Cherry and Almond Flower Cookies

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Cardamom is one of my favorite spices, especially for sweet preparation; but in curries as well this is really amazing!

These cookies are very easy to be prepared, you can use cinnamon instead of cardamom if you prefer or if you have only this on hand. These cookies are perfect to be prepared with children as they may decorate as they love. You may also make more glaze, add food coloring, and let them play.

A good basic recipe perfect to be adapted!

Cherry and Almond Flower Cookies

  • Difficulty: easy
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

You need cherry-and-almond-flower-cookies-1

Dough

  • 250 g butter or margarine
  • 150 g brown sugar
  • 150 g caster sugar
  • 10 green cardamom, only grinded seeds (or 1/2-1 teaspoon cardamom ground)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 250 g almonds ground
  • 360-400 g all-purpose flour ( about 400 g flour if using margarine)

Topping

  • about 100 g bleached almonds halved or slivered
  • about 50 g candied cherries, halved
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk

Procedure

  1. With the food processor work butter, sugars, cardamom, eggs, salt and almonds ground.
  2. Add flour in portions until you get a smooth and not too sticky dough.
  3. Place the dough on a foil, form a rectangle, wrap it and let it rest in the fridge for about one hour.
  4. Place the dough on a well-floured surface. Dust with flour and roll out to a thickness of about 6 mm. Cut out with a “clover” shaped cookies cutter of about 5 cm.
  5. Place the pieces on a tray with parchment foil. Assemble the remaining dough and cut out again. Repeat until you finish the dough.
  6. Decorate pressing the candied cherries and the almonds on the clovers.
  7. Make a glaze with the powdered sugar and drizzle to decorate.

Ww 4 smart points per cookie (calculated as 60 cookies in total)

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Chocolate and Mint Cookies

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I prepared this recipe before making the cookies and I was not sure if the proportions would work as I wanted to prepare this with margarine instead of butter. For this reason I used only 160 g margarine (instead of 175 butter) and I proceeded. As wanted to get a dough which I would be able to shape I found that quantity of margarine perfect. I got a soft dough, not sticky, which I could easily roll to a cylinder and slice this then quickly.

Depending on your margarine (or butter) you probably need to adjust the quantity of flour or to add some more margarine.

For the glaze I used my homemade mint liqueur but you may use any mint liqueur or other liquid as for example milk.

I don’t have mint extract at home, for this reason I grinded with my spice mill a good quantity of Fisherman’s Friend menthol lozenges and I keep the powder tightly closed in a jar.

If you have more time I suggest to cut our Christmas trees and after glazing and drizzling I would drop some sugar pearls. Have fun!

Chocolate and Mint Cookies

  • Difficulty: easy
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/ chocolate-and-mint-cookies-3

You need

Cookies

  • 160 g margarine, just out of the fridge
  • 120 g sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract or some about 1 teaspoon milled Fisherman’s menthol lozenges (optional)
  • 200 g flour

Glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons mint liqueur (or milk); see also my “Crème De Menthe” recipe
  • 1 ml peppermint extract or 4 teaspoon milled Fisherman’s Friend menthol lozenges
  • 1 -2 drop green food coloring (optional)

Drizzle

  • 60 g cooking dark chocolate, melted

Procedure

  1. In the food processor work margarine, sugar and cacao powder until smooth
  2. Add mint and flour. Work until all is very smooth and not sticky, if necessary add more flour or margarine
  3. Roll half of the dough on your working space into a log of diameter of 3 cm. With a sharp knife make slices of 5 mm and transfer this on your baking tray provided or baking paper. Make the same with the second portion. For this I needed almost 2 baking trays.
  4. Bake at 170°C for 6-8 minutes. Cool down.
  5. Prepare you glaze adding the liquid slowly and only so much until you get the consistence you like.
  6. Use a brush to glaze the cookies.
  7. Place your chocolate into a small plastic bag, close tightly and melt it into warm/hot water. Then cut and angle and drizzle the cookies. Place
  8. When the cookies are cooled down, melt the chocolate and drizzle the cookies.

