Merry Christmas everyone! Growing up over the years my mom hosted all of the holidays. Christmas Eve being the show stopper. As a kid, it was my favorite time of year. There was never a lack of food on Christmas Eve. Funny, looking back, I don't think a cannoli every graced the dessert table at all. My mom was a great organizer and passed her skills down to me for the holidays and entertaining. Always made sure that meals were served hot, even to 30+ people. As I got older, the baking was delegated to me, which I relished in. Prefer to cook over baking but at Christmas time I love it. A little Christmas music, the tree lit and I'm good to go to bake. I learned from the best and there wasn't a dessert, pastry or cookie that my mom made that didn't taste good.We did however have our share of burnt ones and have had to start over.
I have all her recipes for sweet and savory that she prepared over the holidays. I try to stay true to some of them but with time, things change and I've adjusted. I make some of the traditional Italian cookies but not all as my family is not as big as it was years ago. So I'd like to share with you a few basic ones that I make every year that grace my cookie tray or that I give away to family and friends.
These are not my moms, as her's were a little more labor intensive and makes a ton, these are more traditional that I'd like to share.
Pecan Tassies. A recipe from an old neighbor who has since moved to Indiana. They are rich, buttery, flaky and nutty, what's not to love. Then there is the Coconut Macaroon dipped in chocolate, given to me from a co worker when I worked many moons ago and last but not least is the Swedish Tosca's, from my husbands side of the family, these too rich and buttery and melt in your mouth.
- 1 Stick Butter
- 1 Cup Flour
- 3 oz Cream Cheese
Mix Well, chill for easier handling. Shape into 24 small balls. Press into small muffin tins and work up and around the sides, making a small cup.
- 3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
- 1 Egg
- 1 Tablespoon Butter
- 1 Cup Chopped Pecans
- 1/4 Tsp Vanilla
Mix filling, put 1 tsp mixture into each muffin tin about 3/4 full. Bake at 375 for 20-25 mins or till edges are slightly browned. Cool, remove and sprinkle lightly with confectioners sugar.
Coconut Macaroons Dipped in Chocolate
- 2 1/2 Cups Flaked Coconut
- 2/3 Cup Sugar
- 1/4 Cup Flour
- 4 Egg Whites
- 1 Cup Sliced Almonds
- 1 Tsp Vanilla
- 1 Tsp Almond Extract
8 oz Bag Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips
Directions: Mix all ingredients except chocolate chips. Drop onto a greased baking sheet. Bake 325 for 25 mins, cool remove to a rack.
Melt 1 bag of chocolate chips and dip 1/2 the cookie into the chocolate and place on wax paper to dry.
- 6 Tablespoons Butter
- 1/4 Cup sugar
- 1 Cup sifted Flour
Directions: Mix butter, sugar and cream well, add flour. Divide into 12 Large muffin tins (or 24 small ones), press to sides and botton. Bake 350 degree's for 10 minutes and remove. Add the filling.
Filling: (I double this)
- 1/3 Cup Chopped Walnuts (finely ground)
- 1/4 Cup Sugar
- 2 Tablespoons Butter
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons Heavy Cream
- 2 Tablespoons Flour
Directions: Combine all the ingredients into a saucepan, cook over high heat, bring to a boil stirring constantly. Remove from heat and fill each cup with the filling. Return to oven and bake 10-15 minutes until lightly brown. Cool completely and remove.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Hope you enjoy!