’m never offended when someone wishes me a Happy Hanukkah instead of Christmas, I’m actually just as happy because I know it’s a good thing to celebrate your own personal faith and share it. But anyway, back to the Christmas cookies!
I love shortbread style cookies because they aren’t as sweet but are so delicious and versatile to make into almost any flavor. I came across a recipe for Greek Butter Cookies that with a few adjustments are wonderful. They even have the stamp of approval from my New York neighbor as being “cookies only found in New York.” LOL, I guess we can say that isn’t true now since these cookies are being made in Denver, CO.
The advantage to these cookies is that you can roll them out and use the cookie cutters or the cookie press or shape them however you like. If rolling them, make sure you chill the dough in the fridge for a bit to take away the stickiness. Then decorate with whatever you like. I half dipped mine in melted yogurt chips and semi-sweet chocolate and then dipped them in crushed walnuts and crushed candy cane (from Hammond’s Candy Factory, a Denver staple). My husband loved the walnut ones the best but I thought both were good (I still want to try a fresh lemon glaze on a batch as well).
The cookies were better the next day then they were fresh out of the oven (still awesome) but the flavors of the almond came through so much more on the second day. And did I mention how easy these were to make. They also pair wonderfully with hot chocolate, tea and coffee (leave them plain for dipping). And without further ado here’s the recipe for yummy buttery, almond Greek Butter Cookies.
Greek Butter Cookies
1 cup butter, softened not melted (no substitutes)
3/4 cup white sugar
1 egg (room temp.)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp. almond extract
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
Your choices of toppings
Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease cookies sheets.
In a medium bowl, cream together the butter (room temp. is best for constancy), sugar and egg until smooth and fluffy. Add the vanilla and almond extracts and mix well. Blend in the flour. Dough may become stiff at the end and some hand kneading might be necessary to work all the flour in. You are now ready to make your cookies. If rolling out to cut out shapes, place in the fridge to chill for about an hour. If using a press or shaping by hand then you can start immediately.
Bake for 8 minutes in the oven, or until lightly browning on the edges and firm. If you allow to brown all over, they will be brunt. Remove cookies from cookie sheets to wire rack to cool. Cool completely before decorating.
Other Great Cookie Recipes to Check Out