Candy Cane Cookies - a holiday tradition! Almond shortbread cookies twisted into candy cane shapes and topped with crushed candy canes. These are the BEST Christmas cookies EVER! Butter, shortening, egg, powdered sugar, vanilla, almond extract, flour, salt, red food coloring, candy canes and sugar. This is a great recipe to let the kids help shape and decorate the cookies. It isn't Christmas at our house without these cookies!
Preheat oven to 375ºF. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Combine crushed candy canes and sugar. Set aside.
Mix butter, shortening, powdered sugar, egg, vanilla, and almond extract thoroughly. Stir in flour and salt.
Divide the dough in half. Blend in food coloring into one half of the dough.
Divide each half of the dough into 36 balls.
Roll a ball of each color into a 4-inch long rope. Place strips side by side. Press together lightly. Twist as a rope and place on the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough.
Bake cookies for 9 minutes. Remove cookie sheet from oven and sprinkle cookies iwth candy cane mixture while still warm.
I used Crisco shortening in the cookies. I have NEVER substituted more butter for the shortening. Using all butter will completely change the cookie. They will also spread more and may not keep their shape. I do NOT recommend changing the recipe.
Use a food processor to finely crush the candy canes. I crush them until they are mostly candy cane dust with a few chunks.
I use a kitchen scale to divide the dough.
Make one cookie at a time. If you roll out all the dough of one color the dough tends to dry and won't twist.
The cookies will keep 3 to 4 days in an air-tight container.
I have never frozen these cookies, but I think they would be fine if frozen after baking.