December Days: 09 The Best Christmas Cookie!

When I was younger, we used to make these cookies from a recipe in Mom's big green cookbook. They were Chocolate Pinwheels and were they fun!

So I tried making them again. This time I wanted them 'Christmasy' so I put peppermint flavor and red food color in the dough. The process involved a little work, but was a lot of fun and was worth it. They turned out great!

When I photographed the finished cookies, I laid one on a crocheted tablecloth. Then I ate it. When I looked at the photos, I saw a loose thread that was distracting so I redid the shot. Then I ate that cookie too. Then I noticed the cookie had a flaw, so I redid it again... I am so full!

Note: I used Dutch cocoa instead of the baking chocolate and it worked fine!

Here is the recipe from Meta Given's Modern Encyclopedia of Cooking

(Text is exactly as published)


#1 square chocolate
2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt, scant
¾ cup soft butter
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 ½ teaspoon vanilla
1 large egg
1 ½ tablespoon milk

#Use unsweetened chocolate unless otherwise specified.
Grease baking sheets lightly. Start oven 10 minutes before baking; set to moderately hot (400ยบ F.).

Melt chocolate over hot water, then cool to lukewarm. Sift flour, measure, resift with baking powder and salt. Cream butter until smooth and shiny, add sugar in 2 or 3 portions, creaming well. Stir in vanilla, then beat in egg until fluffy. Add flour and milk alternately in 2 or 3 portions, mixing until smooth after each. Now divide dough into 2 parts, with a little more in one than the other. Blend chocolate into the smaller portion with a wooden spoon. Chill both portions of dough about an hour. Now shape each portion into a rectangular bar about 5 by 6 inches. Return light dough to refrigerator. Place chocolate dough on lightly floured pastry cloth and roll out with floured, stockinet-covered rolling pin into a rectangle about 12 x 15 inches. Use a 12 x 15 inch sheet of waxed paper as a guide to roll out this rectangle. Now lay another 12 x 15 inch sheet of waxed paper on Bottom of a Baking Sheet, then set baking sheet on dough. Now quickly invert pastry cloth with its dough onto Back of Baking Sheet. Lift off pastry cloth and place baking sheet of dough in refrigerator.
Next, roll out light dough on pastry cloth to same size – 12 x 115 inches. Now remove rolled-out chocolate dough from refrigerator; place another baking sheet carefully over top of this dough. Bring the 2 baking sheets to edge of light dough, then Gradually lower over light dough, pulling out the Inside Baking Sheet as the chocolate dough falls exactly into place on top of light dough. Remove waxed paper from top. Now carefully roll up double layer of dough snugly, starting at the narrow-end. Wrap roll in waxed paper, twisting ends together tightly. Now roll up in thin cardboard and fasten with 2 or 3 rubber bands. (Shirt cardboard is ideal.) Place in refrigerator to chill until very firm. To bake, cut into slices 1/8-inch thick. Place on prepared sheets. Bake 8 to 9 minutes or until delicately browned. Remove immediately from baking sheet to cake racks to cool. 4 to 4 ½ dozen.


  1. Those turned out absolutely beautiful! And, I loved your comments about photographing the cookies and finding flaws. That was so funny. Seems as though you are having a lot of fun with these Christmas posts.


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