The classic candy-cane flavor of red and white peppermints meets the rich, buttery goodness of walnut shortbread in these crunchy, delectable gems.
|1||cup||unsalted butter, softened|
|1 1/2||cups||sifted powdered sugar, divided|
|2-1/2||cups||sifted unbleached all-purpose flour|
|1/2||cup||finely chopped walnuts|
|1/2||cup||finely crushed peppermint candies|
|1||cup||sifted powdered sugar, divided|
Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a medium bowl, use an electric mixer to cream together the butter, ½ cup of the powdered sugar, vanilla, and the peppermint extract.
- Reduce the speed to low and gradually add the sifted flour and nuts.
- Wrap dough in plastic and chill while preparing the filling.
- In a small bowl, combine the crushed peppermints with 1/2 cup of the powdered sugar. Set aside.
- In a separate small bowl, combine the cream cheese with milk.
- Gradually add the remaining 1/2 cup powdered sugar and 3 tablespoons of the crushed peppermint-sugar mixture. Tint the filling with a drop of red food coloring, if desired.
- Remove the cookie dough from the fridge and shape it into teaspoon-sized balls.
- Create a deep well in the center of each and fill with a heaping 1/4 teaspoon of filling.
- Press with your fingers to completely seal the dough over the filling. Place the cookies a few inches apart on ungreased baking sheets.
- Bake for 12 to 15 minutes until cookies just begin to turn golden brown.
- Remove from the oven set aside until just cool enough to handle.
- Roll the warm cookies in the remaining peppermint-sugar mixture; cool thoroughly, then roll again in the peppermint-sugar mixture to form an even coating.
- Store, tightly covered, at room temperature for up to 1 week.
by Baking Expert, Catherine Christensen.