Cookies

Great fodder for your "Cookie Monster"!


The key to making great cookies is the temperature of the butter.  All cookies recipes say the butter should be softened or at room temperature.  However, if the butter becomes too warm, the cookies will spread too wide and thin.  Room temperature is sometimes too warm, especially in a small kitchen with the oven going.  Softened means if you can slightly dent the butter when squeezed.  If the butter becomes much softer than that, the temperature has risen too much.  Once the temperature reaches a certain point, there is no going back--the butter starts to separate and even re-chilling it will not work.  Do not use a microwave to soften the butter.  It will always be too warm.

In addition, If you want thinner crispier cookies, use all butter.  If you want thicker, more chewy cookies use 1/2 butter and 1/2 shortening.


Recipe Index
Feel free to browse the entire page of recipes or use these links to jump to a specific one.

Acorn Cookies

Almond Crescents

Apricot Spice And Almond Doodles

Anise Pillows

Banana Pecan Ginger Cookies

Candied Fruit Cookies

Cardamom Walnut Cookies  

Cashew Snowballs

Cherry Almond Oatmeal Cookies

Cherry, Cashew And White Chocolate Cookies

Cherry Pistachio Chocolate Chip

Choco-Pistachio Meringues

Choco-Nut Clouds

Chocolate Chip Cookies With Espresso And Cinnamon  

Chocolate Chunk, Orange And Hazelnut Cookies

Chocolate Chunk Cookies With Pecans, Dried Apricots And Tart Cherries

Chocolate Ginger Crackles

Chocolate Espresso Cookies  

Chocolate Press Cookies  

Christmas Rocks

Cinnamon Pecans

Cream Cheese Spritz

Cranberry And Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cream Cheese Spritz

Date Nut Orange Oatmeal Cookies

Death By White Chocolate Cookies

Double Chocolate Treasures

Double Peanut Double Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ginger Almond Cookies

Ginger Maple Macadamia Cookies (Tom's 2014 Taste of Home 1st Prize winner)

Ginger-Pecan Snowballs  

Ginger Shortbread Cookies

Hazelnut Oatmeal Cookies

Hazelnut Sandies

Hazelnut Sandwich Cookies

Holiday Oatmeal M&M Cookies

Lemon Coconut Cookies

Lemon Lavender Shortbread

Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies

Lemon Rosemary Christmas Trees 

Nutty Date Squares

Oatmeal Date Cookies

Oatmeal Icebox Cookies

Orange Pistachio Bells

Orange Shortbread Cookies With Chocolate Chips

Peanut Butter Cookies With Chocolate Chunks

Peanut Coconut Cookies

Pecan Sandwich Cookies

Pfeffernusse

Pistachio And Dried Cherry Biscotti  

Pistachio Cranberry Mexican Wedding Cakes

Poinsettia Cookies

Potato Chip Cookies

Pretzel, Peanut And Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Puff Pastry Pinwheels With Candied Fruit

Pumpkin Almond Chocolate Chip Cookies

Russian Tea Cakes (Bullets)

Spicy Raisin Carrot Oatmeal Cookies

Super Chunk Jumbles

Surprise Snowballs

Tiny English Fruitcakes

Triple Chocolate Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies

Triple Chocolate Double Nut Cookies  

Tropical Jumbles

White Chocolate and Macadamia Nut Cookies

White Chocolate, Cranberry and Macadamia Nut Cookies

White Chocolate, Pumpkin and Macadamia Nut Cookies

Windmill Cookies 


DOUBLE CHOCOLATE TREASURES
Makes about 5 dozen

One 12 oz. pkg. (2 cups) semisweet chocolate pieces
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups rolled oats uncooked
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons. baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup powdered sugar

Heat oven to 350.   In heavy saucepan over low heat, melt 1 cup chocolate pieces. Stir until smooth; cool
slightly. Beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Blend in eggs, vanilla and melted chocolate. Add combined dry ingredients except powdered sugar; stir in remaining chocolate pieces. Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll in powdered sugar coating heavily. Place on ungreased cookie sheet; bake I0 to 12 minutes. Cool I minute on cookie sheet; remove to wire rack. Store in airtight container.

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GINGER-ALMOND COOKIES
About 7 dozen cookies

1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups butter
3/4 cup molasses
4 cups Gold Medal all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon ground ginger plus 1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground cloves
1 1/2 cups finely chopped almonds

Mix sugar, shortening and molasses in large bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients except almonds.  Stir in
almonds.  Divide dough in half.  Shape each half into roll, about 2 inches in diameter Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 3 hours.  Heat oven to 350F.  Cut rolls into 1/4-inch slices. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake about 9 minutes or until almost no indentation remains when touched. Cool 2 minutes before removing from cookie sheet. 

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HAZELNUT OATMEAL COOKIES
Makes About 3 Dozen

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup packed golden brown sugar
1 egg
1 tablespoon grated orange peel
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups old-fashioned oats
3/4 cup chopped toasted hazelnuts
1/2 cup dried currants

Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter 2 cookie sheets. Using electric mixer, beat butter and sugar in large bowl
until fluffy. Beat in egg, orange peel and vanilla. Mix flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in medium
bowl. Add to butter mixture; mix well. Mix in oats, nuts and currants.  Scoop dough by rounded tablespoons full; form into 1 1/2 inch balls and place on prepared sheets; spacing balls 2 inches apart.  Bake until golden about 10-13 minutes.  Transfer cookies to racks to cool.  Store in air tight containers.

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ACORN COOKIES
Makes about 9 dozen

1 cup sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon almond extract
l egg
3 1/2 cups Gold Medal all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 package (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
2 cups finely chopped nuts

Mix sugar, butter, milk, vanilla, almond extract and egg in large bowl.  Stir in flour, baking powder and
salt.  Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours.  Heat oven to 375F.  For each cookie, shape 1 tablespoon
dough into 2-inch oval.  Taper one end by pinching dough.  Place 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake 9 to 12 minutes or until set.  Immediately remove from cookie sheet; cool. Heat chocolate chips until melted. Dip about 1/3 of the wide, rounded end of each cookie into chocolate, then dip into nuts.  About 9 dozen cookies.

Acorn Cutouts: Prepare and refrigerate dough as directed. Roll dough 1/4 inch thick on lightly floured cloth-covered surface. Cut with acorn cookie cutter and Bake about 7-9 minutes.  Once cooled, dip top part of cookie in chocolate and nuts as above.

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HAZELNUT SANDWICH COOKIES
Makes about 24

Crisp, nutty cookies sandwiched with melted semisweet chocolate. They can be frozen one month ahead in an
airtight container. Bring to room temperature before serving. 

3/4 cup(1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
11/2 cups all purpose flour
11/2 cups ground husked toasted hazelnuts (about 3 3/4
ounces)
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
Pinch of salt
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped

Preheat oven to 350F. Line baking sheets with parchment.  Using electric mixer, cream butter with sugar in large bowl until light and fluffy.  Add flour, nuts, vanilla and salt and stir just until dough comes together. Gather dough into ball. Divide in half. Flatten each half into disc.  Wrap in plastic. Refrigerate until firm. Roll 1 piece of dough out between sheets of waxed paper to thickness of 1/8 inch. Cut into boat shapes using  3-inch-long barquette tartlet mold or cut into rounds using 3-inch cutter. Transfer cookies to prepared sheets. Repeat with second dough piece. Bake until light golden, about 10 minutes. Cool cookies completely on sheet. Line another baking sheet with waxed paper. Melt chocolate in top of double boiler over hot water, stirring frequently until smooth. Spread flat side of 1 cookie with thin coating of chocolate. Sandwich with flat side of second cookie. Transfer to prepared sheet. Repeat with remaining cookies and chocolate.  Dip fork in remaining chocolate and drizzle lines over each cookie
in decorative pattern. Let stand at cool room temperature until chocolate sets. (Can be prepared 2 days ahead. Layer with waxed paper and store at room, temperature in airtight container.) Arrange cookies on platter before serving.

