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Friday, December 23, 2011

Nonna Cornaccio's Butter Spritz Cookies

My sweet Nonna Cornaccio was as sweet and gentle as these buttery sweet cookies and she always had a tin of them in her kitchen for when her grandchildren came to visit. My Nonna-- who was actually my bisnonna --great grandmother-- was from Naples, Italy and came to NJ in the early 1900's and even though she lived here for many years she held onto her thick Italian accent until the day she died, I can still hear her telling me, "Anna, you pray to Sainta Antony if you lose a somting he will get it fo you, no?",  as she handed me a mini glow in the dark statue of Saint Anthony, the saint of lost causes my own name sake : )  My Nonna was always wearing a home-sewn apron -- I inherited 2 of them-- and she was about as wide as she was tall at just over 4 feet tall. But what I remember most about her was her sweet soft hugs and yummy cookies she always had on hand for us!
~My sweet Nonna Cornaccio with her son, my great Uncle Angelo~
I will admit spritz cookies can be a bit of a pain at first but once you get them going you can whip out several dozen in a matter of minutes. This video was very helpful so if you are new to spritz cookies or have not made them in a while which was my case I would highly recommend watching this first: Butter Spritz Cookie Tutorial. Also note that this dough must be used at room temp so plan on using it right away or make ahead and then bring back to room temp.
6 cups all purpose flour
6 teaspoons baking powder
6 eggs
6 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups sugar
1 pound butter (4 sticks) room temp
maraschino cherries red and or green (2 tubs)
Tools: cookie press w/ rosette disk
Preheat oven to 350
You can do this recipe in a Kitchen Aid carefully and it will just fit or use a hand mixer and a large bowl.
Cream butter & sugar well.
Add eggs and vanilla and mix well.
Slowly add flour and baking powder mixing on med/low until well incorporated.
Fill the press and form cookies on a clean sheet pan, add a cherry in the middle of each cookie and bake for 8-12 minutes or just until the bottoms are starting to lightly brown but the rest of the cookie is still white.
Notes: This dough must be used at room temp, do not refrigerate. Use an un-greased sheet pan with no foil or parchment for ease with forming the cookies. Wipe the press off in between every few cookies for easy forming of cookies. Just accept that the first 1-2 cookies pressed through will not be so perfect but after that they will be alright.


Andrea the Kitchen Witch said...

Ann these are beautiful!! They remind me of my childhood Christmases, my mom or Grandma always made spritz cookies with cherry centers. We might have to make these on Christmas day :) Merry Christmas to you and your family!!

Simona said...

You definitely were on a roll today in terms of baking cookies. They look lovely!