Santa Claus Cookies

     “Cookies on Call” was the title of an article in the December 1982 issue of Woman’s Day magazine. It was all about refrigerator cookies and the author ( Jinx Morgan) proclaimed, “They’re ideal for the hectic holidays: You can make the dough, freeze it—then slice and bake for quick desserts. Or freeze these cookies after they’re baked and decorated for almost instant treats that keep for weeks, thaw in minutes.”
     That year I made the Oatmeal Spice Cookies and decorated them with the Santa theme Jinx actually used on another oookie. Since my family loves oatmeal cookies, they were an instant success and I’ve made them every year since. Sometime along the way, I began saving a few to decorate with the family – my dad (who couldn’t boil water) even tried his hand at it a few times.
     When niece Erin turned four, she began helping me with this seasonal task; if it’s not the year that we spend Christmas with the Payne family, we decorate them at Thanksgiving. Last year I cut back on the oatmeal cookies and made gingerbread cut-outs to decorate; the rest of the family veoted that idea so this year I have lots of oatmeal cookies in the freezer . . . just waiting to be decorated.
     In the early days I always used margarine but now I rarely buy the stuff. However, even though they taste great, butter does cause them to spread . . . so use margarine if you prefer.

Here we are, several years ago, in full
decorating mode!
Santa Claus Cookies
1½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda                     
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon                                            
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg                
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves (fill a 1/4 teaspoon half full)
1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs                      
1 teaspoon vanilla
And, here we are this year (2011)!
3 cup old fashioned or instant oats
1 cup chopped walnuts

1.  In medium bowl combine flour, soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves; set aside.
2.  In large bowl, using an electric mixer, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy.
3.  Beat in eggs and vanilla until well mixed. Stir in flour mixture, then oats and nuts until blended.
4.  Shape dough in two 2"diameter rolls (if dough is sticky, I add more oats).  Wrap rolls in plastic wrap; chill 4 hours or until firm. Or, rolls may be wrapped in foil and frozen (thaw at room temperature when ready to use.)
5.  With sharp, thin knife, using sawing motion, slice dough 1/4" thick. 
6.  Place slices 1" apart on lightly greased cookie sheet.
7.  Bake in preheated 350°oven 10 minutes or until lightly browned. 
8.  Remove to rack to cool. 
9.  Use decorator frosting and a decorator bag and tips to create 'Santa' cookies. Follow design on graphic below or be creative and make desired changes . . . we always find new ways to adapt the design.
For this version, we use a star tip (#18 or 29 ) for the beard, eyes, nose & pom-pom on the hat;
#101 tip was used for the hat but we often just use the star tip for that, too.
For tips on how to use decorating bags, couplers and tips, go to . . .

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