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1 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup old-fashioned chunky peanut butter (about 9 ounces)
1 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup honey
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (or
chunks or large morsels)

Mix flour, oats, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat peanut butter, brown sugar, butter, honey, egg and vanilla in large bowl until well blended. Stir dry ingredients into peanut butter mixture in 2 additions. Stir in chopped chocolate. Cover and refrigerate until dough is firm and no longer sticky, about 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350F. Butter 2 heavy large baking sheets. With hands, roll heaping tablespoonful of dough for each cookie into 1 3/4-inch-diameter ball. Arrange cookies on prepared baking sheets, spacing 2 1/2 inches apart. Bake cookies until puffed, beginning to brown on top and still very soft to touch, about 12 minutes. Cool cookies on baking sheets 5 minutes. Using metal spatula, transfer cookies to rack and cool completely. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Store in airtight container at room temperature.)

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PFEFFERNUSSE
Makes
60 To 65 Cookies

2 large eggs
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
3 ounces candied orange  or lemon peel
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup ground blanched almonds
Grated zest of 1 lemon
Sifted confectioners sugar

Place the eggs and sugars in the bowl of a heavy-duty electric mixer and beat with the beater attachment at medium speed for 10 minutes.  Meanwhile, place the candled peel and 1 tablespoon of the flour in a small food processor and chop fine, or chop the peel by hand. Set aside. Combine the remaining flour, the baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, pepper, almonds, and lemon zest on a piece of wax paper. After the egg mixture has been beaten for 10 minutes, gradually add the flour mixture and beat until well mixed. Add the candled peel and continue beating until the dough cleans the side of the bowl and forms a ball.  Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or butter them.  Form the dough into 1 inch balls and place them 1 inch apart on the cookie sheets. Let the balls of dough ripen overnight at room temperature.  Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake the Pfeffernusse in the middle of the oven for 15 minutes, or until deep cracks have formed in the tops. Roll the cookies in confectioners sugar while they are still hot, then cool thoroughly on racks.  Store in airtight containers at room temperature for up to 4 weeks.

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2 sticks (1.cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sifted confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup poppy seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt

Cream the butter in a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer.  Add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy.  Beat in the vanilla, then add the poppy seeds, lemon zest, flour, and salt and stir until the dough is very well mixed.  Turn the dough out on a work surface and form into 2 or 3 rough logs, about 1
1/2 to 1 3/4 inches in diameter. Wrap the logs in wax paper and refrigerate for 30 minutes, or until firm
enough to shape into smooth, even rolls.  Rewrap the rolls in wax paper and refrigerate for another hour or two, or put into heavy plastic bags and freeze.  Preheat the oven to 375 F. Remove the rolls from the refrigerator one at a time, place on a cutting board, and cut into slices just under 1/4 inch thick. Arrange the slices on ungreased cookie sheets about 1 inch apart and bake in the middle of the oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or just until the edges turn golden.  Transfer the cookies to racks to cool.  Store at room temperature for 1 week in an airtight container and up to 2 months in the freezer.

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CINNAMON PECANS
Makes about 3 1/2 cups

1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg white
3 cups pecan halves

Preheat oven to 325F.  Combine sugar, cinnamon and salt in small bowl.  Whisk egg white in large bowl
until frothy. Add pecans to egg white and toss to coat.  Add sugar mixture and toss thoroughly.  Spread pecans in a single layer on heavy large cookie sheets. Bake until toasted and crisp, about 20 minutes. Using spatula, immediately loosen pecans from cookie sheets. Cool.  (Can be prepared 2 weeks ahead.  Store in airtight container.)

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1/4 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 cup chopped dates
1/ cup nuts
1 2/3 cups Bisquick
powder sugar for rolling

Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease and flour a 9-inch square pan.  Mix the butter, sugar and egg. Stir in the Bisquick, dates and nuts.  Spread in the pan.  Mound a bit higher on the edges for even cooking. Dough is very heavy.  Mound dough heavier on the sides in the middle to ensure ends do not  over-bake or  burn.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.  Do not over bake--it will look undone. Cool and cut in small squares.  Roll squares in powder sugar.

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ANISE PILLOWS
Makes about 4 dozen
 

6 eggs
3 1/2 cups flour sifted
1 pound powder sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
6 drops anise oil or 2 teaspoons anise extract

Sift flour and baking powder together. Beat eggs until light, beat in the sugar.  Add anise oil and flour mixture. Drop teaspoons full on a greased cookie sheet that has no sides.  Let it stand overnight before baking.  Bake at 350 for about 7 or 8 minutes.  Cool on wire racks

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TINY ENGLISH FRUITCAKES
Makes 6 dozen tea size fruitcakes

1 cup soft butter
1 pound light brown sugar
4 eggs
3 cups sifted flour
1 teaspoon baking Powder
1 cup champagne or dry white wine
1 pound raisins
1 cup diced citron
1 cup candied cherries (red and green)
1 cup diced candled pineapple
1 cup diced candied lemon peel
2 cups walnuts, chopped

In a large bowl cream butter and beat in sugar. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Stir in flour mixed with baking powder alternately with wine. Fold in fruits and nuts. Spoon mixture into tea size muffin pans with paper muffin insert (otherwise grease and flour) filling cups only to the rim. Bake at300F for 35 to 40 minutes or until richly browned and firm to the touch. Do not overcook-may not look really done. Cool on racks. (Wrap cakes in a piece of cheesecloth dampened with more champagne--optional) Store in an airtight container in a cool dry place. or freeze.

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Because they contain so little flour, these have a chewy, brownie-like texture.

6 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup(1 stick) unsalted butter
2 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons instant espresso powder
2 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350F. Mix flour, baking powder and salt in small bowl. Stir chocolate and butter in heavy large saucepan over low heat until melted. Remove from heat. Using electric mixer, beat eggs, sugar, espresso powder and vanilla in medium bowl until well blended. Stir egg mixture into warm chocolate mixture. Stir in dry ingredients. Stir in chocolate chips and chopped walnuts. Immediately drop dough by heaping tablespoonfuls onto nonstick baking sheets, (or sheets covered with parchment) spacing 1 1/2 inches apart. Bake until tops crack but cookies are still soft inside, about 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer baking sheets to racks; cool 5 minutes. Transfer cookies to racks; cool completely. (Store cookies in airtight container at room temperature.)

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CANDIED FRUIT COOKIES
Makes about 5 dozen cookies

1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1 egg
2 1/4 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup candled whole cherries
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup chopped mixed candied fruit and peels

Mix powdered sugar, butter and egg in large bowl. Stir in flour and cream of tartar. Stir in remaining ingredients. Divide dough in half. Shape each half into roll, 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours until chilled. Heat oven to 375F. Cut rolls into 1/8-inch slices. Place 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake about 8 minutes or until set. Immediately remove from cookie sheet and cool on racks. (Dough can be frozen for up to 6 weeks. Thaw before slicing.)

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ORANGE PISTACHIO BELLS
Makes about 50 cookies

3/4 cup pistachios, shelled and either unsalted
or salt soaked off and dried
1 3/4 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
8 tablespoons unsalted butter(1 stick), at
room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon orange zest
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon orange juice
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup apricot preserves, melted and strained

Combine flour, salt and soda. Beat butter, sugar and orange zest until light and fluffy. Beat in yolk, orange juice and vanilla. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Divide in half, wrap and chill until firm, about 1 hour. Heat oven to 350F. Roll each piece of dough between sheets of lightly floured waxed paper to about 3/16-inches thick. Stamp out cookies with a bell cookie cutter. Put on ungreased baking sheets. Bake until edges are golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from pans and cool on wire racks. Brush some of the melted jam on the bottom edge of each cookie and sprinkle with pistachios.

