On the 12th Day of Christmas Cookies I truly saved the best for last. These Russian Teacakes go by a whole host of different names but I just like to call them my very favorite.
Mexican Wedding Cookies or Snowballs, with nuts or without, these melt-in-your-mouth little balls just might be the only holiday treat that's a must-have in my house. These were the first family cookie recipe I learned to bake after I left home.
There are lots of little tips + tricks to making this recipe that I learned from watching my Mom + Grandma over the years. This one really drives home the rationale for hands-on learning of recipes and the importance of truly engaging the younger generations in the kitchen as you go.
We tend to roll the dough into little balls before chilling it, because when it's cold it's often too hard to break off and roll and I've found it helps to keep the dough colder when you pop them into the oven. Important if you've ever made a pie crust, right?
I always remember these hot little cookies just burning my fingertips when I tried to roll them in the powdered sugar. The trick to these melting in your mouth is to pop them right into a bowl of powdered sugar as soon as they come out of the oven. One by one, tossing them with your fingers and a fork until they're well coated. And then, once you've done the entire batch off the cookie sheet, repeat the process for a final coating of sugar.
And there you have it. Generations in the kitchen and the recipes live on.
- 1 cup butter or margarine
- 1/2 cup sifted confectioners sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3/4 finely chopped nuts
Mix butter, sugar and vanilla together. Stir salt and flour together before blending with the butter mixture. Add nuts to mixture and chill the dough. Heat oven to 400 degrees and roll dough into 1 inch balls. Place balls on ungreased cookie sheet and bake 10 to 12 minutes. Do not let cookies brown. After baking, roll in confectioners sugar while still hot. Let cool, and roll in sugar one more time. Enjoy!
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