Mexican Christmas Cookies: Galletas de Navidad

articles Food & Cuisine Recipes

Karen Hursh Graber

Both blackberry and apricot jam are produced in great quantity in late summer and enjoyed during the cooler months, especially in the Sierra Madre Oriental region, where fruit orchards abound. Either one may be used in these cookies.

This recipe has appeared in several places, probably because it is the quintessential Mexican Christmas cookie recipe. The first time I saw it was in Patricia Quintana’s Mexico’s Feasts of Life.


  • 1 ½ cups butter, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 2 ½ cups fruit preserves
  • ½ cup Grand Marnier
  • ½ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • ¾ cup chopped walnuts

Mix the butter, 1/3 cup sugar and flour until well blended. Add the vanilla and egg yolks and mix until a large ball can be formed.

Knead the dough 4 to 5 minutes, dust with flour, cover with plastic and refrigerate 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease two cookie sheets.

Beat the egg whites until stiff, lower mixer speed and gradually add ¾ cup sugar and the lime juice. Beat for 1 minute, until the mixture is shiny.

On a large, floured surface roll out the dough. Transfer it to the greased cookie sheets and continue to roll out until very thin.

Combine the preserves and the Grand Marnier, then spread the mixture over the dough. Cover the preserves with the beaten egg white mixture and sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar and chopped walnuts.

Bake for 45-60 minutes or until egg whites are golden brown and crispy. Remove from oven, allow to cool and cut into squares. Makes about 2 ½ dozen.

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Published or Updated on: December 1, 2007 by Karen Hursh Graber © 2007


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