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1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup chunky or creamy peanut butter
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup (6 ounces) peanut-butter chips

Reheat oven to 350F. In a bowl whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and baking powder. In an
other bowl with an electric mixer cream butter, peanut butter, and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in flour mixture and stir in chocolate chips and peanut-butter chips. Drop dough by level tablespoons 2 inches apart onto buttered baking sheets and bake cookies in batches in middle of oven 10 minutes. Cool cookies on racks.

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SURPRISE SNOWBALLS 
Makes about 3 dozen

3/4 cup butter
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
1 3/4 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 package (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup candied cherries quartered
2 cups finely chopped pecans or walnuts
confectioners sugar

Beat together butter, sugar, water, and extracts. Add: flour and salt, mixing well. Stir in chocolate morsels and cherries. Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll in nuts. Place on ungreased baking sheets. Bake
in 300F. oven for 30 minutes. Roll in confectioners sugar while warm.

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1 1/3 cups sifted flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup chopped peanuts
1 cup sweetened coconut flakes

Sift together dry ingredients. Stir in sugars. Add butter, egg and vanilla. Blend in peanuts and coconut. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto greased cookie sheets. Bake at 350F oven for 12 to 15 minutes.

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1 cup all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
l/8 teaspoon salt
l/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted
butter, room temperature
3/4 cup packed golden brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 1/2 cups vanilla milk (white chocolate) chips
3/4 cup coarsely chopped macadamia nuts
3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease 2 heavy large cookie sheets. Mix first 4 ingredients in small bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter, sugar and vanilla in large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in egg. Stir in dry ingredients, then vanilla milk chips and nuts. Drop cookie dough by scant 1/4 cupfuls onto prepared cookie sheets, spacing evenly. Bake until golden brown, about I5 minutes. Cool cookies on sheets 5 minutes. Transfer cookies to rack and cool.

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OATMEAL DATE COOKIES
Makes 24 cookies

1 1/4 cups packed pitted dates (about 10 ounces)
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups rolled oats

Preheat oven to 350F. Coarsely chop dates. In a 3 quart saucepan, melt butter over low heat and remove pan from heat. Add brown sugar, stirring until smooth, and sift flour, baking soda, and salt over butter mixture. In a cup lightly beat egg; and stir into flour mixture with vanilla, oats and dates until combined well. Onto 2 large ungreased baking sheets, spoon slightly round dough about 2 inches apart. Roll dough into balls with floured hands, returning to sheets. Bake cookies in upper and lower thirds of oven, switching position of sheets halfway through baking until golden brown, about 18 minutes total. Transfer cookies to rack to cool.

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WINDMILL COOKIES 
Makes about 8 dozen

1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup hot water
2 sticks (l cup) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups packed dark brown sugar
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground mace
Pinch of ground cloves
1 cup silvered almonds (4 oz)

Stir together baking soda and water until baking soda is dissolved. Beat together butter, brown sugar, and baking soda mixture with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy. Whisk together flour, salt, and spices, then mix into butter mixture until combined well. Stir in almonds. Form dough into 3 (10- by 3-inch) logs and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Freeze logs until firm, about 4 hours, or overnight. Preheat oven to 350F. Keeping remaining logs frozen, cut 1 log crosswise into slices slightly less than 1/4 inch thick and arrange slices 1 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake in middle of oven until set, 12 to 14 minutes, then transfer to racks to cool. Slice and bake remaining dough in same manner.

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CARDAMOM-WALNUT COOKIES 
Makes 48 cookies

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups walnuts, toasted, finely chopped

Mix 1 cup granulated sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cardamom in large bowl. Mix 1/2 teaspoon cardamom and powdered sugar in medium bowl. Set mixtures aside. Combine remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons cardamom, butter, vanilla extract, lemon peel and salt in another large bowl. Using electric mixer, beat at medium-high speed until well blended. Add flour and chopped nuts. Beat until dough forms, scraping the sides of the bowl occasionally. Gather dough into a ball and wrap in plastic. chill 1 hour. Preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment. Using hands and generous 1 tablespoon dough for each cookie, roll dough into 48 3/4-inch balls; transfer to baking sheets. Bake cookies until golden, about 25 minutes. Let cool 5 minutes on sheets. Add 12 warm cookies to large bowl of granulated sugar and cardamom and toss gently to coat. Repeat with 12 more cookies. Let remaining 24 cookies cool completely on sheet. Sift powdered sugar and cardamom mixture over. Can be made 3 days ahead. Store in airtight container.

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TRIPLE CHOCOLATE DOUBLE NUT COOKIES 
Makes 2 dozen cookies

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla
1 egg
l1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 oz. white chocolate, chopped
4 oz. semisweet chocolate, chopped
4 oz, milk chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Heat oven to 375F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. In large bowl, combine butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla; beat at medium speed until well blended. Add egg, beat well. In medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt; mix well. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating at low speed until combined. Add all remaining ingredients; mix well. Drop dough by rounded tablespoons about 1 1/2 inches apart onto baking sheets press lightly to flatten. Bake 9 to 11 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from baking sheets; cool on wire racks.

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LEMON-LAVENDER SHORTBREAD  
Makes about 1 1/2 dozen    

1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon dried lavender blossoms
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt

In a medium bowl, mix the sugar with the chopped lavender and grated lemon zest. Using a hand-held electric mixer, beat in the butter at moderate speed. At low speed, beat in the flour and salt until a soft dough forms. Transfer the dough to a sheet of wax paper and refrigerate for 20 minutes. Form the dough into a 4 inch log and chill for at least 45 minutes longer. Preheat the oven to 350F. Slice the shortbread dough into 1/4-inch-thick rounds and place the rounds on ungreased baking sheets. Freeze the rounds for 10 minutes. Bake the shortbread for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the edges are lightly browned. Transfer the baked shortbread to a wire rack to cool completely. (The cookie dough log can be frozen for up to 1 month. Thaw slightly before slicing. The baked shortbread can be stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days.)

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PUFF PASTRY PINWHEELS WITH CANDIED FRUIT 
Makes about 5 dozen

These cookies are best enjoyed the same day they are made.

1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Additional sugar
1 17.3-ounce package frozen puff pastry (2 sheets), thawed
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
2 cups chopped mixed candled fruit (such as glazed
  pineapple, cherries, orange peel, and sweetened dried
  cranberries)
1 egg, beaten to blend

Mix first 5 ingredients in small bowl. Sprinkle work surface generously with additional sugar. Place 1 puff pastry sheet on sugared surface. Cut sheet in half forming two 9 1/2x4 1/2-inch rectangles. Brush each rectangle generously with some of the melted butter, leaving 1-inch plain border. Sprinkle buttered part of each rectangle with 1 1/2 tablespoons spiced sugar. Scatter 1/2 cup candled fruit over spiced sugar on each. Brush border of each with egg. Starting at long side opposite glazed border, tightly roll up each rectangle, pressing firmly to seal long edges. Wrap each log separately in plastic. Repeat with remaining pastry sheet, butter, spiced sugar, candled fruit, and egg to create 2 more logs. Chill logs until firm, at least 3 hours and up to 1 day. Position 1 rack in center and second rack in top third of oven and preheat to 400F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Using serrated knife, cut 2 logs into 1/2-inch-thick rounds (keep remaining 2 logs chilled). Arrange rounds on prepared sheets, spacing 1 inch apart. Bake 12 minutes, then reverse position of sheets and bake until cookies are golden.

