Christmas baking was always a big deal with my Mom, and to this day she still goes all out to make a fuss at the holidays. Even though we live almost a continent away, she will send me a care package of shortbread cookies to share with the kids every year. There’s something about comfort foods like this that really brings family together, even across the miles.
This holiday season, add a new recipe to your baking repertoire. Check out this collection of fabulous Christmas cookie recipes from the writers of the Yahoo Contributor Network.
Christmas Sugar Cookies with Spice
In our house, sugar cookies always had grated orange zest in them. When I began baking my own cookies I experimented with a number of variants on Mom’s recipe, including several that used sweet spices like cardamom or nutmeg. This recipe from AC’s Betsy Lewis was a tradition in her aunt’s home, and once you try it you may find it becomes part of your own family’s holiday celebrations too.
OK, this one isn’t a cookie! But if you’re anything like me, you’ll find a lot of the commercially prepared gingerbread cookies are about as appetizing as a hardened cake of plain flour and water. They look pretty, and they smell like ginger, but they’re hard enough to break a tooth on and they taste like they weren’t meant to be eaten. Forget the cookies! Bake up a batch of light, fluffy, spicy gingerbread cake instead. This is another recipe from Betsy Lewis. Gingerbread cake is best served warm, with a dollop of whipped cream on top.
Melt in Your Mouth Shortbread
You have not tasted shortbread until you’ve tried the kind made with icing sugar and cornstarch! These are the stuff of childhood fantasies! My Mom got her recipe from a woman she met while stationed in Nova Scotia, but Gwendolyn Taylor has shared her recipe for you right here at AC. I prefer mine made with butter for a richer taste, and topped with half a glazed cherry.
Peanut Butter Balls
The very first time I remember eating peanut butter balls, I was at a school party in kindergarten. I was so proud, because my Mom’s recipe was one of the most popular of all. And boy, were they ever good! Dena Bolton offers us a chocolate dipped version of this easy, no-bake holiday treat. They also work really well rolled in coconut or chopped nuts. Another variant my kids particularly love is the one I make with Nutella instead of peanut butter. Chop up some glazed cherries and mix them into the dough, then roll lightly in icing sugar.
Around here we have to buy eggnog several cartons at a time, and even at that we can barely keep it in the house long enough to return it to the fridge! But if somehow you do end up with surplus eggnog, use it to make cookies! This recipe from Associated Content’s R.F. is very simple and will make a batch of tasty, rich treats for the family. I love the idea of using candy cane Hershey’s kisses as toppers!