Did your favorite make the cut?
I realize that I'm a bit behind the power curve with this article since it's already the middle of January. However, I say "better late than never". So here they are last year's five most popular Christmas Cookie Recipes from my recipe book 'TIS THE SEASON FOR CHRISTMAS COOKIES.
Based on my sales stats as well as reader feedback, I was able to put together this short list of recipes, from gingerbread cookies to Christmas Stollen. Enjoy!
1. Christmas Stollen
This cake-like fruit bread was first mentioned in an official document as 'Dresdner Stollen' in the year 1474. This fruit bread can be found in most German bakeries during the holiday season, and is often referred to as "Weihnachtsstollen" (Weihnachten = Christmas) or "Christstollen". A loaf of Christmas Stollen will keep in the freezer for up to two months.
You can make the cookie dough ahead of time and freeze it for up to three months. Baked, but undecorated cookies keep in the freezer for up to four weeks. Baked and decorated gingerbread cookies will stay fresh up to four weeks in an airtight container. Place wax paper between each layer of cookies to keep them from sticking to each other.
3. Cinnamon Stars
Cinnamon Stars may be THE quintessential traditional German Christmas cookies. Everyone loves these little treats. But many don't like to make them, because the sticky dough can be a bit tricky while cutting the stars. But if you take the time to make them, it is more than worth all the work. They are divine.
Husarenkrapfen (sometimes referred to as Angel's Eyes) are shortcrust cookies, traditionally filled with red currant jam. If you don't like or can't find currant jam, you can use strawberry or raspberry jam instead. The word "Krapfen" comes from the old German word "Krafo" and literally means "Fritter". I like to sprinkle a light dusting of powdered sugar on my Husarenkrapfen to give them the appearance of being covered by snow.
Florentiner (or Florentine Cookies) are lace cookies made from chopped almonds or hazelnuts and dried fruit. They are then sandwiched with chocolate, and you get the most delicious cookies. Be forewarned that you and your kitchen will likely get a bit messy. It's inevitable! I highly recommend wearing either a chef's jacket or an apron. But in the end, these cookies are well worth the effort!
Piper is the author of several non-fiction books, and recently added four historical fiction novels to her ever-expanding collection of published writings, In the Shadow of Her Majesty , The Country Girl Empress, A Life in the Shadow of the Crown, and The Perpetual Traveler. When she isn't busy typing on her computer, she can be found chasing after her furry children or holding on tightly to a good cup of coffee. Follow her on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Goodreads.
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