Ww 2 smart points per cookie (calculated as 80 cookies in total)

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Edelweiss Cookies

edelweiss-cookies-13What kind I sweets will we enjoy this year? Well we have some favorites, but we love to try new one and if possible to create completely new ones!

As I know that in my family Christmas cookies are not only for the mouth since for the eyes and the in general Christmas decoration and for small gifts, I try to create pretty ones, even if they take some time to be ready.

Edelweiss flowers are Switzerland’s national flowers, they are white, look like small stars, and are incredible beautiful … these will be my most beautiful cookies this year.

The recipe was based on orange cookies, I adapted the recipe quite a lot and I added a glaze which will enhance the orange flavor and taste. At the end I got very good not only beautiful cookies!

I made the double quantity (for a total of 6 baking trays, 200 cookies!) and including the decoration I spent good 4 hours.

Edelweiss Cookies

  • Difficulty: medium
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

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You need

Cookies

  • 125 g butter
  • 100 g sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 250 g flour
  • 2 tablespoons candied orange, very finely chopped
  • 1 orange, grated zest and juice

Decoration

  • 1 cup powdered sugar¨
  • 2 tablespoons orange liqueur, quantity to be adjusted
  • sugar pearls

Procedure

  1. Mix butter, sugar, egg and salt until very well combined.
  2. Add flour, candied orange, orange zest and half of the orange juice.
  3. Pulse and add as much of the remaining orange juice until you get a smooth but not too wet dough.
  4. Form a rectangle, dust with flour and place in the fridge to chill.
  5. Dust your working place and with flour, dust the dough as well and roll out to a thickness of about 4 mm.
  6. Preheat the oven to 170°C
  7. Dust the dough again and cut out you cookies using cookies cutters in shape gerbera flowers (search under: Plunger Cutters, Veined Sunflower Daisy). Assemble the cut outs, bring quickly together, dust with flour, roll out and chill outside (it’s winter now) for 5 minutes before cutting the next ones. Continue until you finish your dough.
  8. Transfer the cookies onto the prepared baking tray with parchment. Remember: as soon as the first try is ready you can begin to bake while you are cutting out the next ones. This quantity of dough makes about 100 cookies and you will need 3 trays!
  9. Bake in at 170°C for about 10 minutes, when the borders begin to change color.
  10. Remove from the oven and cool down on a grid.
  11. In the meantime combine powdered sugar. Add as much liqueur until you get a thick but still enough liquid paste.
  12. Using a squeeze bottle paint the cookies with white.
  13. When they are dry make some dots with glaze and dip the cookies into the pearls.
  14. When they are dry fish with some additional dots.

Ww 4 smart points per cookie (calculated as 100 cookies in total)

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Tea Flavored Christmas Tree Cookies

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Every year I prepare a few kind of Christmas cookies and every year I love to try different ones and different shapes. There are a few shapes I love very much: stars, angels, snow flakes and Christmas tree. Today I will give you the description of my newest Christmas trees: the basic recipe is a traditional basic recipe based on the addition of milk. In this way the cookies are less fat, but the taste is great, thanks the addition of flavored tea bags. If you don’t have tea, you can simply reduce the quantity of milk to 100 ml and add some vanilla, cinnamon, cardamom or what you like most.

Tea Flavored Christmas Tree Cookies

  • Servings: about 50 pieces
  • Difficulty: easy
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

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Ingredients:

Cookies:

  • 140 ml milk
  • 4 envelopes Ginger Lemon Tee, or other tea of choice (should not be sour as the milk would separate)
  • 350 g flour
  • 150 g sugar
  • 100 g butter
  • 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 pinch salt

Green Glaze:

  • 150 g powdered sugar
  • 3-4 teaspoons milk or water or brandy
  • A few drops food coloring
  • 1 pinch citric acid, optional
  • Pearl sugar, optional

 

Procedure:

