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Holiday Cookies – 4 Ways

Get a head start on holiday baking with four festive cookies all from one cookie dough! Traditional shortbread cookies are transformed into vanilla cut-outs, jam-filled thumbprints, cappuccino sandwiches and confetti slice-and-bakes, all dolled-up for your holiday celebrations!

Ingredients

Recipe Details

  1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes. Add vanilla extract and continue mixing.
  2. Add flour and salt, and mix until completely incorporated, scraping down the bowl as needed. Divide the cookie dough into 4 equal portions.
  3. Shape first portion of dough into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and label cut-outs. Mix almond extract into second portion of dough, shape into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and label thumbprints. Mix espresso powder and cinnamon into third portion of dough, shape into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and label cappuccino. Roll the last portion of dough into a log, about 10-inches in length and 1 and 1/2-inches in diameter. Set holiday nonpareils in a rectangular dish and place cookie dough log in the sprinkles, gently pressing to adhere to the dough, until completely covered on all sides. Wrap dough in plastic wrap.
  4. Refrigerate all cookie doughs for at least one hour, or until firm. When ready to bake, Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  5. On a lightly floured surface, roll out cookie dough to about 1/4-inch thickness. Cut out cookies and place on prepared cookie sheets. Refrigerate cookies until firm, at least 20 minutes. Bake cookies, rotating once halfway through, until edges are golden, about 9-11 minutes. Cool cookies on cookie sheets for 10 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  6. In a microwave-safe bowl, melt candy melts in 30-second increments until fluid. Pour into a disposable piping bag and drizzle across cookies. Immediately sprinkle with rainbow nonpareils or sprinkles before chocolate sets. Store cookies in a single layer in an airtight container.
  7. For the thumbprint cookies: With a cookie scoop, scoop and roll the cookie dough into 1-inch balls on prepared cookie sheets, leaving about 2 inches between cookies. Press a thumbprint into the center of each ball and using a 1/4 teaspoon, fill with jam. Bake cookies, rotating once halfway through, until edges are golden, about 10-13 minutes. Cool cookies on cookie sheets for 10 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  8. In a microwave-safe bowl, melt white chocolate in 30 second increments until fluid. Pour chocolate into disposable piping bag and drizzle over cookies. Sprinkle with toasted almonds right away to make sure they stick to the chocolate. Store cookies in a single layer in an airtight container.
  9. For the cappuccino sandwich cookies: On a lightly-floured surface, roll out cookie dough to about 1/4-inch thickness. Using star cookie cutter, or cutter of your choice, cut out cookies and place on prepared cookie sheets. Refrigerate cookies until firm, at least 20 minutes. Bake cookies, rotating once halfway through, until edges are golden, about 7-9 minutes. Cool cookies on cookie sheets for 10 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  10. To make the chocolate ganache, place 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate in a small bowl and set aside. In a 1-quart saucepan, bring heavy cream up to a scant boil over medium heat. Pour over chocolate and stir until smooth. Stir in liqueur, and set ganache aside to set up, stirring occasionally.
  11. When ready to assemble cookies, spread or pipe 1/2 teaspoon chocolate ganache on a cookie; press a second cookie on top to form a sandwich. Repeat with remaining cookies and ganache. Refrigerate cookies for about 20 minutes to set up.
  12. To decorate cookies, melt remaining 1/2 cup of chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl in 30 second increments until fluid. Dip cookies into chocolate, wiping the excess on the edge of the bowl, and set on parchment paper to set up. When chocolate is completely set, dip the back end of a small paint brush into edible gold paint and press gently on the chocolate, creating dots. Refrigerate cookies in a single layer in an airtight container.
  13. For the confetti slice and bake cookies: Cut cookies into 1/3-inch thick rounds and place on prepared cookie sheets. If you find the dough cracking when you cut it, allow it to sit on the counter for about 5 minutes to take the chill off and then slice it. Bake cookies, rotating once halfway through, until set and just golden around the edges, about 10-13 minutes. Cool cookies on cookie sheets for 10 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. Store cookies in an airtight container.

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