Hey, guys! How has your week been going? Mine’s awesome. Today, is cooking D-Day for me. I’m (with help, of course) making tamales, pozole, and an endless supply of caramels. Can’t wait! As promised, I have an awesome family cookie recipe for you today. In fact, this is my very favorite Christmas cookie recipe, hands down. My mom has been making these for as long as I can remember. In fact, when I shimmy on over to my mom’s house Friday, I’m pretty sure I’ll find some of these hanging out along with some leftover chocolate meringue pie she makes every year for my dad on his birthday, the 21st. It never fails.
There are so many things I love about these cookies. First, they are soooo tasty. They’re a little bit salty, nutty, crunchy, buttery– delish. The flavor kind of reminds me of a pecan sandy, but rolled in powdered sugar. This brings me to the second thing I love about Mexican wedding cakes. They look like little snowballs– like little Olaf babies. Aww!
Lastly, I love these cookies because they are relatively easy. Considering how tasty they are, they are a cinch. You just mix everything except the powdered sugar you use to roll them in, chill, roll, and bake. Toss on a bit of powdered sugar and they’re done. You don’t have to cream sugar and butter together, there are no eggs to add, easy peasy lemon squeezy. To simplify the dough forming part, use a small portion scoop to rock ’em out. You can also enlist the help of family members for rolling them– kids love helping with this part.
Now guys, I’ve got to address the name of these cookies. Since we are a Mexican influenced blog, I’ve got to call false advertising on the title. These cookies contain no Mexican ingredients and actually originated in Europe. It is theorized that they were brought to Mexico by European nuns, which is where the name comes from. They are also called Russian Tea Cakes because they have also been enjoyed in Russia. Somewhere along the lines they were incorporated into wedding tradition in the U.S., but yes folks, these cookies are not Mexican. Call them what you like, I’m going to devour them. By the way, pro tip– don’t inhale while eating these cookies. Powdered sugar tastes better on the tongue, not in the lungs.
Next time I see you fine folks will be on Christmas, so have an awesome day! On the 25th, I’ve got a glittery-gold sweet New Years dessert for you. Bye bye!
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup finely chopped pecans (a food processor works great for this)
- 1 cup powdered sugar for rolling
- Place the butter, ½ cup powdered sugar, vanilla, flour, salt, and pecans in a large bowl. Mix until it comes together into a ball. Chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour to firm up.
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
- Form half of the dough into 1-inch balls and place on the lined cookie sheets, placing them about 1 inch apart. The cookies spread very slightly when they bake. Bake until the balls are browned on the bottom, but not on the top, about 12-14 minutes.
- Set the cookies aside to cool for about 5 minutes. Place the 1 cup powdered sugar for rolling in a bowl. Roll the warm cookie balls in the powdered sugar, then place on a large plate or another cookie sheet.
- Repeat this process with the remaining dough– forming the the dough into balls, baking them, then rolling them in the powdered sugar while still warm. Allow all of the cookies to cool completely, then roll in the powdered sugar once again. Devour immediately or store in an airtight container for up to a week at room temperature.