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Ask DSM Readers: What’s Your Favorite Christmas Cookie?

by Tara Kuczykowski on December 2, 2010 · 39 comments

Pizzelles Recipe

Every week I'll pose a question for you to share your experiences and tips. If you have a question that you'd like me to post, I'd love to hear from you!

My husband has been begging me to make pizzelles this Christmas, and I finally bought a pizzelle maker and gave them a try. The results were delicious! I shared more about the history and flexibility of this Italian cookie over at my new blog, Unsophisticook, along with a fabulous pizzelle recipe.

Christmas baking season is upon us, and I'd love to know what your favorite cookie is as well!

What's your favorite Christmas cookie? Is it a traditional recipe or  something unexpected? Do you enjoy baking? Do you give cookies as gifts, serve them at parties or just enjoy them with your family?

Join the discussion -- add your two cents to previous Ask DSM Readers questions too!

{ 39 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Michelle December 2, 2010 at 2:48 pm

Gosh we LOVE Christmas cookies in our house. I'd be hard pressed to list a favorite though. My grandmother baked her way through the Great Depression and started a bakery to feed her family of 5. I have her rolling pin and dough board. My grandmother continued the tradition and I still have her Kitchen Aid mixer! When we were little, my grandparents bought us a cookie cutter every year for Christmas to complete the collections their parents started. I have cookie cutters from the 1930's! Each year, I pull out the old family recipes and the old family items and we make cookies. Last year, we invited my children's friends and we had so much fun. I was amazed how many teen girls have no idea about baking! Of course, with 6 children of my own, there are never many leftovers. We tend to eat what we make. We do save some for our annual Christmas caroling event. We take the kids and their friends caroling around our neighborhood and come back to our house for Christmas movies, cookies, and hot cocoa.

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2 Tara Kuczykowski December 2, 2010 at 4:55 pm

Aww, I love to hear stuff like that, Michelle! I have my grandmother's flour sifter and cake comb. Most people probably don't even know what a cake comb is, but it makes me smile every time I cut into a cake with one.

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3 Hana December 2, 2010 at 8:04 pm

Very cute and memorable. Loved hearing that story. :o) Happy cookies to you!

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4 Heather December 2, 2010 at 10:09 pm

My eyes are welling with tears after reading that! I don't have any baking tools from my grandmothers, but I know they were great bakers and I'm proud to carry on that tradition! BTW, what is a cake comb????

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5 Tara Kuczykowski December 2, 2010 at 11:49 pm

Here's a pic of one: http://www.tias.com/14188/PictPage/3923807721.html You just press it into the cake to cut it, and it's great for really moist cakes because it won't smash them like a knife often can.

I'm so glad to hear you're carrying on the tradition!!!

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6 deb December 2, 2010 at 2:49 pm

Kiss filled snowballs....very much like a Hershey Kiss filled Mexican Wedding cake...yummy!!!!

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7 Cathy Kramer December 2, 2010 at 3:05 pm

Peanut butter kisses!

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8 Kelley December 2, 2010 at 3:28 pm

My Grandmother's Prune Horns. OMG, they are soooo good. My Aunt carries on the tradition now. I also love my Aunt's Crescents. I could go for some of those right now! :-)

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9 tanja c December 2, 2010 at 3:37 pm

chunky peppermint fudge dream cookies...hmm they are so good

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10 Michelle December 2, 2010 at 3:42 pm

Definitely Danish Butter Cookies. They don't have to be homemade, the ones that come in the blue tin. Love them!

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11 amanda December 2, 2010 at 3:44 pm

We are also a pizelle-eating family. If you do like the anise ones, get the pure anise oil from Mr. Meatball in Columbus. My husband's family is Italian and this makes the pizelles taste "like Noni's" to my husband. Plus, I got a bottle when we were up for Christmas several years ago and I'm still using it- a little goes a long way! The family recipe is very similar to yours, also.

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12 KimH December 2, 2010 at 3:51 pm

I love pizelles too and have an iron but have yet to make them. maybe this year I'll do it!!
My favorite Christmas cookie isnt a cookie at all.. Its a piece of candy called Divinity.. I would say anise pizelles come second.. Yum!

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13 Stephanie December 2, 2010 at 3:55 pm

We have a Family Cookie Exchange each year...so we bring a 1/2 doz for each family member and leave with 8 kinds...some of the favorites are Santa Snickers, Candy Canes, cornflake wreaths, buckeyes, PB Blossoms, Oreo Truffles...and the list goes on and on.

On candy day ...my sister and I make Cashew Brittle, Caramels, Cinn Candy, and Marshmallows...one of our favorites are Caramel Filled Pizelles (sandwich 2 together with caramel inbetween)...they are great to lay on your cup of coffee and have the caramel melt then drip, drink, and enjoy!!!!

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14 Sarah December 2, 2010 at 3:55 pm
15 Hana December 2, 2010 at 10:03 pm

Thanks for posting this, Sarah.
Arrrgh. You made me use up almost 2 hours peeking at your recommendation, and reading all the reviews, and peeking at similar recipes. Ha ha. :o) I must try making them perhaps for Christmas.

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16 Annemarie December 2, 2010 at 4:04 pm

Rainbow cookies! I guess they are an everyday cookie in some areas, but they are a lot of work, so we make them at Christmas. They are made with almond paste and are delicious! You can find them at any good Italian bakery!

