Sunday, December 18, 2011

Mexican Wedding Cookies

This is most definitely going to be a short post.  It's 3:40 AM on Sunday, and I'm just getting a chance to finally sit down and take a break to put this whole post together.  I have decided to take a short break from  cramming Japanese art/physics/Islamic civ/public art and public space and work on this post for two reasons.  The first reason I can come up with is that my brain hurts.  Yes, I just said that.  My brain hurts.  It's incredibly frustrating to go on Facebook and see all your friend's statuses about finally being home for break, or celebrating their last final, or whatever, when you still have yet to take your first exam.  But that's just me ranting.  My brain does hurt though.  Attempting to stuff that much information takes its toll eventually, so I apologize in advance if any portion of this post is slightly incoherent.  I think I'm going to take a precaution in advance and just make this be a post with less words (I have to save some of the coherence that remains for finals) and fill it with lots of pretty pictures.  Maybe I'll even throw in a couple of captions here and there.  I'm gonna play it by ear as of NOW.

But anyway.  What's the second reason for taking a break?  Mexican Wedding Cookies, duh!

Or Russian tea cakes.  Or polvorones.  Or snowballs.  I actually have no idea what the real name for these cookies is, as I've seen this recipe under a whole plethora of different names, so you can call them what you want.  I'm going to call them Mexican Wedding Cookies though, because that's what I've been calling them for years, and that's what the people at Williams-Sonoma call this particular recipe.  These cookies are yummy.  I can't come up with more colorful descriptions right now, because after all, it is 4 AM and I need to save my vocabulary skills for later this week.  I did use the word "plethora" in a sentence up above though, so I guess that has to count for something right?  

These cookies are easier to make than you think, and they really are delicious.  My mom and I have been making them for years, and they make fabulous gifts.  Just stick them in a nice tin with some tissue paper, maybe throw on a bow if you're feeling daring, and you have yourself quite a nice gift to give.  

More pretty pictures up ahead!

Mexican Wedding Cookies
recipe from Williams-Sonoma 


1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar, divided into 1/2 cup and 3/4 cup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup ground almonds (I used slivered almonds that still had the skin on)


In the bowl of a standard electric mixer, beat the butter on high speed until it is fluffy and pale yellow. Add the 1/2 cup of confectioner's sugar, and continue to beat until the butter and sugar are creamed together and light and fluffy.  Lower the mixer speed, and add the vanilla and salt, beating until mixed together.

Sift together the flour and cinnamon into a bowl.  Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture, beating on low speed until the flour mixture is just incorporated completely.  Do not overmix.  

Stir in the almonds.  Cover the bowl of cookie dough with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 15 minutes.  

In the meantime, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Have two baking sheets lined with parchment paper or Silpats ready, and place the remaining 3/4 cup confectioner's sugar into a shallow bowl or dish.

After 15 minutes, remove the dough from the fridge, and shape the cookies into 1-inch balls. Arrange the cookies on the baking sheets (they will only spread a very small amount), and bake until the cookies are just golden brown on the bottom, about 15 minutes. 

Transfer the cookies to wire racks, and allow to cool for 5 minutes.  Then, roll each cookie in the confectioner's sugar, one at a time.  Allow the cookies to cool completely on wire racks before enjoying. 

Yields about 4 dozen cookies.


  1. These look so pretty! I've never made mexican wedding cookies before but I'm always curious about them. They sound delicious!

  2. @Heidi they really are delicious! try them out!

  3. Ugh, I know EXACTLY what you mean by "my brain hurts". I finished my finals on Monday, hope you are done now!

  4. I have never tasted this cookie before but I had encountered one called polvoron. The polvoron had a much simpler cooking procedure and ingredients though: the flour is toasted slightly on a pan then some powdered milk and sugar is added. Rice Krispies and/or nuts are added if desired then the whole mixture is simply compressed then wrapped in cellophane. I have to try these Mexican wedding cookies though.

    Florida Keys Weddings

    1. hmm, interesting! I've never seen polvorones prepared that way, but it sounds intriguing. I'll have to do some more research!


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