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CASHEW SNOWBALLS 
Makes about 6 dozen cookies    

You can substitute pecans, walnuts or macadamias for the cashews used here.

2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons (9 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, plus more for rolling
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/4 cups unsalted roasted cashews (11 ounces), finely ground in a food processor
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 375F. Line 2 large baking sheets and 2 wire racks with parchment paper. In a large bowl, using a hand-held electric mixer, beat the butter with 1/2 cup Of the confectioners' sugar at medium speed until creamy. Add the vanilla extract. At low speed, beat in the flour, roasted cashews and salt. Scrape the dough onto 4 sheets of plastic wrap and form into 1-inch logs. Wrap the logs and refrigerate until firm, at least 20 minutes. Cut the logs into 1-inch lengths and roll the lengths into balls. Arrange the balls on the baking sheets about 3/4 inch apart. Bake the cookies in the lower and upper third of the oven for 10-20 minutes, or until golden and set. Shift the baking sheets from top to bottom and front to back halfway through. Fill a pie plate with about 2 cups of confectioners' sugar. immediately roll the hot cookies, a few at a time, in the confectioners' sugar to coat; then transfer to the parchment-lined racks to cool completely. Reroll the cooled cookies in the confectioners' sugar and transfer to a plate.

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POTATO CHIP COOKIES 
Makes about 30 cookies    

Do not refrigerate or freeze the unbaked dough, as the potato chips will become soggy.

8 ounces (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature and more for shaping
1/2 cup granulated sugar; more for shaping
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
8 ounces (a scant 2 cups) all purpose flour
2 ounces (1/2 cup) finely chopped pecans
1/2 cup finely crushed potato chips

Position oven racks in the middle and top of the oven. Heat the oven to 350F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment. With an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed in a large bowl until creamy and well blended, about 4 minutes, scraping the bowl as needed. Add the vanilla and beat again until blended. Add the flour, pecans, and potato chips and mix on low speed until just blended. Shape heaping teaspoons of dough into 1-inch balls. Arrange the balls about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Put some sugar in a shallow bowl. Lightly grease the bottom of a glass or measuring cup with soft butter. Dip the glass into the sugar and press the glass down on a dough ball until it's about 1/4 inch thick. Repeat dipping and pressing with the remaining balls. Bake until the cookies look dry on top and the edges are light golden, 10 to 12 minutes, rotating and swapping the positions of the sheets for even baking. Let the cookies cool on the sheets on racks for 5 minutes before transferring them to racks to cool completely. Store at room temperature or freeze in an airtight container, separating the cookie layers with waxed paper.

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CHOCOLATE PRESS COOKIES 
Makes about 4 1/2 dozen cookies.    

1 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups unsifted all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/2 teaspoon salt

Cream butter, sugar, egg and vanilla in large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Combine flour, cocoa and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture. Fill a cookie press with dough. Press cookies onto cool, ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350F for 5 to 7 minutes or until set. Remove from cookie sheet; cool on wire rack.

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CHOCO-PISTACHIO MERINGUES 
Makes about 3 dozen cookies     

3 large egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup superfine sugar
1/3 cup unsalted pistachios, ground
4 drops green food coloring
6 ounces milk chocolate, broken up into small pieces

Heat oven to 200F. Line 2 large baking sheets with foil. In a large bowl, combine whites, cream of tartar and salt. On medium high speed, beat until frothy. Gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until stiff peaks form. Fold in pistachios and green food coloring. Place in large pastry bag with 1 1/2-inch round tip. Pipe 1 1/2-inch-wide rounds on sheets, spacing about 1 1/2 inches apart. Gently smooth tops of rounds with the back of a spoon. Bake in 200F oven 1 1/2 hours. Turn oven off and leave oven door closed. Let stand in oven 30 minutes. Transfer sheets to wire racks; let cool. Remove the cookies from the sheets. Place the chocolate in a 2-cup glass measuring cup. Microwave on 100 power for 30 seconds. Stir and microwave 30 seconds more. Stir until melted. Dip half of the top side of each cookie into the melted chocolate; scrape excess back into cup. Place on waxed paper or foil to set.

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TRIPLE CHOCOLATE CRANBERRY OATMEAL COOKIES
Makes about 30

Chunks of fresh cranberries and dark, milk, and white chocolate chips dress up oatmeal cookies for the holidays.

1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup old-fashioned oats
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh or frozen cranberries
2 ounces milk chocolate or white chocolate, chopped (for drizzling)

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350F. Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in medium bowl to blend. Using electric mixer, beat butter and both sugars in large bowl until smooth. Beat in egg and vanilla. Add flour mixture and oats and stir until blended. Stir in all chocolate chips and cranberries. Drop batter by rounded tablespoonfuls onto prepared sheets, 2 inches apart. Bake cookies, 1 sheet at a time, until edges are light brown, about 16 minutes. Cool on sheets 5 minutes. Transfer to rack; cool completely. Stir chopped milk chocolate in top of double boiler until melted and smooth. Using small spoon, drizzle melted chocolate over cookies in zigzag pattern. Let stand until milk chocolate sets, about 1 hour. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Store in airtight container at room temperature.)

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CHOCOLATE CHUNK, ORANGE AND HAZELNUT COOKIES
Makes about 24

A mug of hot chocolate or a glass of milk would complement these updated, sophisticated chocolate chip cookies.

1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
4 teaspoons grated orange peel
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
3 3-ounce bars bittersweet chocolate, cut into 1/3-inch
chunks
1 1/2 cups hazelnuts (about 6 ounces), toasted, husked, chopped

Preheat oven to 375F Combine flour, baking soda and * teaspoon salt in medium bowl; whisk to blend. Using electric mixer, beat brown sugar, unsalted butter, grated orange peel and vanilla extract in large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in egg. Add flour mixture and mix just until combined. Mix in chocolate chunks and toasted hazelnuts. Drop batter by heaping tablespoonfuls onto 2 ungreased baking sheets, spacing 2 inches apart. Bake cookies until just firm to touch and beginning to brown, about 13 minutes. Transfer to racks; cool. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.)

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GINGER SHORTBREAD COOKIES
Makes about 36

2 1/3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup coarsely chopped crystallized ginger (about 1 1/2 ounces)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Additional powdered sugar (optional)

Combine flour, 3/4 cup powdered sugar, ground ginger and salt in medium bowl. Combine crystallized ginger and 1 tablespoon sugar on work surface; chop finely. Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until light. Add lemon peel and extracts. Beat in crystallized ginger mixture. Beat dry ingredients into butter mixture in 4 additions. Transfer dough to floured work surface. Divide dough in half. Roll each half into 6-inch log. Shape each log into 2x1x6-inch-long rectangular log. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate 2 hours. Preheat oven to 325F. Lightly butter 2 large baking sheets. Cut each dough log into 1/3-inch-thick cookies. Transfer cookies to prepared baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart (cookies will spread slightly during baking). Bake cookies until edges are pale golden, about 24 minutes. Cool cookies on baking sheets 3 minutes. Using metal spatula, transfer cookies to racks. Sift additional powdered sugar over warm cookies, if desired. Cool completely. (Can be made ahead. Store in airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week.)

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PUMPKIN ALMOND CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
Makes about 36

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped roasted salted almonds

Heat oven to 350F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. In large bowl, beat butter and sugar at medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in pumpkin, vanilla and egg. In medium bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add flour mixture to butter mixture, mixing just until well blended. Stir in chocolate chips and almonds. Drop by teaspoons onto baking sheets. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from baking sheets; cool on wire racks.

