Kim Nykanen of Claremont was one of the 10 winners of last year's Los Angeles Times Holiday Cookie Bake-Off with Ronnie's raspberry crescents:
"This was always my and my five siblings' favorite Christmas cookie growing up. Since the recipe only makes 24 cookies, they were obviously a precious commodity! I've made it every year for at least the last 25 years. And my older sisters have too. I'll usually make a cookie sampler, just three or four types, but these are absolutely my husband's favorite cookie, and so for the last 20 years, even if I make no other cookies, I make these. I try to hide how easy they are so they don't decide what a cute Valentine's Day cookie they would be too!"
These festive cookies are one of the favorite holiday cookie recipes we've collected in our updated "Los Angeles Times Holiday Cookies" e-book. The cookbook now includes 65 recipes from a wide range of sources, including world-famous pastry chefs, favorite bakeries and home cooks. And check out the favorite holiday recipes we've collected in our "Los Angeles Times Holiday Handbook." The book shares more than 110 seasonal recipes to help you celebrate Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and New Year's.
Each book is $4.99. They are available at the Los Angeles Times bookstore for Kindle, Nook and iBooks.
Total time: 1 hour, plus cooling time
Servings: Makes 2 dozen cookies
Note: Adapted from a recipe by Kim Nykanen.
3 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons (5 ounces) flour
1/4 cup seedless raspberry preserves
1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, or in a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat together the cream cheese and butter until well-blended. Slowly beat in the flour until well combined to form a soft dough. Divide the dough in half and shape each half into a disk. Wrap each disk in wax paper and chill for at least 1 hour, up to overnight.
2. Heat the oven to 400 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll out each ball to about a 9-inch circle. Cut each circle into 12 wedges. Put a scant half teaspoon of jam on the wide end of each wedge. Roll each wedge from the wide end toward the point to form a crescent. Place each crescent point-side down on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake until golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the cookies and cool on a rack.
Glaze and assembly
1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted
2 teaspoons lemon juice
In a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar and lemon juice until smooth to form a glaze. Drizzle the glaze over the cooled cookies.
Each of 2 dozen cookies: 87 calories; 1 gram protein; 9 grams carbohydrates; 0 fiber; 5 grams fat; 3 grams saturated fat; 14 mg cholesterol; 4 grams sugar; 13 mg sodium.