Yes, I know the posts are getting a little further apart lately, but things are hectic- to say the least! I have actually been baking and cooking a lot lately, but as much as I would like to, there just don't seem to be enough hours in the day to get everything documented and photographed. I am catering a few parties this weekend which means I have a lot of assorted bite size desserts to make between now and Friday. This morning I made Mexican wedding Cake Cookies, they are almost like a shortbread, buttery and flavored with toasted pecans, cinnamon and vanilla; they are sometimes called pecan balls or Russian tea cakes.
I use a special powdered sugar called Snow White sugar for sprinkling the cookies after they bake, I get it in 25 pound bags for the restaurant, but you can get it in a one pound bag from King Arthur Flour. What's great about this sugar is it doesn't really melt so the cookies stay Snow White-- just as the name says. I used to make them with regular powdered sugar, so if that's all you have that will work as well, just sift some fresh sugar over cookies before serving if you are making them ahead. I also mix a few sprinkles of cinnamon with the powdered sugar. To make the balls, I first flatten out the dough a bit with my hands and cut it into equal portions with a knife, this makes them all even and uniform which for OCD girl (me), it's very important they all look the same. Watch the cookies carefully while in the oven, the bottoms should be just golden brown while the tops will be fairly pale.
MEXICAN WEDDING CAKE COOKIES
1 lb unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups toasted pecans, chopped
Extra powdered sugar or snow white sugar and cinnamon for coating.
1. In a large bowl beat butter with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add sugar and continue to beat until well incorporated. Add vanilla and mix well.
2. Add flour, mix until just combined, then add toasted pecans. Place dough in plastic wrap and flatten into a disk. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or until cold.
Pre-heat oven to 350F
3. Make 1 1/2" balls, place on greased cookie sheet 1/2" apart and bake about 15 minutes or until bottoms are lightly golden. Remove from oven and cool cookies slightly.
4. In a medium bowl mix 3 cups powdered sugar or snow white sugar and sprinkle with about 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon. Roll cookies until covered with sugar then set aside to cool completely. If making the cookies ahead of time, I sprinkle with additional powdered sugar before serving.