Newsflash, readers: It is not Christmas. However, I am posting these Puerto Rican Christmas cookies for you all to enjoy. Not because the snow outside is making me yearn for the blissful early days of winter (It’s REALLY not). Not because my brother has recently been practicing “Good King Wenceslas” on his trombone. Not because there is a fully-bloomed poinsettia in our house.
I am posting this recipe because at this time tomorrow I will be sitting on the beach in Puerto Rico. So while you all spend a few minutes being ragefully envious, please try to accept these cookies as my peace offering. Although, technically I’m not giving you any ACTUAL cookies. That’s up to you.
But really you have no excuse. Besides making tiny balls from the dough, everything else in this recipe is a complete breeze.
The only “Christmassy” thing about these is the hint of nutmeg…but paired with the almond it doesn’t make me want to deck the halls or anything. It’s subtle, and I believe nutmeg can be an anytime spice if it wants to be.
Mine flattened out quite a bit more than I’d like. The first time I had these, my boyfriend’s mom had brought some back around Christmas from one of her first graders. They were round and deliciously soft. Mine are more like little wafers. But that’s ok. They’re great with tea…or, I don’t know….a tall iced tea as you sit on the beach in 80 degree weather squishing sand between your toes.
So long, dear readers! I’ll be back on Monday with more recipes and less taunting.
from the mother of one of Mrs. Meyer’s first graders
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
3/4 cup butter
1/4 cup vegetable shortening (I just used another 1/4 cup of butter to make it an even cup)
1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup sugar
Place oven rack in middle position of the oven. Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine flour and nutmeg; set aside. In a large bowl, beat butter, shortening and extracts with an electric mixer until smooth. Gradually add sugar to butter mixture and cream until mixture is light and fluffy. Blend in flour mixture. Dough should be slightly moist. If dough looks dry, sprinkle with water and work into dough. If dough is sticky, sprinkle with additional flour. Spoon dough by teaspoons and form into balls. Place on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake 15-20 minutes or until golden. Remove to a wire rack to cool.