Christmas Cookies

This recipe is from Coles’ free Christmas magazine. The magazine is available in Coles supermarkets and also on the Coles website.

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The cookies are very plain, allowing you to decorate them as you please. The recipe can be used to make  cookies of any shape; it’s also a good one for kids to make and enjoy. Next time, I will use Donna Hay for cookies instead of this recipe. The Donna Hay’s mixture is more like shortbread and sweeter tasting. I will use it for another batch of Christmas cookies closer to Christmas day.

I do not own a food processor, so I used my electric beaters. They will work as long as the butter is soft.

Be careful with the cooking time on these. You don’t want them golden brown on top, only underneath. I found 8-10 minutes was enough time, but this will depend on the size and thickness of your cookies. Cook small cookies on a separate tray to large ones, so each can be cooked for the appropriate time.

The topping on my cookies is melted chocolate and icing. Melt chocolate and drizzle over the top of cookies any way you like. Or dip the cookies in icing (icing sugar mixed with food colouring and a tablespoon or two of hot water) and then decorate with sprinkles, M&Ms or cachous. The icing needs to be thick, so add the food colouring to the icing sugar before adding water. Then add the water gradually, while stirring.

Christmas Tree Cookies
Adapted from: Coles’ Christmas magazine

2 cups plain flour
1/2 cup icing sugar mixture, sifted
200g butter, chopped
2 tablespoons cold water

2 cups pure icing sugar
Food colouring
Hot water
Decorations eg: sprinkles, cachous

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius or 160 degrees Celsius for a fan-forced oven. Line baking trays with baking powder.

Place flour, icing mixture and butter into a food processor. Process in short bursts until mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

Add 2 tablespoons cold water and process until mixture forms small, moist clumps. Turn out onto non-stick baking paper or a floured surface and gather the dough into a ball.

Roll out mixture until 1cm thick. Cut out shapes using cookie cutters.

Place onto trays, bake for 8-12 minutes, until cookies are golden brown underneath but still pale on top. Cool in wire rack.

Sift pure icing sugar into a bowl. Add food colouring and stir. Add up to 2 1/2 tablespoons of hot water and stir until smooth. Icing should be thick enough to cling to cookies.

Decorate cookies by dipping them into icing and sprinkling decorations on top. Leave to set.

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