  1. Bring the milk to boil, remove from fire, add tea envelopes and let soak for about 15 minutes.
  2. Remove tea envelope pressing out all the milk.
  3. In a big bowl combine flour, sugar, butter, baking powder, salt and the aromatized milk.
  4. Knead well until smooth, wrap in foil and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  5. Give a short knead again roll out over a well flour surface. Required thickness about 3 mm.
  6. Cut out the using the Christmas tree shape and transfer to y baking tray prepared with parchment foil. If you don’t have this shape you can cut out simple triangles.
  7. Bake at 170°C for about 10-12 minutes or until you see that the borders begins to turn light brown. Let cool down on a grid.
  8. Place the powdered sugar in a medium bowl and slowly stir in the liquid, a little at a time, to make a smooth, pourable glaze.
  9. Reserve 4 tablespoons glaze mix in the citric acid (will make the glaze more white) if you wish white decoration for the Christmas trees and place it in a small piping bag or use pearl sugar for a quicker version.
  10. Glaze the cookies with a cooking brush or add 1 tablespoon more liquid and dip one of the surface of the cookies, let drop down the excess and remove the excess with a spoon or a knife. I used the dipping method.
  11. If you use peal sugar, sprinkle immediately. If you prefer the white painting let dry the green coat and paint the cooking using the pipetting bag.

Cranberry and Orange Swirls

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Looking for easy Christmas cookies I came across several recipes of cranberry swirls made by hand and using fresh cranberries.

I tried to adapt the recipes using dried cranberries and making the work easier using the food processor in order to make the preparation easy and quick. The refrigerating time is necessary to set the dough, please don’t skip this!

The sweet tangy taste of these cookies combined with the orange aroma makes from these a great Christmas gift thread!

Variation: if you like you can try to add a pinch of ground spices as cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, star anise and cardamom! I think next time I will try with a pinch of star anise!

Cranberry and Orange Swirls

  • Servings: about 40 pieces
  • Difficulty: easy
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/Cranberry-and-Orange-Swirls

 

Ingredients:

  • 100 g butter
  • 150 g sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 220 g flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder, sifted
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 150 g dried cranberries
  • 50 g candied orange
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest, optional for more taste
  • 3 tablespoons honey or maple syrup
  • About 3 tablespoons milk
  • Glitters, optional (pink or red are very nice for this cookies)

Procedure:

  1. Work with the food processor butter, sugar, egg and vanilla until soft and fluffy.
  2. Add flour, baking powder and salt and work until well combined.
  3. Flatten the dough to a rectangle of about 10 to 15 cm, wrap in foil and refrigerate for one hour.
  4. Place cranberried, candied orange and orange zest in the food process and pulse until finely chopped.
  5. Add honey and the first tablespoon milk. Pulse until combined. Add gradually milk until you see that you could spread the mixture with a spatula. Should not be running!
  6. Dust your surface with flour, place the dough over this and dust the dough as well. Roll out to the size of 40 to 25 cm.
  7. Spread the fruit mixture over this, but let 3 cm of the long border free.
  8. Roll up tightly and carefully from the long side to form a roll.
  9. Wrap the roll and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or better overnight,
  10. Remove the foil and roll the roll over colored glitters.
  11. Preheat the oven to 175°C.
  12. Cut into 5 mm thick slices (mine were 5 wide) and place over two prepared baking trays prepared with parchment foil. Between each piece you will need about 3 cm space as they will spread out.
  13. Bake for about 15 minutes or just until you see that the edges begins to turn light brown. Mines resulted 6 cm wide.
  14. Let cool down completely on a wire rack before storing them in tight containers!

Coconut Snow Balls

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I made these for Christmas gifts (homemade Raffaello) and I realized they “disappear” if not placed in a “safe place”. These will make cute gifts!

The preparation is easy and to assemble this you will need only to melt the chocolate with the butter and assemble the ingredients. The melted chocolate will appear oily, but don’t worry, after assembling and cooling this will fist hold together and then will set and turn harder.

I planned to prepare a snowman, to use a ball and a smaller one without almond for the head, but finally my hubby saw in this a bird and after I’ve fixed the head with a toothpick  he just placed a piece of roasted almond as beak. I found a bird much so cute that I simply used to cloves as eyes and the bird was ready!  The snow? Some additional coconut flakes were perfect for this and are edible.

