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Pistachio Cranberry Icebox Cookies

  • Servings: about 60 cookies

Holiday gift giving starts with cookies. Crimson cranberries and green tinted pistachios not only taste delightful, but will brighten the food gift. Simplify your cookie making by wrapping the dough in parchment paper into a log and storing in the fridge or freezer for later - that way you can slice off as much dough as you want to make as many cookies as you'd like, later. Add a sparkling finish by brushing the log of dough with beaten eggs and rolling in coarse white decorating sugar; slice and bake. When baked on parchment paper, cookies bake more evenly and slide off without breaking.

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  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped pistachio nuts
  • 1/3 cup snipped dried cranberries
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup coarse white decorating sugar
  • Parchment paper


Step 1

In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the sugar, cinnamon, orange zest and salt. Beat about 3 minutes or until pale and fluffy, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Reduce speed to low. Beat in as much of the flour as you can, 1/2 cup at a time, with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour. Stir in pistachio nuts and cranberries. Using your hands, knead dough until smooth. Divide dough in half.

Step 2

On parchment paper, shape each half into an 8 1/2-inch-long log (about 1 1/2 inches across). Lift and smooth the waxed paper to help shape the logs. Wrap each log in parchment paper. Chill about 2 hours or until dough is firm enough to slice.

Step 3

Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Unwrap dough logs; reshape, if necessary. Using a pastry brush, brush the beaten egg over the sides (but not the ends) of each log. Sprinkle coarse white decorating sugar on a separate sheet of parchment paper. Roll dough logs in sugar and gently press into sugar, coating evenly. Reshape, if necessary.

Step 4

Cut logs into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Rotate roll while cutting to prevent flattening. (If dough log gets too soft to slice, freeze briefly until it is firm enough to slice.) Place slices 1 inch apart on prepared cookie sheets.

Step 5

Bake in a 350° oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until edges are firm and just starting to brown. Cool on cookie sheets for 1 minute. Transfer cookies to wire racks; cool.

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