the holiday table :: "pretzel" cookies

December 15, 2011
The time is now and now is the time of cocktail parties galore. While I'm sure you have your new party dresses and tights- bright and festive and possibly over the top- all planned out, it's likely that the thought of what you'll bring to these parties may be a bit overwhelming.  Fret not m'dears, this addition to the perfect Holiday Table will keep your reputation high and your friends' bellies happy.
These aren't actual pretzels, of course.  They're sugar cookies rolled out thinly and dipped in chocolate.  I sprinkled some with a citrus fleur de sel and some with sparkling sugar. 

Also?  It would be advisable to dip these in a big glass of egg nog.  That would be a fabulous idea.

Chocolate-Dipped "Pretzel" Cookies
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 large egg

2½ tsp. vanilla extract

2½ cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp. salt

2 cups dark chocolate
sea salt. for garnish
sparkling sugar. for garnish
  1. In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and confectioners’ sugar on medium-high speed until smooth, 1-2 minutes.
  2. Beat in the egg, vanilla extract, seeds scraped from the vanilla bean, and lemon zest until blended. Mix in the flour and salt on low speed just until incorporated.
  3. Form the dough into a ball and wrap tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until chilled and firm, at least 1-2 hours.
  4. When you are ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 375˚ F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Roll the dough out on a well floured work surface and form tablespoon-sized balls.  Roll balls into a cylindrical shape.   Trim edges, if desired, to make all pretzel lengths equal. 
  6. Bake 8-10 minutes, rotating the sheets halfway through baking.  Allow to cool on the baking sheet 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  7. Melt chocolate in a double broiler and dip ends of cookies into melted chocolate.  Sprinkle with fleur de sel and/or sparkling sugar.