Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Spring Spritz Cookies

I love cookies ...

I'll admit that I bake more cookies during the Christmas season, but I bake them pretty much all year long, as the mood strikes. Around here, most evenings are cool, even in the summer, so that's a perfect time to send a tray or two of cookies to the oven.

Spritz cookies are one of my favorites. Not only do I like the flavor and texture, but they're also pretty, and fun to make.

Downside is that you need a cookie press. I suppose you could also use a pastry bag, but a cookie press has a few advantages. Like, it's easier.

Also, with some presses, you can get extra disks to make even more cookie shapes. I recently received the spring disk set from OXO and had some fun with it. I already had the cookie press, which I wrote about in my holiday gift, guide, and I recently bought the fall disk set. I'm pretty sure that if they come up with more disks, I'll buy them.

The spring set included a rose, a flower bouquet, two hearts, a shamrock, a cherry blossom, and the word "love." My favorite was the flower bouquet, maybe because it was so intricate, but the rest were also really nice. Needless to say, the shamrock would look nice tinted green for St. Patrick's day.

As soon as the disks showed up, I ripped 'em open and started making cookies.

Hey, I needed them for a party.

Rather than re-invent the wheel, I decided to use a recipe from OXO's website. I really liked this one, because it wasn't just butter - it also had cream cheese. The cheese gave these cookies a richness that I loved.

Cream Cheese Spritz Cookies
Recipe by OXO

Makes about 8 dozen cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cold
3 ounces brick cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together cubed butter and cream cheese. Add sugar and egg yolk, beating until light and fluffy. Mix in vanilla.

In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, salt and cinnamon. Gradually add the flour mixture, beating until well incorporated.

Place dough in Cookie Press with desired disk. Press dough out onto an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until the cookies are golden brown on the edges. Rotate baking sheet halfway through baking time.

Disclosure: I received the spring disk set from OXO at my requested, but I was ready to purchase it because I knew I wanted it.