These cute little reindeer were originally supposed to be elegant little acorn shaped cookies. Buttery walnut shortbread cookies dipped in chocolate and more walnuts to make them look like acorns. But somewhere along the way they ended up looking like mischievous reindeer. These little cuties would be a perfect addition to a Christmas cookie tray or to leave out for the jolly man in the red suit.
If you're looking for something a little more traditional, or are inclined to make these at any other time of year where reindeer are not as appropriate, I assure you that they're just as delectable without the antlers and noses!
Walnut Acorn Cookies
recipe from Suzanne and Gourmet
Ingredients for cookies
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup finely chopped walnuts (4 oz.)
Ingredients for decorating
8 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
If you're making reindeer, you'll also need candy eyes, red candy for noses, and pretzels for antlers.
Directions for making cookies
- Sift together flour, baking powder and salt.
- Beat together butter, brown sugar and vanilla with electric mixer until pale and fluffy.
- Add flour mixture, and blend together at low speed.
- Stir in walnuts with wooden spoon.
- The original recipe does not call for chilling the dough, but I found that my cookies did not spread as much if I chilled the dough for a couple of hours. You may want to try some both ways to see what works best for you!
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- Form 2 teaspoons dough (I used a small cookie scoop full) into egg shape. I pressed the dough ball into the bowl of a spoon to get uniform shapes.
- Arrange "acorns" 1 inch apart on parchment covered baking sheets. Bake on middle rack of oven for 10 minutes, or until bottoms are light brown.
- Remove cookies to rack to cool.
Dip half of each cookie into melted chocolate, and then into chopped nuts. Place on waxed paper or silicone lined baking sheet to set. (about 15 min.- it depends on the temperature of your kitchen!)
If you're making reindeer, dip half of your cookie into melted chocolate, but only coat the front with walnuts. Press two pretzels onto the back of the cookie into the chocolate. Use melted chocolate to affix the eyes and nose.