Holiday Cookie Platters

Holiday Cookie Platters
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I often do theme baking for the holidays, and the recipes below were a favorite last year. I made each cookie, then assembled them on platters, which I took to family dinners, sent to work with my husband and took to school for the kids. I had extras which I wrapped and placed into small gift bags that were added to gift baskets I was making for Christmas.
Peppermint Cookies


1 1/4 cups crushed peppermint candy

1 1/3 cup granulated sugar, divided

3/4 cup butter

2 eggs

1 tsp. peppermint extract

3/4 tsp. vanilla extract

2 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp. salt

Grind or crush the peppermint candies in 1/3 cup of the sugar until powdery--a few tiny pieces are okay. Mix flour and salt together in a small bowl and set aside. Mix the butter, eggs, and remaining sugar together in a large bowl. Add in vanilla and peppermint extracts. Add the flour mixture 1/3 at a time with the Form the dough into small balls, about an inch wide. Roll the balls of dough in the crushed candy mixture and place on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 8 minutes at 350 degrees F. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for one minute, remove and roll them in the candy sugar again. Cool on wax paper.

Hazelnut Balls


1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup butter

1 cup hazelnuts, crushed

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1/8 tsp. salt

1 tsp. hazelnut or vanilla extract

confectioners' sugar, sifted

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl except the confectioner's sugar. Using a large wooden mix thoroughly to form dough and chill for 30 minutes. Form the chilled dough into 1-1/4-inch balls. Place 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake in a preheated 375-degree oven for 15-20 minutes or until set. Don't brown or over bake.Allow the cookies to stand 1 minute on the pan then remove to wire rack. Cool until just warm. Roll in the sugar, cool completely, and roll in the sugar again. This makes about 20. Note: You can use other nuts and extracts---almond, pecan etc.

Mocha Balls


1 cup butter, softened

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 tsp. vanilla extract

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tsp. instant coffee powder

1/4 tsp. salt

1 cup chopped or crushed walnuts

confectioners' sugar

Cream the butter, sugar and vanilla. In another bowl mix together the flour, cocoa, coffee and salt. Gradually beat this into creamed mixture. Stir in the nuts. Chill the dough for one hour. Form the chilled dough into 1-inch balls. Place on ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 325 degrees F. for 20 minutes. Cool on rack. While still warm, roll in the confectioners' sugar. Makes about 7 dozen.

Oatmeal Coconut Crisps


2 cups butter, softened

2 cups brown sugar

2 cups granulated sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

4 eggs

3 cups flour, sifted

2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons baking soda

6 cups quick-cooking oats

1 1/2 cups coconut

(optional: mini chocolate chips)

Cream together butter and sugars until light. Stir in vanilla, then add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Sift together the flour, salt, and soda. Add to creamed mixture. Stir in rolled oats and coconut. The dough will be stiff. Drop by tablespoon about 2 inches apart on well-greased baking sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes. Cool on rack. 14 dozen.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Balls


1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs

1 1/2 cups flaked coconut

1 1/2 cups pecans, crushed chopped

1 cup butter or margarine, melted

16 ounces confectioners' sugar, sifted

12 ounces peanut butter

1 tsp. vanilla extract

24 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

3 tbsp. shortening Combine crumbs, coconut, nuts, butter, sugar, peanut butter, and vanilla. Stir well. Shape the mixture into 1-inch balls. Combine chocolate chips and shortening in top of a double boiler; bring water to a boil. Reduce the heat to low; cook until chocolate melts. Dip each peanut butter ball into the chocolate mixture. Place on wax paper to cool. Store in refrigerator. Makes about 9 dozen.

Raspberry Poppy Seed Cookies


1 cup confectioners' sugar

1 cup butter; softened

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 egg

2 cups all-purpose flour

3 tbsp. poppy seeds

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 cup raspberry preserves

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Beat powdered sugar and butter until light. Add vanilla and egg. Blend well. Stir together the flour, poppy seeds and salt in a separate bowl. Add to the butter mixture. Mix well. Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Make an indentation in center of each cookie (finger works well). Fill each with 1/2 teaspoon of preserves. Bake until golden brown, about 20-25 minutes. Cool cookies on rack.

MORE CHRISTMAS COOKIES: My cream cheese cookies are a hit whenever I make them, and people ask for them. The recipes are here.


About The Author

Brenda Hyde is a freelance writer living on ten acres in rural Michigan with her husband and three kids. She is a mom, grandma, gardener, cook and writer. She blogs on all of these topics at


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