December 2: Swedish Butter Cookies


Today I made this wonderful recipe from my friend Michele, that she shared with me a few years ago. I have a lot of work to catch up on today, so I needed something that wouldn’t take a lot of time. Swedish butter cookies are pretty quick while also being impressive. When I put the cherry on each one, my daughter saw them and said, “Oh yeah! I love these kind!”

The dough is a standard butter, sugar, vanilla base, with an egg yolk instead of the whole egg. The egg white is kept for later, when it needs to be whipped. Once the flour and half-and-half is incorporated, it should make a ball in the mixer. For me, that generally means it all congregates on my paddle attachment and brings the top of the mixer down with a big thud. 

I whipped the egg white in a tiny little bowl with one whisk attachment of my hand mixer. I also chopped a 1/2 cup of pecans with my old Pampered Chef chopper. I ended up needing more, because I wasn’t being stingy with the pecans. 

I like to dry the maraschino cherries a bit, so the juice from it doesn’t stain the cookie. I also like to swat the little girl that keeps stealing maraschino cherry halves from my bowl when I’m not looking. You dip a dough ball in the egg white, and then the pecans, and put it on a cookie sheet. When the tray is full, put half of a maraschino cherry in the middle of each cookie, pressing down slightly.

Into a 350 degree oven for 15-20 minutes they go. Keep an eye on these. A few years ago, I burnt a batch of these because I got distracted by a cool looking spider that I wanted to take a picture of. I got the picture of the spider, but at the expense of a tray of cookies. It was a sad day. 

I love these cookies, and they look so pretty with the cherry in the middle. Truth be told, I love maraschino cherries, and I always think about the episode of How I Met Your Mother where Marshall has a coworker that does all this crazy stuff, including eating a jar of maraschino cherries for money. I never understood that, because I’d totally do it for free. And maybe actually have. 

Swedish Butter Cookies(

(courtesy of the fabulous Miss Michele!)

  • ½ lb. butter or margarine (2 sticks)
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 2 c. flour
  • ½ c. sugar
  • 1 egg yolk (save whites to whip)
  • 1 T. half & half (I always use milk)
  • ½ t. baking powder
  • ½ c. chopped pecans
  • 1 bottle maraschino cherries

Cream butter, add sugar; add egg yolk then vanilla and mix well.  Next, add the flour with the baking powder mixed in.  Alternate adding the flour with the half & half.  Form dough into little balls the size of a walnut.  Whip egg whites stiff.  Dip dough balls into whipped egg white and roll in pecans.  Place a half of a cherry in the center and push it down lightly.  Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet for 15-20 min. in a 350 degree oven.  Watch them so they don’t over brown.  Yum, yum, yum!

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