Cream Cheese Spritz


 We like spritz – they are a fast, fancy cookie.  I had to try this recipe from "The Taste of Home Baking Book" because it used shortening instead of butter and also used orange peel and cinnamon.  I now confess, I used half shortening and half butter; the result was a crisper cookie than my usual all-butter recipe.  If you aren’t going to use all butter, we thought the cinnamon was a nice touch.
I have made spritz with both my son and our grandkids – they can sprinkle on sugar or decorate them when they are younger, and as they get older, they can press them out also.  We practice on a paper plate first.  You need to make these cookies on a plain cookie sheet – they won’t stay down on the pan if you use parchment.  
My old cookie press has lots of choices – there are even playing card suits – spades, clubs, hearts and diamonds, for your bridge club!    I keep my press and cutters together in a plastic box – no searching at the last minute.  I bought my latest press for $2 at the local church thrift shop, complete with box and book!  I had a choice from a large box of them!
Don’t chill your dough – it needs to be soft to press out easily.  If you are new, try a simpler pattern like the hearts.  I also like my peanut butter cookie recipe pressed out for Spritz.  You can also color the dough or frost and decorate spritz – there is infinite variety.   All shortbread-type cookies are better if mellowed at least a day or two - the perfect make ahead.   The baked cookies freeze well - I like to have them on hand for the holidays.                
                           Cream Cheese Spritz
  1        Cup  Shortening
  3        Ounces  Cream Cheese -- softened
  1        Cup  Sugar
  1        Large  Egg Yolk
  1        Teaspoon  Vanilla Extract
  1        Teaspoon  Orange Peel -- very finely grated
  2 ½    Cups  Flour, All-purpose
     ½    Teaspoon  Salt
  1/4     Teaspoon  Cinnamon
            Food Coloring -- optional
            Decorator Candies -- optional
            Colored Sugar -- optional
In a mixing bowl, beat shortening and cream cheese until blended.  Add sugar; beat until creamy.  Beat in the egg yolk, vanilla, and orange peel.  Combine the flour, salt and cinnamon; gradually add to creamed mixture.  Add food coloring if desired - you may want to divide dough into portions and color each portion a different color, like pink or light green.
DON”T CHILL THE DOUGH.  Using a cookie press, press dough 1" apart onto ungreased baking sheets.  Decorate if desired with candies or sugars.  Bake at 350° for 9-12 minutes until set (do not brown).  Remove to wire racks to cool.
Put dough on cool sheets - let the sheets cool off while the last one is baking.
These can also be decorated with thin icing glaze, silver dragées, or chocolate sprinkles.

  "9 Dozen"
$1.88 or 2¢ each if made with all shortening
$2.15 or 2¢ each if made with half butter and half shortening

Per Serving: 37 Calories; 2g Fat (51.8% calories from fat); trace Protein; 4g Carbohydrate; trace Dietary Fiber; 5mg Cholesterol; 21mg Sodium.  Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 0 Fruit; 1/2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

2 comments:

  1. I can't believe I never thought to press Peanut Butter Cookie dough through the spritz!! At holiday time, Spritz Cookies were always made by my mother. I inherited her cookie press, which I completely wore out! I kept it though, along with all the plates. I found another on Ebay. I've bought old ones for my kids too. I never buy shortening, though I may do so to try your recipe. I like a crispy spritz and this may be the answer.

    I am going to test out some cookie recipes using egg substitutes as my grand daughter is allergic to eggs, and I really want to continue the holiday tradition of making Christmas Cookies with her. If you or other readers has any suggestions, I'd love to hear them!

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