It’s officially Christmas Eve Eve! I’ve bought all the gifts, wrapped them and placed them under the tree. The cards and well wishes have all been sent, my end of the cooking is completed and every corner of the house screams Christmas cheer. Towers of cookies adorn my dining table and platters and boxes have been prepared to deliver to friends and family.

I may possibly get time relaxation for the rest of the day and now, I also have time to focus on the real reason for the season, a holy birth, and the message behind it – peace on earth, good will towards man. Whatever your faith and beliefs, I think we can all agree on kindness, helping others in need and hoping for peace.

I still have a few recipes to share with you and I’ll try to post them all. If not for Christmas, you can always try your hand and baking skills for the New Year!

My mother always made these sesame-covered butter cookies for Christmas and Easter and, as with most of her family holiday traditions, I’ve carried on, baking them along with all the other cookies and pastries I’ve been posting this week. Try one or two with a cup of tea or a mug of coffee and have yourself a Merry Lttle Christmas …


 Pre-heat oven to 350º


9 cups flour

3 tablespoons baking powder

Juice and zest from 1 large orange

1 dozen large eggs

4 cups sugar

1 pound unsalted butter, softened

1 additional egg

Sesame seeds

In a bowl, mix together the flour and baking powder. Set aside. In a separate bowl, mix together eggs, sugar, orange juice and zest. In a large bowl, cream the butter. Add the egg mixture to the butter, blending well. Mix in the flour. Form into a dough that can be worked to form shapes without sticking to your hands. If necessary, add more flour until the desired consistency is achieved. Form each cookie into small braid-like twists, circles, and swirly S shapes. Lightly beat an egg with 1 teaspoon of water. Brush the egg mixture onto each cookie and sprinkle sesame seeds. Bake for approximately 20 minutes. Yields approximately 120 cookies.

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