Ingredients for Cookies:
1 C unsalted butter, softened
2/3 C granulated sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp almond extract
2 1/2 C all-purpose flour
Ingredients for Decorating:
1/2 C semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
1/2 C white chocolate chips, melted
Finely shredded coconut
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar on medium until creamy, about 2 minutes.
- Add egg, vanilla, salt and almond extract. Beat on medium speed until well combined, about 1 minute.
- Reduce speed to low and add flour, beating until just incorporated.
- Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to chill.
- Using a cookie press, stamp the cookie dough onto the prepared baking sheets using the desired decorative templates. If the dough becomes too warm, chill it for 15 to 30 minutes and then continue stamping.
- If desired, sprinkle cookies with Christmas sprinkles.
- Bake the cookies until light golden, 9 to 12 minutes, rotating baking sheets halfway through the cook time.
- Cool the cookies on the baking sheets for 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely, about 30 minutes.
- Place the semisweet chocolate chips and white chocolate chips in 2 separate small microwavable bowls.
- Microwave on high for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes, stirring every 20 seconds, until melted and smooth (or, melt in a double boiler or a bowl over boiling water).
- Drizzle the melted chocolate on the cookies or dip them, topping with sparkling sugar, finely shredded coconut and Christmas sprinkles, if desired. Chocolate is common when making Swedish Spritz.
Spritz are a Christmas favorite in lots of households and it takes practice (and cookie press or pastry bag skills) to make them! My father-in-law learned to bake in the Navy and eventually had his own family bakery. He inherited the treasured wooden cookie press (pictured above) from one of his employers.
Spritz are crisp, fragile and buttery tasting. They originated in Germany around the 16th century. They are also known as Spritzgebäck (German), Swedish Butter Cookies or Pressed Butter Cookies. The original German name, “Spritzgeback” refers to verb “Spritzen”, meaning “to squirt”. German style Spritz cookies were made through squirting or pushing the soft dough through a cookie press. Norwegian style Spritz is traditionally in shapes of S's and O's.
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