i’ve always been obsessed with baking. beginning at the ripe old age of 7, i would make cakes, cookies and squares on a weekly basis at home. luckiest family ever! well, they still are… every christmas before i go back home, i give my mom instructions to pick up my baking staples so i can whip up my favourite items. we’re talking 6 to 8 holiday treats that everyone looks forward to nibbling on throughout the season.
my favourite cookie is ‘pecan balls’. buttery, soft, delicate and pretty; they’re like shortbread but better. not to mention super simple to make: they only require a few ingredients, one bowl and take no time at all.
- pre-heat oven to 325°F
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (or pastry flour if you have it)
- 1 cup finely chopped pecans (toasted if you can)
- additional confectioners’ sugar for dusting
- in a large mixing bowl, cream butter, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy. gradually add flour. stir in pecans.
- chill in the fridge for 2 hrs. this will avoid cookies spreading.
- shape rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into 2 inch balls. do not over press. place 1 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet.
- bake for 20-22 minutes or until set and bottoms are lightly browned.
- let stand for 2-3 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool. roll in confectioners’ sugar when cool and tap off excess.
yield: about 36 cookies