We’re  bundled up at home today due to Winter Storm Pax.  As the house was feeling a bit chilly, I decided to get baking, and I really wanted to make some cheerful, colorful Valentine’s Day cookies.  I decided to find my grandmother’s cookie press, and make a Spritz cookie with the press.  I like using the cookie press, as it’s much easier than rolling and cutting cookies.  The Big One asked me to make sure that I added some chocolate to them.  I wasn’t quite sure of the best solution, given that I wanted to make the cookies pink for Valentine’s Day.  I remembered that I had a few of the mini-sized Hershey’s kisses.  I grabbed those, the red food coloring, the cookie ingredients, and the cookie press, and tried my hand at the Valentine’s Day Spritz Cookies.  This recipe makes a ton of cookies, approximately 72 to 84, so there will be plenty to share with your loved ones!

My Mom Made That: Valentine's Day Spritz Cookies

My grandmother has always called cookie press cookies, or Spritz cookies, “Cream Cheese Cookies.”  I guess that is due to the fact that cream cheese is one of the ingredients.  They definitely have a different flavor than other cookies, and I think that if I had maraschino cherries at home, they would be great to include on the tops of the cookies.  I love my grandmother’s old cookie press from the 1960’s.  It feels much sturdier than the ones that I’ve seen recently.  It also holds a lot of dough in the canister.

My Mom Made That: Valentine's Day Spritz Cookies

This is one of the only recipes that I use that uses shortening rather than butter.  I’m considering trying this recipe again with butter, but the current recipe uses shortening, rather than butter.  In fact, all of the recipes I’ve seen call for shortening, and I’m not sure what the addition of butter will do to them.  Of course, there is one way to find out!

Ingredients:

  • 4 ounces Cream Cheese (1/2 of a standard cream cheese rectangle)
  • 1 cup of Butter flavored shortening
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 1/4 cup of White Sugar
  • 1 1/4 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 50 drops of red food coloring (this is optional, but it made the hearts pink.)

Cream the shortening and cream cheese.  Then add the sugar and egg yolk.  Mix until well blended and creamy.  Add vanilla.  Add in red food coloring.  Then add the salt and the flour a small amount at a time.  Once the dough is smooth and well-blended, place it into the cookie press.

My Mom Made That: Valentine's Day Spritz Cookies

It takes a little time to get the hang of using the press.  You put the cookie press on the surface of the Silpat, and then turn the screw just slightly until a small amount of the dough is pressed out of the design.  It will look like a very skinny heart, but it puffs up and looks like a more generous heart after baking.  Cook them at 350 for 9 minutes.  If you cook them too long, the cookie edges will start to turn brown.  I try to watch them carefully to make sure that they don’t burn.  As soon as the cookies were removed from the oven, I placed the mini Hershey’s kisses in the centers of the cookies, and then let them cool.

My Mom Made That: Valentine's Day Spritz Cookies

The cookies are bite-sized and perfect for sharing.  Personally, I think these cookies are a little plain, and not that sweet, but the Big One loves them.  He says they are delicious.  I think they are a nice Valentine’s treat, and the chocolate kisses really make them melt in your mouth.  Why don’t you make a few for your sweetie on Friday?