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17 Annisa December 2, 2010 at 4:11 pm

I love a good gingerbread cookie during the holidays!

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18 Wendy December 2, 2010 at 4:15 pm

Snickerdoodles. Everyone also likes the Snickers cookies I make (I dont!). They are basically peanut butter cookies with a mini Snicker stuffed inside.

My husband has his grandmothers pizzelle maker but I've never made or had them!

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19 Tara Kuczykowski December 2, 2010 at 4:57 pm

Aww, Snickerdoodles were my grandmother's specialty. I need to find a good recipe for them. I don't think I've ever made them!

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20 RayAnne December 2, 2010 at 4:45 pm

My favorite cookies to bake from scratch is Snickerdoodles. I started baking them in 7th grade when I got the recipe from my home ec class... Ever since then it's been my family's favorite Christmas cookie. I love when they come out of the oven all nice and fluffy with cinnamon and sugar =)

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21 Steve Zussino December 2, 2010 at 4:46 pm

As an italian, I have to say I also enjoy pizelle around the holidays.

Steven

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22 Kay December 2, 2010 at 4:47 pm

Thumbprints, and forget the jelly in the middle, I want sugary icing! LOL

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23 Shelley December 2, 2010 at 4:47 pm

I love shortbread cookies.

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24 Heather December 2, 2010 at 5:13 pm
25 Jan December 2, 2010 at 5:16 pm

I love the huge kitchen sink cookies! The ones with the Christmas M&M's, white chocolate chunks, pecans, etc. The more the merrier in these!

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26 Stefanie December 2, 2010 at 5:19 pm

The ones with powdered sugar and pecans.

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27 Vickie December 2, 2010 at 5:41 pm

Yum...you girls are making me salivate...we love cookies...year round (homemade)...hard to name a favorite...we have many family traditional cookies/candies/cakes...most old timey southern...but, I am always looking to update all my collections...and, make one or two new ones every year.
Some of my best memories are cooking/baking with my grandma and mom...its so important to pass on not only the tradition but the love.

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28 Jan M. December 2, 2010 at 6:29 pm

We always make peanut butter pinwheels at Christmas time. They are peanut butter cookie dough rolled out and spread with melted chocolate chips. Then roll up and slice. They are delicious!

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29 Christine Smyth December 2, 2010 at 7:34 pm

Worked for me, thanks so much for the post!

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30 Christine Smyth December 2, 2010 at 7:37 pm

opps, wrong previous post..

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31 Linda B December 2, 2010 at 8:07 pm

We love sugar cookies. They can be eaten plain or you can decorate them. Making them is a great activity for you and the kids.

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32 Colleen December 2, 2010 at 10:34 pm

My fave is nut tossies and kiffles. They are Pennsylvania Dutch, I believe. My grandmother had them every Christmas, and I will be missing her terribly this year. She passed away in March :(

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33 Tara Kuczykowski December 2, 2010 at 11:51 pm

I'm sorry to hear that, Colleen. I hope you have the recipes so you can make a batch in her honor this year!

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34 Angie December 2, 2010 at 11:27 pm

One side of the family is Italian so pizzelles were always a part of the holidays (up until sometime in the 1980's my Grandma made them one by one with a HEAVY iron over the furnace!) She made them along with mexican wedding cakes, sugar cookies, thumbprints and refrigerator cookies (she flavored them with either orange or almond). When I think of Christmas, those are the cookies I think about. My Grandma is now 90, has Alzheimers and lives 1000 miles away so I try to carry on the tradition and make some of these cookies for my kids. About 10 years ago I had her write down some her recipes, I am so glad I did.

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35 Tara Kuczykowski December 2, 2010 at 11:57 pm

That is awesome that you had the foresight to get the recipes! I wish I had thought of that kind of stuff when I was younger. My great-grandmother was a fabulous cook and made strudel that were out of this world. I have her recipe, but it's not very precise and I don't know the exact steps.

She passed away at 93 when I was only 7 though, and obviously I wasn't thinking about recipes so much at that age. If I could have a conversation with any person right now, I think it would be her. She came to the U.S. from Hungary at the age of 16 and never saw her family again -- pretty amazing to think about now.

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36 Sandi Prather December 3, 2010 at 9:03 am

At my house the whole family expects my great-great grandmothers tea cakes at Christmas time. They are like a sugar cookie except a bit lighter and with a hint of lemon. I use the lemon zest and when you put them in your mouth there is this delightful sensation of a melt away cookie with a fresh lemon aftertaste. They win hands down at my house! The recipe comes from the 1800's

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37 Ashlee December 3, 2010 at 11:20 am

My favorite cookies are sandtarts. Oh they are so delicious!

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38 Deb December 3, 2010 at 11:32 am

I love the simplicity of Snickerdoodles...an old timey favorite. Not a cookie, but I make some heavenly cashew brittle-i th microwave no less! Man, is it good!

Here's another fun thing with cookies-
each year our office has a Cookie & Wassail Day-it's this coming Monday, as a matter of fact!
Our faithful bakers bring in their fabulous Christmas cookies for all to enjoy, accompanied by warm spiced wassail I keep toasty is the crockpot! We serve in the lobby and even the FedEx and cleaning folks join in the yummy fun!

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39 Leigh S. December 9, 2010 at 9:04 am

I'm a sucker for chocolate. Love my mom's chocolate cookies with butterscotch chips. Also love my MIL's haystacks and rum balls (not technically cookies, I guess).

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