Monday, December 22, 2014

Snowball Cookies

Snowball Cookies are probably my favorite homemade Christmas cookie.  I double the ingredients this year so I'd have some leftovers after I package our gifts for the neighbors. No amount of exercise could possible compensate for the number of Snowball Cookies I have consumed!

I've tried a few online recipes over the years.  Here is my version:

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature 
1 ½ cups powdered sugar 
2 teaspoons vanilla extract 
¼ teaspoons salt
2 cups all purpose flour 
½ cup ground slivered almonds
¼ cup ground pecans
¼ cup ground walnuts
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

1.  Preheat oven to 350°F.
2.  Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until light and fluffy. 
3.  Add ½ cup powdered sugar and vanilla; beat until well blended. 
4.  Beat in flour, salt.  Grind nuts in a food processor then add to mixture. 

5.  Divide dough in half; form each half into ball. Wrap separately in plastic and refrigerate until cold, about 30 minutes, until the dough is chilled but not hard and is no longer sticky to the touch.
6.  Whisk remaining 1 cup powdered sugar and cinnamon in pie dish to blend. Set cinnamon sugar aside. 
7.  Working with half of chilled dough, roll dough by 1 tablespoonfuls between palms into balls. 
8.  Arrange balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet, spacing ½ inch apart. 
9.  Bake cookies until golden brown on bottom and just pale golden on top, about 10 minutes. 
10.  Cool cookies 5 minutes on baking sheet. 
11.  Gently toss warm cookies in cinnamon sugar to coat completely. 

12.  Transfer coated cookies to rack and cool completely. 
13.  Repeat procedure with remaining half of dough. (Cookies can be prepared 2 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature; reserve remaining cinnamon sugar.) 

14.  Sift remaining cinnamon sugar over cookies and serve.

Yield: 2 dozen cookies

The Snowball Cookies completed the Treat Trio that I gave our neighbors!  I arranged the cookies on a rectangular holiday plate with a doily. Then I wrapped them in clear cellophane and tied them with red tulle.

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