Christmas cookie baking is one of my favorite traditions. Every year my mom and I spend one of the days after Thanksgiving baking 10s of dozens of Christmas cookies, many of them Italian recipes handed down from her immigrant grandmother. We use fragrant ingredients like orange zest, cocoa, anise and nuts to create delicious treats we only have once a year.
These cookies are my favorites for sentimental reasons as well as their taste.
DeuceDad really loves chocolate chip.
I maintain that there is nothing special or festive about a chocolate chip cookie. I make them all year long and while they are delicious there's nothing Christmas-y about them.
But last year I figured out a compromise - I made chocolate chip Christmas tree cut-outs. The dough is too sticky to roll them out, so I spread the dough on a half-sheet pan, baked, cooled, then cut with a cutter.
The process begins (with some minor sampling from the corner)
The leftovers are the cook's treat:
Feel free to use that idea - you can cut any shape. Enjoy!