Growing up, it was not Christmas without my grandma's European take on chocolate chip cookies, which she called butter balls. We always left these cookies along with Christmas tree spritz cookies for Santa and his reindeer on Christmas Eve.
Although her original recipe called for semi-sweet chocolate chips, I began substituting Andes Chocolate Mints several years ago to put my own spin on this much-beloved family recipe.
The powdered sugar sifted over the top of the cookies can be left out if desired, but I always loved it because I think it looks like fresh-fallen snow. Every Christmas, I still make these cookies and think of my Gram.
RECIPE: Mint Chocolate Chip Snowballs Yields about 3 dozen cookies
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted, plus 1/4 cup for topping
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups flour, sifted
3 ounces chopped Andes Chocolate Mints
Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
Roughly chop 3 ounces of Andes Chocolate Mints into square chips. Place the chips in a bowl and put it in the freezer. This will keep them from melting later while being incorporated into the dough.
In a stand mixer, cream butter, sugar and salt on medium speed.
Add vanilla extract and continue to stir on medium speed until the vanilla is completely incorporated.
Reduce mixer speed to slow and gradually add flour, 1/4 cup at a time.
Add chopped Andes Chocolate Mints to mixer on slow speed and mix just long enough to incorporate them into the dough.
Shape rounded tablespoons of dough and roll them into balls. Bake on a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet at 325 degrees for 13-15 minutes. The cookies will not brown on top unless they are over-baked, so the dough should still look very white when they come out of the oven, with the mint chips peeking through.
Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes, then sift the remaining 1/4 cup of powdered sugar over the top of the cookies.
Transfer to a cooling rack for an additional 15 minutes.