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Almond candy cane cookies

Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Yields Makes about 4 dozen cookies
Almond candy cane cookies
(Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)

Cookies

1

In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using a hand mixer, cream together the butter, shortening and sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time, until incorporated, then add the almond and vanilla extracts. Add the salt, then slowly add the flour, a little at a time, until completely incorporated to form the dough.

2

Divide the dough in half. Cover and refrigerate half. To the other half, add enough food coloring to turn the dough a rich pink. Cover the other half; and refrigerate both pieces of dough about 30 minutes.

3

Heat the oven to 375 degrees.

4

Form the cookies: Take a heaping tablespoon each of the pink and white dough. Roll each piece into a strip, then take the two strips and place them side by side so they are touching each other. Roll them together so you have one uniform piece, red on one side and white on the other, then twist to swirl. Twist the dough to form the shape of a candy cane. Continue forming the cookies with all of the dough.

5

Bake the cookies on a cookie sheet until set, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove the hot cookies from the sheet carefully, as the “hook” of the cane can break easily; allowing them to sit on the cookie sheet for a minute or so after baking makes the removal a bit easier. Glaze while hot.

Glaze and assembly

1

In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat the softened butter with the powdered sugar. Beat in the almond extract, then slowly add the milk. Add enough milk to create a glaze-like consistency (not as thick as frosting, but thick enough to coat the cookie). Glaze the cookies generously while hot. Feel free to add a second coating of glaze if you’d like!

2

The cookies are good warm, but they are actually at their best the second day, or after they have had time to really cool and properly set.

Adapted from a recipe by Kristen Johnson.

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