Recipe: Squirrel’s Nutty Pawprint Cookies

Hi there! It’s finally MY turn to share. What’s this week’s treat? My delightful oh-so-nutty pawprint cookies. Mmm-mm! These sweet treats will have you running in circles and flying from one tree branch to another! Okay, maybe for the kiddies one cookie would be enough—but me, I eat them by the dozens! Yummy! Imagine—tasty cookie dough rolled in chopped nuts and topped off with blackberry jam. Mmm-mm! A berry-itable feast! It’s a forest treat I can climb into. Here’s how you can whirl up a batch.

Squirrel’s Nutty Pawprint Cookies
(makes about 24 cookies)
What you need to gather and bring back to your tree hole:
¾ cup softened butter or margarine
½ cup firmly packed brown sugar (I like ‘em sweet, but if you don’t maybe use a little less sugar)
1 egg, separated
½ teaspoon vanilla
1 1/3 cups flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup finely chopped nuts (I love every kind of nut on earth—can you imagine the world without nuts?—but this time I used walnuts)
Blackberry jam or jelly

Here’s what you do:
Preheat the oven to 375.
1. Cream together the butter and sugar.
2. Beat in the vanilla and egg yolk (but save the white part).
3. Stir in the flour and salt. Mix it up really good.
4. With washed paws, roll the dough into balls (about one teaspoon of dough per ball).
5. Beat the egg white and dip the dough balls into it then roll each ball into the nuts (ah-ah-ah! No snitching the nuts!)
6. Set them one inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
7. Press your paw (oh wait—your paws are a lot bigger than mine—use your thumb instead) into each cookie, making a deep hole.
8. Bake in the oven for as long as it takes to read a story or two, like Blackberry Banquet, about 8-10 minutes.
9. Place baked cookies on a rack to cool.
10. Fill centers with about ½ teaspoon of blackberry jam/jelly (if the centers rise too much during baking, you can press them back down again—I use the back end of an ice cream scoop but you can use whatever tool is handy).