Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Great Cookie To Make With Kids: Russian Teacakes aka Snowballs

I've been making this recipe with my mom since I can remember; it's kind of our Christmas tradition. I have many fond memories of making these cookies.

At any rate, the teacakes are not only one of the easiest things I've ever baked, but are also very kid friendly. There are many jobs kids can participate in while making these; measuring ingredients, rolling the dough into balls, and covering them in confectionery sugar when they come out of the oven. The best part is, however, is that there are no eggs in this recipe, so mom's don't have to worry about their kids taking a little nibble of the dough or licking their fingers.

Russian Teacakes
Makes approximately four dozen cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 confectionery sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour, sifted
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup finally chopped (walnuts) nuts (optional, to be stirred in last)
extra confectionery sugar for rolling

Sift the dry ingredients (flour, salt) together and set them aside.

Cream the butter, sugar and vanilla together.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and stir together.

Once the mixture starts coming together, use your hands and form a ball with the dough.

Refrigerate the dough until firm (usually 30 minutes to 1 hour). Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Form once inch balls with the dough by rolling them in the palm of your hand.

Place the cookies on an ungreased cookie sheet quite close together (they don't really spread much).

Bake for approximately 10 minutes. I can tell they are cooked with they start to slightly crack at the top.

Cool for a few minutes, but while still warm, roll all the cookies in confectionery sugar. After rolling all the cookies once, roll them for a second time. Then allow them to cool completely before storing.

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