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POINSETTIA COOKIES
Makes about 5 dozen

2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 cup butter
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon rum extract
3 cups sifted flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup butterscotch flavored morsels
Granulated sugar
1/2 cup candled red cherries, cut in wedges (8 wedges from a cherry)

Beat together confectioners' sugar and butter; add eggs and extracts. Sift together flour and salt; stir into butter mixture. Add coconut and 3/4 cup of the butterscotch morsels. Chill dough until firm. Roll into 1-inch balls. Place on ungreased cookie sheets. Flatten cookies with bottom of glass that has been dipped in granulated sugar. Place a butterscotch morsel in center of each cookie. Place cherry wedges in a circle to resemble a poinsettia. Bake at 375F for about 12 minutes or until golden.

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CREAM CHEESE SPRITZ
Makes about 100

8 ounces (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
3 ounces cream cheese softened at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1 egg white, lightly beaten
Colored sugars or other decorations for sprinkling (optional)

Heat the oven to 375F. With a stand mixer (use the paddle attachment) or a hand mixer, beat the butter, cream cheese, and sugar in a large bowl on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the egg yolk and vanilla and beat again until blended. Add the flour and mix on low speed until blended. Scoop up about a quarter of the dough and, using a small amount of flour if needed, shape the dough into a log just narrower than the barrel of the cookie press. Slide the log into the cookie press and spritz the cookies directly onto ungreased baking sheets about 1 inch apart. Brush the tops with the beaten egg white and sprinkle with colored sugar if using. Repeat with the remaining dough. Bake until the cookies are just golden around the edges, 8 to 10 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet on a rack for 5 minutes before transferring them to a rack to cool completely. Be sure the baking sheet is cool before spritzing more cookies. Store at room temperature or freeze in an airtight container, separating the cookie layers with waxed paper.

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CHOCOLATE-CHUNK COOKIES WITH PECANS, DRIED APRICOTS, AND TART CHERRIES
Makes about 34 cookies
 
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
9 ounces fine-quality bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate
3/4 cup quartered dried apricots (about 4 ounces)
1 cup dried tart cherries (about 5 ounces)
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans (about 4 ounces)

Preheat oven to 375F. In a bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl with an electric mixer beat together butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, and beat in flour mixture until just combined. Chop chocolate into 1/2-inch pieces and stir into batter with apricots, cherries, and pecans. Working in batches, drop dough by heaping tablespoons about 2 inches apart onto ungreased baking sheets and bake in upper and lower thirds of oven, switching position of sheets halfway through baking, about 12 minutes total, or until golden. Cool cookies on baking sheets on racks 5 minutes and transfer with a spatula to racks to cool. Cookies keep in airtight containers at room temperature 5 days.

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LEMON COCONUT COOKIES
Makes about 64 cookies
 
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons freshly grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut, toasted and cooled
Confectioners' sugar for sprinkling the cookies

In a bowl with an electric mixer cream the butter with the sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy and beat in the zest, the vanilla, and the lemon extract. Add the flour and the salt, beat the mixture until it forms a dough, and stir in the coconut. Chill the dough for 1 hour, or until it is firm enough to handle. Halve the dough and on a sheet of wax paper form each half into an 8-inch log, using the wax paper as a guide. Chill the logs, wrapped in the wax paper, for at least 4 hours or overnight.  Preheat the oven to 300F. Cut the logs into 1/4-inch-thick slices with a sharp knife and arrange the slices 2 inches apart on lightly butter baking sheets. Bake the cookies in the middle of the oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until they are pale golden, transfer them to racks, and sprinkle them generously with some of the confectioners' sugar. Let the cookies cool and dust them lightly a second time with the remaining confectioners' sugar.

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CHOCO-NUT CLOUDS
Makes 5 Dozen Cookies

4 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon Cream of Tartar
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup chopped chocolate-covered peanuts

Preheat oven to 275F.  Place egg whites, vinegar, vanilla, Cream of Tartar and salt in a bowl. Beat until soft peaks are formed. Add sugar very gradually, about a tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition. Continue beating until mixture is glossy and stiff peaks can be formed. Lightly fold in chopped chocolate-covered peanuts. Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls onto parchment-lined baking sheets.  Bake in a very slow oven, 275F, for 30 minutes or until crisp, dry and lightly browned.  Cool a few minutes and then remove from the parchment.  Since these cookies are really "dried out" as much as baked, you may also place them in a preheated oven, turn off the heat and leave the cookies to "bake" overnight.  With this method, the cookies stay white in color.

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SUPER CHUNK JUMBLES
Makes About 3 Dozen

1/2 cup (l stick) butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
l egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 ounces of white chocolate chips (or white chocolate chopped)
2 cups chopped walnuts, toasted
1 1/2 cups raisins

HEAT oven to 350F. Beat butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda and salt. Stir in white chocolate, walnuts and raisins. Drop by rounded tablespoons, 1 1/2 inches apart, onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown. Coo1 2 to 3 minutes and remove from cookie sheets. Cool on wire racks.

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HOLIDAY OATMEAL M&M COOKIES
Makes About 4 Dozen

1 cup butter
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 tablespoons milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 1/2 cups Quaker Oats (Quick or Old Fashioned, uncooked
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups holiday colored M&Ms
1 cup coarsely chopped nuts

Heat oven to 350F. Beat first six ingredients until smooth. Add combined oats, flour, soda and salt. Mix well. Stir in remaining ingredients. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls 3-inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 8 to 10 minutes for chewy or 10 to 12 minutes for crisp cookies. Cool 2 minutes. Remove to wire rack. Cool completely.

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CHERRY ALMOND OATMEAL COOKIES
Makes about 4 dozen
 
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 cups rolled oats
1 1/4 cups dried cherries, sniped
1/2 cup kirsch or triple sec or hot water
1/4 cup chopped almonds

Preheat oven to 375F. In a small bowl combine cherries and kirsch, triple sec or hot water. Let stand for 30 minutes; drain well. Meanwhile, combine butter and brown sugar, sugar, baking soda and salt until well blended. Beat in eggs. Beat in flour until well mixed. Stir in oats. Add drained cherries and almonds. Drop dough by rounded teaspoons 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 7-9 minutes or until tops are golden. Let cookies stand on cookie sheet for 1 minute. Transfer to wire rack; let cool. To store: layer cookies between waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

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PRETZEL, PEANUT AND CHOCOLATE CHUNK COOKIES
Makes about 6 dozen

1 cup butter softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
3 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
2 cups pretzel sticks halved
1 c. coarsely chopped peanuts dry roasted
1 c. semisweet chocolate chunks
1 cup raisins

In large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well. Beat in vanilla. Combine the flour and baking powder; gradually add to creamed mixture. Stir in pretzels, peanuts, chocolate chunks and raisins. Drop by heaping tablespoons 2in apart onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake 350 10-14 min or until edges are golden brown. cool 2 min before removing to wire racks. Makes 6 1/2 dozen .

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CHRISTMAS ROCKS
Makes about 96

1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup butter or margarine
3 large eggs
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground mace
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 tablespoon strong coffee
1/2 cup currants (cleaned)
1 cup seeded raisins
1 pound chopped pecans
1/4 cup candied cherries
1/4 pound candied pineapple
1/4 pound candied citron peel
1/4 pound dates
1/4 pound candied orange peel

 

 

Preheat oven to 325F. Grease cookie sheets. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat eggs until foamy, add to mixture. Sift flour with spices, cocoa and soda. Save out 1/2 cup of flour mixture. Add the rest of flour mixture to butter mixture. Stir in coffee. Cut fruits into small slivers and dredge fruit and chopped pecans lightly in flour saved out for this. Add to fruit and the rest of flour to batter, mixing thoroughly. Drop by teaspoon onto greased cookie sheet. Do not place too close together. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Do not over-brown. Store cookies in air tight containers.

