Monday, December 13, 2010

Snow!....ball cookies

So it's not really snowing here yet.  There was some dust on the ground this morning but it didn't last long.  But it got me thinking about snowball cookies.  I used to LOVE these cookies as a kid.  There was this weird Japanese/Chinese/American buffet style restaurant called Todai where you could get random Chinese food, sushi, and lots of other seafood.  But the thing that really stands out in my memories was the dessert bar.  They had a ton of mini cakes which were all okay but by the time I went to get my second serving of desserts, my entire plate would be filled with snowball cookies.  I would later fill my plate a third time (at least it was a small dessert plate and not a full dinner plate size!) with another heaping of snowball cookies that my mom would wrap up in napkins and stealthily sneak into her purse.  We would enjoy those snowball cookies for the rest of the day and next.  Mmmm. 

So anyways, I had an intense craving for snowball cookies and that's all I could think about at work.  MUST HAVE SNOWBALL COOKIES!  But I didn't want to just find some and buy them.  I wanted to make my own!  And so I did.

Here is my first batch of totally uneven and large unwieldy balls.  They still taste good!  But I always hated getting the sugar all over me as I bit into them so I wanted to make another smaller bite-sized batch.
Oy, look at the mess this makes!  All that powdered sugar everywhere!
Up close shot of the bumpy cookies. 
My lil pug was staring at me forlornly.  She was very upset with me because normally after work she spends the majority of the evening in my lap.  She could also sense that I was doing something with food and that made her even more upset because she wasn't getting any. 
So here is my second smaller sized batch.  Don't they look cute?  It's hard to make them round because you can't roll them, they crumble.  So it's a lot of squeezing and patting. 
Sugar time.  Lots and lots of sugar.  There's a half cup of sugar already inside those bad boys!
Powdering these cookies was fun and totally reminded me of that I Love Lucy episode where Lucy and Ethel are working in the candy factory and dipping those candies in the chocolate.  
They also kind of remind me of powdered cubby hole donuts.  Mmm I used to love those as a kid too.  Dang my mom let me eat all sorts of crap as a kid.
I moved closer to the oven and so did my lil pug.  Aw I didn't notice it at the time but look her little tail is uncurled because she's so sad!  So sad!
But these cookies demanded my attention! 
Ok, ok I'm almost done!  We can relax on my couch soon!  But then I'll have to get up again for a second powdering when they're fully cooled down.  Sorry!
And then it's tasting time!  Mmmmmm.  Todai!
So there are a ton of recipes for this online, all with slight nuances.  I used a mixture of them based on whatever ingredients I like best:

Snowball Cookies!
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup butter (lotsa butter!)
2 1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup of chopped walnuts

So simple!  So few ingredients!  Some people use pecans instead of walnuts and almond extract instead of vanilla.  But I like walnuts best and didn't want any contradictory nut flavor, so I stuck with vanilla.

Mix the sugar, softened/melted butter and vanilla together.  Add the salt and flour and mix well.  Add the walnuts in last.  I tried pounding the walnut chunks to get them smaller because the size of the walnut pieces affects your ability to make tight balls.  

After everything is mixed, take the batter and form small balls and place on an ungreased cookie sheet.  The first time I made 1-inch sized balls like everyone said, but I thought they were too big.  The second batch is probably more like 1/2-inch sized.  You can do whatever.  With this mixture I was able to make about 50 of these cookies on one cookie sheet.  These cookies don't spread when cooking so you can put them pretty closely together.  I had mine about 1/2 inch apart.  

Bake at 350 for 15-20 mins (I found them best at about 18 mins with my oven).  Take out and let cool a little.  When cookies are still warm roll them around in some powdered sugar and then place back on rack to cool.  When fully cooled roll the cookies in sugar again.  Lotsa lotsa sugar!  Sprinkle some on top while you're at it!  I've read that these can stay good in sealed containers for a few days but are also pretty good frozen.  I'm curious to see how they'll taste after they thaw.  

Enjoy!  And try to avoid looking at how messy your powdered kitchen is.  


  1. In my family, we call these "Angel Turds." Irreverent, perhaps, but delish. I just discovered your blog thru Boodapug; so CUTE! I have three fawn male pugs myself, and I can't wait to plow through your backlog of posts! If you want, you can catch some photos of my guys on (Sorry, I don't know how to do the linky thing. Eep!)

  2. Hahaha angel turds! That's hilarious and gross and perfect! Love your blog - especially the chin rest photo series!