There is something very magical about Christmas cookies. In my family, they come out at the end of November for our annual Christmas tree chopping expedition and are retired around the beginning of January, allowing us a magical month of sugary delight that remains unspoiled by year-round availability.

As a kid, I was, of course, far more interested in seeing how much sugar cookie dough I could eat when my mom wasn’t looking than I was in baking, but now I enjoy baking them even more. This recipe of my mom’s is one of my all-time favorites, and it’s really easy to make. Plus, it has a few redeeming features like fruit (jam) and protein (an egg) to offset the necessary and delicious butter and sugar.



  Ingredients
 
Cookie  
1 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg yolk
1 teaspon vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
jam (any flavor) 
 
 
Glaze
  1/2 cup powdered sugar mixed with 1 Tablespoon water   
 
Instructions
 

1. Beat butter and sugar until the mixture is creamed well. Beat in the egg yolk & vanilla. Mix all dry ingredients in gradually.                      

2. Shape dough into ropes about 3/4 inch in diameter and as long as your baking sheets; place them about 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets. With the side of your little finger (or a wooden spoon handle) press a long groove down the center of each rope. Bake at 375° for 10 minutes.    

3. Remove from oven and spoon jam into the grooves. Return to oven for 5  to 10 minutes or until firm and light golden brown. While hot, drizzle with powdered sugar mixture.  Cut at a 45° angle into 1 inch lengths. Let cool briefly on sheets, transfer to racks, and let cool completely. Makes 4 dozen (Just enough for meee!!)

Tip:  if you like them a bit softer, cook only five minutes the second time. Cook the full ten minutes the second time if you’d like a crispier cookie.

Drooling yet?