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PISTACHIO CRANBERRY MEXICAN WEDDING CAKES
Makes about 6 1/2 dozen

2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar plus more for coating
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup shelled unsalted natural pistachios (about 4 ounces), chopped
1 cup dried cranberries (can also use dried tart cherries)
3 1/3 cups sifted cake flour
1 2/3 cups sifted all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350F. Butter 3 heavy large baking sheets. Using electric mixer, beat 2 cups butter and 1 cup powdered sugar in large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla and salt, then pistachios and cherries. Using spatula, stir in all flour (do not overmix dough). Shape dough by generous tablespoonfuls into football-shaped ovals. Place on prepared sheets, spacing 1 inch apart. Bake cookies, 1 sheet at a time, until bottoms just begin to color, about 16 minutes. Cool cookies on sheets 10 minutes before coating. Pour generous amount of powdered sugar into medium bowl. Working with 5 or 6 warm cookies at a time, add cookies to bowl of sugar; gently turn to coat thickly. Transfer cookies to sheet of waxed paper. Repeat to coat cookies with sugar again; cool completely. do ahead Can be made 4 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.

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ORANGE SHORTBREAD COOKIES WITH CHOCOLATE CHIPS
Makes about 20

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons (packed) grated orange peel
1/2 teaspoon orange oil (can substitute 1 teaspoon of orange extract, but it will not be as intense)
1 large egg yolk
3 tablespoons whipping cream
8 ounces double chocolate chips (such as Ghirardelli/can substitute regular semisweet chocolate chips)
 

Position rack in center of oven; preheat to 350F. Butter and flour large baking sheet. Whisk first 3 ingredients in medium bowl. Beat butter, sugar, orange peel, and orange oil or extract in large bowl until fluffy. Beat in yolk, then cream. Add flour mixture; beat until dough comes together in moist clumps. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop dough by generous tablespoonfuls onto baking sheet, spacing 3/4 inch apart. Using moistened fingertips, flatten each to 1/2-inch-thick round. Bake cookies until golden, about 18 minutes. Transfer to rack; cool. (Store airtight at room temperature.)

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CHERRY, CASHEW AND WHITE CHOCOLATE COOKIES
Makes About 3 Dozen

These are just as good without the glaze
 

For the cookies:

1 1/4 cups flour

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1 egg

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup cashew halves

1 cup white baking chips

3/4 cup dried cherries

For the glaze:
4 ounces chopped white chocolate (do not use baking chips as they will not melt smoothly enough to drizzle.)

 

Heat oven to 350F. In medium bowl, stir together flour, baking soda and salt. In large bowl, beat butter, sugar and brown sugar at medium speed 1 minute or until smoothly blended. Beat in egg, lemon juice and vanilla 1 minute or until blended. (Mixture may look curdled.) Reduce speed to low; beat in flour mixture just until blended. Stir in cashews, white baking chips and dried cherries. Drop by tablespoons 2 inches apart on baking sheets (line with parchment, if desired). Bake, one sheet at a time, 12 to 14 minutes or until edges are light brown and centers are light golden brown. Cool on baking sheet on wire rack 1 minute. Remove from baking sheet; cool completely on wire rack. To glaze: place chopped white chocolate in small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on medium 1 to 1/2 minutes or until almost melted; stir until smooth. Drizzle over cookies. Cookies can be stored in airtight container at room temperature.

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WHITE CHOCOLATE, CRANBERRY AND MACADAMIA COOKIES
Makes 6 dozen

3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries (about 6 ounces)
1 1/2 cups white chocolate chips (about 8 1/2 ounces)
1 cup coarsely chopped roasted salted macadamia nuts (about 4 1/2 ounces)

Preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Sift first 3 ingredients into medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until fluffy. Add both sugars and beat until blended. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, then vanilla. Add dry ingredients and beat just until blended. Using spatula, stir in cranberries, white chocolate chips, and nuts. For large cookies, drop dough by heaping tablespoonfuls onto prepared sheets, spacing 2 1/2 inches apart. For small cookies, drop dough by level tablespoonfuls onto sheets, spacing 11/2 inches apart. Bake cookies until just golden, about 18 minutes for large cookies and about 15 minutes for small cookies. Cool on sheets. Make Ahead: Can be made ahead. Store airtight at room temperature up to 2 days or freeze up to 2 weeks.

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DEATH BY WHITE CHOCOLATE COOKIES
Makes 5 dozen  
 
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter softened
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup flour`
1/4 tsp baking powder
6 ounces white chocolate chunks
2 cups chopped macadamia nuts or almond slivers chopped

Heat oven to 350F. Melt chocolate and stir until smooth and a bit cool.  Stir in sugar, butter , eggs, vanilla with a wooden spoon until well blended. Stir in flour and baking powder. Stir in white chocolate and nuts.  Drop rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets and baked for 7 to 10 minutes until cookies are puffed and feel set to the touch. Cool 1 minute on sheets and put on wire rack to cool completely.

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WHITE CHOCOLATE, PUMPKIN AND MACADAMIA COOKIES
Makes 3 dozen cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin (not pie filling)
l egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups (10 ounces) vanilla milk chocolate chips
2/3 cup toasted macadamia nuts, coarsely chopped

In small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and cardamom; set aside. In large mixer bowl, cream butter and sugars. Add pumpkin, egg, and vanilla; beat until light and creamy. Add dry ingredients; mix well. Stir in vanilla chips and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto parchment covered cookie sheets. Flatten slightly with back of spoon. Bake in preheated 350F oven for 10 to 15 minutes, or until lightly browned and set. Cool slightly; remove from cookie sheet. Cool on wire racks.

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CHOCOLATE GINGER CRACKLES
Makes about 2 1/2 dozen

These moist cookies are called crackles because as they bake the tops crack to form beautiful brown and white patterns.

1 cup granulated sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
2 large eggs
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/3 cup minced candled ginger
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar

In a bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the granulated sugar with the butter. Mix in the eggs, then add the cocoa and vanilla; beat at medium speed until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the bowl and add the flour, baking powder and salt. Mix the dough for 2 minutes. Stir in the chocolate chips and ginger. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight. Preheat the oven to 350F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or foil. Form the dough into 1-inch balls and coat them generously with the confectioners' sugar. Arrange the balls 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake for about 9-12 minutes, or until the tops look cracked. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

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BANANA PECAN GINGER COOKIES
Makes 4 1/2 Dozen

You can prepare this dough in the food processor or using a mixer.
 

2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup(2 sticks) butter, room temperature (but NOT warm)
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup mashed banana (about 1
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup chopped pecans (about 2 ounces)

Preheat oven to 400F. Grease cookie sheets. Sift first 4 ingredients into medium bowl. Cream butter in processor, about 20 seconds. Add sugar and process until fluffy, about 20 seconds, stopping once to scrape down sides of bowl. Mix in banana and lemon juice. Add flour mixture and process until just blended, about 7 seconds, stopping once to scrape down sides of work bowl. Add 1/2 cup chopped pecans and process just until dough gathers together, using on/off turns. Spoon batter by rounded teaspoonfuls onto prepared sheets, spacing 2 inches apart. Using dampened fingers, flatten to 1 1/2-inch-wide rounds. Bake until edges are light brown and tops are golden, about 12 minutes. Cool on sheets on racks 2 minutes. Transfer cookies to racks; cool completely.

