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Yule Logs

1 C. butter
4 T. powdered sugar (plus extra for coating)
1 t. vanilla extract
2 C. flour
1 C. pecans, chopped

Mix all ingredients together. Use a medium sized cookie scoop or hand shape into 1″ balls and place on a cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes.

Just before cool, roll in additional powdered sugar.

Can place close together on the cookie sheet since they hold their shape when baking.

Makes about 40 cookies.

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Candy Cane White Hot Chocolate

1/2 gallon of milk (8 Cups)
2 (4 oz.) pkgs. Ghiridelli white chocolate baking bars, broken into pieces
1/2 C. crushed candy canes
1/2 t. vanilla extract
whipped cream and additional crushed candy canes to put on top

Add milk, chocolate pieces, crushed candy canes and vanilla to a 5 quart or larger slow cooker.

Cover and cook on low for approx. 2 hours, stirring every 15 minutes.

Top with whipped cream and candy canes when serving.

I’ve also used Lindt white chocolate bars in place of the Ghiridelli.

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Pineapple Pretzel Salad

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. sugar
8 oz. Cool Whip, thawed
20 oz. can crushed pineapple, drained well
1 1/2 C. crushed pretzels
1 stick butter, melted
1/2 C. sugar

Mix crushed pretzels, melted butter and sugar. Spread on a cookie sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for 5-6 minutes. When cool, crumble into small pieces.

Mix cream cheese, sugar, Cool Whip, and pineapple. Refrigerate. (This can be done the night before.) When ready to serve, add pretzel mixture to cream cheese/pineapple mixture.

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Cranberry Meatballs

2 lbs. ground beef
1 C. bread crumbs
2 eggs, beaten
2 T. Soy Sauce
1/4 t. black pepper
1/2 t. garlic powder
1/3 C. ketchup
2 cans jellied cranberry sauce (one can be whole berries)
1 (18 oz.) bottle barbecue sauce (Sweet Baby Ray’s Honey)
2 T. brown sugar
1 T. lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together the hamburger, bread crumbs, eggs, soy sauce, pepper, garlic powder and ketchup. Form into small balls and bake for 30 minutes.

In a saucepan over low heat combine the cranberry sauce, barbecue sauce, brown sugar and lemon juice. Simmer and stir until smooth. Add meatballs and simmer for 1 hour. Serve warm.

7-10 servings

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Yuletide Layer Bars

1/2 C. butter
1 1/2 C. graham cracker crumbs
1 1/2 C. flaked coconut
1 C. chopped walnuts
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 2/3 C. Nestle Toll House Morsels (Christmas colors)

Preheat over to 350 degrees.

Melt butter and sprinkle graham cracker crumbs over butter. Stir well and carefully press into the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Sprinkle with coconut and walnuts. Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over the top. Sprinkle with morsels and press down lightly.

Bake for 25-30 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. Cut into bars.

Makes 2-3 dozen bars

Tips: I ran the coconut through the food processor so it was fine. I also used a combination of red and white swirled vanilla chips and chocolate chips in place of the Nestle morsels.

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Best Sugar Cookie Recipe

1 C. butter, softened
1 C. sugar
1 t. vanilla extract
1/2 t. almond extract
1 egg
2 t. baking powder
3 C. flour

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In the bowl of your mixer cream butter and sugar until smooth.
3. Beat in extracts and egg.
4. In a separate bowl, combine baking powder with flour and add a little at a time to wet ingredients. The dough will be very stiff. If it becomes too stiff for your mixer turn out the dough onto a countertop surface. Wet your hands and finish off kneading the dough by hand.
5. Do not chill dough! Divide into workable batches, roll out onto a floured surface and cut. You want these cookies to be on the thicker side (closer to 1/4 inch).
6. Bake at 350 for 6-8 minutes. Let cool on the cookie sheet until firm enough to transfer to a cooling rack.