Butterball Cookies

It's not very often that I'll say I can't wait till all my kids are home from school.. believe me, they are a busy and loud crowd! But this past Thanksgiving holiday I had them home for a whole week.. and "I didn't go crazy", do in part to my husband taking a week off his busy schedule and I not having to drive four kids to three different schools and childhood activities! We had so much fun playing family games and sporting activities (my idea of sporting these days is Wii), baking, cooking and sipping warm drinks by the fire, because we finally had some holiday weather!

I had a wonderful Thanksgiving, very busy, very filling and I'm happy to say we don't have Turkey for Christmas! :)
So this past week began the season of cookie baking and decorating. Tuesday I spent the day at my folks house making some family favorites and reminiscing with my mom of Christmas' past. As my mom had ingredients to go and her arms in dough.. as my dad had said, we had a day filled with holiday cheer.

This cookie recipe is a favorite of not just my Italian family, but there are renditions of these all over the world. This is where I might hear from my Italian amici (friends) that I am calling them by something there not. My mom and sister's call them Butterball Cookies.. so that is what I call them. Although, I found myself wanting to declare them as the perfect snowball.. not like the wet and hard packed kind.. these melt in your mouth and you won't want to toss them!

Please let me know what you traditionally call them and we can all enjoy these butterballs with hot cocoa, tea or espresso!
Ciao and saluto to the holiday season!

1 cup butter at room temperature
½ cup + 4 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 ¼ cups flour
¼ tsp. salt
¾ cups blanched and chopped almonds

Cream the butter and 4 tablespoons of the powdered sugar together. Add vanilla.
Mix together flour and salt. Blend with a wooden spoon into the sugar and butter mix. Mix well. Add the almonds and mix.
Chill dough for half an hour. Prepare a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350°. Roll dough into walnut sized balls. Place on cookie sheet about a ½ inch apart. These cookies do not expand so you can get many on a sheet.

Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes.
Roll immediately in powdered sugar. When cookies are cool roll in powdered sugar again.


The Blonde Duck said...

I call them delicious.

Megan said...

I think this cookie by any other name would taste just as sweet!
I missed you Laurie. I was starting to get worried but I know it's the busiest time of the year!
Glad you had a great Thanksgiving!

Susan said...

Oh Yum- these are the best. My Mom makes them every year and has always called them MELT AWAYS!
I guess because that's what they do once you put them in your mouth. Great recipe thanks for sharing it.

Proud Italian Cook said...

Hi Laurie, Glad you had a wonderful thanksgiving with your family. I just made a bunch of these yesterday to bring to my Aunt I was visiting today, she is well into her late 80's and her memory is fading, but when she opened the tin today, she had a huge smile on her face, and said "Puff cookies!" That's what we call them.
Wish we could share a few with a nice cup of coffee Laurie!

Anonymous said...

I'm not even going to try to name these cookies, Laurie, because you are so right! We Italians have so many names for the same darn cookie! haha But whatever you call them..they are wonderful. I make these all the time and love them. They truly do melt in your mouth! ;)

JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

Those are some of the best cookies ever! My family actually calls them "snowballs" and they are some of my favorites of the season!

Sounds like you had a wonderful holiday and I am thrilled that you were able to spend such wonderful quality time with your family.

Annie said...

I have to agree with the blonde duck!
But I live in Rhode Island where there is a large Italian-American community and most of my friends call them "Mama Cookies" and I have no idea why. Hahaha!

~p.s. thanks for stopping by!

Foodista said...

Yummy! Gotta try this one! Looks easy enough to make :)

Lori Lynn said...

Oh what pretty photos. the snowy white cookies, we NEED these in SoCal, don't we? I love this kind of cookie that is small and melts in your mouth. I would take it any day over a big chocolate chip cookie. So happy to hear you had a wonderful Thanksgiving Laurie.

Passionate About Baking said...

So many names for such an indulgent cookie Laurie...they're lovely!

RecipeGirl said...

Well, they're very similar to Mexican Wedding Cakes. For Christmas, I usually mix red and green sugar with the powdered sugar and then roll. Festive! They look wonderful.

joe@italyville said...

I love these cookies but never had the recipe... or knew what they were called. Thanks.

glamah16 said...

Another great cookie. They make an excellent presentation.