Twenty-Five Days of Cookies: Nutmeg Bites

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Christmas is twenty-one days (gulp) away and what better way is there to countdown to the big event than to feature a cookie recipe each day? Think of it as a cookie recipe advent calendar. And to fill that advent calendar I’m featuring twenty five of my favorite holiday cookie recipes that are sure to fill your holidays with cheer. Bake them to fill your cookie trays, bring them to a cookie swap or eat them yourself; they are guaranteed to bring about holiday joy. And if you love baking as much as I do, making them is a fun filled gift unto itself. Enjoy!

I love these little cookies from King Arthur Flour because they are a bit different than your usual holiday spiced cookies. Whereas most cookies are rich with brown sugar, cinnamon and ginger, the only spice these cookies contain is nutmeg. The nutmeg makes them spicy yet light but the rum icing provides the punch that makes these cookies exciting. If possible, use freshly ground nutmeg. You will notice a difference. And as an added bonus you can make the dough ahead of time and chill it until you are ready to bake them.

NUTMEG BITES

For the cookie dough:

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla

For the rum icing:

1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
3 tablespoons rum

  • Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine all of the ingredients. Using an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat  until a soft, smooth dough forms.
  • Wrap and chill the dough for 1 hour. Towards the end of the chill time, preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Drop tablespoon-sized dough balls onto your baking sheet.
  • Bake the cookies for 8 to 10 minutes. The edges will be slightly browned and the cookies will be round and domed.
  • Cool the cookies completely.
  • Prepare the icing by blending the softened butter and confectioners’ sugar.
  • Add rum one tablespoon at a time until you have a spreadable icing.
  • Top each cookie with a dollop of icing and a dash of nutmeg.

Yield: Approximately 3 to 4 dozen cookies.

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