Ozark Country Market held their fourth annual Christmas Cookie Contest December 2. There were over 20 entries. Judges were Renessa Perry, C.K. Rhodes and Jean Rhodes.
Karen Smithson won Best Overall cookie with her peppermint white chocolate shortbread cookie.
Peppermint White Chocolate Shortbread
(makes about 1 dozen)
2 cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
½ cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350F
In a small bowl, whisk flour and salt together.
In a separate bowl, beat the butter with electric mixer until smooth. Beat in the vanilla extract.
Gently stir in flour mixture just until incorporated. Flatten the dough into a disk shape, wrap in plastic wrap and chill dough for at least an hour.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a ¼ inch thickness. With a 2 to 3 inch round cookie cutter, cut out cookies. Use another cookie cutter about ¾ to 1 inch to cut out the center of half of the cookies (you will be sandwiching two cookies together and there will be a small window in the top cookie so that you can see the center).
Place the unbaked cookies on the baking sheet in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes. This will firm up the dough so that the cookies will maintain their shape when baked.
Bake for about 10 minutes or until cookies are lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.
To assemble cookies: Place the cookies with the cut-outs on a wire rack and dut the tops with powdered sugar.
On the bottom surface of the full cookie, sprinkle with a small amount of chopped white chocolate peppermint Hershey Candy Cane Kisses and ¼ cup chopped white chocolate chips. Place cut-out cookie on top. Put back in warm oven for about 2-3 minutes so cookies will stay together.