These cookies were passed down from my Grandma to my Mom. I loved helping Mom make them as a girl, especially decorating them with colored sugar! The past two years I’ve gotten to make them with my Grandma who told me about the Pennsylvania Dutch cookie making tradition. Her and my Grandpap moved to Pennsylvania when they were young, where they picked up lots of yummy Christmas cookie recipes!
Makes: a lot! You can halve or quarter this recipe if you like.
1 lb butter (4 sticks or 2 cups)
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. baking powder
2 lb powdered sugar (~7 1/2 cups)
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. vanilla
8 cups flour
Combine all ingredients, adding the flour in last. Divide dough into 4 sections, wrap each ball in plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Roll out dough to about 1/8″ for nice crispy cookies. (This is how we like it, with a cup of tea or coffee.) You may have to let dough sit out at room temperature several minutes if it is too hard to roll out. Cut out desired shapes and sprinkle with colored sugar. Bake for 6-11 minutes depending on your oven and the thickness of your cookies, so keep an eye on them! Let cool a little on the cookie sheet to harden before removing to a cooling rack or wax paper.