Mexican wedding cookies {101 Days of Christmas}

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These little cookies go by many names—Russian tea cakes, Mexican wedding cookies, walnut snowballs, etc. The Mexican version, also called polvoróns, are made with finely chopped pecans, and the result is a soft, crumbly cookie. My grandmother always made walnut snowballs when I was little, but the girls and I decided to try this version to take as…

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Dutch speculaas {101 Days of Christmas}

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Dutch speculaas are thin, crisp cookies flavored much like German pfeffernüsse. They're typically baked for St. Nicholas' Day on December 5th or 6th and are, traditionally, stamped with images from the life of St. Nicholas on the front.  It turns out that I really like traditional Christmas cookies from this part of Europe, with their strong spices and unique textures! I…

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Austrian kipferl {101 Days of Christmas}

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Ancestor to the croissant, kipferl cookies are fragile crescent-shaped cookies that literally melt in your mouth. Made from ground almonds, they have the slightest hint of almond flavor and a sweet vanilla sugar coating. These cookies are so good that my husband fought over the last cookie of both batches I made. Despite their "fancy" shape, they're…

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German pfeffernüsse {101 Days of Christmas}

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Pfeffernüsse, aka pepper nuts, are a traditional German cookie featuring aromatic spices and a sweet icing. Like any good cookie recipe, there are dozens and dozens of variations of the spices and ingredients used, but all bakers agree that the result is a spicy, dry cookie that is small enough to grab by the handful! As…

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Dulce de leche-filled alfajores {101 Days of Christmas}

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Similar to the French macaron, alfajores are a South American treat. While the specifics vary by region and country, the basic idea is a sandwich cookie with a sweet filling in the middle. This version incorporates a rich dulce de leche between two melt-in-your-mouth cornstarch cookies! These cookies are easy to make, using just a few ingredients…

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Quick & easy springerle cookies {101 Days of Christmas}

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Springerle are a flat, white, crispy cookie traditionally made in Germany, Bavaria or Austria. The designs are added before baking using a carved springerle rolling pin or flat mold. Traditional springerle are made from just eggs, confectioners sugar' and flour and flavored by sprinkling a surface with anise seed and placing the cookies on top for 24…

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