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Santa's coat buttons

Santa's coat buttons
Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times

Beyond the colorful decorations and after the initial rush of sugar, holiday cookies are about memories and tradition. Be they humble or ornate, our baked goods are used to celebrate and give thanks -- thanks for our childhoods, the blessings ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour, plus chilling time for the dough | Makes about 3 dozen cookies
  • 2 cups (9.5 ounces) flour
  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) plus 2 tablespoons butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup red decorating sugar
  • 1 teaspoon white decorating sugar

Step 1In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, powdered sugar and salt. Add the butter, pulsing until the dough comes together.

Step 2Remove the dough and divide in half. Shape each half into a log about 1 1/2 inches in diameter, rolling in waxed paper. Chill the dough until firm enough to slice, at least 30 minutes.

Step 3Heat the oven to 350 degrees, and line 2 baking sheets with parchment. Pour the red sugar into a small bowl or baking dish to a thickness of about one-half inch.

Step 4Cut each dough log into one-half-inch rounds. Press each round lightly onto the sugar to coat, then place, sugar side up, onto the parchment-lined baking sheet 1 to 2 inches apart. Sprinkle a few white crystals on top of each cookie for added sparkle. Use the blunt end of a skewer or similar item to make 2 indentations for "buttonholes."

Step 5Bake the cookies for 8 minutes, then reverse the sheets and continue to bake until the cookies are golden on the bottom (no coloring on top), 8 to 12 minutes longer. Cool on racks.

Note: Adapted from Joan Kay GeorgeHerzberg. Red and white decorating sugars can be found at most well-stocked markets, as well as cooking and baking supply stores.


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