Classic Christmas Cut Outs

Classic Christmas Cut-Outs

This is a recipe that was handed down from my Grandmother. I remember growing up making these and they were always the first cookies to disappear from the cookie trays that my mother made. And now when I make them the same holds true.

1 cup shortening (I prefer to use 1/2 butter flavor and 1/2 original Crisco)
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon soda
2 eggs
3 cups all purpose flour
4 Tablespoons of heavy cream

Cream together shortening, sugar, salt, baking powder and soda. Mix in the eggs unitl combined with sugar mixture. Gradually stir in flour-mix slightly. Scrape down sides of your mixing bowl. Add cream and continue to mix until cookie dough comes together-should only take a minute or so. Divide dough in 3. On a generously floured surface roll the first batch to desired thickness and cut with your favorite Christmas shapes. Continue with additional dough.

Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown around the edges.

Cool and decorate as desired.

This dough also works well to make a filled cookie. Follow steps above except cut into 2-3 inch circles. Add 1/2 teaspoon of your favorite filling to the center of the circles, fold over dough and seal edges.

Suggestion for filling for cookies:

Cranberry orange-great way to use up your left over cranberry sauce from the holidays. Take remaining cranberry sauce add some fresh orange zest and a little orange extract and use to fill cookies. Yum!

By Melissa Jaskowski