I live in a house full of cookie monsters, so I’m thrilled to be participating in the Faith and Family LIVE! Christmas Cookie Swap. Bloggers were invited to share their favorite recipe for cookies or other seasonal treats.
We do a lot of baking around here. This Advent we’re cutting back on baking just because we’ve been engaged in constant germ warfare (who wants to nosh on cookies baked in a kitchen that should be quarantined?), and I’m still experiencing some pregnancy-induced nausea so sometimes even chocolate, gasp, doesn’t sound appetizing.
That said, we still plan on whipping up a few goodies, namely our famous holiday sugar cookies where I allow Madeline to go crazy with the frosting and sprinkles. (Then perfectionist Mommy makes a few cookies of her own.) If you’d prefer letting your kids decorate some virtual cookies, check out this fun, interactive website a friend of mine passed along to me.
As for my cookie swap contributions, I share two favorite recipes below. Enjoy!
German Crescent Cookies
My mom has been making these cookies (courtesy of her German grandmother) every Christmas for as long as I can remember, and they’re always big hit. They freeze well and are the perfect addition to a cup of coffee or cocoa.
1/2 pound butter (2 sticks)
2 cups of flour
2 cups of chopped pecans
5 tablespoons of powdered sugar
2 teaspoons of vanilla
1 tablespoon of water
1/2 teaspoon salt
Combine all ingredients except for powdered sugar. Divide dough up and roll into small crescents. Bake for 20 minutes at 325º (cookies should be a golden brown). Roll warm cookies in powdered sugar.
UPDATE: Great questions on this post. Can you tell this is a family recipe that we sort of just instinctively know how to do? My directions were not clear at all (Sorry! Pregnesia strikes again!), so I’ve added some details. As for freezing, I imagine the dough would freeze well, but we’ve always just stored the baked cookies in an air-tight container lined with wax paper in the freezer.
Whole Wheat Cranberry Nut Bread
Ever since my mom-in-law introduced me to this recipe, we make this bread every Christmas. This year we made three mini loaves and passed them along to Madeline’s Catechesis of the Good Shepherd teacher and a friendly postal worker. (We kept one loaf for ourselves.) The bread is tasty and healthy and makes for a nutritious breakfast when served with milk and a piece of fruit.
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon grated orange rind
2 tablespoons canola oil
1/2 cup honey
1 egg, beaten
1 cup coarsely chopped cranberries (the “real” kind, not dried cranberries)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Mix dry ingredients together. Combine OJ, orange rind, oil, and enough hot water to make 3/4 cup liquid. Add to dry ingredients. Add honey and egg, and mix well. Fold in cranberries and walnuts. Pour into loaf pan and bake at 325º for one hour. If you’re using three mini loaf pans instead of one standard pan, cut cooking time in half and check bread by inserting a toothpick in the middle of the loaf. If it comes out clean, the bread’s ready. Allow to cool in pan for about 10 minutes. Then place on a wire rack to cool completely.