For the next 21 days I will be indulging myself in christmas movies, music, decorations, and of course food. Christmas is my favorite time of the year because the decorations are gorgeous, the music is jolly, the movies are classics, and the food is simply sweet and delicious. But, one day of Christmas just isn’t enough for me, so I celebrate all month long. In honor of this one month celebration, I’m starting out with one of my favorite Christmas cookies, vanilla almond crescents. These cute delicate little cookies are crumbly and melt in your mouth. I used to eat them plain, but then decided why not dip them in chocolate!? Chocolate goes with just about anything, especially these! I recommend white chocolate, but milk chocolate is just as tasty. I like to sprinkle them with crushed candy canes to add a small splash of color and hint of holiday peppermint. These cookies are perfect for a light after dinner dessert or mid-day snacking. You choose!

CRESCENTS
• 1 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
• 1/2 cup sweet butter (1 stick)
• 1/2 cup ground almonds
• 2 tablespoons sugar
• 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
• 1/2 cup of confectioners’ sugar

CHOCOLATE COATING
• Chocolate melting disks (recommend white or milk chocolate)
• Vegetable shortening

DIRECTIONS
01 Preheat the oven to 350º and line A baking sheet with parchment paper.

02 Cut the butter into the flour using a pastry blender, until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

03 Grind you almonds with a food processor. If you don’t have a food processor you can also use a food chopper.

04 Stir the ground almonds, sugar and vanilla extract into the flour and butter mixture. I like to continue using the pastry blender to do so. Then work the mixture with your hands until it becomes a soft dough.

05 Squish and roll small pieces of the dough into 1/2” thick by 2” long pieces. Shape these pieces into crescents.

06 Bake cookies for 20 minutes until they are pale golden in color.

07 While crescents are cooling on a wire rack, melt the chocolate of your choice in a double boiler. Depending on how many cookies you want to dip, the amount of chocolate you need will vary. You should be safe with 1 to 1 1/2 cups of chocolate melting disks. Do not get a single drop of water in your chocolate or it will seize. If your chocolate is too thick, add a little bit of vegetable shortening to thin it out.

08 Dip crescents half-way in melted chocolate and set on a sheet of parchment paper to harden. Decorate with crushed candy canes before the chocolate has hardened.

09 Once the chocolate has completely hardened, lightly sift confectioners’ sugar over the top of each crescent.

10 You may also leave the crescents plain with no chocolate if you desire. In this case roll each plain crescent in confectioners’ sugar.

Enjoy! You can view the printer friendly version by clicking right here.

GUEST COLUMNIST / KAYLA BILL
Kayla Bill is a designer and foodie who finds cooking + baking very therapeutic. She bakes, cooks, photographs, and develops recipes for the fab foodie column.