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HAZELNUT SANDIES
Makes 42

1 cup butter
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup finely chopped hazelnuts
42 whole hazelnuts
3/4 cup sifted powdered sugar

Beat butter in mixing bowl with electric mixer on medium to high speed 30 seconds or till softened. Add about half the flour, the sugar, water, and vanilla. Beat till thoroughly combined. Stir in remaining flour. Stir in nuts. Shape 2 teaspoons dough into a ball around a whole hazelnut for each cookie. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in 325F oven 20 minutes or till bottoms are lightly browned. Remove; cool on rack. Gently shake cookies in bag with powdered sugar.

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OATMEAL ICEBOX COOKIES
Makes 6 to 7 Dozen

1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup butter softened, but not warm
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sugar
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 eggs
3 cups regular rolled oats
1 cup chopped walnuts

Stir together the flour, salt, baking soda, ginger and set aside. In a large bowl, cream butter, Add the vanilla and sugars and beat until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time beating after each. At low speed, gradually mix in the flour mixture. Then add the oats. Mix just to blend. Stir in the walnuts. Divide the dough in fourths. Put on wax paper and mold into rolls. Refrigerate overnight. With serrated knife, slice 1/4 in thick slices and put on foiled-lined cookie sheets. Put 2 inches apart--cookies will spread. Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Slide foil and cookies off the sheet and cool. Then put cookies on a rack to cool completely.

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DATE NUT ORANGE OATMEAL COOKIES
Makes 4 dozen

1 cup butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
2 teaspoons finely shredded orange peel
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 cups>rolled oats
1 cup chopped pitted dates
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 375F. Combine butter and brown sugar, sugar, baking soda and salt until well blended. Beat in eggs and orange peel. Beat in flour until well mixed. Stir in oats. Add dates and pecans. Drop dough by rounded teaspoons 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 7-9 minutes or until tops are golden. Let cookies stand on cookie sheet for 1 minute. Transfer to wire rack; let cool. To store: layer cookies between waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

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SPICY RAISIN CARROT OATMEAL COOKIES
Makes 4 dozen

1 cup butter softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 cups rolled oats
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup shredded carrots

Preheat oven to 375F. Combine butter and brown sugar, sugar, cinnamon, cloves, baking soda and salt until well blended. Beat in eggs. Beat in flour until well mixed. Stir in oats. Stir in raisins and carrots. Drop dough by rounded teaspoons 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 7-9 minutes or until tops are golden. Let cookies stand on cookie sheet for 1 minute. Transfer to wire rack; let cool. To store: layer cookies between waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

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CHERRY PISTACHIO CHOCOLATE CHIP
Makes 3 dozen cookies

2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cups packed brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup dried cherries or cranberries
3/4 cup finely chopped pistachios

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and center a baking rack. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugars; beat in the eggs and vanilla extract until smooth. Mix flour, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl; add to the large bowl, and beat until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chips, cherries, and pistachios. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake cookies for 12 minutes, or until firm and golden brown around the edges. Transfer to a rack and cool for 15 minutes. To store cookies, layer between pieces of waxed paper to prevent sticking and place in an air-tight container. Properly stored, cookies should last a couple of weeks. Cookies may also be frozen.

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LEMON ROSEMARY CHRISTMAS TREES
Makes 3 to 3 1/2 dozen cookies

For the Cookies:
15 ounces (3-1/3 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon table salt
8 ounces (1 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon  finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 large egg
1 teaspoon  pure vanilla extract
For the Icing:
1 large egg white
6-1/2 ounces (1-1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoon) confectioners' sugar; more as needed
1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Decorating sugar or edible sprinkles (optional)

Make the cookies:
In a medium bowl, whisk the flour and salt. With a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Mix in the lemon zest and rosemary. Add the egg and vanilla; continue beating until well blended and smooth, about 30 seconds more. Reduce the speed to low and gradually add the dry ingredients. Mix until the dough is just combined; don't overmix. Divide the dough into 2 equal portions. Roll one half of the dough between two sheets of parchment to an even 3/16-inch thickness. Slide the dough and parchment onto a cookie sheet and refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes. Repeat with the remaining dough.
Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and heat the oven to 350F. Line four cookie sheets with parchment. Using a 3-1/2-inch (or similar) Christmas tree cookie cutter, cut out the cookies and arrange them 1 inch apart on the cookie sheets. Press the scraps together, reroll, and cut (if the dough becomes too soft to handle, chill until firm). Repeat one more time and then discard the scraps. Repeat with the remaining dough. Bake two sheets at a time until the cookies' edges are golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes, rotating and swapping the sheets' positions halfway through for even baking. Cool the cookies on racks.
Make the icing:
In a medium bowl, whisk the egg white, sugar, and lemon juice until smooth. If not using immediately, transfer the icing to a small bowl and press plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the icing to prevent it from drying out.
Decorate the cookies:
Spoon some of the icing into a small pastry bag with a small (3/16 inch) plain tip. (Or use a small plastic bag and cut a tiny bit off a bottom corner of the bag.) Pipe the icing onto the cookies to outline the rim. (If the icing is too thick to pipe, put it back in the bowl and stir in water, a drop at a time, until it pipes easily but still retains its shape. If the icing is too thin, add confectioners' sugar, 1 tsp. at a time.) If using decorating sugar or sprinkles, apply them while the icing is wet. Once the icing is completely dry and hard, store the cookies in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

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RUSSIAN TEA CAKES (BULLETS)
Makes 4 Dozen Cookies

Also great with chopped Macadamia nuts

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
3/4 cup finely chopped nuts
1/4 teaspoon salt
Powdered sugar for rolling

Heat oven to 375F. Mix butter, 1/2 cup powdered sugar and the vanilla in large bowl. Stir in flour, nuts and salt until dough holds together. Chill for 1 hour or more. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place about 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until set and slightly golden on the bottom--but not brown. Remove from cookie sheet. Cool slightly on wire rack. 5. Roll warm cookies in powdered sugar; cool on wire rack. Roll in powdered sugar again.

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PISTACHIO AND DRIED CHERRY BISCOTTI
Makes 4 Dozen

1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 large eggs
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoons orange zest
2 teaspoon lemon zest
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup dried cherries
1 cup unsalted, shelled pistachios

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine first 6 ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle. Blend on low speed for 30 seconds. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, whisk together eggs and next 5 ingredients. Add egg mixture to flour mixture; beat on low speed until combined, about 1 1/2 minutes. Fold in cherries and pistachios.  Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface; divide in half. Using floured hands, shape each dough half into a 16-inch-long log. Brush off excess flour; transfer logs to prepared sheet, spaced 5 inches apart. Flatten each log into a 2-inch-wide strip. Bake, rotating sheet halfway through, until browned and set, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a rack; let cool for 15 minutes. Reduce oven to 250F and arrange 1 rack in top third of oven and 1 rack in bottom third. Line a second baking sheet with parchment paper. Transfer biscotti to a work surface. Using a serrated knife, cut each strip diagonally into 2/3-inch-thick slices. Arrange slices, cut side down, on baking sheets. Bake biscotti, rotating baking sheets halfway through, until crisp, about 40 minutes. Transfer baking sheets to racks; let cool. MAKE AHEAD: Can be made 3 days ahead. Store in an airtight container at room temperature. 

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CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES WITH ESPRESSO AND CINNAMON
Makes 4 Dozen

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups packed golden brown sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 large egg
4 teaspoons instant espresso powder
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 6 ounce package semisweet chocolate chips (1 cup)
1 6 ounce package milk chocolate chips (1 cup)
1 cup toasted walnuts chopped

Preheat oven to 350F. Spray baking sheets with nonstick spray.  Whisk together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt in a medium sized bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat together sugar, butter, egg, espresso powder, and vanilla extract in a large bowl until well blended. Beat in dry ingredients. Stir in all chocolate chips and walnuts. Spoon (or lift) dough in rounded tablespoonfuls onto prepared baking sheet, spacing about 2 inches apart. Do not flatten dough. Bake cookies until brown on top but slightly soft to the touch, about 14 minutes. Cool on sheet for 2 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool.