Coconut Snow Balls

  • Difficulty: easy
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/ Coconut-Snow-Balls-1

You need

  • 200 g white chocolate
  • 150 g unsweetened dried coconut flakes
  • 100 g ladyfingers cookies
  • 100 g powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla sugar
  • 100 butter or margarine
  • 1 tablespoon rum
  • about 50 almonds, whole and peeled
  • 50 g unsweetened dried coconut flakes to coat

Procedure

  1. If you have almonds with skin, place them in hot water for 2 minutes and then rinse with cold water. It will be easy to remove the skin. Dry the almonds with a towel before use.
  2. I used 200 grams of white chocolate which I crumbled using the food processor; if you have white chocolate chips you will not need this step. Place the crumbled chocolate aside in a microwave safe bowl.
  3. Place coconut flakes and the broke ladyfingers cookies in the food processor. Work until finely crumbled.
  4. To the processor add powdered sugar and vanilla and work for a few seconds.
  5. Place the butter in the same bowl as the white chocolate and melt it in the microwave for about 1-2 minutes. Stir. You can also make this placing the bowl over a pot of boiling water.
  6. When the chocolate mixture is soft (it is not necessary that this is completely melted) add this to the food processor as well as the rum. Pulse until combined.
  7. Now take about 2 teaspoons mixture in your hand, press inside the almond and press it all together forming a ball of about 2 1/2 cm (1 inch) wide.
  8. Coat immediately in the reserved coconut flakes and place on a tray. Continue until all the mixture is used.
  9. Place the tray in the fridge or outside (if winter) until set.

 

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Aniskrabeli and Anisbroetli (Swiss Cookies with Anise)

Aniskrabeli and Anisbroetli - Swiss Cookies With AniseThis is one of the first traditional Swiss Christmas cookies recipes I tried out and this is an evergreen for us.

As in this recipe there is no fat addition, the dough consists of a mixture of egg, powdered sugar and flour. The resulting paste is similar to play dough your can form it, you can use mold and … this is the crucial point… the surfaces of the cookies dries while storing before baking. If you roll out the dough and dust it with flour, you can stamps for fancy cookies.

The traditional stamps are made on wood and carved by hand, really pieces of art.

I only plastic ones, but once as I saw some beautiful tiles with fantastic old reliefs in the house of a friend I asked her to take the pattern. For this purpose I used as soft smooth clay, that after drying I burnt in order to have the pattern.

I rolled out the dough, dusted the surface with flour and made my big cookies with the new old fashioned mold. WOW! With clay it works really well.

If you don’t have stamps you can make the traditional “Krabeli”.

During drying time the surface gets hard and while baking the cookies will expand from the bottom. If the surface is dry enough the pattern will stay intact while baking.

Usually the cookies had to be dried overnight, but today with our heating systems the higher temperatures and dry air condition can shorten the baking time. You have to check first if the surface is dry enough and eventually bake some test pieces.

Enjoy these medieval cookies!

You need

  • 4 eggs
  • 500 g powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Kirsch
  • 1 tablespoon anise (for Aniskrabeli you can use whole seeds and for Anisbroetli depending on the pattern anise ground may be better)
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 600 g plain flour

Procedure

  1. Beat powerded sugar and eggs using a blender until very fluffy and pale.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and knead into dough.
  3. For Aniskrabeli form on a floured surface rolls 1.5 cm (½ inch) thick. Cut pieces of 4-5 centimeters (2 inch) of length. Make 3 oblique cuts and fold your cookies slightly (like in the picture).
  4. For Anisbroetli you need a stamp. In this case roll out your dough about 8 cm thick (1/3 inch) on a floured surface, dust with flour and print them using your favorite stamp. Cut clear borders.
  5. Put the small pieces onto a baking tray and dry for about 6 – 24 hours at room temperature (this step is essential!).
  6. Bake them for 15-25 minutes with 150 degrees Celsius (300F). These cookies shouldn’t turn brown!

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