Sunday, December 12, 2010

Peppermint Meltaway Cookies

These little cookies will melt in your mouth - and they could hardly be any easier to make. :) I discovered this recipe last year in the magazine Simple and Delicious, and that's exactly what it is - very simple, and VERY delicious!  And while I usually adjust recipes to suit my tastes, I'm sharing this recipe just as I found it, because it is perfect the way it is.  :) 

Note: Because of the lighting in my kitchen, the cookies took on a yellow tint in my photo - but in "real life," they are a beautiful white cookie with just a hint of light golden brown around the bottom edges.  You don't want to overbake these guys... they'll lose their "melt-in-your-mouth" appeal. :)
Merry Christmas!

1 cup butter, softened (I prefer salted butter in this recipe)
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch

2 tablespoons butter, softened
1-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
1/2 cup crushed peppermint candies

In a small bowl, cream butter and confectioners' sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in extract. Combine flour and cornstarch; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. 

Shape into 1-in. balls.  (Note: Humidity can change the consistency of these cookies... if they seem too sticky to handle, stir in more flour, a few tablespoons at a time, just until the dough can be lightly rolled into balls.  It should still be soft, but not sticky.)  Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 10-12 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool.

In a small bowl, beat butter until fluffy. Add the confectioners’ sugar, milk, extract and food coloring if desired; beat until smooth. Spread over cooled cookies; sprinkle with crushed candies.  Store in an airtight container when frosting has set.   For best results, store with a sheet of waxed paper in between the layers of cookies. :)  Yield: 3-1/2 dozen.

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