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GINGER PECAN SNOWBALLS
Makes 5 dozen

2 1/4 cups flour
2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 2/3 cup powdered sugar, divided
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup finely chopped pecans
1/2 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger

Whisk flour, spices and salt in a medium bowl; set aside. Cream butter, and at low speed, add in 2/3 cup of powdered sugar. Beat until smooth; add vanilla. Beat in flour mixture just until blended, then stir in pecans and ginger. Cover and chill for about 30 minutes.
Roll dough into 1" balls and place on lightly greased cookie sheets. Bake at 375F for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are golden brown on the bottom and slightly firm to the touch. Place on a wire rack, and while cookies are still warm, roll in the remaining powdered sugar. Finish cooling the cookies on the wire rack, and then roll in the powdered sugar one more time.  

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ALMOND CRESCENTS
Makes 4 Dozen

1 cup butter
1/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup (3 ounces) ground blanched almonds
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 2/3 cup flour
powder sugar

Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Stir in almonds, salt, then flour.  When well mixed, wrap dough and chill until firm--2 hours or more.  Heat oven to 350F.  Shape scant spoonfuls into crescents and put on ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake 15 minutes until firm to touch.  Cool slightly and roll in powder sugar.

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APRICOT SPICE AND ALMOND DOODLES
Makes 3 Dozen

3/4 cup chopped almonds
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. table salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/2 tsp. almond extract
3/4 cup chopped dried apricots
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground cloves

Preheat oven to 350F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Toast almonds, spread out on a baking sheet, in the preheating oven until fragrant and lightly browned, 810 minutes. Remove almonds from the oven. Whisk together flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Cream butter and 1 1/2 cups sugar in a large bowl, using a hand mixer on medium speed, until mixture is light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add eggs and almond extract to creamed mixture; beat on low speed until well blended. Add half of the flour mixture; beat on low until ingredients are combined. Add remaining flour, beating only until flour is incorporated into dough. Fold almonds and apricots into dough until evenly distributed. Cover dough; chill at least 1 hour. Combine 1/4 cup sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves in a shallow bowl. Shape dough into 11/2-inch balls. Roll dough balls in the spiced sugar. Transfer cookies to the prepared cookie sheets, spacing cookies 2 inches apart. Bake cookies, one sheet at a time, until edges begin to brown lightly, 1213 minutes. Let cookies cool on cookie sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer them to a rack to cool completely.< Preheat oven to 375 F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

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CRANBERRY AND CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
Makes About 3 Dozen

1 cup cranberries (could also use dried tart cherries) (about 5 1/2 ounces)
1/3 cup
Kirsch or other cherry liquor
2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup semisweet or milk chocolate chips (6 ounces)
1 cup white chocolate chips (6 ounces)

Bring cranberries or cherries, cherry liquor, and 2 tablespoons water to boil in small sauce pan. Remove from heat and let cherries soak for 15 minutes. Drain and pat dry; set aside. Whisk flour, salt, and baking soda in a medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter and both sugars in a large bowl until creamy. Add eggs and extracts, beat to blend. Add flour mixture and beat on low just to blend. Stir in cherries and all chocolate chips. Scoop tablespoonfuls of dough onto prepared baking sheets spacing 1 inch apart. Bake cookies one sheet at a time until edges are light golden brown 11-13 minutes, turning baking sheets halfway through cooking time. Transfer to rack and cool.

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PECAN SANDWICH COOKIES
Makes About 3 Dozen

For the cookie:
1 cup sifted flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
3 ounces pecans divided
For the filling:
2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sifted powder sugar
1/2 square unsweetened chocolate (1/2 ounce)
For the frosting;
1 tablespoon butter
2/3 cups powder sugar
1 egg yolk
1/2 square unsweetened chocolate

Make the cookies:
Preheat oven to 375F.  Sift the flour and sugar into a bowl.  Reserve 15 pecan halves for garnish and grind the rest (best to use a regular grinder and not a food processor for more moist nuts) Add the ground nuts to the flour mixture..  Then add the butter to the mixture and blend together.  Form the dough into 2 rolls in wax paper and chill for at least 2 hours  or overnight.  Slice the cookies in 1/4 inch slices and bake on an ungreased sheet.  Cookies will puff up a bit.
Make the filling:

Melt the chocolate and let cool a bit.  Cream the butter and powder sugar and blend in the chocolate until smooth.  Add a few drops of milk if it is too thick to spread.
Make the frosting:
Melt the chocolate and let cool a bit. Cream the butter and sugar; add the egg yolk and blend. Add the chocolate until blended.  Add a few drops of milk if it is too thick to spread.
Assemble the cookies:
Pair off the cookies to ensure consistency of size of the sandwich pieces.  Spread the filling liberally between the cookies and then frost the top.  Place a pecan half on each frosted cookie and serve.  Can keep in an airtight container for 1 week wth wax paper between the layers to avoid messing up the frosting.

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GINGER MAPLE MACADAMIA COOKIES (Tom's 2014 Taste of Home 1st Prize winner)
Makes 6 dozen
 

For the cookie:
1/2 cups sugar

1 1/2 cups butter

3/4 cup grade b maple syrup
4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 tablespoon ground cinnamo
1 tablespoon ground cloves

1 1/2 cups finely chopped macadamia nuts
For dipping sauce:
8 ounces dark chocolate
1/4 cup minced crystalized ginger

Mix sugar, butter maple syrup in large bowl. Stir in flour, soda, salt, spices and macadamia nuts. Divide dough in half. Shape each half into roll, about 2 inches in diameter Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 3 hours. Heat oven to 350F. Cut rolls into 1/4-inch slices. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake about 9 minutes or until almost no indentation remains when touched. Cool 2 minutes before removing from cookie sheet. Cool completely on wire rack. melt chocolate add crystallized ginger. Dip half of each coolie in chocolate and return to wire rack to dry.  Can be stored in airtight container for 1 week with wax or parchment paper between layers of cookies to avoid chocolate smudges.

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TROPICAL JUMBLES
Makes 5 Dozen

If you want thinner crispier cookies, use all butter.  If you want thicker, more chewy cookies use 1/2 butter and 1/2 shortening.

1 cup butter, softened
1 1/4 cups packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 3 1/2-ounce jar macadamia nuts, chopped (about 1 cup)
1 cup shredded or flaked coconut
1/2 cup chopped candied pineapple, (could also use raisins or snipped dried apricots)
1/2 cup chopped dried mango (could also used dried papaya)
1/2 cup dried banana chips, broken
Recipe Citrus Glaze (optional

In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar and baking soda. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in eggs and vanilla until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour. Stir in macadamia nuts, coconut, pineapple, papaya, and, if using, banana pieces. Drop dough by rounded teaspoon 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in a 375F oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; cool. Optional: When cool, drizzle with Citrus Glaze. If you are eating the cookies right away, the glazing is very nice. If you are going to store the cookies in containers or ship them, glazing is not practical. to store glazed cookies, freeze them between layers of wax paper or parchment. Makes about 60 cookies.
For Citrus Glaze:
In a medium mixing bowl stir together 2 cups sifted powdered sugar and enough orange, lemon, or lime juice (2 to 3 tablespoons) to make glaze of drizzling consistency. Tint bright yellow, orange, or blue-green with food coloring for a tropical look. Or, if desired, divide the glaze into portions and tint each portion with a different color of food coloring.

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What are your favorite cookie recipes? Want to share?

Updated June 15, 2014