Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Little Red Hen Christmas Cookies: Famiy Traditions

Christmas Cookie Recipe with Family Tradition
The reason I called this Little Red Hen cookies is because I'm feeling a little naughty selfish possessive of the pecans because they cost twice as much as most other nuts right now and my little pecan tree has only produced three pecans. Listen (teacher stance here - one hand on hip, other hand wagging pointy finger), I bought the ingredients, made the dough, and cleaned up the kitchen. So I'm going to hide a few cookies for myself in the rooster jar. I think I'll eat them for breakfast if I can get up before anyone else. Sarah prefers no extra pecans or she could have some. Now the grandkids can dip into the Santa cookie jar and won't know about the stash in the rooster jar with the extra pecan covered in cinnamon/sugar mixture. Opps, I wonder if the kids will Stumble around Upon this. Guess the cookies are good because Santa has never ever left any crumbs.

I do not recommend any substitutions. My husband is diabetic and wanted me to substitute artificial sweetener for real sugar. Being tight thrifty, he wanted me to substitute margarine for butter and almonds for pecans. I said, "Absolutely not; it won't be the same cookie. This is my mother's very special secret recipe {she'd be proud of me blogging and sharing this now} and no substitutions are allowed." So I made him some healthy cookies sweetened with apple juice concentrate so he wouldn't feel unloved.


1 pound butter, softened
2 1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs well beaten
1 T white Karo syrup (refrigerate after opening)
5 cups shifted flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup chopped pecans
2 tsp vanilla

1. Cream butter; add sugar and vanilla then cream thoroughly.
2. Beat eggs well. Add Karo to eggs and add to first mixture.
3. Sift flour with soda and add.
4. Mix in chopped pecans.
5. Roll into rolls and wrap in waxed paper or Cling Wrap and refrigerate for several hours before rolling. Dough can also be frozen and saved for another occasion like making Valentine hearts.
6. Sprinkle flour on counter surface and on rolling pin. Roll thinly and cut with cookie cutters dipped in flour.
7. Sprinkle with colored sugars or with a sugar/cinnamon mixture. Pecan halves are especially good baked in the center.
8. Bake on cookie sheets lightly sprayed with a vegetable non-stick spray in oven 350 degrees for 8 minutes. Makes 12 dozen cookies if dough is cut to 1/8 inch thickness. LOL. I  double the recipe, as shown in photo, and freeze some. To save time, cookies can be made in circles by cutting rolls rather than rolling dough and cutting shapes.

The most fun party in my Kindergarten class was when a grandmother brought huge sugar cookies and let the children decorate them with icing, M&Ms, raisins, sprinkles, gum drops, licorice, etc. They were spectacular looking and tasted wonderful. The children had so much fun participating in decorating the cookies and licking the icing smeared on the floor around their mouths that it wouldn't have mattered if the recipe tasted good or not. Of course, anything involving icing is best done outdoors.

I've included Dan's favorite sugar-free cookie. The smell of cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg fill the house making you not care that it is sugar-free.


1 cup blueberries (or blackberries coated in sugar free substitute)
1 large egg white
1 can frozen unsweetened apple juice concentrate
1 mashed banana (optional)
4 T margarine or butter, softened
2 cups quick-cooking rolled oats
2 cups flour (I use half wheat and half white flour)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 t nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)

1. Mix egg white with apple juice that is room temperature or the egg will scramble. Add butter.
2. Add flour, soda, and spices and mix well.
3. Add a little more apple juice if more moisture is needed or a mashed banana
4.Roll mixture around a blueberry or blackberry forming a ball with berry hidden. If too sticky, coat hands with flour before rolling dough into ball or add more flour to mixture.
5.Place on cookie sheet that has been sprayed with nonstick vegetable spray. Bake 350 for 10 minutes or until lightly brown.

If you like a crunchier cookie, omit berries, but it will be a delightful moist surprise when someone bites into the cookie and tastes the berry.

There are only two food groups:
One that you cover with cheese
and one that you cover with chocolate.

Would you like a glimpse into Kindergarten? See Kindergarten: Tattle-Tales, Tools, Tactics, Triumphs and Tasty Treats for Teachers and Parents. Moms of Preschoolers - let Mommy with Selective Memory and me help save your sanity, one project at a time with the child development explanations with The Happy Mommy Handbook: The Ultimate How-to Guide on Keeping Your Toddlers and Preschoolers Busy, Out of Trouble and Motivated to Learn. Both are bestsellers and also available on Barnes & Noble and Kobo. The ebooks are only $3.99.

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  1. Both versions sound delicious. Thanks for the recipes.

  2. loving this recipe!!!! can't wait to create! sending holiday hugs from your newest follower!!!

  3. Thanks for sharing the family secrets with us! :o) (Visiting from Living Life Intentionally Linky Party.)

  4. Ooh so excited to see a healthy recipe. Goes great with my new year's resolution =) Thanks for linking up to TGIF. Happy New Year,
    Beth =-)

    1. Beth - Thank you! Love your amazing blog and linky parties. Have a wonderful Christmas season.

  5. Thanks for linking in to Food on Friday: Christmas. We are now getting a great collection of Christmas ideas.

    I am now signed up to follow you. A follow back to Carole's Chatter would be wonderful – or are you already following? Cheers

  6. OOh, I see you are already following - thank you so much. Have a super day.

  7. Your cookie look just delicious!


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