When Christmas time comes around, I could really care less about the presents (my husband and I don't exchange gifts anymore) or trimming the tree, or caroling, but I do absolutely love being with family and of course, the exchange of holiday cookies.
I love giving and getting the cheap holiday paper plate loaded with all sorts of delicious baked cookies, fudges, nut clusters - whatever. With all the friends Lori from Fake Food Free and I have made over our food blogging lifetimes we thought that we'd love to exchange holiday cookies with whomever wanted to. But, shipping cookies all over the world isn't the most practical, so we decided to exchange recipes instead.
Every participant received a cookie recipe to try, photograph, and post. Later this week, after everyone has posted on their given recipes, Lori and I will do a round up off all the cookies to inspire you for your holiday cookie plate this year.
I had the wonderful fortune of receiving a recipe from Kristin of Dinner du Jour. Dinner du Jour is written by best friends Kristin and Kelly. They are separated by the vast Atlantic Ocean, with Kristin in the Irish countryside and Kelly in Milwaukee. They share their recipes with each other and the rest of us by through their blog and often post a series of recipes so you have inspiration for an entire meal, rather than just a side or main dish.
I was especially excited to receive this Mexican Wedding Cake recipe, because it has the addition of cinnamon, which is not included in the Mexican Wedding Cake recipes I have made in the past. My love for cinnamon is grand and undying - so much so that I recently calculated my consumption of the spice.
Turns out I consume nearly a pound of the spice yearly. I stir a spoonful of it in the oats I eat for breakfast, and sprinkle it over the rice pudding I have after dinner, not to mention the hundreds of teaspoons I put it in to countless baked goods coming out of my kitchen.
So without further ado, here is the Cinnamon Mexican Wedding Cake Recipe, also known as the Russian Tea Cake, and most affectionately known to Kristin as Butterballs!
CINNAMON MEXICAN WEDDING CAKE from Bon Appetit via Kristin of Dinner du Jour
- 1 cup butter, room temp (225 grams)
- 2 cups powdered sugar (240 grams icing sugar)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups flour (240 grams)
- 1 cup walnuts or pecans (100 grams)
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Using an electric mixer, beat the butter in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add 1/2 cup (60 grams) of the powered sugar and the vanilla and beat until well blended. Beat in the flour, then nuts. Divide the dough in half and form each half into ball. Wrap separately in cling film and chill until cold, about 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Whisk the remaining icing sugar and cinnamon in a shallow bowl or pie dish to blend. Set the cinnamon sugar aside.
Working with half of chilled dough, roll 1 scant tablespoon of dough between your palms into balls (I used a small ice cream scoop). Arrange the balls on a large baking sheet, spacing them 1/2 inch apart. Bake for about 18 minutes, until the cookies are golden brown on the bottom and just pale golden on top. Cool the cookies for 5 minutes on the baking sheet, then gently toss or roll the warm cookies in cinnamon sugar to coat them completely. Transfer the coated cookies to a wire rack and allow to cool completely. Repeat this procedure with the remaining half of the dough. Sift any remaining cinnamon sugar over the cookies and serve.
The cinnamon gives these cookies a warm brown coating, a little bit different than the snow white coating these types of cookies usually get, adding another dimension of color to the cookie plate!
Happy Baking! Hope everyone has a wonderful holiday season and enjoys loads of cookies of all different sorts...