Anyone else feeling a wee bit overwhelmed? It's December 6th and I have yet to make even one Christmas cookie. It's a situation that certainly needs to be rectified. In the meantime, have a look at 5 of my Christmas cookie staples, as well as a favorite candy that I just couldn't bear to leave out.
As I note, I like to make Christmas cookies all December long. I put them in freezer bags and then when I'm ready to give a plate (or many plates) away, I can mix and match. It's loads of fun for me and hopefully yummy for my friends, too.
1. Dutch Almond Bars. You can choose between the super authentic, purely amazing and slightly more expensive or the somewhat cheaper, still fairly authentic, and still really good. P.S. (Today is Saint Nicolas Day, so show a little Dutch/Flemish love and give these a try. You will not regret it, unless, of course, you have a nut allergy in which case you ought to ring in St. Nicolas's Birthday with the speculaas at #5.)
2. Magic Cookie Bars (aka Seven Layer Cookies aka Dolly Bars)
3. Gingerbread Cookies (the whole chocolate chip pock-marked thing is purely optional and not what I would recommend though my kids thought it was awesome in every way).
4. Kip's Chocolate Chip and M & M Cookies. A perfect cookie for any holiday and one which is less intimidating for those timid about experimenting with unusual Christmas cookies. Also, a winner at any party.
5. Speculaas (a Dutch ginger spice cookie). Another traditional Dutch treat. The Dutch can really rock the whole Christmas holiday, so hop on out of your usual comfort zone and give these a try.
6. Homemade Peanut Butter Cups. These defy gushing. They are beyond perfect. Make them as pictured below with a mold.
Or skip the mold and do a freestyle truffle-like version.
This, my friends, it is just the beginning.