Monday, December 3, 2007

Twelve Days of Goodies: Part III

Like the seven-layer bars, my next "goodie" is a childhood favorite. I remember loving them as a child, then all of a sudden my mom stopped making them. I probably haven't had them for 25 years. Last summer, while looking through my mom's recipe book, I found the recipe. It was on a piece of calendar paper from 1974. It was in my dad's handwriting. (My parents have been divorced for nearly 30 years.) The recipe is called Swedish Nut Balls, but these cookies are also known as Russian Tea Cakes, Mexican Wedding cookies and Italian Wedding cookies. There must be a name for every nationality.

I remember writing down the recipe, and I've looked over it several times in the last couple of weeks. One thing I didn't quite grasp the magnitude of was the one pound of butter it calls for. Yes, one pound of butter! My eyes about popped out of my head as I reached in the fridge and got out one entire package of butter. It's a good thing I stocked up for all of my holiday baking. I usually don't even have "real" butter in the house.

So, yesterday I spent the entire afternoon making these little cookies. The dough is definitely different than most. (Must be the butter.) I was concerned I'd written the recipe incorrectly, so I was anxious to try one from the first batch. YES! They were exactly like I remembered them!

I had plenty of time to listen to lots of music while the baking was going on. I actually listened to Radiohead's In Rainbows two times. That album will get you. I swear it has the power to keep you from moving the iPod dial to something different! At the kids' request, I listened to "Colin" next. That's Colin MacIntyre, aka Mull Historical Society. After that I was tired, and once again resorted to "string ensembles" on Pandora.


olives and more said...

Hello Sweets! So you mentioned every nationality having these cookies...In Greek, we call these Kourabiedes. A super traditional almond short-bread cookie, covered in tons of powdered sugar. I have had these cookies every year since I can remember. I have never baked them, but all our Greek family friends do...YUM!

The Dalai Mama said...

I thought you may chime in with the Greek version. I almost even asked you directly in the post!

SleekPelt said...

I can't quite tell what they look like from the picture, DM, but can you unfreeze one for me to have when I get home tomorrow night? With all of that butter, they've got to be good.

The Dalai Mama said...

Sure, sleek.

Rebecca Burch said...

Those are a favorite in my house, too, although we've always made them with pecans. It's like, there's a version for every nationality with different nuts in them, but really it's the same recipe, almost exactly.

My cousin married a Japanese/Hawaiian whose family made these in Hawaii with macadamia nuts when he was a kid. That version is sooooo good!

The Dalai Mama said...

rebecca: I also made them with pecans, but I'm telling you, next time it's going to be macadamia nuts. I can't even imagine how good that would be!