A selection of my favorite Christmas cookies

Advent is the time of baking cookies. This tradition dates back to a time when baking ingredients like sugar, spices, almonds, dates, and other dried fruit and nuts were unaffordable and such a luxury that the little biscuits were only made and consumed in the wintertime to sweeten the anticipation for Christmas.

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My Christmas delights this year.

Most of the cookies are based on an easy to make dough for cutting out, which then can be decorated as desired. But even those that require a little more finesse are not that difficult to make. Below you will find 4 of my favorite Christmas cookie recipes. This year I also made my marzipan potatoes and rolled them in edible gold dust for an extra Christmas sparkle :).

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My marzipan potatoes with gold dust.

Don’t forget to try my gingerbread cookies and coconut macaroons. They will perfectly compliment your Christmas cookie plate.

preparing the Christmas ginger cookies with molds
Butter Cookies

Butter Cookies

  • Servings: about 40 cookies
  • Difficulty: very easy
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Ingredients
  • 300 g of plain, all-purpose flour
  • 200 g of butter, at room temperature
  • 100 g of sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
Method
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and knead with your hand until it comes together and forms a smooth, soft dough. Form a ball, wrap it in plastic food wrap and place in the refrigerator for about 1 hour.

  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C / 355°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  3. Roll out the dough, about 1/2 cm thick, on a flour-dusted work surface. Cut out cookies with your favorite Christmas cookie cutters and place them on the prepared baking sheet.

  4. Bake on the middle rack, for 10 minutes.

  5. Pull the cookies together with the parchment from the baking sheet onto a cooling rack. Repeat the process with the remaining dough. Decorate with your favorite icing and sprinkles. Store in an airtight container.

vanille-kipferl
Vanillekipferl (Vanilla Crescent Cookies)

Vanillekipferl (Vanilla Crescent Cookies)

  • Servings: about 30 biscuits
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients
Dough
  • 60 g of ground blanched almonds (almond flour)
  • 100 g of butter, at room temperature
  • 50 g of confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • the pulp of 2 vanilla beans
  • 135 g of plain, all-purpose flour
  • 50 g of sugar
  • 1 pinch of salt
Topping
  • 40 g of confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 scraped out vanilla pods
Method
  1. The day before baking: Scrape out the vanilla beans and store the pulp in an airtight container. Place the scraped out vanilla pods in a jar and fill up with 40 g of confectioners’ sugar. Close tightly with a lid and let it infuse overnight.

  2. The next day: Roast the ground almonds (almond flour) in a large non-stick pan over medium heat until golden, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking to the pan. Turn off the heat and let cool down completely.

  3. In a large mixing bowl combine butter, confectioners’ sugar, egg yolk, vanilla pulp, flour, the roasted almonds, and salt. Knead with your hand until it comes together and forms a smooth dough. Shape the dough into a ball, cover it in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for 2 hours.

  4. Preheat the oven to 180°C / 355°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  5. Take the dough out of the refrigerator and dive into 4 – 5 smaller portions. Take a portion and roll it into a pencil-thick rope. Cut the rope into 3-inch pieces and form each piece into a crescent. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheet. Bake on the middle rack, for 10 minutes.

  6. Let take baked cookies rest on the baking sheet for 2 – 3 minutes. Take the warm cookies from the baking sheet and carefully coat them in the vanilla-infused confectioners’ sugar. Place the coated cookies on a wire rack to finish cooling. Repeat with the remaining dough.

  7. Store in an airtight container.

Zimtsterne

Cinnamon Stars (Zimtsterne)

  • Servings: about 30 cookies
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 300 g of confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tsp of lemon juice
  • 400 g of whole ground almonds (natural almond flour)
  • the lemon zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tbsp of cinnamon
  • 1 pinch of ground cloves
Method
  1. Sieve the confectioners’ sugar. In a large mixing bowl whip the egg whites, with a pinch of salt until soft peaks form. Gradually add the sieved confectioners’ sugar. Take about 5 – 6 tablespoons of the whipped egg whites and set aside for brushing the cookies. Add cinnamon and ground almonds to the remaining egg whites. Knead with your hand until it comes together.

  2. Preheat the oven to 150°C / 305°F. Line a baking sheet with baking parchment.

  3. Roll out the dough on a clean workspace, dusted with confectioners’ sugar. Cut out little stars and place them on the prepared baking sheet. Brush each cookie with the set aside whipped egg whites.

  4. Bake on a middle rack for about 15 minutes.

  5. Pull the cookies with the baking parchment onto a cooling rack and let cool down.

  6. Store in an airtight container.

lemon hearts
Lemon Hearts

Lemon Hearts

  • Servings: about 90 cookies
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients
Dough
  • 250 g of plain, all-purpose flour
  • 1 pinch of baking powder
  • 100 g of confectioners’ sugar, sieved
  • the zest of 1 lemon
  • 150 g of butter, at room temperature
  • 1 egg white
Icing
  • 150 g of confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 – 3 tbsps of lemon juice
Method
  1. Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix with a hand mixer, fitted with beaters, until it comes together.

  2. Transfer the dough onto a flour-dusted workspace and knead with your hand until a smooth and soft dough forms. Form the dough into a thick log, wrap it in plastic food wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.

  3. Preheat the oven to 180°C / 355°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  4. Take the dough out of the refrigerator and divide it into 3 parts. Take one portion and roll it out on a flour-dusted workspace. Cut out heart shapes and place on the prepared baking sheet.  Bake on the middle rack for 10 minutes.

  5. Pull the cookies with the parchment paper from the baking sheet onto a cooling rack and allow it to cool down. Repeat with the remaining dough.

  6. Stir together confectioners’ sugar with only so much lemon juice that a thick, creamy icing develops. Spread icing over the cookies and let it set before storing in an airtight container.

 

 

 

 

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