A couple years ago a friend and I started getting together to do some holiday baking together. We usually crank out several recipes after work, and divide them up. We have used my recipes, and hers, so it is also a great way to try some new recipes. The first year we did this, I fell in love with her Ice Box Cookies. It is an old fashioned, simple recipe, and I love it.
Just plan ahead a bit as you have to let the dough chill over night.
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups light brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup walnuts, finely chopped
8 oz dates, finely chopped**
In large bowl, cream together butter and brown sugar until smooth and creamy. Add eggs and vanilla, mix well. In small bowl, combine baking soda, salt and flour. Add dry ingredients to butter mixture, mixing well. Add walnuts and dates, mix until evenly distributed through dough.
Line 9x5 pan with plastic wrap. Press cookie dough into lined pan. Smooth top of dough until level. Cover with additional plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Refrigerate at least 8 hours, but no more than 24.
When ready to bake cookies preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove dough from pan. With serrated knife, cut dough crosswise into 1/8 - 1/4 inch thick slices**. Then, cut each slice crosswise into 3 cookies. Place cookies, on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 8 to 10 minutes, or until lightly golden. Transfer cookies to cooling rack.
Store in airtight container.
**To help chop the dates, sprinkle with a teaspoon of flour. That will keep them from sticking to your knife.
**If the dough gets to warm, it won't slice properly. Put it back in the refrigerator for a few minutes to get it chilled.
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