Get Ready to Roll Christmas Cookies = No Butter Shortage



One of the charms of Solstice gatherings is the food. To mark the dark of winter, serving special foods by candlelight helps folks up in the northland to bide through winter. Richard Lafortune is a man of tradition.  He faithfully recreates the many Christmas cookies from his childhood each year for friends at Winter Solstice and for family at Christmas.

Each year I have enjoyed the many offerings and good conversation at Richard’s solstice gatherings.  This year I asked to document his cookie making.  This is just a sampling of what is done to prepare the various dough that are used in each of his creations.  Richard puts planning in place. First, he sets out all the supplies to make sure he has everything for baking.  Richard makes a list of all the cookies and begins the magic of making these delights that have been handed down in his family for generations.

The plan takes hours. Seeing what work goes into this process, I present to you some photos of making shortbread cookies. These are no ordinary cookies. (Real Butter!)

The Ingredients

Viennese Shortbread

"Making a list and checking it twice"

A little bucket of flour - it's a go!

Shortbread Dough - Flour Butter Sugar Salt Egg, a splash of milk when it's too dry.

Mix and shape dough with your hands.

After dough rests in the fridge, get ready to roll the dough.

Ready, roll. Another dough was made with cocoa.

Squaring the Edges of the Dough

Dividing the Dough

The Checkerboard Divide

Four Stacks for the Checkerboard

Checkerboard ready to cut

Second Batch Roll out Spiral Cookies

Are we rolling?


Ready for final division - pretty!

Fresh from the oven!

The cookies on the left are pecan cups from Richard’s Nonnie’s recipe.  I took over 90 photos of the work involved.  This little essay is just a glimpse into the process. Richard made Christmas bread, fruitcake, and in total eight items for Solstice and Christmas – all to share.  Richard creates a memory for all his guests which he hands down from all the generations of women who perfected these cookies, breads, and love.

There is nothing like home made cookies!

Peace and Happy Holidays to all.



About kunstkitchen

Visual artist and writer hunting words, languages, visions, and insight in my kitchen - connecting Art (Kunst) and culture and slow food cooking. Credits: Do not own a microwave oven and never have. Do not own a food processor. Chopped veggies in a Zen monastery for a weekend. (Seriously) Classically trained artist. Paint and draw with traditional materials. Live in the Northland where it's six months of winter. Appreciate the little things in life. Sharing food and art experiences and the lessons that my talented and generous friends have given me.
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