Eggnog Shortbread by Cleo Coyle

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Eggnog is a holiday taste that my husband and I look forward to enjoying every year. While Marc drinks it straight from the fridge, I prefer mine in a comfortingly warm latte. So, I thought, why not put the flavor in a cookie?





Cleo Coyle writes two
bestselling mystery
 series with her husband.
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Marc pulls no punches when it comes to telling me when a recipe is not working, but he completely flipped over these. 

The dough alone is redolent with that creamy-sweet, slightly spicy eggnoggy fragrance (yes, I made up the word eggnoggy). As they bake, nutmeg and vanilla permeate the air with the quintessential aroma of your classic Bing Crosby-Danny Kaye Christmas. 

BTW: If you’ve never seen the legendary holiday film in which these gifted guys star, it’s a real pleasure. Click the arrow in the window below to hear Bing Crosby, Rosemary Clooney, Danny Kaye, and Vera-Ellen sing "Snow," a 4-part harmony song from the movie White Christmas... 



☕  ☕  ☕ 


Video courtesy YouTube.com
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This recipe can be 
made two ways: 

(1) For an easy refrigerator cookie, simply roll it into a thick, soft log, chill, slice, and bake.

(2) For a more elaborate holiday cookie tray, make a rolled and shaped cookie by chilling the dough in thick discs, then rolling it out, and using your favorite cookie cutters. 

I’ve kept the composition of this cookie dough very buttery so that a liberal addition of flour when rolling will not toughen the cookie on you.

You can serve these cookies plain or with the polished finish of my Eggnog Glaze (recipe below), which adds yet another layer of eggnog flavor. Finally, a dusting of my Nutmeg Sugar mimics the barista’s finish to an eggnog latte with a sprinkling of that classic holiday spice.






Cleo's Eggnog 
Shortbread Cookies

To download a free PDF of this 
recipe that you can print, save,
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☕ Cleo Coyle's
Eggnog Shortbread Cookies


YIELDS: About 4 dozen cookies of 2-inches in diameter; smaller size cookies will yield more; larger will yield less.

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter
3/4 c. sugar
1/2 cup eggnog
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla
2-1/2 c flour, sifted (plus extra for rolling)
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking powder
Eggnog Glaze (optional, see recipe below)
Nutmeg Sugar (optional, see recipe below)



(1) One bowl mixing method: First cream butter and sugar, and then measure in eggnog, egg, vanilla, nutmeg, sifted flour, and baking powder. Mix until a smooth dough forms, but do not over mix or you will develop the gluten in your dough which will make your cookies tough instead of tender.

(2) Chill it, baby: You have two options for this step: OPTION (A) – Easy Refrigerator Cookies: For this version, simply roll the dough into a thick log. Chill it several hours, until somewhat firm (it will still be a bit soft because of the high butter content), then roll the log in granulated sugar and slice up.


Arrange cookie dough slices on a baking sheet that’s been lined, greased, or coated with cooking spray to prevent sticking. Using the bottom of a glass or a spatula, flatten the cookie dough rounds into circles of about 2-inches in diameter. Because the dough is soft, the cookies will easily flatten into a nice, thin round.



To prevent sticking as you flatten, place a small square of parchment paper or wax paper between the cookie dough and your glass bottom or spatula. If you don’t plan on glazing these cookie slices, then sprinkle the tops with a bit of my Nutmeg Sugar, (recipe at end of post) and bake. (Or butter the bottom of the glass and repeatedly dip in the Nutmeg Sugar.)

OPTION (B) – Rolled and Shaped Cookies (aka cookie-cutter cookies): For this second method of making my Eggnog Latte Cookies, form your freshly mixed dough into two thick discs. Wrap these separately in wax paper or plastic wrap, and allow to rest in the refrigerator for an hour or more. This helps flavors develop and hardens the butter in the dough, allowing you to roll it out without it sticking to everything. (Chilling overnight is fine, too.) Now move on to Step 3.



(3) Roll the dough: For shaped cookies, roll out the dough on a liberally floured surface to a thickness of 1/4 to 1/8 of an inch. I intentionally made this dough buttery and sticky so it will be able to take the extra flour that you use in the rolling process. If you skipped chilling the dough, however, you may have real trouble rolling it, even with flour, so chill it, baby! I would also advise you not to roll any thinner than 1/8 of an inch, otherwise your cookies may not hold their shapes. If you prefer a very thin cookie, then make the refrigerator cookies (see Step 2).


(4) Cut the dough: Using a cookie cutter, cut the rolled out dough into any shape you like. Because these are eggnog “latte” inspired cookies, I like to use a cookie cutter in the shape of a cup. (FYI: I purchased mine at this fun site: www.CookieCutter.com ) Stars, teddy bears, snowmen, angels, or gingerbread men or woman shapes are nice ideas for this cookie, too.

(5) Bake: Preheat oven to 350° F. and bake on a cookie sheet for 10 to 12 minutes. Parchment paper and silicon sheets are a great help in preventing cookies from sticking. Allow to cool. For a polished finish, brush tops of cooled cookies with Eggnog Glaze and sprinkle on Nutmeg Sugar (both of my recipes are below).


CLEO'S EGGNOG GLAZE: In a saucepan warm ¼ cup eggnog and 2 tablespoon butter over low heat. Do not allow this mixture to boil! If it does, you may get a scorched taste in your glaze. When butter is just melted, stir in 3 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar. I like to add in 1/2 teaspoon rum extract. If you really like rum, you may want to increaste this amount; if you dislike rum, simply leave out the extract. Keep stirring until the sugar is melted and a smooth glaze forms. If you did not sift the sugar, you may need to wisk the glaze to smooth out any clumping.


Once glaze is smooth and well blended, use a pastry brush to glaze the cookies. Remember that the glaze is hot! Watch your fingers and do not allow young children to glaze or they may get burned. Sprinkle immediately with Nutmeg Sugar before the glaze has a chance to harden.

CLEO'S NUTMEG SUGAR: Whisk together 1/4 cup granulated sugar and 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg. Sprinkle lightly over freshly glazed eggnog latte cookies and...









May your holidays be bright! 


New York Times bestselling author
of The Coffeehouse Mysteries and
Haunted Bookshop Mysteries



Cleo (Alice) with her husband Marc

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