Monday, December 15, 2014

SRC Cookie Carnival: Russian Tea Cakes

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The Christmas season is something I look forward to every single year. I love the music, the food and the fellowship. I love going to church extra early, and coming back home and watching my kids open their presents with squeals of joy. I guess you could say I just love celebrating the birth of my Saviour! 

I doesn't matter that I'm... um... as old as I am - the  season is just so festive, bright and full of life that I turn into an excited child who just can't wait for Christmas eve. But every year, come December, I am so exhausted and tired, that I can't wait for January to get here! :) Christmas is a lot of work, I guess! But at least most of the Christmas related 'work' is tons of fun! Like today's post!
This month, as a bonus, the Secret Recipe Club that I've joined just recently is having a Christmas Cookie Carnival! How fun... For this event, I was assigned a wonderful blog from my own Group B - meet Melissa from Smells Like Brownies! This chocolate-loving mom of an adorable toddler is so talented! I love her site. Her recipes look and sound fabulous, the photographs are great and her choice of recipes is amazing - I want to eat everything off the screen. And she makes the prettiest wedding cakes! I repeat - SO talented! 

Melissa had a wonderful array of cookie recipes for me to choose from and the super decadent-sounding Fleur de Sel Caramel Cookies were my first pick! Don't they sound divine? But then my eye caught these Mexican Hot Chocolate Crackle cookies! Oooooh cookies that taste like hot chocolate!? Yum! And then my very inquisitive 5 year old came peeping and as I looked through the cookies, this one caught her eye and she asked me what they were! And when I told her that they were snowball cookies, it was all settled. She said she had to have these cookies, and soon. I guess we had decided. And if I didn't give in, I was sure to hear 'snow cookies, mama' every hour for the next two weeks. Never mind that there were other cookies that sounded like heaven in a bite. We had to have snow. 
Thank you Melissa for this yummy recipe that didn't make me regret my daughter's pick. These cookies were really, really good! I've made snowball cookies before, and I've eaten my fair share. It was fun and exciting to try a new recipe! These cookies tasted rich, and nutty and were just the right level of sweet - even with all the 'snow'. The powdered sugar did make it a messy treat for the kids, but it was so worth it!
Russian Tea Cakes/Snow Cookies
Adapted from this recipe on 
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
½ cup confectioner’s sugar, plus extra
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2¼ cups flour
1 tsp. salt
1 cup finely chopped walnuts 

1. Cream the butter and powdered sugar until smooth and fluffy. 
2. Stir in the vanilla and beat for a minute or so. 
3. Add the flour, salt and nuts and stir until it comes together. 
4. Set the mixing spoon aside and gently mix the dough with your fingers till it comes together into a ball. 
5. Pinch of bits of dough and form cookie balls about 1" in size. Lay them out on baking tray/cookie sheet leaving about an inch between each of the cookies. 
6. Bake in a preheated oven at 200C/400F for about 12 minutes. At this point the bottom of the cookie will have colored golden brown but the rest of the cookie will remain whitish. 
7. Remove the cookie sheet from the oven and working quickly, dredge each hot cookie in the powdered sugar and set on a cooling rack. The cookies aren't too hard to handle when they're hot. Just don't touch the hot baking tray. 
8. Leave the cookies on the cooling rack to cool completely. When they're completely cool, dredge them again in the powdered sugar. This time, the sugar will stick a lot better and the cookies will look like they're covered in snow. 
9. Store in an airtight cookie jar away from the reach of little hands - unless you want your whole house covered in a fine layer of powdered sugar. 

Thank you Melissa! Love love love your blog and I will also be making the other two cookies I wanted to make! I can't wait! These were so yummy and buttery and nutty and sugary and so good! The photographs turned out messy because of all the sugar and the two pairs of grubby little hands I had to keep swatting away while trying to get a decent picture! 
EDIT: Just saw the Chocolate Mint Butter Cookies! Yum! And more importantly, - CONGRATULATIONS, Melissa! :)

And thank you Sarah for all that you do for Secret Recipe Club. What a lot of work it must be! Thanks for organizing this cookie carnival! I loved being a part of it! :)

I hope you guys try this recipe. I'm sure it will get added to your Christmas baking list every year. Until next time...

Check out the links below for more awesome Christmas Cookie ideas!

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Melissa Hogarty said...

So glad you enjoyed these! I love how kids latch on to the more creative cookie names and then can't get enough!

Melissa Hogarty said...

P.S., if you saw the number of photos that have my toddler's hands in them, and squished brownies or are so wily!

Debbi Smith said...

These are one of our favorites but I haven't made them in ages! They look great!

Erin @ Making Memories said...

We love these cookies! Excellent pick!

Heather said...

YUM! One of my favorite cookies! Happy Holidays!

Rebekah Rose Hills said...

So pretty - what a great choice for today's Carnival reveal! Yumm!

Lauren Everson said...

What a beautiful post. And how could you say no to a 5 year old!? Merry Christmas!

Flying on Jess Fuel said...

These sound so delicious!! I love anything covered in powdered sugar!!

Susan Pridmore said...

Snowball cookies are perfect for the holidays! And those Mexican Hot Chocolate Crackle Cookies sound fantastic too!!

Leigh said...

So lovely - these cookies look just beautiful and I bet they melted in the mouth.

Wendy Klik said...

Russian Tea Cookies....YUMMO

Saundra Contreras said...

These cookies never get old---love them!

Paul Flynn said...

I like the cake design!

see also:

Jumbodium said...

A innovative and yummy recipe I have ever found. Loved it....I am surely gonna prepare the dish this christmas and want to relish each bite...

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