This recipe is based off the Food52 recipe from Heidi Swanson that popped up on my feed last week. The original recipe, in my opinion, is good but it lacks depth of flavor. I love the taste you get from the rye flour, but the recipe seems to rely solely on it for flavor, and I thought it needed something a bit more interesting to amp it up. Enter: cardamom and orange zest. Just enough to be tasty and fragrant, but not so much as to be overpowering. Basically, we're just making the cookies a little more interesting.
The dough does have a tendency to crack while rolling it out, but just patch it up and you're good. It's pretty easy to work with otherwise.
This might be an obvious packaging option, but don't forget there are tons of cute cellophane bags out there at Target, Paper Source, your local craft stores, etc. They are SUPER useful for any occasion, and if you pick some with cute patterns, all you need to do is fill with cookies, add a ribbon and maybe some jingle bells, and you're good to go!
recipe adapted from Food52
1 1/4 cup rye flour
3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1/2 cup cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
zest of 1/2 orange (more if you'd like)
turbinado sugar (for sprinkling)
- Line a few baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a medium-sized bowl combine the flours, cardamom, and salt. Set aside.
- Combine the zest and granulated sugar together in a small bowl and rub together with your fingers.
- In an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together until light and fluffy.
- Add in the sugar/zest mixture, and mix until well incorporated.
- Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix only long enough to combine the two. The dough should no longer be dusty looking.
- Turn the dough out onto the counter, knead once or twice to bring it together, shape into a ball, flatten, wrap in plastic and chill it in a refrigerator for 30-45 minutes or until you're ready to use it.
- Heat your oven to 350F.
- Roll out your cookies on a lightly floured work surface. Roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness, and cut into shapes with the cookie cutter of your choice.
- Place on the prepared baking sheets an inch apart, and sprinkle each cookie with a bit of turbinado sugar.
- Bake for 7-10 minutes, or until cookies are fragrant and golden on the edges -- avoid over-baking or they will come out on the dry side.