Monday, December 14, 2015

Perfect Christmas Cookies


I wanted to make soooo many kinds of cookies this Christmas, but I didn't because I'm still trying to lose weight from my last pregnancy. Maybe next year. I did get the opportunity to make these (actually, a few weeks after Christmas, but I'm posting it here because it makes more sense). These are so good. They are almost like little tarts. The cookie dough is more like a cream cheese based pie dough. The only sweetness comes from the apricot jam and the powdered sugar sprinkled on top, but they are just right.


Apricot Kolaches


8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, sifted; plus more for rolling
1 jar (12 oz.) good-quality apricot preserves (about 3/4 cup)
1 large egg, beaten
Confectioner's sugar, for dusting


Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and butter on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. With mixer on low, gradually mix in flour until a smooth dough forms. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently form a ball. Divide the dough into thirds, wrap each in plastic wrap and flatten into squares. Refrigerate at least 4 hours.

Heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line 3 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Remove 1 piece of dough from the refrigerator and roll it out on a lightly floured surface into 1n 1/8-inch thick rectangle. Using a sharp knife or pizza cutter, trim the rough edges of the dough so the sides are straight, and then cut into 2-inch squares. Spoon about 1/2 teaspoon of the preserves onto the center of each square. Fold one corner into the center, dab with the beaten egg, and then bring the opposite corner into the center and pinch firmly together to seal the corners. With a thin spatula, transfer the cookie to the prepared cookie sheet. Repeat the process with the remaining dough.

Bake one sheet at a time until golden and very lightly browned and puffed, 10-12 minutes. Transfer to a rack to col completely and then dust with confectioner's sugar. Store in an airtight container.

Recipe Notes: Prep time: 45 minutes, Bake time: 10-12 minutes, Total time: 57 minutes, plus 4 hours refrigeration time, Makes: about 4 dozen.

Source: I had seen nearly identical recipes in a bunch of my cookie cookbooks, but the one I ended up using was from the Holiday 2015 Smith's MyMagazine mailer. I can't seem to find it online. This recipe was submitted by a shopper called Craig L. and it is a recipe that his mother, Rose, used to make.

Notes: I might try this without refrigerating the dough next time. After refrigeration, the dough was almost impossible for me to roll out, so I let it come back to room temperature before rolling and it worked out fine. These were really delicious. They would make a very pretty addition to any holiday cookie plate. Good stuff!

Above: Fresh out of the oven and before sprinkling with powdered sugar. Be sure to pinch the corners shut really well when you apply the beaten egg, otherwise the sides will flip open during baking (see the very top row?). Sadly, I had to eat the "ugly" cookies since they weren't pretty enough to present to anyone. ;)


Above: Separate each layer of cookies with a sheet of waxed paper (parchment paper would work too) when storing or transporting.

1 comment:

  1. You are so precise in your cooking. Mine would never look this pretty. Yum.