Saturday, December 22, 2007

O, Spritz-mas Tree!

Growing up in my family, Christmas couldn't come without 8-10 different kinds of Christmas cookies being made in the days leading up to Christmas. We would all work to make them, rolling out, icing, decorating, mixing, "spritzing" them (as we called using the cookie press). There are several recipes that are required every year, and then we always tried some new ones or some that we hadn't had in a long time.
One of the cookies that is and was an absolute must is the Spritz. We always color ours green and make trees, wreaths, and stars. We decorate them with red hots and sprinkles and colored sugar. And we eat them three at a time. (Gulp.) They're little, ok? Spritz are great because one batch makes a lot, they look so festive, and who doesn't love a butter cookie? I made a batch earlier this week when my cousin Bec and her husband were visiting for the day, and sent a tinful to the preschool Christmas party. So now I may need to make some more before Christmas!
Today is going to be spent mostly in the kitchen, baking cookies and making candy. I have turned into a candy maker in the past 8 years or so, and love to make fudge, toffee, peanut brittle, and caramel for Christmas. Come to think of it, I'd better hit the gym this morning before I start in the kitchen! See ya!
Note: You need a cookie press to make these delectable Christmas cookies. So go get one!
  • 1 1/2 cups butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp. almond extract
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
Beat butter with an electric mixer for 30 seconds. Add sugar and baking powder and mix until well combined. Beat in egg, vanilla, and almond extract. Beat in as much flour as you can--stir remaining flour if your mixer can't take it!
Force UNCHILLED dough through a cookie press onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Decorate with colored sugars, red hots, and/or sprinkles. Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes, until cookies are almost browning on the edges. (You'll have to bake a few batches before you know what that looks like. Sorry. The good news is that even if they are a little brown or even downright burned, these still taste great. You just can't give them away to your friends.) Keep them in a Christmasy cookie tin like we do, or in an airtight container.


Anonymous said...

The cookies look yummy! I bet gingerbread houses would be fun also.(Hint)


Morgan said...

Those looks great! I haven't used my cookie press in ages! It's time to dust that thing off and have a cookie extravaganza.

Merry Christmas!!