Auntie Kris Kringle Cookies

by JM
(Chicago, IL, US)

A favorite holiday cookie to fill the house with the sweet smell of Christmas.


2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks cold butter, cut in chunks
1 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups raspberry or strawberry jam
Icing (see recipe below)

In medium bowl, combine flour and salt. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Add sour cream, first stirring and then kneading with your hands. Dough will be slightly sticky.

Shape into a ball, cover and refrigerate 1 hour. Remove dough from fridge and let sit for 15 to 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350F (180C) degrees. Divide dough into 2 equal parts. Roll out on lightly floured surface to 1/2 inch thickness, adding more flour, if needed if dough becomes too sticky. Cut out with 2-inch round cookie cutter.

Place dough circles about 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Place a small amount (about 1/4-1/2 teaspoon) jam on center of circle. Fold in half and gently pat edges together to form a seam that is closed but not tightly sealed. Some edges will pull away slightly during cooking.

Bake in preheated oven 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown. Cool completely on racks.
Prepare icing. Pipe or frost over cooled cookies.

Icing:

1 cup powdered sugar
3 tablespoons butter
1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons milk

In bowl, combine all ingredients, stirring until smooth.

Story Behind This Recipe:

It was a crisp Fall afternoon and I had just gotten home from another rough day of first grade. I sat down in my bedroom, unzipped my backpack, and pulled out my homework. Just as I was about to open up my math book, the smell of fresh baked goods vented into my room and drew me to the kitchen. Unnoticed, I watched my Grandma from the hallway. She rolled cookie dough with her hands, filled up a cookie sheet with perfectly round circles, and paced around the oven listening to the oven timer click away. When the bell went off and she went to retrieve her batch, I slowly crept into the kitchen on my tiptoes. Very quietly, I slid under the table with the bowl of remaining cookie dough in my hands. Just as I was about to feast on dough, I looked up and could see my Grandma’s feet in front of me. She was standing over me. Just as I tried to creep away in the other direction, she reached down, grabbed the bowl from my hands, pulled me up, and told me that if I wanted a cookie, I had to bake one!

Living with my Grandma motivated me at an early age to cook, bake and eat everything on my plate. Baking easily became a bond that we shared. Besides having fun in the kitchen, my Grandma was a great teacher and if anything, she always had a recipe that would cure my killer sweet tooth! Making holiday cookies became a favorite tradition of ours. After all, it was the only way she could stop me from eating half the dough!

Everyone in my family had their favorite. From sugar to ginger to good old-fashioned chocolate chip, every cookie was promised and delivered on time for the holiday season. No one had to worry that their favorite wouldn't be waiting for them on the famous cookie platter. Unfortunately, for the longest time I had a problem finding my favorite. I liked them all but I never loved or craved a single one. Until one day when my Grandma started having me mix my favorite flavors: raspberry and strawberry. We came up with a unique cookie that my Aunt Kris & I can now call our favorite every holiday season.

I thank my Grandma for her patience with me in the kitchen. Without her, I'd still be eating dough! And…everyone else’s favorite cookie.

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