Posts Tagged ‘Candy Cane Cookies’

When I consider all my favourite Christmas cookie recipes, they all have nuts. Just a few tablespoons of almonds, walnuts, or pecans transforms a pretty regular cookie into something absolutely decadent. These candy canes are my mother’s favourite, and she has been known to hide them from my sister’s friends who devour them.

My grandmother Ford had the brilliant idea of transforming almond crescents into candy canes. Instead of rolling them into the traditional half-moons, she rolled them into candy-canes and painted them with all colours of stripes. These cookies are so much fun to eat, and delicious too with their nutty aroma and hint of cinnamon. Candy canes are slightly finicky to make – rolling the dough into candy canes requires a light and persistent roller, and they break easily when you cover them in the cinnamon sugar – but worth every second of effort!

I should add that all these beautiful cookies were a family effort – my sister mixed the dough and my mother was the chief Candy Cane roller.

Candy Cane Cookies
(makes about 4-5 dozen cookies)
1 cup butter
1/3 cup berry sugar
2/3 cup finely ground almonds*
1 1/2 cup flour
1/4 tsp salt
Red and green food dye
1/2 cup berry sugar**
2 tsp cinnamon
Cream the butter and sugar together. Mix in the almonds, salt, and flour, kneading as necessary to incorporate all the flour. Refrigerate the dough until chilled thoroughly (about 1 hour).

Preheat oven to 325 F. On a clean counter, roll a small amount of dough into a thick pencil-width, between 2.5- to 3-inch long shape. Fold the top quarter of the dough down to form the candy cane’s hook.  Transfer to a baking sheet, keeping cookies at least one-inch apart.  With toothpicks, paint the candy canes with stripes using red and green food dye.

Bake the cookies for 14-16 minutes, until the edges just begin to turn golden brown.  Allow to cool slightly on the tray, before carefully rolling them individually in the cinnamon and sugar mixture. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Bon appetit!
– Catherine
*You can buy ground almonds, but they tend to stale quickly. For a fresher taste, you can grind blanched almonds pieces either by hand or in a food processor.

**Berry sugar is super fine granulated sugar, often used to make jam. If you can’t find it , regular white sugar works just fine.

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