No, there is not a tiny baby Jesus baked into these King Cake Spritz Cookies, but don't they look a lot like the mini versions of their inspiration?
Traditional King Cake is an enriched, sweet, yeasted holiday bread flavored with nutmeg and cinnamon, and topped with a powdered sugar glaze and sprinkled with purple, green, and gold sparkling sugars. The purple represents justice, the green represents faith, and the gold represents power. The three colors also represent the Three Kings.
I bet you've noticed that my sprinkling skills are "rustic." While I don't have a photo of a proper King Cake to post here, if you google King Cake, you will see that the sprinkles on them are pretty messy too. So my cookies are authentic, right?
You could actually use one of these cookies in Fat Tuesday diorama!
I have faded memories of making spritz cookies at Christmas with my mom. She wasn't much of a baker, so I can't even imagine that she owned a cookie press, but I do remember using one in our kitchen as a teenager.
This last Christmas, I ordered this cookie press, and immediately fell in love with spritz cookies! I made them for a couple of cookie exchanges, as well for Christmas Eve. They are fun to make with kids, although my youngest grandson did run around clicking the cookie press like a gun. Boys!
This recipe is pretty simple and very forgiving. If you mess up, you can scoop up the dough and place it back into the cookie press.
A few hints on making spritz cookies:
- Do not use nonstick cookie sheets. For best results, use parchment paper or ungreased cookie sheets.
- The dough should be moist and at room temperature in order to pass through the cookie press and stick to the cookie sheet. Do not chill the dough.
- Place the cookie press directly on the cookie sheet and then press out the dough with one click. Lift the cookie press straight up off of the dispensed dough.
There are lots of disks in this cookie press that you can make cookies for all occasions and holidays, not just Christmas. Such as Mardi Gras!
King Cake Spritz Cookies
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon or cardamom
- Pinch of nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 1/2 cups (12 ounces) unbleached all purpose flour
- Confectioner's sugar glaze (about a cup of sugar and a small amount of water or lemon juice)
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix the butter and sugar with the paddle attachment on medium speed until fluffy.
- Add the egg, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt, and beat until combined. Add the flour, and mix on low until just combined.
- Add the dough into the cookie press and add the desired disk. Press the dough out onto the ungreased or parchment lined baking sheets, about one inch apart. Depending on the season, you can either decorate the cookies with sprinkles before baking, or bake them, glaze them, and the add sprinkles.
- Bake the cookies, one sheet at a time, for 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
- For the Mardi Gras cookies, mix one cup of powdered sugar with just enough water or lemon juice (one teaspoon at a time) to create a glaze you can dip the cookies into. Dip the cookies and sprinkle with the various colored sugars. Let dry for a few hours. Store in an airtight container.
Dough recipe adapted from Kuhn Rikon
Are you ready for Fat Tuesday? The theme this month for the Creative Cookie Exchange group is Mardi Gras! If you are a blogger and want to join in the fun, contact Laura at thespicedlife AT gmail DOT com and she will get you added to our Facebook group, where we discuss our cookies and share links. You can also just use us as a great resource for cookie recipes--be sure to check out our Pinterest Board and our monthly posts (you can find all of them here at The Spiced Life). We all post on the first Tuesday after the 15th of each month! Also, if you are looking for inspiration to get in the kitchen and start baking, check out what all of the hosting bloggers have made:
- King Cake Cookie Bars from Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks
- King Cake Spritz Cookies from Karen's Kitchen Stories
- Mardi Gras Macarons from All That's Left are the Crumbs